Steve Macchia Blog

25 Fulfilled Promises of Christmas – #17

25 Fulfilled Promises of Christmas:

Advent Reflections for those who Wait, Watch, and Wonder Once More

Compiled and composed by Stephen A. Macchia

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Promise #17 – the Messiah will be the Suffering Servant (Isaiah 52: 13-53:12 and Luke 22:20; Matthew 8:16-17). With “no beauty to attract us” and “nothing in his appearance that we should desire him” he was “despised and rejected, a man of suffering, and familiar with pain.” Why all of this for our Messiah Jesus? In order that he might take up our infirmities and bear the curse of our diseases…to show his incredible love for his beloved disciples. If you are a parent, you understand this concept: we would much rather suffer ourselves than have our child-who-we-love suffer. What are the marks of suffering you are enduring as you await the loving embrace of our empathetic Jesus? Will you let Jesus heal, restore and transform?

Throughout this holy season, may you and yours…Behold the fulfilled promises of Almighty God ~ Believe the Gospel proclamation of Good News in the incarnate Jesus ~ Belong to those who anticipate the coming Messiah with joyful celebration ~ Become a faithful disciple who waits, watches, and wonders with Spirit-filled anticipation once more!



25 Fulfilled Promises of Christmas – #16

25 Fulfilled Promises of Christmas:

Advent Reflections for those who Wait, Watch, and Wonder Once More

Compiled and composed by Stephen A. Macchia

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Promise #16 – the Messiah will be a light for the nations of the world (Isaiah 42: 1-6 and Luke 2: 27-32; Matthew 12: 15-18). “In faithfulness he will bring forth justice” so that all who listen to him will find hope amidst the suffering and injustices of our world. Justice for all is the light of Jesus, shining in the dark alleys of a lost and hurting world. The Messiah’s voice is for all to hear, and it’s a voice of reason, renewal, and reform. This world so easily backpedals away from righteousness and impartiality, but in Jesus we lean forward with mercy, grace, and love. In what corner of your heart have you allowed prejudice, partiality, and pride to emerge? How will the justice and mercy of Jesus transform your response to others this Christmas?

Throughout this holy season, may you and yours…Behold the fulfilled promises of Almighty God ~ Believe the Gospel proclamation of Good News in the incarnate Jesus ~ Belong to those who anticipate the coming Messiah with joyful celebration ~ Become a faithful disciple who waits, watches, and wonders with Spirit-filled anticipation once more!



25 Fulfilled Promises of Christmas – #15

25 Fulfilled Promises of Christmas:

Advent Reflections for those who Wait, Watch, and Wonder Once More

Compiled and composed by Stephen A. Macchia

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Promise #15 – the Messiah will be preceded by a forerunner (Isaiah 40: 3-5 and Matthew 3:1-3; Luke 3:1-6).  A voice in the wilderness calling forth, “Prepare the way for the Lord, make straight paths for him.” John the Baptist urged and invited all within earshot to open their heart and prepare for the coming Messiah. Repentance was his singular message, the waters of baptism were his mode of response, but it was their hearts he was reaching for the Kingdom of heaven. It’s always about the heart, first and foremost, and then our words and will. The voices of our commercial and competitive world are calling your name. What voices captivate your heart the most, and how will those voices point you to back the Messiah Jesus?

Throughout this holy season, may you and yours…Behold the fulfilled promises of Almighty God ~ Believe the Gospel proclamation of Good News in the incarnate Jesus ~ Belong to those who anticipate the coming Messiah with joyful celebration ~ Become a faithful disciple who waits, watches, and wonders with Spirit-filled anticipation once more!

