“YOU WILL NOT SEE ME AGAIN UNTIL…” Thoughts from today’s Bible readings – Jan. 21st D.Caudery
In today’s ch. 23 in Matthew Jesus piles “Woe” upon “Woe” in his condemnation of the scribes and the Pharisees. Seven times (v.12,15,23,25,27,28,29) he denounces their hypocrisy or calls them “hypocrites.” What a warning this is for those who claim to follow Christ today – to make sure they have the ‘spirit’ of humility and sincerity in their hearts.
Jesus laments over Jerusalem because he knows the fate that awaits her. We particularly noticed his lament in v. 37, 38, “”O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the city that kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to it! How often would I have gathered your children together as a hen gathers her brood under her wings, and you were not willing! See, your house is left to you desolate.”
Our Lord expressed the divine desire to see a renewal of genuine spirituality in the chosen people to whom the Laws through Moses had been given. And there was a wondrous renewal in some after Jesus ascended to heaven and the disciples carried out his commission to them. This is given in the closing verses of Matthew’s gospel. Then the Lord called Paul to serve him and he spearheaded this work through the rest of the first Century.
This message was written down and spread throughout the world. There was a great time of renewal about 500 years ago when it was printed and circulated and increasingly available in more and more languages for all to read and many took into their hearts the original message of salvation
There was some degree of a final renewal of faith in the original message in the middle of the 19th Century as Dr. John Thomas in particular spoke and wrote and inspired many! Then from the middle of 20th Century, the wondrous miracle of the restoration of Israel and Jerusalem was the final divine challenge to the world to believe – and those who really read and absorbed the Scriptures did so – and felt inspired. But Israel’s “house” (Temple) is still “left … desolate”!
The final verse in today’s chapter has Jesus telling natural and spiritual Israelites who have spiritual “eyes” to see, “you will not see me again, until you say, ‘Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.’ ” Today some thousands in Israel believe in Jesus as their Messiah – and there are plans in hand among some to rebuild the Temple – and some are involved in preparing its contents. For ourselves let us live so that we are among those who “see (Jesus) again” and who are ready to say ” ‘Blessed is he (Jesus) who comes in the name of the Lord.'(God)”