"Psalm 23," John August Swanson. Used by permission from the artist.
Image © by John August Swanson. Artwork held in the Luther Seminary Fine Arts Collection, St. Paul, Minn.
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Isaiah's Vineyard Song
Isaiah 5:1-7; 11:1-5 Commentary
by Margaret Odell
This lectionary reading combines two familiar texts.
The Vineyard Song of Isaiah 5:1-7 lures the audience into bringing judgment on itself for its failure to produce justice and righteousness, while the messianic hymn of Isaiah 11:1-5 envisions a new David establishing justice because he has been endowed with the divine spirit of wisdom and discernment. Both texts employ metaphors drawn from the plant world, and although the metaphor switches from the care of a vineyard in chapter 5 to the regeneration of a tree in chapter 11, both texts are rooted, so to speak, in agrarian wisdom: Even plants and trees that are brutally cut down can grow again. They also raise the question of whether and how it is possible for human communities to fulfill God’s expectation of justice and righteousness.
The Song of the Vineyard in Isaiah 5:1-7 revolves around an elaborately developed metaphor of a love song about a vineyard. We first hear of the vintner’s expectations from the prophet-singer, who claims that this is his love song about his beloved. ...
| Bible Text
Summer 2020 Readings
2020-21 Readings (Year 3)
The narrative lectionary is a four-year cycle of readings. Read more.
NL Podcast 381: Isaiah's Vineyard Song
November 17, 2019
Podcast on the Narrative Lectionary readings for Nov. 17, 2019, (Isaiah's Vineyard Song) featuring Profs. Rolf Jacobson, Craig Koester, and Kathryn Schifferdecker. Recorded at Luther Seminary, Saint Paul, Minn., for Working Preacher.