A CLOSE LOOK AT MT. 24 & 25 (part 1)


Most of lesson this morning and this evening will focus on Matthew 24 because it one of the most misunderstood chapters in the Bible. Many in the religious world think this chapter teaches the rapture theory because they believe there are signs by which we can known when Jesus is about to return and of course they believe that those signs are happening now and that Jesus is going to return within our generation.


Before we begin looking at Mtt. 24, I want to give you some basic guidelines that you should follow in order to figure what is going on in any given chapter within the Bible.


1. One of the most important things you must do is to look at the context so you can know what is going on. This means you need to look at the previous chapter as it may give you great insight to what is going on

2. Also, it important to examine any other verses or parallel accounts of the contents of the chapter you want to examine.

3When you are examining a more difficult chapter try and find verses within that chapter that might help you unlock the true meaning of that chapter.


I will be using these basic guidelines to show what Mat. 24 teaches.


So, the first thing we need to do is to find out what is going on in Mat. 23. In this chapter, Jesus is in Jerusalem at the temple and He begins to speak the people there, and He starts talking about the Pharisees and the Scribes and the sins they are guilty of. Let’s read last part of this chapter.


Matthew 23:32 "Fill up, then, the measure of your fathers' guilt.  33 "Serpents, brood of vipers! How can you escape the condemnation of hell?  34 "Therefore, indeed, I send you prophets, wise men, and scribes: some of them you will kill and crucify, and some of them you will scourge in your synagogues and persecute from city to city,  35 "that on you may come all the righteous blood shed on the earth, from the blood of righteous Abel to the blood of Zechariah, son of Berechiah, whom you murdered between the temple and the altar.  36 "Assuredly, I say to you, all these things will come upon this generation.  37 " O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the one who kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to her! How often I wanted to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you were not willing!  38 "See! Your house is left to you desolate;  


Jesus is makes it clear that these Jews had rejected Him and that the blood of the prophets would be on their head. He is pronouncing a judgment on these Jews and He tells them that this judgment will happen to this generation and that God has left their house desolate. In other words, God’s presence was no longer in the temple. This judgment Jesus is talking about was the destruction of Jerusalem in A.D. 70, which happened 40 years after He made this statement and it falls inline with the timeline of a generation because a generation is considered to be 30 to 40 years in length.


With this in mind, I want to show what I believe to be a key verse in understanding Mt. 24.


Matthew 24:34 "Assuredly, I say to you, this generation will by no means pass away till all these things take place.


No matter how you decided to explain Mt. 24, Jesus makes it easy for us to see that the events described before verse 34 would happen in that generation. Just as we saw at the end of Mt. 23, we can see that those events in those verses were to occur sometime within a 30 to 40 year span.


Those that teach the rapture theory try to change the meaning of generation in our key verse to simply denote the Jewish race. In other words, they have Jesus saying that the Jewish race will not pass away until all these things take place. This is how they justify stretching out the time span of when these signs are to occur. But even they will admit that the word generation is rarely used to mean race. Instead, the word generation is almost always defined as,


“the sum total of those born at the same time, expanded to include all those living at a given time”


In fact, out of the 37 times this word is used in the NT, I could not find where it was ever used to refer to a race. Let me give you an example of what I am talking about.


Matthew 1:17 So all the generations from Abraham to David are fourteen generations;


Obviously, the word generation is talking about a time span and not a race because this verse wouldn’t make any sense if you substituted the word generation with the word race. Please keep this in mind as we begin to examine Mt. 24. My goal is to show you that Mt. 24 talk about 2 different events. Verses 1 – 34 talk about the destruction of Jerusalem and verse 36 – 51 talk about Jesus second coming when the end of world will occur.


Matthew 24:1 Then Jesus went out and departed from the temple, and His disciples came up to show Him the buildings of the temple.  2 And Jesus said to them, "Do you not see all these things? Assuredly, I say to you, not one stone shall be left here upon another, that shall not be thrown down."


Verse 3 teaches us that when Jesus departed from the temple, He went to the Mount of Olives opposite of the temple. This was a mountain that had many olive trees on it and it gave you good view of the city of Jerusalem over it walls. Then events that are to take place in Mt. 24 are also described Now I want to point out that the events that take place in this chapter are also recorded in Mark 13 and Luke 21. Each of these accounts have additional information that the others don’t,  so I will be referring to these other accounts to give us a complete picture.


