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Thread: Another view of the Olivet Discourse

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    Another view of the Olivet Discourse

    I want to give my views on the Olivet Discourse (OD). The OD is one of the most difficult and controversial topics of biblical study. It is sometimes just referred to as Matthew 24. The OD is found in three (3) of the four (4) Gospels in the following passages:

    • Matthew 24:1-35
    • Mark 13
    • Luke 21:5-36

    I’ve studied the OD for many years and was never satisfied with the multiple views of the various commentators. Finally, I decided to approach this topic with the consideration of the context of the whole bible – God’s redemptive plan for mankind. With this study, I used the bible itself for a reference book depending little on outside sources. Furthermore, I think that is the correct approach and doing so spiritually, because most of what Jesus said was spiritual in nature - not to say that some of the OD is literal - Matthew 24:4-14 and Luke 21:8-19 for example.

    The Matthew and Luke accounts are almost exactly the same, while the Luke account is a bit different. There is no doubt, however, that Jesus gave both at the same setting – probably to two different groups of his disciples. Nevertheless, I will chronologically comment from the Matthew account periodically inserting pertinent verses from Luke. Matthew 24:1 starts the OD on (probably) Wednesday afternoon. That night, Jesus told his disciples the events that would occur through the following Sunday when He was resurrected. The final event happened on the Day of Pentecost 47 days after the resurrection.

    With the exception of my presentation of the OD, every view that I’ve previously researched points to the 70 AD literal destruction of Jerusalem as the main topic. However, I disagree. Moreover I’ll go as far to say, it is not at all the focal point and has very little significance with the meaning of this discourse. It is, however, implied as an end result of the spiritual destruction that Jesus pronounced on Jerusalem a few days before the OD (Matthew 23:38) – literally happening 40 years later. In fact, the 70 AD destruction of Jerusalem is mentioned nowhere conclusively in the bible. All in all, the question is begged, what does the literal destruction of Jerusalem have to do with God’s redemptive plan for mankind? I think the answer is obvious. Nevertheless, I’ll use Luke 21:22 as a springboard passage to start this study and establish a context.

    Lk 21:22. For now is the time of punishment in fulfillment of all that has been written.

    On first glance, it would seem that Jerusalem is what is being discussed, but consider the following questions:

    • Was the destruction of Jerusalem the context “all that has been written” in the OT? No.
    • Is Jesus the context of the OT? Yes.
    • Did Jesus take punishment? Yes.

    Isaiah 53:5. But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was on him, and by his wounds we are healed.

    Some may say that I took the above verse out of context. If the OD is about Jerusalem, I did. However as I’ve stated, it is not about Jerusalem. The concept of Jesus taking our punishment for sins was indeed part of God’s redemptive plan for mankind. In fact, Jesus is the purpose of the OT (“all that had been written”).
    As Jesus begins this OD, he will continue to reveal other parts of this redemptive plan. So, the context is set as we begin.

    Mt 24:1. Jesus left the temple and was walking away when his disciples came up to him to call his attention to its buildings.
    Mt 24 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.”

    I have two points to make concerning these two verses – The spiritual language issue and the Wailing Wall issue:

    After reading these two verses, it is understandable how these verses could be misconstrued to mean the literal destruction of Jerusalem in 70 AD. However, since Jesus almost exclusively spoke spiritual language during his earthly ministry, it stands to reason that he would speak in the same manner here. This passage could be put under the same umbrella as John 2:19, referring to the tearing down of the Temple and Jesus rebuilding it in 3 days. Of course in the John 2:19 account, the spiritual meaning is explained to us (John 2:21). However, it appears God in His inspired Word, left the OD event for us to figure out.

    The Wailing Wall (sometimes referred to as the Western Wall) was constructed in 20 B.C.E. and used as a retaining wall to hold back dirt, thus making a mound for the Temple to sit on. In addition, one side of this wall was exposed. Today, this portion of wall is the only thing that remains from the Temple, and the Jews consider it the holiest place on earth. Several questions arise:

    1. Was the Wailing Wall part of the Temple in Jesus Time?
    2. Was the Wailing Wall inclusive in part of the “buildings” per the disciples’ question?

