Scripture Reading: Isaiah 61:10-62:3
I will greatly rejoice in the Lord,
my whole being shall exult in my God;
for he has clothed me with the garments of salvation,
he has covered me with the robe of righteousness,
as a bridegroom decks himself with a garland,
and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels.
For as the earth brings forth its shoots,
and as a garden causes what is sown in it to spring up,
o the Lord God will cause righteousness and praise
to spring up before all the nations. –Isaiah 61:10-11
Funny how our brains work—when I first viewed these two verses, I thought how long they were. My immediate next thought was the remembrance that the shortest verse in the Bible is Jesus wept (John 11:35). I have not completed a complete comparison of the lengths of all the Bible verses. I placed my faith in unknown scholars who met my criteria as valid sources. I was also taught that the Bible in its original languages had no chapters and verses. These additions were made by humans to make the Bible conform to the ways of the people. Although I have read some of the books not selected for inclusion in the Bible, I generally accept that the compilers picked the right ones including the Book of Isaiah. I am human, and I make mistakes at times, so I think all humans make mistakes now and then. I do have faith that God continues active and engaged in our lives and we see that activity clearer at sometimes more than at others. God forgives us for our mistakes, helps us recover from them, and when we let God, God will guide us in ways to prevent the same mistake from happening again.
This may seem like a strange meditation for Christmas Day, but it is what Christ’s coming to be with us is all about. He became the Word And the Word became flesh and lived among us, and we have seen his glory, the glory as of a father’s only son, full of grace and truth. (John 1:14) The Bible is the source of strength and enlightenment about the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus the Christ. He is the Word toward which we strive that establishes the righteousness and justice of God. The Bible is an excellent source of knowledge about the works of God designed to enhance our lives in Christ every day as we seek to follow the Word in our lives.
While God wants us to each and all strive to be the people we were created to be, God recognized the need to dwell among us as we struggle to be God’s conduit to bring righteousness and praise to spring up before all the nations.
Prayer: O come, O Come Emmanuel. Amen
All scriptures are quoted from the New Revised Standard Version Bible: Anglicized Edition, copyright 1989, 1995, Division of Christian Education of the National Council of Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights are reserved.