Devotional Readings, Reflections on Israel

Matthew 24 – Reflections on the destruction of Jerusalem and the End of Days

I will try to limit my comments today. We will see how that works out.

I lean towards the interpretation of this chapter as revealing both the forthcoming destruction of Jerusalem to take place in 70 AD, and in the final return of Christ at the End of Days.
As for the 70 AD portion, Luke seems to make this clear…
Luke 21:24 And they shall fall by the edge of the sword, and shall be led away captive into all nations: and Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled.
Audio
You can look up the full chapter text in the KJV.
Hate for true Christians..
This theme is often unpreached today, but is well promised in the scriptures, and is part of Jesus’ own teaching.
We see it here…

Mat 24:9  Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall kill you: and ye shall be hated of all nations for my name’s sake.

Mat 24:10  And then shall many be offended, and shall betray one another, and shall hate one another.

As well as in John’s Gospel…

Joh 15:18  If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you.

Joh 15:19  If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you.

Joh 15:20  Remember the word that I said unto you, The servant is not greater than his lord. If they have persecuted me, they will also persecute you; if they have kept my saying, they will keep yours also.

Joh 15:21  But all these things will they do unto you for my name’s sake, because they know not him that sent me.

Joh 15:22  If I had not come and spoken unto them, they had not had sin: but now they have no cloke for their sin.

Joh 15:23  He that hateth me hateth my Father also.

Joh 15:24  If I had not done among them the works which none other man did, they had not had sin: but now have they both seen and hated both me and my Father.

Joh 15:25  But this cometh to pass, that the word might be fulfilled that is written in their law, They hated me without a cause.


But Jesus had mentioned it earlier back in the sermon on the mount….

Mat 5:10  Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness’ sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

Mat 5:11  Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake.

Mat 5:12  Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.



This chapter also outlines the deception we will encounter…


Mat 24:4  And Jesus answered and said unto them, Take heed that no man deceive you.

Mat 24:5  For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many.


Mat 24:11  And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many.


Mat 24:23  Then if any man shall say unto you, Lo, here is Christ, or there; believe it not.

Mat 24:24  For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect.

Mat 24:25  Behold, I have told you before.


One of the best ways to counter this devotion is to be like the Berean’s..

Act 17:11  These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.


We also have record of Paul’s warning to the Ephesian elders…

Act 20:26  Wherefore I take you to record this day, that I am pure from the blood of all men.

Act 20:27  For I have not shunned to declare unto you all the counsel of God.

Act 20:28  Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood.

Act 20:29  For I know this, that after my departing shall grievous wolves enter in among you, not sparing the flock.

Act 20:30  Also of your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them.

Act 20:31  Therefore watch, and remember, that by the space of three years I ceased not to warn every one night and day with tears.


As for the time of the End of Days. Jesus gives good advice.

These verses could refer to either 70 AD or the latter.

Mat 24:6  And ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars: see that ye be not troubled: for all these thingsmust come to pass, but the end is not yet.

Mat 24:7  For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places.

Mat 24:8  All these are the beginning of sorrows.


Mat 24:26  Wherefore if they shall say unto you, Behold, he is in the desert; go not forth: behold, he is in the secret chambers; believe it not.


Mat 24:36  But of that day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but my Father only.

Act 1:6  When they therefore were come together, they asked of him, saying, Lord, wilt thou at this time restore again the kingdom to Israel?

Act 1:7  And he said unto them, It is not for you to know the times or the seasons, which the Father hath put in his own power.

Act 1:8  But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.


This is not to say we should not be prepared nor not pursing our Lords business here on earth until that day.


Mat 24:42  Watch therefore: for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come.

Mat 24:43  But know this, that if the goodman of the house had known in what watch the thief would come, he would have watched, and would not have suffered his house to be broken up.

Mat 24:44  Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh.

Mat 24:45  Who then is a faithful and wise servant, whom his lord hath made ruler over his household, to give them meat in due season?

Mat 24:46  Blessed is that servant, whom his lord when he cometh shall find so doing.


Act 1:8  But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.


Joh 15:26  But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me:

Joh 15:27  And ye also shall bear witness, because ye have been with me from the beginning.


And what shall we be doing?


Joh 15:10  If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father’s commandments, and abide in his love.

Joh 15:11  These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full.

Joh 15:12  This is my commandment, That ye love one another, as I have loved you.

Joh 15:13  Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.

Joh 15:14  Ye are my friends, if ye do whatsoever I command you.

Joh 15:15  Henceforth I call you not servants; for the servant knoweth not what his lord doeth: but I have called you friends; for all things that I have heard of my Father I have made known unto you.

Joh 15:16  Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you.

Joh 15:17  These things I command you, that ye love one another.


There is no better place to start than here…


Mat 28:16  Then the eleven disciples went away into Galilee, into a mountain where Jesus had appointed them.

Mat 28:17  And when they saw him, they worshipped him: but some doubted.

Mat 28:18  And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.

Mat 28:19  Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:

Mat 28:20  Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.


These men pursued this and changed the world…..and they did not shy away from the persecution, real persecution, not some imagined persecution, tradition shows they all died in martyrdom, or exile.


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