Monday, September 8, 2014



July 26, 2010 at 1:05pm
Matt 24:1-4 1Jesus left the temple and was walking away when his disciples came up to him to call his attention to its buildings. 2”Do you see all these things?” he asked. “I tell you the truth, not one stone here will be left on another; every one will be thrown down.” [Jesus tells His disciples that the temple will be destroyed in “this generation.” This took place in 70 A.D.]

The Disciples ask Jesus 3 questions in Matthew:
1. Mt 24.3 “when will this happen, and Mk 13.4 …Tell us, when shall these things be…? Lk 21.7…Teacher, when therefore shall these things be?
2. Mt. 24.3 what will be the sign of your coming and Mk 13.4 . . . and what shall be the sign when these things are all about to be accomplished? Lk 21.7…and what shall be the sign when these things are about to come to pass?
3. Mt. 24.3 of the end of the age?”
Matt 24:4 And Jesus answered and said unto them (the disciples, not us,) Take heed that no man lead you astray...

The reason for the destruction of Jerusalem is firstly because of the prophets, wise men and teachers that had been sent by God to his people and killed and persecuted by them. In Lk 11:51 Jesus says “Yes, I tell you, this generation will be held responsible for it all”  The second reason was because of the Jews of that generation. The Jews…

... did not recognize the time of their visitation. Luke 19.42 ... called Jesus a bastard: John 8.41 ... said Jesus was possessed by demons and Satan. They said His power was from Satan. Jn 10.20, Lk 11.15 ... several times plotted to kill Jesus. Matt 12.14, 26.4, Mark 3.6... said they have no king but Caesar. John 19.15 ... asked for a murderer instead of Jesus. Matt 27.20 ... rejected Jesus. John 1.11 ... demanded that Jesus be crucified as they cried out, “Crucify Him!” Matt 27.23-24 ... crucified Jesus. They killed the Son of God. Acts 2.36, 4.10 ... shed innocent blood. Matt 27.24 ... called down a generational curse, “Let his blood be on us and our children” Matt 27.25 *AND GOD GAVE THEM THE AMEN.

The 3 Synoptic Gospels record the Olivet Discourse. John records it, too, in the Book of Revelation
Matthew 24 Mark 13 Luke 21 Revelation 6
Wars 6 7 9 1-2
International strife 7a 7 9 3-4
Famines 7b 8c 11b 5-6
Earthquakes 7c 8b 11a 12-17
Persecutions 9-13 9-13 12-19 9-11
De-creation 15-31 14-27 20-27 12-17
[The Great Tribulation by David Chilton, p65-66, Dominion Press 1987]

The reason so many Christians have a problem allowing “this generation” to mean Jesus’ own generation is that most modern ears are unfamiliar with the language Jesus uses in verses 4-33. How, they ask, could such events have been fulfilled between A.D. 30 and 70? That is a legitimate question. In order to answer it, we must examine closely what Jesus says in Matt 24:4-35.

In verses 4-33, Jesus lists several signs associated with a period of severe tribulation. Notice that all of these signs occurred in the years leading up to the destruction of Jerusalem. There is nothing in these verses that did not happen between A.D. 30 and 70 and thus had to await later fulfillment in a future “Great Tribulation.”
1. False Christs 24.4-5 Scripture and history testify that there were many who arose in the forty years following Jesus’ death who were false christs see, e.g., 1 John 2.18 18Dear children, this is the last hour; and as you have heard that the antichrist is coming, even now many antichrists have come. This is how we know it is the last hour.

2. Wars and Rumors of Wars 24:6 Between A.D. 14 and 68 there were wars in Germany, Africa, Thrace, Gaul, Britain, Armenia and elsewhere.

3. Famines 24:7. There were many famines between A.D. 30 and 70 Acts 11:27-29; Rom 15:25-28; 1 Cor. 16:1-5. The siege of Jerusalem resulted in a famine so severe that thousands died.

4. Earthquakes 24:7 History and Scripture record numerous earthquakes during this forty-year period see, e.g., Acts 16:28. Among them were quakes in Crete, Smyrna, Miletus, Chios, Samos, Laodicea, Hierapolis, Colosse, Campania, Rome, Judea, and Pompeii.

5. Signs in the Heavens Luke 21:11. “Signs from heaven” may be figurative language see comments on v.29, below, but even if it is literal, it was fulfilled. There was a comet in A.D. 60 during Nero’s reign. Halley’s Comet appeared in A.D. 66.

