1As Jesus was leaving the Temple grounds, his disciples pointed out to him the various Temple buildings.2But he responded, “Do you see all these buildings? I tell you the truth, they will be completely demolished. Not one stone will be left on top of another!”
3Later, Jesus sat on the Mount of Olives. His disciples came to him privately and said, “Tell us, when will all this happen? What sign will signal your dreturn and the end of the world?”
4Jesus told them, “Don’t let anyone mislead you,5for many will come in my name, claiming, ‘I am the Messiah.’ They will deceive many.6And you will hear of wars and threats of wars, but don’t panic. Yes, these things must take place, but the end won’t follow immediately.7Nation will go to war against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in many parts of the world.8But all this is only the first of the birth pains, with more to come.
9“Then you will be arrested, persecuted, and killed. You will be hated all over the world because you are my followers.10And many will turn away from me and betray and hate each other.11And many false prophets will appear and will deceive many people.12Sin will be rampant everywhere, and the love of many will grow cold.13But the one who endures to the end will be saved.14And the Good News about the Kingdom will be preached throughout the whole world, so that all nations will hear it; and then the end will come.
15“The day is coming when you will see what Daniel the prophet spoke about—the sacrilegious object that causes desecration standing in the Holy Place.” (Reader, pay attention!)16“Then those in Judea must flee to the hills.17A person out on the deck of a roof must not go down into the house to pack.18A person out in the field must not return even to get a coat.19How terrible it will be for pregnant women and for nursing mothers in those days.20And pray that your flight will not be in winter or on the Sabbath.21For there will be greater anguish than at any time since the world began. And it will never be so great again.22In fact, unless that time of calamity is shortened, not a single person will survive. But it will be shortened for the sake of God’s chosen ones.
Jesus is beginning a long prophecy section. There have been a lot of attempts at understanding this as partially fulfilled when the Romans destroyed the temple in 66AD and many more claims about it being fulfilled now. I really don’t know and don’t read it that way. I know it is a prohecy and I believe it will be perfectly fulfilled, but I am not going to figure that part of it out. So I have to ask: “What can I learn from it today?”
The temple Herod built was an incredible building, one of the great wonders of the wold, but Jesus disregards it completely and God destroys it. We shouldn’t wonder too much at our own achievements for they are nothing to God and we can lose them in a heart beat.
And we can’t be misled by false Messiahs. This may seem useless to us, but how many times don’t we try to rescue our own lives. We think if we are richer, or skinnier, or with another person, or achieve a certain goal we will be happy. Or our lives are a mess and we turn to everyone but God. I’ve certain done that! No, there is only one savior – Jesus.
Then then we have wars and rumors of wars and a few paragraphs about a time of chaos and hardship. But near the beginning Jesus gives us a command: “but don’t panic”. We are to be people of peace and calmness. Stability in a storm, light house on a rocky shore. And not because we are great, but because we know and trust the one who truly is in control.
Lord, help me to turn away from the stuff of this world and the quick fixes of this world and turn only to You. Let me live in Your peace through all of life’s storms and problems. Change me Lord! Beginner’s Online Bible Study *obbs*