The Good News of Deliverance - December 13, 2020

Bible Study “The Good News of Deliverance”

Share:  Your highs (something that made you happy) and lows (something that made you sad) this week with others around you or write them down.

Light Candles for Advent

Jesus is the light of the world and we light Advent candles to signify this. It’s also a way to build anticipation for the celebration of the first coming of Jesus. Beginning on the fourth Sunday before Christmas and each Sunday leading up to Christmas Day, families light a candle and conduct a themed advent reading.

The closer one gets to Christmas, the more the candles get lit, and the brighter it shines. Advent moves us through the prophecies about Christ, to the hope he provides, to the joy he brings, and the love he gives. As we move through each week, the wreath glows brightly with significance. Let's look at the different advent candle colors and their beautiful meaning and symbolism.

The First Sunday of Advent’s Purple Candle Signifies Hope

The first Sunday of Advent leads our hearts to Hope. The purple color symbolizes royalty, repentance, and fasting. This week is a time for us to reflect on what it must have been like to feel the depth of God’s silence during the period between the Old Testament and New.

It is a time to ponder the prophecies about the promised Messiah. We begin the season with a mindset that creates hope in our hearts.

The Second Sunday of Advent’s Purple Candle Signifies Preparation

On the second Sunday of Advent, we light the Hope candle and then we light the Preparation candle/Faith. First, hope blooms as we realize the prophecies about the Messiah are true. Then we begin to prepare our hearts to receive the Lord Jesus.

Imagine how Joseph must have rushed to prepare the crude stable for Mary and the soon-to-be-born Jesus. As we rush through the season of buying gifts and attending parties, may we pause and reflect on the words of Isaiah.

The Third Sunday of Advent’s Pink Candle Signifies Joy

The third Sunday of Advent brings us to Joy. The color pink represents rejoicing/Joy. We light the previous two purple candles and then light this week’s pink one. Rejoicing is our response to the Good News — joy that our Messiah has come.

The light of the world sweeps away the darkness in our world and in our hearts. We seek him and, in joy, find him.

The Fourth Sunday of Advent’s Purple Candle Signifies Love

On the fourth Sunday of Advent, we reach the culmination of Love. The Messiah comes in love and righteousness. The angels filled the sky with the greatest news of love.

They visited the lowest of the lows in Jewish society, the shepherds, with the most amazing birth announcement. This love is no respecter of persons but is for all who receive. As we light the four candles, we ponder,

Why Some Add a Fifth White Candle

A fifth candle is an optional addition to the traditional advent celebration and represents Christ. This candle is lit on Christmas Eve. The color white stands for purity, light, and victory.

Jesus is pure — without sin and because of his sacrifice he makes us white as snow. He is the light in the darkness and the victor over sin and death. We have life because of him.

 

Today we continue our Advent journey. Advent is a time when we prepare our hearts for the coming of Jesus at Christmas. During Advent, we reflect on the hope, peace, and joy that come with the birth of Christ. We prepare ourselves for the coming of the light that will help bring God’s kingdom to earth.

Light the first (Hope), second (Faith) and third (Joy) candles on your Advent wreath.

 

Opening Prayer: Almighty God, you are always with us. Be present with us now as we learn more about your good news of deliverance. Amen.

 Questions:

How do you bring joy to someone that is an underdog in this world?

God loves justice.  What do you do when you see someone being treated unjustly?

Do you tell others the story of how Gods saved us?

 

Our scripture comes once again from the book of Isaiah. Today’s passage calls for preaching the good news of deliverance; the prophet states in verse one that they have been sent by God to bring good news to the oppressed and to proclaim the year of God’s favor. In Israel, this year was called the jubilee year. Every fifty years, debts were cancelled and slaves were set free. The prophet preaches this message of peace and justice so that those who feel captive can be set free. During Advent, we prepare for the coming of Jesus, who brings us deliverance through his crucifixion and resurrection.

Please open your Bibles to Isaiah 61:1-4, 8-11 and read or read the scriptures below. 

Isaiah 61:1-4, 8-11

The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me,
because the Lord has anointed me
to proclaim good news to the poor.
He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted,

to proclaim freedom for the captives
and release from darkness for the prisoners,[a]
2 to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor
and the day of vengeance of our God,
to comfort all who mourn,
3
and provide for those who grieve in Zion—
to bestow on them a crown of beauty

instead of ashes,
the oil of joy

instead of mourning,
and a garment of praise

instead of a spirit of despair.
They will be called oaks of righteousness,

a planting of the Lord
for the display of his splendor.

4 They will rebuild the ancient ruins
and restore the places long devastated;
they will renew the ruined cities

that have been devastated for generations.

8“For I, the Lord, love justice;
I hate robbery and wrongdoing.
In my faithfulness I will reward my people
and make an everlasting covenant with them.
9 Their descendants will be known among the nations
and their offspring among the peoples.
All who see them will acknowledge
that they are a people the Lord has blessed.”

10 I delight greatly in the Lord;
my soul rejoices in my God.
For he has clothed me with garments of salvation
and arrayed me in a robe of his righteousness,
as a bridegroom adorns his head like a priest,
and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels.
11 For as the soil makes the sprout come up
and a garden causes seeds to grow,
so the Sovereign Lord will make righteousness
and praise spring up before all nations.

 

 

Reflection Questions:

  • Why would Isaiah would tell the people of God this lesson?  
  • Why would God’s people need to hear a message of freedom and deliverance? 
  • What do you think it means to “proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor?”
  • Who in our world today do you think needs to hear God’s message of deliverance and freedom? Why do you think they need to hear this message?

 

Click her for the young learner’s lesson

Videos (Click on the words or url)

Isaiah 61:1- 4 - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lYA6fVWJ6R0 

The Spirt of the Lord Isaiah 61:1 -  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u-e7jgsiH4g

Overview: Isaiah 40-66 - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_TzdEPuqgQg

 

Activities

Bible Quiz: 

Word Search: https://thewordsearch.com/puzzle/1731068/the-good-news-of-deliverance/

Option 1: Spend time in prayer for those in our world who need to hear God’s message of deliverance from oppression.  Write down the people or places for which you would like to pray and share it with family or friends, so they can engage in praying, too.

Option 2:  Verse 4 “They will be called oaks of righteousness, a planting of the Lord for the display of his splendor.”  Draw an oak tree.  Click how to draw an oak tree.

 

Prayer: Mighty and merciful God, you deliver those who are in trouble. Help us share the good news of this deliverance with others. Amen.