Introduction & Prayer
What does Advent mean? [coming]
What is a prophet? [people who helped bring God’s message to people to guide them to God]
During Advent we light 5 candles. The first candle is which candle? [Prophets candle/Hope Candle]
Why does a Messiah coming bring hope?
Read Isaiah 9:2-3
2 The people who walk in darkness will see a great light. For those who live in a land of deep darkness, a light will shine. 3You will enlarge the nation of Israel, and its people will rejoice. They will rejoice before you as people rejoice at the harvest and like warriors dividing the plunder.
Describe a moment that you felt like you were walking in darkness. How did you feel?
What is the darkness that the people in the 1st century may have experienced?
How was this prophecy good news to the original Jewish audience?
Who is Isaiah describing as the people who walk in darkness? [People of the world—specifically Jewish]
What is this great light that will shine? [Messiah]
Read Isaiah 9:4-5
4For you will break the yoke of their slavery and lift the heavy burden from their shoulders. You will break the oppressor’s rod, just as you did when you destroyed the army of Midian. 5The boots of the warrior and the uniforms bloodstained by war will all be burned. They will be fuel for the fire.
What were the Jewish people expecting in Messiah? How do Jewish people who don’t believe Jesus was the Messiah interpret this verse? [Messiah will come and make Israel a world superpower.]
How do we sometimes incorrectly expect God to show up in our lives?
Why did God tell them this prophetic information hundreds of years before it would happen?
How do you feel when God tells you will be blessed, but it doesn’t feel like the burdens are lifted today?
What have you learned from the waiting moments of life?
Read Isaiah 9:6-7
6For a child is born to us, a son is given to us. The government will rest on his shoulders. And he will be called: Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. 7His government and its peace will never end. He will rule with fairness and justice from the throne of his ancestor David for all eternity.
Which of these names of God do you most need now?
What does this everlasting peace look like in your life specifically?
What does Isaiah mean when he writes that he will rule with fairness and justice for all eternity?
How might the 1st century audience used this to disqualify Jesus as the Messiah?
Read Isaiah 9:7b
The passionate commitment of the Lord of Heaven’s Armies will make this happen!
How is Isaiah saying all of this will happen? [God Himself will bring it to pass]
How is God’s plan and purpose accomplished in our lives today?
What role does our obedience play in God accomplishing His plan in us?
Read the Memory Verse Aloud: Colossians 3:13-17
13Make allowance for each other’s faults, and forgive anyone who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others. 14Above all, clothe yourselves with love, which binds us all together in perfect harmony. 15And let the peace that comes from Christ rule in your hearts. For as members of one body you are called to live in peace. And always be thankful. 16Let the message about Christ, in all its richness, fill your lives. Teach and counsel each other with all the wisdom he gives. Sing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs to God with thankful hearts. 17And whatever you do or say, do it as a representative of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through him to God the Father.
Pray that in this season that each of us would be instrumental in bringing the hope of Messiah to those who are lost.