5 The days are surely coming, says the Lord, when I will raise up for David a righteous Branch, and he shall reign as king and deal wisely, and shall execute justice and righteousness in the land. 6In his days Judah will be saved and Israel will live in safety. And this is the name by which he will be called: ‘The Lord is our righteousness.’
7 Therefore, the days are surely coming, says the Lord, when it shall no longer be said, ‘As the Lord lives who brought the people of Israel up out of the land of Egypt’, 8but ‘As the Lord lives who brought out and led the offspring of the house of Israel out of the land of the north and out of all the lands where he* had driven them.’ Then they shall live in their own land. - Jeremiah 23:5-8
Every day when I go to work I open my inbox and see anywhere from 30-180 emails, 98% of which are people wanting me to subscribe to something or buy something. It can be somewhat amusing when it's offers for birth control pills or Viagra (given my age and gender), and sometimes they offer to bring food to my door or the latest gizmo I shouldn't live without.
The ones that bug me, though, are the ones that tell me we are in the last days, that our president won't live out his second term, and that someone or some group is/are trying to take over our country, our government, our freedoms. Today the group that was targeted was church leaders who ostensibly are attempting to take over the country, so the sender of the emails, "The End Times," reports. Evidently they read Revelation a bit more literally than I do; I tend to hang on to what Jesus said that not even he knew when the end would be.
That provides a question I hadn't considered -- if God, Jesus and the Spirit are all three persona combined into one, how can one know something the others can't? I'm glad I'm not a theologian who has to solve that problem; most of us have enough trouble trying understand the Trinity itself. But that's fodder for another day's thinking -- if God doesn't pull the plug on this world before that day comes.
What does this have to do with Advent? Well, we count off days on the Advent calendar. We are reminded daily of how many days until Christmas in newspaper ads, television and radio commercials, and signs in malls or even internet sites. We count off the days until we celebrate the birth of the son of God, but there's another clock ticking, a clock we can't see and can't anticipate. But are we just supposed to sit around and wait for it without doing anything? That would be sort of like opening a door on an Advent calendar and not finding a small piece of chocolate or a Bible verse behind it.
Let's not waste Advent. The days are surely coming when we will regret the time we wasted. Be awake! Be aware! Listen! The celebration of the Lord's coming to earth is coming soon but the celebration of the Lord's return is still to come.
We'd better be ready.