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The Signs of the Times

Sweetwater Recorder

By Ronald G. Currell

St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church,

Jesus said, "you can discern the face of the sky; but you can not discern the signs of the times."

Jesus had been traveling from city to city throughout Galilee until he’d come to the Mediterranean Sea, near Tyre and Sidon. A woman entreated Him about her possessed daughter, "Oh son of David," she called out. Jesus considered her. He considered her request. She was asking the son of David to heal her daughter. She was asking the Messiah of the Jews, the Messiah of the Jewish expectation. But He could not help her as just a Jewish Messiah. "I am not sent but unto the lost sheep of the house of Israel," He told her, as this son of David. She countered. "Lord: even the dogs eat of the crumbs, which fall from their masters' table". Then, Jesus answered her, but this time as the Messiah of the world, "O woman, great is thy faith: be it unto thee even as thou wilt." Throughout the Scriptures, whenever Jesus was entreated as the son of David, He taught someone that He was the son of Man.

Jesus left that place and went back up into the hill country until Korazin was to His left, Cana was to His right, and Magdala was ahead and a crowd followed Him to a small mountain. A lot of them had been with Him for three days. During this time He taught them and many were brought to Him. There were those who were lame, blind, dumb, maimed, and the crowd cast them down at Jesus' feet; and he healed them. The multitude marveled, when they saw the dumb speak, the maimed made whole, the lame walk, and the blind see: they glorified the God of Israel. Then they were hungry and Jesus would not send them away hungry. With just a few loaves and fish, Jesus fed all four thousand.

After these things, Jesus headed straight to the Sea of Galilee and caught a ship near Capernaum bound for Magdala. As soon as He had landed, He was confronted by a group of Pharisees and Sadducees, who had heard of all Jesus had done. They tempted Him for a sign from heaven. So, Jesus reminded them about the nature of His Kingdom, about all that had happened, "The blind receive sight, the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised up, the poor have the Gospel preached to them." But they didn’t understand what it meant. The Kingdom was dawning full in their faces and they just didn’t see it. Jesus told them, "When it is evening, you say, It will be fair weather: for the sky is red.

And in the morning, you say, It will be foul weather to day: for the sky is red and lowering. You can discern the face of the sky; but you can not discern the signs of the times." Jesus was the Ultimate sign of the times. His presence marked the breaking through of the Divine into human affairs. His deeds were signposts marking the arrival of the Kingdom of God. Besides this, the only sign He would give them was the sign of Jonah.

Just as the people of Sweetwater need different Christian experiences, the various Christian Churches offer different expressions of the same faith. St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church offers a quiet, respectful hour dedicated to God every Sunday Morning at 11:00 AM, preceded by a thought-provoking Bible Class at 9:45, where we discuss intriguing passages from the Scriptures. Drop by some time. See us on the Internet and experience our online chapel at www.ststephens.net.

Please make plans to attend your Church-of-choice this coming Sunday.

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