Sunday, January 10, 2016

I will say to the north, "Give them up", and to the south, "Do not withhold"

Today's reading from Isaiah 43:1-7 might prophesy something for this week's Canterbury Bowl contestants.

1 But now thus says the Lord,
   he who created you, O Jacob,
   he who formed you, O Israel:
Do not fear, for I have redeemed you;
   I have called you by name, you are mine.
2 When you pass through the waters, I will be with you;
   and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you;
when you walk through fire you shall not be burned,
   and the flame shall not consume you.
3 For I am the Lord your God,
   the Holy One of Israel, your Saviour.
I give Egypt as your ransom,
   Ethiopia and Seba in exchange for you.
4 Because you are precious in my sight,
   and honoured, and I love you,
I give people in return for you,
   nations in exchange for your life.
5 Do not fear, for I am with you;
   I will bring your offspring from the east,
   and from the west I will gather you;
6 I will say to the north, ‘Give them up’,
   and to the south, ‘Do not withhold;
bring my sons from far away
   and my daughters from the end of the earth— 
7 everyone who is called by my name,
   whom I created for my glory,
   whom I formed and made.’

This week the Anglicans of the world will gather in Canterbury, and it remains to be seen exactly what will or will not happen.

A modern day Isaiah might say that it is time for the North (CofE, TEc, and Canada) to "Give them up" and let their dissenting churches go.

He might also say that it is time for the Global South to not withhold its call for repentance from the wayward North. 

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