How to Prepare for the Second Sunday of Advent, Dec. 8th, at The Crossing

After a bit of a hiatus, we’re back. On Fridays we post a guide for how to prepare for the upcoming Sunday service. It gives you a chance to read the Bible passage ahead of time, see the song list, and get your mind and heart ready. You can see some of the rationale here.

On Sunday Keith Simon continues our sermon series in Exodus with “Living in the Wilderness” from Exodus 13:17–22. The Scripture reads, 17 When Pharaoh let the people go, God did not lead them on the road through the Philistine country, though that was shorter. For God said, “If they face war, they might change their minds and return to Egypt.” 18 So God led the people around by the desert road toward the Red Sea. The Israelites went up out of Egypt ready for battle.

19 Moses took the bones of Joseph with him because Joseph had made the Israelites swear an oath. He had said, “God will surely come to your aid, and then you must carry my bones up with you from this place.”

20 After leaving Sukkoth they camped at Etham on the edge of the desert. 21 By day the LORD went ahead of them in a pillar of cloud to guide them on their way and by night in a pillar of fire to give them light, so that they could travel by day or night. 22 Neither the pillar of cloud by day nor the pillar of fire by night left its place in front of the people.

The exodus has begun: God has brought the people out of Egypt and instructed them how in the future to remember this great act of salvation. So what happens next? God leads the people in an unexpected way: not the shortest, most direct path to the Promised Land, but a longer route that takes them through the desert and up to the Red Sea. Why is that? What could this more-out-of-the-way journey mean for Israel? What relevance does it have for us? How should we understand our life and what God is doing when it seems like we’re being led through the desert rather than the easy path? Join us this Sunday to reflect on these questions.

Our song list for this second Sunday of Advent (with links to lyrics and music).

Day of Christ (lyrics and listen) – words by Patrick K. Miller; music by Andrew Camp, Christine Cover, David A. Cover, & Andrew Luley

O Come, O Come, Emmanuel (lyrics; listen) – words by unknown Latin author; translated by John M. Neale; arranged by The Sing Team

This is the Christ (lyrics; listen) – words by Martin Luther; music by Sandra McCracken

A Day of Glory (lyrics; listen) – Chris Collins, Justin Cofield, Aaron Ivey, Matt Carter; adapted from a hymn by John M. Neale

Savior of the Nations, Come (lyrics and listen) – words by Ambrose, Martin Luther; translated by Calvin Seerveld; music by Enchiridia, c. 16th century; arranged by Bruce Benedict

See you on Sunday!

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