One thing I’ve come to embrace in my Christian journey is the value of tradition. Having spent my earlier Christian years in separatist and fundamentalistic circles, then later in Charismatic circles there was this common rejection of tradition on various levels. Well tradition is important because it grounds us in something sure. It creates a continuity with the past and gives support to what the church has always believed. The more the past is rejected in favor of something new, the more likely we are to get things askew.
And what greater time to reflect on the Christian faith than the beginning of the advent season. The intersection of deity and humanity, in the form of the incarnation. The promised king, the awaited messiah, the one the prophets proclaimed who would rescue and redeem.
But I also consider the setting and timing. Israel waited so long it seemed like hope would have dimmed. Under Roman rule, the relinquishment of their land to Gentile authority, the loss of a reigning king and the only relief in found in temple teaching and law obedience. Was this the way it was supposed to go? I bet many asked this question. Where was the deliverer who would set everything right and re-establish promises that have faded in the backdrop of waiting? Continue reading