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O Key of David: Dec. 20

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  • Br. Jerome Leo
    +PAX O Key of David and Scepter of the house of Israel: You open and none may close, You close and none may open. Come and deliver from the chains of prison
    Message 1 of 1 , Dec 19, 2007
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      "O Key of David and Scepter of the house of Israel: You open and none
      may close, You close and none may open. Come and deliver from the
      chains of prison those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of
      death."

      The Hebrew word for key means something that opens, while the Greek and Latin
      terms both refer to something which closes. Jesus is the Key and He
      can open us to infinite possibilities, just as He can also close us
      to shut us away from dangers. He can open our prisons and free us,
      but He can also lock the city gates for our safety. When He opens,
      none may close, when He closes, none may open: when Jesus makes an
      election or decision for us it is irrevocable.

      The key is a symbol of authority. Even today, in the blessing of an
      abbot or abbess, a very important symbolic act is the handing over of
      the keys to the abbey, clearly pointing to the authority enjoyed over
      it by the one newly blessed. Jesus speaks of the keys of the kingdom
      on heaven, and demonstrates that He Himself holds them by His ability
      to hand them over to His Church. Isaiah 22:22 repeats the antiphon
      almost word for word, but it is not necessarily a messianic passage.
      It refers to a civil ruler whom God supports. His key of the house of
      David underscores the approval God gives to all his acts. St. John
      applies this passage to Jesus, and the liturgy follows suit.

      Most appropriately, since today we praise the supreme divine
      authority of Jesus with the symbol of a key, we ask Him to open our
      prisons of darkness and unlock the chains of sin and death that bind
      us still. It might be useful to remember that, as He opens, none may
      close. Hence, if He frees us from sin and death, from the various
      prisons of darkness we languish in, none may send us back there, save
      ourselves alone.

      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
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