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Thread: Brief commentary on Matt 24

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    Brief commentary on Matt 24

    This is not your conventional view of the Olivet Discourse, but it is, I believe, essential if you are to understand it completely. This view is pretty much what the Church Fathers believed, and so is not heterodox teaching. But the original view in the Church was corrupted by many years of influences that were the product of common human misconceptions. This is just my best effort to explain it.


    Matt 24.Jesus 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. “Truly I tell you, not one stone here will be left on another; every one will be thrown down.”


    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?”


    Comment: The primary purpose of this Discourse is to announce the imminent destruction of the temple. However, inasmuch as this pronouncement brought conflicts in the minds of Jesus' disciples he had to address concerns outside of the issue of the temple destruction alone. The thought from the 70 Weeks prophecy of Dan 9 was that Messiah would come in roughly the time that Jesus came. And the disciples naturally thought that this should bring final atonement for Israel's sins.


    However, the prophecy in Dan 9 indicated that following the 70th Week there would be an Abomination of Desolation causing the destruction of Jerusalem and the temple. And so, Jesus' disciples asked him about the restoration of Israel at the coming of Messiah's Kingdom, in the light of the imminent destruction of Jerusalem and the temple.


    The question the disciples asked regarding the temple desolation is the primary issue. But of secondary importance is the issue of when Christ would come with his Kingdom, to save Israel.


    4 Jesus answered: “Watch out that no one deceives you. 5 For many will come in my name, claiming, ‘I am the Messiah,’ and will deceive many. 6 You will hear of wars and rumors of wars, but see to it that you are not alarmed. Such things must happen, but the end is still to come. 7 Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in various places. 8 All these are the beginning of birth pains.


    Comment: These signs leading up to the temple's destruction were not intended to lead to immediate salvation at the coming of Messiah's Kingdom. They were actually the "beginning" of troubles that would last for a long time until the Son of Man comes. The thought that all of these troubles would be concentrated in a single generation is therefore cast aside by Jesus, since he indicated that signs leading up to the temple's destruction would be but the beginning of a long period of Jewish Diaspora.


    9 “Then you will be handed over to be persecuted and put to death, and you will be hated by all nations because of me. 10 At that time many will turn away from the faith and will betray and hate each other, 11 and many false prophets will appear and deceive many people. 12 Because of the increase of wickedness, the love of most will grow cold, 13 but the one who stands firm to the end will be saved. 14 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.


    Comment: Jesus said the Gospel Mission would begin in his own generation, and would be involved along with the signs leading up to the temple's destruction. False prophecy consisted of those who advocated for war against the Romans, as well as false messiahs who claimed to be leaders in Israel. This clearly was something to be experienced by the apostles in their own generation. They would be persecuted and martyred, which is precisely what happened to many of them.


    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— 16 then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains. 17 Let no one on the housetop go down to take anything out of the house. 18 Let no one in the field go back to get their cloak. 19 How dreadful it will be in those days for pregnant women and nursing mothers! 20 Pray that your flight will not take place in winter or on the Sabbath. 21 For then there will be great distress, unequaled from the beginning of the world until now—and never to be equaled again.


    Comment: The Abomination of Desolation is a reference to Dan 9 and the 70 Weeks prophecy. It is *after* the 70th Week that the AoD brings about the desolation of the temple and the city of Jerusalem. And that abomination was the Roman Army led by Titus. This is what most of the Church Fathers believed. Irenaeus, Hippolytus, and modern futurists have hijacked this historical interpretation. They have insisted that the AoD is the Antichrist, rather than the Roman Army under Titus. But these signs were specifically for the apostles' generation, and they were to lead up to the desolation of the temple. The AoD cannot have been the Antichrist!


    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. 23 At that time if anyone says to you, ‘Look, here is the Messiah!’ or, ‘There he is!’ do not believe it. 24 For false messiahs and false prophets will appear and perform great signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect. 25 See, I have told you ahead of time.


    Comment: The Great Tribulation associated with the fall of the temple would eventually be "cut short," meaning that this distress would last a very long time. To cut it short is to end an interminable length of time. The distress associated with it would affect believers in the apostles' generation, as well as at the time just before the coming of the Kingdom.


    This Great Tribulation is the Jewish Diaspora of the NT era. It initially involved both believers and unbelievers in Israel, since all Jews were expelled by the Romans from the Holy Land. The believers formed the Early Church, and were persecuted, as well, by Jewish unbelievers.


    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. 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. 28 Wherever there is a carcass, there the vultures will gather.


    Comment: The Coming of the Son of Man is described as a sudden judgment, and as such, is something that can only be prepared for by maintaining vigil. To prepare for the Kingdom at an unknown time in the future Christians must maintain righteousness at all times, and not grow weary of doing right. It is to be expected that unbelievers will be gathered together, in order to be judged. And then judgment will suddenly strike them, without warning. This happened, in a sense, in 70 AD. But it is also an indication of what Christ's 2nd Coming will be like, at the Battle of Armageddon.


    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.’


    Comment: The Great Tribulation of the Jewish People, and of the Church, will end with the end of the times of the Gentiles. The darkening of the heavenly bodies indicates the end of time in the age, since the heavenly bodies were signs for times and seasons. Daniel indicated that the Kingdom of God would begin with a rock, who is Christ, and then become a mountain, which is the Church. And this Kingdom would come to destroy the powers of the pagan kingdoms of the world.


