Signs for an Evil Generation

Luke 11: 29-32
Gal 4: 22-24,26-27,31 / Psa 113

This is a wicked generation. It seeks a sign, but none will be given it except the sign of Jonah. For as Jonah was a sign to the Ninevites, so will the Son of Man be to this generation.
(Luke 11:29-30)

The Jews did not believe to their loss
All the wonders that Jesus did
As Christians all we have is the cross
As the only sign we will need.

As the crowds increased, Jesus said, “This is a wicked generation. It seeks a sign, but none will be given it except the sign of Jonah. For as Jonah was a sign to the Ninevites, so will the Son of Man be to this generation. The Queen of the South will rise at the judgment with the men of this generation and condemn them; for she came from the ends of the earth to listen to Solomon’s wisdom, and now one greater than Solomon is here. The men of Nineveh will stand up at the judgment with this generation and condemn it; for they repented at the preaching of Jonah; now one greater than Jonah is here. (Luke 11:29-32)

Reflection

Jesus had just exorcized an evil spirit from a mute person, and the crowd had been amazed when the former mute person began to speak. But instead of hearing and observing the Word of God after witnessing this wondrous deed, most of the Jews and their leaders chose to reject Jesus, and even attributed His power to cast out demons to Satan. Indeed our Lord was justified in calling them “a wicked generation”. They were not interested in listening to the spiritual truths that the Son of God was teaching them; they only wanted to see Him perform signs and wonders for their entertainment, or for making out Jesus as a “magician” if not a representative of the prince of evil (Beelzebul).

Both Jesus and the prophet Jonah were God’s signs of repentance. Future generations of Jesus’ followers would also recall later their identical entombment for three days (Jonah’s in the belly of a fish). But if Jonah, the reluctant prophet who hated the Ninevites, could turn them to repentance even without a sign from heaven, why couldn’t the Jews believe the Son of God Himself Who was performing miracles in their midst?

Many would also recall the prophetic words of another prophet, old Simeon, when the child Jesus was presented in the temple, who said, “This child is destined for the fall and rise of many in Israel, and to be a sign that will be contradicted so that the thoughts of many hearts may be revealed” (Lk.2:34-35). And so it was that at every turn, Jesus, the Son of God was contradicted by His critics and detractors. And the greatest contradiction of all was His crucifixion, which became the crux of mankind’s salvation.

When Jesus said the prophet Jonah and the Queen of the South “will rise at the judgment with the men of this generation and condemn it”, He was signifying the Resurrection in the last days when all souls will stand before the Judgment Seat of God. What about our own generation? What would our Lord Jesus say about the way our religious, political and business leaders have put their faith in their positions of power and wealth? We can only wonder what signs could possibly convince these “leaders” (especially the politicians and bureacrats with hidden wealth) to turn to repentance and finally believe the Word of God that justice awaits them in the not-so-distant future. Perhaps only a sign from heaven can save this blind and “evil generation”.

Lord Jesus, You have taught us in today’s Gospel not to look for signs to prove that You are really our Lord and Savior. It is enough for us to behold your cross to make us believe and repent of our sins. We know we are the ones who still have much to prove to be worthy of Your love and great sacrifice. Amen.

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