Jesus spoke in parables and metaphors. He also spoke in ancient Aramaic not English (hopefully that does not come as a surprise!). A parable is a story and a metaphor is an intelligent way of wording a phrase so that it has more than one meaning, such as: “still waters run deep”… that could mean the obvious observation about a body of water, or, it can mean that a quiet person is a deep thinker and you should listen then they speak.
Mark 13, Luke 21, and Matthew 24 can be frightening to read: what exactly is Jesus talking about here?
I’ve presented the same event/conversation in Mark 13, Luke 21, and Matthew 24 in snippets, and then in full below, to allow easy comparison to the vague differences in wording between the three recordings of this conversation.
In the first two verses of all three, his disciples talked about the temple building and Jesus replied with what I believe is a metaphor about the buildings being destroyed:
Mark 13: 1. And as Jesus went out of the temple, one of his disciples said to him, “Teacher, behold, see these stones and these buildings!” 2. Jesus, however, said to him, “Do you see these great buildings? Not one stone shall remain thus upon another stone, without it all being unraveled.”
Luke 21: 5. And as people spoke about the temple, how it was erected with beautiful stones and offerings, Jesus told them. 6. “This that you see, there will come days when no stone shall remain upon another without it being torn down.”
Matthew 24: 1. And Jesus left the temple to go, and his disciples came to show him the temple building. 2. He told them, however, “Behold, do you not see all these? Amen, I am telling you, Not one stone thus shall remain upon another without it being unraveled.”
Is Jesus talking about physical buildings of the temple, or, is he speaking about something much larger: if so, what? Is he talking about his death and resurrection? Some believe that he’s speaking about the end of time when he will return. The remainder of the text of each chapter finds the disciples asking him when these things that he speaks of will happen, and how they will know. This tells me right away, that the disciples knew Jesus was speaking of something much more substantial than the temple buildings themselves.
Jesus directly references the Book of Daniel and his prophecies and dreams about the end of times.
So what does the conversation say about the age we’re living in? Are secrets hidden here about the destruction of the USA? The world? About Obama? About Islam?
It’s a Dangerous time to be a Christian:
Mark 13:13: “And you will be hated by all kinds of people, because of my name. Whoever remains faithful until the end, however, they shall Live.”
Luke 21: 17: “And you will be hated by every person because of my name. 18. “And grace will never desert you.”
Matthew 24: 12: “And because of the great abomination, the love of many will be blown away. 13. “Whoever maintains hope until the end, shall Live.”
Christians are hated today. Anything Christian is being removed from any pubic building in the USA, a country founded by God’s own hand. They do this under the false claim of the Separation of Church and State (read my previous blog post showing why this is a false argument).
Christians are being tortured, raped, sold into slavery, killed in horrible ways in the middle-east and nothing is being done to help them by the Obama administration.
People are being ruined by our own government for things as simple as refusing to bake a cake, or praying at a high school football game… “and you will be hated by all nations because of my name”. At the same time, a Muslim can refuse something on the grounds of their religion and get rewarded.
Christians are hated by all kinds of people these days, especially Muslims. But so are Jews, and Jesus was actually talking to other Jews since Christianity didn’t come about until later, after he had risen from the dead. But I’d say we’re safe grouping them together for this example.
There are other portions of what Jesus is saying that ring true today: genocide, false prophets, war, etc.
Remember that Jesus uses metaphors a lot, so phrases like “and the winters will be long” could mean actual long cold periods, or, more likely, saying the hard times will be long.
Don’t be Misled:
Mark 13: 5. Jesus then began to tell them, “See that no human being mislead you.” 6. “For many will come in my name and will say, it is I and they shall mislead many.”
Luke 21: 8. Then he told them. “Look at what you are seeking, for many will come in my name, saying that I am the Messiah. And the Age is approaching. Do not follow them.”
Matthew 24: 4. Jesus replied and told them, “Beware that no one mislead you”. 5. “For many will come in my name, saying that I am the Messiah, and many will be misled.”
