View Full Version : Matthew 24 - The Kingdom of Heaven/God
July 30th, 2007, 07:13 AM
1 Then Jesus went out and departed from the temple, and His disciples came up to show Him the buildings of the temple. 2 And Jesus said to them, “Do you not see all these things? Assuredly, I say to you, not one stone shall be left here upon another, that shall not be thrown down.”
3 Now as He sat on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to Him privately, saying, “Tell us, when will these things be? And what will be the sign of Your coming, and of the end of the age?”
4 And Jesus answered and said to them: “Take heed that no one deceives you. 5 For many will come in My name, saying, ‘I am the Christ,’ and will deceive many. 6 And you will hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not troubled; for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet. 7 For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. And there will be famines, pestilences, and earthquakes in various places. 8 All these are the beginning of sorrows.
9 “Then they will deliver you up to tribulation and kill you, and you will be hated by all nations for My name’s sake. 10 And then many will be offended, will betray one another, and will hate one another. 11 Then many false prophets will rise up and deceive many. 12 And because lawlessness will abound, the love of many will grow cold. 13 But he who endures to the end shall be saved. 14 And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in all the world as a witness to all the nations, and then the end will come.
Should we see the bold ABOVE verses as before the rapture or the Second Coming?
15 “Therefore when you see the ‘abomination of desolation,’[c] spoken of by Daniel the prophet, standing in the holy place” (whoever reads, let him understand), 16 “then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains. 17 Let him who is on the housetop not go down to take anything out of his house. 18 And let him who is in the field not go back to get his clothes. 19 But woe to those who are pregnant and to those who are nursing babies in those days! 20 And pray that your flight may not be in winter or on the Sabbath. 21 For then there will be great tribulation, such as has not been since the beginning of the world until this time, no, nor ever shall be. 22 And unless those days were shortened, no flesh would be saved; but for the elect’s sake those days will be shortened.
23 “Then if anyone says to you, ‘Look, here is the Christ!’ or ‘There!’ do not believe it. 24 For false christs and false prophets will rise and show great signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect. 25 See, I have told you beforehand.
26 “Therefore if they say to you, ‘Look, He is in the desert!’ do not go out; or ‘Look, He is in the inner rooms!’ do not believe it. 27 For as the lightning comes from the east and flashes to the west, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be. 28 For wherever the carcass is, there the eagles will be gathered together.
Is the bold verses above before the Rapture or the Second Coming?
29 “Immediately after the tribulation of those days the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light; the stars will fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken. 30 Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in heaven, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. 31 And He will send His angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they will gather together His elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.
Is the bold verses above before the Rapture or the Second Coming?
32 “Now learn this parable from the fig tree: When its branch has already become tender and puts forth leaves, you know that summer is near. 33 So you also, when you see all these things, know that it[d] is near—at the doors! 34 Assuredly, I say to you, this generation will by no means pass away till all these things take place. 35 Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will by no means pass away.
36 “But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven,[e] but My Father only. 37 But as the days of Noah were, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be. 38 For as in the days before the flood, they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark, 39 and did not know until the flood came and took them all away, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be. 40 Then two men will be in the field: one will be taken and the other left. 41 Two women will be grinding at the mill: one will be taken and the other left. 42 Watch therefore, for you do not know what hour[f] your Lord is coming. 43 But know this, that if the master of the house had known what hour the thief would come, he would have watched and not allowed his house to be broken into. 44 Therefore you also be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect.
Is the bold verses above before the Rapture or the Second Coming?
45 “Who then is a faithful and wise servant, whom his master made ruler over his household, to give them food in due season? 46 Blessed is that servant whom his master, when he comes, will find so doing. 47 Assuredly, I say to you that he will make him ruler over all his goods. 48 But if that evil servant says in his heart, ‘My master is delaying his coming,’ [g] 49 and begins to beat his fellow servants, and to eat and drink with the drunkards, 50 the master of that servant will come on a day when he is not looking for him and at an hour that he is not aware of, 51 and will cut him in two and appoint him his portion with the hypocrites. There shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
Just wanting to revisit this chapter. I have heard it explained many ways.
