Christmas Events @ Heritage 2018

ADVENT READINGS

First Week of Advent ~ December 2nd 

Today is the first Sunday in the season known as Advent – the time leading up to the celebration of the birth of our Lord.  The Advent wreath is a beautiful custom that Christians have used down through the years to help celebrate this season.

The ring or circle of the wreath has no end, which reminds us of the never-ending love of God. The evergreen branches tell of everlasting life and the eternalness of God.

Around the circle are four candles with one special candle in the middle. Traditionally there are four candles around the outside, with a taller white candle in the centre, representing Christ and His Light.  Jesus said, “I am the Light of the world.”

Today is the beginning of this season of Advent and we light 1 candle.

The first candle is the Bethlehem Candle.  It urges us to prepare – to prepare a place in our lives and homes and hearts for the Saviour.

Scripture tells us in Micah 5:2. “But you, Bethlehem Ephrathah, though you are small among the clans of Judah, out of you will come for me one who will be ruler over Israel, whose origins are from old, from ancient times.”

And the Christmas carol says: “O come to my heart, Lord Jesus – there is room in my heart for Thee!”

Second Week of Advent ~ December 9th

Today is the second Sunday of Advent and we light 2 candles.

Last Sunday we lit the Bethlehem Candle which reminded us to prepare our hearts for the Saviour. Today we light the Prophecy Candle which reminds us of the hope promised by God through the Old Testament prophets long ago that a Messiah would come, someone who would be born to save God’s people.

This is the promise that God made through the prophet Isaiah hundreds of years before Jesus was born.

“The people walking in darkness have seen a great light; on those living in the land of the shadow of death a light has dawned… For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders.  And He will be called Wonderful Counsellor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.”  Isaiah 9:2, 6

Also in Scripture it says, “In the past God spoke to our forefathers through the prophets at many times and in various ways, but in these last days He has spoken to us by His Son.  Hebrews 1: 1-2

And the carol we sing today says, “O come, O come Emmanuel”

Third Week of Advent ~ December 16th

  1. Today is the third Sunday of Advent and we light 3 candles.

On the first Sunday we lit the Bethlehem Candle which reminded us to prepare our hearts for the Saviour.  Last Sunday we lit the Prophecy Candle which reminded us of the hope promised by God through the Old Testament prophets that a Saviour would be born.

  1. Today we light the Shepherds Candle, which reminds us of the message of good news that the shepherds heard from the angels.

3. In Luke 2: 8-14 we are told the story of the shepherds.

“And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night.  An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified.  But the angel said to them, ‘Do not be afraid.  I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people.  Today in the town of David a Saviour has been born to you; He is Christ the Lord.’” Luke 2: 8-11

  1. And what does the Christmas carol say?

“Go tell it on the mountain, over the hills and everywhere.  Go tell it on the mountain, that Jesus Christ is born.”

Fourth Sunday of Advent

  1. Today is the fourth Sunday of Advent and we light 4 candles.

On the first Sunday we lit the Bethlehem Candle which reminded us to prepare our hearts for the Saviour.  On the second Sunday we lit the Prophecy Candle which reminded us of the hope promised by God through the Old Testament prophets that a Saviour would be born.

  1. Last Sunday we lit the Shepherds Candle which reminds us of the message of good news that the shepherds heard from the angels. Today we light the Angels Candle, which reminds us of the joy of the heavenly choir of angels as they proclaimed that Jesus, had indeed been born.
  2. In Luke 2:10-14 “… the angel said to them, ‘Today in the town of David a Saviour has been born to you; He is Christ the Lord!’…Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying, ‘Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom His favour rests.’”
  3. The Christmas carols says ”Joy to the world the Lord is come, let earth receive her King”