    3. Was the Wailing Wall inclusive in “things” as per Jesus’ reply?
    4. Was the Wailing Wall considered holy during the time of Jesus?

    I would answer, yes, to all of the above questions. When using the words “buildings” and “things,” I would take that to mean all of the structures in the temple area including the walls. But was the Wailing Wall used as a wall during the time of Jesus? No, but it was part of the hill that the Temple set on. Therefore if the hill was holy, the wall forming the hill was also. Initially, this is how God meant it to be as referenced by the following scripture:


    Ezekiel 43:12. “This is the law of the temple: All the surrounding area on top of
    the mountain will be most holy. Such is the law of the Temple


    Concerning question #4. If the Wailing Wall were holy today, then it would be holy during Jesus’ day. Of course as Christians, we know that nothing physical is holy today (Col 2:14). However, the point I’m trying to make is that the Wailing Wall is part of the holy temple structure (question #1).

    What does all this mean and how does it relate to my argument? Jesus said, “not one stone here will be left on another, every one will be thrown down.” Did Jesus make a mistake because the Wailing Wall is still standing? No. Jesus doesn’t make mistakes. I think Jesus is simply saying in these two verses that the old Mosaic dispensation will be replaced with the new Christian Dispensation.

    Mt 24:3. As Jesus was sitting on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to him privately, “Tell us,” they said, “when will this happen and what will be the sign of your coming, and of the end of the age?”

    The disciples asked 3 questions. Jesus proceeded to answer all 3. I’m convinced that they didn’t understand his answers. In fact, they didn’t understand until they became readers of the OD (vs 15).

    Matthew 24:4-14
    .


    As mentioned earlier, Matthew 24:4-14 is literal and self-explanatory, so I will skip and resume with verse 15.


    Mt 24:15. So when you see standing in the holy place, the abomination that causes desolation, spoken of through the prophet Daniel--let the reader understand.

    To understand this verse, we need to go to Daniel and discover the identity of the ‘abomination that causes desolation.’ We can also discover other truths from the Daniel passage. In fact, this one verse sums-up much of God’s redemptive plan for mankind.

    Daniel 9:27. He will confirm a covenant with many for one seven. In the middle of the seven, he will put an end to sacrifice and offering. And on a wing of the temple he will set up an abomination that causes desolation, until the end that is decreed is poured out on him.


    • “confirm acovenant”: This is the people who accepted Christianity.
    • one seven”: This is seven years. From the point in time of the starting of the public ministry to the acceptance of the Gospel by the Gentile is seven years. Jesus started his public ministry around 27 A.D. The time of the acceptance of the Gospel by Cornelius was around 34 A.D.
    • middle of the seven”: The public ministry of Jesus lasted 3½ years, and then he was crucified. By the end of the next 3½ years, the Gospel was proclaimed to the Gentiles – represented by Cornelius.
    • put an end to the sacrifices and offerings”: When Jesus was crucified, all of the Old Testament laws and ordinances were nailed to the cross or abolished (Col 2:14). Included in the laws & ordinances were the sacrifice and offerings.


    • ·a wing of the Temple”: Represents Christ, the temple, who took on the sins of the world.(sin was attached to Christ).


    • Abomination that causes desolation”: God initially created everything perfect. When sin entered the world, imperfection was manifested (one small white lie will separate us from a perfect God). Imperfection is an abomination in the broadest sense of the word. Abominations will bring desolation to the spirit of man. The source of all sin (abomination) is Satan. Yes, Satan is the abomination that causes desolation. Even though Satan was defeated at the cross, he is still allowed to exist and operate today.
    • end that is decreed”: This is the judgment of God on Satan.
    • poured out on him”: At the end of time, just punishment will be given to Satan.


