Second Sunday of Advent – Faith

On the second Sunday of Advent, we focus on faith. Last week, we thought about the hope and expectation that the promised Savior would come. God had told Adam and Eve about Him back in Genesis 3. Abraham and the patriarchs looked for His coming. Moses talked about Him in Deuteronomy. The prophets and psalmists foretold His coming.

But hope requires faith. What is faith? The writer of Hebrews gives us one definition:

Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.

Hebrews 11:1

If we don’t have faith, then we won’t have the assurance that those hopes and unseen promises will actually come true. But in Matthew 1 and 2, and in Luke 1 and 2, we see God’s people obeying His commands because they believed His promises He made in the Old Testament.

By faith, Mary and Joseph believed that the child she was carrying was the Son of God. By faith, the shepherds hurried to see the baby, whom the angels had announced. By faith, the wise men journeyed many days, weeks, months to see the child and worship Him. By faith, Simeon and Anna saw the infant Jesus in the temple and recognized Him as God’s promised Messiah.

We, too, can believe in God’s promises of salvation, life, and freedom from sin in the Lord Jesus. By faith we come and worship Him at Christmas, and day by day, we trust that all He has said will come true for us just as it did for Mary, Joseph, Simeon, Anna, the shepherds, the wise men, the disciples, and all who witnessed Christ’s life and death.

Do you have faith to believe that Jesus Christ came to earth at Christmas to save you, to give you life, to free you from the tyranny of evil? If you believe, then you can sing with the Christians who, all over the world and for many centuries, have caroled their faith:

O come, all ye faithful, joyful and triumphant!
O come ye, O come ye to Bethlehem;
Come and behold him
Born the King of Angels:
O come, let us adore Him, (3×)
Christ the Lord.

God of God, light of light,
Lo, he abhors not the Virgin’s womb;
Very God, begotten, not created:
O come, let us adore Him, (3×)
Christ the Lord.

Sing, choirs of angels, sing in exultation,
Sing, all ye citizens of Heaven above!
Glory to God, glory in the highest:
O come, let us adore Him, (3×)
Christ the Lord.

Yea, Lord, we greet thee, born this happy morning;
Jesus, to thee be glory given!
Word of the Father, now in flesh appearing!
O come, let us adore Him, (3×)
Christ the Lord.

translated by Frederick Oakeley, 1841

Come, let us adore Him, the Promised Savior of the world.

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