In this passage, Jesus seems to be talking about the end of the world! He indicates bad stuff is going to happen and it must have been pretty frightening to hear.
Actually, when Luke wrote this passage, it was probably after some seriously bad stuff had happened in Jerusalem. The very Temple Jesus refers to was destroyed by the Roman Army in 70 a.d. and things weren’t great for the Jewish people – including the followers of Jesus.
Jesus seems to be saying “Hang on in there, people!” He doesn’t promise his followers that all will be well. In fact, he says that they are going to suffer persecution, harassment, betrayal and even death. He tells them not to be led astray by people making false promises and claims – something we all need to consider carefully as the British General Election campaign is in full swing.
Loving God, help us to be faithful.
Give us strength when we are belittled, made fun of or harassed because of our faith.
Help us to stay true to your teachings which call us to compassion, to forgiveness, to fairness and to love.
We pray this in the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. AMEN