    In Mt 24:15, I think Jesus is referring to the 3.5 days of the Passion period when Satan had control of the universe (or thought he had control). The holy place is one piece of real estate in which he wasn’t allowed. We know from scripture that Satan is prideful (1 Tim 3:6). In addition, history points out that when a king or general conquered a foreign country they usually paraded around the most important place in that conquered country. Satan is no different. When he thought he had conquered the Son of God, I think he paraded to the most sacred place on earth - the holy place in the temple. A good example to this thought is when Hitler conquered France in World War II, he paraded around the Eiffel Tower. (I don’t mean to be theatrical with all of this. I just believe this is what happened).

    It’s strange that Jesus said, “let the reader understand.” This tells me that the OD was not intended for His immediate audience. In fact and as previously mentioned, they didn’t understand most of what Jesus said until later. The twin verse of Mt 24:15 is Luke 21:20. In the Luke account the armies surrounding Jerusalem is not the Roman armies, but Satan’s armies.

    Mt 24:16. Then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains.
    Mt 24:17. Let no one on the roof of his house go down to take any thing out of the house.
    Mt 24:18. Let no one in the field go back to get his cloak.
    Mt 24:19. How dreadful it will be in those days for pregnant women and nursing mothers!
    Mt 24 20. Pray that your flight will not take place in winter or on the Sabbath.

    The above verses (16-21) shouldn’t be dissected to get various meanings – they all mean one thing. This type of language is called a pre-figurative hyperbole (exaggerated language to make a point). Much of the OT is written in this type of language. The point here is that a very serious situation is about to occur.

    Mt 24:21. for there will be great distress, unequaled from the beginning of the world until now and never to be equaled again.
    Mt 24:22. If those days had not been cut short, no one would survive, but for the sake of the elect those days will be shortened.

    Jesus was right when he made these statements. The Creator and the only hope of salvation for mankind was being tortured, murdered, and under the control of sin/death/Satan. For 3.5 days after Jesus surrendered to death, Satan was in complete control and all creation was in trouble. If Satan had ruled more than 3.5 days, it would be difficult to even imagine the calamites that would have happened – of course, none of us would be here today.

    These above verses could not be referring to the 70 AD destruction of Jerusalem because there have been other distresses in history much more catastrophic i.e. Noah’s flood, the Black Plague in Europe during the middle ages, and the holocaust during World War II. Nothing like this event has ever happened since creation, and nothing like this will ever happen again. Jesus died for everybody’s sins throughout all the history of mankind.

    In verse 21, some biblical versions use the word “tribulation” instead of “distress.” In fact, this verse is probably the greatest contributor to the “Great Tribulation” event that some think is future. However I’m convinced the Great Tribulation has already occurred. It occurred during the 3.5 Passion days (Rev 7:14).

    The sister verse to the above verses is Luke 21:24 and is a very difficult and tricky verse. (I do realize I may be stretching assumptions with my interpretation of this verse, because it’s hard to conclusively prove. However unless I can be disproved, this is what I believe).

    Luke 21:24. They will fall by the sword and will be taken as prisoners to all the nations. The Gentiles will trample Jerusalem on until the times of the Gentiles are fulfilled.

    “The Gentiles will trample Jerusalem” and the “times of the Gentiles” have two different meanings. The “Gentiles will trample Jerusalem,” from the above scripture, refers to the spiritual nations that will ransack Jerusalem during the spiritual battle at the cross. After that happened, Jesus lead his army to conquer those same spiritual nations (Zech 14:1-3)(Rev 6:2)(Rev 11:15). I think the “times of the Gentiles” is referring to the physical Gentiles who had the opportunity to accept Jesus and become God’s people – technically beginning when Jesus was resurrected, but came into effect 3.5 years after the Day of Pentecost starting with Cornelius.

    The sword is spiritually the Word that condemns these conquered and imprisoned spiritual beings, which were sent to all the spiritual nations of the world. We know the spiritual nations parallel the physical nations (Dan 10) (Eph 4:8), but I don’t know to what extent. I’ll speculate and say these spiritual beings are who make up the principalities and powers mentioned in Eph 6:12. How and why? We do know that they oppose God, they are evil, and they are everywhere. The key word that make me form this opinion is that they are in “all” the nations. Therefore, every human being can be influence by these beings evil schemes to turn us away from God. (I’ll repeat and say that I have no direct scripture to back up these thoughts).