August 1st, 2007, 03:18 PM
Matthew 24:1, 2
Jesus left the temple and was walking away when his disciples came up to him to call his attention to its buildings. “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…”
Mark 13:1, 2
As he was leaving the temple, one of his disciples said to him, “Look, Teacher! What massive stones! What magnificent buildings!” “Do you see all these great buildings?" replied Jesus. “Not one stone here will be left on another; every one will be thrown down...”
Luke 21:5, 6
Some of his disciples were remarking about how the temple was adorned with beautiful stones and with gifts dedicated to God. But Jesus said, “As for what you see here, the time will come when not one stone will be left on another; every one of them will be thrown down...”
The disciples that came to Jesus privately and asked Jesus the aforementioned questions were Peter, James, John and Andrew - Mark 13:3
As they left the temple in Jerusalem (see Mt 23:37, 38), certain ones remarked about what a magnificent temple it was and how splendid were its stones. Nevertheless, Jesus said that the time would come when one stone would not be left upon another that would not be thrown down! This statement about the destruction of the temple aroused questions from the disciples. As they sat upon the Mount of Olives, they asked Jesus when these things would happen and what sign would be given when these things were about to be fulfilled.
August 1st, 2007, 03:23 PM
Matthew 24:4, 5
Jesus answered: “Watch out that no one deceives you. For many will come in my name, claiming, 'I am the Christ,[a]' and will deceive many…”
Mark 13:5, 6
Jesus said to them: “Watch out that no one deceives you. Many will come in my name, claiming, ‘I am he,’ and will deceive many…”
He replied: “Watch out that you are not deceived. For many will come in my name, claiming, ‘I am he,’ and, ‘The time is near.’ Do not follow them…”
In the very early chapters of the book of Acts, we are told of the religious imposters running rampant in Judea:
“Men of Israel, consider carefully what you intend to do to these men. Some time ago Theudas appeared, claiming to be somebody, and about four hundred men rallied to him. He was killed, all his followers were dispersed, and it all came to nothing. After him, Judas the Galilean appeared in the days of the census and led a band of people in revolt. He too was killed, and all his followers were scattered.” (Acts 5:36, 37)
In Acts chapter 8 a man named Simon Magus was being proclaimed as “the divine power known as the Great Power” (Acts 8:9, 10). Several of the early Christian writers refer to Simon Magus. Justin relates that, in the time of Claudius Caesar, Simon was worshipped as a god at Rome on account of his magical powers. Jerome quotes Simon Magus as saying “I am the Word of God, I am the Comforter, I am Almighty, I am all there is of God.” Irenaeus tells us how Simon claimed to be the Son of God and the creator of angels.
Early Church historian Eusebius says of this Simon:
“And after the ascension of the Lord into heaven the demons put forward certain men who said they were gods, and who were not only allowed by you to go unpersecuted, but were even deemed worthy of honors. One of them was Simon, a Samaritan of the village of Gitto, who in the reign of Claudius C'sar performed in your imperial city some mighty acts of magic by the art of demons operating in him, and was considered a god, and as a god was honored by you with a statue, which was erected in the river Tiber, between the two bridges, and bore this inscription in the Latin tongue, Simoni Deo Sancto, that is, To Simon the Holy God. And nearly all the Samaritans and a few even of other nations confess and worship him as the first God… We have understood that Simon was the author of all heresy. From his time down to the present those who have followed his heresy have reigned the sober philosophy of the Christians, which is celebrated among all on account of its purity of life. But they nevertheless have embraced again the superstitions of idols, which they seemed to have renounced; and they fall down before pictures and images of Simon himself and of the above-mentioned Helena who was with him; and they venture to worship them with incense and sacrifices and libations.”
