A Bible Study:
The Revelation to John
May 30, 2006
The Prophecies of Jesus In Matthew
A Study of The Revelation to John
By Bernie Parsons - May 30, 2006
A Study of Matthew Chapter 24:1-33
Matthew 24:1: “And Jesus went out, and departed from the temple: and his disciples came to him for to shew him the buildings of the temple.
2: And Jesus said unto them, See ye not all these things? verily I say unto you, There shall not be left here one stone upon another, that shall not be thrown down.”
The disciples, like other Jews, gloried in the beautiful temple that Herod had restored. This was the second temple, built by Zerubabbel, and expanded and embellished by Herod. The Jewish historian, Flavius Josephus, gives account of just how beautiful the temple was, including the white marble that gleamed and sparkled, seen by visitors approaching the city from miles away.
Jesus prophesied the total destruction of the temple and its beautiful marble stones. No doubt shocked by this profound and disturbing revelation, His disciples inquired:
Matthew 24:3: “And as he sat upon the mount of Olives, the disciples came unto him privately, saying, Tell us, when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world?”
In order to justify The Judgment Day doctrine of Roman Catholics and Protestants, many have declared this to be two distinct questions: (1) When shall the temple be destroyed? and, (2) When shall be the End of The World?
That is not what was asked. Look at it again. It is basically one question with two parts.
(1a) When shall the temple be destroyed? and, (1b) What will be the signs of your coming, and the end of the age?
In fact, this is made very clear in the account rendered by Mark.
Mark 13:4: Tell us, when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign when all these things shall be fulfilled?”
It was one question comprised of both when and what components. When will it happen, and what will be the signs that it is happening? Remember that the only thing under discussion by Jesus and His disciples in this context is the destruction of the temple! They not only wanted a time frame for the occurrence, but they also wanted indicators to warn that it was happening!
As Jesus gave His answer, He went into an elaborate description of what was to come. This answer surely shows the common doctrine of The Judgment Day, and The End of the World, to be false. For instance, if it were to occur suddenly and catastrophically, as many believe, there would have no value in warning against false Christs. In other words, the events were such that they could be misconstrued, or even misappropriated, by false men pretending to be the Lord Jesus.
Matthew 24:4: “And Jesus answered and said unto them, Take heed that no man deceive you.
5: For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many.”
If the return of Christ was abrupt and caused all things to fail, then there would be no room for the false Christs to deceive the people.
Matthew 24:6: “And ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars: see that ye be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet.
7: For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places.
8: All these are the beginning of sorrows.”
Before the great and notable day of the Lord, there would be wars and reports of wars. The end would not immediately occur. The pertinent question is—the end of what? In answer to their question, it was the end of the temple, and with it, the end of the Jewish age. Before the temple would be destroyed, there would be wars, food shortages, outbreaks of disease, and earthquakes in different places. Even so, this would signal, not the end of sorrows, but the beginning!
Matthew 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.
10: And then shall many be offended, and shall betray one another, and shall hate one another.
11: And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many.
12: And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold.
13: But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.”
The disciples would be tortured and killed for the name of Jesus. Family members would turn on one another, and weak Christians would betray their own brethren. False prophets would arise to lead astray the weak. The Christians who retained their faith through all of these troubles would be saved. Such terrible persecution came under the reign of Cæsar Nero, who sanctioned wholesale slaughter of Christians and Jews.
Matthew 24:14: “And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come.”
Many cite Matthew 24:14 as proof that “the end” is future, and has not come. Of course, they describe it as “The End of the World”, in which the planet is atomized, or else is burned to a cinder. Remember that “the end of the age” is what is under discussion. The Jewish age would not completely close until the gospel was preached among the Gentile nations. Again, this scripture is also often misconstrued. There are those who argue that, since there are people who believe other religions that the gospel has not yet been preached to the entire world.
Mark 16:15: “And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.”
Romans 1:16: “For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.”
