Luke 21: 5-19
Watch Out for Doomsday Deceivers
One day people were standing around talking about the Temple, remarking how beautiful it was, the splendour of its stonework and memorial gifts. Jesus said, “All this you’re admiring so much—the time is coming when every stone in that building will end up in a heap of rubble.”
They asked him, “Teacher, when is this going to happen? What clue will we get that it’s about to take place?”
He said, “Watch out for the doomsday deceivers. Many leaders are going to show up with forged identities claiming, ‘I’m the One,’ or, ‘The end is near.’ Don’t fall for any of that. When you hear of wars and uprisings, keep your head and don’t panic. This is routine history and no sign of the end.”
He went on, “Nation will fight nation and ruler fight ruler, over and over. Huge earthquakes will occur in various places. There will be famines. You’ll think at times that the very sky is falling.
“But before any of this happens, they’ll arrest you, hunt you down, and drag you to court and jail. It will go from bad to worse, dog-eat-dog, everyone at your throat because you carry my name. You’ll end up on the witness stand, called to testify. Make up your mind right now not to worry about it. I’ll give you the words and wisdom that will reduce all your accusers to stammers and stutters.
“You’ll even be turned in by parents, brothers, relatives, and friends. Some of you will be killed. There’s no telling who will hate you because of me. Even so, every detail of your body and soul—even the hairs of your head!—is in my care; nothing of you will be lost. Staying with it—that’s what is required. Stay with it to the end. You won’t be sorry; you’ll be saved.
War is always a great disaster. For those in active wars, it must feel that the world is coming down around them. In Syria, every day, civilians are under constant threat of attack and we see the destruction on the news of the towns and cities that these people live in. While we can go out for a walk and enjoy the sights and sounds around us, these people are watching everything around them turn into rubble.
A large number of people all around the world are being persecuted for their religion and for what they believe in. As Salesians, we are still awaiting official information about Fr Tom Uzhunnalil SDB, who was captured in Yemen in March.
Jesus said that “Nation will fight nation”, and this week, we remember the soldiers and all those that were affected and lost their lives in tragic battles. We can only pray for peace in a world that is at war with each other.
Peace is the gentle lapping of the waves on a sandy beach
Softly falling on a winters night.
The flight of a bird
The smile on a baby’s face
Reading quietly a favourite book
Every night when we settle down to sleep
Peace is a happy heart
When we are content
Lord, grant us peace.