Monday, May 11, 2009

MITN XXIV

1. Jesus then left the Temple area and was going on His way when His disciples came up to Him and began to discuss the buildings of the Temple, and how imposing and impressive they thought the architecture to be.

2. But He said to them, "You may be rightfully impressed with what you see before you...the Temple is, indeed, something to behold. But the truth is, there is not one stone in that magnificent building that is not going to end up in a pile of rubble."

3. Later, as He was sitting alone on The Mount of Olives overlooking Jerusalem, His disciples came to Him and said, "Tell us more about the destruction of the Temple that you mentioned before. When are these things going to happen? Will that be the sign of Your fully coming into power, and of the completion and consummation of this age and era?”

4. Jesus said to them, “Be careful that no one deceives or misleads you on these points…understand these beginning events, marking the period between My resurrection and the Temple’s destruction…

5. For during this time many will come in falsehood, claiming, ‘I, alone, am the Christ’, and they will lead many away from the truth of Who and what the Christ is, in reality.

6. Also, during this time you will hear of wars and rumors of wars…see that you are not frightened or troubled, for this must take place…wars will come and go as they always have…but the end of the age is not yet.

7. And nation will fight nation…ruler will fight ruler…famines and earthquakes will occur in various places, as they always have.

8. These events are a part of the natural order of things...but, in another sense, they are also the birth pangs of the destruction that is coming on this nation.

9. And they will hand you over to suffer affliction and tribulation, and even put you to death…you should know this now, a period of time is coming when you will seemingly be hated by all nations because you carry My name.

10. In fact, the conflict will become so intense that many will be offended and repelled, and will stumble and fall away from My truth, even betraying one another and pursuing one another with hatred because of My testimony.

11. And in all the confusion, false prophets will rise up in opportunism, and deceive a lot of gullible people.

12. And, worse yet, the love of the majority of people will grow cold because of the multiplied chaos and iniquity.

13. But whoever endures until the end of this period of time will find that their salvation is real, durable, and fully intact.

14. And this good news of the Kingdom will be preached throughout the entire, known world as a testimony to all the nations (Colossians 1:5, 6, 23; Romans 1:8, 10:18), and then will come the end of the age…the end of the Temple, and its sacrificial system…the consummation of the Law…the end of the covenant nation of Israel…in a word, the end of the world as you now know it.

15. So when you see the sacrilege and the appalling abomination spoken of by the prophet Daniel…the desecration set up in the Temple sanctuary, when armies come to destroy both Jerusalem and the Temple…let the one who has read the prophecy take notice and realize that this is its fulfillment.

16. And if you're living in Judea at the time, you’ll need to run for the hills.

17. If, at that time, you’re up on the roof of your house, or working in your yard, don't even go into the house to get anything

18. If you're out in the field, don't go back to get your coat.

19. Unfortunately, pregnant and nursing mothers will have it especially hard during this time of persecution.

20. Even though this is inevitable, you should pray that it won't happen during the winter or on a Sabbath.

21. Seriously…what’s about to happen to this Temple…this city…this nation... will be on a scale beyond what the known world has ever seen, or will see again.

22. In fact, if this Great Tribulation…these dark days of destruction…were left to run their course, nobody would survive. But on account of the ones that God has chosen, the trouble will actually be cut short.

23. But, if during this period anyone says to you, ‘Look…this person right here is the Christ!’ or ‘That man over there is the Christ!’…do not believe it for a second.

24. For after my resurrection and ascension, the Christ will no longer be manifested and revealed as an individual person…so when these singular false Christs and false prophets arise, be aware of what’s really happening. And don’t be deceived by their tricks, for some of them will show great signs and wonders so as to lead many astray, and to cause many to view them as an individual Christ. In fact, if it were possible, they would attempt to deceive even the ones that God has chosen as the first-fruits of salvation.

25. Now, see and remember…I have warned you of all of this beforehand.

26. So, if they say to you, ‘Look…He’s out there in the wilderness’, don’t even bother to go out there and look. And if they tell you, ‘He’s in some secret place’, do not believe it."
27. This revelation...the true appearing of the Son of Man...isn't something you can go somewhere to see. On the contrary, it comes to you as fast as lightning!

