Some people would say that the text of today’s gospel is quite shocking (Luke 21:5-19).
For them, two words may summarize the scenes we are given to witness: abomination and desolation.
It is a rather accurate perception of the ‘mood’ of this text.
The detailed description of events to take place – or taking place – in our world has something frightening about it.
Having read the text to the end, it may be good to remain there, at the end… the last verse giving us a message that is most important (verse 19).
Different versions of this verse give an interesting perspective, telling us:
“Stand firm, and you will win life”. (New International Version
“Your endurance will win you your lives”. (Jerusalem Bible)
“By your perseverance you shall possess your souls”. (Aramaic Bible in Plain English)
In fact, what we are told is that:
- We should not give up trying to overcome the problems and difficulties of life.
- We should not give in to discouragement and despair.
- We should not give way to the temptation of abandoning the struggle for good to win over evil.
Someone has coined a new expression to qualify this endurance and called it ‘stick-to-itness’!
Stick to the fight against injustice and pursue the path of honesty.
Stick to the resolution of siding with the poor and those deprived of their rights.
Stick to the struggle you started always to choose the way of peace and reconciliation.
Would this not be a way to avoid disputes and injustices, recrimination and discrimination, violence and wars?
I like to believe that it is worth trying… it has a gospel felling about it…
Note: Another reflection is available on a different theme in French at: https://image-i-nations.com/33e-dimanche-de-lannee-c-2022/