“Here is my servant whom I uphold, my chosen one with whom I am pleased. Upon him I have put my spirit; he shall bring forth justice to the nations.” (Isaiah 42:1)

In commenting on these verses from today’s First Reading, Eusebius of Caesarea writes:

“Although this very great person is not the one who was in the mind of those hearing the prophecy the first time, he is not here called “Jacob” or “Israel” or “the seed of Abraham,” so clearly the Christ of God is meant here, just as the Evangelist paid witness: “I have set my Spirit on him, and he will execute judgment on the nations.”1 And after many things have taken place in the nations, which were not made fit to be counted in the apostolic chorus, the nations will hope in him. But in Isaiah’s prophecy the names of Jacob and Israel are missing. Who else could this be, the one called servant of God and his chosen one? Therefore it continues, “My soul delights in him.” For only he is the chosen one of God, and the socalled soul of God was delighting in him. In a manner similar to referring to the feet, hands, fingers and eyes of God, Scriptures make use of the term “soul” in relation to God. He is “chosen, ”not in the same way as the apostles, since it is to him alone that it is said, “whom my soul esteems,” but also “the Spirit of God was dwelling in him alone.” “For in him the fullness of the deity dwelled bodily.” For the Spirit is given to the one coming forth “from the root of Jesse,” the unique Word of God, whom the apostle revealed saying, “The Lord is the Spirit.” For he alone, pouring out the Spirit of inheritance, worked all things outwardly concerning the worldwide judgment on the nations, so that all would be prepared for the coming of God’s verdict.” (Commentary on Isaiah, 2)

Grant, we pray, almighty God,
that, though in our weakness we fail,
we may be revived through the Passion
of your Only Begotten Son.
Who lives and reigns with You
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

Glory to the Father
and to the Son
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning,
is now, and will be forever. Amen