Matthew 24:36-44 The Day and Hour Unknown
36 “But about that day or hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son,[a] but only the Father. 37 As it was in the days of Noah, so it will be at the coming of the Son of Man. 38 For in the days before the flood, people were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, up to the day Noah entered the ark; 39 and they knew nothing about what would happen until the flood came and took them all away. That is how it will be at the coming of the Son of Man. 40 Two men will be in the field; one will be taken and the other left. 41 Two women will grind with a hand mill; one will be taken and the other left.
42 “Therefore keep watch, because you do not know what day your Lord will come. 43 But understand this: If the house owner had known the thief was coming at what time of night, he would have kept watch and not let his house be broken into. 44 So you also must be ready because the Son of Man will come at an hour when you do not expect him.
Isaiah 2:1-5. The Mountain of the Lord
2 This is what Isaiah, son of Amoz saw concerning Judah and Jerusalem:
2 In the last days
the mountain of the Lord’s temple will be established
as the highest of the mountains;
it will be exalted above the hills,
and all nations will stream to it.
3 Many peoples will come and say,
“Come, let us go up to the mountain of the Lord,
to the temple of the God of Jacob.
He will teach us his ways,
so that we may walk in his paths.”
The law will go out from Zion,
the word of the Lord from Jerusalem.
4 He will judge between the nations
and will settle disputes for many peoples.
They will beat their swords into ploughshares
and their spears into pruning hooks.
Nation will not take up sword against nation,
nor will they train for war anymore.
5 Come, descendants of Jacob,
let us walk in the light of the Lord.
Lent is when we can look soberly and reflect upon our walk with the Lord.
St Matthew issues warnings about the days of Noah. Noah’s story of the ark is a memorable one. Even those who are not believers know something about Noah’s ark story. For believers, it’s an important story, and the NT writer thought so as well, so they mention it by example to their hearers.
The point about Noah’s days is that they were ordinary days. People ate, drank, conducted business, married, and had families. They were engaged in ordinary activities, just getting on with life as we do today.
There was no sign that trouble was ahead or hint that their lives and everything they built was in jeopardy. But they did receive a warning from Noah that one day they would lose their lives if they did not heed God’s call to prepare themselves to get on the ark.
We know the story; they laughed at Noah’s predictions, called him a fool, and subsequently lost their lives. God’s warnings fell on deaf ears.
Noah’s story contrasts the previous verse in Matthew, where clear signs herald Jerusalem’s destruction. Some suggest this is a different ‘Day’ and ‘hour’.
The second coming might occur anytime, not necessarily after a generation.
Alternatively, these warnings can too be interpreted as relating to Jerusalem’s fall.
However, Christians have read this text from the early days referring to the end times. A future that will usher in the end of the world as we know it.
And the fall of Jerusalem in 70AD was just a foretaste, a rehearsal of what was to come, where some will be taken in judgment, and others left in mercy.
We must also balance the Matthew reading with our Romans reading, which wakes us up to the fact that we can not become complacent and lazy.
We must live as children of the day and not of the night. The night-time is for sleeping, and the day is for alertness to work. Therefore, God calls us to be alert and not to be found sleeping when that great day arrives.
And today we must not be found sleep, today is the day of salvation- we have today- that’s all we don’t have tomorrow yet, today is the only thing in our control, and God wants us to be alert, and whatever we do, we do with an eternal purpose.
The celebration of Holy Communion is designed to help us to remember. We remember the death of our Lord, and if we remember what Jesus said to his disciples while they were in the Garden of Gethsemane only a few hours before Jesus’ death-
Matthew 26:40-45 New Living Translation (NLT)
He asked Peter, “Couldn’t you watch with me for even one hour? Keep watch and pray so that you will not give in to temptation. For the spirit is willing, but the body is weak!”
Isaiah’s promises of universal peace must be taken to ourselves in the same way as the call to holiness as our agenda.
We must neither look helplessly at a dark and sleeping world nor think that we, as a church, are alright as we are.
We must wake people up to the fact that the sun is already shining and that the judge of the nations is at the door, longing to see his justice and peace enfold the world in a single embrace.
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Remember to live life on purpose, in Hope. Faith and Love
Paula Rose Parish💕
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