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Bible Commentaries

Gann's Commentary on the Bible

Matthew 24

Verse 1

Matthew 24:1 // Mark 13; and Luke 21

PRE-Matt. 24 Parables and Prophesies -- Matthew 22:1 ff v 7 ; A king who made a marriage for his son.

Parable of the vineyard -- Matthew 21:33

Other prophecies about Jerusalem: Luke 19:41-44; Luke 23:28-30

Mark 13:1, Luke 21:5, Josephus says some stones were 70 ft long, and 12 ft high and 18 feet in breath.

Many gifts given to adorn the temple. Crowns, shields, goblets, chains of gold, from Agrippa and from Jews around the world.

Also see the notes:

Matt 24 Importance of the Destruction of Jerusalem

Verse 2

Luke 19:41-44

"Verily I say..." Jesus was a prophet. Cf. Deuteronomy 18:15

Stephen preached what Jesus taught in Acts 6:14.

Paul taught what Jesus preached - Acts 21:28

IMPORTANCE OF THE DESTRUCTION OF JERUSALEM

Matthew 24; Mark 13; Luke 21

I. It Was a Day of "The End of the Age"

Matthew 24:3; Hebrews 9:26; 1 Corinthians 10:11; 1 Peter 4:7

A. The End of Civil Judiasm

1. The Cross ended the Law. Colossians 2:14, Ephesians 2:15-16

2. After Pentecost the Nation of Israel contined to exist.

3. A.D. 70 brought an end to civil Judiasm. Matthew 1:1

B. The End of the Physical Temple (A.D. 70) Matthew 1:1

C. The End of the Physical Priesthood of Levites. (Revelation 1:1; Revelation 5:10 )

D. The End of the Jews as the Seed (kingdom) of Abraham Romans 9:6-7

E. The End of the Sonship of Jews

II. It Was a Day of Witness __ Matthew 24:14

A. It Bore Witness that Christians are God’s Israel today.

Romans 2:28-29; Romans 4:12-14 ; Romans 9:4-8

B. It Bore Witness to the Church as the Spiritual Temple of God

1 Corinthians 3:16-17; 1 Timothy 3:15; 1 Peter 2:5

C. It Bore Witness to Christians as a Nation of Priests Today. -- 1 Peter 2:5, 1 Peter 2:9 ; Revelation 1:6; Revelation 5:10

D. It Bore Witness As to Who is the Seed of Abraham Today -- Romans 4:12-14

E. It Bore Witness as to Who are the Sons of God Today. -- 1 John 3:1 Revelation 1:1

F. It Bore Witness to Jesus as the Great Prophet of Whom Moses Spoke.

Deuteronomy 18:15f. Acts 3:22-24 (John 4:20-21)

G. It Bore Witness to the N.T. Prophets as His Messengers.

Hebrews 9:26; 1 Peter 4:7; 1 John 2:18; 1 Corinthians 4:9

H. It Bore Witness to the NT Scriptures as the Revealed Word of God

Matthew 24:1; Mark 13:1; Luke 21:1

I. It Bore Witness to all the Christian Martyres as His Servants.

Acts 6:12-14; Acts 7:58-60 ; Revelation 2:13

J. It Bore Witness to the Fact that Jesus was Not in a Grave somewhere,

But that He was Indeed Resurrected and Sitting at the Right of God. Matthew 24:30

III. It Was A Day of Vengenance

A. Matthew 23:33-46 Foretold by the parable of the wicked husbandmen.

B. Matthew 23:34 Jerusalem would be held responsible for the blood of all

the righteous prophets they had killed. (Luke 11:49-50)

1. Luke 18:7-8 God will avenge his elect which cry out to him day and night. (See Revelation 6:10).

2. Luke 21:20-22 In speaking of Jerusalem’s destruction the Lord said, "For these be

the days of vengeance, that all things which are written may be fulfilled."

3. In speaking of God’s Judgment against the Harlot Babylon we read Revelation 18:20 "Rejoice over her, thou heaven and ye holy apostles and prophets; for God hath avenged you on her." Revelation 18:24 "And in her was found the blood of prophets, and of saints."

