WHEN YOU SEE/ HEAR, The day and the hour, THIEF, stay awake, WATCH
by Tuese Ahkiong
W.H.O.INTERPRETS THE BIBLE
W ords of the text, in context. All words have meaning. God’s words communicate God’s thoughts to us! Genre-The type of literature. Accordingly particular rules of interpretation will apply to each kind of writing; Historical Narrative, poetry and wisdom, or prophetic writings.
Historic setting. The time of the writing, the writer and his purpose, and those to whom the message was addressed must be considered! *Audience relevance is so important because the Bible was NOT written “to” us in 21st century but “for” us. Many readers are very egotistic in that they constantly read themselves into the text.
O ther Bible Texts. The Bible has unity of doctrine. We must compare Scripture with Scripture to seethe whole picture (This is known as the analogy of faith put forth and taught by The Protestant Reformers.).
Here’s a great acronym for interpreting Scripture: HAT HAT
A udience Relevance
T ime Statements
A pocalyptic Language
In the following passages, Christ is speaking to His disciples about events that they would see in their lifetime, their generation (this generation-1st century). Remember, the “YOU” in these passages are not YOU who is reading my article in the 21st century, LOL, but “YOU,” the disciples. The disciples are the antecedent of the pronoun “YOU” in these passages.
1. Matthew 24:15 “So [WHEN YOU SEE] the abomination of desolation spoken of by the prophet Daniel, standing in the holy place (let the reader understand),
2. Matthew 24:33 So also, [WHEN YOU SEE] all these things, YOU know that he is near, at the very gates.
3. Mark 13:7 And [WHEN YOU HEAR] of wars and rumors of wars, do not be alarmed. This must take place, but the end is not yet.
4. Mark 13:14 “But [WHEN YOU SEE] the abomination of desolation standing where he ought not to be (let the reader understand), then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains.
5. Mark 13:29 So also, [WHEN YOU SEE] these things taking place, YOU know that he is near, at the very gates.
6. Luke 21:9 And [WHEN YOU HEAR] of wars and tumults, do not be terrified, for these things must first take place, but the end will not be at once.”
7. Luke 21:20 “But [WHEN YOU SEE] Jerusalem surrounded by armies, then know that its desolation has come near.
8. Luke 21:31 So also, [WHEN YOU SEE] these things taking place, YOU know that the kingdom of God is near.
The 1st century saints were NOT in darkness that the day of THE LORD would surprise them. They were aware of Christ’s thief coming.
1 Thessalonians 5:1-4
Now concerning the times and the seasons, brothers, YOU have no need to have anything written to YOU. 2 FOR YOU YOURSELVES ARE FULLY AWARE THAT THE DAY OF THE LORD WILL COME LIKE A THIEF in the night.3 While people are saying, “There is peace and security,” then sudden destruction will come upon them as labor pains come upon a pregnant woman, and they will not escape. 4 BUT YOU ARE NOT IN DARKNESS, BROTHERS, FOR THAT DAY TO SURPRISE YOU LIKE A THIEF.
***Non-believers were in darkness and were surprised by the day of The Lord with sudden destruction in 70 A.D.
33 So also, [WHEN YOU SEE] ALL THESE THINGS, YOU know that HE IS NEAR, AT THE VERY GATES. 34 TRULY, I SAY TO YOU, THIS GENERATION WILL NOT PASS AWAY UNTIL ALL THESE THINGS TAKE PLACE. 35 Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away.
36 “BUT CONCERNING THAT DAY AND HOUR NO ONE KNOWS, not even the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but the Father only.
***The 1st century saints were told by Yeshua that ALL THESE THINGS verses 1-32 would occur in their generation: destruction of The Temple, Coming of The Lord, End of the age, false christs, rumors of war, natural disasters, persecution, falling away (apostasy), false prophets, lawlessness, The Gospel proclaimed to the world, they would see Daniel’s abomination of desolation standing where it shouldn’t be and should head for the hills and not into the temple, The Great Tribulation, sun darkened, moon not giving its light, stars falling, heavens shaken, the coming of The Son of Man.
Christ in His humanity did not know the day or the hour of His coming but He and the disciples knew the generation, their “this generation.”
**The following is Mark 13:29-37 accounting of Matthew 24:33-36
29 So also, [WHEN YOU SEE] these things taking place, YOU know that he is near, at the very gates.30 TRULY, I SAY TO YOU, THIS GENERATION WILL NOT PASS AWAY UNTIL ALL THESE THINGS TAKE PLACE. 31 Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away.
32 “BUT CONCERNING THAT DAY OR THAT HOUR, NO ONE KNOWS, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father. 33 BE ON GUARD, KEEP AWAKE. FOR YOU DO NOT KNOW WHEN THE TIME WILL COME. 34 It is like a man going on a journey, when he leaves home and puts his servants in charge, each with his work, and commands the doorkeeper to STAY AWAKE. 35 Therefore STAY AWAKE—FOR YOU DO NOT KNOW WHEN THE MASTER OF THE HOUSE WILL COME, IN THE EVENING, OR AT MIDNIGHT, OR WHEN THE ROOSTER CROWS, OR IN THE MORNING— 36 LEST HE COME SUDDENLY AND FIND YOU ASLEEP. 37 And what I say to YOU I say to all: STAY AWAKE.”
