The Multitude from Every Nation
After this I looked, and there was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, robed in white, with palm branches in their hands. They cried out in a loud voice, saying, ‘Salvation belongs to our God who is seated on the throne, and to the Lamb!’
Reflection by Duke Yaguchi
This scripture speaks of people believing in the same God. They have a common belief that God will save them. God will conquer their enemies and bring them salvation.
And what if all of these tribes and peoples are enemies of each other? And what if they have different names for their gods? Is one God stronger than another? Or can it be that there is one God with many names? If we all share the same God, how can everyone be saved?
If everyone picks up palm branches as a sign of peace, then no one can hold weapons of war. And if everyone cries out loud that salvation belongs to God, then no one can yell that salvation belongs to them alone.
There is so much violence in the world. I think more so today than in yesteryear, because we have invented more violent methods and weapons are more prevalent today. We are seeing that people believe arming schools and churches will be the solution. Yet this is against what the Bible espouses.
In the face of growing violence, how can palm branches bring peace?
Dear God. Please continue to speak to all of humanity, even if it is quietly to one individual at a time. Help me to carry a palm branch that can help fan the serenity of peace. In God's names I pray. Amen.