The Gospel of Luke | Enduring Words | Luke 21.32-38 |

by | Dec 28, 2021

“Truly I tell you, this generation will certainly not pass away until all these things have happened. 33 Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will never pass away. 34 “Be careful, or your hearts will be weighed down with carousing, drunkenness and the anxieties of life, and that day will close on you suddenly like a trap. 35 For it will come on all those who live on the face of the whole earth. 36 Be always on the watch, and pray that you may be able to escape all that is about to happen, and that you may be able to stand before the Son of Man. 37 Each day Jesus was teaching at the temple, and each evening he went out to spend the night on the hill called the Mount of Olives,38 and all the people came early in the morning to hear him at the temple.” Luke 21.32-38

Jesus just gave a long discourse on the end times. He’s wrapping up his teaching in verses 32-38 as he speaks about how his “words will never pass away.” He also gives a warning about the anxieties of life, carousing, drunkenness, etc., and warns about ‘what is about to happen.”

The question is whether this message was intended only for his listeners or for us today? Was the destruction of the Temple, the sack of Jerusalem, the captivity of the people what Jesus was referring to or is it also a larger scope of the end times when this world ends and God’s new kingdom begins?

The chapter wraps up with how Jesus “was teaching at the temple, and each evening he went to spend the night on the hill called the Mount of Olives, and all the people came early in the morning to hear him at the temple.” Jesus’ enduring words are as significant as his presence among the people. He is the word made flesh according to John 1, so it’s not only important what he says about end times, anxieties of this world, or how to escape the hardships that are coming, but that he is among us.

We are returning to finish a study of the Gospel of Luke after a series on Advent, and the Christmas season. Immanuel has come, he is with us, God gave the gift of his Son to the world. Now, Christmas lights are being taken down, “Merry Christmas” is being replaced with greetings of “Happy New Year” and another season passes.

And even though the shift comes quickly, nothing really has changed in terms of God’s promises to us. The enduring words of Jesus, that he mentions in this passage in vs. 33, will remain. Jesus who was born in a stable under the stars is the same God yesterday, today and forever. He is the Lord of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. He is God among us, God with us.

Although this week most of us will be putting up our Christmas decorations, nativity scenes are boxed up, wrapping paper stations are packed away, and tree are transitioning either to the attic or to the curb for disposal, the Christ child remains. Jesus is near and he is hear. Don’t allow the shifting seasons to lessen your focus on the Lord. For although Christmas may be drawing to an end, his words endure. Allow Christ to reign in your hearts today and every day to come.

”O Lord God, it’s always a little depressing when we clean up from Christmas. Visiting the stores and seeing half priced trees, discounted lights, and huge lines for returning or exchanging gifts. But these are only signs of the worlds response to your arrival. Your word endures because you endure, you are the light in the darkness, the even present hope in times of trouble. You are the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. You are Immanuel, God with us. Come now, Holy Spirit, awaken our souls to your presence. Help us find strength and help in our time of need. Draw near to us as we draw near to you. For you are good and your love endures forever.” Amen