Prepare Ye The Way Of The Lord

Prepare Ye The Way Of The Lord

December 10, 2023
Readings: Isaiah 40: 1-11
2 Peter 3:8-15a, 18
Mark 1:1-8

2nd Sunday of Advent 2023 Homily

As we come to the New Testament, we see that it has its basis on the Old Testament, established by God since the beginning. It was carefully planned, set up and layed out. Malachi 3:1 “I will send my messenger, who will prepare the way before me. Then suddenly the Lord you are seeking will come to his temple; the messenger of the covenant, whom you desire, will come,” says the LORD Almighty. This is a proclamation of the coming of Christ and the foretelling from the prophets. In the same manner, we have been called to prepare the 2nd Coming of the Lord. We should really put great emphasis on the Old Testament, because it leads to the New Testament. The Gospel is Good News. The Gospel brings peace. The way to bring people to God is peace, and not fear.

One of the Parables in the last season was the Prodigal Son. The story of two brothers who were entirely different; the younger one left his family, squandered his wealth in wanton living, but repented afterwards. The older one followed the family rules, was obedient to the father, but was self-righteous. When the prodigal son came back home, the father welcomed him with open arms. This is such a message of hope.

Today’s Gospel is about John the Baptist, whose ministry was really powerful. He lived in the wilderness, he didn’t have a home. He was in the wilderness so he could commune with God. His clothes were made of camel’s hair as a protective covering and he had on a leather belt. He ate locusts and wild honey for sustenance. (Locust here is an edible plant). He was very simple, and didn’t have to worry about what he was going to wear or eat. He had no frivolous pretenses, no fancy displays, the exact opposite of the religious leaders who were always flaunting their wares. He just concentrated in worshipping God. The people were drawn to his simplicity and realness. In fact, more people were coming to the wilderness to listen to him than there were people going into the synagogue to hear the Scribes and Pharisees. John was just like Jesus who was also simple, who did not have to worry about what He was going to wear, or where he was going to eat or sleep. Mark, the Gospel writer, was wanting to let us understand the simplicity of John the Baptist. John was proclaiming the excellencies of Christ and preparing the way for His coming. In our lives today, we are being challenged to have the same attitude, and not to focus on the things of the world, which are consuming us. We too, are to proclaim His excellencies. To express the new life given to us. Romans 12: “Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.” God gave us gifts of peace and joy. Christ came to set us free. If we would only take time to renew our minds and truly understand the necessity of walking with God. He is a Covenant-keeping God. He will never break His covenant. What He had promised, He will fulfill. God’s love is forever and He brought healing to us. The Gospel is Good News. Jude 1:24 “Now to Him who is able to keep you from stumbling, And to present you faultless Before the presence of His glory with exceeding joy.”

Christ came not to satisfy His own needs but to redeem us. The Jewish people believed that the Messiah was to come and redeem the world. We need to be busy redeeming the world. But what have we done in these last generations? We have destroyed the “Garden” by polluting it and destroying the trees which were supposed to give man protection. John baptized with water, Christ baptized us with the Holy Spirit. God has given us the ability to accomplish His will. We need to prepare ourselves and just like John, prepare the way for the coming of the Kingdom.


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