Second Sunday After Epiphany: The Old Testament Passage – Being the beloved of the Lord

For Zion’s sake I will not keep silent, and for Jerusalem’s sake I will not rest, until her vindication shines out like the dawn, and her salvation like a burning torch.” (Isaiah 62:1)

I was trying to figure out to say about this passage, how to approach it. I wondered if I needed to consult my favorite bible commentator to find out what he had to say. Then I thought struck me – a thought that could only be the Divine because of its simplicity but depth. “Substitute your own name for Zion and Jerusalem”!

“For Carole’s sake I will not keep silent, and for Carole’s sake I will not rest, until her vindication shines out like the dawn, and her salvation like a burning torch.” If this is a promised that the Divine will fulfill for all of us if we but come to God and confess our sins, being humble and contrite concerning what we have done – every person on this earth should confess to the Lord and gladly do penance!

“The nations shall see your vindication, and all the kings your glory; and you shall be called by a new name that the mouth of the Lord will give.” (Verse 2)

Put your own name, beloved reader, the place of Zion/Jerusalem. And the Lord will give you a new name, a name that shows how beloved you are!

“You shall be a crown of beauty in the hand of the Lord, and a royal diadem in the hand of your God.” (Verse 3)

A “diadem”, if you did not know, is a crown or tiara as royalty would wear.

“You shall no more be termed Forsaken, and your land shall no more be termed Desolate; but you shall be called My Delight Is in Her, and your land Married; for the Lord delights in you, and your land shall be married.” (Verse 4)

For this verse, verse 4, I needed to go to consult Barnes. The idea and meaning is that the Hebrews were feeling abandoned by God, as if they were a wife tossed out of her household by her husband. She would have nothing – no home or shelter, no name or recognition in society, no recourse to have the wrongs done to her righted, nor any promise of being able to survive and yet maintain her dignity and good name. The imagery of a marriage is often used when talking about a relationship with God, because it was the image of a truly intimate and deeply personal relationship. Yes, for men, the imagery is harder to entire into. But for men, it would be just as devastating to be abandoned with no hope for the future. Perhaps, in that case, the imagery of such abandonment is more frightening for men because they could not imagine it.

“For as a young man marries a young woman, so shall your builder marry you, and as the bridegroom rejoices over the bride, so shall your God rejoice over you.” (Verse 5)

Again, the imagery of a marriage is used; this time the relationship of newlyweds were any flaws or faults are over looked. And only tender all-consuming love is present. Who would not want to be loved like that! It is the stuff of romance and passion.

May you, beloved reader, be so loved and accepted by your Lord. Selah!

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About Carole Boshart

I have two blogs on WordPress. "A Simple Desire" which is based on the daily "Sips of Scripture" published and sent out by Third Way Cafe. "Pondering From the Pacific" is based on my reflections on the world - sometimes religious/spiritual, and sometimes not so much.

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