    30 “Then will appear the sign of the Son of Man in heaven. And then all the peoples of the earth will mourn when they 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 loud trumpet call, and they will gather his elect from the four winds, from one end of the heavens to the other.


    Comment: The remnant of Jewish believers, as well as Christians throughout the earth, will be gathered as though in a great national restoration. Angels gathering men indicates a resurrection from the dead, and a gathering for glorification in heaven, both of which are for the Church. This will be prerequisite for the establishment of God's Kingdom on the earth. The righteous must be given authority to govern the earth properly.


    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. 33 Even so, when you see all these things, you know that it is near, right at the door. 34 Truly I tell you, this generation will certainly not pass away until all these things have happened. 35 Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will never pass away.


    Comment: "This generation" has to do with the apostles' generation, in which Christ was crucified and the apostles martyred. This was the generation to see the signs leading up to and including the desolation of the temple. Excluded from "all these things" are events that transcend the desolation of the temple, which includes the things to take place during the Great Tribulation of the Jewish People and of the Church.

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    Re: Brief commentary on Matt 24

    This Generation will live to see it all.

    Luke 21:29-36 Jesus told them a parable: Look at the fig tree, as soon as it buds you can tell that summer is near. In the same way when you see all this happening, you will know that the Kingdom of God is near. Truly, I tell you the present generation will live to see it all. My words will never pass away.
    Be on your guard, do not let your minds be dulled by dissipation or worldly cares so that the great Day catches you unawares, for that Day will come upon everyone, the whole world over. Be on the alert, praying at all times for strength to pass safely through all that is coming and to stand in the presence of the Son of Man.
    Ref: REB

    The present generation - or the generation present: the same thing. When they see Judah become a nation again, we will know the end times are upon us.

    The fig tree – Israel is the vine, Judah is the fig tree: Isaiah 5:7, Hosea 9:10. The parable of the fig tree applies to the House of Judah, Matthew 21:43. Therefore when Judah starts to bud, that is: becomes a nation again, as they formed the State of Israel in May 1948, then within that generation, [a lifetime of 70 years] the end times events will commence. Ezekiel 12:25

    The great Day – The Day of the Lord’s vengeance and wrath, the multi prophesied judgement/punishment of the nations, an event that will come unexpectedly, sudden and shocking all those who have failed to understand the Lord's plans and purposes. Isaiah 29:5-12, Isaiah 66:15-16, Revelation 6:12-17
    That Day will come upon everyone – There is no ‘rapture’ at this time, all will go through this judgement. Isaiah 24:1, Psalms 50:1-3, Zephaniah 3:8

    Strength to pass safely through – This is often mistranslated as ‘escape all these things’, which is a serious error and is incorrect, as the previous sentence has just stated ‘that Day will come upon everyone’. What the Lord promises, is not a removal from earth – an escape as such, but protection. Psalms 91, Isaiah 43:1-2

    The presence of the Son of Man – Jesus called Himself the ‘Son of Man’, when He was present on earth in a human body. This was necessary so as He could become our ‘kinsman Redeemer’. After the great Day of the Lord, when every faithful Christian has gathered in the holy Land, they will stand in His presence when the 144,000 are selected; Revelation 14:1. Then, later at His glorious Return, His Name will be ‘The Word of God’. Revelation 19:13

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    Re: Brief commentary on Matt 24

    Two questions are asked. Context isn't 100% clear which parts of the Olivet discourse are relating to which question. To add confusion, prophets often predicted imminent events, but while prophesying were inspired to predict similar events related to the coming of Jesus. There are many examples of this near/far prophecy in the Bible. So the destruction of the temple and the second coming would likely have matching circumstances.

    The secret then is not to be too dogmatic about which parts belong where. We must rather maintain our readiness that it's possible that there is an abomination which is a precursor to the second coming and be aware of the circumstances surrounding that abomination.

    My view is that up to v14 there is an overlap of events applying to both history and the end times. Then v14 mentions the Gospel preached to all nations and mentions the "end" and goes on to speak about end times events.

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    Re: Brief commentary on Matt 24

    Quote Originally Posted by randyk View Post
    This is not your conventional view of the Olivet Discourse, but it is, I believe, essential if you are to understand it completely. This view is pretty much what the Church Fathers believed, and so is not heterodox teaching. But the original view in the Church was corrupted by many years of influences that were the product of common human misconceptions. This is just my best effort to explain it.


    Matt 24.Jesus 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. “Truly I tell you, not one stone here will be left on another; every one will be thrown down.”


    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?”


    Comment: The primary purpose of this Discourse is to announce the imminent destruction of the temple. However, inasmuch as this pronouncement brought conflicts in the minds of Jesus' disciples he had to address concerns outside of the issue of the temple destruction alone. The thought from the 70 Weeks prophecy of Dan 9 was that Messiah would come in roughly the time that Jesus came. And the disciples naturally thought that this should bring final atonement for Israel's sins.


