Beer Truck Eschatology

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My parishioner and friend, WEV, lives his life under the Beer Truck Principle.  That is, you never know when your life might be suddenly ended by an unfortunate meeting with a beer truck, so you better live your life to the fullest in every moment.  WEV chose a beer truck as the design of his untimely end, but Jesus, as you might assume, has something even more cosmic in mind.

The second half of Sunday’s Gospel lesson seems to mark a change.  While the lesson begins with what appears to be the tidying up of some stewardship loose ends from last Sunday’s lesson, Jesus’ attention shifts from a focus on foolishness of storing up treasures on earth at the end of our individual lives to the reality that someday, the whole world is going to come to an end.  In only a few short verse, Jesus introduces the idea of a Beer Truck Eschatology.  We know not the hour when God will bring forth the new heaven and the new earth, so we are best served living lives of faithful discipleship in every moment; being fully prepared for that day and hour, which know one knows, when the Son of Man will return.

While we might quibble with the motivation for our faithful discipleship, the reality that someday, Jesus will return and it would behoove us to be found living the life of the Kingdom that is coming seems as good a motivation as any.  How do we live lives worthy of the Master’s good pleasure?  We care for the poor, the outcast, and the oppressed.  We proclaim the Good News of God’s salvation in word and deed.  We seek justice for every human being.  We love God with all our heart, soul, mind, and strength and we love our neighbors as ourselves.

This isn’t easy, to be sure.  And neither would it have been easy for the slaves to keep watch for their Master when wedding feasts were known to last days on end.  But the reward for faithfulness is beyond all measure.  That the Master would stoop down to serve his slaves is unimaginable, and yet, that’s precisely how Jesus describes the age to come for those who are found ready when the Son of Man comes.

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