I will begin an Advent preaching series on Sunday entitled, “Threshold.” This series will be in conjunction with the daily Advent devotional that I’m making available to the St. James community (click here if you like to register for this daily devotional).
Advent is a great time to seek God’s presence in the midst of life’s transition - or “threshold” moments. To do this we are going to turn to the ancient wisdom found in the book of Isaiah. Isaiah shared words of guidance, comfort, and hope to a people living in exile. These words were remembered and treasured. Jesus preached from the scroll of Isaiah as he began his earthly ministry. Christians ever since have turned to the proclamation of good news found in Isaiah to strengthen their faith in the Messiah and direct their faithful living.
Throughout this season of Advent, I will be following in this long established tradition of preaching from Isaiah. This tradition helped to inform the writing of the Gospel (particularly Matthew, Mark, and Luke). Even Martin Luther preached from Isaiah. The specific texts from Isaiah are found throughout years A, B, and C of the Revised Common Lectionary.
It may seem peculiar to some that I won’t be preaching from one of the Gospels - Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. What about Jesus? Shouldn’t a sermon be based on a story from the life of Jesus?
Rest assured, I will be mentioning Jesus and the advent of God’s kingdom in Christ. I will do so trusting in the promise the Christ child is found in the fullness of the Bible’s witness. Both testaments bear witness to God’s plan of salvation for the whole world - not just the New Testament. With the long-expectant nature of Advent, we have a good opportunity to explore this Biblical truth and expand our Biblical imagination/thinking.
I am excited for this opportunity to study and proclaim the good news found in Isaiah and I hope that you join me in worship to listen to this series. Don’t forget - with Advent - we worship on Sundays (8 and 9:30 a.m.) AND Wednesdays (7:30 - location varies - check out calendar).
in Christ’s Light,