    However, the prophecy in Dan 9 indicated that following the 70th Week there would be an Abomination of Desolation causing the destruction of Jerusalem and the temple. And so, Jesus' disciples asked him about the restoration of Israel at the coming of Messiah's Kingdom, in the light of the imminent destruction of Jerusalem and the temple.


    The question the disciples asked regarding the temple desolation is the primary issue. But of secondary importance is the issue of when Christ would come with his Kingdom, to save Israel.


    ...
    I will only address your preamble, for if the foundation is faulty then the whole building collapses. May the reader judge.

    The disciples' question regarding the Temple is provoked by our Lord Jesus' statement only minutes before in Matthew 23:37-38.

    37 "O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou that killest the prophets, and stonest them which are sent unto thee, how often would I have gathered thy children together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and ye would not!
    38 Behold, your house is left unto you desolate."


    To the Jew, the Temple is everything. It is the center of the Law for it was here that Israel were to gather three times a year to feast their tithe, it was here that the very God and Creator of the universe lived on earth, it was the one thing that made them different and superior to the nations around them. It was their trump card! While it stood, the Jews thought that their nation, the Law and the culture was safe. And it would have unsettled the disciples no end to hear that Jesus had declared the Temple, the same Temple He called, "My Father's House" in John Chapter 2, VACANT. It was unthinkable that the very God Who was Israel's hope, protection and source of blessing was GONE. It is no longer "My Father's House" but "YOUR house".

    So probably within an hour, the time it takes to leave the Temple and scale Mount Olives, the disconcerted disciples approached Him about the Temple. Our Lord's answer is short and poignant. The Temple, in the near future, would not have one stone left standing upon another. That ended that question.

    But before we proceed, we must settle the issue of which "generation" would suffer these things. Is it that group of Pharisees and citizens of Jerusalem of 30 AD? Or is it the TYPE of person generated starting from Adam's fallen loins? The Bible does use the length of a man's life to indicate a generation, like Israel would be in Egypt "four generations". But nowhere in the whole Bible does it FIX the length of time that a generation takes to appear and disappear. Adam was not "generated", but Seth, "generated" by Adam, lived 912 years. On the other end of the scale, Herod ordered the end of children under two years at the time of the birth of Jesus. And in between 912 years and less than two years for a lifetime of one "generated" we have any number of different times. Thus, to define the time of a generation in the Bible is pure "private interpretation" and not allowed.

    The "generation" that our LOrd Jesus alluded to was NOT the length of time a man lived, or even the present men who were alive. Our Lord sets the boundaries of that which Adam "generated" in Matthew 23:30-37. He apportions the GUILT of the murdered Abel and the murdered prophets to "this generation". They are all "generated" by a Viper, for Genesis 1:11-12 sets forth an immutable Law that everything with seed in itself will produce the same species. And Cain, inheriting the NATURE of Adam, killed Abel. Since this time the SAME "generation" has been at work killing God's messengers. Our Lord Jesus apportions the blame on "this generation", "That upon you may come all the righteous blood shed upon the earth"!

    It is abundantly clear that "generation" in the Olivet discourse is not a specific group of people living then, but the TYPE of person "generated" with the serpentine nature. This in turn disallows any "pegging" of years to the events predicted in the Olivet Discourse.

    Be that as it may, to continue, our Lord Jesus had addressed another point equally disturbing. In Matthew 23:39 our Lord concluded His dialogue with the Jews with,

    "For I say unto you, Ye shall not see me henceforth, till ye shall say, Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord."

    So the next, and NEW question does NOT address the Temple. It addresses the COMING of the Lord AGAIN when the Jews will not reject Him but embrace Him. So the question of the disciples is now in Matthew 24:3;

    "And as he sat upon the mount of Olives, the disciples came unto him privately, saying, Tell us,
    1. when shall these things be?
    2. and what shall be the sign of thy coming,
    3. and what shall be the sign of the end of the AGE ("aion" - Gk.)?"


    What follows up to and including verse 31 PERTAIN TO THINGS JEWISH UNTIL CHRIST BURSTS FORTH FROM THE CLOUDS OVER MOUNT OLIVES! An inspection of the things and events of verses 4 - 31 show all things Jewish that will come to pass between the destruction of the Temple and the "gathering" of Israel as predicted by Ezekiel 37.
    1. False Christ's are a Jewish problem. The world is indifferent to Christ and false Christs, and the Church know Who and where Jesus Christ is
    2. Wars worldwide - a phenomena of all the years till Christ Comes
    3. Persecution and hate of the Jews. Even today their synagogues are bombed in the most civilized countries
    4. False Prophets. Our Lord predicted that the Jewish Leaders would be the blind leading the blind
    5. There would be a Remnant, like Elijah's time, who would "endure till the end" (Deut.30:1-5, Rev.7:1-8)
    6. "This gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come" sets the time boundaries of Israel's chastisement
    7. "The abomination of desolation" is a Jewish plight predicted by Daniel, a Jewish prophet, to "Daniel's People (the Jews), stand in a Jewish holy place
    8. Judaea is the are surrounding Jerusalem . the Jewish Holy City
    9. The Sabbath is peculiar to Jewish Law
    10. The Great Tribulation - Jacob's Trouble
    11. Then THE false Christ - the Beast coming with lying wonders to be embraced by the Jews as per Daniel Chapter 9
    12. Then comes a time of the "carcase" a killing ground - Armageddon - 70 miles west of Jerusalem
    13. Then the "sign" of the Son of man. A "sign" is for the Jews (1st Cor.1.22). The Church gets no "signs". They are already looking to heaven for their Savior by FAITH (Phil.3:20)
    14. The "Tribes of the Land" is Israel. The Church is "those of the heavenly calling"
    15. Only Israel is scattered to the "four winds" an so only Israel gathered from the "four winds" (Zech.2:6; Jer.49:36; Ezek.37:9)

