Mark 13:1-13 As Jesus was leaving
the temple, one of his disciples said to him, “Look, Teacher! What massive
stones! What magnificent buildings!”
“Do you see all these great buildings?” replied Jesus. “Not one stone here will be
left on another; every one will be thrown down.”
3 As Jesus was sitting on the Mount of Olives opposite the
temple, Peter, James, John and Andrew asked him privately, 4 “Tell us, when will these things happen? And what will
be the sign that they are all about to be fulfilled?”
5 Jesus said to them: “Watch out that no one deceives you. 6 Many will come in my name, claiming, ‘I am he,’ and
will deceive many. 7 When
you hear of wars and rumors of wars, do not be alarmed. Such things must
happen, but the end is still to come. 8 Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against
kingdom. There will be earthquakes in various places, and famines. These are
the beginning of birth pains.
“You must be on your guard. You will be handed over to the local councils
and flogged in the synagogues. On account of me you will stand before governors
and kings as witnesses to them. 10 And the gospel
must first be preached to all nations. 11 Whenever you are arrested and brought to trial, do not
worry beforehand about what to say. Just say whatever is given you at the time,
for it is not you speaking, but the Holy Spirit.
“Brother will betray brother to death, and a father his child. Children
will rebel against their parents and have them put to death. 13 Everyone will hate you because of me, but the one who
stands firm to the end will be saved.
This teaching, called the Olivet Discourse, because it took
place on the Mt. of Olives, occurred on Wednesday of Jesus’ final week on
earth. He had spent much of the first part of the week in the Temple
; teaching and healing.
The Olivet Discourse is the longest answer to any question
in scriptures. This discourse is recorded in Matthew 24:1 - 25:46, Mark 13:1-37
and Luke 21:5-36.
Jesus had spoken to the Pharisees concerning judgment. And
when Jesus was leaving the temple a disciple asked Him about the temple
buildings, seemingly so that Jesus could explain how the judgment of which He
spoke related to the temple. Herod, who built the temple buildings that existed
during the time of Christ's earthly ministry, built them to last. Here Jesus
tells the disciples that not one stone of the temple would be left on top of
another. This is what occurred in A.D. 70 when Rome
led by Titus, destroyed Jerusalem
The Jews had rebelled against the Romans and the Roman army
surrounded the old city where they hid for 5 months. The Romans beat against
the walls, but the Jews had a lot of supplies, the walls were strong and they
kept holding them back. Eventually they ran out of food and the Romans scaled
the walls. Titus wanted to save the opulent Temple
, but the Jews burned it to the ground.
The things made of gold that resided in the temple melted as the temple
burned, and the gold ran down into the cracks between the stones. Every stone
was toppled from its place as people searched for the gold. “Not one stone here will be left on
another; every one will be thrown down.”
This temple was probably 10 stories high. One stone was 37 ½ ft by 12 ft by 18 ft!
The foundation stones were even larger! The temple was amazing! Huge! And
beautiful! But Jesus said not one stone would be left. Jesus’ prophecy was
fulfilled word for word. In fact He said in Luke 19:41-44 41 As he
approached Jerusalem and saw the city, he wept over it 42 and said, “If you, even you,
had only known on this day what would bring you peace—but now it is hidden from
your eyes. 43 The
days will come upon you when your enemies will build an embankment against you
and encircle you and hem you in on every side. 44 They will dash you to the ground, you and the children
within your walls. They will not leave one stone on another, because you did
not recognize the time of God’s coming to you.”
As they went over the Mt. of Olives
Peter, James, John and Andrew asked Him when this would happen. The Jews were
confused about the coming Messiah. In all the prophecies in the Old Testament
there wasn’t a clear differentiation between Christ’s first coming and His
second coming. In fact they didn’t really understand that there would be 2
comings. Jesus answers the disciple by giving two prophecies. The first: the
crushing of the temple. The second “when will we see the end of the age?”
Jesus lets them know this would be a different time then the
crushing of the temple. 7
When you hear of wars and rumors of wars, do not be alarmed. Such things
must happen, but the end is still to come. And something had
to happen first: Verse 10 And the gospel must first be preached to
all nations. Verses 4 – 13 give the description
of the church age.
Jesus first warns them about things that would happen that
should not be interpreted as signs:
Some would claim to
be Christ; deception.
There would be wars
and rumors of wars.
Then Jesus identifies the beginnings of birth pangs, a
metaphor for 'false alarm'
Nations rising up
against nations, and kingdoms against kingdoms.
Next He described more birth pangs which would lead to the
Persecution of the
followers of Jesus
The spread of Jesus'
message (the gospel) around the world.
These things are all happening and have been
happening. 100,000 earthquakes are felt every year. There
is famine in many countries. In World War II alone 72 MILLION people were
killed. Pestilence – the Black Plague in Europe
lasted 2 years and killed 100 million people! Believers are persecuted.
Jesus knew it all! He knows the beginning and the end. He
will get us through!
Labels: end times, Gospel of Mark, Jesus, Olivet Discourse