Symbolism and Meaning: Advent Candles
Christians around the world light traditional Advent candles to observe the coming of Christ who is the light of the world. Advent wreaths are found in churches and homes and mark each Sunday in the Advent season.
In the Lutheran church, three purple or blue candles match the liturgical color of Advent. Blue symbolizes anticipation and hope. Violet or purple Advent candles are a symbol of royalty and recognize Advent as a time of preparation and repentance.
Pink is the Christian symbol or joy. Each candle is a step prepares for the celebration of the birth of the baby Jesus.
Meaning First Advent Candle: Hope (purple or blue)
This is often called the Prophecy candle, or the Candle of Hope and expectation. Advent is a season of expectation. Our hope comes from God who will fill all with joy and peace. So it is appropriate that the second Advent candle symbolizes peace.
Second Advent Candle Represents: Peace (purple or blue)
Peace on earth, goodwill to men with the love of Jesus and the promise of a Savior who would be born in Bethlehem. So appropriately the 2nd Advent candle is called the Candle of Preparation.
3rd Advent Candle Means Rejoice and JOY! (pink or rose)
Why is the third Advent candle pink? Pink or rose is a church liturgical color that signifies JOY.
On the third Sunday of Advent, the Candle of Joy or the Shepherd candle is lite. The shepherds received a message of joy. It is a time to rejoice during this time for the coming of the Lord is coming soon. The theme of the third Sunday in Advent is “rejoice in joy” and the Latin word is Gaudete and found originally in Phillippians 4:4.
4th Candle of Advent: Love (purple or blue)
The meaning of the fourth Advent candle is love. It is also referred to as the Angel Candle or Candle of Love and lite on the last Sunday of Advent. With it the Angel’s announce the birth of the baby Jesus.
“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” John 3:16
5th Candle of Advent: Christ Candle (white)
Many Advent wreaths also contain a 5th candle often referred to as the Christ candle or Christmas candle. On Christmas morning it is lit and completes the season of Advent with the birth of the baby Jesus. The white candle of Christmas stands in the center of the wreath, just like Christ should stand in the center of our lives.
It is white to reminds us that Jesus is the spotless lamb of God. Clean, sinless, without blemish or stain. Jesus washes us our sins and makes us clean and without stains through the forgiveness of sin.
Meaning of the Advent Candles represents the hope, peace, joy, love of Christ.
The story of the Advent wreath tells the journey of hope of the people of Israel in a Savior. It represents the peace that comes in the joy of receiving Jesus Christ our Savior and the love of Christ for everyone.
Advent Devotional Readings: Monday, 2nd Week Advent
Reading for the 2nd Week Advent, Monday: Malachi 4: 1-6
Daily Lectionary: Isaiah 28: 14-29; 13; 1 John 5: 1-21