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Rob’s Reflections


We are now entering the church season of Advent. Christmas time is here. We will sing carols, decorate our homes, and anticipate the celebration of the coming of the Christ child into the world.


The four gospels are mixed in how they represent the coming. Matthew and Luke bring us detailed accounts of the birth of the savior. Mark and John don’t do that. They chose to emphasize the coming of Jesus by giving us accounts of the pre‑existent Christ, and then pick up Jesus’ ministry with his baptism and subsequent interactions with a wide variety of people who later will become his followers. John begins with an early Christian hymn:

1.     In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

2.      He was in the beginning with God;

3.     all things were made through him, and without him was not anything made that was made.

4.  In him was life, and the life was the light of men.

5.  The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.


Mark begins his gospel this way:

1.     The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God.

2.     As it is written in Isaiah the prophet, ‘Behold, I send my messenger before thy face, who shall prepare thy way;

3.     the voice of one crying in the wilderness: Prepare the way of the Lord, make his paths straight.


One of the ways to interpret this is a recognition that before the Christ was a baby (the subject of an incarnation that would change the world), He was there with God from the beginning of time. While the birth stories take on a kind of announcement we celebrate every year with good food, the laughter of children, presents and great anticipation, Mark and John think it better to dwell on the fact that Jesus ‘always was’, and the beginning of his ministry being introduced by John the Baptist is the proper place to begin.


Either way, the richness of Christmas time will always motivate and inspire us. A baby, of an unlikely birth, becomes the Savior for each of us.  Christmas is truly a special time. No matter how you understand the gospels, each of us has the opportunity to celebrate December in any manner we choose, and say,

“Merry Christmas!!”

– Dr. Rob

Scriptures for December

Advent Liturgical Colors: Purple or Blue

Christmas Liturgical Color: White


December 4

Isaiah 11:1‑10

Psalm 72:1‑7, 18‑19

Romans 15;4‑13

Matthew 3:1‑12


December 11

Isaiah 35:1‑10

Psalm 146:5‑10

Luke 1:46b‑55

James 5:7‑10

Matthew 11:2‑11


December 18

Isaiah 7:10‑16

Psalm 80:1‑7, 17‑19

Romans 1:1‑7

Matthew 1:18‑25



December 25

Isaiah 52:7‑10

Psalm 98

Hebrews 1:1‑4, (5‑12)

John 1:1‑14


Flower garden at church

6520 Colfax Avenue
Lincoln, Nebraska 68507

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