Tuesday of Pentecost 10 – Isaiah 55:1-5 

“Come, everyone who thirsts,
    come to the waters;
and he who has no money,
    come, buy and eat!
Come, buy wine and milk
    without money and without price.
Why do you spend your money for that which is not bread,
    and your labor for that which does not satisfy?
Listen diligently to me, and eat what is good,
    and delight yourselves in rich food.
Incline your ear, and come to me;
    hear, that your soul may live;
and I will make with you an everlasting covenant,
    my steadfast, sure love for David.
Behold, I made him a witness to the peoples,
    a leader and commander for the peoples.
Behold, you shall call a nation that you do not know,
    and a nation that did not know you shall run to you,
because of the Lord your God, and of the Holy One of Israel,
    for he has glorified you.

My 9th grade English teacher would have had a problem with Isaiah. He is mixing his metaphors; eating and listening are not the same thing. And what would have my economics teacher said? Buy commodities with out money and without price? What sort of an economy is this? My physician would probably not be terribly keen on the exhortation to delight myself in rich food. More vegetables, less of the dessert, and keep it to one glass of red wine.

I am so glad God does not listen to these people!

If he did, he would not have made that everlasting covenant with us that David enjoyed, the steadfast, sure love which saw David through the dark days of his flight from Saul and his sojourn through the despair of adultery, murder, and the death of his son. Isaiah tells us to read those David stories as our own now. You can find them in I and II Samuel and I Chronicles. The love God had for David he has expanded to include all. This love of God makes no sense. It defies all the rules of economics and forces us to mix our metaphors to describe it. It is a feast which knows no boundaries or limits.

Of late the streets in some cities have resounded with demands for food without price and justice for the oppressed. There is much which concerns me about what I hear and see, but I also hear a deep spiritual longing for exactly what Isaiah speaks about in these words. God hears that longing as well and that is why he has established his church and called you and me through baptism into Christian lives of loving service and witness. He promises us that a nation we do not know shall run to us, because the Lord has glorified us. What do you think that will look like? What will that mean?

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