Christmas Advent: The Sixteenth Day

THE PROPHET MALACHI, chosen in church tradition to conclude the Hebrew Scriptures, has for us both a blessing and a warning. Yes, the Lord we seek will come, suddenly, to his temple. “The messenger of the covenant in whom you delight—indeed he is coming, says the LORD of hosts. But who can endure the day of his coming, and who can stand when he appears?” This passage is echoed in the Revelation to John, when

Christmas Advent: The Sixth Day

GOD, THE SUPREME AUTHORITY, has spoken since the beginning of Creation, and continues to speak, in thunder and flood, in light and darkness, in seasons of rain or drought, in war and peace. We are bound to listen to his voice, for there is no other. And because he sent us his Word, and there is no other, our ears must be open to hear it. When God speaks the entire world must answer. Some

Christmas Advent: The First Day

ANTICIPATION LIFTS THE HEART. Desire is created to be fulfilled— perhaps not all at once, more likely in slow stages. Isaiah uttered his prophetic words about the renewal of the natural Creation into a wilderness of spiritual barrenness and thirst. For him, and for many other Old Testament seers, the vacuum of dry indifference into which he spoke was not yet a place of fulfillment. Yet the promise of God through this human mouthpiece (and

Preparing for Christmas

When we demand satisfaction of one another, when we demand any completion to history on our terms, when we demand that our anxiety or any dissatisfaction be taken away, saying, as it were, “Why weren’t you this for me? Why didn’t life do that for me?” we are refusing to say, “Come, Lord Jesus.” We are refusing to hold out for the full picture that is always given in time by God. When we set