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This gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in the whole world...

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#1
And then the end will come.

"This gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all the nations, and then the end will come. Matthew 24:14 (NASB)

Some say the "end" hasn't come because this gospel hasn't been preached in the whole world. Paul writes otherwise:

First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for you all, because your faith is being proclaimed throughout the whole world. Romans 1:8 (NASB)

but now is manifested, and by the Scriptures of the prophets, according to the commandment of the eternal God, has been made known to all the nations, leading to obedience of faith; Romans 16:26 (NASB)

the gospel which has come to you, just as in all the world Colossians 1:5-6 (NASB)

the gospel that you have heard, which was proclaimed in all creation under heaven Colossians 1:23 (NASB)


I wonder how Paul, called by Christ Himself, could've been so wrong. :chin
 
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#2
Or, maybe he wasn't wrong and we just have to understand how he viewed the "whole world" (think of a map of the globe with no North, Central, South America, no Russia, no China, missing most of Africa and all of Antarctica, and none of the Pacific, Atlantic, or Indian Ocean Islands.)

Think he could be right if we consider how he saw the "whole world?"

Yeah, I bet that's it.
 
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#3
I suppose some people don't feel the security to explore where scripture leads lest their whole world be shattered.:shrug
 
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#4
I suppose some people don't feel the security to explore where scripture leads lest their whole world be shattered.:shrug
I remember growing up in church never once hearing or reading Paul's writings portrayed as a fulfillment of Christ's words in the Olivet Discourse. They were never discussed in direct reference to the prophecies of Matthew 24, Mark 13, and Luke 21. And we all know (if we grew up in Evangelical circles) how those prophecies always - somehow - pertained to us, even though upon taking His words in context, that would be impossible.

But there is nothing more clear in the entire Bible than these words:

"This gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all the nations, and then the end will come. Matthew 24:14 (NASB)

Prophecy.

So faith comes from hearing, and hearing by the word of Christ. But I say, surely they have never heard, have they? Indeed they have; "THEIR VOICE HAS GONE OUT INTO ALL THE EARTH, AND THEIR WORDS TO THE ENDS OF THE WORLD." Romans 10:17-18 (NASB)

Fulfillment.

And we know that if the gospel had been preached to the whole world, the end of the age couldn't have been far behind.

It wasn't.

"Truly I say to you, this generation will not pass away until all these things take place. Matthew 24:34 (NASB)

All those things happened (see every preceding verse for the list of them) happened before Jesus' generation had passed, culminating in the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 AD: the end of the Mosaic Age and the Old Covenant forever.

People enslaved to certain doctrines cannot accept the truth of these words, and yet they are as solid and sure as Christ Himself: the Rock upon whom our faith is founded.

But if His words are not true, if the futurist/dispensationalist doctrines of men are correct, then there is no reason to follow Him, and those who claim to do so without affirming His words are worse than those who are lost. The lost have an excuse for not believing Him. Those who claim to believe don't.
 
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#5
Just thought I'd drop one more little bombshell here.

Some will argue that Christ's view of the future was broader than Paul's. Interesting then, that Christ would be recorded as having used this word when discussing the "whole world":

Greek Word: οἰκουμένη

Transliterated Word: oikoumenê
Root: the fem. pres. pass. part. of 3611;

Definition: the inhabited earth:--

List of English Words and Number of Times Used
inhabited earth (1),
world (14).

And here is what that word - from where we get the word "ecumenical" - meant to them:

[FONT=Verdana, Arial, Geneva] the inhabited earth
  1. the portion of the earth inhabited by the Greeks, in distinction from the lands of the barbarians
  2. the Roman empire, all the subjects of the empire
  3. the whole inhabited earth, the world
  4. the inhabitants of the earth, men
It's the same word Paul used in Romans 10:18, Luke used in 4:5 of his gospel, and also in Acts 17:31. They were all describing the same inhabited world in which they lived, not us.

Eusebius describes the effect of the spread of the gospel this way:
[/FONT]
It is evident, that but a short time after the appearance of our Saviour Jesus Christ had been made known to all men, a new nation suddenly came into existence; a nation confessedly neither small nor weak, nor situated in a remote corner of the earth, but the most populous and the most religious of all, and so much the more indestructible and invincible, as it has always had the power of God as its support.

