A Hope Eternal - Advent Devotional
DAY 1 OF 29
The liturgical season of Advent is a time when we, in eternal hope, anticipate and celebrate the “coming of Christ” from three vantage points: His birth in Bethlehem, our reception of Him in our hearts, and His glorious second coming.
The term “Advent” was adopted by the early Church from the Latin adventus, which means “coming” or “arrival.” The Latin adventus, in turn, was a translation of the Greek word parousia, which can be translated as “arrival,” “coming,” or “presence.” This Greek word is consistently used in the New Testament to refer to the eschatological and glorious coming of Jesus Christ at the consummation. Advent celebrates the first coming and eagerly anticipates the final coming of Christ, where He will put all things right and reign forever. Advent is also the beginning of the Christian liturgical calendar, and it is a time marked by new or renewed beginnings.
Historically, the four-week observance of Advent is marked by four distinct themes, and each Sunday of Advent worship focuses on these themes. There are multiple variations throughout Church history, but for this Advent devotional, we will use the four themes of hope, joy, love, and peace to structure our prayerful anticipation. Today is Advent Sunday, and historically this Sunday (as the first day of a seven-day focus on the biblical theme of hope) has been used by the Church to anticipate the eternal hope of Christ coming into our world to bring His salvation to a broken and dying world.
The Apostle Paul, writing to the Church in Ephesus, prays that God would open the eyes of their heart so that they may know the hope of God’s calling and His glorious inheritance in His holy people. We live in a world ravaged by sin and rebellion against God. It is sometimes hard not to be discouraged by the devastation we see around us. But the Holy Scriptures remind us that there is a different way to see, that if the Holy Spirit enlightens the eyes of our hearts, we can know an eternal hope—the hope of God in the birth of Christ and the sure hope of His final coming. May this Advent Sunday be a time of renewed hope, a hope eternal—Christ has come, and He is coming again!
Father, in the name of Your Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, open the eyes of our hearts so that we might know the eternal hope of Your calling in Your holy people. Lord Jesus, thank You for coming into our world in Your lowly birth in Bethlehem! Lord Jesus, we eagerly await Your glorious coming at the end of time. Remove our cynicism, our despair, our doubt. Enlighten the darkness of our hearts so that we might know You, our eternal hope! For this, we pray in the matchless and glorious name of Christ. Amen.
Corné J. Bekker, D. Litt. et Phil., serves as the dean for the Regent University School of Divinity.
About this Plan
A Hope Eternal – Advent Devotional explores the biblical themes of hope, joy, love, and peace as we celebrate the first coming and await the final return of Christ Jesus. Journey with Regent University School of Divinity...
We would like to thank Regent University for providing this plan. For more information, please visit: https://www.regent.edu/ministry
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