We learn that Jesus’ disciples began to show Jesus the marvelous buildings of temple of Jerusalem and how beautiful they are, but Jesus tells them something that  no doubt shocks them because He lets them know that all these glorious buildings they are looking at are going to be destroyed and not one stone will remain on top of another.


This was an amazing statement because at this point, they were still building on the temple area which by they way they didn’t finish until A.D. 64, and Jerusalem was at a time of peace, yet Jesus said it would be destroyed and would happen in their generation just as stated in Mt. 23. Immediately, His disciples asked Him some question about what he just said. I want to show the questions asked in each account.


In Matthew’s account we see 3 questions.


Matthew 24:3  "Tell us, when will these things be? And what will be the sign of Your coming, and of the end of the age?" 


Luke account shows 2 questions.


Luke 21:7 So they asked Him, saying, "Teacher, but when will these things be? And what sign will there be when these things are about to take place?"


Mark’s account also shows 2 questions


Mark 13:4 "Tell us, when will these things be? And what will be the sign when all these things will be fulfilled?"


This is why it is important that we look at the parallel accounts in the gospels. Because when we look at just one, we don’t get the complete picture. However, when we look at all them then together, then we will get the complete picture. For example, Luke’s and Mark’s accounts only record two questions, which deal with destruction of Jerusalem. They want to know when the destruction of Jerusalem will happen and what will be the signs that show its going to happen?


In Mt. 24, they also want to know what will be the sign of your coming and of the end of the age? Some believe these questions also refer to the destruction of Jerusalem as well. To be fair, based on the constant confusion of Jesus’ disciples, it is possible that they may have thought that Jesus’ coming and the end of the world would happen at the same time as the destruction of Jerusalem. Throughout Jesus’ ministry, they had been confused on many matters. Jesus taught them multiple times about His death and resurrection, yet in John 20: 9, after Jesus death on the cross, they still didn’t understand that He must be raised from the dead.


In Mt. 13, Jesus spoke several parable about the condition of a person’s heart, the importance and strength of God’s kingdom, and He even gave them 2 different parables about the end of the world or the end of the age, and Jesus even asked them if they understood what He was talking about, and they all said “yes we understand” in verse 51. Yet, when we come to Acts 1:6, just before Jesus is about to ascend into heaven, His disciples want to know when will He will restore the kingdom to Israel?


Once again we can see that they were still looking for a physical kingdom instead of spiritual one. So, this is why I say it is certainly possible that they thought the destruction of Jerusalem and the end would occur at the same time.


However, it does not really matter what they were thinking or if they confused because Jesus is going answer these questions and help us see that we have the destruction of Jerusalem being discussed and the end of the world be discussed and that they will happen at different times.  


The latter part of their question about the end of the age/world is defiantly talking about the end of time here on earth.  The reason I say this is because every time this word is used in the NT, it either refers to the world itself or to time. Now the reason I point this out is because some try to say they wanted to know when the end of the Jewish age would happen instead of the end of the world. Again, as far I could find, this word is never used to refer to the Jewish nation.


In verse 4 – 14, Jesus warns His disciples not to be fooled by the false signs they would experience before the destruction of Jerusalem would occur.


Matthew 24:4 And Jesus answered and said to them: "Take heed that no one deceives you.  5 "For many will come in My name, saying, 'I am the Christ,' and will deceive many.


Jesus says there will be many people who will come His name trying to say they are the Messiah. The Bible tells us in Acts 5:35-37 that some men had claimed to be something great and led some people away to a slaughter, and historians like Josephus also commented on how false messiah’s were stepping up during those days.


Matthew 24:6 "And you will hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not troubled; for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet.  7 "For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. And there will be famines, pestilences, and earthquakes in various places.  8 "All these are the beginning of sorrows.   


Again these are things are going to take place before the destruction of Jerusalem and these are not signs the mark the end of Jerusalem, but instead they mark the beginning of sorrows. Jesus tells His disciples not to be troubled or bothered by these things because these signs are just the beginning and are not the actually signs that will show that the destruction of Jerusalem is about to happen.


Those who teach the rapture theory think these signs mentioned are the signs we are to look for before Jesus comes again, but these kinds of signs have been happening throughout history. It is also note worthy to point out that our text does not say that these signs will increase during this time but they will simply be happening.  Please note the following,


Vincent notes that between this prophecy by Jesus in 30 A.D. and the destruction of Jerusalem there was an earthquake in Crete in 46-47 A.D. at Rome in 51 A.D. at Apamaia in Phrygia in 60 A.D and at Campania in 41 -54 A.D. He also note 4 famines during the reign of Claudius in 41 – 54 A.D. One of these famines are taught in Acts 11:28. Also an early writer named Tacitus (Annals xvi. 10-13) describes hurricanes and storms in Campania in A.D. 65.