 



25 Fulfilled Promises of Christmas – #14

25 Fulfilled Promises of Christmas:

Advent Reflections for those who Wait, Watch, and Wonder Once More

Compiled and composed by Stephen A. Macchia

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Promise #14 – the Messiah will be called a Nazarene (Isaiah 11:1 and Matthew 2:23). There is no disputing the reality of Jesus’ humble beginnings. Prophetically, Isaiah states that he will come forth from a shoot or root of Jesse. Jesse was the father of David, the lesser known of the two. He will be born in a lowly manger bed in Bethlehem and raised in the humble town of Nazareth. Humble beginnings are good soil for the soul, and appropriate for the Messiah. No pomp and circumstance required. Nothing but humility, hiddenness, and holiness. Will the intent of these holy days be to showcase your riches or to generously and humbly serve others in Jesus’ name?

Throughout this holy season, may you and yours…Behold the fulfilled promises of Almighty God ~ Believe the Gospel proclamation of Good News in the incarnate Jesus ~ Belong to those who anticipate the coming Messiah with joyful celebration ~ Become a faithful disciple who waits, watches, and wonders with Spirit-filled anticipation once more!



25 Fulfilled Promises of Christmas – #13

25 Fulfilled Promises of Christmas:

Advent Reflections for those who Wait, Watch, and Wonder Once More

Compiled and composed by Stephen A. Macchia

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Promise #13 – the Messiah will be the Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father and Prince of Peace (Isaiah 9: 6,7 and Luke 1:32,33). By far the most popular promise of Advent, the prophet Isaiah declares the gifts the Messiah will accompany upon his long-awaited arrival. He is Wonderful and awe-inspiring. He is the Great Counselor of the human heart. He is mighty in every regard. He is the God of all gods; everlasting and faithfully a Father to all in his family. He is the prince of peace and brings reconciliation to all who walk lovingly and graciously by his side. What are the names of the Messiah which mean the most to you today? Worship and adore him with all your heart!

Throughout this holy season, may you and yours…Behold the fulfilled promises of Almighty God ~ Believe the Gospel proclamation of Good News in the incarnate Jesus ~ Belong to those who anticipate the coming Messiah with joyful celebration ~ Become a faithful disciple who waits, watches, and wonders with Spirit-filled anticipation once more!

 



25 Fulfilled Promises of Christmas – #12

25 Fulfilled Promises of Christmas:

Advent Reflections for those who Wait, Watch, and Wonder Once More

Compiled and composed by Stephen A. Macchia

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Promise #12 – the Messiah will be a great light (Isaiah 9:1,2 and Luke 1: 76-79; Matt. 4: 13-16). The Light of the World has come in the life of Jesus. For those living in deep darkness, a bright light has dawned and the pathways that once were dimmed are now illumined. Jesus’ foreteller John would prepare the way with a prophetic light of anticipation…Jesus would come as the Great Light. And both men’s words of repentance would ready the hearer for the Kingdom of heaven, now all the nearer with the incarnation of the Messiah Jesus. Will you honestly repent, confess the corners of your heart that are in darkness, and follow the light of Jesus with renewed fervency? Let his light shine in and through you today!

Throughout this holy season, may you and yours…Behold the fulfilled promises of Almighty God ~ Believe the Gospel proclamation of Good News in the incarnate Jesus ~ Belong to those who anticipate the coming Messiah with joyful celebration ~ Become a faithful disciple who waits, watches, and wonders with Spirit-filled anticipation once more!

 



25 Fulfilled Promises of Christmas – #11

25 Fulfilled Promises of Christmas:

Advent Reflections for those who Wait, Watch, and Wonder Once More

Compiled and composed by Stephen A. Macchia

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Promise #11 – the Messiah will be born of a virgin (Isaiah 7:14 and Matthew 1: 22-23; Luke 1:31-35). Why would it be so important that the Messiah be conceived miraculously and birthed from a virgin’s womb? This was the only way God could protect the unique status of the Messiah Jesus, for unless he was conceived supernaturally, born of a virgin, and delivered naturally into this world, he would be considered the son of a human father. What do you make of the Spirit’s implantation of human life into the womb of a young, innocent woman? The mystery and mastery of this single act is what brings many into a worshipful and trusting relationship with the Almighty. What is your prayerful response today?

