First Presbyterian Church of DuPage - The Five O’Clock
Is 64.1-9 & Mk 13.24-37
Proposition: When we see the brokenness of our world, our hearts yearn for God’s kingdom to arrive; yet we must realize how we take part in the sin that is destroying our world and repent for it.
We are here tonight to repent. We have seen God come to save us, we have been saved by God, but we have not lived our lives as those who have been saved, as those who have seen God. We are here to repent.
This is what Isaiah has to say to us tonight. Tonight we are at the beginning of Advent. We lit a candle at the beginning of this service, the first candle in the Advent Wreath. Tradition associates the first candle with hope--the hope of Messiah, exiled Israel’s hope of return to the Promised Land, our hope of Jesus’ return to save us. Hope is powerful stuff--we’ve seen that recently in political campaigns; maybe we even feel that now as we look ahead to Christmas, to reunions with family, with old friends, to a break from the regular droning on of our day-to-day lives. I strongly believe that it is our hope that sets us apart as Christians.
The passage tonight tells us a lot about hope. This is a prophetic song. The song is longer than just the text we read tonight. It starts early in the previous chapter and stretches to the close of chapter 64. The prophet wrote this song in hope.