December 28, 2011

Fifth Day of Christmas

Lectionary

Morning – Ps. 27, Is. 56:1-8, 1Jn. 1
Evening – Ps. 20, Is. 57:13, Heb. 1

It is difficult to refrain from commenting on 1 John 1 and Hebrews 1. Both are important chapters of important books. But I will contain myself and concentrate on Isaiah. Chapters 56 and 57 continue the message of God’s grace and forgiveness. But His mercy is not confined to the Jews alone. His House is a house of prayer for all people. “Whosoever will may come” to Him and find mercy and hope and peace and forgiveness. This theme is carried through chapter 57 where it is well stated in verse 19. Those who are near are the Jews left in Jerusalem after the conquest by Babylon. Those who are far off are those living in captivity in Babylon. But the meaning looks beyond Babylon and Judea to the reign of the Messiah who extends His mercy both to the Jews (those who are near) and to the Gentiles (those who are far off)

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