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That Day and Hour Knoweth No Man 1
(Mat 24:34-37 KJV) "Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled. {35} Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away. {36} But of that day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but my Father only. {37} But as the days of Noe were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be."

Two-sided Coin

Throughout the last two millenniums since Christ ascension, Christians have been looking for His return with some believing it would be in their lifetime (James 5:8-9 2). With only two leading views considered, we could look at it as if it was a two-sided coin. One side of it inscribed the coming of Jesus will be imminent, at any moment; and the other side inscribed the things (with some yet to occur) that will precede the second coming of Jesus, with both sides inscribed "That day and hour knoweth no man."

Many are looking at one side of the coin but not the other. Could it be that both sides are being used of God to accomplish what He is doing no matter how wrong one side might be, being men's concoction? For those who have looked at that side, hear is your chance to look at the other. From what the Bible has been showing me, those who have interpreted His next coming to mean an any moment secret pre-tribulation rapture are being deceived (2 Th 2:1-3).

Jesus Did Not Know the Day and Hour

When Jesus was on earth, He Himself did not know what time (Mark 13:32) He would return. Just before His ascension, some first century disciples asked Him was it time to restore again the kingdom (Acts 1:6)? And, in Acts 1:7, He said unto them, "...It is not for you to know the times or the seasons, which the Father hath put in his own power."

All the Details

Now, since Jesus is at the right hand of God (Mark 16:19 3), surely communicating with the Father, He might know the time, and with all the details He has given in Revelation, it is more likely He does. While on earth He knew that He would suffer, die and rise from the grave the third day and knew much what would happen before His return.

Prelude of Things

Many natural minds are overlooking the facts given by our Lord Himself -- a prelude of things that will occur before that Day. In Matthew 24 where He said that no man will know the day and hour, 1 He told His disciples what to expect before then.

When they showed Jesus the temple, He told them what would happen to it. It happened just like He said. Not one stone was left upon another (24:1-2). All was thrown down possibly for retrieving all the gold from between the stones after the temple burned.

(Mat 24:1-2 KJV) "And Jesus went out, and departed from the temple: and his disciples came to him for to show him the buildings of the temple. {2} And Jesus said unto them, See ye not all these things? verily I say unto you, There shall not be left here one stone upon another, that shall not be thrown down."

Jesus' disciples asked Him privately when will these things be, what will be the sign of His coming and the end of the world (24:3)?

(Mat 24:3 KJV) "And as he sat upon the mount of Olives, the disciples came unto him privately, saying, Tell us, when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world?"

First, Jesus said unto them take to heed that no man deceive you. Many will come in His name saying I am the Christ and will deceive many (24:4-5).

(Mat 24:4-5 KJV) "And Jesus answered and said unto them, Take heed that no man deceive you. {5} For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many."

Will hear of wars and rumors of wars...and it will not be time for the end (24:6). Seems familiar to what is happening today.

(Mat 24:6 KJV) "And ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars: see that ye be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet."

Nation will rise against nation and kingdom against kingdom, and there will be famines, pestilence and earthquakes in various places. All these are the beginning of sorrows (24:7-8). Also seems familiar to what is happening today.

(Mat 24:7-8 KJV) "For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places. {8} All these are the beginning of sorrows."

Jesus said that His disciples (Gal 3:28-29) will be delivered up to be afflicted and killed, and will be hated of all nations for His name's sake (24:9). That has been happening all along except for the "of all nations" part.

(Mat 24:9 KJV) "Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall kill you: and ye shall be hated of all nations for my name's sake."

And then many will (apostatize) be offended (Mat 13:20-21), betray and hate one another. In 2 Thessalonians 2:3, Paul told the Thessalonians that a falling away will come and that man of sin be revealed before the Day of Christ. The words "falling away" were both translated from the Greek word apostasia (G646) which means "apostasy," and is basically what "offended" means 24:10.

(Mat 24:10 KJV) "And then shall many be offended, and shall betray one another, and shall hate one another."

Many false prophets will arise and will deceive many. Also in 2 Thessalonians 2:3, Paul, like Christ in 24:4 and in 24:11, warned about deception. I believe there will be those who will be deceived by the man of sin, the son of perdition (2 Th 2:3), many call the Antichrist (1 John 2:18), when Christ does not show before the Tribulation. Jesus also said, because iniquity will abound, the love of many will wax cold. But he that endures until the end the same will be saved (24:12-13).

(Mat 24:11-13 KJV) "And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many. {12} And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold. {13} But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved."

The Gospel of the kingdom will be preached unto all the world...then the end will come (24:14). With the today's technology that could easily be accomplished.

