Mention of the ‘End Times’ cropped up more often than usual over the last eight years. There are many reasons for suggesting it and I’m sure many think it is upon us because of Democrats and, in the same vein, others know it has to be the fault of the Republicans. During the last two presidential elections, I quickly learned that one party was allowed to wear or post their preference in the election but beware if the other party expressed their views publically. Even within the confines of the Church Family, ridicule and nastiness ensued. Well, it was a time of situations when one might wish for the final days of earth but, nope, not one real sign of the End Times presented itself.
According to a book I am reading, The End of the Present World and the Mysteries of the Future Life., “The first of the events foreshadowing the end of time is one to which the Savior refers in Matthew 24:14, when He says, “This good news of the Kingdom will be proclaimed throughout the world as a witness to all nations. Only after that will the end come.”
*Well, certainly can’t check that one off the list yet, can we?
“The second of these signs will be the appearance of the man of sin, the Antichrist.”
*Again, lots of contenders but none with all the credentials . . . yet.
“The third: the conversion of the Jewish people, who will adore the Lord Jesus and recognize Him as the promised Messiah.”
*Now, that has definitely not happened.
In the meantime, The End of the Present World and the Mysteries of the Future Life. has some quotes to ponder which can be seen/applied to the world today.
“At present many signs point to a great victory for Christianity. Do not our enemies have a presentiment of it? Does not a secret instinct warn them that the days of their power are numbered, and that the time when it is given to them to prevail cannot be of long duration? This is why they enlist in the war they wage against the Church all the hateful corruption, all the hypocrisies anxious to drop their masks, all the hostile sciences, all the shady and godless politics. The revolution boldly raises its standard against religion, property, and the family; saps the foundations of the social structure; and mounts its attacks against use simultaneously, and on every front. The press, freed from every restraint, disseminates the most subversive doctrines and the deadliest poisons in a thousand organs.”
Again, sounds like the whole End Times stuff is coming down on us just as soon as we get those three, above-mentioned signs. Maybe, probably not as the book from which these quotes come was originally published in 1881.
The End of the Present World and the Mysteries of the Future Life
by Father Charles Arminjon
Translated by Susan Conroy and Peter McEnerny
“Blessed be the Lord,
The God of Israel;
He has come to His people and set them free.
He has raised up for us a mighty Saviour,
Born of the house of His servant David.
Through His holy prophets He promised of old
That He would save us from our enemies,
From the hands of all who hate us.
He promised to show mercy to our fathers
And to remember His holy Covenant.
This was the oath He swore to our father Abraham:
To set us free from the hands of our enemies,
Free to worship Him without fear,
Holy and righteous in His sight
All the days of our life.
You, My child shall be called
The prophet of the Most High,
For you will go before the Lord to prepare His way,
To give his people knowledge of salvation
By the forgiveness of their sins.
In the tender compassion of our Lord
The dawn from on high shall break upon us,
to shine on those who dwell in darkness
And the shadow of death,
And to guide our feet into the way of peace.”
~Canticle of Zechariah, Luke 1:68-79
“All things have their season: and in their times all things pass under heaven.
A time to be born, and a time to die. A time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted.
A time to kill, and a time to heal. A time to destroy, and a time to build.
A time to weep, and a time to laugh. A time to mourn, and a time to dance.
A time to scatter stones, and a time to gather. A time to embrace, and a time to be far from embrace.
A time to get, and a time to lose. A time to keep, and a time to cast away.
A time to rend, and a time to sew. A time to keep silence, and a time to speak.
A time to love, and a time of hatred. A time of war, and a time of peace.
Ecclesiastes Chapter 3:1-8
We all know the miracle of the loaves and fishes where Jesus blessed the bread and fish and it feed thousands of people with plenty to spare. Well, I was reading the Gospel of Matthew and noticed something I don’t think I’ve ever run across before. In Matthew 14:16-17, Jesus blessed five loaves and two fishes which fed 5,000 people besides women and children with twelve baskets of fragments left over.
I went on to read Matthew 15:33-38 and it reveals a second such miracle where Jesus blesses seven loaves and several small fishes which fed 4,000 people besides women and children with seven baskets of fragments left over.
A little more investigation reflects that Mark 6:36-44 states that five loaves and two fishes were blessed and fed five thousand with twelve baskets of fragments left over. And, in seeming agreement with Matthew, Mark 8:1-9 and states that 4,000 were fed from seven loaves and a few little fishes with seven baskets of fragments collected after the meal.
Luke and John, however, only describe the one miracle they all wrote down.
Luke 9:12-17 and, again, there were five loaves and two fishes that fed five thousand with twelve baskets of fragments left over.
John 6: 1-14 is a bit more specific and says there were five barley loaves and two fishes and agrees with the other Gospels that there were 5,000 fed with twelve baskets of fragments collected.
I’m sure Biblical scholars have gone into great detail on figuring out the reasoning behind this but they are more studied than I am so I will just enjoy the fact that Jesus could feed many from so little, something we might take into consideration when others are lacking and need help.
Most of my life, I relied on the Readings and Gospels at Mass for my Biblical studies/information. Lately, I’ve taken the time to delve into some of the Books of the Bible that I know about but haven’t read about and finding so many gems of wisdom that astound me . . . although, given the Author, it really shouldn’t be a surprise. Seems like the self-proclaimed Christians and politicians in office might do some looking of their own. It just might change the world to the better!
“By mercy and truth iniquity is redeemed: and by the fear of the Lord men depart from evil.”
“When the ways of man shall please the Lord, he will convert even his enemies to peace.”
“In the fear of the Lord is confidence of strength; and there shall be hope for his children. The fear of the Lord is a fountain of life, to decline from the ruin of death.”
“Justice exalteth a nation but sin maketh nations miserable.”
“In the path of Justice is life: but the by-way leadeth to death.”