There are more events I could list but these are sufficient enough to show that they had those things happening before the destruction of Jerusalem. While we can certainly see some of these same signs happening today, Jesus did not have or time in mind because He is referring to what would happen during the time leading up to the destruction of Jerusalem in A.D. 70.


Matthew 24:9 "Then they will deliver you up to tribulation and kill you, and you will be hated by all nations for My name's sake. 


The Book of Acts reveals the fulfillment of this prediction. The apostles were beaten and put in prison (Acts 4--5), Stephen was stoned to death (Acts 6--7), there was a great persecution against the church (Acts 8--9), and James was beheaded (Acts 12:1-2) just to name a few.


Now Mark adds this in his account,


Mark 13:11 "But when they arrest you and deliver you up, do not worry beforehand, or premeditate what you will speak. But whatever is given you in that hour, speak that; for it is not you who speak, but the Holy Spirit.


This certainly limits these events that were going to happen to the first century because when they were arrested the Holy Spirit would give them the words by which to speak. Now this would be a study all with in itself, but we know that 1 Cor. 13 and Eph. 4, and other passages make it clear the miraculous speaking of tongues and the like were limited to the 1st century because only the apostles had the ability to impart miraculous gifts by the laying on of their hands and so this cannot happen today even though there are some who claim  they can speak by means of the Holy Spirit or perform miracles today.


Matthew 24:10 "And then many will be offended, will betray one another, and will hate one another.  11 "Then many false prophets will rise up and deceive many.  12 "And because lawlessness will abound, the love of many will grow cold.  13 "But he who endures to the end shall be saved.


 Again, these are things that happened before the destruction of Jerusalem, and we can see these events taking place in Scripture such as 2 Tim 4:10, 16. Just like rumor of wars and earthquakes, betrayal and lawlessness continues to abound today.


"Tacitus, the Roman historian, records, `that several Christians at first were apprehended, and then by their discovery, a multitude of others were convicted, and cruelly put to death, with derision and insult!'"


Now when a person get to verse 13, they might want to apply that to salvation in heaven and it certainly is true that if we endure as Christians to the end of our lives, we will be saved. But, based on context, I do not believe this verse is talking about salvation of the soul. Luke’s account adds that not one hair of their head would be lost (Lk. 21:18). Since Jesus goes on from this verse and tells His disciples what they can do to escape the destruction that is going to take place, I believe He saying that those who endure and don’t allow themselves to be tricked by the false signs and will take heed to the real signs that mark the destruction of Jerusalem will not lose their physical lives.  


Josephus and others back this historical fact up because not one Christian was recorded of losing their life during the destruction of Jerusalem. In fact, many of the Christians of that time went to Pella when the destruction of Jerusalem was starting to happen according to the early writer Eusebius.


Matthew 24:14 "And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in all the world as a witness to all the nations, and then the end will come.


This is another important verse because whatever the end is that these verses have been talking about cannot occur until the gospel is preached in all the world as a witness to all the nations. Those who teach the rapture theory would say that this has not happened. but consider what the Bible says,


Colossians 1:5 because of the hope which is laid up for you in heaven, of which you heard before in the word of the truth of the gospel,  6 which has come to you, as it has also in all the world,


Colossians 1:23 if indeed you continue in the faith, grounded and steadfast, and are not moved away from the hope of the gospel which you heard, which was preached to every creature under heaven, of which I, Paul, became a minister.


Also Rom 10:18 and 16:26 all show that the gospel had indeed been preached to all the world. The Book of Colossian was written around 61 -63 A.D and the book of Romans was written around 57-58 A.D., which clearly shows that the gospel had be preached to all the world before the destruction of Jerusalem in A.D. 70 .So,  we can see that end Jesus is talking about is the destruction of Jerusalem. All these things Jesus has been talking about so far would happen before the destruction of Jerusalem, but now, Jesus is going to tell H is disciples the real signs that they could look for to know without a doubt that the destruction of Jerusalem was about to happen.


Matthew 24:15 " Therefore when you see the 'abomination of desolation,' spoken of by Daniel the prophet, standing in the holy place" (whoever reads, let him understand),  


The word abomination means detestable things such as idolatry, and the word desolation means destruction. Daniel spoke of this event during his day in Daniel 9, 11, and 12. In all 3 chapters abomination of desolation is used to describe the defilement of the temple.

