The following reflection is courtesy of Don Schwager (c) 2014, whose website is located at DailyScripture.net
Do you believe that the world as we know it is going to end just as Jesus foretold? Jesus’ prophetic description of the destruction of the holy city Jerusalem, the destruction of the world, and the day of final judgment, was not new to the people of Israel. The prophets had foretold these events many centuries before. Behold the day of the Lord comes, cruel, with wrath and fierce anger to make the earth a desolation and to destroy its sinners from it (Isaiah 13:9-13; see also Joel 2:1-2; Amos 5:18-20; Zephaniah 1:14-18) .
Jesus warns of the imminent destruction of Jerusalem as a consequence of the rejection of the Gospel. According the historian Josephus, over a million inhabitants died when the Romans destroyed Jerusalem with its temple in 70 A.D. Jerusalem’s vengeance resulted from her indifference to the visitation of God in the person of the Lord Jesus Christ (Luke 19:44).
Jesus also speaks about the judgment at the end of the world. Only spiritual blindness can keep us from recognizing the obvious signs of approaching disaster which awaits the day of judgment for those who refuse to heed God’s word of grace and salvation. Jesus was completely honest. He told his disciples what it would cost to follow him. And he promised that he would never leave them alone, even in their time of tribulation. The saints and martyrs who underwent torment and death made their prisons a temple of praise and their scaffolds a throne to the glory of God. They knew the saving presence of Jesus Christ with them in all circumstances. Jesus offers us safety in the face of earth’s threats. Not a hair of your head will perish (Luke 21:18). The disciple who walks with Christ may lose their body but not their soul.
The greatest gift which no one can take from us and which we can be most thankful for is our redemption through the precious blood of Jesus, which was shed on the cross for our sins, and our adoption through Christ as children of God our heavenly Father. Jesus Christ has redeemed us from slavery to sin, from fear of death, and from final destruction. We can be eternally thankful because our hope is anchored in heaven and in the promise that Jesus will return to fully establish his reign of peace and righteousness.
Jesus speaks of his second coming as a known fact, a for certain event which we can confidently expect to take place in the Lord’s time of choosing. This coming will be marked by signs that all will recognize – signs which will strike terror and grief in those who are unprepared and wonder and joy in those who are ready to meet the Lord. When the Lord Jesus returns he will fully establish his kingdom of justice and righteousness and he will vindicate all who have been faithful to him. His judgment is a sign of hope for those who have placed their trust in him. Do you hope in God and in the promise of Christ to return again to establish his reign of righteousness and peace?
“Lord Jesus, fill me with gratitude for the gift of redemption and increase my hope and longing for your return again in glory. May that day bring joy to my heart rather than sorrow. Help me to serve you faithfully and to make the best use of my time now in the light of your coming again.”
The following reflection is courtesy of PresentationMinistries.com (c) 2014. Their website is located at PresentationMinistries.com
THE FEAST OF FEASTS
“The angel then said to me: ‘Write this down: Happy are they who have been invited to the wedding feast of the Lamb.’ ” Revelation 19:9 In the USA, today is Thanksgiving Day. Many of us will be enjoying the traditional Thanksgiving feast with our families. We hope that this feast will prefigure the ultimate feast, “the wedding feast of the Lamb” in heaven.
To accept the Lord’s invitation to His wedding feast, we must make a covenant of love with Him, completely give our lives to the Lord, and have a relationship with Him which transcends marriage. This wedding feast is the feast of Jesus, called the Lamb. To come to the wedding feast, we need the weakness of the slain Lamb of God. We must have the weakness of the cross (see 2 Cor 13:4) by which God’s power is brought to perfection (2 Cor 12:9). Furthermore, all those at the heavenly wedding feast “have survived the great period of trial; they have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb” (Rv 7:14). At the everlasting, ultimate wedding feast, all present have a purified, crucified, covenant-love for the Lamb of God. At Holy Communion, the priest proclaims: “Behold the Lamb of God, behold Him Who takes away the sins of the world. Blessed are those called to the supper of the Lamb.” Live a life of love and daily Communion. Accept the invitation to the heavenly wedding feast of the Lamb.
Prayer: Father, thank You for inviting me to celebrate with You forever in heaven. I accept Your invitation. Promise: “When these things begin to happen, stand erect and hold your heads high, for your deliverance is near at hand.” Lk 21:28 Praise: Clara’s home-based community gets together several times monthly for fellowship, thanksgiving, and faith-building.
Rescript: In accord with the Code of Canon Law, I hereby grant my permission to publish One Bread, One Body covering the period from October 1, 2014 through November 30, 2014.Most Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Auxiliary Bishop, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, April 24, 2014. The rescript is a declaration that a book or pamphlet is considered to be free of doctrinal or moral error. It is not implied that those who have granted ecclesial permission agree with the contents, opinions, or statements