The encyclical letter Laudato Si is available here on the Vatican website. We’ve been looking at the Old Testament the past few days, and today we turn our attention with Pope Francis to the prophets.
73. The writings of the prophets invite us to find renewed strength in times of trial by contemplating the all-powerful God who created the universe. Yet God’s infinite power does not lead us to flee his fatherly tenderness, because in him affection and strength are joined. Indeed, all sound spirituality entails both welcoming divine love and adoration, confident in the Lord because of his infinite power.
The prophets of Israel and Judah are regarded as scary figures pronouncing scary consequences for moral misdeeds of the nation. Many of them also offered poetic passages of great tenderness and compassion. These two from Jeremiah and Isaiah are representative of a larger body of work:
In the Bible, the God who liberates and saves is the same God who created the universe, and these two divine ways of acting are intimately and inseparably connected: “Ah Lord God! It is you who made the heavens and the earth by your great power and by your outstretched arm! Nothing is too hard for you… You brought your people Israel out of the land of Egypt with signs and wonders” (Jer 32:17, 21). “The Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He does not faint or grow weary; his understanding is unsearchable. He gives power to the faint, and strengthens the powerless” (Is 40:28b-29).