(See Revelation 1:1) Luke 11:42-51

C. His Vengenance on the Persecutors (Revelation 6:9-11; Revelation 18:20

E. His Assurance of final vengenance on all others. Luke 21:22; Romans 1:1; Romans 13:4; Romans 16:20

F. His assurance of Deliverance to all the faithful.

1. Matthew 24:15-20; Mark 13:14-20; Luke 21:20-21

2. Eusebuius tells how the Christians, heeding the prophecy of Jesus, fled Jerusalem for Pella beyond the Jordan before its fall.

IV. It Was a Day of Assurance of Final Victory to all the Faithful.

(The theme of the entire book of Revelation.)

V. It Was A Day That Made Obvious the Cornoration of Jesus.

Acts 13:33; Hebrews 1:5; Matthew 24:30; Psalms 24:7-10; Mark 16:19; 1 Peter 3:22; Hebrews 10:12-13; 1 Corinthians 15:24-25;

Verse 3

Matthew 24:3 // Luke 23:28-30

the disciples .... Peter James John, Andrew ... The inner circle of apostles. Mark 13:3

Is this one question in 3 parts, or two different questions? See Mark 13:4 for the answer to this. It was ALL one question! Luke 21:7

(Note the verses on the various "comings" of Christ, at the end of this note.)

"What shall be the sign of thy coming" to fulfill these things? The destruction was called "the end of the world [age]"

"The end of the world" or "age". v. 6, v. 14. The destruction of the city and the temple meant to them the "end" of an age, or era. Hebrews 9:26, 1 Corinthians 10:11, 1 Peter 4:7, Hebrews 10:37.

- - - - - -

Some Various Comings of Christ

*1 Emmanuel, Matthew 1:23; John 1:14; John 6:38; Galatians 4:4 This was the coming of the Lord in the flesh, his birth at Bethlehem.

2 Pentecost,; Matthew 16:28 (Mark 9:1) Mark 14:62, Matthew 26:64 In some significant way it could be said that Christ also came on Pentecost representatively when he sent his promise of the Holy Spirit.

3 To Paul at His Conversion __ Acts 26:16, Acts 22:7-9 ; 1 Corinthians 15:8 The Lord came to Paul so he could see him alive after his crucifixion and thus qualify him to be an apostle.

4 In Visions -- At Jerusalem, Acts 22:17-18 (after conversion); At Corinth, Acts 18:9; again at Jerusalem, Acts 23:11

5 AD 70, His coming in judgment upon the Jews for their rejection. Matthew 24:27, Matthew 24:30, Matthew 24:44, Matthew 24:39; Mark 13:26-30; Luke 21:20-27; Hebrews 10:37; James 5:8 This brought an end to their nation, the temple, the physical priesthood coming from Levi, the end of animal sacrifices, etc.

*6 The Resurrection Day (His Second Coming, -- Cf. Last Day) 1 Thessalonians 4:13 - 5:11; 1 Corinthians 15:23-24 ff; John 14:1-3; John 5:28; John 11:24 ; John 6:39; John 6:40; John 6:44; John 12:48

* We usually speak of these two as his "first" and "second" coming.

Verse 4

Matthew 24:4

"You", who asked the question, Peter, James & John, and Andrew Mark 13:3.

Compare Mark 13 -- False Signs

1. False Christs and false prophets (miracles) - Mark 13:6, 22; Mt 24:6, 13-14, 33

2. Wars and rumors of wars - Mark 13:7

3. Earthquakes Mark 13:8

4. Famines -- Mark 13:8

These are NOT signs of the END - Matthew 24:6. Don’t be deceived!

5. Troubles, persecutions, (apostasy) -- Mark 13:9-14, 14

6. Gospel first preached among the nations - Matthew 24:10

The REAL sign was Matthew 24:15.

"the End" - not of the world, kosmos, but of the Jewish state and Jerusalem.

The Nation Israel began in Egypt and ended at AD 70.

The Mosaic law began at Mt. Sinai and ended at Calvary.

