This is the sermon series I am working on for the summer at Bethany EFC .
How often have you heard about wars, earthquakes and other natural disasters being signs that we are at the end of days. One has to notice some things – we can capture more of these events than in past decades because of the advance of technology. Are there more earthquakes? Are there more by you or in the world at large?
Then when I read Matthew 24, there is a list of “signs” that do not indicate the end of days. I have compared my listed and compared it to R. T. France and Craig Blomberg and here they are
NOT SIGNS OF THE END – Matthew 24
- False Messiahs v. 5
- Wars and Rumors of wars v.6
- International Hostility v. 7a
- Famines and Earthquakes v. 7b
- Persecution and martyrdom v. 9
- Apostasy and betrayal v. 10
- False Prophets v. 11
- Cold spiritual life v. 12
- The Extension of the Gospel v. 14
Note in verse 6. “but the end is not yet” and v. 8 “these are the beginning of the birth pains.” Verse 13 talks of persevering through these signs to the end and v. 14 speaks of the end coming after all of these, but not how soon after.
Several have noted that by 70 AD all of these things had occurred. That year was marked by the destruction of the Temple in Jerusalem. So it would seem to be that these are signs of normalcy in the age between Christ and his return. It would seem that these signs do not tell us how close the end us, but to remind us that there is an end. As I like to quote Bob Dylan, “there’s a slow train coming.”