From the fig tree learn its lesson: as soon as its branch becomes tender and puts out its leaves, you know that summer is near. So also, when you see all these things, you know that he is near, at the very gates. Truly, I say to you, this generation will not pass away until all these things take place. Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away.
Their journey into enemy territory began with a promise. The mission was to take a certain amount of time, and there always was a risk of capture. If they did not return in time, reinforcements would be sent to rescue them. Unfortunately for them, they were captured almost immediately after crossing that border. There was no way to get word back to their land, and they would have to wait for that time to lapse before they could even hope of being delivered. Each man was trapped in solitary darkness without exposure to the outside world, and no one could know how long they were in captivity. It must have seemed like years, but they were rescued as soon as the time was right. It might have felt like forever, but that promise of salvation indeed would come to pass.
This world can be a very dark place, and it might seem darker for some than for others. The word of God tells us that no man knows the hour or the day of the return of the Son, but that should not discourage us. We have a promise that He will come back and rescue each one of his followers, and we can rely on that promise. The words of our Lord are not temporary encouragement to pacify us. He does not give empty guarantees without the intention to fulfill what He says. Things might get so tough that it seems like his arrival will never occur, but we know that is a lie. The words of the Lord, the promises of the Lord, will stand the test of time and remain even when time ceases to exist. His promises are eternal, and our salvation is eternal.
There is a reason why we can find rest and peace in this volatile world. We have the promise of a completely different future ahead of us. It is a future to which our imperfect present drastically pales in comparison. There is nothing so evil, so terrible, so dark that it will change the future of grace and light which the Lord promises for those who love him. We will experience many distractions which attempt to convince us that the guarantees of God are too good to be true, but we must rail against those distractions. What the Lord says will come to pass indeed will come to pass. Father, increase our faith that we would not lose the great hope You have given us but that we would await your Son’s return with greater eagerness daily.