November 19, 2000

Mark 13:1-8

As [Jesus] walked away from the Temple, one of his disciples said, "Teacher, look at that stonework! Those buildings!"

Jesus said, "You're impressed by this grandiose architecture? There's not a stone in the whole works that is not going to end up in a heap of rubble."

Later, as he was sitting on Mount Olives in full view of the Temple, Peter, James, John, and Andrew got him off by himself and asked, "Tell us, when is this going to happen? What sign will we get that things are coming to a head?"

Jesus began, "Watch out for doomsday deceivers. Many leaders are going to show up with forged identities claiming, 'I'm the One.' They will deceive a lot of people. When you hear of wars and rumored wars, keep your head and don't panic. This is routine history, and no sign of the end. Nation will fight nation and ruler fight ruler, over and over. Earthquakes will occur in various places. There will be famines. But these things are nothing compared to what's coming."



1. If you have not already done so, run, don't walk, to get "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy." This is a must read for folks who don't want to panic. It cannot be synopsized other than by the number 42 - when you read it you will find out what that means.

2. So what impresses you these days? There has been a lot of press recently about elections. Does that impress you to the point of calling the latest evidence of human error a world-shattering crisis? Are you tied to one outcome or the other to such an extent that you would put yourself in the category of "I'm the One" who knows what is coming down the pike. Wasn't it President Ike who put Justice Warren on the Supreme Court - the future is always open to change.

3. An earthquake which shakes us to our very foundations is nothing compared to the shaking and sifting of our lives, individual and corporate, to come. This seems to call for a word of "thanks" in the present and an assurance of "trust" in days to come. This is the time to practice both.

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