This nation, appearing at the time appointed by inscrutable wisdom, is that which among all, is honoured with the name of Christ.

Tiberius, therefore, under whom the name of Christ was spread throughout the world, when this doctrine was announced to him from Palestine, where it first began, communicated with the senate, being obviously pleased with the doctrine; but the senate, as they had not proposed the measure, rejected it. But he continued in his opinion, threatening death to the accusers of the Christians; a divine providence infusing this into his mind, that the gospel having freer scope in its commencement, might spread every where over the world."

Thus, then, under a celestial influence and co-operation, the doctrine of the Saviour, like the rays of the sun, quickly irradiated the whole world.

Presently, in accordance with divine prophecy, the sound of his inspired evangelists and apostles had gone throughout all the earth, and their words to the ends of the world. Throughout every city and village, like a replenished barn floor, churches were rapidly found abounding, and filled with members from every people. Those who, in consequence of the delusions that had descended to them from their ancestors, had been fettered by the ancient disease of idolatrous superstition, were now liberated, by the power of Christ, through the teaching and miracles of his messengers.

Eusebius Pamphilus, The Ecclesiastical History of Eusebius Pamphilus
 

for_his_glory

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#7
And then the end will come.

"This gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all the nations, and then the end will come. Matthew 24:14 (NASB)

Some say the "end" hasn't come because this gospel hasn't been preached in the whole world. Paul writes otherwise:

First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for you all, because your faith is being proclaimed throughout the whole world. Romans 1:8 (NASB)

but now is manifested, and by the Scriptures of the prophets, according to the commandment of the eternal God, has been made known to all the nations, leading to obedience of faith; Romans 16:26 (NASB)

the gospel which has come to you, just as in all the world Colossians 1:5-6 (NASB)

the gospel that you have heard, which was proclaimed in all creation under heaven Colossians 1:23 (NASB)


I wonder how Paul, called by Christ Himself, could've been so wrong. :chin
Paul was not wrong, it's our interpretation of what Paul said is wrong. The word of God has been brought to every nation as in literal names of countries, but not every person in these countries. Colossians 1:23 creation could possibly be another word for nation.

In Matthew 24 from verse 1-26 we today are seeing those things described in these verses as even in the days of Paul have seen these very same things as they are the beginning of sorrows. Now when you jump down to verse 29 we see that immediately after the troubles of those days that the sun will be darkened and the moon shall not give her light and the stars shall fall from heaven and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken. Notice it says heavens as being plural as in the three heavens.

Now we have not yet seen that of verse 29 happen as we have seen the other things mentioned for the gospel is still being preached to remote areas that have no connection to the media of the world and even now these villages are being revealed more and more. Only God knows when Christ will return, but He does give us signs to follow that will lead up to His return as Jesus will return in the air the same way He was taken up in the air.
 
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#8
And then the end will come.

"This gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all the nations, and then the end will come. Matthew 24:14 (NASB)

Some say the "end" hasn't come because this gospel hasn't been preached in the whole world. Paul writes otherwise:

First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for you all, because your faith is being proclaimed throughout the whole world. Romans 1:8 (NASB)

but now is manifested, and by the Scriptures of the prophets, according to the commandment of the eternal God, has been made known to all the nations, leading to obedience of faith; Romans 16:26 (NASB)

the gospel which has come to you, just as in all the world Colossians 1:5-6 (NASB)

the gospel that you have heard, which was proclaimed in all creation under heaven Colossians 1:23 (NASB)

I wonder how Paul, called by Christ Himself, could've been so wrong. :chin

Has the resurrection taken place?
 
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#9
Has the resurrection taken place?
Yep.

And behold, the veil of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom; and the earth shook and the rocks were split. The tombs were opened, and many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep were raised; and coming out of the tombs after His resurrection they entered the holy city and appeared to many. Matthew 27:51-53 (NASB)

The living were raised "to newness of life" through the gospel. Are you suggesting to be saved isn't to be raised from the dead???
 
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#10
Paul was not wrong, it's our interpretation of what Paul said is wrong. The word of God has been brought to every nation as in literal names of countries, but not every person in these countries. Colossians 1:23 creation could possibly be another word for nation.

