Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Isaiah's role in Advent: Daily Mass Homily--Tuesday, December 2nd, 2014

(Listen to this homily here).

           We’ll be hearing a lot from the prophet Isaiah during Advent.  More than any other prophet, his words prophesy the coming of the Messiah.
            Today he states, “On that day, A shoot shall sprout from the stump of Jesse, and from his roots a bud shall blossom.  The Spirit of the LORD shall rest upon him…”  Isaiah is the one who prophesied, “Behold, a young woman shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.”  His writings are featured in Handel’s Messiah: “Unto us a child is born.
            Where Isaiah’s prophecies were particularly accurate was in the fact that he foretold the Messiah who would come to suffer for his people.  In his four servant songs (poems) he spoke about how the Christ would suffer, shed his blood and die for his people.
            What fascinates me is that these prophecies were uttered several hundred years before Jesus came.  Everyone who came before Christ was in a long Advent!  Jesus alludes to this reality: “Blessed are the eyes that see what you see.  For I say to you, many prophets and kings desired to see what you see, but did not see it, and to hear what you hear, but did not hear it…”
            Our season of Advent is different from the first long one for two reasons.  First, ours is only three and a half weeks!  And second, we know how the season ends—Jesus Christ did indeed come as a baby.
            Meditate on these realities today.  Recognize how blessed we are to know Jesus is coming and allow this season to help you prepare well for Christmas.

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