Advent Day 5: Christ Is Proclaimed

A Montrose Church Advent Devotional by Pastor Rick

Advent Day 5: Christ Is Proclaimed

Today’s reading: Philippians 1:12-18a

For the apostle Paul, proclaiming Christ was his first and only ambition, it cost him. At the time of the writing of the Philippian correspondence, Paul was in jail. Merry Christmas.

What you and I might consider to be a setback, Paul saw as an opportunity to proclaim Jesus. So, his freedom was jeopardized, but the Gospel just kept on changing lives.

Some proclaimed Christ because they really did believe in Him and in what God was doing in the world through Him. Others had agendas not quite as noble. They wanted to cause Paul to experience “distress” (V. 17). Paul saw through it and knew they were proclaiming “Christ out of selfish ambition rather than from pure motives” (v. 17).

For Paul the fact that Jesus was being proclaimed was the main issue, so he turned it all over to God and found a peace that led him to say, “Christ is proclaimed; and in this I rejoice” (v. 18).

In the Advent season when the world goes almost crazy over Christmas, and materialism raises its head unashamedly, our hope is that Christ will be proclaimed in any and every way possible. Jesus is Lord and He will find a way. It might be in the music played in the mall. It might be in the kind word of strangers to each other when they say, “Merry Christmas.” It might be in carolers singing on street corners or in a child gazing upon a Christmas tree. It might be in the countdown to Christmas in which the Advent story can be told. It might be in youth groups visiting seniors in convalescent hospitals or senior centers. It might be in a parade where bands play songs of the season. It might be in local churches around the world where worship teams and preachers draw people to Christ and celebrate the living God who is with us.

“Christ is proclaimed; and in this I rejoice” (v. 18).

Hark! a thrilling voice is sounding!

“Christ is nigh!” it seems to say;

”Cast away the dreams of darkness,

O ye children of the day!”
– by unknown author, c. 900;
translation by Rev. Edward Caswall, 1814-1878

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