Verse 5

Matthew 24:5

come in my name ... false Christs

Verse 6

Matthew 24:6

"wars"... wars that were a threat of the Jews

"but the end is not yet" -- Hebrews 9:26; 1 Corinthians 10:11; 1 Peter 4:7

The end -- not the end of the world, but the end of the temple, the Jewish state, and Jerusalem. cf. Matthew 24:14 Matthew 24:3

Verse 7

Matthew 24:7

"earthquakes" ... five great earthquakes are recorded in that NT geographical area in that first century.

Verse 9

Matthew 24:9

Matthew 24:9 // Mark 13:9; Luke 21:12

Persecution of Christians - cf. Acts 4:3; Acts 5:18, 40; Acts 7:59, Acts 12:1-2; Acts 14:19; Acts 16:19-24; Acts 22:26; Acts 24:1; Acts 25:2-3;

Tacitus bears testimony to the hatred and bigotry of the age when he speaks of Christians as "a class of men hated on account of their crimes." Annals 15:44. Also Suetonius on Nero (ch. 16); and Pliny (Ep 10:97);

Verse 11

Matthew 24:11

False Teachers in the church -- 2 Corinthians 11:13-15; Galatians 2:1-4; 1 Timothy 1:3-7, 1 Timothy 1:19-20; 2 Timothy 3:8-9; Titus 1:10-11

Verse 12

Matthew 24:12

There would be many false teachers, and many would not endure and hold on faithfully to the truth.

Love growing cold ...Revelation 2:4

Verse 13

Matthew 24:13 // Luke 21:18

From the parallel one sees something of the salvation of which he is speaking.

Revelation 2:10 "endureing faithful to death"

Romans 11:25 Good news -- that the destruction was a witness to the world of certain things... a witness of what?

Verse 14

Matthew 24:14

Gospel preached in all the world ...Colossians was penned about AD 63 -- Colossians 1:23; Romans 11:25; Romans 1:8 ; Romans 10:18; This was to be done before the "end" Jesus was telling Peter, James, John and Andrew about, Matthew 24:3.

Witness -- that Jesus’ testimony is sure, accurate, his prophecy fulfilled. Luke 13:35. The destruction of the temple to be a testimony that God’s apostles were right in their preaching. XXX

Verse 15

Matthew 24:15

The abomination of desolation... the abomination that brings destruction. Jesus is speaking of the Roman army that would suround the city, Mark 13:14; Luke 21:20; See note:

Abomination of desolation by Daniel -- Daniel 9:27, Daniel 11:31; Daniel 12:11

1 Peter 4:7, "the end is at hand" (From John and Jesus’ use of "at hand", we can get a fell for the possible time duration meant by the phrase.

REAL SIGN:

1) WHEN the Gospel would be preached in all the world, and

2) WHEN ye see v. 15.

Verse 16

Matthew 24:16

flee ... Luke 21:20-21; Josephus says that many immient people left Jerusalem after the first withdrawal of the Roman troops, AD 67. Josephus II, 19 (page 497) Eusebius, Bk3 ch 5, p. 86.

Verse 17

Matthew 24:17

The stairs from the roof were outside the house. Could descend without going through the house.

Verse 18

Matthew 24:18

The outter garment was pulled off as the day heated up, and left at the end of the field as they continued to work.

Verse 20

Matthew 24:20

Cestius surrounded the city in Oct AD 67 and withdrew. This was the signal to the church (via Jesus’ prophesy) and it then fled beyound to Jordan to Pella.

Winter ... the streams would be flooded and escape more diffcult.

Not on the sabbath ... lest the gates be closed and they couldn’t get out.