There are many churches these days that have moved away from Jesus’ teachings. There are many false, famous preachers and religious organizations. I have to believe that if Jesus walked into 98% of the churches he would shake his head and ask how we got it so wrong: How did you misuse my words? How did you get my teachings so mixed up? How do you think glorification of the flesh is OK and killing the unborn is OK? Don’t be misled… we were warned, plain and simple.
Mark 13: 14. “Then when you see signs of evil desolation, that which was told by the prophet Daniel, standing where it is not intended, the reader should learn, then those who are in Judea will run to the mountain.
Luke 21: 20. “When you see Jerusalem surrounded by power, know then that its desolation is near.”
Matthew 24: 15. “When you see then the signs of corrupting desolation, that was spoken of by the prophet Daniel, Standing in the holy place, let the reader learn, 16. “Then those that are in Judea, will run to the mountain.
Daniel is hard to understand. As I mentioned in a previous post, I don’t think Iran would actually use a nuclear weapon, however I believe that ISIS would, and they’d use as many as they could get their hands on. And we created ISIS: by “we” I mean the actions of the Bush and Obama administrations, especially Obama… could ISIS be one of the horns that Daniel dreamed about? ISIS is spreading like wildfire and bringing nations to their knees.
I think the two most important things to take away from this are these, and this is where the secrets lie:
Don’t be misled by false prophets: I think this includes not only our churches that have gone astray, but our media complex (news, music stars, movie stars, athletes, etc) that we elevate to almost worshiped status. They mislead us away from Christian values and lifestyles.
Stay true to Christian values and stay alert: Matthew 24:49 “And begins beating his kin, and goes about eating and drinking with drunkards,”. This also includes making sure our nation and government follows Christian values.
1. And as Jesus went out of the temple, one of his disciples said to him, “Teacher, behold, see these stones and these buildings!”
2. Jesus, however, said to him, “Do you see these great buildings? Not one stone shall remain thus upon another stone, without it all being unraveled.”
3. And as Jesus sat upon Mount of Olives, opposite the temple, there asked him Keepa [Peter] and James and John and Andrew, alone by themselves,
4. “Tell us when will these things take place? And what are the signs when all these things are close to being fulfilled?”
5. Jesus then began to tell them, “See that no human being mislead you.
6. “For many will come in my name and will say, it is I* and they shall mislead many.
7. “When you hear of wars and hostile words,* do not fear. For that is destined to occur, except it is not yet the end.
8. “For nation shall rise against nation and kingdom against kingdom, and there will be earthquakes in place after place, and there will be famines and disturbances. These are the beginnings of labor pains.
9. “Be observant then yourselves, for they will deliver you to judges and they will torment you in their assemblies, and before kings and presidents, you will stand because of me, in their testimony.
10. “However, it is destined beforehand that you preach my hope* among all nations.
11. “When they come near to you then, to deliver you, do not go forth at a loss as to what you will say, and do not rehearse, except that which will be given to you in that hour, that is what you are to say. For it will not be you who speaks, except the holy Spirit.
12. “Brother will deliver brother to death, and father to his son, and children will rise against their parents and will kill them.
13. “And you will be hated by all kinds of people,* because of my name. Whoever remains faithful* until the end, however, they shall Live.
14. “Then when you see signs of evil desolation, that which was told by the prophet Daniel, standing where it is not intended*, the reader should learn, then those who are in Judea will run to the mountain.
15. “And whoever is on the roof, shall not go down and will not enter and take anything from inside the house.
16. “And whoever is in the field will not return back to get his clothes.
17. “Woe, however, to those with child,* and those who suckle [babies] in those days.
18. “Pray that your exodus may not be in winter.
19. “For there will be tribulation that has no parallel, from the beginning of Creation that God created and until now, and there never will be again.
20. “And if the Lord did not remember those days, no flesh would ever survive*. Except for the chosen that are chosen, those days will be shortened.
21. “Then when a person tells you that, behold, here is the Messiah, and, behold, right there! Do not believe it.
22. “For there will arise lying messiahs, and cheating prophets, and they will produce signs and wonders, and they will mislead, if possible, even the chosen.
