Sunday, December 9, 2007

Advent 2

Today's text was Isaiah 11:1-10.

Isaiah here (and elsewhere--chs. 7-12) prophesies of Jesus Christ. This text dates ca. 735-733 B.C.--a mere decade before the fall of Israel; after 586 B.C., the whole kingdom certainly looked like a stump. The Messiah is like no other earthly king; His kingdom is like no other earthly kingdom, as shown by the reading. Not just a "nice" king, but Savior of the world!

Sevenfold Spirit--v. 2. "Fear of the LORD" = proper respect for the almighty God. By Is. 9 we are sure that Jesus is God. Liberation theology (that God prefers the poor because they are poor) is a misunderstanding of God's orders to defend the oppressed OF THE FAITHFUL. Isaiah condemns the materialism and injustice exhibited chiefly by the rich in Judah and Israel.

Do not remain in sin, for Christ will judge with fairness. His kingdom (vv. 6-9) will be one of peace and perfection. Let it bring joy and wonder to your life. But it'll be in the new heavens and earth, not in this present world. Best: we'll see God face to face! Saving knowledge of Christ (v. 10) has spread throughout the world, but right now it is imperfect. Later it will be complete and perfect. God will be glorified because of His banner, Christ Jesus. Gather around Him in Communion--a foretaste of the glorious feast to come. Rest in Him.

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