Leviticus 1-3; Matthew 24

Matthew 24 is also known as Jesus’ “eschatological discourse”.  There is a lot to unpack here, and careful reading and reflection is called for.  Verses 7-13 sounds eerily like our present day:

“Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom; there will be famines and earthquakes from place to place.  All these are the beginning of the labor pains.  Then they will hand you over to persecution, and they will kill you.  You will be hated by all nations because of my name.  And many will be led into sin; they will betray and hate one another.  Many false prophets will arise and deceive many, and because of the increase of evildoing, the love of many will grow cold.  But the one who perseveres to the end will be saved.  And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached throughout the world as a witness to all nations, and then the end will come.”

I have to admit my love is continuously tempted to grow cold.  The murder of the four Sisters of Charity and other staff at a nursing home by ISIS broke my heart, especially after reading the surviving nun’s account (WARNING: graphic and disturbing violence):

http://www.ncregister.com/daily-news/eyewitness-account-of-isis-attack-on-mother-teresas-sisters-in-yemen/

These are the sweetest, gentlest ladies on the planet.  It’s not like they were knocking on Muslim doors proselytizing like Jehovah’s Witnesses; they were caring for the elderly and the infirm out of total charity.  How do men become such devils?  There’s a temptation to pray for them, to pray that Chuck Norris shows up while they are sleeping and blows off assorted body parts with high-caliber bullets while they squeal in fear in Arabic or Farsi like the pigs hitting a vat of boiling water.  But I instead pray that they have conversion of heart and repent, before dying and facing God’s justice.  A bit of a cathartic digression there; thanks for listening.

To me the most important verse is 36:

“But of that day and hour no own knows, neither the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but the Father alone.”

So anyone saying that now is the end time – the “end time” meaning Armageddon is imminent – should not be given credibility.  Jesus is straightforward: they don’t know.  I do know my own personal “end time” is nigh, that if I live my life with this in mind, I’m not only prepared for the end of my end time on earth, but Jesus’ return if this is indeed that end time.  We need to lead our lives like the wise virgins, not sure exactly when the bridegroom is coming, but vigilant and prepared for when he does come.

GOD’S ANSWER: Yes, the Bridegroom is coming.  Keep your lamp filled.

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2 Comments on “Leviticus 1-3; Matthew 24”

  1. Stan Sikorski Says:

    Tom;

    We (Karen and I) thank God each day that we were born where we were born. We are so lucky, Americans. We NEED to remember that every minute of our lives and, whether we proclaim Christian virtues or humanitarian ones, take care of the “lambs” who are hurting. God will take care of sorting us out.

    S


  2. In some respects we are unlucky: we have too much stuff, too much to become attached to. But you are right, we aren’t being killed because of our religion thankfully. As far as “God sorting it out”, – and I don’t believe this is what you are advocating – I believe we are not supposed to sit idly by and let injustice have its way.


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