    Mt 24:23. At that time if anyone says to you, ‘Look, here is the Messiah!’ or, ‘There he is!’ do not believe it.
    Mt 24:24. For false messiahs and false prophets will appear and perform great signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect.
    Mt 24:25. See, I have told you ahead of time.
    Mt 24:26
    . “So if anyone tells you, ‘There he is, out in the wilderness,’ do not go out; or, ‘Here he is, in the inner rooms,’ do not believe it.
    Mt 24:27.
    For as lightning that comes from the east is visible even in the west, so will be the coming of the Son of Man.
    Mt 24:28
    . Wherever there is a carcass, there the vultures will gather
    .


    From the above collective verses, I think Jesus is saying one thing. “I am the true Messiah.” Verse 28 is spiritual language meaning; the times and events will all come together for God’s purposes.


    Mt 24:29
    . Immediately after the distress of those days: The sun will be darkened and the moon will not give its light: the stars will fall from the sky, and the heavenly bodies will be shaken.


    Again, this is hyperbolic language used by Jesus quoting Joel 2:28-32 and again in Acts 2:20. This kind of language is used throughout the Old Testament when an abrupt and drastic change is about to occur, and/or when a new world order was about to emerge (Isa 13:10)(Ezk 32:7). In fact, many abrupt changes are about to occur. The spiritual war at the cross that resulted in the spiritual nations brought under the control of God (Rev 11:15), the empire (kingdom)(church) of God is being ushered into the world, and the resurrection of the OT saints who lived and died before the cross in which I’ll expound on in the next two verses.

    Mt 24:30. At that time the sign of the Son of Man will appear in the sky, and all the nations of the earth will mourn. They will see the Son of Man
    coming on the clouds of the sky with power and great glory,
    Mt 24:31. and he will send his angels with a loud trumpet call, and they will gather his elect from the four winds, from one end of the heavens to the other.

    I don’t believe the above verses refer to the final trumpet call (end of the world). Apparently, there was some sort of a gathering or some sort of resurrection of God’s people (elect) who had died before the death of Jesus. This thought starts with Dan 7:9-10 – a judgment scene and continued in Dan 12:1-2. Furthermore it stands to reason why this would occur. How and why? There was no salvation for anyone until the blood of Christ was shed (Heb 10:4). Yet when the OT saints were resurrected, the blood of Christ perfected them, just as we (living on this side of the cross) are spiritually perfected at baptism. The best verse that supports this idea is Hebrews 11:39-40. I might add that these OT saints are the ones mentioned in Rev 7:13-15.

    The “nations that will mourn” are the spiritual nations that are counterpart nations of the actual nations on earth (Dan 10). Notice the word “they” (vs. 30). Why didn’t Jesus say “you?” The “they” are the spiritual nations. In short, “flesh and blood” did not witness these events, but the spiritual world did.

    Mt 24:32. Now learn this lesson from the fig tree: As soon as its twigs get tender and its leaves come out, you know that summer is near.
    Mt 24:33. Even so, when you see all these things, you know that it is near, right at the door.

    The crucifixion and the resurrection occurred during the Passover celebration in early spring before the leaves on the fig trees emerge. The Day of Pentecost was celebrated 50 days after the Passover Feast, which occurred in the early summer. By that time all of the leaves on the fig tree would have indeed emerged. In other words, Jesus is saying that when the leaves on the trees had fully appeared, then it would be time for the Day of Pentecost and the time that the Empire of God (Church) to be ushered in. At this time, God’s redemptive plan for mankind would be defined. This event ends the Olivet Discourse.

    Mt 24:34. “I tell you the truth; this generation will certainly not pass away until all these things have happened.”

    When Jesus made these OD statements, the crucifixion was three days away and the Day of Pentecost was 52 days away. With a Jewish generation being forty years, these events certainly happened in the present generation of Jesus’ immediate audience. Therefore, this one point disqualifies the possibility of the OD prioritizing the literal 70 AD destruction of Jerusalem, which happened forty years later and would have been in the next generation. Furthermore according to tradition, all of the Apostles, with the exception of John, were dead when Jerusalem was destroyed in 70 AD.

