Christmas Eve or Christmas Day …

jesusChristmas has finally arrived.  If you have been lighting an Advent Wreath in your home, it’s been four weeks since you lit that first candle signifying the hopes of the prophets.  On the second week you lit an additional candle that represented the love that the angels announced to world.  On the third week of Advent you added the third candle (the pink one) that represented the joy experienced by the shepherds and the subsequent believers who have chosen to follow Jesus.  Last week you lit a fourth candle that represented  the peace that was experienced in Bethlehem of that first Christmas Day as God became flesh and began His earthly journey of living among us in a bodily form named Jesus.

Tonight on Christmas Eve or tomorrow on Christmas Day is the time to light a fifth candle … a white candle that is placed in the center of the Advent wreath.  This is the Christ candle … the candle that represents Jesus the fulfillment of the hopes of the prophets, the love announced by the angels, the joy of the shepherds, and the peace (well-being) experience in Bethlehem that day. We can rejoice at His coming; but we can also rejoice in the fact that those who chose to believe in and follow Jesus the Messiah will also experience the benefit of being adopted into the God’s Forever Family … the Kingdom of God.

Here are some passages from the New Testament that speak of Jesus’ coming and what it means to those who chose to follow Him …

John 1:1-14 –   In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was with God in the beginning. 3 Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. 4 In him was life, and that life was the light of men. 5 The light shines in the darkness, but the darkness has not understood it.

            6 There came a man who was sent from God; his name was John. 7 He came as a witness to testify concerning that light, so that through him all men might believe. 8 He himself was not the light; he came only as a witness to the light. 9 The true light that gives light to every man was coming into the world.

          10 He was in the world, and though the world was made through him, the world did not recognize him. 11 He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him. 12 Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God— 13 children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God.

            14 The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth. NIV

2 Corinthians 1:20-22 – For no matter how many promises God has made, they are “Yes” in Christ. And so through him the “Amen” is spoken by us to the glory of God. 21 Now it is God who makes both us and you stand firm in Christ. He anointed us, 22 set his seal of ownership on us, and put his Spirit in our hearts as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come. NIV

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