Luke 3:7-18

            John said to the crowds that came out to be baptized by him,
                        “You brood of vipers!
                                    Who warned you to flee from the wrath to come?  
                        Bear fruits worthy of repentance.
                        Do not begin to say to yourselves,
                                    ‘We have Abraham as our ancestor’;
                                    for I tell you, God is able from these stones
                                    to raise up children to Abraham.
                        Even now the ax is lying at the root of the trees;
                                    every tree therefore that does not bear good fruit
                                    is cut down and thrown into the fire.”
 
             And the crowds asked him, “What then should we do?”  In reply he said to them, “Whoever has two coats must share with anyone who has none; and whoever has food must do likewise.”
             Even tax collectors came to be baptized, and they asked him, “Teacher, what should we do?”  He said to them, “Collect no more than the amount prescribed for you.”
             Soldiers also asked him, “And we, what should we do?” He said to them, “Do not extort money from anyone by threats or false accusation, and be satisfied with your wages.”
             As the people were filled with expectation, and all were questioning in their hearts concerning John, whether he might be the Messiah, John answered all of them by saying,
            “I baptize you with water;
                        but one who is more powerful than I is coming;
                        I am not worthy to untie the thong of his sandals.
                        He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.
             His winnowing fork is in his hand,
                        to clear his threshing floor
                        and to gather the wheat into his granary;
                         but the chaff he will burn with unquenchable fire.”
 
            So, with many other exhortations, he proclaimed the good news to the people.

 

            I remember as a boy looking at the wonderful displays in the department store windows.  Those many years ago we were amazed at the bright colors, wonderful lights, and robotic displays. I always wanted to be on the inside, but I always found myself on the outside looking in.

            To be on the inside is still our fervent hope.  Let us look into our hearts and lives and get ready for Christmas.  Let us share what we have with others.  Let us work at being more Christ-like.  Let us live in an expectation of what the glory of the New Coming King brings.

            The Good News is that you don t have to be on the outside, just looking at it – you can be on the inside.  I encourage you this Advent to do just that.  Stop looking on and join in!

     Dear God, thank you for this wonderful season.

Thank you for letting me be a part of it.

 

Rev. Kevin Bowers

Weirton – First Christian Church

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