November 26, 2015
Today’s readings: Daniel 6:12-28; Luke 21:20-28
Jesus predicted the destruction of Jerusalem. “When you see Jerusalem surrounded by armies, know that its desolation is at hand.” (Lk 21:20). That actually happened in 70 A.D. Jesus also said, “Jerusalem will be trampled underfoot by the Gentiles until the times of the Gentiles are fulfilled.” (Lk 21:24b). The “times of the Gentiles” refer to a period of unknown length from the destruction of Jerusalem up to the cosmic signs at the end of time. Indeed, Jerusalem today is divided, troubled, at war. The temple remains unrestored, with a mosque where the temple used to be.
Jesus also spoke of the end times, when “a terrible calamity will come upon the earth and a wrathful judgment upon this people.” (Lk 21:23b). It will be much worse than the destruction of Jerusalem. What would happen at the end? What shape will destruction and desolation take? A devastating world war, where people “will fall by the edge of the sword” (Lk 21:24a)? A massive tsunami, where “on earth nations will be in dismay, perplexed by the roaring of the sea and the waves” (Lk 21:25b)? Huge meteorites hitting the earth or nations engaged in Star Wars-type of destruction, as “the powers of the heavens will be shaken” (Lk 21:26b)?
Today people are unmindful of the end, when “these days are the time of punishment when all the scriptures are fulfilled.” (Lk 21:22). If they only knew. “People will die of fright in anticipation of what is coming upon the world” (Lk 21:26a). For us, we must be awake and watchful. “There will be signs in the sun, the moon, and the stars” (Lk 21:25a). We must be prepared. And we must not be afraid, but rather hopeful and eager for the return of the Lord. “But when these signs begin to happen, stand erect and raise your heads because your redemption is at hand.” (Lk 21:28). The fullness of salvation will be at hand.
As we are in the end times, we must intensify our work of evangelization. We must share Christ so that “the God of Daniel is to be reverenced and feared” (Dn 6:27a). The world must meet Christ, to realize who he truly is, “the living God, enduring forever, whose kingdom shall not be destroyed, whose dominion shall be without end, a savior and deliverer, working signs and wonders in heaven and on earth” (Dn 6:27b-28a). Then as people live Christ, they will be prepared for his second coming. “And then they will see the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory.” (Lk 21:27).
Onward to the New Evangelization!
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God bless you all.
“For to me life is Christ, and death is gain.” (Phil 1:21)
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