Fourth Sunday of Advent, Year A, 18th December 2022

Let the Lord enter! He is the King of Glory

Arriving at the climax of Advent, today’s readings show God asking for our love and our trust. They also demonstrate God’s faithfulness to us, sending Jesus to save us.

Isaiah is sent to comfort King Ahaz (First Reading), who has turned away from God. Isaiah sees through the false humility of Ahaz, but still gives him a sign: a maiden will give birth to a son, Emmanuel – ‘God-is-with-us’.

This same prophesy is echoed in the Gospel. Joseph also faces a difficult situation, but God speaks through an angel in Joseph’s dreams, reassuring him that his son is a gift of the Holy Spirit destined to be the Saviour. Joseph follows the angel’s command, placing his whole trust in God.

For us, Jesus is the King of Glory in today’s Psalm. The earth and all within it belong to the Lord, and all who follow God’s ways shall receive a blessing.

St Paul emphasises both the human and divine aspect of Jesus, who is both a descendant of David and the Son of God. It is Jesus alone who can bring us grace and peace. (Second Reading)

As we continue our Christmas preparations and wait in expectant hope for the Lord’s coming, let’s pray for the grace that, like Joseph, we might listen with the ear of faith, and respond obediently to the Lord’s call.

We pray especially for peace throughout the world. Just as we welcome Jesus into our own hearts, we ask the Lord to help us embrace and welcome all those whom we encounter.