    In conclusion, the Olivet Discourse is simply about the following:
    1. The crucifixion.
    2. The resurrection.
    3. The collection of the “elect” who lived and died before the cross
    4. The establishment of the Church on the Day of Pentecost
    5. The future of the kingdom of God (Church).

    And, all of the above points are part of God’s redemptive plan for mankind, which is what the whole context of the Bible is about.
    .
    ___________________________________________
    I'm just a nobody telling everybody about somebody who can save anybody

  2. #2

    Re: Another view of the Olivet Discourse

    I'm just going to fly through with some of my own questions.

    Quote Originally Posted by sudds
    Lk 21:22. For now is the time of punishment in fulfillment of all that has been written.

    On first glance, it would seem that Jerusalem is what is being discussed, but consider the following questions:

    • Was the destruction of Jerusalem the context “all that has been written” in the OT? No.
    • Is Jesus the context of the OT? Yes.
    • Did Jesus take punishment? Yes.

    Isaiah 53:5. But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was on him, and by his wounds we are healed.
    You're making a minor connection based on a single similar word. The Greek word in Luke 21.22 means something like "vengeance". As in, God is avenging his murdered followers.

    Some may say that I took the above verse out of context. If the OD is about Jerusalem, I did. However as I’ve stated, it is not about Jerusalem.
    You're divorcing the entire Olivet Discourse from its context; it follows on the heels of Jesus pronouncing his seven woes against the Pharisees, which he ends by saying, "Jerusalem, Jerusalem". If we remove the unnatural chapter division between Matthew 23 and 24, it's one continuous narrative; when the Apostles ask Jesus about the temple's destruction, they said, "When will these things take place?" Plural. "These things" refers to the temple's destruction (one thing) and to the pouring out of God's wrath upon that generation (plural things).

    Your connection of Luke 21.22 with Isaiah 52 is based entirely on one word, which has several meanings. So yes, that is taking it out of context, because it's not a substantial enough basis for the interpretation you're offering.

    After reading these two verses, it is understandable how these verses could be misconstrued to mean the literal destruction of Jerusalem in 70 AD.
    Because, you know, they were pointing at the temple when Jesus said it would be torn down?

    However, since Jesus almost exclusively spoke spiritual language during his earthly ministry
    No he didn't. When he spoke in parables, it was clear from the context that he was speaking in parables. When he was speaking straightforward, it was clear from the context that he was speaking straightforward. In the continuous narrative of Matthew 23-24, nothing indicates that he was speaking in parables or "spiritual language".

    it stands to reason that he would speak in the same manner here
    Provide a reason why.

    This passage could be put under the same umbrella as John 2:19, referring to the tearing down of the Temple and Jesus rebuilding it in 3 days.
    You need more of a connection than simply "the temple". The OD speaks of God's wrath, God's vengeance, the abomination of desolation (language which intentionally echoed Daniel 11, which contained a prophecy about the actual temple being desecrated in 167 BC), the death and captivity of the people, fleeing into the hills of Judea from the city, Jerusalem being surrounded by armies, the entire world hearing the gospel, and the destruction of the temple. Nothing at all describes Jesus rebuilding a temple here.

    The Wailing Wall (sometimes referred to as the Western Wall) was constructed in 20 B.C.E. and used as a retaining wall to hold back dirt, thus making a mound for the Temple to sit on. In addition, one side of this wall was exposed. Today, this portion of wall is the only thing that remains from the Temple, and the Jews consider it the holiest place on earth.
    The "temple mount" wasn't the same thing as the temple itself. You're literalizing Jesus' words to an unnecessary extreme: his point was that the temple would be destroyed.

    Initially, this is how God meant it to be as referenced by the following scripture:


    Ezekiel 43:12. “This is the law of the temple: All the surrounding area on top of
    the mountain will be most holy. Such is the law of the Temple
    Speaking about a prophesied temple which was not the same thing as the temple in Jerusalem in Jesus' day...

