New Heaven/New Earth
For I am about to create new heavens
and a new earth;
the former things shall not be remembered
or come to mind.
But be glad and rejoice for ever
in what I am creating;
for I am about to create Jerusalem as a joy,
and its people as a delight. Isaiah 65. 17 - 18
The reading appointed for today from the prophet Isaiah is a perfect illustration of why we call the scriptures a living document, speaking to us in different ways at different times in our lives. Here we have a prophecy made in about the 5th century BC, which Jesus would have known by heart, that responds precisely to his words and tears about the state of Jerusalem in Thursday's reading from the Gospel of Luke.
And here we are in the 21st century AD in the middle of a cease-fire in Gaza, with prisoners being exchanged, praying with all our might that there will be delight and joy in Jerusalem.
The New Testament reading from Revelation appointed for today ends the story of John of Patmos's great vision dream filled with description of what that holy city will look like when "the grace of the Lord Jesus will be with all the saints." And people wonder why we read the Bible!
Today there is dancing in the streets in the West Bank, in Gaza and in Tel Aviv...how long it lasts we do not know. But just as rainbows are fleeting, so moments of grace and peace must be shared and appreciated.
I pray that we might all have visions like rainbows in our lives today, that they will be reminders of God's great love for each of us and that they will send us out into the world to love accordingly. and may that Peace that passes ALL understanding be with us all now and forever. Amen