The Holy Gospel: January 27, 2013 (Year C)

Read:  Luke 4:14-21

Meditation:  “The Fulfillment of Advent”

Some have called Jesus’ announcement in Nazareth the fulfillment of Advent.  The baby born in the stable is now the Messiah commissioned in the synagogue.

Jesus uses Isaiah’s words to define the moment, calling what’s going on “the acceptable year of the Lord”—a phrase Joseph Thayer takes to mean the day “when the salvation and free favors of God profusely abound.”  Cyril of Alexandria wrote of it this way:  “the time of the Lord–yes, the Son–had arrived” (Commentary on Luke, Homily 12).

God’s supernatural surprise.  Outpouring.  Hope.  Salvation.  All wrapped up in Jesus, the Word made flesh.  Anointed—to preach, to deliver, to heal, and to save.  Today’s lesson is God’s way of saying, “Let it begin!”

Just a few weeks ago, we made our journey to Bethlehem, joining with Mary and Joseph, the shepherds, and the wise men in celebrating Christ’s birth.  But Epiphany reminds us that we must not stay in Bethlehem.  Our faith begins there, but it cannot remain there.  We must journey to Nazareth and allow the babe to become the savior.






About Steve Harper

Retired seminary professor, who taught for 32 years in the disciplines of Spiritual Formation and Wesley Studies. Author and co-author of 42 books. Also a retired Elder in The Florida Annual Conference of The United Methodist Church.
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