Malankara World Journal Issue 181, Theme: Advent I and II
(Dec 5, 2013)
The Malankara World Journal Issue 181 (December 5, 2013) is
available online at:
TABLE OF CONTENTS Issue No: 181
Theme: Advent I and II
Advent is the time of the year when we look forward to the arrival
of Jesus. The word Advent comes from the Latin word 'adventus',
meaning coming. Advent has its origin when the early Christians
looked forward to the second-coming of Jesus as promised. Many
thought that it was going to happen during their lifetime. Later,
this practice of "looking forward" to the coming of Jesus Christ was
combined with the "looking back" to the first arrival of Jesus
(incarnation) on Christmas Day. ...
2. Bible Readings for This Sunday (December 8)
Birth of John the Baptist
3. Sermons for This Sunday (December 8)
Sermons for the Birth of John the Baptist
4. Nine Months Later - a Sermon on Luke 1:57-80 - What a Difference
a Year Makes
In our reading this Sunday from Luke's gospel, it's nine months
since we last came across Zechariah and what a difference those nine
months have made! Nine months previously he came across as an old
man, concerned with his duties in the temple, burdened by the
terrible worry there was no child to succeed him. And look at him
now! No mention at all of his age, no sign that he is in any way an
old man. The years have literally rolled back and here he is
praising and worshipping freely in a way quite unheard of for a
priest. What is the cause of this change?...
5. God's Mirrors - John The Baptist
As we await anew the advent of the author of salvation, John 1:6-9
tells us about John the Baptist. Instead of shepherds and seraphs,
mangers and myrrh, John tells us about this wild-haired wilderness
wonder, shining the light into the darkness. He tells us that John
the Baptizer "came as a witness to testify to the light, so that all
might believe through him. He himself was not the light, but he came
to testify to the light. The true light, which enlightens everyone,
was coming into the world" (John 1:6-9). ...
6. Featured: Story of Joseph 4: Are You Willing to Wait for God?
In this series on the life of Joseph, we're looking at nine crucial
questions. So far we have considered two questions:
Do you know why you were born?
Do you know who you are?
Here is today's question: Are you willing to wait for God?
In this chapter Joseph is waiting because there is nothing else he
can do. He can't get out of prison, he can't appeal his sentence,
and he certainly can't escape.
We will all spend a lot of time waiting for something to happen. The
question then becomes, what do you do while you wait? I find three
answers from Joseph's prison time in Genesis 40.
Be bold. ...
7. Advent ... A Time to Prepare
Advent is best understood as a period of celebration and preparation
for the commemoration of Christ's entry into our world as an event
in salvation history. It is a reminder that we were made for God;
that He loved us enough to enter into our existence. It is a time to
ponder which world we wish to be permanent citizens in… this flawed
but beautiful and passing one or the eternal world to come. That is
the invitation; the decision to live as a Catholic Christian is up
to each one of us to make. As Catholics we are encouraged to be in
this world, but not part of it. ...
8. Advent: More Is Yet to Come
The word Advent literally means "the coming or arrival". As
Christmas approaches, we look back and remember that starry night in
Bethlehem, when in an instant the entire world was changed. Glory
arrived, wrapped in the form of a baby. His coming ushered in an
entirely new reality for all to behold. The darkness of waiting was
replaced as the Light of the World came and made His dwelling among
As believers, we look back, but we also look forward. Just as our
children delight in the remembrance of past Christmas joys, they
also look forward to what awaits them under the tree. More is yet to
come. As His people, we look back and remember that Christ has come
and redeemed the world. We look forward and hope for that day when
He will come again, making all things new. More is yet to come. ...
9. Advent I: Waiting for Christ's Return
Advent is rich with theological significance, and the Scripture
readings and spiritually symbolic practices of the season help focus
our attention on the first and second coming of Christ. The Advent
season is a somber time of personal reflection, hope and longing,
and joyful expectation for the coming of Jesus. ..
10. Advent II: The Messiah Is Coming
The second Sunday in Advent (Advent II) continues on the path
started in the first week by looking forward to Christ's first and
second coming. Advent II focuses on John the Baptist, the Gentiles
being included in God's family, Christ's coming in judgment and
peace, and the church's hopeful expectation of the completion of his
11. Family Special: How to Deal with Holiday Family Tensions
We tend to idealize holidays, but human depravity doesn't go into
hibernation between Thanksgiving and New Year's. One thing that will
hit most Christians, sooner or later, are tensions within extended
families at holiday time. ...
12. Recipe: Curried Cauliflower and Apple Soup
13. About Malankara World
Read all the articles and features in this week's Malankara World
Journal online at:
Thank you for your support and help.
In HIS Service
Dr. Jacob Mathew
Malankara World Journal
ID No: 956