Origen informs us of a Dositheus who claimed that he was the Christ foretold by Moses.
August 1st, 2007, 03:33 PM
Wars and Rumors of Wars
“Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom…”
Mark 13:7, 8
“When you hear of wars and rumors of wars, do not be alarmed. Such things must happen, but the end is still to come. Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom…”
Luke 21:9, 10
“When you hear of wars and revolutions, do not be frightened. These things must happen first, but the end will not come right away.” Then he said to them: "Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom…”
During the life and ministry of Jesus the Roman Empire lived in general peace all throughout its borders. This time of peace was called the Pax Romana or Roman Peace. However Jesus told his disciples that before the Temple would be destroyed this empire wide peace would come to an end.
The Annals of Tacitus, covering the period from A.D.14 to the death of Nero in A.D. 68, describes the tumult period with phrases such as “disturbances in Germany”, “commotions in Africa”, “commotions in Thrace”, “insurrections in Gaul”, “intrigues among the Parthians”, “the war in Britain”, and “the war in Armenia.” Wars were fought from one end of the empire to the other.
After the death of Nero in A.D. the Roman Empire experienced one civil war after another. Consider the words of Tacitus in his work History: “I am entering on the history of a period rich in disasters, frightful in its wars, torn by civil strife, and even in peace full of horrors. Four emperors perished by the sword. There were three civil wars; there were more foreign wars and often both at the same time. There was success in the East, and disaster in the West. There were disturbances in Illyricum; Gaul wavered in its allegiance; Britain was thoroughly subdued and immediately abandoned; the tribes of the Suevi and the Sarmatae rose in concert against us; the Dacians had the glory of inflicting as well as suffering defeat; the armies of Parthia were all but set in motion by the cheat of a counterfeit Nero.” Of these same events Josephus states:
“Now at the time when this great concussion of affairs happened, the affairs of the Romans were themselves in great disorder. Those Jews also who were for innovations, then arose when the times were disturbed; they were also in a flourishing condition for strength and riches, insomuch that the affairs of the East were then exceeding tumultuous, while some hoped for gain, and others were afraid of loss in such troubles; for the Jews hoped that all of their nation which were beyond Euphrates would have raised an insurrection together with them. The Gauls also, in the neighborhood of the Romans, were in motion, and the Geltin were not quiet; but all was in disorder after the death of Nero.” (Preface to the War of the Jews)
August 1st, 2007, 03:36 PM
Matthew 24:9, 10
“Then you will be handed over to be persecuted and put to death, and you will be hated by all nations because of me. At that time many will turn away from the faith and will betray and hate each other…”
Mark 13:9, 11-12
“You must be on your guard. You will be handed over to the local councils and flogged in the synagogues. On account of me you will stand before governors and kings as witnesses to them…Whenever you are arrested and brought to trial, do not worry beforehand about what to say. Just say whatever is given you at the time, for it is not you speaking, but the Holy Spirit. Brother will betray brother to death, and a father his child. Children will rebel against their parents and have them put to death…”
“But before all this, they will lay hands on you and persecute you. They will deliver you to synagogues and prisons, and you will be brought before kings and governors, and all on account of my name. This will result in your being witnesses to them. But make up your mind not to worry beforehand how you will defend yourselves. For I will give you words and wisdom that none of your adversaries will be able to resist or contradict. You will be betrayed even by parents, brothers, relatives and friends, and they will put some of you to death…”
The book of Acts from beginning to end is a recounting of the trials and persecution that the disciples and the church endured from the very beginning. In Acts chapter 4 Peter and John were arrested by the temple guard for teaching the people and proclaiming in Jesus the resurrection of the dead (Act 4:2). The next day they were brought before the rulers, elders, and teachers, which included Annas the high priest Caiaphas, John, Alexander, and the other men of the high priest's family (v6) and it became a platform for them to testify about Jesus, which they did. In Acts chapter 5 the high priest and all his associates, who were members of the party of the Sadducees, arrested the apostles, and put them in the public jail (v17, 18). They later had the apostles appear before the council where they were brought before the high priest and testified again (verse 27-33). Upon finishing their testimony before the council, the council had them flogged and “ordered them not to speak in the name of Jesus, and let them go” (v40). The apostles left the Sanhedrin, “rejoicing because they had been counted worthy of suffering disgrace for the Name” (v41).
