Archive for December 2017

A Multitude of Angels

In both the Old and New Testaments, the words translated “angel” literally mean “messenger”. Many times God sent individual angels to deliver His message to selected persons on earth: to Hagar (Genesis 16:7-12), Abraham (Genesis 22:11-18), Moses (Exodus 3:2), Gideon (Judges 6:11-12), Zechariah (Luke 1:11-20), Mary (Luke 1:26-38), and many more.

On the other hand, visions of heaven speak of multitudes of angels. These multitudes appear in the visions of the prophets Micaiah (1 Kings 22:19) and Isaiah (Isaiah 6:1-4) and in John’s visions recorded in Revelation (5:8-14; 7:11-12). These angels are shown serving God through obedience and praise.

But I know of only once when God sent a message to earth, not through an individual angel alone, but through a multitude of angels. This multitude was sent to announce an event that would be the turning point of all history. At that moment they would bring the praise and glory of heaven down to earth.

It was night. The place was the sky over an open field outside a small village on the eastern end of the Mediterranean. Only a handful of shepherds saw and heard this one-time appearance:

Suddenly there appeared with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying,
“Glory to God in the highest,
And on earth peace among men with whom He is pleased.” (Luke 2:13-14, NASB)

The event they announced had been whispered since the beginning of human history. This event was a Gift, prophesied for centuries by God’s seers. They had spoken in common images of a Child, a Shepherd, a Servant, a Warrior, and a King who would somehow be beyond all titles, all descriptions, and all imaginings. This Gift was a coming, a personal arrival, and on that ordinary, extraordinary night, the arrival was now:

Transcendent God had taken flesh and blood.
Holy God was, now and forever, wholly human.

Heaven itself had come to earth. The One who had sat on the throne was now an infant lying in a feeding trough. But for just a few moments that night, He brought His throne-room choir with Him.

Listen and sing:
Hymn: A Song Was Born at Christmas
Recording
Printed Music & Lyrics

from Prepare Yourself for Worship

Prepare for Advent: Peace

Father, You are peace.
You are wholeness,
harmony, and
complete well-being.

I long to breathe Your peace
as Christ breathes it,
so perfectly and naturally.
You and He are
one Spirit,
one heart,
one mind,
one love.
As I trust You, I share in Your peace.
I share in Christ, and
He Himself is peace. (Ephesians 2:14)
The fruit of His presence is peace. (Galatians 5:22)
He gives peace in every circumstance. (1 Thessalonians 3:16)

On this second Sunday of Advent,
You give us a glimpse of a new world in which
Your perfect peace flows like a river
through every relationship and
through all of life,
through the very fabric of creation itself.

That peace comes only in Jesus Christ,
who alone can make us one with You.
His peace began at His first coming –
and how I am enjoying those beginnings!
But His universal, all-encompassing peace will not be complete till
He comes again.

O come, Lord Jesus!
We wait for You and
long for You! 

Listen and sing:
Hymn: Sweet Peace
Recording
Printed Music & Lyrics

I Will Stay Faithful

Psalm 126

Father, because Your working is thorough,
it is often long-term.
Because it is long-term,
it often involves lots of waiting.
Because it involves lots of waiting,
it requires persistent faith.

Father, I trust You.
I will await
Your working in
Your time.
I will continue to be faithful in
what You have called me to do. 

Listen and sing:
Hymn: In Your Steps
Recording
Printed Music & Lyrics

Christmas Is for Everyone!

Christmas is for everyone!
God’s great Gift is given to each of us
and to all of us.

Jesus Christ is the Savior of our entire race—
not just our nation or our religion.
Culture doesn’t matter.
Education doesn’t matter.
Age doesn’t matter.
Money doesn’t matter.
Every human being can have a
rich, full, satisfying life,
now and forever,
by simply trusting Jesus Christ.

God wants everyone to know!

Listen and sing:
Hymn: Christ the Lord Is with Us!
Recording
Printed Music & Lyrics

from Prepare Yourself for Worship

Prepare for Advent

Father, Advent reminds me that
we live in a period of eager waiting.
This time between
Your first coming and
Your second coming
is one long Advent season.

Christ has come.
He has brought us forgiveness for sin, and
He has promised to return and do away with sin forever.

He has empowered us for life and service.
He has poured out on us His own holy life,
the life of the Father,
His Holy Spirit.
And He has promised that when He returns,
we will be united with Father, Son, and Spirit
completely and
forever.

He has risen from the dead, and
we are already enjoying His new resurrection life.
But He has promised to come back and
finish His resurrection transformation.
We will be fully risen in Him,
complete in Him,
new in Him,
alive in Him
in ways we have only tasted.

During this Advent season, Father,
heighten within me
the waiting,
the hoping,
the anticipating.
Fix my heart, mind, and daily life on our
oneness with You
in Jesus Christ. 

Listen and sing:
Hymn: Live in the Promise
Recording
Printed Music & Lyrics

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