Monday, 5 December 2016

Second Sunday of Advent: John the Baptist: Icon in the Orthodox Tradition

Advent is a time of preparation and John the Baptist is the Forerunner in the Christmas story.

He is quite some ‘warm up’ act!  And in the lectionary he has not one but two Sundays allocated to him.

He’s quite a thespian with that clothing and life style, quite the extrovert in the style of an Old Testament prophet.  If he’d still been around I suspect I would be rather pleased if he went to my neighbour’s church rather than mine!

John called for a change of heart and a transformation of the national mindset.

The story of Jesus calls for us to look at life differently.  It begins with a humble birth as shepherds come with un-characteristic appreciation of a baby laid in a manger.  And this all happening to a peasant girl not a princess.

Jesus seems to break to rules from day one.  No wonder John said we need an open mind and a generous heart to receive his message, the upside down message of God’s Kingdom.

Christmas isn’t cute – it’s radical!

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