The Old Testament lectionary reading appointed for the day comes from the book of the prophet Isaiah, chapter 42, verses 1-9:
But here is my servant, the one I uphold;
my chosen, who brings me delight.
I’ve put my spirit upon him;
he will bring justice to the nations.
He won’t cry out or shout aloud
or make his voice heard in public.
He won’t break a bruised reed;
he won’t extinguish a faint wick,
but he will surely bring justice.
He won’t be extinguished or broken
until he has established justice in the land.
The coastlands await his teaching.
God the Lord says—
the one who created the heavens,
the one who stretched them out,
the one who spread out the earth and its offspring,
the one who gave breath to its people
and life to those who walk on it—
I, the Lord, have called you for a good reason.
I will grasp your hand and guard you,
and give you as a covenant to the people,
as a light to the nations,
to open blind eyes, to lead the prisoners from prison,
and those who sit in darkness from the dungeon.
I am the Lord;
that is my name;
I don’t hand out my glory to others
or my praise to idols.
The things announced in the past—look—they’ve already happened,
but I’m declaring new things.
Before they even appear,
I tell you about them. (CEB)
The prophet's word is from YHWH, of course, the Ancient of Days, the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, who blessed this family, the people Israel, to be a blessing to all the nations. We have gathered this morning to worship this same God because we have seen the beginning of these new things: God in Christ is with us as one of us, and he is on his way to Jerusalem.
Do you want to know this justice? Follow Jesus. Do you want, along with the blind, to see? Follow Jesus. Do you want, with the prisoners, to experience freedom? Then follow Jesus on this way.
As brothers and sisters in his church, we are on this journey together, and we gather to learn this way. We begin our hour of worship with a hymn of praise to the “the one who created the heavens, the one who stretched them out, the one who spread out the earth and its offspring, the one who gave breath to its people and life to those who walk on it.” Hymn number 64, “Holy, Holy, Holy, Lord God Almighty.”