Summary: As we approach the next millennium there is much speculation concerning what is to happen. Do the events in the Bible predict that something will happen at the turn of the millennium?
As we approach the next millennium there is much speculation concerning what is to happen. Most people believe that something terrible is going to take place as we come upon the year 2000. The reasons for this feeling are almost unanimous. You will hear people talk of wars and earthquakes, famines and disease, deception and false prophets. Many say, "All these events are occurring right now!" Therefore, their conclusion is that Christ is going to return at the next millennia.
Have you ever considered what the Bible really says about some of these events? We need to because all these things have to do with our attitude toward God's divine word. If we are going to get all worked up over the year 2000, we must have some basis for doing so. It is the purpose of this article to talk about some of these things. Most of the events mentioned in the first paragraph appear in Matthew chapter 24.
"And you will be hearing of wars and rumors of wars; see that you are not frightened, for those things must take place, but that is not yet the end. "For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom, and in various places there will be famines and earthquakes." (Matthew 24:6-7)
Consider the context
Jesus had just finished His teachings in the temple with the lamentation over Jerusalem as found in the last verses of chapter 23. He goes out from the temple to go to the mount of Olives (Vs. 3). On His way there, His disciples come to Him to show Him the buildings of the temple. Mark mentions particularly that they showed Him the stones, which were very large (Mark 13:1). Luke says that some were talking of the beauty of the stones (Luke 21:5). Josephus (Jewish historian) mentions that some of the stones of the temples' base were 25 cubits long (37 1/2 feet), eight cubits high (12 ft.), and 12 cubits wide (18 ft.).
When the disciples called Jesus' attention to the temple that gave Him an opportunity to say, "not one stone here shall be left upon another, which will not be torn down." (Vs. 2b) Here Jesus predicts the destruction of Jerusalem. Jesus says, "Do you not see all these things?" (Vs. 2a) Attention is called to the seeming permanence and security of the temple and its great stones. It would have appeared to His disciples very unlikely that not one stone would be left upon another. Within 40 years from the time of this prophecy, however, it was fulfilled. History tells us that Vespasian and his son Titus besieged Jerusalem for three years and it was taken in 70 A.D..
Questions Of The Disciples
As Jesus sat on the Mount of Olives and predicted this destruction, the disciples asked Jesus two questions. 1) When will these things be? and 2) What will be the sign of your coming and of the end of the age? The remainder of chapters 24 and 25 give Jesus' answer to these questions. Let us look at His response to these questions. It is good for us to keep these questions in mind and apply the answer of Jesus to each question in order. Otherwise, we will become confused and end up drawing the wrong conclusions.