But the specific prophecy Jesus is talking about has to do with 70 weeks of Daniel in Chapter 9: 24- 27. I wish we had time to take a look at more of the details from Daniel, but if you read them on your own and consider what I have been talking about in this lesson I think it will be easy for you to see him prophesying of Jesus and the destruction of Jerusalem.


Luke’s account shows us exactly what Jesus has in mind about the abomination of desolation that they could see and know that Jerusalem was going to be destroyed.


Luke 21:20  But when you see Jerusalem surrounded by armies, then know that its desolation is near.


Also, earlier in the book of Luke Jesus makes the same prediction.


Luke 19:41 Now as He drew near, He saw the city and wept over it,  42 saying, "If you had known, even you, especially in this your day, the things that make for your peace! But now they are hidden from your eyes.  43 "For days will come upon you when your enemies will build an embankment around you, surround you and close you in on every side,  44 "and level you, and your children within you, to the ground; and they will not leave in you one stone upon another, because you did not know the time of your visitation."


So without a doubt, the abomination of desolation was the Roman army lead by Titus who did this very thing in A.D. 70 which lead to the destruction of Jerusalem where they did not leave one stone on top of another. Even some of the Jews of that day understood that the destruction of A.D. 70 was that which Daniel prophesied of. Please note what Josephus wrote who was an eyewitnesses of these events:


In the very same manner Daniel also wrote concerning the Roman Government, and that our country should be made desolate by them. (Josephus, Antiquities of the Jews, 10:11:7)


And now the Romans, upon the flight of the seditious (sah-dish-us) into the city, and upon the burning of the holy house itself, and of all the buildings lying round about it, brought their ensigns to the temple, and set them over against its eastern gate; and there did offer sacrifices to them, and there did they make Titus imperator. (imp-ar-tor) (Josephus, War of the Jews, 6:6:1)


I believe the evidence overwhelmingly proves that Jesus is taking about the destruction of Jerusalem and not some future event that is suppose to place sometime in our lifetime.


Our next verses that follow will continue to show that Jesus is talking about a local event that would only apply to the people at Jerusalem.


Matthew 24:15 Therefore when you see the 'abomination of desolation,' spoken of by Daniel the prophet, standing in the holy place" (whoever reads, let him understand),  16 "then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains.  17 "Let him who is on the housetop not go down to take anything out of his house.  18 "And let him who is in the field not go back to get his clothes.  


Jesus is telling them that when they see the army on its way to surround Jerusalem don’t waste anytime get out of there. He tells them flee to mountains. Now think about it. Obvious this is not talking about the end of time because it wouldn’t matter where you ran you cannot escape the final punishment. So, it would be foolish to tell people to flee if this were describing the end of the world, but it makes perfect sense when we realize it is talking about the destruction of Jerusalem.


Verse 17 shows us that he is talking about those living then in Jerusalem because the houses in the city were side by side and they had flat roofs. This was common place that people spent time praying, sleeping, or socializing, so it would be possible for them to run from roof top to roof top to make their way to the gate to get out of the city. Also, those in the field were to abandon their possession and run when these armies came.


Matthew 24:19 "But woe to those who are pregnant and to those who are nursing babies in those days!  20 "And pray that your flight may not be in winter or on the Sabbath.     


Again this gives us more proof that Jesus is talking about the destruction of Jerusalem. It would be very difficult for those who were nursing to get out in time having to care for their babies. It would also be difficult to escape in the winter because of the cold and they would be big trouble if the siege happened on the Sabbath because on the Sabbath the gates would be shut. This had been done since the days of Nehemiah as recorded Nehemiah 13:19. This problem could only be relevant the city of Jerusalem and cannot be applied to any other city or to any other time period, which once again shows that these verse are talking about the destruction of Jerusalem.


Matthew 24:21 "For then there will be great tribulation, such as has not been since the beginning of the world until this time, no, nor ever shall be.  22 "And unless those days were shortened, no flesh would be saved; but for the elect's sake those days will be shortened.


