Year C – Second Sunday After Epiphany – Is 62:1–5

Is 62:1–5 NRSV – “1 For Zion’s sake I will not keep silent, and for Jerusalem’s sake I will not rest, until her vindication shines out like the dawn, and her salvation like a burning torch. 2 The nations shall see your vindication, and all the kings your glory; and you shall be called by a new name that the mouth of the LORD will give. 3 You shall be a crown of beauty in the hand of the LORD, and a royal diadem in the hand of your God. 4 You shall no more be termed Forsaken, and your land shall no more be termed Desolate; but you shall be called My Delight Is in Her, and your land Married; for the LORD delights in you, and your land shall be married. 5 For as a young man marries a young woman, so shall your builder marry you, and as the bridegroom rejoices over the bride, so shall your God rejoice over you.”

Summary – This prophecy speaks to the time of Israel’s exile and here God promises that the nations will see the vindication of the Lord. Whereas before God sent judgment and Israel was scattered, the Lord promises that Israel will be vindicated or declared to be “in the right.” She will be given a new name. No more forsaken or desolate, Zion will be a “crown of beauty” and “royal diadem” in the hand of the Lord. The Lord delights in Zion and will rejoice over Zion.

Insight – Sometimes in the old movies about cowboys and Indians, a “white man” hero who helps the Indians is given a new name. After going through a terrible ordeal, the Indians recognize his heroism by awarding him an honorary place in their tribe. “Now we call you, Running White Bear.” In the times of the Bible, names related to anticipated or present character. So in this prophecy Jerusalem being given a new name means she will have a vindicated or righteous character. Ultimately this promise is fulfilled in that the Church has become the Bride of Christ. She will be changed and like a glorious crown to the Lord. She will show forth God’s glorious splendor and the LORD delights in her.

Catechism – What should God’s people believe about themselves? That the LORD delights in them.

Discussion – What new name would you like to receive? How would it show your character?

Prayer – Heavenly Father we thank you that you promised to vindicate your people and that happened through what Christ accomplished for us on the cross. Now we rejoice that you delight in us through our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.


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