Luke 24:46: “And said unto them, Thus it is written, and thus it behoved Christ to suffer, and to rise from the dead the third day:
47: And that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem.”
The gospel was first preached among the Jews. They were given almost forty years to accept the teaching of the apostles regarding the Messiah before the end of the temple would come. During that time, the gospel was also preached to the Gentiles—which is what is meant by the expression “all the world”.
1 Timothy 3:16: “And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached unto the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory.”
Galatians 3:13: “Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree:
14: That the blessing of Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Jesus Christ; that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith.”
There were many Old Testament prophecies regarding this, especially by Isaiah.
Isaiah 2:2: “And it shall come to pass in the last days, that the mountain of the LORD's house shall be established in the top of the mountains, and shall be exalted above the hills; and all nations shall flow unto it.
3: And many people shall go and say, Come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths: for out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem.”
Isaiah 11:10: “And in that day there shall be a root of Jesse, which shall stand for an ensign of the people; to it shall the Gentiles seek: and his rest shall be glorious.”
Isaiah 42:1: “Behold my servant, whom I uphold; mine elect, in whom my soul delighteth; I have put my spirit upon him: he shall bring forth judgment to the Gentiles.”
Isaiah 42:6: “I the LORD have called thee in righteousness, and will hold thine hand, and will keep thee, and give thee for a covenant of the people, for a light of the Gentiles;”
Isaiah 49:6: “And he said, It is a light thing that thou shouldest be my servant to raise up the tribes of Jacob, and to restore the preserved of Israel: I will also give thee for a light to the Gentiles, that thou mayest be my salvation unto the end of the earth.”
Isaiah 62:1: “For Zion's sake will I not hold my peace, and for Jerusalem's sake I will not rest, until the righteousness thereof go forth as brightness, and the salvation thereof as a lamp that burneth.
2: And the Gentiles shall see thy righteousness, and all kings thy glory: and thou shalt be called by a new name, which the mouth of the LORD shall name.”
Galatians 3:8: “And the scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the heathen through faith, preached before the gospel unto Abraham, saying, In thee shall all nations be blessed.”
Now that we understand that Jesus was speaking of the preaching of the gospel among the Gentiles, we must ask ourselves, “Did this occur during that generation?”
Romans 16:25: “Now to him that is of power to stablish you according to my gospel, and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery, which was kept secret since the world began,
26: But now is made manifest, and by the scriptures of the prophets, according to the commandment of the everlasting God, made known to all nations for the obedience of faith:”
Colossians 1:5: “For the hope which is laid up for you in heaven, whereof ye heard before in the word of the truth of the gospel;
6: Which is come unto you, as it is in all the world; and bringeth forth fruit, as it doth also in you, since the day ye heard of it, and knew the grace of God in truth:”
Colossians 1:23: “If ye continue in the faith grounded and settled, and be not moved away from the hope of the gospel, which ye have heard, and which was preached to every creature which is under heaven; whereof I Paul am made a minister;”
Not only did the apostle Paul verify that he had preached the gospel to every creature, but there is further evidence of how the gospel was spread.
Acts 2:1: “And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place.
2: And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting.
3: And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them.
4: And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.
5: And there were dwelling at Jerusalem Jews, devout men, out of every nation under heaven.
6: Now when this was noised abroad, the multitude came together, and were confounded, because that every man heard them speak in his own language.”
Thus, the requirement that the gospel be preached among the Gentiles before the end would come was fulfilled in that generation to which the apostles preached.
Matthew 24:15: “When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoso readeth, let him understand:)
16: Then let them which be in Judaea flee into the mountains:
17: Let him which is on the housetop not come down to take any thing out of his house:
18: Neither let him which is in the field return back to take his clothes.”
There is much controversy as to who, or what, is the abomination of desolation. Many try to see it in the present time, while others try to predict it as a future manifestation. However, if we will study the context carefully, we will see that it occurred during that first century AD.
Abomination means the hated thing, while desolation indicates total destruction. Therefore, we can say that the abomination of desolation is the hated thing that causes total destruction. We have already studied prophecies from the book of Daniel.