At this point, I want to point out little bit of history. Starting in A.D 66. the Jews and Romans began to fight one another. Most believe the Zealots were the instigators of this struggle. Josephus in his book of the  war of Jews Book 2 chapter 19 tells about how the roman General Cestius surrounded Jerusalem in A.D. 66. but for no apparent reason left his siege of Jerusalem. This certainly would have been a wake up call for the Christians of that day remembering what Jesus had said. From A. D. 66, not only were the Roman fighting the Jews, the Jews were undergoing civil war. If you ever get a chance, I recommend that you read about these events in Josephus book because it is fascinating. From his book you can learn just how great the tribulation was during that time. When Titus came in A.D. 70, he came during the time of the Passover and the city was full to capacity of Jews who had traveled from afar to partake of the Passover and events surrounding it. They locked up the city when he came, but someone burned their food source in the city, which they could have survived on for a very long time, but now a great famine begins within the walls. Because of the civil war inside, the city’s dead bodies had begun to pile up within the temple area, which was abomination within itself. In a similar instance, as found in 2 Kings 6:24 -30, a women got so hungry that she did the unthinkable. She killed her baby and ate it. The Romans were crucifying around 500 Jews a day. After all was said in done 1,100,000 Jews were reported killed and 97,000 were captured.


This is an ugly scene, but it was just as Jesus said it would be. Again, it is also interesting to note that not one Christian is recorded as be put to death by the Romans during this siege in A.D. 70. Josephus also tells us that the temple was destroyed on the same day and month as Solomon’s temple was earlier in history.


One more interesting point is that when the temple caught fire the gold ran down through the stones of the temple and this is one reason the soldiers did not leave one stone unturned because they wanted to get all the gold they could. Here is where we see history and the Bible in perfect harmony.


Matthew 24:23 "Then if anyone says to you, 'Look, here is the Christ!' or 'There!' do not believe it.  24 "For false christs and false prophets will rise and show great signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect.  25 "See, I have told you beforehand.  26 "Therefore if they say to you, 'Look, He is in the desert!' do not go out; or 'Look, He is in the inner rooms!' do not believe it.  27 "For as the lightning comes from the east and flashes to the west, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be.


Jesus is re-emphasizing His point from earlier. He tells them, don’t be fooled by false Christ or false prophets because when I come, it will be like lighting that flashes across the sky. This shows that when Jesus comes everyone will know about it and it also show that it will happen suddenly.


 28 "For wherever the carcass is, there the eagles will be gathered together.


This a proverb. I believe the carcass is speaking the Jewish nation which was dead immorally and spiritually just as Jesus told them they were in Mat. 23. Now we all know birds of prey will be attracted by a dead carcass and they come in and devour it. This word eagle or vulture in some translation was used in the OT to describe a foreign nation coming against the Jewish nation for punishment."  (cf.  Deut. 28:49; Hos. 8:1; Hab. 1:8). So, This is talking about the Romans coming to devour the Jewish nation by destroying their city in A.D. 70.


We have covered a lot information this morning, and I hope you have found it helpful and that it has made things clearer for you, but there is much more to be said in our study, so I hope you come back tonight ready to listen and to think as we continue working our way through Matthew 24.







































A CLOSE LOOK AT MT. 24 & 25 (part 2)


If you were not here this morning, we began taking a close look at Mt. 24. we examined the first 28 verses. My may main goal is to show that this chapter is talking about the destruction of Jerusalem and it also talks about the end of the world.


Our next few verse can be very confusing when you simply read them because they were written a prophetic language known as Apocalyptic Language.


Matthew 24:29 " Immediately after the tribulation of those days the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light; the stars will fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken.


Now taking this literally makes a very scary scene. However, I will show that this is just a pronouncement of the destruction of Jerusalem. I will do this is by showing how this language has been used before in the OT to show the judgment and downfall of other nation.


First, let’s compare Isaiah’s prophecy of the downfall of Babylon.


Isaiah 13:10 For the stars of heaven and their constellations Will not give their light; The sun will be darkened in its going forth, And the moon will not cause its light to shine. See Isa. 13:19-20


Ezekiel talks about the downfall of Egypt.


Ezekiel 32:7 When I put out your light, I will cover the heavens, and make its stars dark; I will cover the sun with a cloud, And the moon shall not give her light.  8 All the bright lights of the heavens I will make dark over you, And bring darkness upon your land,' Says the Lord GOD.


Now using the whole council of God, we can see that our verse in Mt. is simply describing the downfall of the Jewish nation just as the this language was used to describe the downfall of these other nations. Also the word immediately shows that this was happening immediately after the tribulations of those days.


Matthew 24:30 "Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in heaven, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.