23. “You, however, beware. Behold, I am telling you everything in advance.
24. “In those days, however, after that tribulation, the sun will darken, and the moon will not receive the light.
25. “And there will be shooting stars.* And the powers of heaven will be shaken*.
26. “And then you will see the Son of Man, as he comes in the clouds, together with great power and glory.
27. “And then he will send his angels and gather his chosen from all four spirits, from the top of the earth to the top of heaven.
28. “From the fig tree, however, learn a metaphor, that when its branches grow and its leaves are plentiful, you know that summer has arrived.
29. “Likewise, you also, when you see these things happening, know that the hour has arrived.*
30. “Amen, I am telling you, that this generation will not pass until all these occur.
31. “Heaven and earth will pass away and my words will not pass away.
32. “And about that day and about that hour, no human being shall know, neither the angels in heaven, nor the Son, except if the Father wills it.
33. “Look, be observant and pray, for you do not know the season.
34. “Like the man who sets off and leaves his house and gives authority to his servants, and to each person* his job, and instructs them to watch the door.*
35. “Keep an eye therefore,* as you know not when the master of the house comes, whether in the evening or in the middle of the night or at the crowing of the rooster, or in the morning.
36. “So as he should not come suddenly and find you sleeping.
37. “What I tell you then, I am telling to all of you, be watchful.”
*13:6 Lit. Ar. idiomatic expression: “I am I.”
*13:7 Lit. Ar. idiomatic figures of speech: “Adversarial names.”
*13:10 Lit. Aramaic: “Faithful anticipation.”
*13:13.1 Lit. Ar. idiomatic expression: “From every human [being.]”
*13:13.2 Lit. Ar. idiomatic figures of speech: “Hopes.”
*13:14 Lit. Ar. idiomatic figures of speech: “Lawful,” or “decreed.”
*13:17 Lit. Ar. id.: “Pregnant.”
*13:20 Lit. Ar. idiomatic figures of speech: “Live.”
*13:25.1 Lit. Ar. idiomatic expression: “And the stars will fall from the sky.”
*13:25.2 Lit. Ar. id: “Quake.”
*13:29 Lit. Ar. idiomatic expression: “It is at the door.”
*13:34.1 Lit. Ar. idiomatic expression: “To human [being] human [being.]”
*13:34.2 Lit. Ar. idiomatic expression retained: “To anticipate his return.”
*13:35 Lit. Ar. idiomatic expression: “Observe thus.”
Translation: Ancient Aramaic New Testament by Victor Alexander
5. And as people spoke about the temple, how it was erected with beautiful stones and offerings, Jesus told them.
6. “This that you see, there will come days when no stone shall remain upon another without it being torn down.”
7. And they asked him and said [to him.] “Educator, when will these [events] occur? And what are the signs when these things will happen?”
8. Then he told them. “Look at what you are seeking, for many will come in my name, saying that I am the Messiah. And the Age is approaching. Do not follow them.
9. “And when you hear [of] wars and turmoil, do not succumb. They are bound to happen first. Except you have not reached the end.
10. “For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom,
11. “And there will be great earthquakes in one place after another,* and famines and dying, and there will be submission and interrogations, and you shall see great signs from heaven and the winters will be long*.
12. “But before all these, they will throw on you their hands and they will reject you and deliver you to councils* and prisons, and they will deliver* you before kings and governments because of my name.
13. “This then will become your testimony!
14. “Put* it in your hearts, do not practice learning how to manifest the spirit.
15. “For I will give you a mouth and wisdom, that all your enemies cannot stand in their way.
16. “They will betray you then, your parents, and your brothers and brethren, and your kinsmen, and some of you will die.
17. “And you will be hated by every person because of my name.
18. “And grace will never desert you.*
19. “By the hope that you proffer then, you shall earn your salvation.
20. “When you see Jerusalem surrounded by power, know then that its desolation is near.*
21. “Those who are in Judea will run to the mountain, and those within her will flee and those from the villages will not enter her.
22. “These are the Days of Destiny, so as everything that has been written be fulfilled.