28. But, in the same way that a gathering of vultures indicates that there is a carcass nearby, so these signs will reveal that the end of an era is near.

29. Then, speaking to them in poetic, prophetic vocabulary, or in a symbolic language of prophecy that his audience understood from their familiarity with the Law and the Prophets (Genesis 1:14 - 16; Isaiah 13:9, 10; 34:4; Amos 8:9; Ezekiel 32:7, 8), He said, "Immediately after this Great Tribulation, the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not shed its light, and the stars will fall from the sky, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken." (In this way He used the same imagery that the Prophets of old had employed to speak of the downfall of earthly authorities and governors).

30. And He went on to say, "Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in heaven, or in the heavenly realm...the sign indicating that this destruction of Jerusalem and the Temple means He is now enthroned in heaven, ruling over the whole earth...this cataclysmic series of events will show that the Kingdom has been taken away from a visible nation, and given to an invisible one...that the destruction of the natural Temple has made way for a Temple of the Spirit to be built in the heavenlies." And, once again using the imagery of the Prophets of old (Psalms 104:3; Isaiah 19:1; Nahum 1:3), He said, "And all the tribes of the earth will repent with great emotion when they see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven (an almost commonplace Scriptural symbol for His presence, judgment and salvation) with power and great glory!

31. And He will send out His messengers...ministers of the gospel who will sound out His good news like a loud trumpet call...and they will gather His chosen ones...the ones He has chosen in Him from the foundation of the world...they will call them in from the four winds...from every part of the earth...into His New Temple in His New Nation...His New Synagogue of the Spirit...from one end of the universe to the other.

32. From the fig tree learn this lesson...as soon as its young shoots become soft and tender, and it starts to put out leaves, you know for a fact that summer is near.

33. And so it is with you...when you see all these things coming to pass, you'll know the full revelation of Him is at the door.

34. I'm telling you the truth, so do not take this lightly, or assume that this is some far-off, futuristic prophecy that has no relevance to you. I'm not saying all this for some generation that will live hundreds of years from today. This is for all of you who are alive right now! And this era continues until all these things take place.

35. Count on the validity of these words...the sky and the earth will fade away before any of my words do, because my words are eternally and absolutely true.
36. I've told you these things to prepare you for the imminent judgment coming on this nation...but concerning the full revelation of the Son of Man, and when, exactly, it will occur...no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father.

37. But I can tell you what I do know about it...this great, global revelation of the Son will take place in times like Noah's.

38. It will be just as it was in those days before the flood...there were no signs...nothing out of the ordinary happening...everyone was carrying on as usual, eating and drinking, marrying and being given in marriage, until the day when Noah went into the ark.

39. The population, at large, knew nothing of God's intention until the flood hit and swept everything that was unrighteous away...only the righteous were left behind. The revelation of the Son of Man will be like that, only this time it will be a flood of grace.

40. As the darnel will be separated from the wheat in you...as the catch in the dragnet will be divided in you...so 'two men', as it were, will be working in the field...one will be taken, one left behind. The full revelation of the Son of Man will take away from you the man that needs to be purged, and will leave behind the real you...the righteous you...the man that He has chosen.

41. In the same way, 'two women' will be grinding at the mill...one will be taken in the Son of Man's flood...the part of that woman that is subject to His judgment...but one...the real one...will be mercifully left behind, safe in the ark of His redemption.

42. Even so...regardless of the promise that the real you will ultimately be left behind...you should stay awake and alert. You have no idea when this revelation will come, so, until it does, you should make every effort to live righteously.

43. In fact, you should be as vigilant as a homeowner looking out at all times for a burglar.

44. You have no idea when the Son of Man is going to be revealed, so you should live in a prepared state of expectation at all times, simply because you want to please Him.

45. Who is a faithful, thoughtful, and wise servant, whom his master has put in charge of his household to give to the others the food and supplies at the proper time?

