Advent Streams: Singing – a sermon on Isaiah 35:1-10
Streaming to a Joyous Place!
† Jesus, Son, Savior †
May the grace of God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ cause you to sing!
I had a great conversation (well, we sent messages across the internet) with a promising young theologian this week. He went to the youth group here back in the day, and he asked me some questions about advent.
As we were talking about the idea that Advent is just as much about the Second Coming as Christmas, you could see his mind spinning and a grin break out as he wrote:
“The hope is that the whole of creation can finally Shabbat (that is rest)!
:” and you can wrap in that from the winter (sin) comes the new spring and the new life”
“I like it. I mostly remember the songs and candles of Advent. But it’s awesome to really dig into what the message is all about”
“That is the Christian life, isn’t it? We look to a future hope of a restored creation. The whole of scripture points to it, starting in Genesis 3!”
He gets it, that advent is not about looking back to the past, because Christmas is beautiful and the kids in Sheep hats are cute, but advent is about looking forward to the second coming and getting excited about what it means.
The first time, Jesus came and dwelt in our presence. This time, He is coming to bring us back, so we can dwell in the Father’s presence.
You saw a description of that day when even the wilderness and desert will be glad!
Of all the cool things that will happen, I want to focus on two this morning,
Here is the first…
Those who can’t speak…
Hear the first part of verse 6 again.
“The lame will leap like a deer, and those who cannot speak will sing for joy!”
Now, I look forward to the day when not one member of Concordia needs a cane or a walker, but they are lining up to go in the bounce house after
But what I am looking more towards is when those who cannot speak sing out for joy.
Interestingly, this is not just any song, it is the song of Jubilee in Hebrew, the rejoicing when every debt is cancelled, when everything is restored. It is the most joyous of sabbaths, the greatest rest in the presence of God that could be known in a lifetime.
That is what the people that can’t sing, learn to sing.
That is what being in the presence of God, and knowing how much he loves you does. It happens when we realize that He has taken care of all our sin, when everything we’ve ever done that has hurt someone, betrayed them, crushed their spirit is forgiven, all of it. I think it will be something like this,
Free at last! Free at last, praise God Almighty I am free of sin… at last!
Or maybe more like this…
Praise God from whom all blessing flow…praise Him all Creatures ..(and let them sing it out)
If you think that was something now, imagine what it will be like in a year, when there will be 60-100 more people here?
Or what it will be like with a couple billion here, around the throne of God. All excited because Christ has returned, the walkers and canes are tossed aside, and we are singing God’s praises. And all the other blessings are being realized.
When we see Jesus, who died that we might live eternally.
That bore the cost of sin so we didn’t have to,… not that’s not right.
He bore the cost of sin, so we could be with God the Father, forever.
That’s why verse 10 means so much, and so amazes me.
10 Those who have been ransomed by the LORD will return. They will enter Jerusalem singing, crowned with everlasting joy. Sorrow and mourning will disappear, and they will be filled with joy and gladness.
Imagine how great that procession is going to be, every person for who Jesus died for, every person healed of everything, from blindness and being unable to walk to cancer and heart diseases, and most of all, healing of the damage that sin has done to us.
Ransomed, all the debt paid off we will flood into heaven like a flash food.. the mega crowd of billions heading to see God, to worship Him, to praise Him, to hear Him welcome us all home.
This is what we wait for in advent, and get a little foretaste of, every time we hear we are forgiven, every time we hear He is with us, every time we remember what He promised here, and see it again as another person is cleansed in the waters of baptism… We experience His presence, as he takes our cares away as we realize our prayers are answered, in ways more precious than we can imagine.
It is just as Brandon noted..with one thing added in… the Trinity.
“That is the Christian life, isn’t it? We look to a future hope of a restored creation with the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit! The whole of scripture points to it, starting in Genesis 3!”
And every time Jesus meets us here, as we gather, and once again receive His Body and Blood…
This is advent, a time of now and not yet, a time where we glimpse a little of what it will be like when He returns because He has dwelt among us….and we beheld His glory, just as we will, even more clearly when He comes among us, and we dwell in the Father’s presence. Amen!