Word for the day by Christian Education Forum
RELEASING THE BURDENED
“Here is my servant, whom I uphold, my chosen one in whom I delight; I will put my Spirit on him, and he will bring justice to the nations. (Isaiah 42:1)The passage talks about the Babylonian exile experiences of the Jewish people and God’s redemptive action through his anointed – the Servant of YHWH. This is the first of four Isaiah’s Servant songs. In the presentation of the Servant attention is given to the divine chosenness, his endowment with the spirit, his unassuming character and gentleness, his mission of establishing justice and his persistence. These are beautiful poems about our Lord Jesus Christ that reveal his character and mission.
The Servant’s ministry is for establishing Justice: Isaiah foretold ‘He brings justice, He will neither waver nor be crushed until true justice is established on earth’. What is justice? In Biblical sense, justice is meeting need wherever it exists and particularly where it exists most helplessly. Christ was commissioned to bring justice not to the selected few but to all because, God does not have favorites- Jesus Christ is Lord of all human. Though Jesus mission was for all, He was commissioned to bring justice particularly to sinners, to the poor and the little ones of society. If we are convinced that God has chosen us as his servants and has put his spirit when we were baptized, the question we must ask is, to what extent are we ready to identify ourselves with the poor in order to relieve their burdens as much as we can? How deeply are we involved in the plight of people in order to bring light where there is darkness and ignorance, sight where there is blindness and racism, and freedom where there is oppression and ill treatment? When we experience God’s favor resting on us and his spirit overshadowing us, we can go forth and do battle as Jesus did.
The Servant’s ministry with great tenderness. There are many ‘bruised reeds’ people buffeted and damaged by the circumstances of life. There are many ‘smoldering wicks’ people who feel the flame of their life has almost gone. We have all been there. What is his ministry to us at such a time? It is never to break and never to snuff out, but always to heal, revive and restore. Israel was in exile as Isaiah wrote this and he looks confidently ahead to a day of restoration and healing. His ministry through his people is the result and evidence of his ministry to them. The metaphors change but the idea is the same. It is through his people that God opens the eyes of the blind, frees the captives from the prison and release those who sit in darkness. How descriptive these images are of our world, and how challenging they are to our role with in it. The richer God’s work in us, the richer His work through us. He is working in us to make us a blessing to others.
Prayer: Dear Lord, use us as your servants, that we may heal the broken hearted with tenderness and compassion. Amen.
Rev. Abraham Oommen,
Ebenezer & St. Andrews MTC, New York