Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in various places. All these are the beginning of birth pains. – Matthew 24:7-8
In today’s parable, Yeshua tells us the tale of the sheep and goats at The Day of Judgment. The sheep get “eternal life” and inherit the Kingdom, while to goats are sentenced to “eternal punishment”.
What if none of that is correct, and almost all of our modern English bibles are in error?
Pointing to his disciples, he said, “Here are my mother and my brothers. For whoever does the will of my Father in heaven is my brother and sister and mother.” – Matthew 12:49-50
The time is surely coming, says the Lord GOD, when I will send a famine on the land; not a famine of bread, or a thirst for water, but of hearing the words of the LORD. – Amos 8:11
The beginning of wisdom is the most sincere desire for instruction, and concern for instruction is love of her, and love of her is the keeping of her laws, and giving heed to her laws is assurance of immortality, and immortality brings one near to God; so the desire for wisdom leads to a kingdom. – Wisdom of Solomon 6:17-20
Because of the increase of wickedness, the love of most will grow cold, but he who stands firm to the end will be saved. And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come. – Matthew 24:12-14
Dear friends, now we are children of God, and what we will be has not yet been made known. But we know that when he appears, we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is. – 1 John 3:2
Through only one sentence, Yeshua establishes a brand new theological system, based only on empathy, compassion, and devotion to God and each other. There is no mention of “self”, it all about loving God and everyone else.
Simple, clean, beautiful, and perfect.
… and how we screw it up.
To my mind and heart, today’s readings are heartbreaking examples of the maddeningly repetitive reality of human greed and lust for power. It never, ever ends well, for any society… ever.
“But real Christians – and this is the permanent truth which Jesus here lays down – are at one and the same time good citizens of their country and good citizens of the kingdom of heaven. They will fail in their duty neither to God nor to society.” – William Barclay, The Gospel of Matthew, Volume Two: 2 (New Daily Study Bible) (pp. 319-320)