With the weather cooling, my mind begins to drift towards Advent. Advent is my favourite season in the liturgical calendar. The season of Advent is a time to anticipate and prepare for the celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ. In this post I will be sharing the my favourite Advent bible reading plan that combines both old testament and new testament passages to prepare our hearts for the arrival of Christ our saviour.
The season of Advent is one of wonder, waiting, contemplation, preparation, reflection, anticipation, and quiet all at once. In the busyness of the Christmas season and the midst of traditions I think it is important for us to learn the true meaning of the season. I enjoy how the editors of Watch For The Light put it:
“Mother Teresa once noted that the first person to welcome Christ was John the Baptist, who leaped for joy on recognizing him, though both of them were still within their mothers’ wombs. We, in stark contrast, are often so dulled by superficial distractions that we are incapable of hearing any voice within, let alone listening to it. Consequently, the feeling we know as Christmas cheer lacks any real connection to the vital spirit that radiated from the manger….We miss the essence of Christmas unless we become, in the words of Eberhard Arnold “mindful of how Christ’s birth took place.” Once we do, we will sense immediately that Advent marks something momentous: God’s coming in our midst.”
As a homemaker my role is prepare our home to be a quiet refuge for our family’s souls as our hearts begin reflecting on the darkness of the fallen world we live in and yearning for Christ’s arrivals. Both the arrival of Christ in the Manger and Christ’s second coming, the redemption of all things. To do so we seek first the living Word of God. Below I have created a simple Advent bible reading that the whole family can use to learn the true meaning of Christmas! Each week there are four passages of scripture to read through starting on the Sundays of Advent. It is very flexible so you can choose to read through them all on the Sunday, do daily advent readings, space them throughout the week or whatever works best for you and your family!
Best Advent Bible Reading Plan To Grow With Jesus
Before you jump into this Advent reading plan I want to quickly mention that in our family we just read the scriptures in God’s word to our little ones, but find it helpful to also read the same stories from our children’s bibles. I personally love these two, but The Jesus Storybook Bible will work too!
First Sunday of Advent
St. (Pope) John Paul II said one First Sunday of Advent, “In Advent, we await an event which occurs in history and at the same time transcends it.”
This week read:
“But I will look to the Lord; I will wait for the God of my Salvation”~ Micah 7:7
“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. All things were created through him, and apart from him not one thing was created that has been created. In him was life, and that life was the light of men. That light shines in the darkness, and yet the darkness did not overcome it.”~ John 1: 1-5
“Jesus spoke to them again: “I am the light of the world. Anyone who follows me will never walk in the darkness but will have the light of life.”~John 8:12
“He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him. And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together. And he is the head of the body, the church. He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in everything he might be preeminent. For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood of his cross.”~Colossians 1:15-20
Second Sunday of Advent
This week read:
“And I will place on his shoulder the key of the house of David. He shall open, and none shall shut; and he shall shut, and none shall open.”~Isaiah 22:22
“The next day he saw Jesus coming toward him, and said, “Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!”~John 1:29
“They set out from Elim, and all the congregation of the people of Israel came to the wilderness of Sin, which is between Elim and Sinai, on the fifteenth day of the second month after they had departed from the land of Egypt. And the whole congregation of the people of Israel grumbled against Moses and Aaron in the wilderness, and the people of Israel said to them, “Would that we had died by the hand of the Lord in the land of Egypt, when we sat by the meat pots and ate bread to the full, for you have brought us out into this wilderness to kill this whole assembly with hunger.”
Then the Lord said to Moses, “Behold, I am about to rain bread from heaven for you, and the people shall go out and gather a day’s portion every day, that I may test them, whether they will walk in my law or not. On the sixth day, when they prepare what they bring in, it will be twice as much as they gather daily.” So Moses and Aaron said to all the people of Israel, “At evening you shall know that it was the Lord who brought you out of the land of Egypt, and in the morning you shall see the glory of the Lord, because he has heard your grumbling against the Lord. For what are we, that you grumble against us?” And Moses said, “When the Lord gives you in the evening meat to eat and in the morning bread to the full, because the Lord has heard your grumbling that you grumble against him—what are we? Your grumbling is not against us but against the Lord.”
