The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me, because the Lord has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor.
He has sent me to bind up the broken-hearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favour and the day of vengeance of our God, to comfort all who mourn, and provide for those who grieve in Zion—to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of joy 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 splendour.
This was the first text that was cited by Jesus in the synagogue when he started his ministry. This is according to Luke 4:16-22, Jesus spoke in the synagogue of Nazareth, His hometown. He opened up the scroll to Isaiah 61 – perhaps an assigned reading, perhaps chosen by Him – and read from the beginning of the chapter through the first line of verse 2. When He sat down, He simply said today this Scripture is fulfilled in your hearing. Jesus is the person described in Isaiah 61:1-3 and He is the one the Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon. This text serves as the outline or manifesto of Jesus´ ministry and this is exactly what he came to do. The text referred to the messiah who was to come and redeem the world and we see this fulfillment of the coming messiah in Jesus Christ. He is the Messiah coming to heal the damage that sin brings. Sin has done great damage, so there needs to be a great work of redemption. This is the most cited text by liberation theologians and truly in it we see the redemptive plan of God. What did he come to do? 1. To build up broken-hearted; we live in a world where people have broken hearts because of various issues ranging from death, sickness, wars, and conflicts. This is the reality we live in and our hope is in Jesus Christ who can heal those hearts. 2. Proclaim freedom from captives; we are captives physically and spiritually. We are captives to sin, we are captives to the systems we created, we are captives to our wealth, we are captives to poverty, and we are captives to our cultures and traditions. We cannot redeem ourselves from those things and our only hope comes from Jesus Christ. 3. To release darkness for the prisoners; we know prisoners who are in physical prisons but we are prisoners of sin and that has kept us in darkness. It is only Christ who can redeem us. 4. To proclaim the year of the Lord; this is where our hope is. We are waiting for this year on his final coming. This is the year we will all get final liberation. May the almighty God bless us all.
Let Us Pray
ALMIGHTY God, who hast poured upon us the new light of thine incarnate Word; Grant that the same light enkindled in our hearts may shine forth in our lives; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
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