(Mat 24:14 KJV) "And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come."

When the abomination of desolation spoken by Daniel the prophet occurs, it will be time for the Great Tribulation. For those in Judaea, Jesus warned and told them of what they need to do.

(Mat 24:15-21 KJV) "When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoso readeth, let him understand:) {16} Then let them which be in Judaea flee into the mountains: {17} Let him which is on the housetop not come down to take any thing out of his house: {18} Neither let him which is in the field return back to take his clothes. {19} And woe unto them that are with child, and to them that give suck in those days! {20} But pray ye that your flight be not in the winter, neither on the sabbath day: {21} For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be."

Following the brief detail about the Great Tribulation, Jesus said, "And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved" (Mat 24:22). According to the things I see in book of Revelation, the Tribulation period will be so awful with terrorism, Christians dying for their faith, no peace, inflation, hunger, killing going on in a quarter of the earth, and all the various plagues smiting the heaven, earth and its inhabitants. And with those days being as days of Noah (24:37-39) and as the days of Lot (Luke 17:26-30), wickedness will be the rule of the day. Considering just nuclear and biological threats, the annihilation of the whole human race could be possible today. At the rate things are advancing, it could easily be said for the future, except those days would shortened no flesh would be saved, but for the elect sake those days will be shortened.

(Mat 24:22 KJV) "And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect's sake those days shall be shortened."

As you have noticed, some things are yet to occur before Jesus returns. Many in the past have tried to connect events during their lifetime to the last days. It might have appeared that Jesus was soon to return, but all the things Jesus talked about had not all occurred. Today more has been fulfilled which could make it sooner than ever. I do believe Jesus could soon return but not at any moment, because there is still more to be fulfilled before that Day.

If any man will say unto you, behold here is Christ or there believe it not. There will arise false Christs and prophets, and will show signs and wonders, and if it were possible, they will deceive the very Elect. Things they had been told before, like Paul in (2 Thessalonians 2:5, 9 and 10. If they say he is in the desert, go not out, or he is in the secret chambers, believe it not (24:23-26).

(Mat 24:23-26 KJV) "Then if any man shall say unto you, Lo, here is Christ, or there; believe it not. {24} For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall show great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect. {25} Behold, I have told you before. {26} Wherefore if they shall say unto you, Behold, he is in the desert; go not forth: behold, he is in the secret chambers; believe it not."
Note: I believe some pretribbers will accept the Antichrist (1 John 2:18), wolf in sheep's clothing, because of the miraculous things he does.

Jesus will come quickly as lightning shines across the sky, but that does not mean at any moment before all is fulfilled. If you read "One Shall Be Taken and the Other Left" study, you will find what Jesus means in verse 28.

(Mat 24:27-28 KJV) "For as the lightning cometh out of the east, and shineth even unto the west; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be. {28} For wheresoever the carcase is, there will the eagles be gathered together."

His return and gathering together His Elect will occur after the Tribulation. That Day will be more spectacular than Star Wars, Armageddon or any movie Hollywood could make that might simulate a worldwide or universal cataclysm.

(Mat 24:29-31 KJV) "Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun 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: {30} And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. {31} And he shall send his angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other."

With Israel again coming together as a nation, I believe it is near our Saviors return.

(Mat 24:32-33 KJV) "Now learn a parable of the fig tree; When his branch is yet tender, and putteth forth leaves, ye know that summer is nigh: {33} So likewise ye, when ye shall see all these things, know that it is near, even at the doors."

All these things must be fulfilled for this generation to pass. Heaven and earth will pass away, but His words will not (24:34-35).

(Mat 24:34-35 KJV) "Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled. {35} Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away."

No one knows that day and hour of His return, but only the Father (24:36).

(Mat 24:36 KJV) "But of that day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but my Father only."

As the days of Noah, so will also the coming of the Son of Man be. I believe worldly people will be living normal lives according to their own standards just before Jesus comes again and (took them all away) destroys them all (Luke 17:29-30). We might not know the day and hour, but we do know that some things are yet to occur before then and what the days will be like. The Lord wants us to know of His nearness (24:33) but not the precise time.

(Mat 24:37-39 KJV) "But as the days of Noe were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be. {38} For as in the days that were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noe entered into the ark, {39} And knew not until the flood came, and took them all away; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be."
(Luke 17:25-30 KJV) "But first must he suffer many things, and be rejected of this generation. {26} And as it was in the days of Noe, so shall it be also in the days of the Son of man. {27} They did eat, they drank, they married wives, they were given in marriage, until the day that Noe entered into the ark, and the flood came, and destroyed them all. {28} Likewise also as it was in the days of Lot; they did eat, they drank, they bought, they sold, they planted, they builded; {29} But the same day that Lot went out of Sodom it rained fire and brimstone from heaven, and destroyed them all. {30} Even thus shall it be in the day when the Son of man is revealed."