In Matthew 24 from verse 1-26 we today are seeing those things described in these verses as even in the days of Paul have seen these very same things as they are the beginning of sorrows. Now when you jump down to verse 29 we see that immediately after the troubles of those days that the sun will be darkened and the moon shall not give her light and the stars shall fall from heaven and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken. Notice it says heavens as being plural as in the three heavens.

Now we have not yet seen that of verse 29 happen as we have seen the other things mentioned for the gospel is still being preached to remote areas that have no connection to the media of the world and even now these villages are being revealed more and more. Only God knows when Christ will return, but He does give us signs to follow that will lead up to His return as Jesus will return in the air the same way He was taken up in the air.
How is it that you can argue "all creation" isn't literal then turn around and say we've yet to see the stars fall from the sky???

Do you understand the Biblical use of metaphor and hyperbole set forth in the Old Testament?
 
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#11
I'm not sure I understand the point of all this.
The point is to show people that if Christ told the disciples "the end" would come after the gospel had been preached in all the world, and Paul writes that Christ's words have been fulfilled, how is it that Christians are still looking for "the end?"

I am trying to get people to see that what they understand to be "the end" is not what the apostles meant by "the end", especially as a first century Jew would've understood it.

Until people start to read these things through the eyes of ancient, devout, observant Jews, Christian "end-time" beliefs will continue to produce false prophets like Harold Camping, Jack van Impe, Hal Lindsey, Tim Lahaye, and Joel Richardson: men who use the ignorance of the "sheeple" to enrich themselves while leading people astray.

21st century evangelical eschatology is an embarassment, and I suggest to anyone willing to listen that it actually hinders the gospel of Christ.

That's the point. Sorry I didn't make it clear before this.
 
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#12
The point is to show people that if Christ told the disciples "the end" would come after the gospel had been preached in all the world, and Paul writes that Christ's words have been fulfilled, how is it that Christians are still looking for "the end?"

I am trying to get people to see that what they understand to be "the end" is not what the apostles meant by "the end", especially as a first century Jew would've understood it.

Until people start to read these things through the eyes of ancient, devout, observant Jews, Christian "end-time" beliefs will continue to produce false prophets like Harold Camping, Jack van Impe, Hal Lindsey, Tim Lahaye, and Joel Richardson: men who use the ignorance of the "sheeple" to enrich themselves while leading people astray.

21st century evangelical eschatology is an embarassment, and I suggest to anyone willing to listen that it actually hinders the gospel of Christ.

That's the point. Sorry I didn't make it clear before this.
That's what I thought you might be saying, I just wanted to make sure.

Everything is still in a state of decay but in the end everything is to be redeemed. So clearly the end has not yet come as there has been no great judgment, no changing of believers' bodies, no eternal life (people still die), no final resurrection, no final return of Jesus, no final restoration of all things, etc.
 
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#13
Everything is still in a state of decay but in the end everything is to be redeemed. So clearly the end has not yet come as there has been no great judgment, no changing of believers' bodies, no eternal life (people still die), no final resurrection, no final return of Jesus, no final restoration of all things, etc.
OK. So then can I put you down in the column of those whose literal view of certain passages in the Bible would've made no sense whatsoever to a first century Jewish audience, too? :shame
 
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#14
OK. So then can I put you down in the column of those whose literal view of certain passages in the Bible would've made no sense whatsoever to a first century Jewish audience, too? :shame
If you wish but you would be wrong. Clearly much of what is supposed to happen in the end simply has not happened. I have no idea how one could argue otherwise.
 
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#15
Or, maybe he wasn't wrong and we just have to understand how he viewed the "whole world" (think of a map of the globe with no North, Central, South America, no Russia, no China, missing most of Africa and all of Antarctica, and none of the Pacific, Atlantic, or Indian Ocean Islands.)

Think he could be right if we consider how he saw the "whole world?"

Yeah, I bet that's it.
Why did you miss India? Is India not in this world? St. Thomas was preaching in India in 52 AD. What is wrong in Paul saying the gospel is being preached to the whole world.

According to this article, Christianity entered China as early as 86 AD.