    The Olivet Discourse in Matthew 24:4-31 covers the period from the destruction of the Temple until Christ sends His angels to gather Israel from the diaspora. IT CONCERNs THE JEWS. Except for the "preaching of the gospel of the Kingdom", the CHURCH IS NOT ALLUDED TO IN THIS PORTION OF SCRIPTURE. This part of the Olivet Discourse PERTAINS TO ISRAEL IN CHASTISEMENT which ends with the coming of their Messiah from the clouds and their gathering from dispersion.

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    Re: Brief commentary on Matt 24

    Quote Originally Posted by randyk View Post
    This is not your conventional view of the Olivet Discourse, but it is, I believe, essential if you are to understand it completely. This view is pretty much what the Church Fathers believed, and so is not heterodox teaching. But the original view in the Church was corrupted by many years of influences that were the product of common human misconceptions. This is just my best effort to explain it.
    This is NOT pretty much what the ECFs believed. They didn't have a uniform teaching. Different ECFs stating different things.
    This is more as you say YOUR stitching together of various ECF ideas to make into one. Yet NOT one ECF held your view.

    Matt 24.Jesus 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. “Truly I tell you, not one stone here will be left on another; every one will be thrown down.”
    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?”

    Comment: The primary purpose of this Discourse is to announce the imminent destruction of the temple. However, inasmuch as this pronouncement brought conflicts in the minds of Jesus' disciples he had to address concerns outside of the issue of the temple destruction alone. The thought from the 70 Weeks prophecy of Dan 9 was that Messiah would come in roughly the time that Jesus came. And the disciples naturally thought that this should bring final atonement for Israel's sins.
    Nope, the PRIMARY purpose for the Discourse is NOT a direct answer to either of these questions.
    The PRIMARY purpose was to prepare the Disciples for what was to come UNTIL Jesus was to return.
    That time frame is mainly bracketed by these two questions.
    The destruction of the temple being the START, and the sign of His coming with the end of the age being the END.
    What then follows is details covering many things.
    Last edited by ForHisglory; Nov 7th 2018 at 02:43 PM.

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    Re: Brief commentary on Matt 24

    Quote Originally Posted by DurbanDude View Post
    Two questions are asked. Context isn't 100% clear which parts of the Olivet discourse are relating to which question. To add confusion, prophets often predicted imminent events, but while prophesying were inspired to predict similar events related to the coming of Jesus. There are many examples of this near/far prophecy in the Bible. So the destruction of the temple and the second coming would likely have matching circumstances.

    The secret then is not to be too dogmatic about which parts belong where. We must rather maintain our readiness that it's possible that there is an abomination which is a precursor to the second coming and be aware of the circumstances surrounding that abomination.

    My view is that up to v14 there is an overlap of events applying to both history and the end times. Then v14 mentions the Gospel preached to all nations and mentions the "end" and goes on to speak about end times events.
    Anybody who wishes to communicate sensibly to others will not speak using "dualisms." Sure, there are motifs used that aid in understanding repetitions in history. But this should not lose a sense of attachment to certain defined elements, which otherwise would confuse the meaning.

    Jesus spoke in the clearest possible terms that the temple in Jerusalem would be judged, and that Jerusalem itself would be judged. And he made it clear that this was a result of their rejecting him as Messiah. This is not, therefore, a future generation he is speaking of. He had already made it clear that he was speaking to his own generation!

    The AoD is therefore his description of the temple's destruction, as drawn from Dan 9, where the AoD follows the 70th Week in which Christ is "cut off." None of this is forced into the passage. This is precisely what Jesus was talking about.

    Jesus was, at the same time, asked how this relates to his Coming and to the coming of the Kingdom. His answer was that nobody can know the precise day and hour of his return. But men can be assured that men in his own generation will see the destruction of the temple, which he called the AoD.

    When Jesus said, therefore, that "all these things" would be seen in "this generation," he was simply restating what he had already been saying, that the temple would be destroyed for what his own generation had been doing. They had rejected their Messiah, and so would lose their temple.

    All of the signs leading up to the temple's destruction would be seen in his own generation. But some of these signs would continue until the end of the age, when he would return. Nothing could be more natural to the language Jesus used. Why complicate it?

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    Re: Brief commentary on Matt 24

    Quote Originally Posted by randyk View Post
    Anybody who wishes to communicate sensibly to others will not speak using "dualisms." Sure, there are motifs used that aid in understanding repetitions in history. But this should not lose a sense of attachment to certain defined elements, which otherwise would confuse the meaning.

    Jesus spoke in the clearest possible terms that the temple in Jerusalem would be judged, and that Jerusalem itself would be judged. And he made it clear that this was a result of their rejecting him as Messiah. This is not, therefore, a future generation he is speaking of. He had already made it clear that he was speaking to his own generation!

