Reflections: Saturday of the Fifth Week of Epiphany

February 10, 2024 

Today’s Reading: Introit Psalm 99:1–5; antiphon: v. 9

Daily Lectionary: Job 6:1-13; John 3:1-21

Introit for the Transfiguration

Exalt the Lord our God, and worship at his holy mountain;

 for the Lord our God is holy!

The Lord reigns; let the peoples tremble!

 He sits enthroned upon the cherubim; let the earth quake!

The Lord is great in Zion;

 he is exalted over all the peoples.

Let them praise your great and awesome name!

 Holy is he!

The King in his might loves justice.

 You have established equity; you have executed justice and righteousness in Jacob.

Exalt the Lord our God; worship at his footstool!

 Holy is he!

Glory be 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.

Exalt the Lord our God, and worship at his holy mountain;

 for the Lord our God is holy!

In the Name + of Jesus. Amen. “The Lord our God is holy! … Holy is he!” (Psalm 99) The Introit for our Lord’s Transfiguration is from Psalm 99. Did you notice how many times in this Introit God is named as holy?  Yet, our Lord has the words of this Psalm spoken in a world which is unholy, and to sinners—you and me—who are unholy. And that which is unholy cannot make itself holy!

This Psalm is a comfort for the Lord’s people Israel. As they live in an unholy world, and living as an unholy people, the Lord provides for them holiness. He sets a mountain to which He gathers His people, and at that mountain the Lord from Heaven has words spoken to make His people holy: “I, the LORD, who makes you holy, am holy” (Leviticus 21:8). The mountain to which the Lord is taking His people is, of course, Mount Zion, where the Lord is making His people holy, delivering to them the forgiveness of their unholiness through the blood of the sacrifice at the Temple. 

The Psalm prophecies Christ! On the Mount of Transfiguration, Peter, James, and John see the Holy One. He is on His way to the cross. At His Mount Zion, His holy mountain, that is, at Golgotha, the holy One, Jesus, bears all unholiness. On that mountain, on the cross He gives the sacrifice to make every sinner holy.  

This Psalm now belongs to you. To me, to every sinner Jesus gathers to His Name. In our unholy world, in our own unholy lives, Jesus brings holiness as a gift. You are now given to speak the words of this Psalm, and to pray for yourself, your family, and your neighbor, as one who has been made holy by Christ. In the Name + of Jesus. Amen.

Abide with us, O Lord, we pray;The gloom of darkness chase away;

Your work of healing, Lord, begin, And take away the stain of sin. Amen. (LSB 401)

-Pastor Warren Graff is retired from Grace Lutheran Church, Albuquerque.

Audio Reflections Speaker: Pastor Jonathan Lackey is the pastor at Grace Lutheran Church, Vine Grove, Ky.

The Lutheran Reader’s Bible helps you develop a habit of devotion and Bible reading so you can slowly but intentionally understand and grow in God’s Word. Through introductions to the sixty-six books of the Bible, guided reading plans, and more, this Bible builds your confidence to study Scripture on your own.