Daily Reflection
November 17th, 2004
Howie Kalb, S.J.
Jesuit Community
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Most of us have a difficult time finding a message in the apocalyptic writing in the Book of Revelation.  The first step is to shift from any kind of literal thought to symbolic thinking.  For the meaning everyone is pretty much on his/her own.  Symbolically for me, it seems to be showing God in the heavenly court with the figures of speech describing God’s divine attributes. 

There is his IMMUTABULITY: “Holy, holy, holy is the Lord God Almighty, who was, and who is, and who is to come.” 

His creative powers prove OMNIPOTENCE: “Worthy are you, Lord our God, to receive glory and honor and power, for you created all things: because of your will they came to be and were created.”

The rich colors emphasize God’s BEAUTY: “…and on the throne sat one whose appearance sparkled like jasper and carnelian.  Around the throne was a halo as brilliant as an emerald.”

Knowing all things both hidden and manifest reflects OMNISCENCE:  The four living creatures, each of them with six wings, were covered with eyes inside and out.”

Humans beyond counting his INFINITY: “surrounding the throne I saw twenty-four other thrones on which twenty-four elders sat,” probably symbolizing the 12 Tribes of Israel with all their descendants and the twelve Apostles with all the followers of their teaching.

Then here’s our challenge.  As we journey through this day observe the reflection of God’s divine attributes in our universe; the things of beauty, the words of wisdom, the infinite variety of creation, the incredible forces of nature and the permanence of the sun, moon and stars. Then notice how the 150th Responsorial Psalm picks up the theme.  Let it be our reaction and our prayer day after day.

    “Praise the Lord in his sanctuary,
     Praise him in the firmament of his strength.
    Praise him for his mighty deeds,
    Praise him for his majesty.”
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