Friday after the Twenty-Sixth Sunday after Trinity Sunday
Scripture: Isaiah 60:7-22 (NKJV)
7 “All the flocks of Kedar shall be gathered together to you, the rams of Nebaioth shall minister to you; They shall ascend with acceptance on My altar, and I will glorify the house of My glory.
8 “Who are these who fly like a cloud, and like doves to their roosts?
9 “Surely the coastlands shall wait for Me; And the ships of Tarshish will come first, to bring your sons from afar, their silver and their gold with them, to the name of the LORD your God, and to the Holy One of Israel, because He has glorified you.
10 “The sons of foreigners shall build up your walls, and their kings shall minister to you; For in My wrath I struck you, but in My favor I have had mercy on you.
11 “Therefore your gates shall be open continually; They shall not be shut day or night, that men may bring to you the wealth of the Gentiles, and their kings in procession.
12 “For the nation and kingdom which will not serve you shall perish, and those nations shall be utterly ruined.
13 “The glory of Lebanon shall come to you, the cypress, the pine, and the box tree together, to beautify the place of My sanctuary; And I will make the place of My feet glorious.
14 “Also the sons of those who afflicted you shall come bowing to you, and all those who despised you shall fall prostrate at the soles of your feet; And they shall call you the City of the LORD, Zion of the Holy One of Israel.
15 “Whereas you have been forsaken and hated, so that no one went through you, I will make you an eternal excellence, a joy of many generations.
16 “You shall drink the milk of the Gentiles, and milk the breast of kings; You shall know that I, the LORD, am your Savior and your Redeemer, the Mighty One of Jacob.
17 “Instead of bronze I will bring gold, instead of iron I will bring silver, instead of wood, bronze, and instead of stones, iron. I will also make your officers peace, and your magistrates righteousness.
18 “Violence shall no longer be heard in your land, neither wasting nor destruction within your borders; But you shall call your walls Salvation, and your gates Praise.
19 “The sun shall no longer be your light by day, nor for brightness shall the moon give light to you; But the LORD will be to you an everlasting light, and your God your glory.
20 “Your sun shall no longer go down, nor shall your moon withdraw itself; For the LORD will be your everlasting light, and the days of your mourning shall be ended.
21 “Also your people shall all be righteous; They shall inherit the land forever, the branch of My planting, the work of My hands, that I may be glorified.
22 “A little one shall become a thousand, and a small one a strong nation. I, the LORD, will hasten it in its time.”
Following the reception of Christ’s Body and Blood in the Divine Service, we sing the Nunc Dimittis which speaks of Jesus, “a Light to lighten the Gentiles and the Glory of Thy people Israel.” In Isaiah 60, we have the repeated announcement that God is going to glorify the Old Testament people. When Jesus is revealed, God glorifies His nation with the Promised Savior. As Jesus, Himself, said, “…for salvation is of the Jews” (John 4:22).
The prophet Isaiah speaks of great offerings, which having been brought by the Gentiles, are received “with acceptance on My altar” (40:7). Knowing that only ceremonially clean Jews were allowed to bring Old Testament sacrifices, this statement of acceptable Gentile offering is quite unusual. We must remember that the teaching of the Old Testament had enlightened these Gentiles. Isaiah says, “You shall know that I, the LORD, am your Savior and your Redeemer, the Mighty One of Jacob” (Is. 60:16). Thus, it was through faith in Jesus Christ that their eucharistic thank offerings were acceptable (Heb. 11:6).
It was Isaiah who saw the sunless and moonless temple in Heaven, years before the Apostle John tells us about it in Revelation 21:22-27. Our Lord Jesus is the everlasting Light and the Glory of the Temple. God’s Old Testament people were glorified by the gift of the Savior, and we, God’s New Testament people, were enlightened by this Savior. They look forward and we look backward to our Savior—the joy of many generations.
We pray: Heavenly Father, let us depart in peace knowing that through faith in Christ we will enjoy the eternal rest prepared for us by the work of Your hands.