As we reflect during this Holy Season of Advent on the importance for us of the Incarnation, today’s first reading from the prophet Isaiah is a good example of a Christian reading of the Old Testament. The prophecy obviously is describing traits of the longed for Messiah, the Anointed One, the Christ. The historical Jesus not only demonstrated these traits, but as well does the glorious Christ and His mystical body continue to do so.
Anyone familiar with the catechism will immediately recognize wisdom, understanding, strength, knowledge, fear of the Lord, etc. as gifts of the Holy Spirit bestowed upon us initially at Baptism and increased – if we let them – throughout life through prayer and the Sacraments. It is unfortunate that the translation of the final sentence in today’s prophecy doesn’t make clearer that all nations (humans) have His dwelling within us as their heritage and vocation.
This insight is why we Christians will forever remain a missionary people.