Can you believe we are halfway through Advent 2016? Only two more weeks until we celebrate the birth of Jesus on Christmas! I hope you’ve been enjoying reading through Behold the Lamb of God with me this Advent season–let’s jump right in to week two.
The Hero of the Story
One thing I love about this devotional is how clearly Russ Ramsey shows us that each successive hero of the faith is not the hero of our faith. when you read through the history of God’s people in such a succinct format, I think it actually increases your longing to see the real hero arrive on the scene! As we get closer to Christmas, I can feel that desire growing in me as I read more and more about the “heroes” of the Old Covenant.
God’s Love for Us
Today at our family Advent lunch we lit the candle of love and read through scriptures that talk about God’s love for us. Maybe it’s because these passages were on my mind as I was writing this post, but I think that quite a few of the chapters we read this week show how God’s love is the foundation of His plan to save us. Here’s a passage I particularly liked from Behold the Lamb of God:
God’s call on the lives of his people has always been, above all else, a call to himself. He set his affection on his people and promised to make them clean and to give them life” (61).
It’s easy to repeat the trite saying “God is Love” and not realize how that love is more than a Sunday school, felt board type of love. Reading through this Advent devotional reminds me just how fallen and troubled the people of Israel were. At Christmas, we should remember that God’s love is working for us and in us–it’s more than an emotion, it’s a deep-seated affection in the heart of God that orchestrates our lives for His glory.
As you read the next few chapters, I challenge you to think about God’s love in this way. And, just like I did last week, tonight I’m leaving you with a few songs, passages, and questions to help you engage with the reading just a bit more!
Passages to Consider:
See the incarnate God, the unfathomable mystery of the love of God for the world. God loves human beings. God loves the world–not ideal human beings but people as they are, not an ideal world but the real world.
Who among us will celebrate Christmas correctly? Whoever finally lays down all power, all honor, all reputation, all vanity, all arrogance, all individualism beside the manger; whoever remains lowly and lets God alone be high; whoever looks at the child in the manger and sees the glory of God precisely in his lowliness.
Questions for Reflection:
- What does the love of God mean to you?
- How does the story of Scripture prove that God’s love is the foundation of his plan for us?
I’d love to hear your thoughts as we get closer to Christmas!