Advent Hour – December 19, 2016
“The Lord of Might”
Fr. Dino Jorvina
In the song “O Come, O Come, Emmanuel,” its lyric says, “In cloud and majesty and awe.” There is a purpose for these Antiphons and when I was praying, what God really impressed upon me is that He wants to reveal Himself to us; and that as a people, we can carry the message of Advent throughout the whole year. All the Antiphons will hopefully strengthen our faith to believe in that one Emmanuel, who is always with us.
On our first day of Advent, we have seen Emmanuel. He is God; He is with us. He never leaves us nor forsakes us. On the second day, we saw that He is the Wisdom from on High. Proverbs speak about the wisdom that is from above. In the Epistle, it says that wisdom from above gives us peace.
Today, we come to this portion where He reveals Himself as the Lord of Might, in cloud and majesty and awe. Our first reading in Deuteronomy 4:35 says, “To you it was shown that you might know that the Lord, He is God and there is no other besides Him.” One of the messages of Advent, which is actually a message every day of the year, is that He is God and there is none other. Wala Siyang kapantay; wala Siyang kapares. God is second to none. This is who God is and we can put our trust and our confidence in Him. He desires that we would trust Him even in the daily things, in the humdrum things of life, and that we can trust Him whether it be good or bad.
There is a famous Christmas Carol entitled “Oh Little Town of Bethlehem.” It says, “The hopes
and fears of all the year are met indeed tonight.” God wants to show us that He is no other. A song that we always sing from the Old Testament reading says that there is no one like our God. There is none like Him, and we can trust Him. Consider the greatness of our God. We take this for granted, but take a look at creation itself. Can you just imagine how great our God is? He is the very Creator of the whole creation. See the vastness of the universe. Let us consider the earth itself - how deep the seas and the oceans.
Sometimes, we get so limited with what we are in the four walls of our room, our office or our homes. But there is a vast, vast earth around us. The earth is really very, very big. Imagine the deepest part of the sea. They say it is around 35,000 feet. Try riding an airplane and normally, the airplane goes around 30,000 feet, and when you look down, just think of how deep the deepest part of the ocean is. When we go to the swimming pool and look at 10 feet, we say, “Wow, ang lalim na noon!” But talk about 30,000 feet? That is how great our God is. The Scriptures says God measures the oceans by His hand. Let us go a little further. Look at the stars and they are not just a few kilometers or several or thousands away. They are a million light years away. This means that to reach the nearest star, it requires you to travel at the speed of light to reach that in a number of years. This is how far they are. God says He measures the sky with His hand. So with the vastness of that greatness of God who is so big, who is so enormous, and who is so huge beyond our comprehension; and He would desire to reside in our hearts. Put your hand on your heart. Jesus is residing in your heart. The God who created the entire universe resides there and He desires to tell us, “What is your problem? What is bothering you? Ano ang pinagdadaanan mo ngayon? Kaya Ko yan. Kung nagawa Ko lahat ito, kaya Ko yan. Kaya Ko yang problema mo. Ano ang a few thousand pesos sa pinagdadaanan ninyo financially or about your health issues?” God can do so many things. He is the God of Might.
Let me give you some scriptures. God is the Mighty Savior and Judge in Psalm 50. Verses 1-4 says, “The Mighty One God, the Lord, has spoken, and summoned the earth from the rising of the sun to its setting. Out of Zion perfection and beauty, God has shown forth. May our God come and not keep silence; Fire devours Him and it is very tempestuous around Him.” In Psalm 71 it says, “I will come with the mighty deeds of the Lord and make mention of His righteousness, Yours alone”.
The story of Elisha and his servant in 2Kings 6:15-17 is really very encouraging. “Now when the attendant of the man of God had risen early and gone out, behold an army with horses and chariots was circling the city. And his servant said to him, ‘Alas, my master! What shall we do?’ So he answered, ‘Do not fear, for those that are with us are more than those who are with them’. Then Elisha prayed and said, ‘Oh Lord, I pray, open his eyes that he may see.’ And the Lord opened the servant’s eyes and he say; and behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire around Elisha.”
We can see that there is an enormous, vast of hosts that is always around the people of God. When you are afraid, the Psalms says, “Whenever I am afraid, I will trust in Thee,” because beyond what our eyes can see is the very God who is always with us even in the darkest moments. When fear tries to grip us, God encourages us to fear not. 2 Chronicles 20: 20-21 is the story of Jehoshaphat, who had many enemies. “They arose early morning and went out to the wilderness of Tekoa; and when they went out, Jehoshaphat stood and said ‘Listen to me, O Judah, and the inhabitants of Jerusalem, put your trust in the Lord your God and you will be established. Put your trust in His prophets and succeed’. When he had consulted with the people, he appointed those who sang to the Lord and those who praised Him in holy attire, as they went out before the army and said, “Give thanks to the Lord for His lovingkindness is everlasting.” God’s mercies are everlasting. Lamentations says that it is new every morning. Great is our God in His faithfulness. Psalm 18 says, “I love you Lord, Oh Lord, my strength. The Lord is my rock, my fortress, and my deliverer, my God, my Rock, in whom I take refuge; my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold. I will call upon the Lord, who is worthy to be praised, and I am saved from my enemies. The cords of death encompassed me, and the torrents of ungodliness terrified me. The cords of Sheol surrounded me; the snares of death confronted me. In my distress, I call upon the Lord.” Doesn’t it sound like us? “I call upon the Lord in my distress, in my depression, and in my fears. I cry to our God and then He heard my voice.” God is not deaf! He hears us. Verses 6-7, “He heard my voice out of His holy temple, and my cry for help before Him came to His ears. Then the earth shook and quaked; and the foundations of the mountains were trembling and were shaken because He was angry.” This is the power of God!
Do you realize that the strength of a typhoon is almost like 10-50 atomic bombs? This is how strong a typhoon is! They say an earthquake with an intensity of 7 would be around 30 or more atomic bombs. The atomic bomb in Japan during the 1950’s was so enormous. The God who created all of these things is that powerful and much more, and He desires that we put our trust in Him. Whatever you are facing, trust the Lord because He is able to deliver. There are many Scriptures where God is encouraging us to trust Him because He is able.
The message of today’s Antiphon echoes throughout eternity: the Lord is Almighty and mighty to save for He is able and He will. He is able but we doubt if God can do it for us. In Matthew 8:2-3, “A leper came to Jesus and bowed down before Him and said, ‘Lord, if You are willing, You can make me clean.’ Jesus stretched out His hands and touched him, saying, ‘I am willing.’”
The great I AM is saying to us, “I am willing”. We ask the Lord, “Lord, kaya Mo bang sagutin ang financial problems ko?” God says, “I am willing.” We ask Him, “Lord, kaya Mo bang pagalingin ako?” He says, “I am willing.” God is able to do things for us, so even if things do not turn out the way that we think, trust the Almighty for He will save us. Let us put our trust in Him. I know our faith in Him is a growing experience, but faith cometh by hearing and hearing the Word of God. This is how we increase our faith. “Paano ko nga ba papalakasin ang faith ko?” The Lord said, “As small as a mustard seed, I can tell this mountain, ‘Be moved.’” We ask, “How, Lord?” The Lord says, “By hearing and hearing the Word of God.” It is easily said than done, but consider the heavens. Consider everything that we see. God is here, and always remember that He is able and He is willing to do things for us!