Sunday Preview for December 16, 2018

Sinbad and Arnold Schwarzenegger in  Jingle All the Way  (1996)

Sinbad and Arnold Schwarzenegger in Jingle All the Way (1996)

The genuinely bad 1996 film Jingle All the Way (16% approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes, I think -- but 100% approval rating in my nostalgic heart) tracks two frantic dads seeking the must-have toy of the year on Christmas Eve. Of course, by Christmas Eve, the toy is impossible to find. The business of life had pushed out all sense of urgency until it was too late.

Many of us can relate to this feeling, especially with Christmas drawing near. But we are in even more danger of losing sight of something far more important -- and marvelous -- than Christmas day gift-giving. We are in danger of losing sight of what the Advent season reminds us: Jesus is coming back!

The prophets of old had pointed toward a glorious "day of the Lord" when God would visit the earth in both judgement and restoration. The call for God's people was to repent as they saw the day drew near.

Our passage this Sunday, Luke 3:1-18, brings us to the heart of the ministry of John the Baptist who was himself crystalized the message of the Old Testament prophets. He preached a gospel of repentance for the forgiveness of sins, pointing to the one who would bring judgement, restoration, and forgiveness: Jesus Christ.

Living on this side of the cross, what does John the Baptist's message of repentance say to us? Join us Sunday to worship our risen savior, hear the call to repentance, and experience the joy and peace that it brings!