Daniel 9:27: “And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week: and in the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease, and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate.”
Daniel 11:31: “And arms shall stand on his part, and they shall pollute the sanctuary of strength, and shall take away the daily sacrifice, and they shall place the abomination that maketh desolate.”
Arms clues us immediately to the fact that it is an army. Luke wrote about this in such a way that it is readily understood.
Luke 19: 41: “And when he was come near, he beheld the city, and wept over it,
42: Saying, If thou hadst known, even thou, at least in this thy day, the things which belong unto thy peace! but now they are hid from thine eyes.
43: For the days shall come upon thee, that thine enemies shall cast a trench about thee, and compass thee round, and keep thee in on every side,
44: And shall lay thee even with the ground, and thy children within thee; and they shall not leave in thee one stone upon another; because thou knewest not the time of thy visitation.”
Luke 21:20: “And when ye shall see Jerusalem compassed with armies, then know that the desolation thereof is nigh.
21: Then let them which are in Judaea flee to the mountains; and let them which are in the midst of it depart out; and let not them that are in the countries enter thereinto.”
Luke said that Jesus was referring to Jerusalem being surrounded by armies. These armies would bring about the destruction of not only the temple, but also Jerusalem. This prophecy came to fruition when the Roman armies under Vespasian, and his son, Titus, surrounded Jerusalem and laid siege to it, finally conquering it in AD 70. The Roman armies were the hated thing that makes desolate—the abomination of desolation!
In fact, the devastation would be so severe that Jesus actually instructed the residents of Judæa to hide in the mountains. He told those in Judæa to leave it, and those who were outside of the country not to enter it!
Matthew 24:17 “Let him which is on the housetop not come down to take any thing out of his house:
18: Neither let him which is in the field return back to take his clothes.
19: And woe unto them that are with child, and to them that give suck in those days!
20: But pray ye that your flight be not in the winter, neither on the sabbath day:
21: For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be.”
The danger was so great that Jesus told His disciples that, upon hearing of the armies, they were to flee without delay. They were not even to take time to gather up things for the journey. Instead, they were to drop whatever they were doing and run to the hills for safety. Those with babes in their arms would be especially hampered, as would anyone traveling in the cold season, or on the Sabbath Day. The next pronouncement of Jesus was chilling:
“For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be.”
This is a quotation of a prophecy from Daniel.
Daniel 12:1: “And at that time shall Michael stand up, the great prince which standeth for the children of thy people: and there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time: and at that time thy people shall be delivered, every one that shall be found written in the book.”
The trouble that would be poured out on the Jews at that time was such as mankind had not seen, nor ever would again. The Jewish historian, Josephus chronicles the events, and gives details of the destruction that was wrought during the siege of Jerusalem.
Matthew 24:22: “And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect's sake those days shall be shortened.”
Jesus had said that the house of the Jews would be left desolate.
Luke 13:34: “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, which killest the prophets, and stonest them that are sent unto thee; how often would I have gathered thy children together, as a hen doth gather her brood under her wings, and ye would not!
35: Behold, your house is left unto you desolate: and verily I say unto you, Ye shall not see me, until the time come when ye shall say, Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord.”
Romans 9:27: "Esaias
also crieth concerning Israel, Though the number of the children of Israel
be as the sand of the sea, a remnant shall be saved:
The believers in Jesus would be spared because they would heed His warning, and flee before the armies laid waste to the city, and the countryside.
Matthew 24:23: “Then if any man shall say unto you, Lo, here is Christ, or there; believe it not.
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.
25: Behold, I have told you before.
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.
27: For as the lightning cometh out of the east, and shineth even unto the west; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.
28: For wheresoever the carcase is, there will the eagles be gathered together.”
The coming of Christ, often referred to in Christian circles as The Second Coming, is not as they commonly describe it. In fact, there would be false Christs who would claim to be Christ at this coming. Jesus told His followers that His coming would not be hidden. Just as lightning is clearly visible, so would His coming be. Just like birds hovering over the carcass of a dead animal, His coming would be obvious.
