Saturday of the thirty-fourth week in Ordinary Time – Year B

Posté par diaconos le 27 novembre 2021

A quote from Modern Jesus: “Stay awake and pray not to be put to the test.”

s in glory and majesty, and Orthodoxy, where the expectation is symbolised by an empty throne.  In early Christian writings, notably those of Paul of Tarsus, the word means the coming of Christ among men. Adolf Deissmann showed that the term appeared as early as the third century BC to designate the official visit of a prince or high dignitary to a city to prove his magnificence. The fourth-century Nicene symbol professes the parousia in the following terms: ‘Sedet ad dexteram Patris.

Et iterum venturus est cum gloria iudicare vivos et mortuos, cuius regni non erit finis. (He is seated at the right hand of the Father, he will come again in glory to judge the living and the dead, and his kingdom will have no end. In Hellenistic philosophy, the word describes the actual presence of deities. Plato used it to designate the presence of ideas in things. Augustine of Hippo, in Book XX of The City of God, cited the texts of the Old and New Testaments that refer to the Day of Judgement.

He confirmed that Christ will return first for the Judgement, after which the dead will be raised. The parousia inaugurates the messianic times and the coming (the ‘second coming’) of Christ at the end of time.

The parousia inaugurates the messianic times and the coming (the « second coming ») of Christ at the end of time. In Christian theology, the Second Coming is the glorious return of Jesus Christ to establish definitively the Kingdom of God on Earth. This second coming was announced by Jesus Christ himself in the Gospel of John. In Karl Barth’s Dogmatics, the parousia is not limited to the second coming of Christ.

Karl Barth distinguished three manifestations of the parousia: the first figure of the parousia is for him the paschal event, i.e. the resurrection of Jesus; the second, or « middle figure », is the « gift of the Holy Spirit » at Pentecost, the outpouring of the Spirit to the Church; the third, the « last figure », is the « coming of Jesus Christ as the finality of the history of the Church, the world and every man ».

This is how Barth defines the « Last Day »: the « new coming » of what has come before, the « new being with us of him who was with us ». This threefold manifestation of the parousia must not be broken down into three separate events; rather, it must be understood in its unity.

From the Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint Luke

At that time Jesus said to his disciples, « Be on your guard, lest your hearts become heavy with drinking and drunkenness and the cares of life, and that day fall on you unexpectedly like a net; for it will fall on all the inhabitants of the whole earth.  Stay awake and pray at all times, so that you may be able to escape all that is to come, and stand before the Son of Man. (Lk 21, 34-36)

Waiting for the return of Christ

From these great future events, Jesus turned the disciples’ thoughts back to themselves and to the moral and religious life that had to prepare them for them. Two traps were set for them : the carnal pleasures that weigh down the heart and the worries of life. Jesus also pointed them out elsewhere (Lk 8, 14)

« For like a net he will come upon all who dwell on the face of the whole earth. (Lk 21:35) On that day, the great day of Jesus’ coming which has just been announced and which is represented everywhere in Scripture as unexpected, an object of universal surprise, Jesus addressed these words to his disciples of all times. He wanted them to wait for that day in holy vigilance, as if it could surprise them at any moment; hence the ignorance in which Jesus left them about the time of his coming.

The early Church lived in expectation of the coming return of Christ, and this expectation remains the true disposition of the Christian, the more so because he is uncertain of the hour of his death. Vigilance and prayer are the two great means of escaping the dangers of the last trial and of remaining in the presence of the Son of Man (Mt. 26, 41). What majesty there is in this word, by which he who is the son of man announced himself as the judge of the world !

Deacon Michel Houyoux

Links to other Christian websites

◊ Reflexions of the sacred Liturgy :    Saturday of the Thirty-fourth Week in Ordinary Time, year B

◊  Saturday of the Thirty-Fourth Week in Ordinary Time …

   Pastor Vergin : « .Sermon (11/22/20) – « Waiting for Jesus’ Return »"

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