This is another verse that can be easily misunderstood as well. It is important to note that it does not say that Son of man will appear in heaven but that sign of the sign of the Son would appear. This sign of Jesus’ coming by way of judgment was done through the Roman army. Our verse in no way indicates that Jesus was literally going to come and this goes hand in with what Jesus told the Jews at His trial in,


Matthew 26:64  Jesus said to him, "It is as you said. Nevertheless, I say to you, hereafter you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of the Power, and coming on the clouds of heaven."


Here we have Jesus sitting and coming at the same time. This shows us that that Jesus would remain in heaven and that the destruction of Jerusalem was yet another sign showing that He was at the right hand of God with full power over His kingdom. Now this phrase coming on the clouds of heaven with power is another phrase that we can see used in OT on how the Lord would come against a nation by means of earthy force.


Isaiah 19:1 The burden against Egypt. Behold, the LORD rides on a swift cloud, And will come into Egypt; The idols of Egypt will totter at His presence, And the heart of Egypt will melt in its midst.  2 "I will set Egyptians against Egyptians; Everyone will fight against his brother, And everyone against his neighbor, City against city, kingdom against kingdom.  


Here we see the Lord was going to come into Egypt on swift cloud. But how did He come? Was it a literal coming? No, He came into Egypt by setting Egyptian against Egyptian and kingdom against kingdom. The Lord was the power behind this, but He did it from heaven. This is same thing that is meant in the book of Matthew. The Lord was the power behind the Roman army, but his coming on clouds was through the Roman army.


Matthew 24:31 "And He will send His angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they will gather together His elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.


Now if you were to read this verse by itself, it would be easy to think that this is talking about the 2nd coming. However, in context, in cannot be talking about that and this is why; it is important especial when looking at symbolic language to keep it in context. These types of symbols like the trumpet and the four winds are used in other places symbolically as well. The other difficulty with this verse has to do with the word angel because this word simply means messenger and it can mean a heavenly messenger or an earthy messenger.


But again, since the context of our verses has to with things on the earth, the most logical approach to this verse is that it is referring to God’s people or messengers taking the gospel throughout the world. The term four winds usually used to describe the entirety of the world.


If I am wrong and the word angel is referring to the heavenly messengers, then I would have to say this is simply stating that the God’s angels played some part in helping the Christians escape this siege and be gathered together at places of safety so that not one Christian died.


Whatever meaning you may apply to this passage, I am confident that it cannot mean the second coming of Jesus and the end of time especial when consider the next few verses.



Matthew 24:32 Now learn this parable from the fig tree: When its branch has already become tender and puts forth leaves, you know that summer is near.  33 "So you also, when you see all these things, know that it is near -- at the doors! 34 "Assuredly, I say to you, this generation will by no means pass away till all these things take place.


Jesus makes it easy for us to understand that all things He just said would happen in their lifetime in their generation. Just as you can look at tree the starts growing leaves, you can know that summer is near. In the same way, those living during that day could know without a doubt when the destruction of Jerusalem was near. Now 2 more points I want to make that ties all this together are the 2 phrases “these things” and “those days”


This is important because Jesus just said that all these things he just spoke about were to take place in their generation. Real quickly notice how this term is used over and over again,


Matthew 23:36  "Assuredly, I say to you, all these things will come upon this generation.


Matthew 24:2  "Do you not see all these things? Referring to the buildings of the temple.


Matthew 24:3  "Tell us, when will these things be?


Matthew 24:6  See that you are not troubled; for all these things must come to pass


Matthew 24:8 "All these are the beginning of sorrows.


Luke 21:26 "men's hearts failing them from fear and the expectation of those things which are coming on the earth


Luke 21:31 "So you also, when you see these things happening, know that the kingdom of God is near.


This shows without doubt that these signs had to take place in the 1st century and that these signs were all fulfilled in the 1st century and have absolutely nothing to do with the end of the world. Finally, our phrase “those days” is also used within these verse as well.


Matthew 24:19  19 "But woe to those who are pregnant and to those who are nursing babies in those days!


Matthew 24:22 "And unless those days were shortened, no flesh would be saved; but for the elect's sake those days will be shortened.


Matthew 24:29 " Immediately after the tribulation of those days the sun will be darkened …

Please remember that these things were to happen in their generation in those days.


Matthew 24:35 "Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will by no means pass away.


Jesus is just reaffirming that His words are truth and everything He said would come to pass. So far, only one topic has been answered by Jesus and that was when would Jerusalem be destroyed and what would be the signs.


