The Fourth Sunday in Advent

  1. Mary Prepares for Christmas
  2. We Prepare for Christmas
SERMON TEXT:  Luke 1:39-55

In those days Mary got up and hurried to the hill country, to a town of Judah. She entered the home of Zechariah and greeted Elizabeth. Just as Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the baby leaped in her womb, and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit. She called out with a loud voice and said, “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb! But why am I so favored that the mother of my Lord should come to me? In fact, just now, as soon as the sound of your greeting reached my ears, the baby in my womb leaped for joy! Blessed is she who believed, because the promises spoken to her from the Lord will be fulfilled!”
Then Mary said,
My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord,
and my spirit has rejoiced in God my Savior,
because he has looked with favor on the humble state of his servant.
Surely, from now on all generations will call me blessed,
because the Mighty One has done great things for me, and holy is his name.
His mercy is for those who fear him from generation to generation.
He has shown strength with his arm.
He has scattered those who were proud in the thoughts of their hearts.
He has brought down rulers from their thrones.
He has lifted up the lowly.
He has filled the hungry with good things, but the rich he has sent away empty.
He has come to the aid of his servant Israel, remembering his mercy,
as he spoke to our fathers, to Abraham and his offspring forever.

Bible Readings

FIRST LESSON:  Genesis 4:1-2,6-8,25-5:5

The man was intimate with Eve, his wife. She conceived and gave birth to Cain. She said, “I have gotten a man with the LORD.” She also gave birth to Cain’s brother Abel. Abel tended sheep, but Cain worked the ground. The LORD said to Cain, “Why are you angry? Why do you have that angry look on your face? If you do good, will you not be lifted up? If you do not do good, sin is crouching at the door. It has a strong desire for you, but you must rule over it.” Cain said to Abel, his brother, “Let’s go into the field.” When they were in the field, Cain attacked Abel, his brother, and killed him. Adam was intimate with his wife again. She gave birth to a son and named him Seth, because she said, “God has set another child in place of Abel for me, since Cain killed him.” Later a son was born to Seth, and he named him Enosh. This is when people began to proclaim the name of the LORD. :This is the account about the development of Adam’s family: In the day that God created man, he made him in the likeness of God. He created them male and female and blessed them, and on the day they were created, he named them “mankind.” Adam lived years, and he became the father of a son in his own likeness, according to his own image, and he named him Seth. The days of Adam after he became the father of Seth were years, and he became the father of sons and daughters. All the days that Adam lived were years. Then he died.

SECOND LESSON:  Revelation 12:1-6

A great sign appeared in the sky: a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet and a crown of twelve stars on her head. She was pregnant, and she cried out in pain and agony as she gave birth. Another sign also appeared in the sky: There was a huge red dragon that had seven heads and ten horns and seven crowns on his heads. His tail swept away a third of the stars in the sky and threw them to the earth. The dragon stood before the woman, who was about to give birth, so that he could devour the child as soon as it was born. She gave birth to a son, a male child, who will shepherd all the nations with an iron rod. Her child was snatched up to God and to his throne. Then the woman fled into the wilderness, where she has a place prepared by God in order that she might be fed there for 1,260 days.

VERSE OF THE DAY:  Matthew 1:23

The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel.

GOSPEL: Luke 1:39-55

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