6. Tribulation and Persecution 24:9. The church lived through tremendous tribulation and persecution between A.D. 30 and 70. Peter and John were jailed Acts 4:3. They were later flogged 5:40. Stephen was stoned to death 7:54-60. Persecution increased 8:1, 9:1. James was martyred 12.1-2. Paul was stoned almost to death 14.19. Both the Jews and the Romans ruthlessly persecuted Christians.

7. Apostasy 24:10. The Bible indicates that apostasy from the faith was widespread before A.D. 70 Galatians, Colossians, 2 Tim1:15, 4:10, 16.

8. False Prophets 24.11. There were many false prophets prior to A.D. 70 according to
Scripture Acts 20.29-30; 2 Cor. 11.13; 2 Tim. 2.16-18; 2 Pet 2.1-3; 1 John 4.1; 2 John 7.

9. Lawlessness 24.12. Scripture indicates a rise in lawless behavior at this time 1 Cor. 5.1-2; 2 Tim 3.9. Caligula and Nero are just two prominent examples of lawless leaders.

10. The Gospel Preached to the Whole World 24.14. In verse 14, Jesus says that the Gospel will be preached in the whole world. Was that fulfilled prior to A.D. 70? Scripture says yes. In Colossians 1:23 Paul says that the Gospel “was proclaimed in all creation under heaven” Romans 10:18 18But I ask: Did they not hear? Of course they did: “Their voice has gone out into all the earth, their words to the ends of the world.”
Colossians 1:5-6 …the Gospel, that has come to you. All over the world this gospel is bearing fruit and growing, just as it has been doing among you since the day you heard it and understood God’s grace in all its truth.. By the time Paul wrote Colossians around A.D. 60, he could say that the Gospel had been proclaimed in all creation. Jesus’ prophecy was fulfilled. {The Greek word for “world” used in Matt 24.14 is oikomene, not cosmos. It means, “the known world” or “Roman world,” like in Luke 2.1 1In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. Was the Roman census taken in North America? Of course not. Rom 1:8 First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for all of you, because your faith is being reported all over the world.}

11. The Abomination of Desolation 24.15. A comparison of this passage with its parallel in Luke 21.20 reveals that the Abomination of Desolation consisted of the Roman armies’ surrounding Jerusalem. {Luke 21 20”When you see Jerusalem being surrounded by armies, you will know that its desolation is near.}

12. A Flight of Christians from the Siege 24.16-20. History records that during an unexpected and temporary Roman withdrawal from the siege on Jerusalem, most Christians fled the city. Many fled to the rock fortress of Pella about sixty miles northeast of Jerusalem.

13. Great Tribulation 24.21. {Matthew 24:21 “For then there will be great distress, unequaled from the beginning of the world until now—and never to be equaled again.”} The language Jesus uses here echoes references to horrible judgments throughout the Old Testament see Ex. 11.16; Dan 9.12, 12.1; Joel 2.2. For example, speaking of the destruction of Jerusalem by Babylon in 586 B.C., Ezekiel prophesied, “And because of all your abominations, I will do among you what I have not done, and the like of which I will never do again” Ezek. 5.9. The language of Matthew 24.21, therefore, cannot refer to a one-of-a-kind, final judgment. It is common Old Testament judgment language. {Exodus 11:6 There will be loud wailing throughout Egypt—worse than there has ever been or ever will be again.
Daniel 9:12 You have fulfilled the words spoken against us and against our rulers by bringing upon us great disaster. Under the whole heaven nothing has ever been done like what has been done to Jerusalem.
Daniel 12:1 1 “At that time Michael, the great prince who protects your people, will arise. There will be a time of distress such as has not happened from the beginning of nations until then. But at that time your people—everyone whose name is found written in the book—will be delivered.
Joel 2:2 2 a day of darkness and gloom, a day of clouds and blackness. Like dawn spreading across the mountains a large and mighty army comes, such as never was of old nor ever will be in ages to come.

