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Keep the Faith

(Jesus said) “When you hear of wars and insurrections, do not be terrified; for these things must take place first, but the end will not follow immediately.” Then he said to them, “Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom; there will be great earthquakes, and in various places famines and plagues; and there will be dreadful portents and great signs from heaven.

“But before all this occurs, they will arrest you and persecute you; they will hand you over to synagogues and prisons, and you will be brought before kings and governors because of my name. … You will be betrayed even by parents and brothers, by relatives and friends; and they will put some of you to death. You will be hated by all because of my name. But not a hair of your head will perish. By your endurance you will gain your souls.”

— Luke 21:9-12; 16-19

This week’s Gospel has two parts — beware and trust. It starts out as something fearful, telling you that all of these horrible things will happen. It ends on a hopeful note, though, saying if you keep your trust in God, your soul will be rewarded.

In the first part, Jesus warns of disaster — wars, earthquakes, famine, and plagues. He says before all of these horrible things are to happen, though, there will be religious persecution. Jesus warns that we will be betrayed and hated, but if we don’t give up our faith we will be rewarded in heaven.

When we see all of the awful things in the world today — drought, starvation, hurricanes, tornadoes, and mass shootings, just to name a few — it is easy to question God, wondering why He lets things happen. Many lose their faith when things get tough or horrible events occur. But Jesus tells us not to give up our hope and trust in him, and through him we will gain eternal life.

Our life was never meant to be easy. Lots of horrible things can happen, but we need to maintain our faith so we can be rewarded in the end. For with “your endurance you will gain your souls.”

Shari Van Baale
Salem Communications Coordinator

Tags: Weekly Word