46. Blessed, indeed, is that servant whom, when his master comes, he will find so doing.

47. Without a doubt, he will set him over all his possessions.

48. But if that servant acts wickedly and says to himself, 'My master is delayed, and is going to be gone a long time...and besides, he's always going to take care of me, regardless of what I do',

49. And begins to beat his fellow servants, and to eat up all the food that should be going to the hungry, and stays drunk all the time,

50. The master of that servant will come on a day when he does not expect him, and at an hour in which he has let down his guard, and is clueless,

51. And will judge him harshly, cutting him off from what he should have been paid as a steward, and will put him out of the house, along with the other pretenders...outside in the cold, where his teeth will chatter as he weeps over what he has lost."

13 comments:

peacemaker said...

As much as I have enjoyed chapters 1-23, chap. 24 is the one I've been waiting for. Reading this particular chapter in other translations and paraphrases, it's easy to continue the old mindset that Jesus is foretelling "end-time" events. This paraphrase, however, clarifies that misconception. It makes it very easy to understand Jesus, as prophet, is in reality foretelling events that happen only 30+ years down the road.

I love the first sentence in v.24 also. Jesus tells the disciples that the Christ is not something to be found in one person only, but, after his death, will be realized in all humanity. That is more true now than ever.

This is a beautiful thing.

One day, when these timely paraphrases are world-renowned and completely revolutionize the way people understand the bible, I can brag and tell folks: "I know the one who did this".

May you continue to find strength, peace, time, and joy as you follow the path of this most important endeavor.

Peace,
PM

Bishop Jim Swilley said...

Thanks so much, PM...your words, as always, are so encouraging...I'm working on the second half right now...

I also wanted to point out something from the last chapter that I had never noticed before doing this paraphrase:

23:39. So, what is there left to say? I only have a few more hours in this dimension, walking in the incarnation in which you now see Me. On one level, I weep for you…you have no idea of the destruction that’s about to come on you as a nation…and yet, you will see Me again in the revelation of the Spirit…I mean, really ‘see’ Me…and when you do, you'll say, ‘Blessed…adored…exalted is He Who comes in the name of the Lord! Let us worship the One Who has brought God’s rule to the earth!”_____________________





It's amazing that after this intense rebuke, He says to the Scribes and Pharisees that eventually even they will "see" Him...it's a powerful reconciliation Scripture that doesn't get a lot of attention...


How great is our God, sing with me...

How great is our God, and ALL will see...

Avatar said...

v. 9 “seemingly”...ah well then...an MITN pearl hidden in a field, waiting to be found by a seeker. Very cool.

v.13 enduring in order to be "real, durable, and fully intact”...the whole POINT, clearly made!!...I’m looking forward to somebody wondering “what is a ‘durable’ salvation?”

Ditto what PM said...this is a beautiful thing.

Northern Light said...

Tonight, I felt the need to "see" and "hear", so I looked at the archived sermons on the CITN web page. OH MAN>........first I watched P. Debye on "Lessons from the Book of Jonah"....HEARD HEARD GOOD WORD ! HE wanted me to hear.
P. Debye, you rock !

So, then, I chose (No, "I" did not do the choosing, again, let's get real, we know WHO chose for me) Bishop's year ago sermon on "I've Seen Fire and I've Seen Rain". WOW.....kicked my butt. (can I say that?) It shouldn't surprise me, but more than that I guess it just amazes me that I am riveted in my seat many times at the Word I hear preached from your heart and out of your mouth. HE uses you so efficiently and blessedly.

Both of you spoke to me tonight through these messages, to a situation, and while I can not tell you when, because I do not know when either, I can definitely tell you that I believe I will share the result with you both someday. You both don't even know that you touched on it when I was ITB two weeks ago, also. God so brought me there for HIS plan. Something in HIS Purpose. Somethin'. I am so open and willing, we will just have to see.

You referred to this at the end of the service, Bishop. That was so just to "me", even though originally it was preached a year ago, when I had not even heard of CITN.......

In HIS time..Wait on the Lord......."not yet".

