December 2023 Newsletter

From Pastor Matt Nelson

The Advent(s) of Our King

Great indeed, we confess, is the mystery of godliness: He was manifested in the flesh, vindicated by the Spirit, seen by angels, proclaimed among the nations, believed on in the world, taken up in glory.” (1 Timothy 3:16, ESV)

As we enter this Advent (from Latin, meaning “coming”) and Christmas season, we Christians often take extra time to let our mind dwell on the birth of the Christ child, Jesus. We know that this is the true “reason for the season,” above and beyond any focus on Santa Claus, mistletoe, and candy-canes. This advent of our promised King is truly a great and wonderful mystery, which Scripture tells us has three main ways that King Jesus comes to us.

In The Incarnation (INCARNATION God’s becoming human; the union of divinity and humanity in Jesus of Nazareth. Definition of Doctrine Incarnation (Lat. incarnatio, being or taking flesh), while a biblical idea, is not a biblical term. Its Christian use derives from the Latin version of John 1:14 and appears repeatedly in Latin Christian authors from about a.d. 300 onward.[1]). God promised that He would take on flesh, even specifically as a baby boy. “Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.” (Isaiah 7:14, ESV) And this child named Jesus truly was “God with us” (the meaning of “Immanuel.”)! The Apostle John speaks of Jesus coming in this way, “And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.” (John 1:14, ESV) This truly is a wonder to celebrate each Christmas season! Yet we have another way Jesus comes that we should celebrate.

As Our Personal Savior. John tells us that the coming of Jesus our Creator was for our sake.
The true light, which gives light to everyone, was coming into the world. He was in the world, and the world was made through him, yet the world did not know him. He came to his own, and his own people did not receive him. But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.” (John 1:9–13, ESV)
The Son of God was on a mission to save mankind from their sins, and this is received by faith in Jesus. This is the same gift we are offered every time we hear the Good News of Jesus. What a gift! But there is more, and for this we are still to be waiting in anticipation.

As The Final Judge. Jesus is coming again! “And then they will see the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory.” (Luke 21:27, ESV) “For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may receive what is due for what he has done in the body, whether good or evil.” (2 Corinthians 5:10, ESV)

He came as a man to die for our sins. He comes to us in the Word of God that we might believe in what He accomplished and thus receive the gift of His finished work. And He will come again to cast the Devil and all evildoers who rejected His salvation into eternal fire, and to bring all the forgiven ones into His eternal kingdom of blessedness. Rejoice in the redemption of the eternal King who came in the flesh! Believe in the Savior King who paid for your sins! Look for our coming King who will come again in glory!

The Advent Of Our King (verses 2-4)

The everlasting Son
Incarnate deigns to be
Himself a servant’s form puts on
To set His servants free

Daughter of Sion rise
To meet thy lowly King
Nor let thy faithless heart despise
The peace He comes to bring

As Judge on clouds of light
He soon will come again
And His true members all unite
With Him in heav’n to reign

Charles Coffin, John Chandler | Public Domain

[1] Walter D. III Draughon, “Incarnation,” ed. Chad Brand et al., Holman Illustrated Bible Dictionary (Nashville, TN: Holman Bible Publishers, 2003), 813.

View the December 2023 Newsletter