Matthew 24

1 And Jesus went out of the temple [And Jesus gone out of the temple, went]; and his disciples came to him, to show him the buildings of the temple.
2 But he answered, and said to them, See ye all these things? Truly I say to you, a stone shall not be left here on one stone, that not it shall be destroyed [Truly I say to you, a stone shall not be left here on a stone, which shall not destroyed].
3 And when he sat on the mount of Olives, his disciples came to him privily, and said [saying], Say to us, when these things shall be, and what token of thy coming, and of the ending of the world.
4 And Jesus answered, and said to them, Look ye [See ye], that no man deceive you.
5 For many shall come in my name, and shall say, I am Christ [For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ]; and they shall deceive many.
6 For ye shall hear battles, and opinions of battles; see ye that ye be not disturbed [see ye, that ye be not distroubled]; for it behooveth these things to be done, but not yet is the end.
7 For folk shall rise together against folk, and realm against realm, and pestilences, and hungers, and earth-movings shall be by places;
8 and all these be beginnings of sorrows.
9 Then men shall betake you into tribulation, and shall slay you, and ye shall be in hate to all folks for my name. [Then they shall betake you into tribulation, and they shall slay you, and ye shall be in hatred to all folks for my name.]
10 And then many shall be caused to stumble [And then many shall be offended], and [they shall] betray each other, and they shall hate each other.
11 And many false prophets shall rise, and [they shall] deceive many.
12 And for wickedness shall be plenteous, the charity of many shall wax cold;
13 but he that shall dwell still into the end, shall be safe. [+forsooth he that shall dwell stable/steadfast unto the end, this shall be safe.]
14 And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world, in [into] witnessing to all folks; and then the end shall come.
15 Therefore when ye see the abomination of discomfort [Therefore when ye shall see the abomination of discording], that is said of Daniel, the prophet, standing in the holy place; he that readeth, understand he [he that readeth, understand];
16 then they that be in Judaea, flee to the mountains;
17 and he that is in the house roof, come not down to take any thing of his house;
18 and he that is in the field, turn not again to take his coat.
19 But woe to them that be with child, and nourishing in those days [and nursing in those days].
20 [Soothly] Pray ye, that your flying be not made in winter, or in the sabbath.
21 For then shall be great tribulation, what manner was not from the beginning of the world to now [what manner was not from the beginning of the world till now], neither shall be made.
22 And but those days had been abridged, each flesh should not be made safe [+And but those days had been abridged, all flesh, that is mankind, should not be made safe/had not be saved]; but those days shall be made short, for the chosen men.
23 Then if any man [shall] say to you, Lo! here is Christ, or there, do not ye believe.
24 For false Christs and false prophets shall rise, and they shall give great tokens and wonders [and they shall give great signs and wonders]; so that also the chosen be led into error, if it may be done.
25 Lo! I have before-said to you.
26 Therefore if they [shall] say to you, Lo! he is in desert, do not ye go out; lo! he is in privy places [lo! in privy chambers, or places], do not ye believe.
