We take a lot for granted when it comes to Christmas. The birth of Jesus is a story that has been told now for 2000 years. Year after year in countless church’s the nativity scene is played out again at this time of year. It is a wonderful celebration of God’s great gift to us..
We enjoy the stories a great deal, we enjoy this time of year so much that we don’t really think about just how awesome it must have been for Mary and Joseph. To receive the message that they did, to see things through and become the holy family. To receive all those shepherds and the wise men. It is really rather overwhelming. Speak to any mother with a new born and what they will probably tell you is that they need some time and they would like to sleep. Yes, you can come over, but please bring food with you as we haven’t had time to cook.
Hearing God’s message from the angels must have been alarming and yet at the same time comforting. We don’t talk about angels often, except perhaps in the context of a ‘guardian angel’. Yet, God uses angels throughout scripture. Jacob see’s a celestial stairway and on it are the angels moving to and from heaven delivering messages. In both Matthew and Luke’s gospels angels speak to Joseph, Mary and the shepherds and they help tell the story of our saviour’s birth.
After Jesus is crucified it is again the angels who first relay the news that Jesus has risen from the grave. Angels play an important part of the story we find in scripture. This Sunday at St. Andrew’s the choir will deliver the Cantata Sing with the Angels! as our worship to God.
As you prepare for Sunday consider the following:
- What is your understanding of angels?
- Why do you think that angelic messengers appear only at the beginning and end of Matthew and Luke’s gospel?
- In what ways are angels described in scripture?