“And what I say to you, I say to all: Watch!” Mark 13:37 (NKJV)
During this season that many in the Church call “Advent” it is important to understand what advent means in the historical context as well as from a prophetic standpoint. Advent comes from the Latin adventus which means “coming”; in the case of the Church it refers to the month or so leading up to the birth or coming of the Lord Jesus into this world. Not all Christians celebrate Advent with special services but all Christians acknowledge and celebrate Jesus’ birth as a baby into our midst. Much is made of the celebration of Christmas, which is the culmination of the initial Advent season and rightly so, for it is of paramount importance that Jesus was born to us and it is fitting that we acknowledge His birth. However; for Christians to be so caught up in Christmas (the end of the historical Advent) that we are not mindful that we are fully dependent upon the completion of the greater event; the second coming of our Lord Jesus; is to fail to prepare ourselves to meet our Lord. This second coming is the prophetic Advent of which both Old and New Testament Scriptures speak; it is as certain to occur as did the birth of Jesus as a baby some 2000 years ago. There will be major differences in the circumstances of these two comings of our Lord Jesus; in the first (Christmas) He came as a helpless baby; first revealed to lowly Shepherds in a Bethlehem manger. When He comes again it will not be as a helpless baby but as the "Lion of the Tribe of Judah." He will not reveal Himself to only a few men late at night but will come with a shout from heaven and the sound of the trumpet’s blast will be heard by all as He gathers His Church to Himself.
(1 Thessalonians 4:13-5:11) Yes, we Christians must celebrate Christmas; but we must not lose sight of or fail to prepare for the final Advent. Are you ready to meet Him?