Kids Korner: Destruction of the temple (November 13th)

Read Luke 21:5-19 with your family.

Every time we read the Bible we have to remember both the people around Jesus when the stories first happen and the people with the writer who heard the stories after they were written down. Listening with our imagination in two places will show us if the message of the story was for the people with Jesus or the people decades later reading and learning about Jesus through the stories.

When the people first heard this story read from the Gospel of Luke, the Temple in Jerusalem had already been destroyed by the Roman army (it was destroyed about 40 years after Jesus’ resurrection). The Hebrew tradition was focused on the Temple because they believed God lived there, and the destruction of the temple meant the destruction of their way of understanding and caring for God. The Hebrew people were very sad.

Jesus never told his followers that he was more important than the Temple, but he did tell them God lived in all people, not just the Temple. That meant God was for all people, not only those who lived in the Holy Land.

The people who heard the story from the Gospel of Luke understood that even though the Temple was destroyed and Jesus was crucified on the cross, God was still very much alive with the people. Jesus was resurrected, but the temple was never rebuilt. God was no longer restricted to one place.

All the floods and wars and hard times were not predictions to watch for, they were normal life that people all over the world experience. Jesus was not giving us a checklist of bad things until something good happened. Jesus was telling us that even in the bad things, God is there and ready to work with us to make a new world where this things will stop happening.

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