Prophecy: The promise of advent

Bible TV Highlights

It’s really easy to get wrapped up in the unwrapping of chocolate during advent! The excitement that comes with the countdown for Christmas is something that many share across the UK, whether they have a faith or not. But, Amy Orr-Ewing reminds us that the word ‘advent’ means arrival or ‘coming’ pointing towards our coming King… 

It’s so great that we’re able to look into the past and see confirmation after confirmation that Jesus was to come and is who He said He was. There are over 150 verses (including over 300 descriptions) in the old testament alone that prophecy the coming Messiah, hundreds of years before He arrived! While on set, Amy reminded us: “It matters to God that we can be sure of Jesus’ coming in history that this really is God that has come. I mattered enough to him to leave these signposts for us so that we could trust that when it happened, this was actually something that had been fulfilled.” There are so many of these signposts throughout the Bible, from the very beginning, referring to Jesus’ character, his ministry and his location – here are three examples of how God prophesied about the coming King…  

‘He will crush your head, and you will strike his heel.’

Amazingly, the promise of Jesus’ coming and his power to save us was present from the beginning – in the midst of a dramatic downfall for mankind. Amy looks at Genesis 3, in which God establishes His curse on the enemy. He states that the woman’s offspring would come to crush the enemy’s head while the enemy strikes His heel (Gen 3:15). This interaction tells of our own battle with sin and ultimately Jesus’ victory over it. Our coming king has been prophesied from the very beginning, and involved us all so intimately – how amazing! As part of her message, Amy reflects: “God is going to come into the world as a man and He is going to be born of a woman. You see in scripture both male and female play this unique and significant role as the incarnation happens.”  

‘The people walking in darkness have seen a great light’

Through the prophets we see God’s intentional signposting towards Christ’s character.  The book of Isaiah is a great place to find beautiful descriptions about the Coming King. In Isaish 9 we see Jesus described as a ‘great light’ (Isa 9:2) to people walking in darkness. Jesus goes on to refer to himself as that same light of the world – the one who comes, so that people can stop walking in darkness and hopelessness. Isaiah 42 is also a great place to look. In her message, Amy helps us to unpack verse 3: ‘a bruised reed he will not break’. When thinking about reeds, we might think about the medium sized British plants found it ponds – but in the context of the Bible, in the middle east, these reeds were quite different.

Amy explains: “reeds were huge towering structural plants that were used in construction, they were used to build things like houses and boats and they could carry great weight – unless of course they became bruised! In which case, they were utterly useless. In fact, they were dangerous in construction… it might collapse.” That’s why this prophesy is so profound on closer inspection. This prophesy is pointing to someone who would come and not forsake the bruised, broken or discarded members of society. What an accurate picture of the king that was to come. Jesus embraced, taught and healed those who were deemed useless or disqualified by others.  

‘Out of you will come for me, one who will be ruler over Israel’  

Many prophecies accurately locate the storyline of the coming king. Isaiah, mentioned above, points to Galilee as a scene for this coming hope (Isaiah 9:2), which is where Jesus went on to carry out the bulk of his ministry and many miracles. Amy explains that the prophet Micah also spoke of the locations that were key in the life of Jesus. He speaks about Bethlehem, a town of David, (also confirming more details about Jesus!) and that a ruler would come from this place (Micah 5:2). “He tells us that a baby, a person, is going to be born in Bethlehem who will be a ruler and whose origins are from ancient times,” says Amy. Micah points towards a coming king who will begin their life on earth, but who also has a history beyond their time – what an amazing sign pointing towards a God who is eternal! Bethlehem, meaning ‘house of bread’ was prophesied as the birth place of Jesus, over 700 years before it happened! Amy explains to us what Micah is saying: “It’s promising fruitfulness and not starvation in the future. He’s saying that the longed-for end of the famine is going to come from the house of bread.”  

Throughout the show on TBN UK, Amy reminds us: “For Christians this season of advent has signified looking back into history to think: ‘what did it mean that God’s arrival was prophesied in history? What did it mean that God was going to arrive in the world in Jesus?’ And, it’s also traditionally been a time for Christians to look forward to the second coming.”

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Taylor Bentliff

Taylor works within our brand team at TBN UK, looking after the majority of our editorial copy and wording across online, print, and production platforms. Taylor has spent 10 years working in Christian media and loves to bring words together to share God's truth.

You may have seen her on various TBN UK programmes including Big Church Day Out, TBN Meets, Start Your Day, Praise, and Partner Time.

She is also a Bible teacher and shares some of her passion for the Word of God on the channel and on our exciting new Grow with TBN UK platform. Why not join one of her workshops!

She is also the founder of Clarity Magazine for Christian women, and on the Leadership Team for Newday, a Christian youth event coming soon to TBN UK!