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Shalom Comes to Town
Theme of the Week: Christmas: When Justice Came to Earth
Monday, December 23, 2013

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Key Bible Verse: "The Spirit of the LORD is upon me, for he has anointed me to bring Good News to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim that captives will be released, that the blind will see, that the oppressed will be set free." (Luke 4:18)

Dig Deeper: Luke 4:16-21

When the angels announced the coming of the Messiah, they proclaimed good news of shalom: peace on earth. Because this baby had been born, there would be peace on earth and goodwill toward people.

Later, as recounted in [today's Dig Deeper], Jesus began his public ministry by unrolling the scroll of Isaiah and choosing to read prophecies connecting the Messiah with justice. He then stopped reading, rolled up the scroll, and sat down. With the eyes of everyone focused on him, Jesus said, "Today this Scripture is fulfilled in your hearing" (NIV).

Later, John the Baptist developed doubts about Jesus and essentially asked, "Are you really the Messiah, or did I get this wrong?" Jesus [let John know] that the blind were receiving sight and that people were being healed. He declared his works of justice in fulfillment of the prophecies in Isaiah as evidence that he was the Messiah.

Jesus came with the good news that he was going to accomplish spiritual redemption, which has everything to do with justice. He also saw this redemption extending into the material world and being represented by a kingdom community in which justice would flourish and the marginalized would be welcomed.

—Ken Wytsma in Pursuing Justice

My Response: What does the passage Jesus quoted from (Isa. 61) reveal about his mission?

Adapted from Pursuing Justice by Ken Wytsma (Thomas Nelson, 2013) by permission. All rights reserved by the copyright holder and/or the publisher. May not be reproduced.

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Prayer for the Week
Sovereign Lord, please use these readings to give me a new vision of how your love and justice meet in the manger of the incarnate Savior.

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