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The Mountain of the Lord
In days to come, the mountain of the Lord's house
shall be established as the highest of the mountains,
and shall be raised above the hills;
all the nations shall stream to it.
3 Jerusalem — built as a city that is bound firmly together
4 To it all the tribes go up, the tribes of the Lord,
as was decreed for Israel, to give thanks for the name of the Lord,
5 For there the thrones of judgement were set up,
the thrones of the house of David.
Mountains remind us sometimes of how small we are, as they rise magnificently to the heavens.
Israel's idea about god did include the mountain god, El. The Isaiah reading returns to the mountain as the seat of god. The psalmist returns to that idea, but the mountain has changed into the city. (still built on a hill though!)
We are increasingly separated from the mountains and hills. Urban life dominates for most of the human population of the world. As we begin this pilgrimage through Advent, may we lift our eyes to the hills, know our own human story and place it in the context of all the earth.
Caribbean poet and Nobel prizewinner Derek Wallcott says: "For every poet it is always morning in the world; history a forgotten, insomniac night. The fate of poetry is to fall in love with the world in spite of history."