Matthew 24:29: “Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken:
30: And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.
31: And he shall send his angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.”
Jesus had already come and preached the gospel of the kingdom of God, calling for all men to repent. The Lord gave the Jews from the time of His death on the cross until the destruction of Jerusalem in AD 70 to repent and obey that gospel message. Then came the close of the age—the “end of the world”. With the destruction of the temple, the holy city, and the nation of Judaea, came the end of the Law of Moses and the temple worship.
With the coming of the Roman armies was the coming of Jesus. To understand this, pay attention to Old and New Testament references to things like “the day of the Lord”, “day of visitation”, judgment, and the coming of the Lord.
Some examples to consider are as follows:
Exodus 32:34: “Therefore now go, lead the people unto the place of which I have spoken unto thee: behold, mine Angel shall go before thee: nevertheless in the day when I visit I will visit their sin upon them.”
Isaiah 10:3: “And what will ye do in the day of visitation, and in the desolation which shall come from far? to whom will ye flee for help? and where will ye leave your glory?”
Isaiah 29:6: “Thou shalt be visited of the LORD of hosts with thunder, and with earthquake, and great noise, with storm and tempest, and the flame of devouring fire.”
Jeremiah 9:9: “Shall I not visit them for these things? saith the LORD: shall not my soul be avenged on such a nation as this?”
Jeremiah 10:15: “They are vanity, and the work of errors: in the time of their visitation they shall perish.”
When someone comes, they arrive for a visit, do they not? When the Lord comes, He pays a visit. When Jesus said that He would come, it would be such a visitation!
Exodus 33:5: “For the LORD had said unto Moses, Say unto the children of Israel, Ye are a stiffnecked people: I will come up into the midst of thee in a moment, and consume thee: therefore now put off thy ornaments from thee, that I may know what to do unto thee.”
Isaiah 35:4: “Say to them that are of a fearful heart, Be strong, fear not: behold, your God will come with vengeance, even God with a recompence; he will come and save you.”
Isaiah 40:10: “Behold, the Lord GOD will come with strong hand, and his arm shall rule for him: behold, his reward is with him, and his work before him.”
Isaiah 66:15: “For, behold, the LORD will come with fire, and with his chariots like a whirlwind, to render his anger with fury, and his rebuke with flames of fire.”
Micah 1:2: “Hear, all ye people; hearken, O earth, and all that therein is: and let the Lord GOD be witness against you, the Lord from his holy temple.
3: For, behold, the LORD cometh forth out of his place, and will come down, and tread upon the high places of the earth.
4: And the mountains shall be molten under him, and the valleys shall be cleft, as wax before the fire, and as the waters that are poured down a steep place.”
Malachi 3:1: “Behold, I will send my messenger, and he shall prepare the way before me: and the Lord, whom ye seek, shall suddenly come to his temple, even the messenger of the covenant, whom ye delight in: behold, he shall come, saith the LORD of hosts.
2: But who may abide the day of his coming? and who shall stand when he appeareth? for he is like a refiner's fire, and like fullers' soap:
3: And he shall sit as a refiner and purifer of silver: and he shall purify the sons of Levi, and purge them as gold and silver, that they may offer unto the LORD an offering in righteousness.
4: Then shall the offering of Judah and Jerusalem be pleasant unto the LORD, as in the days of old, and as in former years.
5: And I will come near to you to judgment; and I will be a swift witness against the sorcerers, and against the adulterers, and against false swearers, and against those that oppress the hireling in his wages, the widow, and the fatherless, and that turn aside the stranger from his right, and fear not me, saith the LORD of hosts.
6: For I am the LORD, I change not; therefore ye sons of Jacob are not consumed.
7: Even from the days of your fathers ye are gone away from mine ordinances, and have not kept them. Return unto me, and I will return unto you, saith the LORD of hosts. But ye said, Wherein shall we return?”