Throughout this holy season, may you and yours…Behold the fulfilled promises of Almighty God ~ Believe the Gospel proclamation of Good News in the incarnate Jesus ~ Belong to those who anticipate the coming Messiah with joyful celebration ~ Become a faithful disciple who waits, watches, and wonders with Spirit-filled anticipation once more!

 



25 Fulfilled Promises of Christmas – #10

25 Fulfilled Promises of Christmas:

Advent Reflections for those who Wait, Watch, and Wonder Once More

Compiled and composed by Stephen A. Macchia

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Promise #10 – the Messiah will be the rejected cornerstone (Psalm 118: 22-24 and Matthew 21:42; Luke 20: 17,18) and ultimately acclaimed (Psalm 118: 25-29 and Matthew 21:9). Imagine as a builder taking one of the most rejected stones on the pile to become the cornerstone of the building under construction. In essence that’s what God did in sending Jesus as the Messiah, knowing full well that he would be followed, then flogged …worshipped, then crucified…rejected, then acclaimed…all for love’s sake. Is the Jesus we await once more this Advent, the One you want to know more intimately and follow more closely as your loving, grace-filled Messiah?

Throughout this holy season, may you and yours…Behold the fulfilled promises of Almighty God ~ Believe the Gospel proclamation of Good News in the incarnate Jesus ~ Belong to those who anticipate the coming Messiah with joyful celebration ~ Become a faithful disciple who waits, watches, and wonders with Spirit-filled anticipation once more!



25 Fulfilled Promises of Christmas – #9

25 Fulfilled Promises of Christmas:

Advent Reflections for those who Wait, Watch, and Wonder Once More

Compiled and composed by Stephen A. Macchia

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Promise #9 – the Messiah will be called God’s Son (Psalms 2: 1-12 and Mark 1:11; Luke 3:22). “You are my son, whom I love; with you I am well pleased.” These are the words that were amplified from heaven, God the Father to God the Son. And they are words we all long to hear ourselves. Do you know with certainty today that you are God’s child? Do you know with certainty today that you are dearly loved by God? Do you know with certainty today that God is pleased with you, despite your sinfulness and the occasions where your rebellious heart emerges? The gospel of Jesus is summarized in these words spoken over him by the Father…will you open-heartedly receive the unconditional love of Jesus today?

Throughout this holy season, may you and yours…Behold the fulfilled promises of Almighty God ~ Believe the Gospel proclamation of Good News in the incarnate Jesus ~ Belong to those who anticipate the coming Messiah with joyful celebration ~ Become a faithful disciple who waits, watches, and wonders with Spirit-filled anticipation once more!

 



25 Fulfilled Promises of Christmas – #8

25 Fulfilled Promises of Christmas:

Advent Reflections for those who Wait, Watch, and Wonder Once More

Compiled and composed by Stephen A. Macchia

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Promise #8 – the Messiah will be a descendant of David (2 Samuel 7: 12-16 and Mathew 1:1; Luke 1:32,33) and greater than David (Psalm 110:1-4 and Matt. 22: 42-45). If only we all could pick our ancestry! The long-awaited Messiah Jesus was a descendant of King David, once a shepherd boy, pulled from his family to lead the people of God, a musician, psalmist, dancer, and oh yes, a sinner, adulterer, and liar too. Lest we get too carried away with how great was this man after God’s heart, his line would ultimately reach to Jesus, One far superior to David, the perfect Messiah who would live among us to lead us redemptively into life eternal. Will you follow Jesus today with fervency of heart and mind, knowing his perfect love will heal all your brokenness?

Throughout this holy season, may you and yours…Behold the fulfilled promises of Almighty God ~ Believe the Gospel proclamation of Good News in the incarnate Jesus ~ Belong to those who anticipate the coming Messiah with joyful celebration ~ Become a faithful disciple who waits, watches, and wonders with Spirit-filled anticipation once more!