Mark began his ministry in Africa as early as 43 AD.

And gospel was being spread continually for 2 millenniums and still many millions does not know the gospel.
 
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#16
Yep.

And behold, the veil of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom; and the earth shook and the rocks were split. The tombs were opened, and many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep were raised; and coming out of the tombs after His resurrection they entered the holy city and appeared to many. Matthew 27:51-53 (NASB)

The living were raised "to newness of life" through the gospel. Are you suggesting to be saved isn't to be raised from the dead???
OK, where are Abraham, Issac, Jacob, David, Moses, Arron, Boaz, and the rest?
 

for_his_glory

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#17
How is it that you can argue "all creation" isn't literal then turn around and say we've yet to see the stars fall from the sky???

Do you understand the Biblical use of metaphor and hyperbole set forth in the Old Testament?
I never said all creation is literal or not literal, I said creation in this verse could possibly be another word for nation. I know all of Gods creation is literal as all things were created by His hands.
 

JLB

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#18
First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for you all, because your faith is being proclaimed throughout the whole world. Romans 1:8 (NASB)
Key phrase here – is being proclaimed. Which of course doesn’t mean “has been proclaimed†to the finish or to the end.


but now is manifested, and by the Scriptures of the prophets, according to the commandment of the eternal God, has been made known to all the nations, leading to obedience of faith; Romans 16:26 (NASB)
Nations = Strong's Number: 1484 – Ethnos This word is where we get our word ethnic.
The mystery had been kept secret by the “Jewish†prophets but now by the commandment of God this mystery is now available to all ethnic groups. Because it is now available does not mean that the Gospel has reached every ethnic group all over the whole world. Obviously not, since the end has not come.


the gospel which has come to you, just as in all the world Colossians 1:5-6 (NASB)
Colossians 1:5-6 NRSV
[FONT=&quot]5[/FONT][FONT=&quot] because of the hope laid up for you in heaven. You have heard of this hope before in the word of the truth, the gospel [/FONT][FONT=&quot]6[/FONT][FONT=&quot] that has come to you. Just as it is bearing fruit and growing in the whole world, so it has been bearing fruit among yourselves from the day you heard it and truly comprehended the grace of God. [/FONT][FONT=&quot]

Because the gospel message is growing and bearing fruit wherever it is preached, does not mean that it has in fact reached the whole entire world as well as every ethnic group. This passage clearly states that the gospel message is in the process of reaching the world but clearly has not “reached†the whole world which we know still today has not reached all the world and all the ethnic groups.

[/FONT]
the gospel that you have heard, which was proclaimed in all creation under heaven Colossians 1:23 (NASB)

Paul wrote a few lines before in verse 6 that the Gospel message was growing and bearing fruit wherever it is preached, so now is he contradicting what he just wrote or is the message here as the World English bible translates it –


23 if it is so that you continue in the faith, grounded and steadfast, and not moved away from the hope of the gospel which you heard, which is being proclaimed in all creation under heaven; of which I, Paul, was made a servant. “, which is being proclaimed†is much more consistent with what Paul is saying in verse 6 as well as his letter to the Romans.

Bottom Line Jesus said -13 But he who endures to the end shall be saved. 14 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 24:13-14

A key word in this phrase is witness. Strong's Number: 3142 – Marturion - This word is where we get the word martyr. The meaning here is clear, the message of the Gospel will be preached in all the world and to all ethnic groups, by giving their lives as martyrs as a testimony. This is consistent with another clear reference to the end of the age in Revelation 12:11 And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, and they did not love their lives to the death.

Preaching the Gospel of the kingdom and dying as martyrs!

The end is the end of the age, just as His disciples ask Him privately.



JLB
 
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#19
"Truly I say to you, this generation will not pass away until all these things take place. Matthew 24:34 (NASB)

All those things happened (see every preceding verse for the list of them) happened before Jesus' generation had passed, culminating in the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 AD: the end of the Mosaic Age and the Old Covenant forever.