Luke 19:44: “And shall lay thee even with the ground, and thy children within thee; and they shall not leave in thee one stone upon another; because thou knewest not the time of thy visitation.”
1 Peter 2:12: “Having your conversation honest among the Gentiles: that, whereas they speak against you as evildoers, they may by your good works, which they shall behold, glorify God in the day of visitation.”
The day of visitation, or coming, is the day of the Lord—the Lord’s day—and a time of God’s righteous indignation and wrath toward the disobedient and ungodly, as well as a time of reward to the obedient and righteous. When the Lord visits, He comes for judgment.
Luke 1:68: Blessed be the Lord God of Israel; for he hath visited and redeemed his people,
Luke 1:78: “Through the tender mercy of our God; whereby the dayspring from on high hath visited us,”
Luke 7:16: “And there came a fear on all: and they glorified God, saying, That a great prophet is risen up among us; and, That God hath visited his people.”
Acts 15:14: “Simeon hath declared how God at the first did visit the Gentiles, to take out of them a people for his name.”
Isaiah 13:6: “Howl ye; for the day of the LORD is at hand; it shall come as a destruction from the Almighty.”
Isaiah 13:9: “Behold, the day of the LORD cometh, cruel both with wrath and fierce anger, to lay the land desolate: and he shall destroy the sinners thereof out of it.”
Isaiah 34:8: “For it is the day of the LORD's vengeance, and the year of recompences for the controversy of Zion.”
Jeremiah 46:10: “For this is the day of the Lord GOD of hosts, a day of vengeance, that he may avenge him of his adversaries: and the sword shall devour, and it shall be satiate and made drunk with their blood: for the Lord GOD of hosts hath a sacrifice in the north country by the river Euphrates.”
Joel 2:11: “And the LORD shall utter his voice before his army: for his camp is very great: for he is strong that executeth his word: for the day of the LORD is great and very terrible; and who can abide it?”
Joel 2:31: “The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the great and the terrible day of the LORD come.”
Joel 3:14: “Multitudes, multitudes in the valley of decision: for the day of the LORD is near in the valley of decision.”
Amos 5:18: “Woe unto you that desire the day of the LORD! to what end is it for you? the day of the LORD is darkness, and not light.”
Amos 5:20: “Shall not the day of the LORD be darkness, and not light? even very dark, and no brightness in it?”
Obadiah 1:15: “For the day of the LORD is near upon all the heathen: as thou hast done, it shall be done unto thee: thy reward shall return upon thine own head.”
Zephaniah 1:14: “The great day of the LORD is near, it is near, and hasteth greatly, even the voice of the day of the LORD: the mighty man shall cry there bitterly.
15: That day is a day of wrath, a day of trouble and distress, a day of wasteness and desolation, a day of darkness and gloominess, a day of clouds and thick darkness,
16: A day of the trumpet and alarm against the fenced cities, and against the high towers.
17: And I will bring distress upon men, that they shall walk like blind men, because they have sinned against the LORD: and their blood shall be poured out as dust, and their flesh as the dung.
18: Neither their silver nor their gold shall be able to deliver them in the day of the LORD's wrath; but the whole land shall be devoured by the fire of his jealousy: for he shall make even a speedy riddance of all them that dwell in the land.”
Isaiah 28:16: "Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD, Behold, I lay in Zion for a
foundation a stone, a tried stone, a precious corner stone, a sure
foundation: he that believeth shall not make haste.
This is the day of the Lord’s judgment, the day of wrath. It is not referring to a single, literal day, when the planet earth is to be crisped, or atomized. Rather, it refers to the Lord bringing in enemy nations to work His vengeance and wrath upon the disobedient. He uses their armies as His armies. He comes, and when He comes, vengeance is had!
Malachi 4:1: “For, behold, the day cometh, that shall burn as an oven; and all the proud, yea, and all that do wickedly, shall be stubble: and the day that cometh shall burn them up, saith the LORD of hosts, that it shall leave them neither root nor branch.
