What Does Yeshua Say About the End Times – Part 5

In my last post, we began to look at the issue of the Abomination of Desolation.  In this post we will conclude that topic as we continue to explore the Olivet Discourse.

The Abomination of the Desolation (cont.)

“For there will be trouble then [at the time of the abomination] worse than there has ever been from the beginning of the world until now, and there will be nothing like it again!  Indeed, if the length of this time had not been limited, no one would survive; but for the sake of those who have been chosen, its length will be limited.  At that time, if someone says to you, ‘Look! Here’s the Messiah!’ or, ‘There he is!’ don’t believe him.  For there will appear false Messiahs and false prophets performing great miracles — amazing things! — so as to fool even the chosen, if possible.  There! I have told you in advance!  So if people say to you, ‘Listen! He’s out in the desert!’ don’t go; or, ‘Look! He’s hidden away in a secret room!’ don’t believe it.  For when the Son of Man does come, it will be like lightning that flashes out of the east and fills the sky to the western horizon.  Wherever there’s a dead body, that’s where you find the vultures.” ~ Matthew 24:21-28 (CJB)

The prophet Daniel wrote, “When that time comes, Mikha’el, the great prince who champions your people, will stand up; and there will be a time of distress unparalleled between the time they became a nation and that moment.  At that time, your people will be delivered, everyone whose name is found written in the book.” (Daniel 12:1).

Great suffering is in store for God’s people throughout the years ahead.  This way of describing the future is also used by Jeremiah (Jeremiah 30:7).  The time would be evil and filled with suffering.  This language may sound like an exaggeration, but it is not unusual in Scripture when describing an impending disaster.  The Jewish historian Josephus recorded that when the Romans sacked Yerushalayim and devastated Judea, one hundred thousand Jews were taken prisoner and another 1.1 million died by slaughter and starvation. Continue reading “What Does Yeshua Say About the End Times – Part 5”

What Does Yeshua Say About the End Times – Part 4

In my last post, we looked at more warnings of the END TIMES.  In this post, we will begin to learn what we should do as Believers when the signs come to fruition.

Recall that Matthew 24 and 25 are known as the Olivet Discourse since Yeshua was sharing with His talmidim on the Mount of Olives.  We may interpret the Olivet Discourse, as with most Tanakh prophecies, as having a double fulfillment.  Yeshua was predicting the destruction of Yerushalayim and the END TIMES.  The references are interwoven so that themes from both the fall of Yerushalayim and the Second Coming occur as one expression of God’s judgment on unbelievers and deliverance for Believers.  However, in the first part of the prophecy, the destruction of Yerushalayim is more prominent; in the second part, the last days before Yeshua’s return are more prominent.

The Abomination of Desolation

“So when you see the abomination that causes desolation spoken about through the prophet Dani’el standing in the Holy Place (let the reader understand the allusion), that will be the time for those in Y’hudah to escape to the hills. If someone is on the roof, he must not go down to gather his belongings from his house; if someone is in the field, he must not turn back to get his coat.  What a terrible time it will be for pregnant women and nursing mothers!  Pray that you will not have to escape in winter or on Shabbat.” ~ Matthew 24:15-20

Daniel 9:27 tells of the abomination that causes desolation.  “And he shall make a strong covenant with many for one week, and for half of the week he shall put an end to sacrifice and offering.  And on the wing of abominations shall come one who makes desolate, until the decreed end is poured out on the desolator.” ~ Daniel 9:27 (ESV)

Several times in Jewish history it was thought that Dani’el’s prophecy was being fulfilled – most notably during the days of the Maccabees when Antiochus IV Epiphanes, the Seleucid king, ordered that an altar to the Greek god Zeus be constructed in the Temple (167 BCE).  He also decreed that swine and other unclean animals were to be sacrificed there, that the Sabbath was to be profaned, and that circumcision was to be abolished.  The cleansing of the restored Temple led to the celebration we now know as Hanukkah.  Interestingly, that celebration is not contained in the canon of the Tanakh, but is mentioned in John 10:22-23 while Yeshua was in Yerushalayim. Continue reading “What Does Yeshua Say About the End Times – Part 4”