“Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the city that kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to it!” (Luke 13:34a) What a resume! Jerusalem was the capitol city of Israel, the spiritual, social and economic center of God’s chosen people. The prophets arose roughly between 700–500 bce. They called Israel to wake up and return to the covenant they had made with God. Love God, and yourselves, and your neighbors. Sow seeds of life, seeds of peace, and of mercy, and of justice.
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Have you noticed, in these days of December, it gets dark sooner? I first noticed this on a recent cloudy and windy day. I looked out the window around 5pm and it was already dusk. So then I looked expectantly the next, hoping it had just been a storm that made it that way before, but found it drearier. When the darkness seems to be creeping in, and the temperatures keep dropping, then the church starts lighting candles. And for the next four weeks, night will expand, and the church will light more candles. And while the world’s calendar year is ending, the church declares a beginning, a new year, here and now with the first Sunday in Advent. The church enters this season with a sense of expectancy.