27 For as lightning goeth out from the east, and appeareth [till] into the west, so shall be also the coming of man's Son.
28 Where ever the body shall be, also the eagles shall be gathered thither.
29 And at once [Forsooth anon] after the tribulation of those days, the sun shall be made dark, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the virtues of heavens shall be moved [and the virtues of heavens shall be stirred].
30 And then the token of man's Son shall appear in heaven, and then all the kindreds of the earth shall wail [and then all the kindreds, or lineages, of the earth shall wail]; and they shall see man's Son coming in the clouds of heaven, with much virtue and majesty.
31 And he shall send his angels with a trumpet, and a great voice; and they shall gather his chosen from four winds, from the highest things of heaven to the ends of them. [And he shall send his angels with a trump, and great voice; and they shall gather his chosen from four winds, from the highest things of heavens till to the terms, or ends, of them.]
32 And learn ye the parable of the fig tree. When his branch is now tender, and the leaves be sprung, ye know that summer is nigh;
33 so and ye when ye shall see all these things [so also when ye shall see all these things], know ye that it is nigh, in the gates.
34 Truly I say to you, for this generation shall not pass, till all things be done;
35 heaven and earth shall pass, but my words shall not pass.
36 But of that day and hour no man knoweth, neither [the] angels of heaven [neither the angels of heavens], but the Father alone.
37 But as it was in the days of Noe, so shall be [also] the coming of man's Son.
38 For as in the days before the great flood, they were eating and drinking, wedding and taking to wedding, till that day [till into the day], that Noe entered into the ship;
39 and they knew not, till the great flood came, and took all men, so shall be the coming of man's Son.
40 Then twain shall be in a field [Then two shall be in a field], one shall be taken, and the other left;
41 two women shall be grinding in a quern [two women shall be grinding in one mill], one shall be taken, and the other left; twain in a bed [two in a bed], the one shall be taken, and the other left.
42 Therefore wake ye, for ye know not in what hour the Lord shall come. [Therefore wake ye, for ye know not in what hour your Lord is to come.]
43 But know ye this, that if the husbandman knew in what hour the thief were to come [for if the husbandman knew in what hour the thief should come], certainly he would wake, and suffer not his house to be undermined.
44 And therefore [also] be ye ready [Therefore and ye be ready], for in what hour ye guess not, man's Son shall come.
45 Who guessest thou is a true servant and prudent [Who guessest thou is a faithful servant and prudent], whom his lord ordained on his household, to give them meat in time?
46 Blessed is that servant, whom his lord, when he shall come [when he come], shall find so doing.
47 Truly I say to you, for on [upon] all his goods he shall ordain him.
48 But if that evil servant [shall] say in his heart, My lord tarrieth to come,
49 and beginneth to smite his even-servants [and shall begin to smite his even-servants], and to eat, and drink with drunken men;
50 the lord of that servant shall come in the day [in] which he hopeth not, and in the hour that he knoweth not,
51 and shall part him (in pieces), and put his part with hypocrites; there shall be weeping, and grinding of teeth [there shall be weeping, and beating together of teeth].

