The Beginning

Read: Psalm 145

The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God. (v. 1)

Advent is a new beginning. Advent is a fresh start for the cosmos. Today, Mark brings us to this beginning. That first verse packs a wallop. In his usual terse way—Mark is never one to waste words—Mark tells us this is the beginning of the gospel, of the good news. Then he identifies the man from Nazareth named Jesus and immediately tells us he is the Christ, the Messiah promised from of old. And then we are told he is no less than God’s own Son. A person could spend a lifetime unpacking just these dozen words.

No one is sure how far this “beginning” extends in Mark. Is the beginning just this first chapter? Part of the first chapter? Or might it be that the entire book of Mark is itself just the beginning? In any event we start with the blunt confession that Jesus is God’s chosen and anointed Christ. Jesus is the One! But since he is God’s Son, we recognize that the divine member of the Trinity who was born as a human with the name of Jesus had existed from all eternity.

That’s good news too because it tells us that the one who advented into this world that starry night in Bethlehem has the necessary divine power to save us from our sins. Being saved is the end of the story for each of us. But it begins with Jesus the Christ, God’s own Son! —Scott Hoezee

As you pray, may the Spirit fill you with wonder over God’s Son being born as Jesus.

About the Author

Scott Hoezee is an ordained pastor in the Christian Reformed Church of North America. He served two Michigan congregations from 1990-2005 and since 2005 has been a faculty member at Calvin Theological Seminary in Grand Rapids, Michigan, where he serves chiefly as the Director of The Center for Excellence in Preaching. He is the author of several books, including most recently Why We Listen to Sermons (Calvin Press 2019) and is the co-host of the “Groundwork” radio program.

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