Next, Jesus is going to answer the next topic, when would He come and bring an end to the world and what signs can they look for?


Matthew 24:36  But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, but My Father only.


Here a major transition from what Jesus had just been talking about and the word “but” show that now Jesus is talking about something completely different. I just pointed out that the previous verses were talking about those days plural and that there were signs of when those things were to take place. But notice, this verse is focusing on that day and hour. Jesus spoke many times to His disciples about that day,


Matthew 12:36  "But I say to you that for every idle word men may speak, they will give account of it in the day of judgment.


Matthew 10:15 "Assuredly, I say to you, it will be more tolerable for the land of Sodom and Gomorrah in the day of judgment than for that city!


John 12:48 "He who rejects Me, and does not receive My words, has that which judges him -- the word that I have spoken will judge him in the last day.


John 6:44 "No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him; and I will raise him up at the last day.


These are just a few verses out many that show that the final judgment and end of the world will happen on the last day. Also, Jesus points out that only the Father knows when that day will occur. The angels don’t know and Mark’s account tells us that Jesus doesn’t know (Mk. 13:32), So when someone tells you that they know when Jesus is coming again, you can know for sure that they are wrong because only the Father knows.


Matthew 24:37 "But as the days of Noah were, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be.  38 "For as in the days before the flood, they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark,  39 "and did not know until the flood came and took them all away, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be.


Again. we can see the Jesus is talking about something different here than before. Before there all kinds of tribulations and horrible things going on, but Jesus says when He comes, which is referring to His second coming, it is going to be like it was in Noah’s day. Everyone is going to be doing their own thing. They are going to be eating, drinking, and marrying. Notice this is peaceful setting and life is going on as normal. But just like the flood began unexpectedly and took the people so will be Jesus’ second coming. This is why Peter tells us,


2 Peter 3:10 But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night, in which the heavens will pass away with a great noise, and the elements will melt with fervent heat; both the earth and the works that are in it will be burned up.


Just like in Noah’s day, many have been warned that Jesus is going to come, but they fail to take heed to the warnings, which in the end will cost them their soul. Next, Jesus gives us an illustration:


Matthew 24:40 "Then two men will be in the field: one will be taken and the other left.  41 "Two women will be grinding at the mill: one will be taken and the other left.


Those who teach the rapture theory will say this shows the rapture of how one will be taken and one be left behind, but it does no such thing. Again, keeping things in context and using the whole council of God, we can know that just and the unjust will be raised at the same time on the same day.


John 5:28 "Do not marvel at this; for the hour is coming in which all who are in the graves will hear His voice  29 "and come forth -- those who have done good, to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil, to the resurrection of condemnation.


As Peter pointed out in 2 Pet. 3:10, the earth will be burned up on the day of the Lord, so there will be no place for someone one to be left behind on the earth. Jesus is just giving an illustration that life is going to be going as normal, but when He comes suddenly without any signs, those that are prepared and have lived a faithful live will be taken up to be with the Lord, but the unprepared will be left behind with all sinners who will be judged and spend eternity in hell.  


Matthew 24:42 "Watch therefore, for you do not know what hour your Lord is coming.  43 "But know this, that if the master of the house had known what hour the thief would come, he would have watched and not allowed his house to be broken into.  44 "Therefore you also be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect. 


One of Jesus’ main points we see expressed many times throughout Scripture is to watch and make sure you are ready for Lord at anytime. Once again, He emphasizing that there are no signs that will show when He will come again but we must always be ready for His return at any given hour.


Matthew 24:45 Who then is a faithful and wise servant, whom his master made ruler over his household, to give them food in due season?  46 "Blessed is that servant whom his master, when he comes, will find so doing.  47 "Assuredly, I say to you that he will make him ruler over all his goods.  48 "But if that evil servant says in his heart, 'My master is delaying his coming,'  49 "and begins to beat his fellow servants, and to eat and drink with the drunkards,  50 "the master of that servant will come on a day when he is not looking for him and at an hour that he is not aware of,  51 "and will cut him in two and appoint him his portion with the hypocrites. There shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.


Jesus drives His point home, but this time, He adds that a faithful servant is one that remains faithful until He comes again. Some will have the attitude that Jesus is not coming anytime soon so they will sow their wild oats, engage in all kinds of sin, and tell themselves they will get right with God later, but Jesus warns against this kind of behavior because no one knows when He will come again, and you certainly don’t want to be caught living in sin when He comes again or He will send us where the rest of the sinners will go where there is weeping and gnashing of teeth.


