Epiphany January 5, 2020

Epiphany - Year A

Isaiah 60:1-9

Arise, shine, for your light has come, and the glory of the LORD has risen upon you. For behold, darkness shall cover the earth, and thick darkness the peoples; but the LORD will arise upon you, and his glory will be seen upon you. And nations shall come to your light, and kings to the brightness of your rising.  Lift up your eyes all around, and see; they all gather together, they come to you; your sons shall come from afar, and your daughters shall be carried on the hip.  Then you shall see and be radiant; your heart shall thrill and exult, because the abundance of the sea shall be turned to you, the wealth of the nations shall come to you.  A multitude of camels shall cover you, the young camels of Midian and Ephah; all those from Sheba shall come. They shall bring gold and frankincense, and shall bring good news, the praises of the LORD.  All the flocks of Kedar shall be gathered to you; the rams of Nebaioth shall minister to you; they shall come up with acceptance on my altar, and I will beautify my beautiful house.  Who are these that fly like a cloud, and like doves to their windows?  For the coastlands shall hope for me, the ships of Tarshish first, to bring your children from afar, their silver and gold with them, for the name of the LORD your God, and for the Holy One of Israel, because he has made you beautiful.


1.      What is it that brings the nations to God?

Psalm 72:1-11

1   Give the King your judgments, O / God, *

         and your righteousness to the King’s / son.


2  Then shall he judge your people with / righteousness *

         and defend the poor with / justice.

3   The mountains also shall bring / peace, *

         and the little hills righteousness to the / people.

4   He shall vindicate the poor among the / people, *


         defend the children of the poor, and punish the / wrongdoer.

5   They shall fear you as long as the sun and moon en/dure, *

         from one generation to an/other.


6  He shall come down like the rain upon the mown / grass, *

         even as showers that water the / earth.

7   In his time shall the righteous / flourish, *


         even an abundance of peace, so long as the moon en/dures.

8   His dominion shall be also from one sea to the / other, *

         and from the river unto the world’s / end.

9   Those who dwell in the wilderness shall kneel be/fore him; *

         his enemies shall lick the / dust.

10 The kings of Tarshish and of the isles shall give / presents; *

         the kings of Arabia and Seba shall bring / gifts.


11 All kings shall fall down be/fore him; *

         all nations shall do him / service.


1.Why would God have such concern for the poor, and how can we share in that concern?


Ephesians 3:1-13

1 For this reason I, Paul, a prisoner of Christ Jesus on behalf of you Gentiles— assuming that you have heard of the stewardship of God's grace that was given to me for you, how the mystery was made known to me by revelation, as I have written briefly. When you read this, you can perceive my insight into the mystery of Christ, which was not made known to the sons of men in other generations as it has now been revealed to his holy apostles and prophets by the Spirit. This mystery isthat the Gentiles are fellow heirs, members of the same body, and partakers of the promise in Christ Jesus through the gospel.

Of this gospel I was made a minister according to the gift of God's grace, which was given me by the working of his power. To me, though I am the very least of all the saints, this grace was given, to preach to the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ, and to bring to light for everyone what is the plan of the mystery hidden for ages inGod, who created all things, 10 so that through the church the manifold wisdom of God might now be made known to the rulers and authorities in the heavenly places. 11 This was according to the eternal purpose that he has realized in Christ Jesus our Lord, 12 in whom we have boldness and access with confidence through our faith in him. 13 So I ask you not to lose heart over what I am suffering for you, which is your glory.

1.      Why would God choose to leave the fullness of his plan of salvation a mystery for so long?

Matthew 2:1-12

1 Now after Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea in the days of Herod the king, behold, wise menfrom the east came to Jerusalem, saying, “Where is he who has been born king of the Jews? For we saw his star when it roseand have come to worship him.” When Herod the king heard this, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him; and assembling all the chief priests and scribes of the people, he inquired of them where the Christ was to be born. They told him, “In Bethlehem of Judea, for so it is written by the prophet: “‘And you, O Bethlehem, in the land of Judah,    are by no means least among the rulers of Judah; for from you shall come a ruler who will shepherd my people Israel.’”  Then Herod summoned the wise men secretly and ascertained from them what time the star had appeared. And he sent them to Bethlehem, saying, “Go and search diligently for the child, and when you have found him, bring me word, that I too may come and worship him.” After listening to the king, they went on their way. And behold, the star that they had seen when it rose went before them until it came to rest over the place where the child was. 10 When they saw the star, they rejoiced exceedingly with great joy. 11 And going into the house, they saw the child with Mary his mother, and they fell down and worshiped him. Then, opening their treasures, they offered him gifts, gold and frankincense and myrrh. 12 And being warned in a dream not to return to Herod, they departed to their own country by another way.

1.      What are the traditional meanings of the three gifts?


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