END OF AN AGE OR END OF THE WORLD
By Ken Blue
“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?” Matthew 24:3.
The reader must understand that the four gospels are not written to, or about the church, the body of Christ. They concern Israel and the Old Testament promises of Israel’s: Kingdom of Heaven on earth, which will be ruled by Jesus Christ from Jerusalem. This is what is meant in the Lord’s Prayer, “Thy Kingdom come…”
The question in the above text is not about the end of the world or the destruction of planet earth. The word “world” comes from the Greek αἰών which means eon or age. The current age began after the flood of Noah and will continue until the Millennium. That is the “age to come” spoken of in Hebrews 6:5. The disciples are not asking about or concerned when the earth would be destroyed. They want to know when the present age would end, and the new age with His Kingdom would be established in Israel.
The Lord gives His disciples a list of signs that will be present in the days preceding the end of the age. Most of these are found in Matthew 24. It is important that we understand that the Lord is talking about things that concern the nation of Israel and those nations that seek to destroy them. (See Matthew 24:24. Mark 13:22. 2 Peter 2:1. 1 John 4:1. Rev. 16:13; 20:10.)
The age that will follow this present one will last another 1000 years, and then the earth is burned up. See Revelation 20:1-7. This is what Peter is speaking of in 2 Peter 3:10. The word for the earth there is a different Greek word and speaks of the literal planet.
So, believers should not concern themselves with the “end of the world.” It is at least one thousand and seven years down the road. What we should do is pray for Israel, pray for others, and make sure we are saved. Let not your heart be troubled. God’s program is right on schedule. However, we are to be on guard. “For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ. And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light. Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works. 2 Corinthians 11:13-15.
If you are saved, the signs of the end of the age should excite you because it means the rapture of the church is that much closer. Look up and don’t give up.
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Pastor Ken Blue was born in Boswell, Ark. In 1955 he accepted Christ as his Savior. He and his wife Joyce were married in 1955. They have 5 children. He graduated from Midwestern Baptist Bible College in 1969 and started the Open Door Baptist Church in Lynnwood, Wa. where he pastored for 39 years. Because of health issues (ALS) he was forced to resign as pastor. It is his desire to continue to be used of God to help pastors and believers through this ministry.