Jesus has answered His disciples questions. He taught them about the things that must take place before the destruction of Jerusalem, and He taught them the real signs that would bring about Jerusalem’s destruction, which involved the Roman army surrounding the city.  Then Jesus answered the question of when He would come and when the end of the world would come. He let them know that there are no signs leading up to His return and that He will come at any moment like a thief in the night.


As we have learned in this lesson, there is no room for false claims of those who teach the rapture theory from Mt. 24. So as you can see there is no room for the false claims that rapture theory teaches on Mat 24.


In Mat 25., Jesus expounds even more about his second coming and the end of the world and how important it is that we as Christians remain watchful and ready for Jesus’ return at any given time.


In Mat. 25:1 – 13, Jesus tells the parable of the Wise and foolish virgins. There were 10 virgins in all who were waiting for the bridegroom. 5 of them were prepared will full lamps the other 5 were unprepared as they had no oil for the lamps. Because the bridegroom was delayed in coming it was late, and 5 foolish virgins had to leave and try and find some oil for the lamps, but while they were gone the bridegroom came and the 5 prepared virgins were allowed to go into the wedding with him but the 5 foolish ones found themselves locked out from the wedding. Jesus concludes this parable by saying:


Matthew 25:13 "Watch therefore, for you know neither the day nor the hour in which the Son of Man is coming.


Again the idea is to be continual prepared like the wise virgins so that when Jesus comes you will be invited to be with Him heaven.


In a similar vein, Jesus gives another parable about the talents in verses 14 – 30. In this parable, He stresses the idea of Christians being faithful and using their ability they have for the Lord, and if they don’t use what they have been blessed with and do nothing, then they will not make it to heaven.


In the parable, 2 men take the talent their master gives them and they double it by the time their master comes again. But one man digs a hole and hides his talent and tries to give it back to his master and this was his response.


Matthew 25:26 "But his lord answered and said to him, 'You wicked and lazy servant, you knew that I reap where I have not sown, and gather where I have not scattered seed.  27 'So you ought to have deposited my money with the bankers, and at my coming I would have received back my own with interest.  28 'Therefore take the talent from him, and give it to him who has ten talents.  29 'For to everyone who has, more will be given, and he will have abundance; but from him who does not have, even what he has will be taken away.  30 'And cast the unprofitable servant into the outer darkness. There will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.'


This parable teaches us not be lazy servants of God or else we face the consequences and again this parable is dealing with the end of time because when our master comes back we will all stand before Him and be judged:


2 Corinthians 5:10 For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive the things done in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad.


 Finally, the rest of the chapter deals with what is going to take place when Jesus comes again. Lets us read these verses.


Matthew 25:31 When the Son of Man comes in His glory, and all the holy angels with Him, then He will sit on the throne of His glory.  32 "All the nations will be gathered before Him, and He will separate them one from another, as a shepherd divides his sheep from the goats.  33 "And He will set the sheep on His right hand, but the goats on the left.  34 "Then the King will say to those on His right hand, 'Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world:  35 'for I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in;  36 'I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me.'  37 "Then the righteous will answer Him, saying, 'Lord, when did we see You hungry and feed You, or thirsty and give You drink?  38 'When did we see You a stranger and take You in, or naked and clothe You?  39 'Or when did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?'  40 "And the King will answer and say to them, 'Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.'  41 "Then He will also say to those on the left hand, 'Depart from Me, you cursed, into the everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels:  42 'for I was hungry and you gave Me no food; I was thirsty and you gave Me no drink;  43 'I was a stranger and you did not take Me in, naked and you did not clothe Me, sick and in prison and you did not visit Me.'  44 "Then they also will answer Him, saying, 'Lord, when did we see You hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not minister to You?'  45 "Then He will answer them, saying, 'Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to Me.'  46 "And these will go away into everlasting punishment, but the righteous into eternal life."


Again, we are left with the picture of when Jesus returns that there will be a great separation between the sinner and the saint and this will happen at the same time because the righteous will spend eternity in heaven on that day and unrighteous will spend eternity in hell on that day.  


I hope this lesson today has been helpful and has brought some clarity to these often misunderstood chapters. I also hope I have shown you how the rapture theory is not true and cannot be found in the Mt. 24 or 25. As Christian, let us never forget to remain prepared for the coming of the Lord because whether it happens today or 10,000 years from now, we must always be ready so that we will be found faithful in the end.