Thursday of the Second Week of Advent

Today’s Reading: 2 Peter 3:8–14

“The day of the Lord will come like a thief.” – 2 Peter 3:10

The delay in our Lord’s coming leads not only to the longing of our spirits, but also to the security of our flesh. It is tempting to look back over the last however many years of our lives and remember all those times when we entertained sinful thoughts and carried out sinful deeds; yet no divine judgment swept down from heaven upon us. It is tempting to think: “I transgressed God’s Law and there were no bolts of lightning, no peals of thunder, no trumpet blasts announcing the coming of His Son to judgment. Surely it won’t happen this time, either.”

But there is no deadlier delusion of the devil. The Son of God is coming on clouds of glory to execute judgment, and that right swiftly! How will He find us when He does return? Will we be drunk with this world’s allurements, living as if the promises of this life take precedence over the promises of the life to come? Or will He find us ready, waiting, prepared through faith in His Son to receive Him with joy on the day of His appearing?

He will come as a thief. Yes, we have the signs—signs that we have been witnessing for two thousand years, signs that have ever reminded us of the imminence of His judgment. But we are to live every moment of every day as if His coming could be at that instant. Because it could! And through faith in Christ, wrought by the Holy Spirit through constant immersion in His Word and holy Sacraments, we will be found prepared.

Prayer: The Bridegroom soon will call us, “Come to the wedding feast.” May slumber not befall us Nor watchfulness decrease. May all our lamps be burning With oil enough and more That we, with Him returning, May find an open door! (The Bridegroom Soon Will Call Us, LSB 514:1).

 

This devotion was written by Reverend Christopher Neuendorf, pastor of Holy Cross Lutheran Church in Davenport, IA.

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