What does “gospel” even mean? Some think it has to do with going to heaven when you die. Others think it has do with being forgiven even though we don’t deserve to be. A lot of people know that “gospel” literally means “good news.” But is any good news “gospel”?...

Dear Jesus, you love us, and that is good news. You are with us, and that is good news. You lived to show us a new way to be human, and that is good news. You offer forgiveness and grace when we fall short, and that is good news. Today, I respond, “Yes and Amen.”

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Lectionary Week
December 12–18, 2022
Scripture Overview

Isaiah is sent to the king of Judah to declare a prophecy of a future birth through a virgin. The boy will be called Immanuel, “God is with us.” The psalmist cries out to God asking for an end to the suffering of the people. He believes that this will occur through a “son of man,” an expression that Jesus later uses to describe himself. Paul’s opening to Romans roots the gospel in the Hebrew scriptures. Jesus comes from the line of David and fulfills the things foretold. To understand Jesus, we must understand the Hebrew scriptures. Matthew recounts the visitation of an angel to Joseph to tell him of the coming birth of a son. Matthew interprets this birth as a fulfillment of this week’s reading from Isaiah 7.

Questions and Suggestions for Reflection

Read Isaiah 7:10-16. How does Isaiah’s prophecy continue to speak to you today? How do you hope for Christ’s coming?
Read Psalm 80:1-7, 17-19. Recall a time when you have relied on hope for God’s restoration.
Read Romans 1:1-7. What would it mean to add “servanthood” to your list of life goals?
Read Matthew 1:18-25. How is your life different for having listened to God’s call?

Respond by posting a prayer.