Happy Saturday all! Sorry for the delay…I hope you have had a great morning so far!
Isaiah 61:1-4New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)
The spirit of the Lord God is upon me,
because the Lord has anointed me;
he has sent me to bring good news to the oppressed,
to bind up the brokenhearted,
to proclaim liberty to the captives,
and release to the prisoners;
2 to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor,
and the day of vengeance of our God;
to comfort all who mourn;
3 to provide for those who mourn in Zion—
to give them a garland instead of ashes,
the oil of gladness instead of mourning,
the mantle of praise instead of a faint spirit.
They will be called oaks of righteousness,
the planting of the Lord, to display his glory.
4 They shall build up the ancient ruins,
they shall raise up the former devastations;
they shall repair the ruined cities,
the devastations of many generations.
Isaiah proclaims these words that later on, when Jesus is starting his ministry, he will read from a scroll and proclaim that this time has come. The prophet proclaims that with the spirit of God we have obligations to keep. I love this scripture. This scripture calls together all those who need to hear a rally cry. Yesterday we looked at a different prophet who called upon God and yelled out for justice. I shared with you some stuff going on in our community. Thank you for responding with care and awesome words! A petition on care.org was started and we have over 400 signatures to the petition to the city to not kick out our homeless in the middle of December especially. I am touched by those joining with us in prayer and sharing the word.
Isaiah is a different kind of prophet although parts of Isaiah are probably written close to the same time. The book of Isaiah happens during three different times. We call them Isaiah 1, Isaiah 2 and Isaiah 3…parts are written pre exile, during the exile and post exile.
Isaiah is a major prophet who, I think, holds a lot of hope but also a call to justice in definite ways. I look at this scripture today as a call to be God’s people in specific ways. If you needed a checklist as to what we are called to be and do,this is a good one. It is so good that it defines Jesus’ ministry for us as the congregation.
We have been anointed, marked, shown how to be disciples with this checklist. What a good time of year to remind ourselves!
-proclaim good news to oppressed, the year of the lord, liberty to captives, release
-repair and restore
This list encourages us past Habbakuk into positive action….fruitful conversations, caring for the marginalized and calling on community to build up and repair.
This scripture gives me great hope for what a community can accomplish with God’s anointing. May it be so.