Come out from it [Babylonian exile] and be pure,
(Unlike the exodus from Egypt when Israel carried away the spoils of Egypt,
here the Lord warns His people to take nothing with them
from their Babylonian exile, that they are to leave,
but to leave pure and undefiled by taking nothing
of the associations of exile with them
since they will be carrying the very articles
of the Lord's house back to the Temple of the Lord.
The Lord is calling them to keep their hands clean and unsullied
with anything that might defile the purity of their worship.
We, too, are called today to be pure and holy, even as the Lord is holy,
as we come out of the places of bondage in our lives.)
you who carry the articles of the Lord‘s house.
(The Lord is telling His people to prepare
to depart from their Babylonian exile,
and the phrase He uses to refer to them
alludes to their function as priests and their call to worship.
The phrase can also be translated as armor bearers,
making a clear reference to their function as warriors and their call to battle.
In this multi-leveled phrase, the Lord is calling His people
to be both warrior and priest, connecting their warfare against the enemy
as part of their call to worship their God.
We, today, are also still called to engage in spiritual battle
with spiritual weapons of warfare against the forces of the world
that try to defeat us, that try to make us captives, that try to place us in exile.
We are also called to be priests unto the Lord,
to focus on Him, to fulfill our priestly call, to worship the Lord,
which, as it turns out, is the greatest weapon we have at our disposal.
Our priestly and warrior functions are intertwined
so that to fulfill one today we have to fulfill the other.)
May the Lord richly bless you this day!
In Christ's love,
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