14. False Reports of Christ’s coming 24.23-26. Jesus corrects the initial misunderstanding behind the disciples’ questions by telling them that when the judgment on Jerusalem begins, He will not be coming back visibly.  {Isaiah 19:1 An oracle concerning Egypt: See, the LORD rides on a swift cloud and is coming to Egypt. The idols of Egypt tremble before him, and the hearts of the Egyptians melt within them;
Gen. 11:5, 7 “And the LORD came down to see the city and the tower which the sons of men had built. . . . Come, let Us go down and there confuse their language, that they may not understand one another’s speech
Genesis 18:20 ” And the LORD said, Because the cry of Sodom and Gomorrah is great, and because their sin is very grievous; 21 I will go down now, and see whether they have done altogether according to the cry of it, which is COME unto me; and if not, I will know. “
Exodus 3:8 “So I have come down to deliver them from the power of the Egyptians, and to bring them up from that land to a good and spacious land, to a land flowing with milk and honey. .
Deuteronomy 33:2 " And he said, The LORD came from Sinai, and rose up from Seir unto them; he shined forth from mount Paran, and he came with ten thousands of saints: from his right hand went a fiery law for them. "
Psalm 18:7 “ Then the earth shook and trembled; the foundations also of the hills moved and were shaken, because he was wroth. 8 There went up a smoke out of his nostrils, and fire out of his mouth devoured: coals were kindled by it. 9 He bowed the heavens also, and came down: and darkness was under his feet. 10 And he rode upon a cherub, and did fly: yea, he did fly upon the wings of the wind. 11 He made darkness his secret place; his pavilion round about him were dark waters and thick CLOUDs of the skies. 12 At the brightness that was before him his thick CLOUDs passed, hail stones and coals of fire. 13 The LORD also thundered in the heavens, and the Highest gave his voice; hail stones and coals of fire. “
Psalm 97:5 " The hills melted like wax at the presence of the LORD, at the presence of the Lord of the whole earth. “
Psalm 50:3 " Our God shall COME, and shall not keep silence: a fire shall devour before him, and it shall be very tempestuous round about him."
Psalm 144:5 “Bow Thy heavens, O LORD, and come down; touch the mountains, that they may smoke”
II Samuel 22:7 " In my distress I called upon the LORD, and cried to my God: and he did hear my voice out of his temple, and my cry did enter into his ears. 8 Then the earth shook and trembled; the foundations of heaven moved and shook, because he was wroth. 9 There went up a smoke out of his nostrils, and fire out of his mouth devoured: coals were kindled by it. 10 He bowed the heavens also, and came down; and darkness was under his feet. 11 And he rode upon a cherub, and did fly: and he was seen upon the wings of the wind. “
Isaiah 31:4 This is what the LORD says to me: “As a lion growls, a great lion over his prey— and though a whole band of shepherds is called together against him, he is not frightened by their shouts or disturbed by their clamor— so the LORD Almighty will come down to do battle on Mount Zion and on its heights.
Isaiah 64:3 " When thou didst terrible things which we looked not for, thou camest down, the mountains flowed down at thy presence. "
Isaiah 66:15 " For, behold, the LORD will COME with fire, and with his chariots like a whirlwind, to render his anger with fury, and his rebuke with flames of fire. "
Neh. 9:13a “You came down on Mount Sinai; you spoke to them from heaven.
Isaiah 64:1 Oh, that you would rend the heavens and come down, that the mountains would tremble before you!
Isaiah 64:3 For when you did awesome things that we did not expect, you came down, and the mountains trembled before you.
Micah 1:3-5 Look! The LORD is coming from his dwelling place; he comes down and treads the high places of the earth. 4 The mountains melt beneath him and the valleys split apart, like wax before the fire, like water rushing down a slope. 5 All this is because of Jacob’s transgression, because of the sins of the house of Israel. What is Jacob’s transgression? Is it not Samaria? What is Judah’s high place? Is it not Jerusalem?
Rev 2:5 Remember the height from which you have fallen! Repent and do the things you did at first. If you do not repent, I will come to you and remove your lamp stand from its place.
Rev 2:16 Repent therefore! Otherwise, I will soon come to you and will fight against them with the sword of my mouth

15. Why the Reports Are False 24.27-28. Verses 27-28 are a parenthetical statement. Jesus is essentially saying this: “Look, during this soon-coming judgment many are going to say that I have returned. Don’t believe them. Because when I do return, there won’t be any doubt. Everyone will know it. [The destruction of Jerusalem My coming in judgment is a different event from My second coming.] Don’t expect me to come visibly during the judgment upon Jerusalem.” Jesus’ reference to the vultures in verse 28 refers to Jeremiah 7.33. Again He is using Old Testament judgment imagery.

