Today’s reading: Mk 13:14-37
Today we read more of Jesus’ prophecy of the end of the Temple and the destruction of Jerusalem. One interesting fact is that Jesus told his followers that when they see these things happening they should flee the city. This played out in history exactly as Jesus had predicted. As the Roman invasion of Israel was underway, political infighting reached a high point in Rome. Vespasian, who was the general in charge of the campaign, had to return to Rome. The faithful used the lull in the fighting to escape the city. Vespasian quickly quelled the political maneuvering in Rome, was crowned emperor and sent his son, Titus, back to Israel to continue the campaign. Titus quickly breaches the walls of Jerusalem and despite fierce resistance took the city.
Jesus ends his teaching on these end times predictions by admonishing us to be watchful. This is clearly the part that applies most directly to us. Jesus again emphasizes that no one knows the day or the hour, not even the angels or the Son of Man, himself. Throughout this discourse, Jesus warned of false messiahs and false prophets. Our first indication to turn and run is when anyone claims to know that the day and hour is presently upon us. A true pastor will always counsel us to be prepared for our last day, but never claim to know the day or the hour. Be watchful!
Tomorrow: Mk 14:1-21