    The AoD is therefore his description of the temple's destruction, as drawn from Dan 9, where the AoD follows the 70th Week in which Christ is "cut off." None of this is forced into the passage. This is precisely what Jesus was talking about.

    Jesus was, at the same time, asked how this relates to his Coming and to the coming of the Kingdom. His answer was that nobody can know the precise day and hour of his return. But men can be assured that men in his own generation will see the destruction of the temple, which he called the AoD.

    When Jesus said, therefore, that "all these things" would be seen in "this generation," he was simply restating what he had already been saying, that the temple would be destroyed for what his own generation had been doing. They had rejected their Messiah, and so would lose their temple.

    All of the signs leading up to the temple's destruction would be seen in his own generation. But some of these signs would continue until the end of the age, when he would return. Nothing could be more natural to the language Jesus used. Why complicate it?

    You acknowledge two sets of events in Matthew 24, first century events and then the events before the second coming.

    It is while speaking of the events surrounding the second coming, that Jesus uses the phrase "this generation". I believe this is the generation referred to.

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    Re: Brief commentary on Matt 24

    Quote Originally Posted by Walls View Post
    I will only address your preamble, for if the foundation is faulty then the whole building collapses. May the reader judge.

    The disciples' question regarding the Temple is provoked by our Lord Jesus' statement only minutes before in Matthew 23:37-38.

    37 "O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou that killest the prophets, and stonest them which are sent unto thee, how often would I have gathered thy children together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and ye would not!
    38 Behold, your house is left unto you desolate."


    To the Jew, the Temple is everything. It is the center of the Law for it was here that Israel were to gather three times a year to feast their tithe, it was here that the very God and Creator of the universe lived on earth, it was the one thing that made them different and superior to the nations around them. It was their trump card! While it stood, the Jews thought that their nation, the Law and the culture was safe. And it would have unsettled the disciples no end to hear that Jesus had declared the Temple, the same Temple He called, "My Father's House" in John Chapter 2, VACANT. It was unthinkable that the very God Who was Israel's hope, protection and source of blessing was GONE. It is no longer "My Father's House" but "YOUR house".

    So probably within an hour, the time it takes to leave the Temple and scale Mount Olives, the disconcerted disciples approached Him about the Temple. Our Lord's answer is short and poignant. The Temple, in the near future, would not have one stone left standing upon another. That ended that question.

    But before we proceed, we must settle the issue of which "generation" would suffer these things. Is it that group of Pharisees and citizens of Jerusalem of 30 AD? Or is it the TYPE of person generated starting from Adam's fallen loins? The Bible does use the length of a man's life to indicate a generation, like Israel would be in Egypt "four generations". But nowhere in the whole Bible does it FIX the length of time that a generation takes to appear and disappear. Adam was not "generated", but Seth, "generated" by Adam, lived 912 years. On the other end of the scale, Herod ordered the end of children under two years at the time of the birth of Jesus. And in between 912 years and less than two years for a lifetime of one "generated" we have any number of different times. Thus, to define the time of a generation in the Bible is pure "private interpretation" and not allowed.
    To understand what Jesus meant by "this generation" one has to understand what he said *in context.* In context Jesus spoke of the people alive in his own time. He had earlier explained that those alive in his time had done despicable things, and warrant the destruction of the temple. So "this generation" is unambiguous. It meant those alive in Jesus' time. It was a reference to his Jewish compatriots, both believers and unbelievers.

    And if your obscuration of the meaning of "this generation" is the basis of your argument, then indeed your foundation is not solid.

    Quote Originally Posted by Walls
    The "generation" that our LOrd Jesus alluded to was NOT the length of time a man lived, or even the present men who were alive. Our Lord sets the boundaries of that which Adam "generated" in Matthew 23:30-37. He apportions the GUILT of the murdered Abel and the murdered prophets to "this generation". They are all "generated" by a Viper, for Genesis 1:11-12 sets forth an immutable Law that everything with seed in itself will produce the same species. And Cain, inheriting the NATURE of Adam, killed Abel. Since this time the SAME "generation" has been at work killing God's messengers. Our Lord Jesus apportions the blame on "this generation", "That upon you may come all the righteous blood shed upon the earth"!

    It is abundantly clear that "generation" in the Olivet discourse is not a specific group of people living then, but the TYPE of person "generated" with the serpentine nature. This in turn disallows any "pegging" of years to the events predicted in the Olivet Discourse.

    Be that as it may, to continue, our Lord Jesus had addressed another point equally disturbing. In Matthew 23:39 our Lord concluded His dialogue with the Jews with,

    "For I say unto you, Ye shall not see me henceforth, till ye shall say, Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord."

    So the next, and NEW question does NOT address the Temple. It addresses the COMING of the Lord AGAIN when the Jews will not reject Him but embrace Him. So the question of the disciples is now in Matthew 24:3;

    "And as he sat upon the mount of Olives, the disciples came unto him privately, saying, Tell us,
    1. when shall these things be?
    2. and what shall be the sign of thy coming,
    3. and what shall be the sign of the end of the AGE ("aion" - Gk.)?"


