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This Sunday marks the beginning of Advent. This is a time to prepare for the celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ. Our sermon series during this time is “The Lord Is Come”. This phrase is taken from the favourite Christmas carol “Joy to the World”, written by Isaac Watts in 1719. He based his composition on the words of Psalm 98 which say “Shout for joy to the Lord, all the earth… for he comes to judge the earth.” Watts never intended for this to be a Christmas song and in the words there is no mention of shepherds, mangers or wise men. For some reason, the song found its way into the Christmas repertoire, and today it’s hard to imagine singing it as anything but a Christmas carol.
In the events leading up to Christ’s birth, many pronouncements were made, both by angels and men, about the baby. He was to be born “of his father David”, which speaks to his humanity; he was called the “Son of the Most High”, which refers to his divinity; his birth was predicted from earliest times, reminding us that he is a child of prophecy; and he was to be given the name Jesus, which means “Saviour”, because he would save his people from their sins. These are the four topics we will cover over the next few weeks of Advent – He is the Son of Man; He is the Son of God; He is the Promised Messiah; He is the Saviour of the World. I hope your heart will be encouraged as we remind ourselves from God’s word of the blessed coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.