Readings for the 2nd Sunday in Advent

Mark 1:1-8; 2 Peter 3:8-14; Isaiah 40:1-11

       Repentance – a key part of Advent – is the central theme of Sunday’s readings.

       Isaiah compares the work of repentance to a construction project. It’s messy, it takes time, and there are things we’d love to hold onto which simply must go. But the end result is a something new and beautiful and whole. The preached Word of God can sometimes hit our ears like a bulldozer. It’s not a pleasant experience, but it clears the way for the Good News of our Savior to rebuild us from the inside out. The end result is a reconciled heart – peace with God through His Son, Jesus (Is 40).

       Peter rebukes those who scoff at the idea of Christ’s return. You say God is slow? No, he is patient! He wants all people to have the chance to repent, so that they too may one day get to bask in the beauty of the New Creation (2 Peter 3).

       No one did more to prepare the world for Jesus than John the Baptist. God used His baptism and preaching ministry to expose Israel’s need for a Savior and point people to Jesus as their true Deliverer (Mark 1).