Fourth Sunday in Advent, December 23, 2018

First Reading: Micah 5:2–5a

Epistle: Hebrews 10:5–10

Gospel:  Luke 1:39–45 (46–56)

“We hear the Christmas angels, The great glad tidings tell.”  Well, during this Advent season the glad tidings we have heard came to us from the prophets of the Old Testament, who clearly proclaim the grace and mercy of God in the coming of the Messiah.  We heard Jeremiah announcing that the Promise would spring forth, “a righteous Branch to spring up for David,” who will “execute justice and righteousness in the land” (Jer 33:14–16).  The prophet Malachi showed us that the Promise of God returns to His people, even though they would walk away from him.  Zephaniah told us to exult and rejoice because the Promised King of Israel, the Lord, is in your midst.  And now Micah points us to the little town of Bethlehem, where the Promise is born.  Jesus is the Promise we have heard of all along, and He will make you dwell secure.  He will be your peace.  So God has spoken by His prophets to us this Advent season.  They have spoken the Good News of our coming King: “Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion!  Shout aloud, O daughter of Jerusalem!  Behold, your king is coming to you; righteous and having salvation is he” (Zec 9:9).

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