23. “And woe to those who are with child and those who are suckling in those days. For there will be great persecution on the earth and wrath against this nation.
24. “And they shall fall in harm’s way and be taken captive to every country. And Jerusalem shall be trampled by nations until the days of world empire* come to an end.
25. “And there will be signs on the sun and moon and stars and on earth the persecution of nations and you will be disoriented because of the roaring sea waves.
26. “And the quaking that took the lives of people from the fear of what was about to occur on the earth, and the powers of heaven were shaken.
27. “And then you will see the Son of Man who comes in the clouds, with great power and great glory.
28. “When these events begin to occur, take heart and raise your heads, for your salvation has approached.”
29. And he told them a parable, “Look at the fig tree and all the other trees.
30. “When they bloom, at once you understand that summer is near.
31. “And so you too, when you see these things happening, know that the Kingdom of God is approaching.
32. “Amen, I am telling you, this generation will not pass away until all these things occur.
33. “Heaven and earth will pass away and my words will not pass away.
34. “Beware inside yourselves, that you never trouble your hearts, by wasteful living, drunkenness and the cares of this world, and out of the calm [before the storm] that day shall come upon you.
35. “For it will drench everyone like a downpour, all those who inhabit the face of the earth.
36. “Be thus vigilant in every season, in prayer, to be worthy in escaping these things that are destined to occur and to stand up before the Son of Man.”
37. In the daytime he taught at the temple and at night he went out to stay in the mountain that is called Mount* Olives.
38. And all the people came up to him in the temple to hear his word*.
*21:11.1 Lit. Ar. expression: “In one place place.”
*21:11.2 Lit. Ar. idiomatic figure of speech: “Great.”
*21:12.1 Lit. Ar. idiomatic figure of speech: “Synagogues.”
*21:12.2 Lit. Ar. idiomatic figure of speech: “Sacrifice you.”
*21:13 Lit. Ar. id.: “Consecrate.”
*21:18 Lit. Ar. expression: “And gratitude will not leave your head.”
*21:20 Lit. Ar. expression: “Desolation is nearing it.”
*21:24 Lit. Ar. idiomatic figure of speech: “Season of nations.”
*21:37 Lit. Ar. id.: “House of.”
*21:38 Lit. Ar. id.: “Manifestation.”
Translation: Ancient Aramaic New Testament by Victor Alexander
1. And Jesus left the temple to go, and his disciples came to show him the temple building.
2. He told them, however, “Behold, do you not see all these? Amen, I am telling you, Not one stone thus shall remain upon another without it being unraveled.”
3. And as Jesus sat on the mountain, there came to him his disciples, and they were saying amongst themselves and to him “Tell us when will these things occur? And what is the sign that will reveal it to us and end the world?”
4. Jesus replied and told them, “Beware that no one mislead you.
5. “For many will come in my name, saying that I am the Messiah, and many will be misled.
6. “You are destined to hear of hostilities and about wars. Look, do not be confused, and since not everything happens, except this is not yet the end.
7. “For a nation shall rise against nation and kingdoms against kingdoms, And there will be famines and genocide and earthquakes in place after place.
8. “These are the beginnings of the labor pains.
9. “Then they will deliver you to tribulations and they will kill you, And you will be hated by all nations because of my name.
10. “Then many will blaspheme and will hate one another, and betray one another.
11. “And many false prophets will arise, and will mislead many.
12. “And because of the great abomination, the love of many will be blown away.
13. “Whoever maintains hope until the end, shall Live.
14. “And this hope of the Kingdom shall be preached in all the universe, As testimony for all nations, and then the end shall come.
15. “When you see then the signs of corrupting desolation, that was spoken of by the prophet Daniel, Standing in the holy place,let the reader learn,
16. “Then those that are in Judea, will run to the mountain.
17. “And whoever is on the roof, will not get down to secure his house.
18. “And whoever is in the field, will not return to take on his clothing.
19. “Woe, then to those with child and those who are suckling in those days.
20. “Pray then that your exodus shall not occur in winter and not on the Sabbath.
