MARCH 22, 2020
The world will end, and what we now know will cease to exist. Jesus told us this when he said, “heaven and earth will pass away”. Jesus continued this thought by promising at least one thing that would not fade, “my words will not pass away.” Jesus taught us that his words and promises are everlasting and trustworthy even when everything else fails.
Please read Luke 21:25-28. This passage is part of a handful of teachings Jesus gives to end his public ministry. He teaches that the end of times will be marked by the Jewish temple being decimated, Jerusalem being destroyed, along with wars, famines, and diseases. Then he tells us something very important; when these things happen, we should look up (not down). This is a striking direction. Jesus describes many signs of the end of times, and he says these things will cause “fear and foreboding” because of what is happening on the earth. It would be natural for people to focus on these fearful signs! But, in the midst of confusion, chaos, and fear, Jesus calls us to raise our heads to look at him, our redemption.
This is instructing for our current moment. Many people are afraid. Many people do not know what will happen to their families, their country, or their bank account. Many people are flustered because we do not know how the next few months will progress. What does Jesus tell us to do when we are scared of what might happen to us? He tells us to be alert and be prepared for his returning to earth in power and glory. If we are prepared for that final day, ready to look at him and rejoice that our redemption has come, we will be prepared to rejoice even now in the truth that Jesus’s words will not pass away. He will come back. He will redeem all who trust in him. He will establish a new heaven and new earth. He will bring us into perfect peace forever. These are the promises, the words of Jesus, to which we cling!
Discussion: What about this world causes “fear and foreboding” for you? What about this present life causes you to faint, worry, be anxious?
Discussion: How can you lift your eyes off of that circumstance or problem and place your eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of your faith? What does Jesus promise or exemplify that eases your concerns?
Challenge: This week, when you catch yourself spending more time focusing on news headlines than on Jesus, practice lifting your head to look at Jesus instead of the circumstances surrounding all of us. Spend time in prayer this week looking up to Jesus as your redeemer. Think about him coming back to earth to restore all things and establish his everlasting dominion. (Daniel 7:13-14) Rejoice in Jesus's promise that his words will not pass away even when it feels like the ground beneath your feet is giving way! Let Jesus be the sight which grounds your confidence, especially in uncertain, scary times like these.