Matthew 24 Commentary

Chapter 24

Christ foretells the destruction of the temple. (1-3) The troubles before the destruction of Jerusalem. (4-28) Christ foretells other signs and miseries, to the end of the world. (29-41) Exhortations to watchfulness. (42-51)

Verses 1-3 Christ foretells the utter ruin and destruction coming upon the temple. A believing foresight of the defacing of all worldly glory, will help to keep us from admiring it, and overvaluing it. The most beautiful body soon will be food for worms, and the most magnificent building a ruinous heap. See ye not all these things? It will do us good so to see them as to see through them, and see to the end of them. Our Lord having gone with his disciples to the Mount of Olives, he set before them the order of the times concerning the Jews, till the destruction of Jerusalem; and as to men in general till the end of the world.

Verses 4-28 The disciples had asked concerning the times, When these things should be? Christ gave them no answer to that; but they had also asked, What shall be the sign? This question he answers fully. The prophecy first respects events near at hand, the destruction of Jerusalem, the end of the Jewish church and state, the calling of the Gentiles, and the setting up of Christ's kingdom in the world; but it also looks to the general judgment; and toward the close, points more particularly to the latter. What Christ here said to his disciples, tended more to promote caution than to satisfy their curiosity; more to prepare them for the events that should happen, than to give a distinct idea of the events. This is that good understanding of the times which all should covet, thence to infer what Israel ought to do. Our Saviour cautions his disciples to stand on their guard against false teachers. And he foretells wars and great commotions among nations. From the time that the Jews rejected Christ, and he left their house desolate, the sword never departed from them. See what comes of refusing the gospel. Those who will not hear the messengers of peace, shall be made to hear the messengers of war. But where the heart is fixed, trusting in God, it is kept in peace, and is not afraid. It is against the mind of Christ, that his people should have troubled hearts, even in troublous times. When we looked forward to the eternity of misery that is before the obstinate refusers of Christ and his gospel, we may truly say, The greatest earthly judgments are but the beginning of sorrows. It is comforting that some shall endure even to the end. Our Lord foretells the preaching of the gospel in all the world. The end of the world shall not be till the gospel has done its work. Christ foretells the ruin coming upon the people of the Jews; and what he said here, would be of use to his disciples, for their conduct and for their comfort. If God opens a door of escape, we ought to make our escape, otherwise we do not trust God, but tempt him. It becomes Christ's disciples, in times of public trouble, to be much in prayer: that is never out of season, but in a special manner seasonable when we are distressed on every side. Though we must take what God sends, yet we may pray against sufferings; and it is very trying to a good man, to be taken by any work of necessity from the solemn service and worship of God on the sabbath day. But here is one word of comfort, that for the elect's sake these days shall be made shorter than their enemies designed, who would have cut all off, if God, who used these foes to serve his own purpose, had not set bounds to their wrath. Christ foretells the rapid spreading of the gospel in the world. It is plainly seen as the lightning. Christ preached his gospel openly. The Romans were like an eagle, and the ensign of their armies was an eagle. When a people, by their sin, make themselves as loathsome carcasses, nothing can be expected but that God should send enemies to destroy them. It is very applicable to the day of judgment, the coming of our Lord Jesus ( 2 Thessalonians. 2:1 ) calling and election sure; then may we know that no enemy or deceiver shall ever prevail against us.

Verses 29-41 Christ foretells his second coming. It is usual for prophets to speak of things as near and just at hand, to express the greatness and certainty of them. Concerning Christ's second coming, it is foretold that there shall be a great change, in order to the making all things new. Then they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds. At his first coming, he was set for a sign that should be spoken against, but at his second coming, a sign that should be admired. Sooner or later, all sinners will be mourners; but repenting sinners look to Christ, and mourn after a godly sort; and those who sow in those tears shall shortly reap in joy. Impenitent sinners shall see Him whom they have pierced, and, though they laugh now, shall mourn and weep in endless horror and despair. The elect of God are scattered abroad; there are some in all places, and all nations; but when that great gathering day comes, there shall not one of them be missing. Distance of place shall keep none out of heaven. Our Lord declares that the Jews should never cease to be a distinct people, until all things he had been predicting were fulfilled. His prophecy reaches to the day of final judgment; therefore he here, ver. 34, foretells that Judah shall never cease to exist as a distinct people, so long as this world shall endure. Men of the world scheme and plan for generation upon generation here, but they plan not with reference to the overwhelming, approaching, and most certain event of Christ's second coming, which shall do away every human scheme, and set aside for ever all that God forbids. That will be as surprising a day, as the deluge to the old world. Apply this, first, to temporal judgments, particularly that which was then hastening upon the nation and people of the Jews. Secondly, to the eternal judgment. Christ here shows the state of the old world when the deluge came. They were secure and careless; they knew not, until the flood came; and they believed not. Did we know aright that all earthly things must shortly pass away, we should not set our eyes and hearts so much upon them as we do. The evil day is not the further off for men's putting it far from them. What words can more strongly describe the suddenness of our Saviour's coming! Men will be at their respective businesses, and suddenly the Lord of glory will appear. Women will be in their house employments, but in that moment every other work will be laid aside, and every heart will turn inward and say, It is the Lord! Am I prepared to meet him? Can I stand before him? And what, in fact, is the day of judgment to the whole world, but the day of death to every one?

Verses 42-51 To watch for Christ's coming, is to maintain that temper of mind which we would be willing that our Lord should find us in. We know we have but a little time to live, we cannot know that we have a long time to live; much less do we know the time fixed for the judgment. Our Lord's coming will be happy to those that shall be found ready, but very dreadful to those that are not. If a man, professing to be the servant of Christ, be an unbeliever, covetous, ambitious, or a lover of pleasure, he will be cut off. Those who choose the world for their portion in this life, will have hell for their portion in the other life. May our Lord, when he cometh, pronounce us blessed, and present us to the Father, washed in his blood, purified by his Spirit, and fit to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light.

Matthew 24 Commentaries