People enslaved to certain doctrines cannot accept the truth of these words,...
I agree. I find the psychology of this to be fascinating. Suppose the Matthew 24 dialog were captured on video. We would have Jesus, talking to real people, pointing to a real temple and declaring its demise, making some other predictions about the future and then saying this:

Now learn the parable from the fig tree: when its branch has already become tender and puts forth its leaves, you know that summer is near; 33 so, you too, when you see all these things, recognize that He is near, right at the door. 34 Truly I say to you, this generation will not pass away until all these things take place.

It would be clear if we actually watched this on tape - the reality of the temple and the reality that He was not talking to us, but to His contemporaries would force us to conclude the obvious: Jesus believes the destruction of the temple, and all these other events, are going to happen within a generation (20? 30? 40? years, but not 2000 + years).

But because we do not have the "video", people seem to let their imaginations run wild. They apparently forget that Jesus and his contemporaries were looking at the actual temple that was destroyed in 70 AD. And so these people can allow themselves to imagine that Jesus is talking about some other temple, to be built in the distant future. Who does that, by the way? - points to a temple, says it will be destroyed and is really talking about some other temple? That makes no sense at all.

And because we do not have the video we can, if we like, pretend that Jesus was not talking to real people as he declared the fate of the temple. That way, by screening out the audience that was there listening to Jesus, we can imagine that Jesus is talking about a different generation than the one His listeners were members of.

Does this not strike you as decidedly odd - to rework the entire account to force it into a mold whereby Jesus is not saying what He is, indeed, obviously saying.

And what is He obviously saying? He is talking to real flesh and blood people, pointing to a real temple right in front of them and saying "Within a generation, this temple will be destroyed".

Now, please, explain to me why we should not take Him literally here.
 

JLB

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#20
I agree. I find the psychology of this to be fascinating. Suppose the Matthew 24 dialog were captured on video. We would have Jesus, talking to real people, pointing to a real temple and declaring its demise, making some other predictions about the future and then saying this:

Now learn the parable from the fig tree: when its branch has already become tender and puts forth its leaves, you know that summer is near; 33 so, you too, when you see all these things, recognize that He is near, right at the door. 34 Truly I say to you, this generation will not pass away until all these things take place.

It would be clear if we actually watched this on tape - the reality of the temple and the reality that He was not talking to us, but to His contemporaries would force us to conclude the obvious: Jesus believes the destruction of the temple, and all these other events, are going to happen within a generation (20? 30? 40? years, but not 2000 + years).

But because we do not have the "video", people seem to let their imaginations run wild. They apparently forget that Jesus and his contemporaries were looking at the actual temple that was destroyed in 70 AD. And so these people can allow themselves to imagine that Jesus is talking about some other temple, to be built in the distant future. Who does that, by the way? - points to a temple, says it will be destroyed and is really talking about some other temple? That makes no sense at all.

And because we do not have the video we can, if we like, pretend that Jesus was not talking to real people as he declared the fate of the temple. That way, by screening out the audience that was there listening to Jesus, we can imagine that Jesus is talking about a different generation than the one His listeners were members of.

Does this not strike you as decidedly odd - to rework the entire account to force it into a mold whereby Jesus is not saying what He is, indeed, obviously saying.

And what is He obviously saying? He is talking to real flesh and blood people, pointing to a real temple right in front of them and saying "Within a generation, this temple will be destroyed".

Now, please, explain to me why we should not take Him literally here.

We should take Him literally here!

I am glad you understand that everything Jesus taught in Matthew 24 in response to the questions from His disciples is literal, unless He says, Now hear the parable.

Let's look at the two questions in Matthew 24:3.

2 And Jesus said to them, "Do you not see all these things? Assuredly, I say to you, not one stone shall be left here upon another, that shall not be thrown down."

3 Now as He sat on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to Him privately, saying, "Tell us, when will these things be? And what will be the sign of Your coming, and of the end of the age?"

Matthew records two distinct and different questions.

To disregard the language used and try and blur these two questions into ONE question is to set the course for self deception in the rest of Jesus' discourse.

Once you understand that the disciples are askingtwo questions and Jesus is answering two questions, then and only then will the rest of the chapter begin to make sense.

The events that Jesus described are literal through verse 31.

Verse 32 Jesus clearly announces what He is about to say is a parable.

In verse 28, Jesus uses a literal natural example to describe a literal spiritual phenomenon!


JLB