Mark 13:30

I tell you that even the present generation will not pass away, until all these things have taken place.

this generation
this creation
age upon age

yesterday choices
enforced today
block new vision

slough caught
leg weary
while struggling on

tomorrow’s seed
grows unseen
of prior restraints

The phrase “all these things” again leads to a question of its limits. What will the generation of Jesus see?

Of greatest import is whether it will only see the disappointment of systems harming people as well as one person harming another. Will it also see the cosmological disasters? Or will it also see a Jesus-bearing cloud reversing all labor pains into new life?

To this point we still have wars and rumors of wars and increasing global responses to the rape of its resources for a questionable value of increased profits for a few.

Undoubtedly there are numbers of people who have glimpsed a moment of resolution, but, as undoubtedly, no one has experienced the end of travail for all of creation.

This assurance that has not been borne out raises for some a question: Was verse 27 the original end of the apocalyptically-styled section? If it was, we are now in a commentary section upon the sequence from suffering at the hands of humans (vss. 14–23), to death in the midst of creation falling apart (vss. 24–25), and then rising with the coming of a cloud of glory (vss. 26–27).

Such a commentary would see a reversal of human harm through the reversal of a curse upon a fig tree (vs. 28). It would show the end of stars and moons to be a gateway to a new creation (vs. 29). The cloud of glory would expect to be present in the present (vs. 30).

The last time we heard this sort of assurance (9:1) it led to a time of Transfiguration, a confirmation of belovedness. Readers alert to Mark’s repetitions might well wonder what will be coming from this assurance. In that previous time the mountain-top experience was immediately followed by holding it as a secret and immediately going back to work when an attempt at curing doesn’t lead to a positive resolution. Will that pattern follow an anti-Transfiguration?

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