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Tenth Sunday after Trinity (1885)

Luke 19:41-48 This Sunday is intended from time immemorial to commemorate the destruction of Jerusalem. Today's Gospel speaks about it and the month in which it falls is the same in which Jerusalem was destroyed. This happened on August 10, A.D. 70. The history of it has been handed down to us by a Jewish author (Josephus) who witnessed it firsthand and confirmed most exactly the Lord's prophecy. Jerusalem, the chosen one, the holy city where the Lord had fire and hearth1, the joy and delight of countless Old Testament children of God2, how it has been so cruelly destroyed! And the effects of that event still lie before our eyes in the destiny of the Jewish people, who since that time have no country, no more fatherland and enters into spiritual darkness and blindness. It had to be a frightful wrath that has corrupted this city and is held up as a warning to us all. The great judgment of God on Jerusalem: 1. of His emphatic prophecy; a. who preached it. It is the Lord Jesus Christ Who now holds His final entry into the city, God's Son, our Savior and Judge, before Whose judgment seat we must all appear.3 He proclaims to Jerusalem the great judgment with a merciful heart, yes, with tears.4 What a love that is expressed in the words: "If you only knew!" etc.; b. in what the judgment would consist. In the utter destruction of Jerusalem. "For the time will come upon you... the time of your visitation."5 And so it happened. The Romans closely surrounded Jerusalem, no one could escape. Distress, anxiety, pestilence, famine broke out and raged indescribably. Misery increased from day to day. Dreadful things happened. The Romans finally conquered the city; a soldier hurled a firebrand into the temple. There was no rescue. No stone was left unturned. Jerusalem was razed and leveled to the ground; 1,100,000 people lost their lives; 2. of His alarming reason; a. It is shown in the words: "Because you did not know the time of your visitation."6 Eloquent words! The time of visitation of a people, of a place or of individual people is the time of particular blessings of grace that should lead to repentance. Such gracious visitations begin especially when God lets His Word be proclaimed purely and abundantly, when He attracts,

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Isaiah 31:9. Psalm 137:5. 3 2 Corinthians 5:10. 4 Luke 19:41. 5 Luke 19:43-44. 6 Luke 19:44.

invites, threatens and punishes, when He pours out the Spirit of grace and prayer7, when He lets it rustle among the dry bones8. This is then all a blessed, a convenient time for being saved. But it has come to an end. "In this Your day"9 How important that it is recognized, used! When it's over, it's too late. One such glorious visitation of grace was then also on Jerusalem and broke into the entire Jewish people. The Messiah, the Son of God, was manifested.10 What infinitely rich streams of grace poured out there upon Israel, and particularly on Jerusalem in those days! So glorious, so regally, so full of grace, so completely in accordance with the prophecy of the Lord never previously came to Jerusalem. "Here I am, here I am!" the Lord shouted, as it were, to the people of Israel. But how did Israel receive the Helper, the Savior? They nailed Him to the cross and killed Him, they rejected their Messiah. They did not know the time of their visitation, it was hidden from them, by their own fault hidden what was for their peace. And this contempt for salvation, this blindness and obduracy, this rejection of the Savior - this was the true reason of Jerusalem's final destruction11; b. how about us? Should not our hearts quake at the judgment of God like the trees in the forest with the wind?12 After all, we truly live in a time of a great divine visitation of grace. How pure, how abundant we once again have the Word of God! The grace of God gushes in streams over us. But what does the world ask accordingly? How few use this time of grace, even many of those who call themselves Christians! The Lord's warning to Jerusalem was in vain; will it also be vain among us? Let us consider this our time that serves for our peace, that we may confidently look towards the time where God's judgment of wrath and the horrors of the last judgment will erupt over the world. G[eorg] S[tckhardt]

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Zechariah 12:10. Ezekiel 37:4-6. 9 Psalm 39:6, Job 7:6. 10 1 John 5:20; John 1:14; Zechariah 2:10. 11 Isaiah 29:10; Matthew 21:43; John 8:21; Matthew 23:33. 12 Isaiah 7:2.