2: But unto you that fear my name shall the Sun of righteousness arise with healing in his wings; and ye shall go forth, and grow up as calves of the stall.
3: And ye shall tread down the wicked; for they shall be ashes under the soles of your feet in the day that I shall do this, saith the LORD of hosts.
4: Remember ye the law of Moses my servant, which I commanded unto him in Horeb for all Israel, with the statutes and judgments.
5: Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the LORD:
6: And he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the children, and the heart of the children to their fathers, lest I come and smite the earth with a curse.”
Matthew 11:11: “Verily I say unto you, Among them that are born of women there hath not risen a greater than John the Baptist: notwithstanding he that is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.
12: And from the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffereth violence, and the violent take it by force.
13: For all the prophets and the law prophesied until John.
14: And if ye will receive it, this is Elias, which was for to come.”
Matthew 17:10: “And his disciples asked him, saying, Why then say the scribes that Elias must first come?
11: And Jesus answered and said unto them, Elias truly shall first come, and restore all things.
12: But I say unto you, That Elias is come already, and they knew him not, but have done unto him whatsoever they listed. Likewise shall also the Son of man suffer of them.
13: Then the disciples understood that he spake unto them of John the Baptist.”
Malachi said that Elijah would come before the great and dreadful day of the Lord. Jesus said that John the Baptist was Elijah (Elias). The coming of Jesus (which is often dubbed The Second Coming) was to be a day of dread, a day of vengeance, in which the enemies of God would be devoured as stubble before the flame, visited upon the Jew first, and then upon the Gentile!
Romans 2:1: “Therefore thou art inexcusable, O man, whosoever thou art that judgest: for wherein thou judgest another, thou condemnest thyself; for thou that judgest doest the same things.
2: But we are sure that the judgment of God is according to truth against them which commit such things.
3: And thinkest thou this, O man, that judgest them which do such things, and doest the same, that thou shalt escape the judgment of God?
4: Or despisest thou the riches of his goodness and forbearance and longsuffering; not knowing that the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance?
5: But after thy hardness and impenitent heart treasurest up unto thyself wrath against the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God;
6: Who will render to every man according to his deeds:
7: To them who by patient continuance in well doing seek for glory and honour and immortality, eternal life:
8: But unto them that are contentious, and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness, indignation and wrath,
9: Tribulation and anguish, upon every soul of man that doeth evil, of the Jew first, and also of the Gentile;
10: But glory, honour, and peace, to every man that worketh good, to the Jew first, and also to the Gentile:
11: For there is no respect of persons with God.”
Matthew 3:1: “In those days came John the Baptist, preaching in the wilderness of Judaea,
2: And saying, Repent ye: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.
3: For this is he that was spoken of by the prophet Esaias, saying, The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight.
4: And the same John had his raiment of camel's hair, and a leathern girdle about his loins; and his meat was locusts and wild honey.
5: Then went out to him Jerusalem, and all Judaea, and all the region round about Jordan,
6: And were baptized of him in Jordan, confessing their sins.
7: But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees come to his baptism, he said unto them, O generation of vipers, who hath warned you to flee from the wrath to come?
8: Bring forth therefore fruits meet for repentance:
9: And think not to say within yourselves, We have Abraham to our father: for I say unto you, that God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham.
10: And now also the axe is laid unto the root of the trees: therefore every tree which bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.
11: I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance: but he that cometh after me is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear: he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and with fire:
12: Whose fan is in his hand, and he will throughly purge his floor, and gather his wheat into the garner; but he will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire.”
Luke 21:20: “And when ye shall see Jerusalem compassed with armies, then know that the desolation thereof is nigh.
21: Then let them which are in Judaea flee to the mountains; and let them which are in the midst of it depart out; and let not them that are in the countries enter thereinto.
22: For these be the days of vengeance, that all things which are written may be fulfilled.
23: But woe unto them that are with child, and to them that give suck, in those days! for there shall be great distress in the land, and wrath upon this people.
