Today's reading from the Prophet Isaiah continues the theme of the judgment of Israel. Because of the sins of the people, God will humble Israel, and only the "bud of the Lord"—Christ—will shine in glory.
When Christ comes, Israel will be purified. Since Christ comes both at His Birth and at the Second Coming, and since the Old Testament Israel is a type of the New Testament Church, the prophecy of Isaiah applies to the Second Coming as well. During Advent, we not only prepare ourselves for Christ's Birth; we prepare our souls for the Final Judgment.
Isaiah 2:6-22; 4:2-6 (Douay-Rheims 1899 American Edition)
For thou hast cast off thy people, the house of Jacob: because they are filled as in times past, and have had soothsayers as the Philistines, and have adhered to strange children. Their land is filled with silver and gold: and there is no end of their treasures. And their land is filled with horses: and their chariots are innumerable. Their land also is full of idols: they have adored the work of their own hands, which their own fingers have made.
And man hath bowed himself down, and man hath been debased: therefore forgive them not. Enter thou into the rock, and hide thee in the pit from the face of the fear of the Lord, and from the glory of his majesty.
The lofty eyes of man are humbled, and the haughtiness of men shall be made to stoop: and the Lord alone shall be exalted in that day. Because the day of the Lord of hosts shall be upon every one that is proud and highminded, and upon every one that is arrogant, and he shall be humbled. And upon all the tall and lofty cedars of Libanus, and upon all the oaks of Basan. And upon all the high mountains, and upon all the elevated hills. And upon every high tower, and every fenced wall. And upon all the ships of Tharsis, and upon all that is fair to behold.
And the loftiness of men shall be bowed down, and the haughtiness of men shall be humbled, and the Lord alone shall be exalted in that day. And idols shall be utterly destroyed. And they shall go into the holes of rocks, and into the caves of the earth from the face of the fear of the Lord, and from the glory of his majesty, when he shall rise up to strike the earth. In that day a man shall cast away his idols of silver, and his idols of gold, which he had made for himself to adore, moles and bats.
And he shall go into the clefts of rocks, and into the holes of stones from the face of the fear of the Lord, and from the glory of his majesty, when he shall rise up to strike the earth.
Cease ye therefore from the man, whose breath is in his nostrils, for he is reputed high.
In that day the bud of the Lord shall be in magnificence and glory, and the fruit of the earth shall be high, and a great joy to them that shall have escaped of Israel. And it shall come to pass, that every one that shall be left in Sion, and that shall remain in Jerusalem, shall be called holy, every one that is written in life in Jerusalem.
If the Lord shall wash away the filth of the daughters of Sion, and shall wash away the blood of Jerusalem out of the midst thereof, by the spirit of judgment, and by the spirit of burning. And the Lord will create upon every place of mount Sion, and where he is called upon, a cloud by day, and a smoke and the brightness of a flaming fire in the night: for over all the glory shall be a protection. And there shall be a tabernacle for a shade in the daytime from the heat, and for a security and covert from the whirlwind, and from rain.
- Source: Douay-Rheims 1899 American Edition of the Bible (in the public domain)