Lectionary for January 20, 2019
Second Sunday after the Epiphany, Series C, ESV
Isaiah 62:1-5, Zion's Coming Salvation
The purpose of the book of Isaiah was to comfort God's people with the good news of Zion's eventual redemption. In verse 1, God will not keep quiet until Zion's salvation goes forth as a burning torch. Proverbs 4:18
Getting a new name, verse 2, is a mark of God's blessings throughout scripture that demonstrates a change in status or character. Genesis 17:3-8; Genesis 17:15-16; Genesis 32:28; John 1:42; Matthew 16:18-19
Zion shall no longer be termed Forsaken, verse 4. Isaiah 54:6-8, Hosea 1:10 and 1 Peter 2:9-10 are clarifying passages.
In verse 5, the Hebrew verb for marry means "to take possession of a woman in marriage." Surviving sons of Israel will again claim Zion and the Promised Land.
Psalm 128, Blessed is Everyone Who Fears the Lord
Psalms 120-134 are known as the "Psalms of Ascents," based on their titles. Exact meaning of the title is unknown, but two possibilities are likely. "Ascents" could refer to the 15 steps in the temple between the Court of the Women and the Court of the Israelites. The psalms were perhaps read or sung on the steps during the great festivals. The title could also refer to the religious pilgrimages each year going up to Jerusalem. There psalms would be sung as the worshipers approached Jerusalem's hills.
Verse 1, Blessed is everyone who fears the Lord. The Hebrew word for fear is yare' as in "fear the Lord" and "fear God" a common expression in the Psalms. They mean to "trust in the Lord." Psalm 34:8-14 walk in his ways, what are His ways? Psalm 119:1-3
Isaiah 3:10-11 provides a complementary look at verse 2, You shall eat the fruit of the labor of your hands .
In verse 3, the blessings of wife and children are compared to the most important fruit-bearing plants, which fill the house with life.
from Zion , verse 5, see Psalm 9:11. God's heavenly throne (Psalm 9:7) in Zion has its counterpart on earth in His temple at Jerusalem.
1 Corinthians 12:1-11, Spiritual Gifts
In verse 1, Paul addresses spiritual gifts in his letter to the Corinthians so the young congregation will not be uninformed. What concerns do we see in verses 2 and 3 that may help explain why Paul felt he needed to provide instruction on this subject?
Romans 12:4-8 and Ephesians 4:4-6 expand on verse 4, Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit .
If you were to sum up verses 4-7, what might you say?
In verses 8-10, the key point of these passages is that the one Holy Spirit produces all these works through the "spiritual" of the congregation. Therefore, these callings and gifts are not to divide God's people.
In verse 9, faith is listed as a spiritual gift. Not the gift of saving faith, but the faith found in Matthew 17:14-20.
What are some examples of the gift of the working of miracles found in verse 10? Mark 16:16-18 What is the difference between the gifts ofprophecy and various kinds of tongues? 1 Corinthians 14:2-5
John 2:1-11, The Wedding at Cana
Cana was located 9 miles north of Nazareth, a day's journey.
wine , verse 3, is symbolic in the Old Testament of physical and spiritual joy: Genesis 27:28; Ecclesiastes 9:7; future hope: Isaiah 25:6; Joel 2:19; Zechariah 10:6-7; and abundance: Joel 2:24, 3:18; Amos 9:13. Running out of wine or having wine of poor quality at a wedding was a social blunder.
In verse 4, Jesus said, My hour has not yet come. Here are some other situations where these words were used. John 7:25-31, 8:12-20, 13:1
Mark 7:3-4 further expands on the Jewish rites of purification mentioned in verse 6.
Significantly, who is first to witness the miracle? Verse 9