The true light, which gives light to everyone, was coming into the world.
Light has come into the world.
Welcome to Hope College’s second annual Advent devotional!
This year’s theme, Light Has Come, highlights something of the paradoxical nature of the Advent season.
Advent is primarily a time of waiting. It’s a time of patient anticipation as the whole church looks forward to the second coming of Jesus Christ, to the day when he returns again. So, in this sense, the light has not come — not yet. It is still coming.
More immediately, it’s that time of the year when we wait for Christmas Day, December 25. If there are already presents under the tree, you mustn’t open them yet. Again, the light has not yet come (or at least, our annual celebration of it hasn’t arrived).
It’s this second type of waiting, the waiting for Christmas Day, that makes Advent so peculiar: Every year, we wait to remember something that already happened in history: More than 2,000 years ago, all the children of the world woke up, rubbed the sleep from their eyes, and stumbled downstairs to find they had been given an undeserved, immeasurable gift — the gracious gift of Immanuel, God with us, born as a babe in Bethlehem.
Here is the Advent paradox: Even while we wait for the light to come, we also wait precisely because the light has come already. The light has come, the light is coming, and the light will come again. Come, Lord Jesus!
If you follow along with us, every day of Advent — beginning tomorrow, November 27 — you will find a new devotional reflection by a member of the Hope College faculty and staff. (If you haven’t already done so, please subscribe.) Each scripture passage is adapted from the Revised Common Lectionary readings for Advent.
Please join us for this Advent journey toward Christmas Day, as together we wait for the Light that has already come.
Scripture quotations are from the ESV® Bible (The Holy Bible, English Standard Version®), copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.