    The disciples asked 3 questions. Jesus proceeded to answer all 3. I’m convinced that they didn’t understand his answers.
    On what basis? If you're "convinced" of this, you need a tangible reason that can be found in the text that shows they didn't understand. Not a whim.

    In fact, they didn’t understand until they became readers of the OD (vs 15).
    This note about "let the reader understand" is specifically referring to Jesus' reference to the prophecies of Daniel. It's either Jesus telling the person who has read Daniel's book understand what he means when he refers to the abomination of desolation, or it's the narrator telling his own reader to understand Jesus' reference to Daniel. Either way, you're drastically ripping this statement from its context. It's about Jesus referring to the book of Daniel (which is why he only says it right after mentioning the book of Daniel), not to his Apostles not understanding him speaking to their faces.

    As mentioned earlier, Matthew 24:4-14 is literal and self-explanatory, so I will skip and resume with verse 15.
    Whoa whoa whoa. Why? What reason do you have for skipping all of this, brushing it aside because it's "literal and self-explanatory". Earlier you claimed that Jesus "almost exclusively spoke spiritual language during his earthly ministry", but now you're skipping half of his prophecy, claiming it's "literal and self-explanatory". What does that even mean in the context of what you're claiming Jesus was speaking about? You're claiming that Jesus was prophesying about his own death within the next two weeks, that he "almost exclusively spoke spiritual language during his earthly ministry", but you turn right around and somehow fit "wars and rumors of wars" and various natural disasters and signs in heaven and his Apostles preaching the gospel to "the whole world" into that same two weeks time before Jesus' death. Nothing about this makes any sense.

    • Abomination that causes desolation”: God initially created everything perfect. When sin entered the world, imperfection was manifested (one small white lie will separate us from a perfect God). Imperfection is an abomination in the broadest sense of the word. Abominations will bring desolation to the spirit of man. The source of all sin (abomination) is Satan. Yes, Satan is the abomination that causes desolation. Even though Satan was defeated at the cross, he is still allowed to exist and operate today.
    • end that is decreed”: This is the judgment of God on Satan.
    • poured out on him”: At the end of time, just punishment will be given to Satan.
    You're skipping Daniel 11 entirely. With Daniel 11 comes Daniel 8. These two chapters tell us about the rise of the Greeks over Judah, and about the rise of Antiochus IV Epiphanes as chief oppressor of God's people. Daniel 11 speaks of how Antiochus IV Epiphanes desecrated the temple in about 167 BC, calling it "the abomination of desolation". This is what Jesus is echoing. Antiochus desecrated the physical temple with an act of unclean sacrifice on the temple grounds. It wasn't just "imperfection ... in the broadest sense of the word". Antiochus' wickedness led to the Maccabean Revolt. In fact, Matthew 24 continues several allusions to the book of Maccabees, which in turn uses the language from Daniel 11's prophecy to describe Antiochus' wickedness, explicitly calling it the "abomination of desolation". [1 Maccabees 1.54] Jesus is telling his Apostles that an act of similar type was going to happen to the temple again.

    I'm not necessarily saying your interpretation of Daniel 9 is faulted in itself... I'm saying that it is faulted because it doesn't take any of these facts into account. It's not a holistic interpretation, because it doesn't first exegete Daniel 8 or Daniel 11 according to their own contexts, and it doesn't hold Jesus' prophecy next to Daniel 8 or 11 to figure out what he's saying.

    In Mt 24:15, I think Jesus is referring to the 3.5 days of the Passion period when Satan had control of the universe (or thought he had control).
    Where in any of Scripture do you have support for this claim?

    The holy place is one piece of real estate in which he wasn’t allowed.
    Show from Scripture that Satan ever went inside the Holy Place, or even the Most Holy Place.

    We know from scripture that Satan is prideful (1 Tim 3:6). In addition, history points out that when a king or general conquered a foreign country they usually paraded around the most important place in that conquered country. Satan is no different. When he thought he had conquered the Son of God, I think he paraded to the most sacred place on earth - the holy place in the temple.
    Show this from Scripture. "I think"s are not a valid method of interpretation.