***The following is Luke 21:31-36 accounting of Matthew 24:33-36
31 So also, [WHEN YOU SEE] THESE THINGS TAKING PLACE, YOU KNOW THAT THE KINGDOM OF GOD IS NEAR. 32 TRULY, I SAY TO YOU, THIS GENERATION WILL NOT PASS AWAY UNTIL ALL HAS TAKEN PLACE. 33 Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away.
34 “But WATCH YOUrselves lest YOUr hearts be weighed down with dissipation and drunkenness and cares of this life, AND THAT DAY COME UPON YOU SUDDENLY like a trap. 35 For it will come upon all who dwell on the face of the whole earth. 36 But STAY AWAKE at all times, praying that YOU may have strength to escape ALL THESE THINGS THAT ARE GOING TO TAKE PLACE, AND TO STAND BEFORE THE SON OF MAN.”
***Christ commands His disciples to WATCH, STAY AWAKE. WATCH for what? The signs that Christ gave them. STAY AWAKE for what? STAYING AWAKE in preparation for their escape.
42 THEREFORE, STAY AWAKE, FOR YOU DO NOT KNOW ON WHAT DAY YOUR LORD IS COMING. 43 But know this, that if the master of the house had known in what part of the night the thief was coming, he would have stayed awake and would not have let his house be broken into. 44 THEREFORE YOU ALSO MUST BE READY, FOR THE SON OF MAN IS COMING AT AN HOUR YOU DO NOT EXPECT.
45 “Who then is the faithful and wise servant, whom his master has set over his household, to give them their food at the proper time? 46 BLESSED IS THAT SERVANT WHOM HIS MASTER WILL FIND SO DOING WHEN HE COMES. 47 Truly, I say to YOU, he will set him over all his possessions. 48 But if that wicked servant says to himself, ‘My master is delayed,’ 49 and begins to beat his fellow servants and eats and drinks with drunkards, 50 THE MASTER OF THAT SERVANT WILL COME ON A DAY WHEN HE DOES NOT EXPECT HIM AND AT AN HOUR HE DOES NOT KNOW 51 and will cut him in pieces and put him with the hypocrites. In that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
***The saints were admonished to stay awake in the sense of being able to watch for the signs of Christ’s coming.
35 “STAY DRESSED FOR ACTION AND KEEP YOUR LAMPS BURNING, 36 AND BE LIKE MEN WHO ARE WAITING FOR THEIR MASTER TO COME home from the wedding feast, so that they may open the door to him at once when he come and knocks. 37 Blessed are those servants whom the master FINDS AWAKE WHEN HE COMES. Truly, I say to YOU, he will dress himself for service and have them recline at table, and he will come and serve them. 38 If he comes in the second watch, or in the third, and FINDS THEM AWAKE, BLESSED ARE THOSE SERVANTS! 39 But know this, that if the master of the house had known at what hour the THIEF was coming, he would not have left his house to be broken into. 40 YOU ALSO MUST BE READY, FOR THE SON OF MAN IS COMING AT AN HOUR YOU DO NOT EXPECT.”
***Again, the disciples are to STAY AWAKE spiritually by being aware of imminent events.
11 Afterward the other virgins came also, saying, ‘Lord, lord, open to us.’ 12 But he answered, ‘Truly, I say to YOU, I do not know YOU.’ 13 WATCH THEREFORE, FOR YOU KNOW NEITHER THE DAY NOR THE HOUR
***Verses 1-12 is the parable of the 10 virgins that Yeshua is telling to His disciples about being prepared. In v13, after giving the parable, Yeshua commands His disciples to WATCH.
Again, they are to watch for the signs and be prepared.
BUT THE DAY OF THE LORD WILL COME LIKE A THIEF, and then the heavens will pass away with a roar, and the heavenly bodies will be burned up and dissolved, and the earth and the works that are done on it will be EXPOSED.
***Peter is describing Christ’s coming in the 1st century, “this generation” to execute judgment upon Jerusalem, remove the heavens and earth of old covenant Israel.
“And to the angel of the church in Sardis write: ‘The words of him who has the seven spirits of God and the seven stars.
“‘I know your works. YOU have the reputation of being alive, but YOU are dead. 2 Wake up, and strengthen what remains and is about to die, for I have not found your works complete in the sight of my God. 3Remember, then, what YOU received and heard. Keep it, and repent. If YOU will not wake up, I WILL COME LIKE A THIEF, and YOU WILL NOT KNOW AT WHAT HOUR I will come against YOU.
***Christ is threatening to come in judgment against the Sardis church. Well, that was a church that existed in the 1st century. It is no longer here.
(“BEHOLD, I AM COMING LIKE A THIEF! Blessed is the one who STAYS AWAKE, keeping his garments on, that he may not go about naked and be seen EXPOSED!”)
***Christ again speaks of His coming in the first century and tells the saints to STAY AWAKE, be prepared.
WHEN YOU SEE/ HEAR, The day and the hour, THIEF, stay awake, WATCH
When YOU (the disciples in the 1st century) see/ hear the signs given by Yeshua. Matt 24:1-32
They did not know the exact day or hour but they knew the generation, their generation; “this generation.”
The saints were aware of Christ’s thief coming. The aints or non-believers were not.
Stay Awake, WATCH was the admonition to be diligent in being prepared and watching the signs that Christ said would take place in their generation.