Carried away by the outward glory of God’s house
Jesus watches us as we put in our time, talents and treasures into the offering box. He does not necessarily assess the quality of our giving based on how much we are putting in, but rather on what is our motivation, as well as how much sacrifice it costs us in the giving of our time, talent and treasure for the enhancement of His Kingdom, vs 1-4.
While looking for the coming of His kingdom, we must not be carried away by the outward glory of God’s house, which we are, vs 5,6. However, the signs to watch out for, in relation to the second coming of Christ are, vs 7:
Deception, wars and rebellions, which are the very initial stages of the signs of His coming , vs 8-10,
As well as *earthquakes, famines and plagues, 11,
Persecution and imprisonment and being brought before kings and governers, are also important signs, vs 12, which will give us an opportunity to serve as a witness for Christ. With regard to this, we are encouraged not to prepare beforehand as to what we must say, for we will be given wisdom by the Holy Spirit to speak in a way that no one will be able to refute, vs 13-15!
Betrayals by close family members, is another sign, and although we will be hated by all, yet not a hair of our head will perish, yet, this will require endurance on our part, if we are to be saved ,vs 16-19!
As far as Israel is concerned:
It will be surrounded by armies, during which time they will need to flee the country, vs 20, 21, for all that has been prophesied will surely see its fulfillment, vs 22! Pregnant women and nursing mothers will have to beware, for it will be a time of such great persecution, until the time of the Gentiles is fulfilled, vs 23,24!
And finally, when we see signs in the sun, moon and stars, such that it will cause distress and anxiety to the Nations of the earth, on account of the powers of the heavens being shaken, then we will see the Son of Man arriving in a cloud with power and great glory, 25-27! However, those who belong to Christ need not fear all these things which are to take place, for they are signs that our redemption is near, vs 28. And Jesus assured us that these things will surely come to pass. Therefore, we need to be those who recognise the signs of the times, and appropriately prepare ourselves to meet Him on His arrival, vs 29-33! If we allow ourselves to be anxious or drunk and distracted by the things happening around us, then that day will come upon us without us being prepared as we should be, 34,35! Therefore, we need to stay alert in prayer, seeking God for strength to escape all these things that are sure to happen on earth before Christ comes, vs 36.
Jesus Himself taught these things during the day, while at night He stayed on the Mount of Olives to pray, before He could be ready with a fresh Word for all those who came to Him early the next morning, vs 37,38. Let us take these prophetic warnings to heart, making sure to do what we need to do, so as to be ready to go with the Lord when He comes for us! Amen.