Preacher: Alan Cameron
Verses: Luke 21:25-36
Advent marks the start of the Christian calendar. It’s a time of preparation, not simply preparing for Christmas and trying to avoid the so-called ‘silly season’ of the year end functions, but preparing our hearts and lives in anticipation of the return of Christ. For return he will, not in the manner of his first coming, incognito born in humility, rather his return will be dramatic and majestic.
Highly descriptive words are used in Scripture to depict the return of Jesus. Pictorial language sets the scene, designed to capture our imagination and attention, rather than providing mere factual information by way of a chronological blue print of what we will see when it happens. Three words by way of theological shorthand are noteworthy in this regard:
i. parousia, the word means ‘presence’ or ‘arrival’ in connection with a royal visit. We live in expectation of a royal visit by our living and risen Saviour.
ii. apocalypse, literally an unveiling of Jesus. At the moment his majesty and dominion are veiled. On that Great Day the veil will be drawn aside and the whole world will see Jesus as he truly is.
iii. epiphany, an unmistakable appearance. “We wait for the blessed hope – the appearing of the glory of our God and Saviour, Jesus Christ” (Titus 2:13)