It is important to note the “mission” character of this text. Indeed, these would have been strange words for Isaiah’s audience. The Israelites had taken the covenantal promise and the language of separation and chosen to mean that the message of salvation and restoration was meant for no one but them.
It is somewhat rare that preachers get a blessing as a sermon text, but that is what Jude gives us. The genre is entirely fitting for the Last Sunday of the Church Year, especially if your congregation has had a tough year (you know what I mean).
The Old Testament text for this Sunday is from the Book of the Prophet Daniel. The text is Daniel 12:1-3 and arguably contains the clearest teaching concerning the bodily resurrection from the dead in the Old Testament. Explicit texts on the resurrection, especially bodily resurrection, are not that common in the Old Testament.
Christian preaching always has an eschatological ring to it. It takes place during the “in-between” times—the days between Jesus’ first and second comings. But this eschatological perspective tends to fade into the background as Christians (and preachers) go about their business week-in and week-out. The end of the church year provides an opportunity to reorient the Christian life around Jesus’…