    What follows up to and including verse 31 PERTAIN TO THINGS JEWISH UNTIL CHRIST BURSTS FORTH FROM THE CLOUDS OVER MOUNT OLIVES! An inspection of the things and events of verses 4 - 31 show all things Jewish that will come to pass between the destruction of the Temple and the "gathering" of Israel as predicted by Ezekiel 37.
    1. False Christ's are a Jewish problem. The world is indifferent to Christ and false Christs, and the Church know Who and where Jesus Christ is
    2. Wars worldwide - a phenomena of all the years till Christ Comes
    3. Persecution and hate of the Jews. Even today their synagogues are bombed in the most civilized countries
    4. False Prophets. Our Lord predicted that the Jewish Leaders would be the blind leading the blind
    5. There would be a Remnant, like Elijah's time, who would "endure till the end" (Deut.30:1-5, Rev.7:1-8)
    6. "This gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come" sets the time boundaries of Israel's chastisement
    7. "The abomination of desolation" is a Jewish plight predicted by Daniel, a Jewish prophet, to "Daniel's People (the Jews), stand in a Jewish holy place
    8. Judaea is the are surrounding Jerusalem . the Jewish Holy City
    9. The Sabbath is peculiar to Jewish Law
    10. The Great Tribulation - Jacob's Trouble
    11. Then THE false Christ - the Beast coming with lying wonders to be embraced by the Jews as per Daniel Chapter 9
    12. Then comes a time of the "carcase" a killing ground - Armageddon - 70 miles west of Jerusalem
    13. Then the "sign" of the Son of man. A "sign" is for the Jews (1st Cor.1.22). The Church gets no "signs". They are already looking to heaven for their Savior by FAITH (Phil.3:20)
    14. The "Tribes of the Land" is Israel. The Church is "those of the heavenly calling"
    15. Only Israel is scattered to the "four winds" an so only Israel gathered from the "four winds" (Zech.2:6; Jer.49:36; Ezek.37:9)

    The Olivet Discourse in Matthew 24:4-31 covers the period from the destruction of the Temple until Christ sends His angels to gather Israel from the diaspora. IT CONCERNs THE JEWS. Except for the "preaching of the gospel of the Kingdom", the CHURCH IS NOT ALLUDED TO IN THIS PORTION OF SCRIPTURE. This part of the Olivet Discourse PERTAINS TO ISRAEL IN CHASTISEMENT which ends with the coming of their Messiah from the clouds and their gathering from dispersion.
    You're making some significant mistakes. Many of these signs were present in the generation that saw the buildup to 70 AD. One sign, namely the preaching of the gospel, only began in that generation, and continues until the end of the age. Another sign merely began after 70 AD, and this was the Jewish Diaspora, including both Christian persecution and Jewish expulsion into the nations.

    So we're talking about 2 sets of signs, and not just 1. The signs Jesus firstly addressed had to do with his main subject, the destruction of the temple. All the signs leading up to the temple's destruction would happen in Jesus' generation. But there were signs that continued or followed, all the way up until the coming of Christ. These were given in response to the Disciples' question about how the temple's destruction related to the coming of the Kingdom.

    None of these signs identified the AoD as the Antichrist, nor identified the Great Tribulation of the Jews as the 3.5 year reign of Antichrist. We do know that these things will happen at the end of the age, and the book of Revelation addresses those things.

    However, Jesus' primary subject had been the destruction of the temple. And his immediate concern was for his own generation--the literal generation of Jews in which he lived. They had to prepare their hearts for the approaching judgment of God in 70 AD, so that they could escape the wrath of God. Their escape would primarily be determined by a repentant heart. But upon repenting they were given a mission--a mission which required that they survive 70 AD. Therefore, Jesus told them to pursue escape at the proper time, when the Roman Army gathers at Jerusalem.

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    Re: Brief commentary on Matt 24

    Quote Originally Posted by randyk View Post
    To understand what Jesus meant by "this generation" one has to understand what he said *in context.* In context Jesus spoke of the people alive in his own time. He had earlier explained that those alive in his time had done despicable things, and warrant the destruction of the temple. So "this generation" is unambiguous. It meant those alive in Jesus' time. It was a reference to his Jewish compatriots, both believers and unbelievers.

    And if your obscuration of the meaning of "this generation" is the basis of your argument, then indeed your foundation is not solid.



    You're making some significant mistakes. Many of these signs were present in the generation that saw the buildup to 70 AD. One sign, namely the preaching of the gospel, only began in that generation, and continues until the end of the age. Another sign merely began after 70 AD, and this was the Jewish Diaspora, including both Christian persecution and Jewish expulsion into the nations.

    So we're talking about 2 sets of signs, and not just 1. The signs Jesus firstly addressed had to do with his main subject, the destruction of the temple. All the signs leading up to the temple's destruction would happen in Jesus' generation. But there were signs that continued or followed, all the way up until the coming of Christ. These were given in response to the Disciples' question about how the temple's destruction related to the coming of the Kingdom.

    None of these signs identified the AoD as the Antichrist, nor identified the Great Tribulation of the Jews as the 3.5 year reign of Antichrist. We do know that these things will happen at the end of the age, and the book of Revelation addresses those things.

