Monday of the First Week of Advent
Isaiah 2:1-5 + Psalm 122 + Matthew 8:5-11
December 3, 2012
“We will go up to the house of the Lord.” [Psalm 122:1]
Right out of the chute on this first weekday of Advent, the prophecy and Gospel of today’s Mass focus our attention on the “catholic” / “universal” nature of Advent. God wants you during Advent to prepare for Him to bring salvation to every land, people, and person of God’s green earth. In other words, God wants you to be as generous as He is.
Isaiah 2 and Psalm 122 both describe the image of “the house of the Lord”. In these Old Testament passages, “the house of the Lord” refers not to Heaven, but to the sacred, earthly city of Jerusalem. Both passages also mention that Jerusalem sits atop a mountain (not on the scale of the Rockies or Himalayas, but a mountain as considered by the ancient peoples of the Holy Land). That “the house of the Lord” sits atop a mountain implies an ascent, which in turn implies personal sacrifice. One must stretch and climb to reach His house. We can relate this ascent both to the long course of Old Testament salvation history, and/or to our own religious practices during the Season of Advent.