In our Gospel today, Jesus is speaking of very real threats to his followers.
They are walking in the temple and admiring how beautiful it is, adorned with rich stones and ornamentations, and he has to bring them abruptly back to Earth with a wake-up call. While you are thinking about how beautiful these material things are, Jesus says, dangers are creeping up on you all around.
Jesus warns his followers of three types of danger.
The first is being led away by false teachers and false Messiahs.
The second is great external calamities like wars, earthquakes and famines.
And the third is losing faith because of betrayal by friends.
His original disciples were in danger of all these things happening to them literally.
How blessed we are that we as twenty-first century Americans are not in danger of famine or being put on trial and condemned to death for our faith.
Many of our brothers and sisters around the world are not so lucky. Continue reading