Jesus makes God’s church alive. He talks about “rebuilding ancient ruins.” Isaiah sees the
day when the city of Jerusalem which now lies in ruins will be rebuilt and once again be the
place where all peoples can go to find hope in the God of Israel. The prophet sees the new
testament church thriving because we are alive to serve our God. Can’t we have such optimism
here? Can’t we see that God has enabled us to grow his kingdom here in Martinez? There is so
much to do! God urges a rebuilding. That starts with renewed zeal to grow in your faith through
the Word of God. Rebuilding continues with renewed energy to share the faith we confess and
to work together to be a beacon of hope for people in our community through the Word we have
to offer to all. Your encouragement is utterly necessary for the well-being of all our members.
Our rebuilding efforts will be only as successful as our spiritual growth. Jesus prepares God’s
people for service by getting us into God’s Word.
“Grace be unto you and peace from God our Father and from our Lord and Savior, Jesus
The Spirit of the Sovereign LORD is on me,
because the LORD has anointed me
to preach good news to the poor.
He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted,
to proclaim freedom for the captives
and release from darkness for the prisoners,
2 to proclaim the year of the LORD’s favor
and the day of vengeance of our God,
to comfort all who mourn,
3 and provide for those who grieve in Zion—
to bestow on them a crown of beauty
instead of ashes,
the oil of gladness
instead of mourning,
and a garment of praise
instead of a spirit of despair.
They will be called oaks of righteousness,
a planting of the LORD
for the display of his splendor.
4 They will rebuild the ancient ruins
and restore the places long devastated;
they will renew the ruined cities
that have been devastated for generations.
5 Aliens will shepherd your flocks;
foreigners will work your fields and vineyards.
6 And you will be called priests of the LORD,
you will be named ministers of our God.
You will feed on the wealth of nations,
and in their riches you will boast.
“We want the best. We want it fast and we want it cheap.” That little slogan can work for
most of us whether it comes to our fast food order, or our prerequisites for some new appliance
or even a new car! We want the best. We want it fast and we want it cheap. Sadly, that is also a
slogan that some corporations use when looking for their next hire. We want the best. We want if
fast and we want it cheap. So, with expectations sky high, the hunt begins to find the perfect fit.
The people were all waiting for the Messiah. They wanted the best. They wanted one that
would make life easy. They wanted one who would place no demands on them. In many ways
they wanted the best. They wanted him fast and they wanted him cheap. But God describes the
Messiah for his Church far differently in the words of our text. The pen belongs to Isaiah. But the
speaker is Jesus, 750 years before his birth. He confirms that truth in the gospel lesson today.