Then Moses said to Aaron, “Say to the whole congregation of the people of Israel, ‘Come near before the Lord, for he has heard your grumbling.’” And as soon as Aaron spoke to the whole congregation of the people of Israel, they looked toward the wilderness, and behold, the glory of the Lord appeared in the cloud. And the Lord said to Moses, “I have heard the grumbling of the people of Israel. Say to them, ‘At twilight you shall eat meat, and in the morning you shall be filled with bread. Then you shall know that I am the Lord your God.’”~Exodus 16:1-12
“Now as they were eating, Jesus took bread, and after blessing it broke it and gave it to the disciples, and said, “Take, eat; this is my body.” And he took a cup, and when he had given thanks he gave it to them, saying, “Drink of it, all of you, for this is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins. I tell you I will not drink again of this fruit of the vine until that day when I drink it new with you in my Father’s kingdom.”~Matthew 26:26-29
Third Sunday of Advent
The Third Sunday of Advent is called “Gaudete Sunday” meaning rejoice.
This week read:
“Behold my servant, whom I uphold,~Isaiah 42:1
my chosen, in whom my soul delights;
I have put my Spirit upon him;
he will bring forth justice to the nations.”
““Behold, the days are coming, declares the Lord, when I will raise up for David a righteous Branch, and he shall reign as king and deal wisely, and shall execute justice and righteousness in the land. In his days Judah will be saved, and Israel will dwell securely. And this is the name by which he will be called: ‘The Lord is our righteousness.’”~Jeremiah 23:5-6
“There shall come forth a shoot from the stump of Jesse,
and a branch from his roots shall bear fruit.
And the Spirit of the Lord shall rest upon him,
the Spirit of wisdom and understanding,
the Spirit of counsel and might,
the Spirit of knowledge and the fear of the Lord.
And his delight shall be in the fear of the Lord.
He shall not judge by what his eyes see,
or decide disputes by what his ears hear,
but with righteousness he shall judge the poor,
and decide with equity for the meek of the earth;
and he shall strike the earth with the rod of his mouth,
and with the breath of his lips he shall kill the wicked.
Righteousness shall be the belt of his waist,
and faithfulness the belt of his loins.
The wolf shall dwell with the lamb,
and the leopard shall lie down with the young goat,
and the calf and the lion and the fattened calf together;
and a little child shall lead them.
The cow and the bear shall graze;
their young shall lie down together;
and the lion shall eat straw like the ox.
The nursing child shall play over the hole of the cobra,
and the weaned child shall put his hand on the adder’s den.
They shall not hurt or destroy
in all my holy mountain;
for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the Lord
as the waters cover the sea.
In that day the root of Jesse, who shall stand as a signal for the peoples—of him shall the nations inquire, and his resting place shall be glorious.”~Isaiah 11:1-10
“ And the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. And the Lord God will give to him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end.”~Luke 1:30-33
Fourth Sunday of Advent
Rejoice! Rejoice! Immanuel!
This week read:
“Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.”~Isaiah 7:14
“In the days of Herod, king of Judea, there was a priest named Zechariah, of the division of Abijah. And he had a wife from the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elizabeth. And they were both righteous before God, walking blamelessly in all the commandments and statutes of the Lord. But they had no child, because Elizabeth was barren, and both were advanced in years.
Now while he was serving as priest before God when his division was on duty, according to the custom of the priesthood, he was chosen by lot to enter the temple of the Lord and burn incense. And the whole multitude of the people were praying outside at the hour of incense. And there appeared to him an angel of the Lord standing on the right side of the altar of incense. And Zechariah was troubled when he saw him, and fear fell upon him. But the angel said to him, “Do not be afraid, Zechariah, for your prayer has been heard, and your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you shall call his name John. And you will have joy and gladness, and many will rejoice at his birth, for he will be great before the Lord. And he must not drink wine or strong drink, and he will be filled with the Holy Spirit, even from his mother’s womb. And he will turn many of the children of Israel to the Lord their God, and he will go before him in the spirit and power of Elijah, to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just, to make ready for the Lord a people prepared.”
