The message of Prophet Daniel (12:1-3) is to prepare people to face the end of life gloriously. People were uncertain about the after-life. They could not understand why good people suffer and the wicked are not punished. The answer has to be found in the after-life. This passage in the book of Daniel is the first clear reference to an afterlife in the Hebrew tradition. It encourages believers to persevere in times of persecution and hardship. The author asserts that God will triumph over evil. While the evil ones will find everlasting horror, the wise, which opted for God and lived a righteous life will enter everlasting life and will shine like the stars.
The gospel (Mark 13:24-32) too presents a picture of the end of time. Most people are eager to know how and when it is going to end. The real issue is how we are to mould our life. No matter whether the world will end or not, it is certain that our individual life will come to an end on earth sooner or later. The exact day and time God only knows. In all respect, it would be wise to live a righteous life. For that person will have no anxiety about the end of days. Today’s gospel calls us to be both knowledgeable and willing to trust in the providence of God. Jesus counseled his own to watchfulness, prayerfulness and consciousness as regards their service. To his followers then and now, Jesus seems to say, “Consider well the quality of discipleship, and remember that the consequences thereof are everlasting.”
The letter to the Hebrews (10:11-14, 18) makes a comparison between the Jewish priesthood and the priesthood of Jesus. In the Jewish priesthood, the sacrifices were repeated and still did not have the power to take away sin. Jesus, by his personal sacrifice, has conquered sin once for all, and brought forgiveness. The Mass is a sacrifice because it is a sharing in the sacrifice, which is an eternal act. Whether the world will end today, tomorrow or never, the end of every person is sure and certain. Be prepared for it.