In Acts chapters 6 and 7 Stephen, a man full of God's grace and power (Acts 6:8), was seized and brought before the Sanhedrin because members of the synagogue in which he preached secretly persuaded some to say, “We have heard Stephen speak words of blasphemy against Moses and against God” (v11). They even produced false witnesses, who testified against Stephen which ultimately led him to being stoned to death (Acts 7:59, 60). In Acts chapters 24, 25, and 26 the apostle Paul made an appearance before Roman governors Felix and Festus, King Agrippa and Queen Bernice as well as high ranking officers and the leading men of the city. Paul discourses to Felix on righteousness, self-control and the judgment to come caused him to become afraid (Acts 24:25).
Just as the apostles where experiencing personal persecution the church also began to be persecuted corporately. On the day that Stephen was martyred, “a great persecution broke out against the church at Jerusalem, and all except the apostles were scattered throughout Judea and Samaria…Those who had been scattered preached the word wherever they went” (Acts 8:1, 4).
In AD 64 three and a half years before the reign of Nero would finally come to an end with his suicide (he died in June A.D. 68), a great fire nearly destroyed the city of Rome of which it was suggested that Nero had started. In order to avert blame he used Christians as scapegoats and began an all out assault on the Church. According to Tacitus (c. 56 A.D.– c. 117A.D.),
“To suppress this rumor, Nero fabricated scapegoats and punished with every refinement the notoriously depraved Christians. Their originator, Christ, had been executed in the reign of Tiberius by the governor of Judea, Pontius Pilate, and a most mischievous superstition, thus checked for the moment, again broke out not only in Judaea, the first source of the evil, but even in Rome, where all things hideous and shameful from every part of the world find their center and become popular. First, Nero had self-acknowledged Christians arrested. Then, on their information, large numbers of other were condemned. Their deaths were made farcical. Dressed in wild animals’ skins, they were torn to pieces by dogs, or crucified, or made into torches to be ignited after dark as substitutes for daylight. Nero provided his Gardens for the spectacle, and exhibited displays in the Circus while he mingled with the people in the dress of a charioteer or stood aloft on a car.”
It was during Nero’s reign that Peter, Paul, and James lost their lives. This was obviously a time of great persecution for the church and the disciples. As you can clearly see these things came to pass in the years following the Olivet Discourse just as Jesus said they would and they were unmistakably fulfilled in every detail.
August 1st, 2007, 03:41 PM
Gospel to Be Preached to all Nations
“And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come.”
“And the gospel must first be preached to all nations.”
Now as to Jesus’ statement that the gospel would be preached to all nations; this too was accomplished. Matthew uses the Greek word oikoumene that means “inhabited earth.” The same word is used in Luke 2:1 and Acts 11:28. Literally translated it would mean the Roman world or empire. Therefore, Jesus was saying that the gospel would be preached throughout the Roman World as a witness and then the end would come. The fact that the gospel was preached throughout the world in the timeframe after the Olivet Discourse is backed up in scripture.