Oh, when I can tell you what those words mean and from when! WOW

Peace,
Northern Light
and the song playing.....I BELIEVE by Sound of Blackness ! perfect

Izumi/JOY said...

v. 2 reminds me of Psalm 127:1.

v. 10 - the words..."and fall away from My truth..." made me consider what His truth is: love. Reading everything afterwards, I inserted that word.

v. 12's, ..." because of the multiplied chaos and iniquity," reminds me of the last chapter. In verses 13, 15, 16, 23, 25, 27, 29, sorrow is mentioned 7 times. (fulfills Isaiah 55:11)

He wraps Himself in light
And darkness tries to hide
It trembles at His voice
Trembles at His voice

He is the great AND. The Godhead, three in One. Father, Spirit, Son. Lion AND the Lamb.

Anonymous said...

PM, your coexist/peace icon is my favorite one that you use and is right in step with what is seen here. This reading for the most part really fits together with what Jesus said to his disciples in verse ten of chapter XXIII concerning His revelation of the Christ. Yes this is very plainly written to dispel the popular notion that it was somehow intended for people of a later time and many people who are led astray have thought it to be about their own generation. That false notion is even prevailent in our own time. This work brings much peace to the troubled soul that listens with their heart to what is said. I also like what Bishop has said about seeing something new in this about reconciliation himself. It is so like the Christ that is alive in humanity to reveal to the revelator precious prophecies that can be connected with Holy Spirit's work of truth among us. Really loving the Love in this.

Bishop Jim Swilley said...

Wow..I really thought Ch. 24 would evoke more discussion...oh well, maybe it's a good thing...

Crownjewel said...

vs 39...only this time it will be a flood of GRACE!" Meditating and chewing on that one especially!

...‘Blessed…adored…exalted is He Who comes in the name of the Lord! Let us worship the One Who has brought God’s rule to the earth.' I can only add my AMEN to it all!!!

~Love, Worship, Praise!!!

Donald said...

That's good Bishop, really good.

Larry Usher said...

Just a thought tonight...

Man looks at physical miracles and angelic appearances, et al as "spectacular". God looks at the simplest loving act of obedience as His idea of a spectacle.

I know we all like "miracles", but they certainly are in the eye of the beholder! A word fitly spoken, laced with love can move mountains in the soul of a man, of a people, of a nation.

Hi to all-love to all

Bro Lar

Northern Light said...

word ver : imorich

I'm more rich

That's how it is with GOD!

Peace,
NL

Northern Light said...

Word Ver : blest

Couldn't let that one pass, now could I ?

Blest..........Blessed

Peace,
NL

Erik said...

Hi All, and especially Bishop, I am behind on the party.

The overall statement on the chapter, the filtering of the individual, Amen a million times. !!!!!!

This is The Spirit of the explanation.

V 46 (although I resist the idea of verses, but understand it, and ultimately takes nothing away from The Spirit) All of us who carry out the edification of each other do well in so doing NOW, as The Master is present. We cover the population, and each can rely on us who do so to cover them. – This is the greatest gig in The Universe, for those of us who accept it.

The greatest Joy is covering others as ourselves, as we relate with God who is in All of Us.

Recently I was with some friends who have done well, and had a 1600 bottle wine cellar. Beautiful premium wines, for which I provided my skill with food in exchange. A small goal that was accomplished was to put a dent over 4 days in their cellar, while enjoying excellent meals to accompany the wine.

How does that tie into MITN XXIV? The gifts we each had made room together, and filtered the individual tares and chaff, as each Wo/Man was separated as continual unrighteous pieces were swept away. Ahhh, the enjoyment of the best wine kept for later. Blessed event and Blessed people.

The pieces that did not fit were harshly judged, mercifully cut off, as each of us emerged more real, more refined.

This is the process, refined, edified, by each other, as The Body develops. Like an adolescent becoming an adult. We All are the expression of The Christ, The Creator expressed in Creation, No One is wholly left behind, just filtered.

I enjoy to the max my gig, edifying, building bridges, Loving self, others as myself and God with All my heart and soul. --- How much better can it get ???

Wed. service, understanding that every communication or exchange is first in The Spirit. Peace and understanding of the other comes first, to edify others and seethe best expression of what I and they may communicate. That costs me nothing and provides the greatest value. If indeed a situation does not follow that, I/We are still wise as a serpent and gentle as a dove.