And Zechariah said to the angel, “How shall I know this? For I am an old man, and my wife is advanced in years.” And the angel answered him, “I am Gabriel. I stand in the presence of God, and I was sent to speak to you and to bring you this good news. And behold, you will be silent and unable to speak until the day that these things take place, because you did not believe my words, which will be fulfilled in their time.” And the people were waiting for Zechariah, and they were wondering at his delay in the temple. And when he came out, he was unable to speak to them, and they realized that he had seen a vision in the temple. And he kept making signs to them and remained mute. And when his time of service was ended, he went to his home.
After these days his wife Elizabeth conceived, and for five months she kept herself hidden, saying, “Thus the Lord has done for me in the days when he looked on me, to take away my reproach among people.”~Luke 1:5-25
“Now the birth of Jesus Christ took place in this way. When his mother Mary had been betrothed to Joseph, before they came together she was found to be with child from the Holy Spirit. And her husband Joseph, being a just man and unwilling to put her to shame, resolved to divorce her quietly. But as he considered these things, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, “Joseph, son of David, do not fear to take Mary as your wife, for that which is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. She will bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.” All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had spoken by the prophet:
“Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son,
and they shall call his name Immanuel”
(which means, God with us).”~Matthew 1:18-23
“ But when the fullness of time had come, God sent forth his Son, born of woman, born under the law, to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons.”~Galatians 4:4-5
Merry Christmas! On Christmas day our family tradition before we open presents, we gather around the Christmas tree to read the entire Christmas story in the gospel of Luke as a great way to celebrate the birth of Christ.
Learn More About The Advent Season
What Does Advent Mean?
Advent literally means arrival. In this season we celebrate both the arrival of Christ in the Manger and Christ’s second coming, the redemption of all things.
When Does The Advent Season Start and End?
The Advent season begins after Christ The King . The Advent season stretches across four Sundays. It is a common misconception that Advent lasts 24 days starting on December 1st and lasting through the month of December.
|2023||Sunday December 3, 2023||Sunday December 24, 2023|
|2024||Sunday December 1, 2024||Tuesday December 24, 2024|
|2025||Sunday November 30th, 2025||Wednesday December 24, 2025|
|2026||Sunday November 29th, 2026||Thursday December 24th, 2026|
|2027||Sunday November 28th, 2027||Friday December 24th, 2027|
What Are The Four Themes of Advent?
Traditionally in the Advent season there are four themes that corresponds with each Sunday in Advent.
To learn more about the themes check out my blog post on The Tradition of the Advent Wreath and How to DIY Your Own
Who Celebrates Advent?
Advent is a Christian holiday and is a season of spiritual preparation. Traditionally it has only been the Catholic, Orthodox, Anglican and Lutheran denomination that celebrate the Advent season. However Advent in current years has been growing more popular across many more Christian denominations.
How Can I Celebrate Advent Besides The Advent Bible Reading Plan?
The Advent season is our families favourite liturgical season! If you are looking for more than using a advent calendar, I go more in depth about how we celebrate in this post on An Advent Revival: Our Family Traditions and Resources for This Advent Season
Where Do We Find Advent In The Bible?
In Isaiah 7:14, shows the foreshadowing and anticipation for the Advent of the Messiah.
“Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign; the young woman, pregnant and about to bear a son, shall name him Emmanuel. “~Isaiah 7:14
In Matthew 1:18-25 is the Advent story.
“Now the birth of Jesus the Messiah took place in this way. When his mother Mary had been engaged to Joseph, but before they lived together, she was found to be with child from the Holy Spirit. Her husband Joseph, being a righteous man and unwilling to expose her to public disgrace, planned to dismiss her quietly. But just when he had resolved to do this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, “Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife, for the child conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. She will bear a son, and you are to name him Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.” All this took place to fulfill what had been spoken by the Lord through the prophet:
“Look, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and they shall name him Emmanuel,”
which means, “God is with us.” When Joseph awoke from sleep, he did as the angel of the Lord commanded him; he took her as his wife, but had no marital relations with her until she had borne a son; and he named him Jesus.”~ Matthew 1:18-25