16. The Sun, Moon, and Stars 24:29. The Old Testament often speaks of the darkening of the sun, moon, and stars in connection with judgment. Such language occurs many times in the prophets to refer to the historical judgment of nations. * In Genesis 1:14-19 God gave the heavenly lights to mark the seasons and govern the day and night. In Gen 37:9-11 Joseph dreams of the sun, moon and stars bowing down before him. This represents his family, the nation of Israel. In Biblical times and Today, the sun, moon and stars are symbolic of nations, i.e., The USA flag has 50 stars; Japan has a sun; and Muslim flags have a moon and star.

Isaiah 13.10judgment on Babylon 539 B.C.
Isaiah 34.4judgment on Edom 703 B.C.
Ezekiel 32.7judgment on Egypt 568 B.C.
Joel 2.10 judgment on Judah 586 B.C.

{Isaiah 13:9-13 9 See, the day of the LORD is coming —a cruel day, with wrath and fierce anger— to make the land desolate and destroy the sinners within it. 10 The stars of heaven and their constellations will not show their light. The rising sun will be darkened and the moon will not give its light. 11 I will punish the world for its evil, the wicked for their sins. I will put an end to the arrogance of the haughty and will humble the pride of the ruthless. 12 I will make man scarcer than pure gold, more rare than the gold of Ophir. 13 Therefore I will make the heavens tremble; and the earth will shake from its place at the wrath of the LORD Almighty, in the day of his burning anger.

Isaiah 34:4 3 Their slain will be thrown out their dead bodies will send up a stench; the mountains will be soaked with their blood. 4 All the stars of the heavens will be dissolved and the sky rolled up like a scroll; all the starry host will fall like withered leaves from the vine, like shriveled figs from the fig tree. 5 My sword has drunk its fill in the heavens; see, it descends in judgment on Edom, the people I have totally destroyed. 6 The sword of the LORD is bathed in blood, it is covered with fat— the blood of lambs and goats, fat from the kidneys of rams. For the LORD has a sacrifice in Bozrah and a great slaughter in Edom.

Ezekiel 32:5-8 5 I will spread your flesh on the mountains and fill the valleys with your remains. 6 I will drench the land with your flowing blood all the way to the mountains, and the ravines will be filled with your flesh. 7 When I snuff you out, I will cover the heavens and darken their stars; I will cover the sun with a cloud, and the moon will not give its light. 8 All the shining lights in the heavens I will darken over you; I will bring darkness over your land, declares the Sovereign LORD.

Joel 2:10-11 10 Before them the earth shakes, the sky trembles, the sun and moon are darkened, and the stars no longer shine. 11 The LORD thunders at the head of his army; his forces are beyond number, and mighty are those who obey his command. The day of the LORD is great; it is dreadful. Who can endure it?

17. The Son of Man 24.30. In verse 30, Jesus refers to Daniel 7.13-14, which is a vision of the ascension of Christ and His seating at the right hand of the Father see also Matt.26.64. {Notice which direction the son of man is going in Daniel 7:13-14 13 “In my vision at night I looked, and there before me was one like a son of man, coming with the clouds of heaven. He approached the Ancient of Days and was led into his presence. 14 He was given authority, glory and sovereign power; all peoples, nations and men of every language worshiped him. His dominion is an everlasting dominion that will not pass away, and his kingdom is one that will never be destroyed.
Matt 26.64 64”Yes, it is as you say,” Jesus replied. “But I say to all of you: In the future you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of the Mighty One and coming on the clouds of heaven.”}

18. The Gathering of the Elect 24.31. The word translated angels (aggelos) may also mean “messengers,” depending on the context. In Matthew 11.10, John the Baptist is referred to as an aggelos. The elect are gathered from the four corners of the earth through the preaching of the Gospel by Christ’s messengers John 11.51-52; Rev. 7.9

19. The Fig Tree 24.32-33. The sign of the fig tree is not the restoration of national Israel in 1948. That is evident when verse 32 is compared to its parallel, Luke 21.29. Luke says “the fig tree and all the trees.” The point is that the people to whom Jesus is speaking will know that the judgment is coming very soon when these signs begin to be fulfilled.
The Time Text 24.34-35. Verse 34 promises that all of these things will happen to the generation of Jews to whom He is speaking. In verse 35, He guarantees the prophecy by offering the emphatic assurance, “My words shall not pass away.” [Dispensationalism, Rightly Dividing the People of God? Appendix B, p138-144, by Keith A. Mathison, P&R Pub 1195] {my additions}

{Matt 24:34 I tell you the truth, THIS GENERATION will certainly not pass away until all these things have happened.}

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