signs that shall surround the end of the world. Therefore, what Christ is saying has a double meaning and application (see
DEEPER STUDY #3—Mt.24:1-14; 24:15-28. Both notes will help to see the double application.)
The Lord’s words apply both to the disciples of His day and to all disciples who were to follow in succeeding generations.
As long as the earth stands, the disciples of “the last days” (or ages) will face many of the same signs faced by those who ex-
perienced the destruction of Jerusalem. But there is to be one difference. At the end of the world, the signs will increase and
intensify. So terrible a day is coming that it can be called, “the beginning of sorrows” (Mt.24:8) and “the great tribulation”
(Mt.24:21). (See DEEPER STUDY #1,2—Mt.24:1-28; note—24:15-28.)
3. A quick overview of the passages dealing with the signs also help in understanding the chapters.
a. The nine signs of the last days (that is, the last days before both Jerusalem’s destruction and the world’s end)
b. The tenth and most terrible sign: “the abomination of desolation” and the Great Tribulation (Mt.24:15-28).
c. The Coming of the Son of Man (Mt.24:29-31).
The rest of what Christ covers deals with the actual time of the Lord’s return (Mt.24:32-41) and the believer’s duty to
watch and be prepared (Mt.24:42-25:46).
DEEPER STUDY # 3
(24:1-14) End Time: in Mt.24:1-29 Christ gives at least ten signs of the last days. Several things need to be noted as this
passage is studied.
1. Christ is answering two or three very specific questions. When will the temple be destroyed? And what shall be the
sign of Christ’s return and of the end of the world?
2. The signs given by Christ are to some extent present in every generation. A quick review of world history shows
this. In light of this fact, a question has to be asked: why, then, is Christ spelling out every day happenings as signs of the last
days? The next point, point three, answers this question.
3. There is to be an intensification of the signs right before the fall of Jerusalem and right before the end of the world.
The intensification of the signs is clearly seen by the following.
a. The emphasis upon the possibility of being deceived.
“Take heed that no man deceive you” (v.5).
“Many shall deceive many” (v.5).
“False prophets...shall deceive many” (v.11).
b. Christ uses both the word and the idea of “many” time and again, indicating an increase over what had been
(the word is used in v.5, 10, 11, 12; and the idea is used in v.6, 7, 9).
c. Christ makes three significant statements that definitely point toward an intensification of the signs.
“All these are the beginning of sorrows” (v.8).
“But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved” (v.13).
“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” (v.14).
d. Other Scriptures say there is to be an intensification of evil in the last days.
“This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come” (2 Tim.3:1).
“Knowing this first, that there shall come in the last days scoffers, walking after their
own lusts” (2 Pt.3:3).
“How that they told you there should be mockers in the last time, who should walk after
their own ungodly lusts” (Jude 18).
4. The present age is considered by God to be “the age of the last days” or “the last time.” According to God’s timeta-
ble, the history of the church, its presence on earth, takes place in “the last days” or during “the last times.”
“But this is that which was spoken by the prophet Joel: And it shall come to pass in the last days,
saith God, I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh: and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy,
and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams” (Acts 2:16-17).
“Hath in these last days spoken unto us by his son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by
whom also he made the worlds” (Heb.1:2).
“Little children, it is the last time” (1 Jn.2:18).
5. Christ gives these signs for a very specific purpose. He is preparing His disciples to endure and to keep their hope
for His return alive. He is strengthening their faith in God and in the world to come, the new heavens and earth (see note,
pt. 1—Mt.24:1-31, the three things that help in understanding the passage).
(24:1-14) Introduction: in understanding this passage, we have to be very careful not to read into the passage more than
Christ was saying, nor to miss what He was saying. Both mistakes were made by religionists concerning Christ’s first com-
A major fact to keep in mind is this. The disciples did think that all three events (Jerusalem’s destruction, the Lord’s re-
turn, and the world’s end) would happen at about the same time. They did think in terms of the Messianic kingdom of God
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