Thursday, November 30, 2017

Dec 1 - Luke 1:26-27


·         Advent officially starts on Sunday, but …

·         These devotions correspond to kids’ advent prayer chains from church (which start Dec 1)

·         Below is my normal devotion

·         Plus … scroll down … there’s a kids’ devotion

·         Plus … there’s family discussion questions at the end

·         How-To Advent Guide sent out yesterday



the angel Gabriel was sent

by God to a city of Galilee

named Nazareth, to a virgin

[whose] name was Mary.

Luke 1:26-27


Adult Devotion …


Angels are spiritual beings. They were created by God to serve God.


Throughout Scripture, humans generally encounter angels as messengers. Indeed, “messenger” is what the word “angel” (angelos) literally means.


·         Lot, for example, received an angel as a messenger – the angel told him to flee Sodom and not look back.

·         A few chapters later, Abraham received an angel as messenger too. In Abraham’s case, the angel told him where to find a ram as a substitutionary sacrifice for his son, Isaac.

·         Daniel – among many others – also received an angel as a messenger. Michael, the archangel, was sent to Daniel as an answer to prayer, but as this angel reports in Daniel 10, his mission and message was delayed for twenty-one days. Why? Because along the way he had to fight his way past a powerful demon (“the prince of the kingdom of Persia”).  


Throughout the pages of Scripture, God frequently used angels to speak to his people. Therefore, it should not come as a surprise that when God was finally ready to send his Son into the world, God first sent an angel as his messenger!


That messenger was the angel Gabriel. God the Father sent this angel to a teenage girl in the village of Nazareth. Gabriel would foretell the miraculous birth of a Messiah named Jesus to a virgin named Mary.


Now, in future days, we’ll contemplate this angel’s message. Today, however, let’s stop to thank God for speaking to our world and into our lives.


·         God spoke through angels.

·         And he speaks continually through his Word.

·         When Scripture says that “the Heavens declare the glory of God” (Ps 19:1), we are reminded that any- and everything that God created speaks of God’s power!

·         How else does God speak? The first words of Hebrews proclaim that “in many and various ways, God spoke his people of old by the prophets …

·         but now in these last days, he has spoken to us by his Son.”


In other words, God speaks through angels, prophets, creation, and through Jesus himself.


As we journey through Advent, are you hoping to hear from God?


I pray that you approach your Advent devotions with listening ears and an open heart. May God speak to you and make you eager for Christ to be revealed more fully in your life.


In Christ’s Love,

a guy who has been in

several Hospice rooms

where patients report

seeing angels –

could it be that the barrier

between heaven and earth is

thin at these sacred moments?

could it be that God is speaking

a word of assurance at

these moments through

these messengers?




Children’s Message …


The word “angel” means “messenger.”


Before Jesus was born, God spoke again and again through his angels. For example, God gave answers, directions, and encouragement to people like Abraham and Daniel.


Then, when it was time for God to send his Son into the world, our Lord sent the angel Gabriel to a teenage girl in the village of Nazareth. Gabriel told about the miraculous birth that was to come: Jesus would be born to a virgin named Mary.


In future days, we’ll consider what Gabriel said to Mary. But today, let’s give thanks that God loves us enough to speak to our world.


·         God spoke through angels.

·         He spoke through prophets.

·         He speaks continually through his Word.

·         The wonders that God has created – stars and starfish and you and me – continually testify to His power and purpose.

·         And finally God speaks to us through his Son.


This Advent, I hope that you hope to hear from God!


Questions for Discussion …


1.    How did Mary hear from God two thousand years ago?


2.    What did the angel Gabriel say to Mary?


3.    How do you hear from God today?


4.    What do you think God is currently saying to you?


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