Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Here comes the apocalypse

If I had to pick a religious term that is the most misunderstood it would have to be apocalypse. The word literally means to uncover. It's why in English we call the a letter at the end of the New Testament the Book of Revelation.

What is being revealed? The Kingdom of God.

In today's first reading we hear the dream and the interpretation of the dream by Daniel.

Daniel tells the king that

In the lifetime of those kings the God of heaven will set up a kingdom that shall never be destroyed or delivered up to another people; rather, it shall break in pieces all these kingdoms and put an end to them, and it shall stand forever.

For us Christians that Kingdom is the Kingdom brought into being by the incarnation, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. And as this past Sunday's celebration reminded us we are all citizens in that kingdom. The kingdom is open to all. God wills that all people be a part of the kingdom.

The Book of Daniel is an example of Apocalyptic literature. The apocalypse, the unveiling is not a frightening thing. It is the unveiling of the glory of God. Yes, it reminds us of the passing quality of all earthly kingdoms, but is that a bad thing? Perhaps it offers us perspective and humility.