Matthew 24 Part III
By Pat Andrews
My friends who call themselves Preterist, don’t agree with me that the disciples asked Jesus more than one question in Matthew 24:3; they avow that it’s only one question. They say that the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 AD, was also when Jesus returned. They believe that Jesus returned for the last time in 70 AD.
It is mandatory that they hold this view; they are forced into it. They believe the devil is gone, there is no judgment day, the earth will last forever, that we are all being judged right now, that Jesus died spiritually (It scares me to even write this blasphemous remark), that there will be no physical, literal bodily resurrection from the grave, and on and on it goes. I will cover any of these that you like, just let me know.
The reason that I cut off one of the questions in the previous lesson at verse 39, is because of the Greek Word, ***“Parousia”***. The definition is given here:
Strongs Lexicon # 3952. parousia ***parousia***, par-oo-see’-ah
from the present participle of 3918; a being near, i.e. advent (often, return; specially, of Christ to punish Jerusalem, or finally the wicked); (by implication) physically, aspect:–coming, presence.
This word, “Parousia” is found four times in Matthew 24. Verse 3, 27, 37 and 39. You look at the definition; you decide how the word, “Parousia” is defined in these four verses. I will tell you this, all four times the word “Parousia” is used, it means the same thing, in all four of the verses. (Remember…Context)
Notice this: I asked this question in the previous lesson:
· In verses 4 through 39, “The Coming of the Lord” is compared three different times to something else. What are those three things that it’s compared to? I cut this question off at verse 39 because of the Greek Word, “PAROUSIA”. I’ll explain next time.
I asked this question in this way because I wanted you to figure out how verse 27 fits into this narrative. Is the word, “Parousia” in this verse referring to the destruction of Jerusalem, or is Jesus saying, “…don’t be deceived…if they say I’m here or there or in the desert etc. etc, don’t believe those lies, ***because*** My “Parousia”; My second coming will be like this…verse 27, 37 and 39?
I believe that Jesus is comparing His second coming to lightning (vs. 27), to the suddenness of Noah’s flood while everyone was just carrying on their regular activities (vs. 37) and to the finality of that judgment (vs.39). You must decide what you believe. Your faith must be your own.
There is another Greek Word that is used in the other verses of Matthew 24 that speaks of something coming or appearing. Sometimes, it is even speaking of the coming of Christ or the coming of the lord…notice the lower case “L” in these verses. That word is:
***“Erchomai”***. It’s definition is as follows:
Strongs Interlinear #2064. ercomai ***erchomai***, er’-khom-ahee
middle voice of a primary verb
(used only in the present and imperfect tenses, the others being supplied by a kindred (middle voice)
eleuthomai el-yoo’-thom-ahee, or (active) eltho el’-tho,
which do not otherwise occur)
to come or go (in a great variety of applications, literally and figuratively):–accompany, appear, bring, come, enter, fall out, go, grow, X light, X next, pass, resort, be set.
This word is of no use to us right now; I just wanted you to know the difference in the two Greek Words. I will get back to this difference later and we will spend some more time on it, God Willing. It’s found 8 times in Matthew 24. You can see for yourself how it is defined and used.
**Mt 24:5 ** For many shall *come* **
**Mt 24:30** And then shall *appear* **
**Mt 24:39** And knew not until the flood *came* **
**Mt 24:42** Watch therefore: for ye know not what hour your Lord doth *come* **
**Mt 24:43** But know this, that if the goodman of the house had known in what watch the thief would *come* **
**Mt 24:44** Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man *cometh* **
**Mt 24:46** Blessed is that servant, whom his lord when he *cometh* **
**Mt 24:48 ** But and if that evil servant shall say in his heart, My lord delayeth his *coming ***
Now to the “DAY OF THE LORD”, the stars falling etc, etc, in Verses 29-31. These three verses are highly figurative. They are not literally talking about stars falling and so forth. There are numerous prophecies that use similar language in the Old Testament; prophecies that foretell a coming judgment on a specific nation. I’m not going to copy the verses, but I will show where you can find them, and you can decide what they mean.
**Isaiah 13:1-13 **Isaiah is here prophesying against Babylon. A nation that God was about to bring Judgment on. Read all the similarities of this passage and Matthew 24:29-31. The world wasn’t coming to an end, (well maybe the Babylonians thought it might be).
This coming judgment on Babylon by the Medes took place while Daniel was in Babylon in his later years, around 500 BC.
**Ezekiel 32:1-11** Ezekiel is prophesying against Egypt and he is using the same kind of figurative language that Isaiah and Christ used. Notice all the similarities. Babylon would be the one who would carry out this judgment.
Joel 1, 2 and 3 The destruction is going to come upon Zion itself if she doesn’t repent. Same figurative language.
**“THE DAY OF THE LORD”**is **not always** talking about the end of the world. It speaks of coming judgment. Look at these prophets of old and see how similar they are to Matthew 24. See also Obadiah 1:15 and Zephaniah 1:14-15. Notice the things that are going to happen on the day of the Lord. All of these passages in the Old Testament are referring to a nation; a small portion of the world.
However; the Bible also speaks of a final “Day of The Lord”; that is the one that applies to us today. That day of the Lord is not just to one nation of folks…The “DAY OF THE LORD” that is still to come is for the entire world. Once again, the context determines the understanding of the scope of that day. I could put up more verses, but just consider this one:
**II Peter 3:10** But **the day of the Lord** will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up.
Ask yourself some questions. Is this, **“DAY OF THE LORD”**, in **II Peter 3:10** talking about the destruction of only India or only Iraq or only Brittan or only Argentina or only Arkansas or only America or only Minot, North Dakota or only the Boy Scouts of America or only all Wal-Mart stores…or is this, **“DAY OF THE LORD”** greater in scope than all those **“DAY OF THE LORD”**’s of previous prophecies.
You have to decide for yourself. Your faith must be your faith.
God willing, there will be more to come on this chapter.
1300 words. Sorry, I went past the 1000 word goal.