Verse 21

Matthew 24:21

Great tribulation ... Cf. Revelation 1:9; Revelation 7:14; Mark 13:19; also 1 Peter 4:12

Great tribulation -- The account given by Josephus, the Jewish historian who witnessed and recorded the war, is almost an echo of the predictions of Christ. Women ate their own children from starvation; the Jews within the city fought each other as well as the Roman army; on August 10, A.D. 70, the city was stormed and there was a universal massacre; 1,100,00 persons perished, and 100,000 survivors were sold into slavery. - PNT

Verse 22

Matthew 24:22

Except days be shortened ... The persecution by the Jews against the Christians was so sever that unless the Lord steped in to halt it the Christians may be all killed. Cf. 1 Peter 4:17-18. cf. Revelation 12:12

cf Jerome Biblical Commentary: The “salvation,” which no one would attain unless the time of tribulation were shortened, does not mean spiritual salvation but escape from death; unless God mercifully shortened the time (Mt in Jewish style uses the impersonal “theological” passive instead of the divine name [ GrBib § 236]), no one would have escaped alive from this disaster. The narrative of Josephus does indeed indicate a terrible loss of life in the Palestinian Jewish community.

Verse 24

Matthew 24:24

FALSE TEACHERS - 2 Corinthians 11:13-15, 2 Timothy 4:2-4, 1 Timothy 4:1-3, Matthew 24:24, Acts 20:28-30, Galatians 1:7-9, Deuteronomy 18:21-22.

To Support false teachers is Sinful- 2 John 1:10-11.

Verse 27

Matthew 24:27

Coming of the Son ... at the destruction of the temple and of Jerusalem, cf. Matthew 24:3.

Cf. Hebrews 10:37, Luke 21:27-28

See the Revelation PowerPoint presention about the "Various Comings of Jesus Christ"

Some Various Comings of Christ

*1 Emmanuel, Matthew 1:23; John 1:14; John 6:38; Galatians 4:4 This was the coming of the Lord in the flesh, his birth at Bethlehem.

2 Pentecost, Matthew 16:28 (Mark 9:1) Mark 14:62, Matthew 26:64 In some significant way it could be said that Christ also came on Pentecost representatively when he sent his promise of the Holy Spirit.

3 To Paul at His Conversion __ Acts 26:16, Acts 22:7-9 ; 1 Corinthians 15:8 The Lord came to Paul so he could see him alive after his crucifixion and thus qualify him to be an apostle.

4 In Visions -- To Paul at Jerusalem, Acts 22:17-18 (after conversion); At Corinth, Acts 18:9; again at Jerusalem, Acts 23:11

5 AD 70, His coming in judgment upon the Jews for their rejection. Matthew 24:27, Matthew 24:30, Matthew 24:44, Matthew 24:39; Mark 13:26-30; Luke 21:20-27; Hebrews 10:37; James 5:8

This brought an end to their nation, the temple, the physical priesthood coming from Levi, the end of animal sacrifices, etc. ("Last days"[of the Jewish dispensation] plural)

*6 The Resurrection Day (His Second Coming, -- Cf. "Last Day" singular) 1 Thessalonians 4:13 ff to 1 Thessalonians 5:11; 1 Corinthians 15:23-24 ff; John 14:1-3;

John 5:28; John 11:24; John 6:39; John 6:40; John 6:44;

Verse 29

Matthew 24:29

Tribulation ... see Matthew 24:21

Tribulation - Revelation 7:14; Revelation 1:9

Sun ... Isaiah 13:10; (Jeremiah 15:9; Ezekiel 32:8; Joel 2:10)

Moon ... Isaiah 13:10; (Isaiah 24:23; Ezekiel 32:7; Joel 2:10; Joel 3:15)

Stars ... Isaiah 13:10; (Isaiah 14:12 margin; Ezekiel 32:7; Haggai 2:6;)

See Hebrews 12:26

Powers ... same verses above.

Cf. Acts 2:19; (Ezekiel was speaking about Egypt)

Verse 30

And then shall appear . . That is, when the temple is destroyed, the sign that the Son of Man (the Christ) is in heaveen (reigning). (Mark 16:19; Ephesians 6:9; Colossians 4:1; 1 Corinthians 15:25; 1 John 5:7; Acts 3:20-21; in parable form Luke 19:14; Luke 19:27)

The sign . . . The fulfilllment of Jesus prophecy of the fall the Jerusalem and the temple was evidence, indication, that the "Son of Man", the Christ or Messiah, had come already and was now in heaven.

