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The great tribulation

REFLECTIONS TODAY

Published

LUKE 21:20-28

reflectionstodayJesus said to his disciples: “When you see Jerusalem surrounded by armies, know that its desolation is at hand. Then those in Judea must flee to the mountains. Let those within the city escape from it, and let those in the countryside not enter the city, for these days are the time of punishment when all the Scriptures are fulfilled. Woe to pregnant women and nursing mothers in those days, for a terrible calamity will come upon the earth and a wrathful judgment upon this people. They will fall by the edge of the sword and be taken as captives to all the Gentiles; and Jerusalem will be trampled underfoot by the Gentiles until the times of the Gentiles are fulfilled.

“There will be signs in the sun, the moon, and the stars, and on earth nations will be in dismay, perplexed by the roaring of the sea and the waves. People will die of fright in anticipation of what is coming upon the world, for the powers of the heavens will be shaken. And then they will see the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. But when these signs begin to happen, stand erect and raise your heads because your redemption is at hand.”

REFLECTION

YOUR REDEMPTION IS AT HAND. Jesus finally answers the question what sign will indicate the end and when. He does not give a chronological hour, but the time when the Son of Man comes in a cloud with power and great glory, after all the cataclysms on earth and in the heavens.

Jesus brings us back to his main concern: our redemption. We prefer to know about the signs and the exact time so that we can prepare. But it seems no preparation will be enough. Everything will be wiped out, things and humans on earth and the heavenly bodies.

Jesus helps us how to conduct ourselves when all those fearful signs happen. We should stand erect and raise our heads. This we can do if we believe in the connection between the signs, the coming of Christ, and our redemption. These are all intertwined.

We must be reminded also of the meaning of redemption. It presupposes that we are under the influence of evil that is not yet totally defeated. We are not perfectly free from sin and death.

When the Son of Man comes to redeem us, he will snatch us away from the clout of the Evil One and sin. He has paid for us in advance through his passion and death. His resurrection assures us of complete victory.

SOURCE: “365 Days with the Lord 2018,” ST. PAULS Philippines, 7708 St. Paul Rd., SAV, Makati City (Phils.); Tel.: 895-9701; Fax 895-7328; E-mail: books@stpauls.ph; Website: http://www.stpauls.ph.

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