The Second Sunday of Advent for Year B (December 7, 2014)

Time to change direction?

The Lectionary Lab

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Points for Preaching and Teaching
by the Rev. Dr. John Fairless

Isaiah‘s words — which contrast quite starkly with the apocalyptic tone of last week’s gospel reading — are all about comfort and atonement. The glory of the Lord that is about to be revealed, Isaiah says, will be about reward and recompense. That’s all good, right? Well, if you consider what it takes to level a mountain (“made low”) or to fill up a valley (“lifted up”) — I don’t know. Could be a little less gentle than we might imagine. Whatever else the result of this waiting season of Advent may be, when it is all said and done, we’ll be able to say, “Here is your God!” (v.9)

For the writer of Psalm 85, forgiveness and sin go hand-in-hand. When you have a…

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