The NASV, NIV really missed the Greek order of words. In this case, the KJV correctly follows the exact Greek order of the words. "And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven"

Kik writes, "There has been misunderstanding due to the [mis-] reading of this verse, as some have thought it to be ’a sign in heaven.’ But this is not what the verse says; it says ’the sign of the Son of Man in heaven.’" The phrase "in heaven" defines the locality of the Son, not the location of the sign. A sign was not to appear in the heavens, but the destruction of Jerusalem was to indicae the rule of the Son of man in heaven. - Barfield, p. 36

Barfield gives as an example: "A similar difficulty in wording occurs in the book of Hebrews where the text says that Moses refused to be call "the daughter of Pharaoh’s son." Read the emphasis on "daughter" the text seems to say that Moses was a female. On the other hand, when reading "daughter of Pharaoh’s" as a phrase, it becomes clear that Moses was a male child. - Barfield

sign . . "A token", indication, from Vine. The fulfillment of Matt 24 itself was a "sign" that Jesus (the messiah) was in heaven. cf. Matthew 24:34.

NOT a sign in the SKY (Jeremiah 10:2-3), such are worthless, cf Jeremiah 10:2 NIV. The misunderstanding comes from a supposed vision by Constantine who saw a "cross" in the sky, and legalized Christianity. Many try to translate this verse to make it appliable to that event.

Acts 3:20-21 And Peter and the rest could bear witness that He was gone into heaven, His work on earth being finished. - CBSC

Verse 31

Matthew 24:31

Angels ... Matthew 11:10; Mark 1:2; Luke 7:24, Luke 7:27; Luke 9:52; James 2:5;

"messenger" Matthew 11 calles John the Baptist and "angel". We see the spread of Christianity by the messengers of God into every nation. Isaiah 18:3; Isaiah 27:13; Hosea 8:1; Zechariah 9:14.

The fall of Jerusalem signaled a renewed evangelistic thrust by Christians.

Verse 33

Matthew 24:33

"Ye" ... Peter, James John and Andrew.

"It" ... the end, spoken of in Matthew 24:14.

Verse 34

Matthew 24:34

Full listing of "this generation"

Matthew 11:16; Matthew 12:41, Matthew 12:42, Matthew 12:45; Matthew 23:36;

Mark 8:12; Mark 8:38; Luke 11:30, Luke 11:31-32; Luke 11:50-51;Luke 17:25

Acts 2:40

Jesus puts a time to this prophecy.

NIV and NASB show their premillenial bias here by translating "this generation" to "race" in the footnote. Other premillenial biased publications such at the BBC and BKC attempt to make it a different "generation" from the one that Jesus said was all alive there in his day (Matthew 23:36; Mark 9:1; Matthew 24:34; Matthew 16:28; Luke 11.50; Luke 21:32;) What Jesus was talking about was coming to come to pass in the lifetime of those present hearing him speak.

Verse 35

Matthew 24:35

earth -- ἡ γῆ Thayer: the fround; the earth in reference to physical planet.

Verse 36

Matthew 24:36

day and hour ... 1) of Jerusalem’s fall, but it was a type of the Final Coming also, so this would be true of the Lord’s second coming and final judgment. 2) of the time when "heaven and earth" would pass away (Matthew 24:35).

*** WG would understand #2 because the Lord gave signs when the destruction of Jerusalem would come about, but there are no signs when the earth would come to pass away. The destruction of Jerusalem would be Jesus’ generation, but it is unknown when the earth will pass away, only the Father knows.

[Some say, "I’ve read Daniel, Ezekiel, and Revelation and I say the earth will end in 1988!" But Jesus had read Daniel, Ezekiel and wrote Revelation and said HE didn’t know!]

Verse 37

Matthew 24:37

days of Noah ... a general statement of all judgments.

Verse 38

Matthew 24:38

eating -- marrying ... The point seems to be that ordinary daily life was going on. People will be caught by surprise.

Verse 39

Matthew 24:39

The points seems to be that ordinary daily life would be going on and they would be caught by surprise or unaware, paying no attention.

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Bibliographical Information
Gann, Windell. "Commentary on Matthew 24". Gann's Commentary on the Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/gbc/matthew-24.html. 2021.