Thought of the day
Thursday, December 15, 2016

Thursday of the Third week of Advent

Eusebius of Caesarea (c.265-340), Bishop, theologian, historian Commentary on Isaiah 40

Thursday of the Third week of Advent

Commentary of the day
Eusebius of Caesarea (c.265-340), Bishop, theologian, historian 
Commentary on Isaiah 40

            “What did you go out to see in the desert?”

“A voice cries out: In the desert prepare the way of the Lord! Make straight in the wasteland a highway for our God!” (Isa 40:3) This word shows clearly that the events prophesied will not be accomplished in Jerusalem, but in the desert. The glory of the Lord will be revealed in the desert; and that is where “all flesh shall know God’s salvation.” (Isa 40:5) And that is what really literally happened when John the Baptist proclaimed in the desert of the Jordan that God’s salvation was going to be made manifest. For that is where God’s salvation appeared. Because Christ in his glory made himself known to everyone when he was baptized in the Jordan…

The prophet spoke that way because God had to reside in the desert - the desert that is inaccessible to the world. All the pagan nations were deserts as regards the knowledge of God, inaccessible to the righteous and to the prophets of God. That is why this voice gives the order to prepare the way for the Word of God, to unify the inaccessible and rough road so that our God, who is coming to dwell with us, might be able to walk on it…

“Go up onto a high mountain, Zion, herald of glad tidings; cry out at the top of your voice, Jerusalem, herald of good news!” (Isa 40:9) … Who is this Zion… whom the people of old called Jerusalem?… Is this not a way of calling the group of apostles who were chosen among the people of old? Is she not the one who received God’s salvation as an inheritance…, she who is placed on the heights, which is to say, founded on the Word, the only Son of God? It is to her that he gives the order … to announce the Good News of salvation to all people.