2nd Week of Advent (A) : Tuesday 6th December 2022

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St Nicholas, bishop

2nd Week of Advent (A) : Tuesday 6th December 2022

Is. 40:1-1
1; Ps. 95:1-3,10-13;
Mt. 18:12-14 (Ps. Wk. II)

The passage from the Book of Isaiah expresses the sentiments of the prophet who proclaims the release of the Israelites from exile in Babylon. According to historical records, Cyrus, king of Persia, signed the decree to end the exile.

The prophet, however, claims that there is a more fundamental cause for the release from exile and that the decree of God in the heavenly council has made it possible. This is manifested by the fact that it is the angel in heaven who implements the divine decree.

The angel announces that “the way of the Lord” be prepared so that the triumphal process of God to the city of Jerusalem may take place. The liberation of Israel is viewed as a revelation of God, and that all human beings would see the glory of God. The prophet bases his exhortation on the assurance that God is with the people of Israel with power and loving care.

The Gospel passage also compares God to a shepherd who reaches out to those sheep that stray. The return of the “strays” gives great joy to God. This applies to Jesus’ action as a shepherd who acts against all human reasoning by leaving ninety-nine safe sheep to seek the one that has strayed. In the same way, Christians, too, are to care more for the weak disciples among them. Like the shepherd, they should experience more joy in actively saving the endangered sheep than in passively tending the sheep who are safe.

Lord, You are indeed my shepherd.

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