Nov 17 (Lk 21:5-19)

“God himself cannot sink this ship!”

>> “The captain can, by simply moving an electric switch, instantly close all the doors, practically making the vessel unsinkable”

>> “We believe that the ship is unsinkable.”

These were some of the comments and claims that were made about Titanic – the largest ship in the first half of the 1900’s

But all these proud and arrogant assertions found a watery grave, with the sinking of the Titanic on the morning of 15th April, 1912 killing over one thousand five hundred people.

It was a massive tragedy of the loss of many lives.

>> But it was also a horrific lesson to humankind on the need to be aware of her limitations.

>> It was also a torrid warning to generations on the need to be on the guard, always.

“Being on the watch” is a necessity and a basic requirement in every sphere of human life!

The Gospel of the Day presents this message of being vigilant and alert in our lives.

Jesus is on the courtyard of the Jerusalem Temple and He hears “some people speaking about how the temple was adorned with costly stones and votive offerings” (Lk 21:5)

The Jerusalem Temple was a magnificent building and one of the wonders of those days.

The Temple had just been marvelously rebuilt by Herod the Great.

>> In all its beauty, the Jerusalem Temple was a vast glittering mass of white marble, touched here & there with gold & colour and precious stones.

“Whosoever had not gazed on it”, said the old rabbis, “had not seen the perfection of beauty.”

>> The historian Tacitus, called this spectacular edifice as “a temple of vast wealth”

Precious gifts such as crowns, shields, vessels of gold and silver were presented by princes and others who visited the holy house.

>> The Jerusalem Temple was indeed rich in these votive offerings.

With such a grand spectacle and gorgeous building in the background, Jesus makes a prophetic saying, ” All that you see here – the days will come when there will not be left a stone upon another stone that will not be thrown down” (Lk 21:6)

These words would have come as a big shocker and a tantalizing scandal to His listeners.

>> Who would have thought that the Titanic would ever sink?

>> Who would have thought that the great Twin Towers in America would be in rubble?

>> Who would have thought the British Empire where “the sun never sets” would wane down?

To think of the Jerusalem Temple being totally destroyed was a case next to impossible.

>> The Jerusalem Temple was the holiest shrine of the Jews.

>> The Jerusalem Temple was the pulse and the heartbeat of the Jewish Faith.

>> The Jerusalem Temple was the greatest source of joy and pride for the Jews.

Any attack or any destruction of this Great Edifice of Faith was unimaginable and intolerable.

>> Yet, Jesus makes this powerful and daring prophecy.

What is the structure and edifice of joy and pride in our lives?

> Is it a structure…

… of fat bank-balances and transient fame and popularity

… of remarkable public positions and offices of high ranking

… of enjoying life with temporary pleasures and passing addictions?

All too often we have heard people saying:

>> “I have enough money & I am happy with my life!

Just enjoy today to the max. Who knows what happens tomorrow?”

>> “The status that I am in today, is a result of my hard-work and labour.

Why should anyone interfere in my private life to prevent me from enjoying it in my own style?”

History teaches us that structures built without the power and grace of God is bound to fall.

The Tower of Babel is a classic example from the Bible. (Gen 11: 4-9)

>> Built on human pride and aspiration, it had a catastrophic collapse

The lives of many people are also a lesson for us?

>> Samson… King Saul… King Solomon… Judas.

They had their moments of great glory and splendour.

>> But when pride and self-interest crept into their lives, they lost the touch of God’s hand!

We may glory and shine in beauty for some time, by just banking on our capabilities.

>> But unless, we remain in firm obedience and faithful commitment to the Lord, we are bound to fail!

None of us are, and can be unsinkable!

>> An obstinate stand that I can manage my life by myself is hazardous.

>> A proud feeling that no power in the world can shake me is dangerous.

>> An arrogant outlook that I am the sole master of my future and destiny is perilous.

Yes, let God be God in our lives!

>> Let Him enthrone the highest place and the privileged position in our lives.

May Jesus, the King of kings and the Lord of lords adorn the Temple of our lives.

>> With Him we can shine forever.

>> With Him we can stand forever.

>> With Him we can glory forever.

God Bless! Live Jesus!

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Quotable-quote-a-day-with-St Francis de Sales (SFS) – “The King of Glory does not reward His servants according to the dignity of their office…

… but according to the humility and love with which they have exercised it!”

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