Tuesday, December 8, 2020

Wednesday prior to Advent 3


Isaiah 61:1–4, 8–11—God’s anointed messenger is here proclaimed. He will proclaim the good news of relief and release to the poor, the brokenhearted, the captives, those who are bound, and those who mourn. All these things describe us in our sinful state: We are poor, lacking the riches of fellowship with God, and thus brokenhearted; we are captives of, and in bondage to sin, and thus can only mourn our condition.

But the One whom the messenger proclaims will give us the oil of gladness instead of mourning, the garment of praise instead of a faint spirit, that we may be called oaks of righteousness.

This is the text for Jesus’ inaugural sermon at Nazareth (Luke 4). It gave the forecast of His ministry. This passages comes from the time when the Babylonian exiles returned to Judea and found their country in ruins. It constituted a message of good news of liberation and comfort. In Vv.10-11 we find Israel’s happy response to the glad tidings of salvation. The people rejoice in the LORD for His salvation and righteousness.

From the beginning God has been clothing His people. He made clothes for Adam and Eve. In this lesson the Servant rejoices that God has clothed him with garments fo salvation, the rob of righteousness, and adorned them as bride and groom. It is a dramatic moment when Christ puts on us His perfect rob of righteousness which covers up the filthy rags of our sin. Dressed in His rob, God the judge sees not us but Christ from whose sake then we are accepted.[1]  

A Prayer for grace and forgiveness: Spare us, O Lord, and mercifully forgive us our sins. Though by our continual transgressions we have merited Your chastisements, be gracious to us. Grant that all these punishments which we have deserved may not come upon us, but that all things may work to our everlasting good; through Jesus Christ, Your Son, our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, One God, now and forever.[2]

[1] Lectionary Preaching Workbook Series B John Brokhoff © 1980 CSS Publishing, Lima OH

[2] Collect for grace and forgiveness, Lutheran Service Book © 2006 Concordia Publishing House, St. Louis

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