God, Restore Us!

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First Sunday of Advent

Isaiah 64:1-9
Psalm 80:1-7, 16-18
1 Corinthians 1:3-9
Mark 13:24-37

 

We must not inordinately fix upon the chronology of what is said in Scripture, because frequently the Holy Spirit, having spoken of the end of the last times, then returns again to address a previous time, and fills up what had before been left unsaid.  Nor must we look for a specific chronology in apocalyptic visions, but rather follow the meaning of those things which are prophesied.   Victorinus of Petrovium 280 AD

Chapter 13 of Mark is a difficult chapter, not just because it deals with the end of times.  It is filled with images such as those found in Isaiah and the other prophets, images which paint a dark and disturbing picture.

Once we realize that Jesus is freely quoting the prophets and using them to point to himself, the difficulties with this chapter are reduced to manageable proportions.  As always, Jesus says not even he knows when the end of days will come.

The difficulty is the statement, I tell you that this generation will not have passed until all these things have come truePhillips  The phrase, this generation, always means the people living at that time in the Bible.  It is a common phrase used by prophets down through the ages.  But we cannot forget that prophets speak to the current and to distant times simultaneously.

As Jesus spoke, he knew that thousands of the people around him would experience apocalyptic death and destruction.  He may not have known the exact year, but he knew Rome would destroy Jerusalem and the Judgment of God would be visited on this generation.

At the same time, in true prophetic style, Jesus spoke of what we now call the end times, the final apocalypse.  When you see the buds form on the fig tree, the end is near.  Even the most faithful believers have to agree that Jesus did not give us much of a clue.  Fig trees bud every year.

And since you don’t know when that time will come, be on guard! Stay alert. NLT

Paul, once again, helps with you are not lacking any spiritual gift and are eagerly awaiting the revealing of our Lord Yeshua the Messiah.  He will enable you to hold out until the end and thus be blameless on the Day of our Lord Yeshua the Messiah. CJB

 

Be righteous and do good.

Mike Lawrence

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