Jacob, Esau, and Birthright

Jacob, Esau, and Birthright Jacob and Esau meet (Genesis 33:4) Certain people in the Old Testament who had deep reverence towards God experienced moments which gave them a foretaste of the grace, and truth, that would ensue in the fullness of time. The story of Esau and Jacob, twin sons of Isaac and Rebekah, is an example. Esau loved to hunt and became Isaac’s favourite. Jacob, who was quieter, was Rebekah’s favourite. One day, Esau returned home after working in the fields. He was famished and asked Jacob for bread and a bowl of stew. Jacob seized the [...]

By |2020-05-27T19:41:55+10:00May 27th, 2020|Comments Off on Jacob, Esau, and Birthright

The Book of Obadiah

The Book of Obadiah The book of Obadiah is one of the shortest in the Old Testament, comprising only one chapter. It is the prophet Obadiah’s retelling of the vision which he received from God, which had both a literal and a spiritual dimension. Obadiah of Shechem was born into the tribe of Ephraim and was, according to St Ephraim the Syrian, a contemporary of prophets Hosea, Joel, Amos and Isaiah. His vision was a prophecy against the Edomites, who had collaborated with the Babylonians against the Jews. This betrayal was made worse because the Edomites did this to their [...]

By |2019-12-16T12:29:23+11:00November 16th, 2019|Comments Off on The Book of Obadiah

The Ascension of the Prophet Elijah (2 Kings 2:11-14)

The Ascension of the Prophet Elijah (2 Kings 2:11-14) At the conclusion of his earthly ministry Prophet Elijah is accompanied by his disciple Elisha when he is suddenly taken up to heaven alive in a whirlwind by a chariot with horses of fire. On his way to Heaven, Elijah throws down his mantle to Elisha, who describes Elijah as “father.” We learn many things from this blessed event. St Irenaeus of Lyons states that this event is proof of the possibility of the Resurrection. It shows that nothing stands in the way of the assumption of the body into heaven [...]

By |2019-08-26T16:03:03+10:00August 26th, 2019|Comments Off on The Ascension of the Prophet Elijah (2 Kings 2:11-14)

Proverbs 1:7 – The Beginning of Wisdom is the Fear of God

Proverbs 1:7 - The Beginning of Wisdom is the Fear of God   This phrase from the Proverbs of King Solomon, written towards the end of his life, provides an insight into how the spiritual life is to be approached. What is wisdom? St Ambrose of Milan in commenting on this verse identifies wisdom as the path of virtue, as does St John Chrysostom. Following the path requires that we first cut off the passions that Chrysostom calls “a result of a lack of wisdom”. Essentially, it means looking towards the true source of joy and not to the pleasures [...]

By |2019-03-16T13:43:11+11:00March 16th, 2019|Comments Off on Proverbs 1:7 – The Beginning of Wisdom is the Fear of God

Vision of Isaiah

Vision of Isaiah   The 6th chapter of the Prophecy of Isaiah contains the remarkable account of the prophet’s vision of God’s throne and the heavenly court. While Isaiah was in the Temple, he saw the Lord in all His glory, “sitting upon a high and exalted throne,” surrounded by the six-winged seraphim who cried out “Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of Hosts; the whole earth is full of His glory” (Isaiah 6:3). Falling to the ground, Isaiah confessed his unworthiness, saying, “Woe is me…for being a man, and having unclean lips … I saw the King, the Lord [...]

By |2018-11-28T15:13:23+11:00November 28th, 2018|Comments Off on Vision of Isaiah