The Season of ADVENT
is upon us.
What Is Advent?
Many people believe Advent focuses on expectation and feel that it serves as an anticipation of Christ’s birth. This is only part of the story, however. There really is much more to this season preceeding Christmas.
The History of Advent
The word “Advent” comes from the Latin "adventus," which means “coming.” At one time, Advent was a season of preparation to celebrate the baptism of new Christians at the Feast of Epiphany in January, and to celebrate God's incarnation as testified by the visit of the wise men to the baby Jesus (Matthew 2), His baptism by John the Baptist (John 1), and His first miracle at Cana (John 2). During this season of preparation, Christians would spend 40 days in penitential prayers and fasting to prepare for the celebrations.
By the 6th century, Christians had linked Advent to the coming of Christ. The “coming” they thought about, however, was not Christ’s first coming as a baby born in Bethlehem. Rather, they contemplated His second coming as Judge of the world, at the end of time. It was not until the Middle Ages that Advent was clearly linked to Christ’s first coming at Christmas.
Today, Advent heralds the beginning of the new Christian church-year. It lasts for four weeks which include the four Sundays before Christmas Day. This year the first Sunday in Advent is November 27th.
During Advent we consider the circumstances of the church in these “last days.” As God’s people, we wait for the glorious return of Christ, when He will establish His eternal kingdom. The church today is like Israel at the end of the Old Testament. Israel looked backwards, remembering God's loving actions on their behalf to lead them out of slavery in Egypt; but they also looked forward, waiting and praying for the coming of the promised Messiah. Similarly, the church, during Advent, looks back to remember Christ's first coming in Bethlehem, while also looking forward with impatient longing to the coming of Christ's kingdom, when He returns for His people. The promise for Israel and the promis fot the church today is JESUS CHRIST. He has come and He will come again! That is the true significance of Advent.
Please feel welcome to join us during this season of preparation. Come, prepare your heart for the celebration of the Saviour's birth.
(Sunday service times below.)
Regular Worship and Bible Study Times:
9:00 - 9:45 a.m. - Children's Sunday School and Adult Bible Study
Adult class is now studying favourite Bible stories from the Old and New Testaments
10:00 - 11:00 a.m. - Worship service