Thursday, December 24, 2015

A Great Light

It is Christmas Eve. Tomorrow we celebrate the birth of Jesus! We have been preparing our hearts by reading the prophecies, and tomorrow we celebrate the coming of the One who was promised! Jesus—the Son of God, Emmanuel, the Righteous Ruler, the Branch, the One who would crush the head of the serpent, the Ancient of Days—has come to earth!

If you have missed any of the previous Advent readings, you can find them here:

The True Light has come into the world. Let us celebrate His birth!



In those days a decree went out from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be registered. This was the first registration when Quirinius was governor of Syria. And all went to be registered, each to his own town. And Joseph also went up from Galilee, from the town of Nazareth, to Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and lineage of David, to be registered with Mary, his betrothed, who was with child. And while they were there, the time came for her to give birth. And she gave birth to her firstborn son and wrapped him in swaddling cloths and laid him in a manger, because there was no place for them in the inn. 
And in the same region there were shepherds out in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And an angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were filled with great fear.10 And the angel said to them, “Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. 11 For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. 12 And this will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in swaddling cloths and lying in a manger.” 13 And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying, 
14 “Glory to God in the highest,
    and on earth peace among those with whom he is pleased!” 
15 When the angels went away from them into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let us go over to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has made known to us.” 16 And they went with haste and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby lying in a manger. 17 And when they saw it, they made known the saying that had been told them concerning this child. 18 And all who heard it wondered at what the shepherds told them. 19 But Mary treasured up all these things, pondering them in her heart. 20 And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen, as it had been told them. 
Luke 2:1-20 

The people who walked in darkness
    have seen a great light;
those who dwelt in a land of deep darkness,
    on them has light shone.
You have multiplied the nation;
    you have increased its joy;
they rejoice before you
    as with joy at the harvest,
    as they are glad when they divide the spoil.
For the yoke of his burden,
    and the staff for his shoulder,
    the rod of his oppressor,
    you have broken as on the day of Midian.
For every boot of the tramping warrior in battle tumult
    and every garment rolled in blood
    will be burned as fuel for the fire.
For to us a child is born,
    to us a son is given;
and the government shall be upon his shoulder,
    and his name shall be called
Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
    Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
Of the increase of his government and of peace
    there will be no end,
on the throne of David and over his kingdom,
    to establish it and to uphold it
with justice and with righteousness
    from this time forth and forevermore.
The zeal of the Lord of hosts will do this. 
Isaiah 9:2-7
The true light, which gives light to everyone, was coming into the world. 10 He was in the world, and the world was made through him, yet the world did not know him. 11 He came to his own, and his own people did not receive him.12 But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, 13 who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God. 
14 And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.

John 1:9-14



This month I have been enjoying listening to Let There Be Light by Point of Grace. It fits well with what we have been reading for Advent, so I want to share this song with you today. (If you are reading this blog post in an email, you will need to click over to the blog to see the video.) This song speaks of the prophets, the years of silence, and the coming of Emmanuel. It is a joyous celebration of the coming of the Light into the world!

Let There Be Light
Star of wonder, star of might
Star with royal beauty bright
Westward leading, still proceeding
Guide us to thy perfect light

From the beginning the Father
Had a magnificent plan
Revealed through the law and the prophets
To fulfill the redemption of man 
You spoke after centuries of silence
In the midst of a still, starry night
And Emmanuel came down among us
And the Father said, Let there be light 
Let there be light, let it shine bright
Piercing the darkness with dazzling white
Hope for the hopeless was born on that night
When God sent His Son and said, Let there be light
Let there be light 
People who walked in great darkness
Gathered from near and afar
Shepherds with flocks in their keeping
Three kings who follow a star 
Together the poor and the richest
Witness that Bethlehem night
And the sky full of Angels announcing
The birth of a glorious light 
Let there be light, let it shine bright
Piercing the darkness with dazzling white
Hope for the hopeless was born on that night
When God sent His Son and said, Let there be light
Let there be light 
We who are His have this calling
To praise Him and make His name known
So one day the presence of Jesus
Shines in every heart and every home
(Shines in our home)
(Star of wonder, star of beauty bright)  
Let there be light, let it shine bright
Piercing the darkness with dazzling white
Hope for the hopeless was born on that night
When God sent His Son and said, Let there be light
Let there be light 
Let there be light, let it shine bright
Piercing the darkness with dazzling white
Hope for the hopeless was born on that night
When God sent His Son and said, Let there be light
Let there be light

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