21. “For there shall be great tribulation, such as there never was From the beginning of the universe until now, and it will never be again.
22. “And if those days were not shortened, no flesh would live again. For the sake of the chosen then, those days were shortened.
23. “Then if a human being tells you, ‘Behold, here is the Messiah,’ or ‘There,’ do not believe it.
24. “For there will rise false messiahs and false prophets, and they will give forth signs and wonders, as if to mislead even the chosen.
25. “Behold, I have told you in advance.
26. “If thus they tell you, ‘Behold, he is in the desert,’ do not go out there, Or that, ‘Behold, he is in the inner chamber,’ do not believe it.
27. “Then when lightening strikes from the East, and is seen in the West, thus will be the Coming of the Son of Man,
28. “Where the body is, however, there will gather the eagles.
29. “At once then after the tribulation of those days, the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not shine* And the stars shall fall from the sky and the powers of heaven shall move*.
30. “Then the symbol of the Son of Man will be seen in heaven, Then all the generations of the earth shall writhe and will see the Son of Man Coming on the clouds of heaven, together with great Power and Glory.
31. “And he will send his angels with a great trumpet call and they will gather his chosen from the four spirits, from the heads of heaven until their heads.*
32. “From the fig tree learn a metaphor, that as soon as its branches get longer And its leaves plentiful, you discern that Spring has arrived.
33. “Likewise, when you see all these, understand that I have arrived at the door.
34. “Amen, I am telling you, that this generation will not pass away, until all these things have been fulfilled.
35. “Heaven and earth will pass away, and my words shall not pass away.
36. “Of that day then, and of that hour, no human being shall know, Not even the angels of heaven, except the Father alone.
37. Just as in the days of Noah then, thus it will be the Coming of the Son of Man.
38. “Just as it was before the Flood, they ate and drank and married women And gave into marriage, until the day Noah entered the ark,
39. “And they did not know when the flood would come and take them all, Thus will be the Coming of the Son of Man.
40. “Then, two will be in the village, one will be fetched and the other left.
41. “And two will be grinding in the mill, one will be fetched and one will be left.
42. “Hold the vigil thus, as you do not know at what hour your Master will come.
43. “This then you should know, that if the master of the house knew the watch During which the thief would come, he would not allow the thief to ransack his house.
44. “Because of this, you also rest assured, that in the hour that you did not anticipate, shall come the Son of Man.
45. “Who becomes the faithful and wise servant that the master sets over the members of his house, to bring him produce during season?
46. “Blessed is the servant whose master finds him doing such when he comes.
47. “Amen, I am telling you, that he will raise him over everything he has.
48. “If the servant, who is wicked in his heart, says that, ‘My master will come late,’
49. “And begins beating his kin, and goes about eating and drinking with drunkards,
50. “The master of the servant shall come on that day that he did not expect, and in the hour that he did not know,
51. “And he will tear him in two pieces, and set his portion with that of the hypocrites, where there is wailing and gnashing of teeth.”
*24:29.1 Lit. Ar. idiomatic expression: “Show its light.”
*24:29.2 Lit. Ar. idiomatic figure of speech retained: “Go into action.”
*24:31 Lit. Ar. idiomatic construction retained: “[Of the chosen,] from the highest one in heaven to the highest one above them.”
Translation: Ancient Aramaic New Testament by Victor Alexander
Authors Note: I’ve always been a little suspect of the various translations and wonder what nuances have been lost. I’ve also always been a little suspect of governments that were directly involved in church organizations, such as the Catholic Church and the translations they created: what was intentionally changed under direction of a king or queen for example. That’s why in most of the blog posts I make, I use the Ancient Aramaic New Testament by Victor Alexander. There are some differences in his translation, which I’ve replaced in what I’ve quoted here. He uses Eashoa instead of Jesus (Eashoa is the name he was called in Aramaic), Msheekha instead of Messiah, Maryah instead of Lord, and Allaha instead of God (this is different that what Muslims use). I find Vic’s footnotes are very informative so I’ve included those as well.
Until next time,