    It’s strange that Jesus said, “let the reader understand.”
    No it's not. He cited the book of Daniel, and now he's telling his Apostles that when they need to read the book of Daniel to understand what he himself is referring to when he cites Daniel's prophecy.

    In the Luke account the armies surrounding Jerusalem is not the Roman armies, but Satan’s armies.
    Jesus calls them Gentile armies. Where in any of Scripture are Satan's angels ever called "Gentiles"? Ever?

    The above verses (16-21) shouldn’t be dissected to get various meanings – they all mean one thing.
    I agree: Jesus was using language from the book of Maccabees when the faithful Jews literally fled the city of Jerusalem into the hills, because the literal city had been literally surrounded by literal Gentile armies.

    For 3.5 days after Jesus surrendered to death, Satan was in complete control and all creation was in trouble. If Satan had ruled more than 3.5 days, it would be difficult to even imagine the calamites that would have happened – of course, none of us would be here today.
    This is all pure speculation. None of this is actually based on Scripture. Scripture never says that Satan "was in complete control and all creation was in trouble" during the time Jesus was dead. You have nothing in Scripture or in any historical book to show that the time Jesus was dead was a time of untold catastrophe and destruction.

    What happened? Satan was in charge of creation but didn't realize it until Jesus had already resurrected? Satan was in charge but sat around for a few days?

    Nevermind that, you know, God (the Father) was still around. Or did the death of Jesus mean that God (the Father) suddenly wasn't in charge? Show Scripture.

    “The Gentiles will trample Jerusalem” and the “times of the Gentiles” have two different meanings. The “Gentiles will trample Jerusalem,” from the above scripture, refers to the spiritual nations that will ransack Jerusalem during the spiritual battle at the cross.
    What "spiritual nations" are you talking about? You haven't provided any Scripture to show that the word "Gentile" ever applied to anyone other than human nations comprised of non-Jews. You haven't provided any Scripture to show that Jesus' use of "Gentiles" in one verse was different from his use of it in the next verse.

    We know the spiritual nations parallel the physical nations (Dan 10) (Eph 4:8), but I don’t know to what extent.
    Since you don't know to what extent they parallel, and since you don't have much (if any) Scripture to base this notion on, how can you even make the claim then? Daniel 10 only shows one "prince" angel per real nation. The angel-prince of Persia was to be made low, to show that the nation of Persia would be overcome in 333 BC. The angel-prince of Greece was raised up, showing that the nation of Greece was the one which would rise to power and conquer Persia in 333 BC. You have nothing in either of these texts to build the idea that there are entire "spiritual nations".

    I’ll speculate
    Red alert. If you admit that you have to resort to speculating just to continue formulating your idea, you need to stop immediately, scrap everything, and start over. Study Daniel 8-12 carefully. Study Matthew 21-25 carefully. Keep everything in context. If you have an idea of what something might be meaning, fully study it, and use tangible cross-references to back it up (not single words, not whims, not "I think"s).

    From the above collective verses, I think Jesus is saying one thing. “I am the true Messiah.”
    Yeah. And he's telling his Apostles to reject the false messiahs who would come in his place. Again, when did false prophets and false messiahs rise up in the two weeks before Jesus' death?

    Verse 28 is spiritual language meaning; the times and events will all come together for God’s purposes
    No... It's prophetic judgment language, pertaining to God pouring out his wrath upon a nation. (Consider: Deuteronomy 28.26,49; Jeremiah 4.13; Habakkuk 1.8; Revelation 19.17-21). Think of a desert wilderness like that in ancient Judea. When hundreds or thousands of dead bodies are lying out in the sun, vultures circle and gather to devour the corpses. Which (guess what) happened in 67-70 AD.

    Again, this is hyperbolic language used by Jesus quoting Joel 2:28-32 and again in Acts 2:20. This kind of language is used throughout the Old Testament when an abrupt and drastic change is about to occur, and/or when a new world order was about to emerge (Isa 13:10)(Ezk 32:7). In fact, many abrupt changes are about to occur.
    You're close on with this. You're actually using other Scripture to develop the idea of what Jesus is saying. But consider the context. Jesus speaking about "days of vengeance" and "wrath against this people". He has prophesied woes upon the religious hypocrites in Judea, about the destruction of the temple, about Jerusalem being surrounded by armies. He's not prophesying about the beginning of a "new world order", he's prophesying about the end of a nation. (How else do you explain that they're talking about "the end of the age" [Matthew 24.3] and "the end" [24.6,14]).

