Editor's note: "A pandemic advent: the arrival of a Savior for all" is a sampling of biblical meditations composed by members of the Concordia University Ann Arbor community. It is our prayer that you will take time during the Advent season to read and reflect upon God's Word and await the coming of Jesus with newfound anticipation and zeal through the Holy Spirit.

December 18 – Waiting in the darkness for the light of the world

Isaiah 34:1–2, 8–35:10, Micah 1:1–7:20, Revelation 6:1-17

When reading Isaiah 34, Micah 1 and Revelation 6, it is obvious they speak of judgment and punishment from God. Isaiah 34:2 indicates, The Lord is angry with all nations; his wrath is on all their armies. He will totally destroy them, he will give them over to slaughter.

As I finished a recent conversation with my family and friends in Venezuela and other parts of the world, including my new home country of the United States, it struck me how many people have forgotten to live under God. Instead I see nations worshiping the corrupt people in power. I witness people admiring the sins of men and women and trying to emulate their actions. I observe righteous people looking the other away and not confronting evil for the sake of being “Politically Correct” or afraid of the new trend of “Cancel Culture” for speaking the truth. Are we guilty of what Isaiah and Micah described?

I struggle to see how my new home country can be influenced to justify sin, venerate venality, and worship the profane. In a similar matter, Micah refers to the adaptation and infiltration of the Samarians’ sins into God’s temple in Jerusalem. It is interesting to picture Micah wailing for the sins of the Israelites because of their betrayal of God. I see a parallel picture to those people who are presently wailing for today’s humanity, as they are being ostracized for being true Christians. Yet I celebrate the gospel light that shines through them into the darkness of our world.

After reading Isaiah 35, the joy of my heart was restored. God is truly always present and with us. Moreover, Scriptures clearly state that by keeping our faith and following God, we will be restored in a greater glory. They will enter Zion with singing; everlasting joy will crown their heads. Gladness and joy will overtake them, and sorrow and sighing will flee away (Isaiah 35:10). Through the Holy Spirit’s power, we may remain true in our Christian faith and speak God’s truths.

In this Advent season, there is greater physical darkness, and spiritual darkness has increased as well. Let us all prepare our hearts and lives for the Light of the World, before Whom every knee shall bow.

DR. UVI CASTILLO is an Associate Professor of Pharmacy and has served at Concordia since 2012



View a full schedule of “The arrival of a Savior for all”  readings here.

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