3.19.2015 Thursday of Lent 4 Mark 13:1-23 Conditions that will exist prior to the end
Mark 13 is referred to by many as “the little Apocalypse.” It is the last long teaching of Jesus in Mark, as though it were a farewell speech. The destruction of the temple is predicted and the disciples privately asked Him when this would occur and what would be the sings of the end. But these signs mark on the beginning of the end; earthquakes, wars, and persecution. The end will not come until the Gospel is preached to nations.
Before the end, there will be natural disasters and Christ’s followers will be persecuted. During the darkest days to the Second World War Prime Minister Winston Churchill address a frightful nation by saying, “this is not the beginning nor is this the end, it is the beginning of the end.” Daily this world is slowly passing away. Do not be concerned with the momentary things of this world, which quickly passes away. Instead, keep your sights heavenward. Onward and upward is the direction of the Christian.
Almighty and most merciful God, drive from us all weakness of body, mind and spirit; that, being restored to wholeness, we may with free hearts become what you intend us to be and accomplish what you want us to do; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, forever and ever. Amen