Sunday, January 16, 2011

And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in all the world as a witness to all the nations, and then the end.

Jesus said "And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in all the world as a witness to all the nations, and then the end will come. (Matthew 24:14)

In Matthew 24, Jesus is walking with the disciples and he tells them that the then beloved temple would see a end. The meaning for them would be profound because within that system they maintained a relationship with God, (the shekinah glory) the place of the daily sacrifice Israel’s place in election, status as the priests and lights of God.

They asked Jesus when the end of the world as they knew it would be, and he shared He explained some signs that would happen before the end (vs 5-28)

Many maintain that the specifics of 24:14 are yet to be fulfilled because "whole world" means the entire globe as we know it today, and "all the nations" means all the nations that are in existence today. Since the gospel did not reach the entire globe prior to that first-century generation passing away, this passage awaits an end-time fulfillment.

What most modern commentaries fail to inform readers that in Matthew 24:14 the English "whole world" in 24:14 is based on the Greek word oikoumene which is best translated "inhabited earth." Most modern translations (e.g., NASV and NIV) translate oikoumene in Luke 2:1 as "the inhabited earth." This means that the gospel of Matthew 24:14 had to go no further than the census decreed by Caesar Augustus in Luke 2:1. One of the Definitions of the Strong's Number: 3625 is the Roman empire, all the subjects of the empire.

Remember what Luke wrote in regards to the famine in Acts 11:27-29. Then one of them, named Agabus, stood up and showed by the Spirit that there was going to be a (great famine throughout all the world, which also happened in the days of Claudius Caesar). Luke also used the entire globe to describe the famine in the days of the Roman under Claudius Caesar.

The use of "all the nations" is not always a reference to every nation on earth. In many cases it refers only to those known nations in which one could travel (Matt. 24:9; Acts 2:5).

"The end" to which Jesus refers to in 24:14 is the same end described in Hebrews 8:13 end of the age": the end of the old covenant that was becoming obsolete and growing old is ready to vanish away. Before there can be a New Covenant their must be an end or last days to the Old Covenant.

The Bible also say the New Covenant is everlasting which has no end. Hebrews 13:12 Now may the God of peace who brought up our Lord Jesus from the dead, that great Shepherd of the sheep, (through the blood of the everlasting covenant),

That first-century generation was living at the time of "the end of the of the old covenant." which Peter confirm this when they write that "the end of all things is at hand" (1 Peter 4:7).

The year is 64 AD Paul’s missionary journeys are completed as he writes from his imprisonment in Rome. Colossians 1:23 To the saints in Closse.... the gospel which you hard, which was preached to every creature under heaven, of which I, Paul, became a minister. In Romans 10:17-18 the apostle said, in 64 A.D., So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God. But I say, have they not heard? Yes indeed: "Their sound has gone out to all the earth, And their words to the ends of the world." The gospel had been preached to ends of the world.

In Romans 16:25-26 the apostle said, Now to Him who is able to establish you according to my gospel and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery kept secret since the world began (but now made manifest), and by the prophetic Scriptures (made known to all nations), according to the commandment of the everlasting God, for obedience to the faith. The gospel was made know to all the nations. In Titus 2:11 Paul said. For the grace of God that brings (salvation has appeared to all men)

A similar language is used in Colossians 1:4-6 since we heard of your faith in Christ Jesus and of your love for all the saints; because of the hope which is laid up for you in heaven, of which you heard before in the word of the truth of the gospel, which has come to you, (as it has also in all the world), and is bringing forth fruit, as it is also among you since the day you heard and knew the grace of God in truth;

What happen a few short years after Paul said these words? The end came! The fall of Jerusalem in (70 AD), that was an event that shook the then civilized world as they know it. With the end of the law, the Priesthood, the system of sacrifices, their genealogies, and the Temple came the end of the word as they know it.

All this occurred in Jesus’ contemporaries..