Whom Say Ye That I Am?
Just before this chapter, we have the account of the Lord weeping over Jerusalem. The Jews House (no longer My Father's House) is left unto them desolate (without the presence of God). And the Jews are never to see Him again till they repent.
The chapter begins with the prophecy of the destruction of the city by Titus. He does not say when. Paul says that it might have been avoided (Romans 10:9-10). But Israel would not confess Jesus as their Messiah or believe that God raised Him from the dead. So their calamity befell them.
The disciples have 3 questions to ask;
1. When shall these things happen?
2. What will be the sign of the coming?
3. What the sign of the ending of the age?
These questions are answered in reverse order. Rumors of wars, wars, and even false Christs will not mark the end of the age. But there will be upheavals in nature and a great tribulation before the end of the age. The days will be shortened.
The sign of His coming is not seen till after the tribulation. This precludes any thought of a pre-tribulation coming as many teach. The coming will not be in secret, but as plain as the lightning when it flashes across the heavens. It is plainly stated that if anyone says that He has come (1843, 1844, 1914 or any other date) that person is a liar and not to believe it.
And He finally says that it might be that this particular generation might not pass away, till these things were fulfilled. It was entirely possible if Israel would only repent. And the prophecy in Daniel 9 tells us that the Lord was to come in 85 A.D. to set up His kingdom. But Israe1 did not repent, so the Lord did not come, and has not come yet.
But they are to watch the prophetic events, even as they watch the fig tree, to tell the season.
He also tells them that things will be going on as usual on the earth when He comes. He will not be expected any more than the flood was expected in the days of Noah. It was business as usual.
Those in the ark were preserved through the flood, but the others were taken away by the flood. And so in that day the tares will be taken away first, and then the harvest. So the tares will be taken from the midst as two grinding at the mill and one taken or two in the field and one taken. The other is left for it is the wheat and will be part of the harvest. But the tares are to be burned.
It is also made plain in that chapter that when the Lord does come, there will be a judgment of the servants who think He is going to delay His coming. The next chapter tells how the nations that remain (no resurrection mentioned here) will be judged and which will remain and which will not remain to go on into the great millennial kingdom.
The reader may wish to compare the events in Matt 24 with the opening of the seals in Revelation 6. Also there is more information in Daniel 12. Note the trump that is sounded which marks the end of the great tribulation and the coming of the King. See 1 Cor 15:52; 1 Thes 4:16; and Rev 11:15-19.
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