THE WORDS OF JESUS
Creative, Causative, Prophetic, Instructional – Part 55
“The Parable of the Fig Tree – He is Near”
“From the fig tree learn its lesson: as soon as its branch becomes tender and puts out its leaves, you know that summer is near. So also, when you see all these things, you know that he is near, at the very gates. Truly, I say to you, this generation will not pass away until all these things take place. Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away.”
The Words of Jesus, Matthew 24:32-35.
These verses, by way of metaphor, give us important instructions about the timing of Jesus return and the end of the age and God’s Eternal nature.
However, you must be able to understand that these words of Jesus are Creative, Causative, Prophetic, Instructional and can only be spiritually discerned and can only be acted upon by way of The Spirit of God as they are manifested in the natural world.
Also, these verse should be included as part of a much larger teaching. Here are topical headings of this entire teaching, beginning in Matthew 24:1, which gives us the ‘big picture’:
1. Jesus Foretells The Destruction of the Temple. (This is prophetic, metaphorical and literal.)
2. Jesus’ Disciples ask Him About the sign of His coming and of the End of The Age.
3. Jesus Tells of The Signs, which, although originated in the Spiritual world, are literally manifested in the natural world, leading to of the End of the Age.
4. Jesus Foretells of The Abomination of Desolation. This is the literal manifestation of the final global defiance of and rebellion against God.
5. Jesus Tells of The Coming of the Son of Man. This is the sign that it is finished, this time for the world and creation. The Son is coming to remove His Elect from the earth and take us to our Heavenly home, to defeat the two beasts and the antichrist and to exact His Judgement on earth.
6. Jesus instructs how we can know the season of His return and the End of The Age by using the Fig Tree as a metaphor. Those who have ears to hear, must listen and heed His Words. 7. Jesus Instructs that No One Knows That Day and Hour of His Return and the End of The Age, but that we are to Stay Ready.
8. Jesus teaches about the reward and the consequences of readiness through The Parable of the Ten Virgins.
9. Jesus Teaches About the cost of being slothful, tardy and fearful and the rewards of faithfulness, trust and responsibility.
10. Jesus tells of the Final Judgment, gives the metaphor of the separation of the sheep, (the righteous) and the goats (the condemned) and the rewards of eternal life or eternal punishment.
11. Jesus reveals the plot of His crucifixion and death.
You are born, you live and you will die. You will have one chance at this. Knowing the sequence of events, the rewards of righteousness and the consequences of rebelliousness is paramount to your survival, both now and eternally.
THE RESCUE OF THE RIGHTEOUS
If you are a believer and follower of Christ, alive on earth when the Sixth Seal is broken, you will be one of those remaining, the remnant, who will live through the most amazing of experiences.
- You will see the sun darkened.
- The moon will go dark.
- Stars falling from heaven.
- The heavens shaken.
- The sign of the son of man in the heaven.
- The people of earth mourning.
- Jesus coming on the clouds with power.
- You will hear the angels and the trumpet call.
- Angels will gather you (Rapture you) with the elect from the four corners of the earth.
You will see the sun darkened, and the moon not giving its light, and stars falling from heaven, and seeing the powers of the heavens shaken. Then you will see the sign of the Son of Man appear in heaven, when all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and you will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.
Then you will see Him send out his angels and hear the loud trumpet-call, and they will gather you and his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.”
- You and a multitude will be taken (Raptured) before the Throne of God.
- You will hear an Elder telling you have come out of the great tribulation.
- You will no longer hunger, thirst, suffer or mourn.
After these things you will be among the great multitude which no one can count, from come from every nation and all the tribes, peoples, and languages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed in white robes, and palm branches in your hands; and you will cry out with a loud voice, saying,
“Salvation belongs to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb.” And all the angels will be standing around the throne and around the elders and the four living creatures; and they will fall on their faces before the throne and worship God, saying,
“Amen, blessing, glory, wisdom, thanksgiving, honor, power, and might belong to our God forever and ever. Amen.”
Then one of the elders will respond, saying to you, “These are the ones who come out of the great tribulation, and they have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. For this reason, you are before the throne of God, and you will serve Him day and night in His temple; and He who sits on the throne will spread His tabernacle over you. You will no longer hunger nor thirst, nor will the sun beat down on you, nor any scorching heat; for the Lamb in the center of the throne will be your shepherd, and will guide you to springs of the water of life; and God will wipe every tear from your eyes.” (also see Revelation 21:1-4)
THE PUNISHMENT OF THE REBELLIOUS
- You will see hail, fire, blood fall on the earth.
- 1/3 of the earth burned up.
- A huge asteroid hit the seas. The seas become blood.
- 1/3 the sea creatures die.
- An asteroid will hit the lakes and rivers.
- People will die from bitter waters. 1/3 the sun, moon starts darkened.
- A ‘star’ will fall to the earth.
- A smoking abyss will open.
- Locust will ascend from the abyss and will sting people for 5 months.
- No one will repent of their sins.
- The sun will scorch people on earth.
- You will gnaw your tongue from pain.
- The End will come.
