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by | Feb 22, 2023 | Heaven, Second Coming, Signs

“But in those days, after that tribulation, the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light, and the stars will be falling from heaven, and the powers in the heavens will be shaken. And then they will see the Son of Man coming in clouds with great power and glory. And then He will send out the angels and gather His elect from the four winds, from the ends of the earth to the ends of heaven. From the fig tree learn its lesson: as soon as its branch becomes tender and puts out its leaves, you know that summer is near. So also, when you see these things taking place, you know that He is near, at the very gates. Truly, I say to you, this generation will not pass away until all these things take place. Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will not pass away. But concerning that day or that hour, no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father. Be on guard, keep awake. For you do not know when the time will come. It is like a man going on a journey, when he leaves home and puts his servants in charge, each with his work, and commands the doorkeeper to stay awake. Therefore stay awake—for you do not know when the master of the house will come, in the evening, or at midnight, or when the rooster crows, or in the morning—lest he come suddenly and find you asleep. And what I say to you I say to all: Stay awake.” (Mark 13:24-37 ESV)

Mark 13 is one of the Bible’s greatest chapters of foreboding. Jesus isn’t mincing words as He speaks with Peter, James, John, and Andrew. Jesus is telling them to be alert, to pay attention to the signs. But then, how could anyone possibly miss them, with the sun going dark, the absent moon, and the stars falling in the heavens? It would be kind of hard to be dozing through all of that, wouldn’t it?

One would think.

But, then again, we’re pretty adept at hearing what we want to hear, seeing only what we want to see. We do it all the time. We might think, “The urgency of God’s return … yeah, that’s a good one. It’s been like two-thousand years since Jesus was here, and God knows how long since creation took place. I’m a-thinking I’m good—at least in my lifetime.”

How easy it is to be lulled into thinking it will always be “business as usual.” All our habits are pre-set in that direction. Yet, even if we’re oblivious to outward signs from God in the heavens, He has already given us the greatest sign—right in our hearts. For “God, who said, ‘Let light shine out of darkness,’ has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ” (2 Corinthians 4:6).

This is God’s greatest sign—His signature across the ages—that He sent His Son to save us and that Jesus is coming back to take us to Himself (see John 14:3).

Prayer: Heavenly Father, though we get lost in the weeds sometimes, raise our sights to Your Son and His coming salvation. In His Name we pray. Amen.

This Daily Devotion was written by Paul Schreiber.
Used by permission from International Lutheran Laymen’s League, all rights reserved

Reflection Questions:
1. Have you ever seen a meteorite (“falling star”) shoot across the sky? Where were you?
2. What do you think your response would been had Jesus said the words above to you?
3. Have you ever been “asleep at the wheel” to something perilous happening in your life? Care to share?