The Apocalypse Narrative

Luke 21:25-33 “And there will be signs in sun and moon and stars, and upon the earth distress of the natoins in perplexity at the roaring of the sea and the waves, men fainting with fear and with foreboding of what is coming on the world; for the powers of the heavens will be shaken. And then they will see the Son of man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. Now when these things begin to take place, look up and raise your heads, because your redemption is drawing near.” And he told them a parable: "Look at the fig tree, and all the trees; as soon as they come out in leaf, you see for yourselves know that the summer is already near. So also, when you see these things taking place, you know that the kingdom of God is near. Truly, I say to you, this generation will not pass away till all has taken place. Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away.

Matthew 24:29-34 "Immediately after the tribulation of those days the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not gives its light, and the stars will fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken; then will appear the sign of hte Son of man in heaven, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory; and he will send out his angels with a loud trumpet call, and they will gather his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other. "From the fig tree learn its lesson: as soon as its branch becomes tender and puts forth 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 till all these things take place. Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away.

In both accounts of the signs announcing the coming of the end from the gospels I quoted above Jesus says that all these things will take place in ‘this generation’.

It is believed that the members of the church of the first century thought that they were going to see the second-coming occur in their own generation, although obviously this did not happen.

I have never had this explained to me and I am hoping the people on this board may provide answers,

how does Jesus appear to say here to his disciples two thousand years ago that the end will occur before ‘this generation’ passes away?

we are this generation. this generation is the Church on earth until the end of time, when the last judgement, preceded by the tribulation, will occur.

I understand it possibly has a double meaning. One referencing the destruction of the temple when the Romans destroyed Jerusalam in 70AD.

I found a link with quite a bit of information at New Advent Catholic Encylopedia.

This is the search results I got from New Advent. Maybe you can try some other variations to get the exact answer you’re looking for.

Hope this helps somewhat.

May the peace of the Lord be with you.
Prodigal Son1

Scott hahn talked about this in a lecture I once heard. Shooting from the cuff here, The temple was a replica of heaven, it was were God lived, in the holy of holys.I can look it up if you wish.

Only if it is not too much difficulty for you…

And thanks for providing the link, to other poster.

the interpretation that ‘this generation’ represents the church would appear to make sense… Jesus often spoke in parables that no one understood at first, and perhaps this is what the words implied.

I was thinking recently of Jesus’ words about:

John 8:51 Truly, truly, I say to you, if any one keeps my word, he will never see death."

And thinking to myself, if what Jesus meant by ‘passing away’ did not imply the physical death but rather this generation would stay alive in the Spirit until it occurred?

Oracle on Egypt: See, the LORD is riding on a swift cloud on his way to Egypt; The idols of Egypt tremble before him, the hearts of the Egyptians melt within them. (Isa 19:1)

You would think God appeared physically in Egypt reading this scripture. Instead, God’s coming on a cloud was fulfilled by the arrival of the Assyrian army. (Isa 20:1-6) Coming on a cloud is the glory of God in His judgment.

And then they will see the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. (Luke 21:27)

You would think Jesus appeared physically when this scripture was fulfilled in 70 A.D. Instead, the Roman Army executed Jesus judgment of the Temple. (before the generation passed away)

Of course these verses point to the future as well. The Temple was a miniature version of the world. (Ps 78:69)

That was it! the temple was a miniature of the universe. That’s just exactly how Dr. Hahn explained it.

There is another comparison of the Temple and the cosmos filled with divine glory in (Isa 6:1-7)

Thank you.

That’s the best interpretation I’ve come across for that passage, and it does make sense too. Jesus often did speak in such a way that his true meaning was veiled or could mean something other than what was obvious, and that verse from Isaiah is an important one because it does resemble what the Lord speaks of here.

There are some problems that I would still pose for this interpretation if I could…:

  • He does not say that the Son will appear and simply Israel will mourn, but instead he says ‘all the tribes of the earth will mourn’, which the destruction of the temple and the dispersion could not seem to fit. When did all the tribes of the Earth mourn before the temple was destroyed? Or is Israel alone thought to represent the whole world (just as the temple represented the universe)?

The Greek word for earth is ge. It is often translated as “land.” In Jewish literature, it was common to use land as a reference for Israel and sea to refer to the gentile nations. Then the mourning would be done by the tribes of the land of Israel over the impending destruction of the Temple.

Thank you for your assistance. That is the best interpretation I have come across.

You’re welcome.

I got some of it out of the Ignatius Catholic Study Bible and some out of the book “Rapture” the end times error that leaves the bible behind by David B. Currie

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