    However, Jesus' primary subject had been the destruction of the temple. And his immediate concern was for his own generation--the literal generation of Jews in which he lived. They had to prepare their hearts for the approaching judgment of God in 70 AD, so that they could escape the wrath of God. Their escape would primarily be determined by a repentant heart. But upon repenting they were given a mission--a mission which required that they survive 70 AD. Therefore, Jesus told them to pursue escape at the proper time, when the Roman Army gathers at Jerusalem.
    You have objected, which is your right. But you neither showed any argument of mine incorrect, nor did you give one scripture for your thesis. To admit that all men alive at the time of the discourse of Matthew 24:1-31 saw 70 AD, is absolutely fallacious. Starting with the two criminals killed with Jesus, through the murder of Stephen and James and Paul (ca.68 AD), through the wars, famines and pestilences, and through the process of preaching the gospel to all nations, your claim is not a single person "passed". If one man died "THIS generation" did NOT see 70 AD. Added to this, the men alive at that time who were 70 years old, would ALL have been alive at 110 years old in 70 AD. C'mon brother ...

    I'll let my posting stand.

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    Re: Brief commentary on Matt 24

    Quote Originally Posted by ForHisglory View Post


    Nope, the PRIMARY purpose for the Discourse is NOT a direct answer to either of these questions.
    The PRIMARY purpose was to prepare the Disciples for what was to come UNTIL Jesus was to return.
    That time frame is mainly bracketed by these two questions.
    The destruction of the temple being the START, and the sign of His coming with the end of the age being the END.
    What then follows is details covering many things.

    Exactly! I 100% agree with you. How anyone can not see this, is mind boggling. That means this generation shall not pass, till all these things are fulfilled, that those things include the destruction of the temple in the the first century, plus everything that is to happen until He returns. That would clearly be the definition of all these things, IOW everything Jesus predicted in the Discourse, including the destruction of the temple, have to get fulfilled before this generation passes. And that includes the times of the Gentiles as well, which were clearly not fulfilled during the generation Jesus was speaking to at the time since we are obviously in the times of the Gentiles still, as we speak.

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    Re: Brief commentary on Matt 24

    Quote Originally Posted by Walls View Post
    You have objected, which is your right. But you neither showed any argument of mine incorrect, nor did you give one scripture for your thesis. To admit that all men alive at the time of the discourse of Matthew 24:1-31 saw 70 AD, is absolutely fallacious. Starting with the two criminals killed with Jesus, through the murder of Stephen and James and Paul (ca.68 AD), through the wars, famines and pestilences, and through the process of preaching the gospel to all nations, your claim is not a single person "passed". If one man died "THIS generation" did NOT see 70 AD. Added to this, the men alive at that time who were 70 years old, would ALL have been alive at 110 years old in 70 AD. C'mon brother ...

    I'll let my posting stand.
    To add to what you said, there is another problem as well. If Jesus was speaking to various age groups at the time, where some were younger, some were older, and some were even older, etc, these would not all be of the same generation. So which generation was He meaning then if Randy's interpretation of this generation is supposed to be correct? If there were some in His audience that were 65 or older at the time, does anyone really think any of these might still be alive 40 years later? If this generation cannot pass, till all be fulfilled, they would have to still be alive 40 years later, or we have to conclude Jesus lied if they are not.

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    Re: Brief commentary on Matt 24

    Quote Originally Posted by ForHisglory View Post
    This is NOT pretty much what the ECFs believed. They didn't have a uniform teaching. Different ECFs stating different things.
    This is more as you say YOUR stitching together of various ECF ideas to make into one. Yet NOT one ECF held your view.
    Brother, why do you keep making the same argument when this has already been reasonably addressed? I've said that the issue is *not* whether there was complete agreement on all of the details of the AoD, but rather, on the fact "all these things" were fulfilled in the literal generation of Jesus! You continue to bring up various differences in how the Church Fathers approached this issue. But the differences are not relevant to my point. The vast majority of them agreed that the AoD took place in Jesus' literal generation, in the time frame between Jesus' death and the destruction of Jerusalem by the Romans.

    Quote Originally Posted by ForHisglory
    Nope, the PRIMARY purpose for the Discourse is NOT a direct answer to either of these questions.
    The PRIMARY purpose was to prepare the Disciples for what was to come UNTIL Jesus was to return.
    That time frame is mainly bracketed by these two questions.
    The destruction of the temple being the START, and the sign of His coming with the end of the age being the END.
    What then follows is details covering many things.
    This is why we disagree on how the Church Fathers viewed the Olivet Discourse. You approach these with more modern popular questions--questions associated with modern futurism. Today, Christians are looking for signs by which to pinpoint the return of Christ. We prepare by a preparation based on anticipation and timing.

    But we were told by Jesus not to do this. Preparation for Jesus' Coming is not by anticipating the timing of any event, nor by recognition of a sequence of prophetic events. In other words, it is not by "crystal ball reading."

    Rather, we prepare for Jesus' Coming by *always* remaining spiritually right with God. In this way we will always be ready for the Kingdom. The signs were just things to look out for, to avoid pitfalls. Our main focus is to help get others spiritually ready, and not to get them into identifying who the Antichrist is, for example.

