2nd Sunday of Advent, Year B: 1st Reading

Isaiah 40:1-5, 9-11

Comfort, give comfort to my people,
      says your God.
   Speak tenderly to Jerusalem, and proclaim to her
      that her service is at an end,
      her guilt is expiated;
   indeed, she has received from the hand of the LORD
      double for all her sins.

         A voice cries out:
   In the desert prepare the way of the LORD!
      Make straight in the wasteland a highway for our God!
   Every valley shall be filled in,
      every mountain and hill shall be made low;
   the rugged land shall be made a plain,
      the rough country, a broad valley.
   Then the glory of the LORD shall be revealed,
      and all people shall see it together;
      for the mouth of the LORD has spoken.

   Go up on to a high mountain,
      Zion, herald of glad tidings;
   cry out at the top of your voice,
      Jerusalem, herald of good news!
   Fear not to cry out
      and say to the cities of Judah:
      Here is your God!
   Here comes with power
      the Lord GOD,
      who rules by his strong arm;
   here is his reward with him,
      his recompense before him.
   Like a shepherd he feeds his flock;
      in his arms he gathers the lambs,
   carrying them in his bosom,
      and leading the ewes with care.