But if you are alive at this time as an unbeliever, a rebel against God, you will have the unfortunate experience of living through the 8 more judgment events, and unless you repent before the sixth trumpet judgment, you will suffer through 7 more disastrous events of hail and fire mixed with blood hurled to the earth; and you will experience a third of the earth being burned up, and a third of the trees being burned up, and all the green grass being burned up.
You will see something like a great mountain burning with fire hurled into the sea; and a third of the sea will become blood, and a third of the creatures which are in the sea destroyed; and a third of the ships of the world destroyed.
Then you will see a great star fall from heaven, burning like a torch, and it will fall on a third of the rivers and on the springs of waters. The star is named Wormwood; and a third of the waters will become wormwood, and many people died from the waters because they were made bitter.
Then you will see a third of the sun, a third of the moon, and a third of the stars struck, so that a third of them would be darkened and the day would not shine for a third of it, and the night in the same way.
Then you will hear an eagle flying in midheaven, saying with a loud voice, “Woe, woe, woe to those who live on the earth, because of the remaining blasts of the trumpet of the three angels who are about to sound!”
Then you will see a star from heaven which will fall to the earth; and the key to the shaft of the abyss was given to Him. He will open the shaft of the abyss, and smoke will ascend out of the shaft like the smoke of a great furnace; and the sun and the air will be darkened from the smoke of the shaft. Then out of the smoke will come locusts upon the earth, and power will be given them, as the scorpions of the earth have power. They will not hurt the grass of the earth, nor any green thing, nor any tree, but only the people who do not have the seal of God on their foreheads. And they will not be permitted to kill anyone, but to torment those remaining on earth for five months; and their torment will be like the torment of a scorpion when it stings a person. And you and the other people will seek death but you will not find it; you will long to die, and death will evade you!
You will see locusts appearing as horses prepared for battle; and on their heads will appear to be crowns like gold, and their faces will appear as human faces. They will have hair like the hair of women, and their teeth like the teeth of lions. They will have breastplates of iron; and the sound of their wings will be like the sound of chariots, of many horses rushing to battle. They will have tails like scorpions, and stings; and in their tails will be their power to hurt you and other people for five months. They will have as king over them, the angel of the abyss; his name in Hebrew is Abaddon, and in the Greek he has the name Apollyon.
Then you will hear a voice from the four horns of the golden altar which is before God, saying to the sixth angel who has the trumpet, “Release the four angels who are bound at the great river Euphrates.” And the four angels, who are prepared for the hour and day and month and year, will be released, and they will kill a third of mankind.
The number of the armies of the horsemen will be two hundred million; You will hear the number of them. And this is how you will see the horses and those who sat on them: the riders will have breastplates the color of fire, of hyacinth, and of brimstone; and the heads of the horses will be like the heads of lions; and out of their mouths will come fire and smoke and brimstone. A third of mankind will be killed by these three plagues, by the fire, the smoke, and the brimstone which will come out of their mouths. For the power of the horses is in their mouths and in their tails; for their tails will be like serpents and have heads, and with them they do harm.
You and the rest of mankind, who were not killed by these plagues, will not repent of the works of your hands so as not to worship demons and the idols of gold, silver, brass, stone, and wood, which can neither see nor hear nor walk; and at this point you and others will not repent of your murders, nor of your witchcraft, nor of your sexual immorality, nor of your thefts.
Then the worst of the remaining judgments will fall upon you. You will be afflicted with harmful and painful sores, as will all the people who have the mark of the beast and who worshiped his image.
Then the sea will become blood, like that of a dead man; and every living ]thing in the sea will die.
Then the rivers and the springs of waters will become blood. And you will hear the angel of the waters saying, “Righteous are You, the One who is and who was, O Holy One, because You judged these things; for they poured out the blood of saints and prophets, and You have given them blood to drink. They deserve it.” And you will hear the altar saying, “Yes, Lord God, the Almighty, true and righteous are Your judgments.”
Then the sun will scorch you with fire. And the people will be scorched with fierce heat; and you will blaspheme the name of God who has the power over these plagues, and you will not repent so as to give Him glory.
Then the throne of the beast, and his kingdom will be darkened; and you will gnaw your tongue because of pain, and you will blaspheme the God of heaven because of you pain and your sores; and you will not repent of your deeds.
No One Knows That Day and Hour
Jesus has just told about the breaking of the 6th Tribulation Seal and the ‘Gathering of the Elect from the four winds of the earth’ (the Rapture), now He tells us what it will be like just before the rapture and the beginning of the final 7 years of judgment:
Matthew 24:36, “But concerning that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but the Father only.
A description of the coming Rapture of the saints and of those left behind – So will be the coming of the Son of man – you also must be ready.
For as were the days of Noah, so will be the coming of the Son of Man. For as in those days before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day when Noah entered the ark, and they were unaware until the flood came and swept them all away, so will be the coming of the Son of Man.Then two men will be in the field; one will be taken and one left.Two women will be grinding at the mill; one will be taken and one left.Therefore, stay awake, for you do not know on what day your Lord is coming.
But know this, that if the master of the house had known in what part of the night the thief was coming, he would have stayed awake and would not have let his house be broken into. Therefore, you also must be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect.
