Evangelical Lutheran Diocese of North America

Thursday after the Twenty-Second Sunday after Trinity Sunday

Posted on November 9, 2023 by Pastor Dulas under Devotions
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Scripture: St. Luke 21:5-9 (NKJV)
21:5 Then, as some spoke of the temple, how it was adorned with beautiful stones and donations, He said, 6 “These things which you see—the days will come in which not one stone shall be left upon another that shall not be thrown down.”
7 So they asked Him, saying, “Teacher, but when will these things be? And what sign will there be when these things are about to take place?”
8 And He said: “Take heed that you not be deceived. For many will come in My name, saying, ‘I am He,’ and, ‘The time has drawn near.’ Therefore do not go after them. 9 But when you hear of wars and commotions, do not be terrified; for these things must come to pass first, but the end will not come immediately.”
At the time of the writing of today’s devotion, war had broken out between the Israelis and Palestinians. All sorts of atrocities had been reported and this war may still be going on as you read this.
What needs to be restated clearly is that the present-day nation of Israel is not to be seen as God’s “Chosen People.” Too many Christians think that the modern nation of Israel holds that special place in the eyes of God. People have forgotten St. Paul’s words to the Galatians, especially chapter 3: “So then those who are of faith are blessed with believing Abraham.”
The question for Christians who think Israel is still a holy people in the eyes of God is simply, “Why, then, did Christ predict the destruction of Jerusalem?” The answer: “Because Israel had rejected the Christ.”
The world that surrounds us is filled with unbelievers who carry out the atrocities we see in the news. What is taking place around us is exactly what Jesus was talking about, “wars and commotions.” So Jesus also offers up words of comfort, “do not be afraid.” Let us not get so caught up in what we see going on around us, “wars and commotions,” that we forget that we belong to Jesus through faith in Him. Let us also pray that those who do not have faith in Jesus Christ may repent and believe, so that they may truly be God’s Chosen People.
Prayer: O God, our Refuge and Strength, Who art the Author of all godliness: Be ready, we beseech Thee, to hear the devout prayers of Thy Church; and grant that those things which we ask faithfully, we may obtain effectually; through Jesus Christ, Thy Son, our Lord, Who liveth and reigneth with Thee and the Holy Ghost, ever One God, world without end. Amen.
Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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