Wednesday 18 December

Reveal among us the light of your presence, that we may behold your power and glory.

O Adonai

O Adonai, and leader of the House of Israel,
who appeared to Moses in the fire of the burning bush
and gave him the law on Sinai:
Come and redeem us with an outstretched arm.
(cf Exodus 3.2, 24.12)


Jeremiah 23.5-8 | Psalm 72.15-21| Matthew 1.18-24 |

The Burning Bush
by Norman Nicholson.

When Moses, musing in the desert, found
The thorn bush spiking up from the hot ground,
And saw the branches on a sudden bear
The crackling yellow barberries of fire,

He searched his learning and imagination
For any logical, neat explanation,
And turned to go, but turned again and stayed
And faced the fire and knew it for his God.

I too have seen the briar alight like coal,
The love that burns, the flesh that’s ever whole,
And many times have turned and left it there,
Saying: "It’s prophecy—but metaphor."

But stinging tongues like John the Baptist shout:
"That this is metaphor is no way out.
It's dogma too, or you make God a liar;
The bush is still a bush, and fire is a fire."


Gracious Father, look kindly on Australia's burning bushland. Let it no more be burned. Let it not be consumed. For your mercy's sake. Amen.


Marc Chagall (1887–1985). "who appeared to Moses in the burning bush … ." Lithograph.

Roderick Williams (1965– ), O Adonai. The Sixteen, dir. Harry Christophers.

May the Lord, when he comes, find us watching and waiting. Amen.

St Philip's Anglican Church, corner Moorhouse and Macpherson Streets, O'Connor, ACT 2602