Friday, Thirty Fourth Week in Ordinary Time
Rev 20:1-4,11–21:2; Ps 84:3-6,8; Lk 21:29-33
AMEN: SO BE IT!
The parable of the fig tree is the last parable in the Gospel of Luke. The fig tree in the Old Testament was used as a metaphor for the peace and prosperity of Israel. Therefore, the use of the phrase ‘fig tree and all the other trees’ refers to Israel and all the other nations of the world. Jesus is foretelling about the coming redemption. His words, ‘to see and know’, followed by ‘near’ are very significant. Just as when one sees the leaves sprouting one knows that the summer is near, so also when people would see the armies surrounding Jerusalem they would know that the destruction of Jerusalem was close at hand.
Jesus emphatically states by using the word ‘Amen’, that the world will end and the Son of Man will come to judge it. Hence, knowing to recognize the signs, we can decipher what they point to. But along with the warning also comes the assurance to the faithful, that heaven and earth will pass away but his words will never pass away.
In our modern context, we use the word ‘Amen’ at the end of a prayer, a petition or a thanksgiving. It only means that we are in agreement to the prayer or the idea that has been expressed. The meaning of the word ‘Amen’ is ‘So be it’. Hence, it is an expression of complete and total agreement. This word appears 143 times in the New Testament and about 100 times in the four gospel narrations.
However, there is a difference between our use of the word ‘Amen’ and the way Jesus uses it. Jesus always used it at the beginning of his statements, to emphatically state that he is speaking the truth, and that he is the giver of the truth. It means that Jesus is revealing an important teaching when he uses the term ‘Amen’. Jesus will certainly come with his power and glory to judge the world. Can I, with a sincere heart and an unwavering faith, say ‘Amen’ to this truth?
Responsorial Psalm: Behold, the dwelling of God is with men.
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