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    Re: Brief commentary on Matt 24

    Quote Originally Posted by Walls View Post
    You have objected, which is your right. But you neither showed any argument of mine incorrect, nor did you give one scripture for your thesis. To admit that all men alive at the time of the discourse of Matthew 24:1-31 saw 70 AD, is absolutely fallacious. Starting with the two criminals killed with Jesus, through the murder of Stephen and James and Paul (ca.68 AD), through the wars, famines and pestilences, and through the process of preaching the gospel to all nations, your claim is not a single person "passed". If one man died "THIS generation" did NOT see 70 AD. Added to this, the men alive at that time who were 70 years old, would ALL have been alive at 110 years old in 70 AD. C'mon brother ...

    I'll let my posting stand.
    I did *not* say that *all* men alive in the time of Jesus would be alive in 70 AD! Furthermore, this is not my "thesis." This is the view the majority of the Church Fathers took. It is also a common view among scholars today.

    On the other hand, there is a popular eschatology that wants to read back into these prophecies "eschatology for today." That's much more exciting than historical fulfillment!

    As to proving your position wrong, I prefer to see this as an attempt to direct you back to what the Church Fathers believed, rather than put myself out there and "prove you wrong." I've been wrong countless times. I'm trying to get us all to where God would have us to be.

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    Re: Brief commentary on Matt 24

    Quote Originally Posted by randyk View Post
    Brother, why do you keep making the same argument when this has already been reasonably addressed? I've said that the issue is *not* whether there was complete agreement on all of the details of the AoD, but rather, on the fact "all these things" were fulfilled in the literal generation of Jesus! You continue to bring up various differences in how the Church Fathers approached this issue. But the differences are not relevant to my point. The vast majority of them agreed that the AoD took place in Jesus' literal generation, in the time frame between Jesus' death and the destruction of Jerusalem by the Romans.
    Possibly because you have still failed to address it and instead continued to claim something.
    "All these things" were certainly NOT all fulfilled and NOT a SINGLE ECF said they were.
    The differences are CRUCIAL to what you say as you claim the majority of the ECFs said something which they did not.
    I don;t really know how to get through to you.
    There is NOTHING in the ECFs supporting you and yet you continue to claim as IF this is a majority thing.

    This is why we disagree on how the Church Fathers viewed the Olivet Discourse. You approach these with more modern popular questions--questions associated with modern futurism. Today, Christians are looking for signs by which to pinpoint the return of Christ. We prepare by a preparation based on anticipation and timing.
    Not really, the ECFs were looking to understand what it meant.
    I am not associated with modern futurism.

    But we were told by Jesus not to do this. Preparation for Jesus' Coming is not by anticipating the timing of any event, nor by recognition of a sequence of prophetic events. In other words, it is not by "crystal ball reading."
    Actually you are wrong here as the OD was specifically about saying look out for this, and then when you see this don't think it is that, and avoid this when you see iyt and you will know the reality because it will be like this.
    Revelation gives more detail and the writings of Paul also more.
    None of this is crystal ball gazing, but about taking His words seriously and appropriately.

    Rather, we prepare for Jesus' Coming by *always* remaining spiritually right with God. In this way we will always be ready for the Kingdom. The signs were just things to look out for, to avoid pitfalls. Our main focus is to help get others spiritually ready, and not to get them into identifying who the Antichrist is, for example.
    Pitfalls need to be understood, such as tribulation which is to come. However you deny the GT, so you would not prepare anyone for this pitfall.

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    Re: Brief commentary on Matt 24

    Quote Originally Posted by ForHisglory View Post
    Possibly because you have still failed to address it and instead continued to claim something.
    "All these things" were certainly NOT all fulfilled and NOT a SINGLE ECF said they were.
    The differences are CRUCIAL to what you say as you claim the majority of the ECFs said something which they did not.
    I don;t really know how to get through to you.
    There is NOTHING in the ECFs supporting you and yet you continue to claim as IF this is a majority thing.


    Not really, the ECFs were looking to understand what it meant.
    I am not associated with modern futurism.


    Actually you are wrong here as the OD was specifically about saying look out for this, and then when you see this don't think it is that, and avoid this when you see iyt and you will know the reality because it will be like this.
    Revelation gives more detail and the writings of Paul also more.
    None of this is crystal ball gazing, but about taking His words seriously and appropriately.


    Pitfalls need to be understood, such as tribulation which is to come. However you deny the GT, so you would not prepare anyone for this pitfall.
    Please don't misrepresent my views! Others read what you say. I certainly believe in the Great Tribulation. I just define it differently than you apparently do.

    Since I've already addressed all of your points, there is nothing more I need to say. For anybody interested, I did post a number of quotes from the Church Fathers on this subject. The majority saw the fulfillment of the "temple desolation" as taking place in Jesus' generation, in the time period from Jesus' death to the destruction of the temple, roughly. And that's because they connected the prophecy of the 70 Weeks with the Olivet Discourse. Jesus died in the 70th Week, and there followed the destruction of the temple, the Abomination of Desolation. This happened in 70 AD. This is precisely how most of the Church Fathers viewed it, as anybody can see reading these quotes. Only Irenaeus and Hippolytus seemed to take it differently. Hippolytus followed what Irenaeus believed.

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