Daily Reflection – Nov 22, 2016
Tuesday 22 November 2016
First Reading: Apocalypse 14:14-19
The Lord comes to judge the earth
Gospel Reading: Luke 21:5-11
Today’s Saint: St Cecilia, Virgin and Martyr (Memorial)
While some people were speaking about
how the temple was adorned with costly stones and votive offerings,
Jesus said, “All that you see here–
the days will come when there will not be left
a stone upon another stone that will not be thrown down.”
Then they asked him,
“Teacher, when will this happen?
And what sign will there be when all these things are about to happen?”
“See that you not be deceived,
for many will come in my name, saying,
‘I am he,’ and ‘The time has come.’
Do not follow them!
When you hear of wars and insurrections,
do not be terrified; for such things must happen first,
but it will not immediately be the end.”
Then he said to them,
“Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom.
There will be powerful earthquakes, famines, and plagues
from place to place;
and awesome sights and mighty signs will come from the sky.”
In the Bible, harvesting and reaping are powerful symbols of the end-times, the completion of a process, or the ingathering of souls to God. We hear echoes of the gospels in that the harvest is ready. Revelation places Jesus in the role of the reaper, as he gathers both wheat and grapes. Again, this is not a cause for fear; it simply means that Jesus stands at the end of history and that all will be completed in him. We gather the fruits of our own lives as we grow older – wisdom, experiences, and spiritual growth. But the crop must be tended carefully along the way!
Jesus reflects on the destruction of the temple that took place in 70 AD. He warns people not to be led astray by many claiming to be Jesus. It will be a time of great upheaval, distress, and fear. Although it reflects the destruction of the Jewish War with Rome in 70 AD, we find echoes in the fear, violence, and insecurity of our own time.
It is a call to remain faithful, rooted in the Lord, and persistent in our prayers and good works. Above all, we should not give in to the fear all around us. Ultimately, God is in charge. Whatever else happens, God does not change and God is always for us.
“Lord, help me to be faithful.”