Fr. James' Lectionary

The Lectionary is both a reading program for completing all of Holy Scripture on a one year schedule, and a daily comment on a portion of the day's reading wedded to a poem to give an added perspective on the theme.

Location: Amherst, Virginia, United States

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Cost of Discipleship

Daily Readings
Psalm 36 Genesis 30 Isaiah 31 Acts 28

Daily Text: Isaiah 31

Cost of Discipleship
This chapter makes sense if verses 6, 7 are treated as a parenthesis. It is an important parenthesis, but taking it out of the flow of the chapter allows for the following reading. Woe is Judah who has gone to Egypt for protection against Assyria. The LORD is the only sure protection. He will fight for Jerusalem and then Assyria will fall. The parenthesis fits into the logic of the passage because it is the repentance of Judah that is required for the LORD to throw his ‘weight’ towards Judah.
The phrase in vs. 2 that the LORD will ‘not call back his words….’ is a reaffirmation that God’s loyalties are fixed, were fixed when he first covenanted with Abraham, with Moses, with David…. Once his loyalties were fixed they stand fast. Later condemnation, like seen in this chapter, when he promises Judah that they will fall with their Egyptian allies, is only a temporary step on the road of a permanent commitment.

I Am The Last
Edward Shillito

Stricken to earth, the sword snapped in his hand,
Shield cast away, down-beaten to the knee,
He sees the foes he made above him stand—
Now he has only Me.

The towers are fallen; at his feet they lie
Wrecks of the hopes that now he will not see,
Naked unto the blast, Death drawing nigh—
Now he has only Me.

But he has Me. The last illusions fade,
The trumpet sounds no more, and man, set free
From tyranny of dreams his pride has made,
At last has only Me.

For many loves he now has only one,
His many gods before the tempest flee,
His light is dying, and his day is done,
But he at last has Me.

Collect for the Day
God of justice and mercy, open the eyes of sinners that they may see the light of your truth, know the power of your love, and share in the bounty of your heavenly table; through Jesus Christ our Saviour. [476:749:36, Psalm prayer]


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