In Acts 17 when Paul and Silas are in Thessalonica visiting Jason, the Jews rounded up some bad characters from the marketplace, formed a mob and started a riot in the city. They rushed to Jason's house in search of Paul and Silas in order to bring them out to the crowd. When they did not find them, they dragged Jason and some other brothers before the city officials, shouting:
“These men who have caused trouble all over the world have now come here, and Jason has welcomed them into his house. They are all defying Caesar's decrees, saying that there is another king, one called Jesus.” (Acts 17:5-7 emphasis added)
Paul in his letter to the Christians in Colosse says that the gospel was “bearing fruit all over the world” (Colossians 1: 6). In verse 23 of the same chapter, Paul encourages the Colossians to “continue in your faith, established and firm, not moved from the hope held out in the gospel. This is the gospel that you heard and that has been proclaimed to every creature under heaven, and of which I, Paul, have become a servant” (emphasis added). In Paul’s letter to the Christians in Rome he informs the church there that their “faith is being reported all over the world” (Romans 1:8). It seems to me that by Paul’s day the gospel, just as Jesus said it would, was preached throughout the oikoumene is confirmed and backed up by Paul’s own words.
August 1st, 2007, 03:45 PM
Famines and Earthquakes
“There will be famines and earthquakes in various places…”
“There will be earthquakes in various places, and famines…”
“There will be great earthquakes, famines and pestilences in various places…”
The book of Acts records for us that Agabus, a New Testament prophet, prophesied that in the days of Claudius Caesar there would be a severe famine that would spread throughout the whole Roman Empire. First century historians Tacitus and Josephus confirm this. Of this period, Tacitus says that there were “scanty crops” which led to a “consequent famine.” Josephus (c. 37 A.D.– c. 100 A.D.) says that during the reign of Claudius famine “did oppress them at that time, and many people died for want of what was necessary to procure food withal.” Eusebius (c. 275 A.D.– c. 339 A.D.) also mentions this famine in his work Ecclesiastical History. Regarding this famine Eusebius says:
Under him the world was visited with a famine, which writers that are entire strangers to our religion have recorded in their histories. And thus the prediction of Agabus recorded in the Acts of the Apostles, according to which the whole world was to be visited by a famine, received its fulfillment. And Luke, in the Acts, after mentioning the famine in the time of Claudius, and stating that the brethren of Antioch, each according to his ability, sent to the brethren of Judea by the hands of Paul and Barnabas, adds the following account.
During the siege of Jerusalem, the warring zealot factions destroyed a vast quantity of corn that led to a devastating famine (Wars 5:1:4). The effects of the famine during the siege were so disastrous that Josephus states that some “shut themselves up in the inmost rooms of their houses, and ate the corn they had gotten; some did it without grinding it, by reason of the extremity of the want they were in, and others baked bread of it, according as necessity and fear dictated to them: a table was no where laid for a distinct meal, but they snatched the bread out of the fire, half-baked, and ate it very hastily” (Wars 5:10:2). They did this to escape the madness of the zealots that, ravaged by the famine, would burst into people’s homes tormenting them in search of food.
During the reign of Nero there was a plague that killed 30,000 people in Rome. Here is how Tacitus describes the pestilence that affected the city:
"A year of shame and of so many evil deeds heaven also marked by storms and pestilence. Campania was devastated by a hurricane, which destroyed everywhere countryhouses, plantations and crops, and carried its fury to the neighbourhood of Rome, where a terrible plague was sweeping away all classes of human beings without any such derangement of the atmosphere as to be visibly apparent. Yet the houses were filled with lifeless forms and the streets with funerals. Neither age nor sex was exempt from peril. Slaves and the free-born populace alike were suddenly cut off, amid the wailings of wives and children, who were often consumed on the very funeral pyre of their friends by whom they had been sitting and shedding tears. Knights and senators perished indiscriminately, and yet their deaths were less deplored because they seemed to forestal the emperor's [Note 1] cruelty by an ordinary death."
Just as there was famine all over the Roman Empire so too were there earthquakes all over the Empire as well. There were earthquakes in Crete, Smyrna, Miletus, Chios, Samos, Laodecia, Hierapolis, Colosse, Campania, Rome and Judea. It is interesting to note that the city of Pompeii was much damaged by an earthquake occurring on February 5, 63 A.D. Tacitus says that in Rome during the reign of Claudius “houses were thrown down by frequent shocks of earthquake.” There are two earthquakes that are mentioned in Matthew after the Olivet Discourse was given and Luke records in Acts that “a great earthquake” occurred during the ministry of the apostles.