    Every time this decreation language is used by the Old Testament prophets, it always was a prophecy about the fall of a nation. Every time. Jesus is prophesying about the fall of Judea to Rome, which happened in 70 AD. All of the events Jesus describes, when taken in the full context, and when interpreted with the framework laid by the Old Testament, was fulfilled between 30 AD and 70 AD. There were wars and rumors of wars, kingdoms and nations fighting, earthquakes, famines, plagues, signs in heaven, the Apostle preaching the gospel, standing before kings and governors, beaten in the synagogues, false prophets, false messiahs, Gentile armies surrounding Jerusalem, God's faithful fleeing the city, etc. All of this happened within that generation.

    The “nations that will mourn” are the spiritual nations that are counterpart nations of the actual nations on earth (Dan 10).
    The Greek word used is not "nations" but "tribes". Jesus is saying "the tribes will mourn". Regardless, John repeats this exact prophecy of Jesus in Revelation 1.7. How about that: Jesus said the tribes would mourn within that generation's lifetime, and John, writing near the end of that generation, said that the tribes would mourn "soon".

    Notice the word “they” (vs. 30). Why didn’t Jesus say “you?”
    Because "you" would have included his Apostles and other followers, and his Apostles had no reason to mourn? This is a poor interpretation either way.

    The crucifixion and the resurrection occurred during the Passover celebration in early spring before the leaves on the fig trees emerge.
    It's just an analogy. He wasn't using the fig tree to say anything about when it would take place, only that just as a person knows when Spring is near based on the signs of the fig tree blooming, so also would Jesus' Apostles know that the time of the Coming of the Son of Man was near based on the signs he had just prophesied to them. It has nothing to do with Spring itself.

    When Jesus made these OD statements, the crucifixion was three days away and the Day of Pentecost was 52 days away.
    You mean to say, less than two months away. The very language of Jesus' prophecy "this generation shall not pass away" infers that it would be a great deal of time before all of his prophecies were fulfilled. Why would Jesus say "before 40 years have passed" if it would all be within just two months? This is the same fallacy employed by some who claim that Matthew 16.27-28 was fulfilled within the next week. The language Jesus uses tells his listeners that it's going to take a good amount of time before it was all completed. Otherwise, why not just say "by Pentecost" or "within the next few months", rather than something like "sometime in the next 40 years". Your interpretation implies that Jesus' method of communication was either intentionally misleading (setting his Apostles' eyes decades into the future by his use of "generation"), or that Jesus himself didn't know his prophecies would be fulfilled so soon (making Jesus farsighted).

    With a Jewish generation being forty years
    When Israel was still in Egypt, God said he would save Israel after the "fourth generation". Israel was in Egypt for 400 years, making each generation 100 years. Scripture never defines the exact length of a generation. The length of each generation varies, because not everyone lives as long. Nailing down "40 years" to the day as being one "Bible generation" is an unnecessary strictness. We can come to a general average of what a "generation" can be considered, but again, it's just an average; generations can be short or long.

    Therefore, this one point disqualifies the possibility of the OD prioritizing the literal 70 AD destruction of Jerusalem, which happened forty years later and would have been in the next generation.
    This doesn't disqualify 70 AD, because your hard-hitting definition of "one generation" simply is not found in the Bible.

    Furthermore according to tradition, all of the Apostles, with the exception of John, were dead when Jerusalem was destroyed in 70 AD.
    When did Jesus say that they would all be alive to see Jerusalem destroyed? All he said was that their generation would not have passed before Jerusalem was destroyed.

  3. #3
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    Re: Another view of the Olivet Discourse

    sudds, I pretty much disagree with everything you said so I don't even know where to start. What about Matthew 24:36-51 and Matthew 25? Do you see all of that as having been fulfilled once the day of Pentecost came as well?

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