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Luke 21:25-36, Jesus' Promise

Key Verse

Then [Jesus] told them a parable: ‘Look at the fig tree and all the trees; as soon as they sprout leaves you can see for yourselves and know that summer is already near.’
— Luke 21:29-30

RCL Daily Devotion for Sunday, December 2, 2018

RCL Daily Devotions written by Dr. Kimberly Leetch from RCL Worship Resources (see more).

Two hands shaking.

Main Idea: Jesus says we can see evidence of his coming all around us.

Jesus is on his way to the cross. As his earthly ministry draws near its end, his words become sharper and more urgent. The Son of Man is coming in a cloud, and the things of this world will pass away. How does he know? In the same way we can see the coming of spring when we witness sprouts on the leaves of the fig tree, so too, we can see the coming of the Son of Man when we witness “signs in the sun, the moon, and the stars, and on the earth.”

This is not to say that every hurricane, tsunami, and earthquake should frighten us into believing the end of days is upon us. No, this is to say that every flood, fire, and meteor shower is a sign that the kingdom of God is near. God’s kingdom – this earth – is now and not yet. This planet is God’s kingdom already, but it has not yet sprouted into the perfect world (devoid of sin and death) that God intends.

The disasters and sufferings are evidence that we are still living in a world that has not been completed in perfection. But the miracles are evidence that we are living in a world that has been touched by the hand of God. Evidence of God’s touch is everywhere – in the regrowth that a forest fire necessarily produces, in the miracle of a new baby that the pains of labor produce, in the compassion we cultivate when we experience a loss.

In this time of Advent, as the world grows darker and we fall into the trap of consumerism, we can take time to reflect on the evidence all around us that this is God’s world, and that God’s fingerprints are all over it. Christ is indeed coming, for us in the form of an infant – the promise of a new world given once again.

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Luke 21:25-36 (NRSV)

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