In that night, one will be taken and the other left. Luke includes a question by Jesus' disciples. Where, Lord? The answer is to a place many today are not aware of. Compare Matthew 24:40-41 with Luke 17:34-37. If you read "One Shall Be Taken and the Other Left" study, you will find a more detailed answer.

(Mat 24:40-41 KJV) "Then shall two be in the field; the one shall be taken, and the other left. {41} Two women shall be grinding at the mill; the one shall be taken, and the other left."
(Luke 17:34-37 KJV) "I tell you, in that night there shall be two men in one bed; the one shall be taken, and the other shall be left. {35} Two women shall be grinding together; the one shall be taken, and the other left. {36} Two men shall be in the field; the one shall be taken, and the other left. {37} And they answered and said unto him, Where, Lord? And he said unto them, Wheresoever the body is, thither will the eagles be gathered together."

Again, our Lord told His disciples that they will not know what hour He will return (24:42).

(Mat 24:42 KJV) "Watch therefore: for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come."

If the goodman of the house would have known in what watch the thief would come, he would have watched, and would not have permitted his house to be broken into (24:43). Part of the message I deduct from that is, if we know the sign of His return (24:3) and what needs to be fulfilled before then, we will be prepared and will have done everything possible to see that all in of our house (Acts 18:8) were saved (Acts 16:31-33) and not separated from us when Christ catches up His Saints.

(Mat 24:43-47 KJV) "But know this, that if the goodman of the house had known in what watch the thief would come, he would have watched, and would not have suffered his house to be broken up. {44} Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh. {45} Who then is a faithful and wise servant, whom his lord hath made ruler over his household, to give them meat in due season? {46} Blessed is that servant, whom his lord when he cometh shall find so doing. {47} Verily I say unto you, That he shall make him ruler over all his goods."

Therefore be ready, for in such an hour we think not our Lord will come. Blessed is the faithful and wise servant who was made ruler over his household, to give them meat in due season (24:43-47). We need to be feeding those in our life the right message from the Word of God when it is due. If we understand it (Mat 13:23) and know the sign of His coming (24:3), we will be.

For the evil servant, his lord will come in a day when he looks not for him, and in an hour that he is not aware of (24:48-51). For sure he will not know the day and hour. The lord of that servant will cut him asunder and appoint him his portion with the hypocrites. There will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.

(Mat 24:48-51 KJV) "But and if that evil servant shall say in his heart, My lord delayeth his coming; {49} And shall begin to smite his fellowservants, and to eat and drink with the drunken; {50} The lord of that servant shall come in a day when he looketh not for him, and in an hour that he is not aware of, {51} And shall cut him asunder, and appoint him his portion with the hypocrites: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth."

Jesus kept His disciples in suspense, and showed and warned them of things. As we see the day approaching, we need to be "...exhorting one another: and so much the more..." (Heb 10:25 KJV).

(Heb 10:25 KJV) "Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching."

When Jesus comes again, our change will be quick (1 Cor 15:52). We may not know the day and hour, but we can know about things that precede and follow His return. If one studies about them in Matthew 24 along with other prophecy details that are written throughout the the prophetic Word such as 2 Thessalonians 2:1-12, one can piece together more of God's schedule and chronology of end time events.

In Daniel things were sealed until the time of the end (Dan 12:9). In Revelation, Jesus, who is now at the right hand of God (Rom 8:34 3), has opened up the book (Rev 5:5) and unveiled much unto us. It must be near the end (Dan 12:4) and the last days, because so much is being revealed in an esoterically way to His Elect. The end-time details over-all is an enigma and to some a paradox.

If you're a Christian and choose to study prophecy, first, you need to pray and seek the guidance of the Holy Spirit, and then be prepared to ask the Father questions. Just when something does not make sense, hang in there and He will bring to you the understanding. Everything does not come all at once. As you grow, periodically He will give fresh and new revelations to study.

The studies following this one may help you to get more informed about that Day.

References:

1) Mat 24:32-37; 25:13; Mark 13:28-33; Zec 14:6-7
2) Mat 10:23; 16:28; Acts 1:6-7; James 5:8-9; 1 Pet 4:7
3) Mark 16:19; Acts 2:33; 7:55-56; Rom 8:34; Col 3:1; Heb 8:1-2; 10:12-13; 12:2; 1 Pet 3:22

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