(on Isaiah 42:1-4)

The Word of God, born of the Virgin, was and is eternally King and Lord of all, but when he became man he made the limitations of humanity his own.

[…] I will help him, God says, and calls him his chosen one.

For the Father cooperated with the Son, performing the mighty works he did as works of his own power; and Christ is in truth the chosen one, since he is the fairest of the sons of men and accepted as God’s beloved.

The Father rejoiced in him and declared: This is my beloved Son in whom I am well pleased.

In his human nature Christ was anointed and can be said to share in the Holy Spirit, even though he is the giver of the Spirit and the sanctifier of all creation.

This is shown clearly by the words, I have put my Spirit upon him.

The Gospel says that when Jesus was baptized the Spirit, in the form of a dove, came to him from heaven and remained on him.

This anointing was to enable him to bring justice to the nations, which he did by condemning Satan, their tyrant.

Christ taught us this himself when he said: Now is the time for this world to be judged, now shall the ruler of this world be cast out.

And I, when I am lifted up form the earth, will draw all things to myself.

He passed sentence of destruction on Satan who had held this world in thraldom, and by that righteous sentence saved those who had been deceived.

But he will not shout, says Scripture, or raise his voice, or let it be heard in the street.

The Saviour and Lord of all came to dwell among us in profound lowliness and humility, one might say without making a sound, and he did no harm to anyone.

He came in silence and peace, so as not to crush the bruised reed or extinguish the smouldering wick.

What will his work be, what will he do for the nations? He will bring judgement to the truth.

By judgement the prophet seems to mean the law, for it is written about Israel and about God, the ruler of all: You have established judgment and justice in Jacob.

So now he will bring judgement, or the law which was concerned with shadows and types, to the truth of the Gospel.

Through the Gospel he has shown the way of life that is pleasing to him and has changed worship according to the letter of the law into worship in truth.

Cyril of Alexandria (c. 376-444): Commentary on Isaiah Lib. 3, t. 5 4 (PG 70, 850-851), from the Monastic Office of Vigils, January 6th (before Epiphany), Year 1.

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