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.
25: And there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars; and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity; the sea and the waves roaring;
26: Men's hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth: for the powers of heaven shall be shaken.
27: And then shall they see the Son of man coming in a cloud with power and great glory.”
Romans 1:18: “For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness;”
Romans 12:19: “Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord.”
Romans 13:4: “For he is the minister of God to thee for good. But if thou do that which is evil, be afraid; for he beareth not the sword in vain: for he is the minister of God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that doeth evil.”
God uses kings, nations, and armies to carry out His wrath against the evil ones.
Ephesians 5:6: “Let no man deceive you with vain words: for because of these things cometh the wrath of God upon the children of disobedience.”
Jude 14: “And Enoch also, the seventh from Adam, prophesied of these, saying, Behold, the Lord cometh with ten thousands of his saints,
15: To execute judgment upon all, and to convince all that are ungodly among them of all their ungodly deeds which they have ungodly committed, and of all their hard speeches which ungodly sinners have spoken against him.”
Revelation 6:15: “And the kings of the earth, and the great men, and the rich men, and the chief captains, and the mighty men, and every bondman, and every free man, hid themselves in the dens and in the rocks of the mountains;
16: And said to the mountains and rocks, Fall on us, and hide us from the face of him that sitteth on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb:
17: For the great day of his wrath is come; and who shall be able to stand?”
The coming of the Lord was a day of judgment, a day of punishment and reward.
Matthew 24:31: “And he shall send his angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.”
This refers to the gathering of the righteous from all directions—north, south, east, and west—the four winds. Remember that the gospel was to be preached to all the world. Those who obeyed the gospel of Jesus Christ would be gathered together in the ekklesia, the body of Christ.
Ezekiel 34:6: “My sheep wandered through all the mountains, and upon every high hill: yea, my flock was scattered upon all the face of the earth, and none did search or seek after them.”
Ezekiel 34:12: “As a shepherd seeketh out his flock in the day that he is among his sheep that are scattered; so will I seek out my sheep, and will deliver them out of all places where they have been scattered in the cloudy and dark day.”
John 10:14: “I am the good shepherd, and know my sheep, and am known of mine.
15: As the Father knoweth me, even so know I the Father: and I lay down my life for the sheep.
16: And other sheep I have, which are not of this fold: them also I must bring, and they shall hear my voice; and there shall be one fold, and one shepherd.”
Ephesians 2:11: “Wherefore remember, that ye being in time past Gentiles in the flesh, who are called Uncircumcision by that which is called the Circumcision in the flesh made by hands;
12: That at that time ye were without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope, and without God in the world:
13: But now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ.
14: For he is our peace, who hath made both one, and hath broken down the middle wall of partition between us;
15: Having abolished in his flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments contained in ordinances; for to make in himself of twain one new man, so making peace;
16: And that he might reconcile both unto God in one body by the cross, having slain the enmity thereby:
17: And came and preached peace to you which were afar off, and to them that were nigh.”
The gospel was preached in the Gentile nations, and the righteous of all the earth were gathered together in Christ Jesus.
Matthew 24:32: “Now learn a parable of the fig tree; When his branch is yet tender, and putteth forth leaves, ye know that summer is nigh:
33: So likewise ye, when ye shall see all these things, know that it is near, even at the doors.”
In answer to their question as to when the destruction of the temple would be, and the signs of His coming to do that destruction, Jesus states that these things that He just described to them are indicative of the impending destruction. Just like the tree puts forth leaves to signal the coming of spring, so it is that when they see these things come to pass, they will know that the coming of the Lord is near.
The apostle Paul had also given the Gentile Christians the signs to watch for.
2 Thessalonians 2:5: “Remember ye not, that, when I was yet with you, I told you these things?
6: And now ye know what withholdeth that he might be revealed in his time.
7: For the mystery of iniquity doth already work: only he who now letteth will let, until he be taken out of the way.
8: And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming:
9: Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders,”