THE SERVANT GENERAL
THE WAY FORWARD IN CHRIST
THE END TIMES - 1
Today’s gospel: Luke 21:5-11
We are living in the end times. Jesus was asked about the
sign of the end. Jesus said, “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.”
(v.9). Wars have swept through the face of the earth through
the centuries, some world wars, some regional or local wars.
Insurrections, armed conflicts within a nation or territory,
have also been commonplace. Men have taken the lives of other
men, either foreigners or their own countrymen, in violation
of God’s command against killing.
will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom.”
(v. 10). Today we see such wars of nations against other nations,
and coalitions of nations against a particular nation. Today
there is great potential for greater wars due to turbulent
conflicts in the world, whether in Syria or in Iran or in
the many trouble spots in the world. There are great conflicts
within nations, people fighting with and killing their own
people, such as in Iraq, Nigeria, Democratic Republic of Congo.
Radical Islamists are killing Christians. Sunnis and Shiites
are killing each other. Minorities are rising up against national
governments. The threat of nuclear war hovers on the horizon.
will be powerful earthquakes, famines, and plagues from place
to place” (v.11a). More and more we are experiencing
natural calamities, whether bush fires that rage for days
in America or Australia, or a category-5 typhoon that lashed
the Philippines. Hunger is a constant threat to life, especially
in places like in parts of Africa. The threat of drug-resistant
plagues is constant. The plague of HIV/AIDS and STDs are already
upon the whole world.
whole world is in a mess, and it is man’s doing. God
created a beautiful and bountiful world that was to provide
richly for His creatures, reflecting paradise in which He
reigns. But we have turned the earth into hell, an experience
of the absence of God, living in darkness and sin, being in
conflict with brothers, violating nature, being in rebellion
Even for the Israelites, the chosen people of God, whom God
blessed tremendously, their worship was empty and hypocritical.
While “the temple was adorned with costly stones and
votive offerings” (v.5), supposed to reflect the glory
of God in their midst, they had made it a den of thieves.
As the dwelling place of God is not in wood or stone but in
the pure hearts of His people, Jesus prophesied, “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.” (v.6). Indeed Jerusalem and the temple were destroyed
by the Romans in 70 A.D. Today, earthquakes and powerful storms
destroy centuries-old churches, much to our dismay and sorrow.
But is not God speaking powerfully to us?
as God speaks to us, we must discern His authentic voice,
for there will be many false prophets, especially during the
end times. Jesus warns us, “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!”
(v.8). Indeed today there are many false prophets, harping
on the end times, who will not bring people back to God but
will bring them to their own human ministries, for their own
selfish and even diabolical purposes.
These are the end times, and we need to work harder in bringing
people back to God and back to the authentic Church that Jesus
founded. This is the work of the New Evangelization. As to
the end, we do not have to keep asking, “Teacher, when
will this happen? And what sign will there be when all these
things are about to happen?” (v.7). We do not have to
wait until the return of Jesus is imminent. We do our work
now, with great urgency. And if his return is delayed, then
all the more we have that additional time with which to do
will be that “awesome sights and mighty signs will come
from the sky.” (v.11b). The most awesome and mighty
will be Jesus coming in great glory. That is the time of our
greatest rejoicing. But that is also the time when our work
will be done, and there is nothing more we can do, except
to exult joyfully in the Lord. All those who are saved and
who will enter into eternal life will already have been determined
by that time.
now, still awaiting that glorious moment, we do our work.
Onward to the New Evangelization!
With the Lord a day is like a thousand years and a thousand
years like a day. Thus, while we are already living in the end
times, it does not mean Jesus will return any time soon. Perhaps
he will, perhaps not. Perhaps it might be another century or
even another millennium.