Lectionary Year B
December 8, 2002
Second Sunday in Advent
Psalm 85:1-2, 8-13

Hermeneutical Bridge


The other texts of the RCL for this Sunday are Isaiah 40:1-11 (the call to make the LORD a way through the wilderness, with all flesh seeing Yahweh's glory); 2 Peter 3:8-15a (though the "day of the Lord" seems to tarry, it will come-- for the Lord's patience means salvation, so we are to look forward still to a new home), and Mark 1: 1-8.

The Gospel text has the beginning of the Good News in Mark's Gospel: the Baptist's call to repentance. John the Baptizer is spotlighted on this Sunday in Advent. Psalm 85 is a wistful appeal for God to again bless the land, with a prophetic and poetic vision of the form that blessing might take: faithfulness springs like a rich harvest from the land itself; righteousness and peace kiss.

What a compelling image! What would that "kiss" look like?

Was the "kiss" the loud call of the Baptizer to prepare for the coming kingdom by recognizing sin in one's life, repenting, and waiting...followed by "grace and truth" made flesh and dwelling with humanity in Jesus?

Is a "kiss" now the life of the Church of Jesus Christ at its very best-- when members live not only in search of holiness in behavior but also with a passion for serving in the Savior's name within their communities?

What would the "kiss" of righteousness and peace make a Christian long to see in small-town Navasota, TX...or inner city New Orleans/Chicago/etc...at Columbine High, East Timor, Kosovo, etc.?

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