The Reward of the Faithful Servant
They were all called ‘servants’ but only the ones who did what the Master said are rewarded. The wicked disobedient will be cut to pieces and put with the hypocrites where there is weeping and gnashing of teeth.
Matthew 24:45, “Who then is the faithful and wise servant*, whom his master has set over his household, to give them their food at the proper time?Blessed is that servant whom his master will find so doing when he comes.Truly, I say to you, he will set him over all his possessions.
The Punishment of the Wicked
But if that wicked servant* says to himself, ‘My master is delayed,’ and begins to beat his fellow servants and eats and drinks with drunkards, the master of that servant will come on a day when he does not expect him and at an hour he does not know and will cut him in pieces and put him with the hypocrites. In that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
The Reward of the Wise and the Rejection of the Foolish
They were all expecting to meet the bridegroom (Jesus) but only the wise were allowed into the wedding party. The foolish were left alone.
Matthew 25:1, “Then the kingdom of heaven will be like ten virgins who took their lamps and went to meet the bridegroom. Five of them were foolish, and five were wise. For when the foolish took their lamps, they took no oil with them, but the wise took flasks of oil with their lamps. As the bridegroom was delayed, they all became drowsy and slept. But at midnight there was a cry, ‘Here is the bridegroom! Come out to meet him.’ Then all those virgins rose and trimmed their lamps. And the foolish said to the wise, ‘Give us some of your oil, for our lamps are going out.’ But the wise answered, saying, ‘Since there will not be enough for us and for you, go rather to the dealers and buy for yourselves.’And while they were going to buy, the bridegroom came, and those who were ready went in with him to the marriage feast, and the door was shut.Afterward the other virgins came also, saying, ‘Lord, lord, open to us.’
But he answered, ‘Truly, I say to you, I do not know you.’ Watch therefore, for you know neither the day nor the hour.
The Rewards of the Faithful and the Punishment Fearful Servants
They were all called ‘servants’ of the Master. But only the faithful are rewarded and the fearful are counted as worthless and are cast into the outer darkness.
Matthew 25:14, “For it will be like a man going on a journey, who called his servants and entrusted to them his property. To one he gave five talents, to another two, to another one, to each according to his ability. Then he went away. He who had received the five talents went at once and traded with them, and he made five talents more. So also he who had the two talents made two talents more.But he who had received the one talent went and dug in the ground and hid his master’s money.
Now after a long time the master of those servants came and settled accounts with them. And he who had received the five talents came forward, bringing five talents more, saying, ‘Master, you delivered to me five talents; here, I have made five talents more.’ His master said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant. You have been faithful over a little; I will set you over much. Enter into the joy of your master.’
And he also who had the two talents came forward, saying, ‘Master, you delivered to me two talents; here, I have made two talents more.’ His master said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant. You have been faithful over a little; I will set you over much. Enter into the joy of your master.’
He also who had received the one talent came forward, saying, ‘Master, I knew you to be a hard man, reaping where you did not sow, and gathering where you scattered no seed, so I was afraid, and I went and hid your talent in the ground. Here, you have what is yours.’ But his master answered him, ‘You wicked and slothful servant! You knew that I reap where I have not sown and gather where I scattered no seed? Then you ought to have invested my money with the bankers, and at my coming I should have received what was my own with interest. So, take the talent from him and give it to him who has the ten talents. For to everyone who has will more be given, and he will have an abundance. But from the one who has not, even what he has will be taken away. And cast the worthless servant into the outer darkness. In that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’
The Final Judgment
The faithful sheep on His right and the goats on His left. The sheep who showed compassion, mercy and servanthood are welcomed into the kingdom prepared for them since the foundation of the world.
The unfaithful goats on His left are told to depart from Him, and are called cursed, and sent into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels
Matthew 25:31, “When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit on his glorious throne.Before him will be gathered all the nations, and he will separate people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats.
And he will place the sheep on his right, but the goats on the left. Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick and you visited me, I was in prison and you came to me.’ Then the righteous will answer him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you drink? And when did we see you a stranger and welcome you, or naked and clothe you? And when did we see you sick or in prison and visit you?’ And the King will answer them, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.’
“Then he will say to those on his left, ‘Depart from me, you cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels. For I was hungry and you gave me no food, I was thirsty and you gave me no drink, I was a stranger and you did not welcome me, naked and you did not clothe me, sick and in prison and you did not visit me.’ Then they also will answer, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not minister to you?’ Then he will answer them, saying, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to me.’ And these will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.”
The Plot to Kill Jesus
With His teaching and instructing completed, Jesus reveals that everything we have heard which is planned ahead of time will be set into motion with His crucifixion. The fuse is lit. Nothing will ever be the same again.
Matthew 26:1, “When Jesus had finished all these sayings, he said to his disciples, “You know that after two days the Passover is coming, and the Son of Man will be delivered up to be crucified.”
Your Brother and Friend,
NEXT: THE WORDS OF JESUS – What Are You To Do With Them?, “Why Do You Trouble This Woman?”, Part 56
PREVIOUS: THE WORDS OF JESUS – What Are You To Do With Them?, “It will all be torn down”, Part 54.