February 4th Matthew 24
(The Prophesy of the King)
The Destruction of the Temple
1: And Jesus went out, and departed from the temple: and his disciples came to him for to shew him the buildings of the temple. 2: And Jesus said unto them, See ye not all these things? verily I say unto you, There shall not be left here one stone upon another, that shall not be thrown down.
The time of the end
3: And as he sat upon the mount of Olives, the disciples came unto him privately, saying, Tell us, when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world? 4: And Jesus answered and said unto them, Take heed that no man deceive you. 5: For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many. 6: And ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars: see that ye be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet. 7: For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places. 8: All these are the beginning of sorrows. 9: Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall kill you: and ye shall be hated of all nations for my name's sake. 10: And then shall many be offended, and shall betray one another, and shall hate one another. 11: And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many. 12: And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold. 13: But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved. 14: And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come.
The end comes
15: When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoso readeth, let him understand:) 16: Then let them which be in Judaea flee into the mountains: 17: Let him which is on the housetop not come down to take any thing out of his house: 18: Neither let him which is in the field return back to take his clothes. 19: And woe unto them that are with child, and to them that give suck in those days! 20: But pray ye that your flight be not in the winter, neither on the sabbath day: 21: For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be. 22: And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect's sake those days shall be shortened. 23: Then if any man shall say unto you, Lo, here is Christ, or there; believe it not. 24: For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect. 25: Behold, I have told you before. 26: Wherefore if they shall say unto you, Behold, he is in the desert; go not forth: behold, he is in the secret chambers; believe it not. 27: For as the lightning cometh out of the east, and shineth even unto the west; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be. 28: For wheresoever the carcase is, there will the eagles be gathered together.
In this passage we have one of the most remarkable prophecies in scripture. The Lord tells the excited disciples that the Temple will be destroyed and so they come back to him with two questions. The second question has two parts. Tell us, when shall these things be? And what shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world? The first thing Christ says is don’t be deceived. Because there will be many false Christ’s that will come and lead many astray. There will be local wars but don’t be troubled by these things this is not the end. These are just the beginning of sorrows. Christ is here speaking to the disciples as Apostles to Israel. He speaks of persecutions and hatred which they will experience in every nation that they take the Gospel of the Kingdom to. However the Apostles will be persecuted in every nation that they go to. Those who endure to the end of these times will be saved from its judgments. Christ says this gospel of the kingdom (Which they had preached) would be preached unto all nations. And only then will the end come. The end is the defilement of the Temple by the Antichrist who will set up an image of himself in the temple. This is the Abomination of desolations which Daniel spoke of. When they see this they are to flee to the mountains. Christ says, Pray that your flight be not in the winter or on a Sabbath day. Christ is speaking about the Jews of the Tribulation. Because there will break upon the world a great tribulation, so great that no flesh would survive. Christ then speaks about his coming in a way that can never be counterfeited. It will be like the sun shining from the east to the west. It will be a coming in great power and glory.
In this passage something imediately becomes apparent. Theres no Rapture! Christ is speaking to the Apostles who are the messengers of God to Israel. He speaks about the terrible days that they will live though which we have recorded in the Acts which will lead to the destruction of the temple. But then without a break the Lord speaks of the events of the last week of Daniels seventy weeks. The Tribulation. The Lord speaks as if there is no break in time. We now know looking back that an interegnum fell between these great events which has so far extended for 2000 years. It is the dispensation of the Grace of God - the times in which we now live.
- What is the context of this prophecy of Christ?
- What are the main events that Christ predicts?
- What does Christ mean by the end?