When the centurion and those with him who were guarding Jesus saw the earthquake and all that had happened, they were terrified, and exclaimed, “Surely he was the Son[a] of God!” (Mt 27:54)
There was a violent earthquake, for an angel of the Lord came down from heaven and, going to the tomb, rolled back the stone and sat on it. (Mt 28:2)
Suddenly there was such a violent earthquake that the foundations of the prison were shaken. At once all the prison doors flew open, and everybody's chains came loose. (Acts 16:26)
That is three earthquakes in close proximity to each other and two of them are being described as being severe and violent. Notice that they occurred not too long after Jesus gave the Olivet Discourse.
The principal earthquakes occurring between this prophecy and the destruction of Jerusalem [in A.D. 70] were, (1) a great earthquake in Crete, A.D. 46 or 47; (2) on at Rome when Nero assumed the manly toga, A.D. 51; (3) one at Apamaea in Phrygia, mentioned by Tacitus, A.D. 53; (4) one at Laodecia in Phrygia, A.D. 60; (5) one in Campania. Seneca in the year A.D. 58 writes:- “How often have cities of Asia and Achaea fallen with on fatal shock! How many cities have been swallowed up in Syria, how many in Macedonia! How often has Cyprus been wasted by this calamity! How often has Paphos become a ruin! News has often brought us of the demolition of whole cites at once. Notice the tight geographical area of these earthquakes within a period of just 12 years.
September 7th, 2007, 08:57 PM
There was an interesting discussion beginning on another thread. It was suggested by the moderator if Matthew 24 was to be discussed a new thread should be started.
When reading Matthew 24 what is discovered is a sermon given by the Lord containning three main topics it appears, not in chronological order, though the events in each topic described by the Lord are in chronological order.
The disciples have asked Jesus a question,
"Tell us, when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world?"
Jesus gives them a general discription of the indicators beginning to end...then goes into the crux of His sermon.
First addressed by Jesus is the great tribulation...vs. 15-28. Then He moves to the return of the Lord at the end of the tribulation vs. 29-31. Third mentioned, but the first event chronologically, a foreshadowing of the Rapture of the Church vs. 32-36.
So the gentleman who sees the Rapture in those verses I think is correct. There are several things that would be explained that otherwise cannot be...seen any other way.
for example this verse,
"For as in the days that were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noe entered into the ark" v. 38
I had always had problems reconsiling that verse with the tribulation...21 judgments will leave the word in choas and destruction. Every facuet of life will be interrupted with destruciton and death. The whole world will be on the brink of utter destruction. Soooo that passage has to refer to something else. When I began to question that, is when I began to see the divisions...or topics the Lord was describing.
The other piece is to whom it was written. Jesus was speaking to a group of Jews who were saved and would soon become the foundation for the church...so the logical conclusion is that He was speaking to all of us.
Would be interested in reading a discussion of this topic, Matthew 24 also known as the Olivet Discourse...Thanks
October 20th, 2007, 03:48 PM
Who wrote the book of Matthew?
Who was this chapter written to?
When was the book(chapter) written?
What do you personally get from this chapter?
I think, that this could be a great blessing and I want to allow those who are more seasoned members of this board to go first. This does not mean the newbies cannot join.No, this is meant for all even the moderators! May we share what the Lord has personal shown us and those who know the greek can enrich our study too.
October 20th, 2007, 09:26 PM
Well I am NOT one of the seasoned :) BUT you did invite the noobies also ... So I will take a stab at it. Matthew was written by Matthew. It was written about 50 to 70 AD, The purpose of the book I think was to prove to the Jews that Jesus was the Messiah, The heir of David, Also to teach the church " Teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you "
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