Today’s readings: 1 Samuel 3:1-21; Acts 2:37-47; Luke 21:5-19
In the natural and man-made disasters we suffer, many people today see signs of the end times. Christ’s disciples, however, did not have in mind the end of the world when they pointed to the beautiful and magnificent temple. Adorned with beautiful stones and gifts dedicated to God, the temple was a symbol of unity for Israel and the place where they hoped to make peace with God. Because of its significance and solid structure, the disciples saw in the temple an edifice that would last forever. Yet, history shows that not long after Christ’s resurrection, the temple was completely destroyed.
While the disciples’ attentions were focused on the temple’s beauty and splendor, Jesus broke the news of the ugliness that was to come: the temple would crumble, false messiahs arise, nations enter into war with other nations, and natural disasters strike. His followers would suffer persecution, lawsuits, and even death on account of his name.
Do these things sound familiar to us today? What do we do in the presence of such signs? The Lord says, “By your endurance you will gain your lives.”
Prayer: Father God, help me to remain focused on the salvation you have given me through your begotten Son, and by the power of the Holy Spirit, grant me to stand firm in my faith in Christ. Amen.
Today’s devotion was written by Stéphane Kalonji, Pastor of Reformation Lutheran Church in New Bern, NC.