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Reversal of the Future


Jesus told the disciples, “Many who are now first will be last, and many who are now last will be first” (Mt 19:30). So, Jesus predicted a reversal of the future in the Kingdom of Heaven. Jesus clarified it through parables:

1. In the story of the Rich Man and Lazarus, after their death the angels carried the poor and sick Lazarus to the bosom of Abraham while the rich man ended up suffering in the nether world (Lk 16:19-31).

2. When the Prodigal Son returned with repentance, the father welcomed him into the family with honour while his brother refused to enter the house (Lk 15:11-32).

3. In the parable of the Pharisee and Tax Collector, who went to the Temple to pray, the sinful publican went home justified and not the righteous Pharisee (Lk 18:9-14).

Jesus advised his disciples, “The greatest among you must be your servant. Whoever exalts himself will be humbled; but whoever humbles himself will be exalted” (Mt 23:11-12). James says in his letter, “Listen, my beloved brothers. Did not God choose those who are poor in the world to be rich in faith and heirs of the kingdom that he promised to those who love him?” (Jas 2:5).

All the foregoing shows that God’s righteousness differs from human standards. People aspire to luxury and accomplishments in this world. Jesus wants his followers to offer their time, talents, and achievements for the sake of building up the Church and to support those who are in need. Then God will reward them in heaven. So, Jesus taught, “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and decay destroy, and thieves break in and steal. But store up treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor decay destroys, nor thieves break in and steal” (Mt 6:19-20).


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