A Sorrowful Prediction

Luke 13: 31-35
Eph 6:10-20 / Psa 144

. . . how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, and you were not willing. Look, your house is left to you desolate.
(Luke 13:34)

Jerusalem as predicted,
Is still a city divided.
But our Lord has resurrected,
And Satan has been defeated.

At that time some Pharisees came to Jesus and said to him, “Leave this place and go somewhere else. Herod wants to kill you.” He replied, “Go tell that fox, ‘I will keep on driving out demons and healing people today and tomorrow, and on the third day I will reach my goal.’ In any case, I must press on today and tomorrow and the next day—for surely no prophet can die outside Jerusalem! Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who kill the prophets and stone those sent to you, how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, and you were not willing. Look, your house is left to you desolate. I tell you, you will not see me again until you say, ‘Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.’” (Lk.13:31-35).

Reflection

The paradox of man’s salvation (or damnation) in the context of God’s grace and man’s free will comes to mind as we reflect on today’s Gospel passage of Luke, and on John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” We can only wonder then why even in His love for His greatest creation, giving up His only Son in the process, God could still allow a great number of humanity to end up in hell.

For instance, consider the city of Jerusalem. Jesus naturally loved Jerusalem, the city of His fond memories. But He could not save it from its own destruction because the people refused to accept Him as the Messiah. Even as He knew (being God) that this city would be destroyed by the Romans in AD 70, and continue to be torn by strife for the next thousands of years, He could only weep over it, accepting God’s will.

The greater paradox of human history is that in spite of God’s love for Jerusalem, it has been left by time because of its people’s hardness of heart. Perhaps this was what our Lord meant when He said, “The first shall be the last.” But the whole world has been saved, because the Messiah has resurrected and His Good News has spread to the rest of the world. Satan was gravely mistaken, because he thought that Jerusalem was the only place that mattered, as here our Lord would be crucified. The Pharisees thought (under the influence of Satan) that they could lure Jesus from Galilee to Jerusalem by telling Him that Herod was looking for a way to kill Him, but Jesus told them that He was following the Father’s “timeline”, and would meet His destiny there “on the third day”. No threat from Herod could change God’s will.

We attain salvation according to the will of God Who loves us, and also because we acknowledge Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior. And it is integral in our faith that we will never question the will of God, because His commandments we respectfully hold as sacred and inviolate. In our obedience is our “free will” defined.

Father God, we submit to Your will in our life because we believe You only have the best in mind for us, especially in regard to our ultimate salvation. Please keep us always on the straight path as our Saviour Jesus has led us in His teachings. Amen.

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