Let's say for this morning that it is about 10 BC on the calendar. Things are tough all over, but in Israel the prophets that once spouted reams of scripture have been gone for about 400 years. The great kings of old, David and Solomon, are represented by Herod, a king approved by the Roman occupiers but of questionable lineage and blood. God's voice must seem silent to those few remaining who believe in the Lord. Does anyone in the land have a clue about what is about to happen?
Well, there was one man, Simeon, it seems who was told he would not see death until he had seen the Lord's Christ. (Luke 2:26) Maybe he was around this year and his waiting had begun, but we don't know that for sure. Other than Simeon, the people of Israel waited much like we do today: they knew Messiah was coming but not when. The eve or two before Christmas was pretty bleak it may have seemed on the spiritual front.
Advance the calendar a few short years and this is the year Jesus will come. However, those folks still do not know that the arrival of the Christ is imminent. Mary is already pregnant and well along. Zacharias has met with Gabriel and served his sentence of silence. Elisabeth has born the herald and messenger, little John the Baptist. Simeon may or may not know of his doom at this time. Yet, for most of the land they are still in that waiting and wondering mode. The eve before the first Christmas is yet a time of stark silence from the Lord by the reckoning of most believers. But we know from scripture that much was going on in God's work at this time.
That is the case on this day more than 2,000 years later. We are waiting and wondering, but God's work is ongoing and advancing. This day may be the eve of that next Christmas when Christ comes to take us home. Don't give up hope, as the first blessed birth happened then, so will the second coming in God's perfect time.
Have a Merry Christmas! (Go ahead and start now, it's only about 22 days to Christmas.)Bucky