An Angelic Advent: Introduction.

Greeting TLIC readers,

Beginning tomorrow in addition to our TLIC Daily posts a special advent post will also appear online or in your email. An Angelic Advent is our second advent series which we will be replaying daily from December 1-31.

What is an Advent?

Great question. Advent simply means arrival. Like the arrival of baby Jesus at Christmas. But there is also the Second Advent of Christ when he returns to claim his bride and rule the earth. And we will even look all the way back in time to creation and the advent of the earth and humanity.

Often we refer to the season of advent. The “advent season” is that time of waiting for the arrival. So in the traditional church calendar we enter the season of Advent on December 1 as we wait for the arrival of Jesus on December 25.

It’s important for us as Christians to let this Christmas Advent season point our hearts to the second advent of Christ. The Christian life is one of waiting. Ours is a perpetual season of advent as we wait for the arrival of our Savior King.

What is an angel?

Another great question. The Bible describes all kinds of cosmic beings that surround God in his heavenly temple. Angels, cherubim, seraphim, and various powers and authorities are found in scripture. Whenever God is at work, whenever there is an advent, you can be sure there will be angels involved.

Often angels are depicted as cute and chubby little babies that float around on clouds. But what you may not know is that none of that is true. The heavenly beings are actually pretty scary, usually eliciting fear when they appear.

What you also may not know is that cherubim, seraphim, and angels are all different creatures (although in this book we will lump them all together).

Angels are God’s messengers (that’s what angel means). They surround God and do his bidding. They connect heaven and earth, God and man. They appear on earth as really awesome (and wingless) men.

Cherubim are hybrid creatures (appearing as part animal part man) that surround and guard God’s throne. “God sits enthroned between the cherubim” is a common description of God in the Bible.

And seraphim are only mentioned once in the Bible as flaming serpent creatures that also surround God’s holy throne.

So no chubby babies.

Murillo: The Annunciation of the Lord.

What does all this have to do with “To Live is Christ?” 

The angels point to our salvation, but they do not understand it and they do not experience it. Only we do. And only in Christ.

Sometimes we go as far as to worship angels or we believe that we turn into angels when we die. But our union with Christ is far greater than that. We aren’t being transformed into angels. We are being transformed into Christ. The perfectly human Christ.

This Advent season let’s allow God’s messengers to point us to God’s Message. To the ultimate fulfillment of God’s plan – our advent in Christ.

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