Gospel of Matthew Chapter Twenty-Four

24:1 Then Jesus went out of the temple and was walking away when his disciples approached him to show him the buildings of the temple.
24:2 So Jesus said to them, “Don’t you see all these things? Truly I tell you, there will not remain one stone upon the other that has not been crumbled.”
24:3 Then as he sat on the Mount of Olives the disciples came to him privately, asking, “Tell us, when will these things occur? And what must take place before your presence at the end of this lifetime?”1
24:4 Jesus replied, saying to them, “Be careful not to be deceived by anyone.
24:5 Because many will come in my name, saying ‘I am the Anointed of God [Messiah, Christ]’ and will deceive many.
24:6 And you will hear of wars and rumors of wars – but don’t be alarmed, because many things will come to pass before your time of death.
24:7 Because tribe will rise against tribe and village against village and in some places there will be famines and storms.
24:8 But all these things are just the beginning of your tribulations.
24:9 Then they will deliver you to be persecuted, and shall ruin you and you will be hated by many people on my account.
24:10 And then many will become offensive and will betray one another and will hate one another.
24:11 And many false prophets will arise and deceive many.
24:12 And through the multiplication of lawlessness, the love of many people will grow cold.
24:13 But he who stands firm to the end will be saved.
24:14 And the gospel of the sanctuary will be preached throughout the land as a witness to the people – and then your time of death will come.
24:15 When you thus see the abomination of devastation that was spoken through Daniel the Prophet, remain at the Holy Place – let those who recognize this understand –
24:16 then allow those in Judea to flee into the mountains.
24:17 Don’t let those on the housetops come down to take anything out of the house;
24:18 Nor let those in the field go back to get their coats.
24:19 And grief to those with child, and to those who nurse during that period.
24:20 But pray that your departure will not be in the winter, nor on the Sabbath.
24:21 Because there will be great suffering – such as not seen since the beginning of this society nor into its future.
24:22 Unless their time has been cut short, no one will be safe. Rather, for the sake of the Chosen, their time will be shortened.
24:23 Then if any one says to you, ‘Look, here is the Anointed of God [Messiah, Christ]’ – don’t believe it.
24:24 Because many false Messiahs will rise, and false prophets who will show great miracles and feats – if indeed it is possible – and will deceive even the Chosen.
24:25 Look, now I have told you beforehand.
24:26 So if they say to you, ‘Look, he is in the desert’ – don’t go out there; or ‘Look, he’s in this private home’ – don’t believe it.
24:27 Because just as lightning that comes from the east is also visible in the west, so shall be the presence of the Servant of Humanity.
24:28 Because where ever there is a carcass, vultures will gather.
24:29 Immediately after the tribulations of those times the sun will grow dark and the moon will lose its light and the stars will fall from the sky and the power of the heavens will be overthrown.
24:30 And the presence of the Servant of Humanity will be seen in the spiritual realm, and then all of the people of the material world will be sorry as they realize the Servant of Humanity has returned to the spiritual realm with strength and great splendor.
24:31 And His angels will be sent forth with a great sound and they will gather together His chosen from the four corners – from one end of the universe to the other.
24:32 Now learn a lesson from the fig tree: When its branch is still tender and brings forth leaves, you know that summer is near.
24:33 Similarly, when you see all of these things, recognize that He is near – right at the doorway.
24:34 Truly I say to you, this generation will not pass before all of these things take place.2
24:35 The heavens and the earth shall pass away3 but my words will not pass away.
24:36 No one knows that day and hour, not even the angels of the spiritual realm, nor the Representative4 – but only my LORD.
24:37 But just as the days of Noah were, so shall be the presence of the Servant of Humanity.5
24:38 Because just as in the days prior to the flood, there was eating and drinking – marrying and giving in marriage – until the day Noah entered the ark –
24:39 and understood nothing until the flood came and carried them all away – so shall be the presence of the Servant of Humanity.
24:40 Then two will be in the field and one will be taken and the other left behind.
24:41 Two will grind at the mill and one will be taken and the other left behind.
24:42 Watch out therefore, because you do not know what hour your LORD will become present.
24:43 But know this – if the owner of the house had known the time the thief would come – he would have watched and would not have allowed his house to be broken into.6
24:44 Therefore you should also be ready, for you will not know the hour that the Servant of Humanity becomes present.7
24:45 Who then is the faithful and wise servant that his master has made the manager over his household to give them food at the right time?
24:46 Blessed is that servant, whom when his master comes, shall find him so doing.
24:47 Truly I say to you, that he shall make him the master over all of his goods.
24:48 But if a wicked servant should say within himself, ‘My master has been delayed’ –
24:49 and begins to whip his fellow servants and eats and drinks with the drunkards –
24:50 the master of that servant will come at a time when he expects him not, and at an hour he was not expecting –
24:51 and will cut him down and assign him a place with the hypocrites – and there will be weeping and suffering.”


Footnotes:

1. Verse 24:3. The Greek term, παρουσία (parousia) indicates “presence.” συντελείας τοῦ αἰῶνος can mean the end of an era or period of time, but was used by Jesus and his students as indicating the end of one’s life – meaning the time of death. From Jesus’ teachings we understand that Jesus promised to be there for them (be present) at the time of death – to escort them back to the spiritual realm. This is supported by accompanied statements.

2. Verse 24:34. In this context, the word γενεά (genea) – indicates a generation of time – a period of 30 to 35 years.

3. Verse 24:35. The word παρέρχομαι (parerchomai) means to “pass away” when used metaphorically. Here and with 24:29 Jesus is metaphorically discussing the time of death – when the things of the material world disappear (“pass away”) from the view of the self – the soul – as one leaves the body at the time of death. This understanding is confirmed by the next verse, 24:36.

4. Verse 24:36. Later manuscripts deleted, “nor the Representative.”

5. Verse 24:37. The Greek word παρουσία (parousia) indicates “presence” or “appearance.” Jesus speaks of the time of death, when Jesus will appear to his followers, as described in related verses.

6. Verse 24:43. The Greek word οἰκία (oikia) means “an inhabited edifice, a dwelling” according to the lexicon – here translated to “house.” In this context, the “house” represents the physical body and the house being broken into symbolizes the time of death.

7. Verse 24:44. The Greek word ἔρχομαι (erchomai) means, “becoming known" or "be established" or "to come from one place to another." Jesus is indicating that when they leave their physical body at the time of death ("the hour"), Jesus will become present before them.