Tuesday of the Thirty-third week in Ordinary Time
(Revelation 3:1-6.14-22; Luke 19:1-10)
The old woman listens to the news with a dose of chagrin. It may be fires in California or hurricanes in Florida that sets her off. She believes that these catastrophes are a message from God. She says, “God is trying to tell us something, but no one is listening.” The Book of Revelation has a similar theme.
The opening chapters of the book contain letters written to the churches of Asia Minor. The seer John is relaying God’s warning to Christians who are not living the faith they profess. One letter, which is read today, is addressed to the progressive community at Sardis. It accepted the Christian message with enthusiasm a generation or two ago. Now, as it wants to move on to something else, John calls it back to its original commitment. Similarly the church of Laodicea is not living up to the gospel. It is no better or worse than other peoples. That is scandalous for a people who claim to follow Christ. John will have no more to do with them that he would with rotten a rotten apple.
The Book of Revelation is timely in every generation. It certainly is so today. We live in an age where solidarity among people is regularly ignored. We construct homes in gated communities. And play games with ourselves on our personal telephones. These are not ways to prepare for Christ’s return.