The Season of Advent

advent

Just last week we celebrated the feast of Christ the King marking the end of another Liturgical year. This sunday 2nd of December we start a new liturgical year by celebrating  the first week of advent. Now let me tell you what is advent. It comes from the Latin word ‘adventus’ which means arrival or coming…now whose coming?? Our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ coming in as a babe in the manger.

 

This is a four week period prior to Christmas. . It is a time to ponder the great sacrifice that our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ, made for us by coming to earth as an infant. He lived a perfect life, died a sacrificial death, and rose from the dead for us He saved us from our sins and eternal damnation because of his great love, and adopts each person individually into his family through baptism and faith in him.

An advent wreath can be a teaching tool and a reminder for Christians of the true meaning of Christmas.

 

Traditionally, the Advent wreath symbolizes the passage of the four weeks of Advent. It is typically a circular candle holder that holds five candles. During the season of Advent one candle on the wreath is lit each Sunday until all of the candles, including the fifth candle, are lit on Christmas Day. Each candle customarily represents an aspect of the spiritual preparation for the celebration of the birth of our Lord, Jesus Christ. Most Advent wreaths use three colors of candles – purple, pink, and white. However, some may use blue in place of the purple.

Prophecy Candle

On the first Sunday of Advent, the first purple candle is lit. This candle is typically called the “Prophecy Candle” in remembrance of the prophets, primarily Isaiah, who foretold the birth of Christ:

Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign: The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel. (Isaiah 7:14, NIV)

This first candle represents hope or expectation in anticipation of the coming Messiah.

Bethlehem Candle

On the second Sunday of Advent, the second purple candle is lit. This candle typically represents love. Some traditions call this the “Bethlehem Candle,” symbolizing Christ’s manger:

“This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.” (Luke 2:12, NIV)

 

Shepherds Candle

On the third Sunday of Advent the pink, or rose-colored candle is lit. This pink candle is customarily called the “Shepherds Candle,” and it represents joy:

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 that will cause great joy for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. (Luke 2:8–11, NIV)

Angels Candle

The fourth and last purple candle, often called the “Angels Candle,” represents peace and is lit on the fourth Sunday of Advent.

Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying, “Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.” (Luke 2:13–14, NIV)

 

Christ Candle

On Christmas Eve, the white center candle is lit. This candle is called the “Christ Candle” and represents the life of Christ that has come into the world. The color white represents purity. Christ is the sinless, spotless, pure Savior. Those who receive Christ as Savior are washed of their sins and made whiter than snow:

“Come now, let us settle the matter,” says the Lord. “Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red as crimson, they shall be like wool.” (Isaiah 1:18, NI

Advent for Children and Families

Celebrating with an Advent wreath during the weeks before Christmas is an excellent way for Christian families to keep Christ at the center of Christmas, and for parents to teach their children the true meaning of Christmas

 

 

Advertisement

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s