Tomorrow will be First Advent Sunday which is celebrated by many Christian communities worldwide and even though Advent is not part of our tradition in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, you may find it a nice addition to how you “Light the World” this holiday season.
The term advent is Latin in origin and means “coming.” Bible verses that detail the coming of Jesus can prepare our hearts to receive Christ. Verses from Isaiah are some of the best to read with your family usher in the birth of Jesus!
Here is just one example:
- And there shall come forth a rod out of the stem of Jesse, and a branch shall grow out of his roots:
- And the spirit of the Lord shall rest upon him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the Lord…
- But with righteousness shall he judge the poor, and reprove with equity for the meek of the earth: and he shall smite the earth with the rod of his mouth, and with the breath of his lips shall he slay the wicked.
- And righteousness shall be the girdle of his loins, and faithfulness the girdle of his reins. — Isaiah 11: 1–2; 4–5
I first experienced the celebration while serving as a missionary in Northern Germany. It helped to make the Christmas season more Christ-centric, at least more than what I had known at home in Salt Lake City.
Traditionally this was a Catholic celebration, but living in Northern Germany, I came to see that it had become a Lutheran tradition too.
It was a tradition I brought home. Each Christmas we made an advent wreath and lit a candle for each of the four Sundays before Christmas. Then, on Christmas Eve, we lit all four to usher in the Christkindl. I loved it connecting back to that great tradition.
During Advent, formal readings are taken from Jeremiah, Baruch, Zephaniah, and Micah, but it is Isaiah’s voice that rings out over all the others. It is his prophetic voice that is the voice of Advent.
Suggested Verses for Family Reading
|Chapter and Verse||New Revised Standard Version|
1 Comfort, O comfort my people, says your God.
2 Speak tenderly to Jerusalem, and cry to her that she has served her term, that her penalty is paid, that she has received from the Lord ’s hand double for all her sins.
3 A voice cries out: “In the wilderness prepare the way of the Lord , make straight in the desert a highway for our God.
14 Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Look, the young woman is with child and shall bear a son, and shall name him Immanuel.
9 Get you up to a high mountain, O Zion, herald of good tidings; lift up your voice with strength, O Jerusalem, herald of good tidings, lift it up, do not fear; say to the cities of Judah, “Here is your God!”
1 Arise, shine; for your light has come, and the glory of the LORD has risen upon you.
2 For darkness shall cover the earth, and thick darkness the peoples; but the LORD will arise upon you, and his glory will appear over you.
2 The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light; those who lived in a land of deep darkness— on them light has shined.
6 For a child has been born for us, a son given to us; authority rests upon his shoulders; and he is named Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
|35: 5-6; 10||
5 Then the eyes of the blind shall be opened, and the ears of the deaf unstopped;
11 He will feed his flock like a shepherd; he will gather the lambs in his arms, and carry them in his bosom, and gently lead the mother sheep.