Posted by: AJ the Irish Lass | December 3, 2017

Keep Calm, It’s Only Advent

Adventvespers

We’ve just entered into the start of a new Church year and a season that’s often under-appreciated: Advent. I’ve often felt this is a season that our barreling-down-the-road-at-60 MPH desperately needs – even the non-religious among us could probably benefit from transitioning into Christmas festivities gradually.

The so-called most wonderful time of the year is an ordeal to survive for many, rather than a time to enjoy. Stress caused by relatives, crowded stores, rude drivers, and irritation over bad music and TV programming make even a lot of “churchy” people glad to see the back end of the holiday.

Yet, with Advent, we’re able to look at things in the broader perspective: treating Thanksgiving as the start of the Christmas season is a product for modern society, not historic Christian tradition. Advent helps us prepare for the coming of Christmas, remember the prophecies that surrounded Jesus’ coming and look for his “second Advent” when he comes again.

Some traditions within Christianity have a very particular view of how events surrounding the second coming occur that involves a snatching away of Christians on earth, resulting in a theology of fear of being left behind to face a time of tribulation. Many adherents of these views believe that other groups don’t teach the second coming because there is so much divergence in the views.

It’s ironic that some place so much emphasis on when Christians will be “raptured” and other trappings in popular end-times theology when Mark 13:24-37 and other passages in the Gospels mention nothing about them. Yes, I’m aware of the oft-cited Luke 21:36, but that’s an issue for another post and a good example of why proof-texting is not a good practice.

One adherent of such views lamented the fact that many hymnals no longer had as many hymns about the second coming. Perhaps he’d never had the privilege of browsing through a hymnal with Advent hymns. 🙂

The various hymns used throughout Advent, as well as the Scriptural readings, help us look forward to the “blessed hope” at a time when it seems the world especially needs hope. Isaiah 64:1-9 ‘s desire that God would “tear open the heavens and come down” is one of the most beautiful expressions of that hope we should share.


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  1. […] Keep Calm, It’s Only Advent […]


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