20 December 2006

O Clavis David!

Today's O Antiphon uses a title that is "new" inasmuch as it is used for the first time, as a title, in this antiphon. The "key of David," the six-pointed star, is born and illumines the darkness, just as it once lit the night sky over that humble manger in Bethlehem.
O Clavis David, et sceptrum domus Israel: qui aperis et nemo claudit; claudis et nemo aperit: Veni et educ vinctum de domo carceris sedentem in tenebris et umbra mortis.
O Key of David, and scepter of the house of Israel: who opens and none shall close, closes and none shall open: Come and lead out from the prison house the one in chains who sits in darkness and the shadow of death.
Jesus is the key that unlocks the gate of heaven. Man is held captive, chained by sin and temptation, walking a road that leads only to despair and death. The law, the old covenant, did not lead men to freedom -- it was yet another fetter waiting to be unlocked. Jesus is the long-awaited messiah. And by his coming among us as man, Jesus ended the reign of sin and death.
As we prepare for Jesus' coming, let us examine our hearts for those little trappings that hold us bound. Sometimes we find it difficult to forgive someone and we are held captive by a feeling of guilt or sorrow. Perhaps we struggle with an addiction that makes it difficult for us to carry out our daily responsibilities and we are held captive by a feeling of helplessness. Whatever it is that restrains our heart can be loosed by the power of the mighty Key of David -- and the wise still seek that six-pointed star in the dark sky that veils the dawn of his coming.

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