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The Temple Will Be Destroyed

24 Jesus left the Temple and was walking away. But his followers came to show him the Temple’s buildings. Jesus asked, “Do you see all these buildings? I tell you the truth. Every stone will be thrown down to the ground. Not one stone will be left on another.”

Later, Jesus was sitting on the Mount of Olives. His followers came to be alone with him. They said, “Tell us when these things will happen. And what will happen to show us that it is time for you to come again and for the world to end?”

Jesus answered: “Be careful that no one fools you. Many people will come in my name. They will say, ‘I am the Christ.’ And they will fool many people. You will hear about wars and stories of wars that are coming. But don’t be afraid. These things must happen before the end comes. Nations will fight against other nations. Kingdoms will fight against other kingdoms. There will be times when there is no food for people to eat. And there will be earthquakes in different places. These things are like the first pains when something new is about to be born.

“Then men will arrest you and hand you over to be hurt and kill you. They will hate you because you believe in me. 10 At that time, many who believe will lose their faith. They will turn against each other and hate each other. 11 Many false prophets will come and cause many people to believe false things. 12 There will be more and more evil in the world. So most people will stop showing their love for each other. 13 But the person who continues to be strong until the end will be saved. 14 The Good News about God’s kingdom will be preached in all the world, to every nation. Then the end will come.

15 “Daniel the prophet spoke about ‘the horrible thing that destroys.’[a] You will see this terrible thing standing in the holy place.” (You who read this should understand what it means.) 16 “At that time, the people in Judea should run away to the mountains. 17 If a person is on the roof[b] of his house, he must not go down to get anything out of his house. 18 If a person is in the field, he must not go back to get his coat. 19 At that time, it will be hard for women who are pregnant or have nursing babies! 20 Pray that it will not be winter or a Sabbath day when these things happen and you have to run away. 21 This is because at that time there will be much trouble. There will be more trouble than has ever happened since the beginning of the world. And nothing as bad as that will ever happen again. 22 God has decided to make that terrible time short. If that time were not made short, then no one would go on living. But God will make that time short to help the people he has chosen. 23 At that time, someone might say to you, ‘Look, there is the Christ!’ Or another person might say, ‘There he is!’ But don’t believe them. 24 False Christs and false prophets will come and perform great things and miracles. They will do these things to the people God has chosen. They will fool them, if that is possible. 25 Now I have warned you about this before it happens.

26 “If people tell you, ‘The Christ is in the desert’—don’t go there. If they say, ‘The Christ is in the inner room’—don’t believe it. 27 When the Son of Man comes, he will be seen by everyone. It will be like lightning flashing in the sky that can be seen everywhere. 28 Wherever there is a dead body, there the vultures will gather.

29 “Soon after the trouble of those days, this will happen:

‘The sun will grow dark.
    And the moon will not give its light.
The stars will fall from the sky.
    And everything in the sky will be changed.’ Isaiah 13:10; 34:4

30 “At that time, there will be something in the sky that shows the Son of Man is coming. All the peoples of the world will cry. They will see the Son of Man coming on clouds in the sky. He will come with great power and glory. 31 He will use a loud trumpet to send his angels all around the earth. They will gather his chosen people from every part of the world.

32 “The fig tree teaches us a lesson: When its branches become green and soft, and new leaves begin to grow, then you know that summer is near. 33 So also, when you see all these things happening, you will know that the time is near, ready to come. 34 I tell you the truth. All these things will happen while the people of this time are still living! 35 The whole world, earth and sky, will be destroyed, but the words I have said will never be destroyed!

When Will Jesus Come Again?

36 “No one knows when that day or time will be. Even the Son[c] and the angels in heaven don’t know. Only the Father knows. 37 When the Son of Man comes, it will be the same as what happened during Noah’s time. 38 In those days before the flood, people were eating and drinking. They were marrying and giving their children to be married. They were still doing those things until the day Noah entered the boat. 39 They knew nothing about what was happening. But then the flood came, and all those people were destroyed. It will be the same when the Son of Man comes. 40 Two men will be working together in the field. One man will be taken and the other left. 41 Two women will be grinding grain with a hand mill.[d] One woman will be taken and the other will be left.

42 “So always be ready. You don’t know the day your Lord will come. 43 Remember this: If the owner of the house knew what time a thief was coming, then the owner would be ready for him. The owner would watch and not let the thief enter his house. 44 So you also must be ready. The Son of Man will come at a time you don’t expect him.

45 “Who is the wise and trusted servant? The master trusts one servant to give the other servants their food at the right time. 46 When the master comes and finds the servant doing his work, the servant will be very happy. 47 I tell you the truth. The master will choose that servant to take care of everything the master owns. 48 But what will happen if the servant is evil and thinks his master will not come back soon? 49 Then that servant will begin to beat the other servants. He will feast and get drunk with others like him. 50 And the master will come when the servant is not ready and is not expecting him. 51 Then the master will punish that servant. He will send him away to be among the hypocrites. There people will cry and grind their teeth with pain.

Footnotes

  1. 24:15 ‘the horrible . . . destroys.’ Mentioned in Daniel 9:27; 12:11 (cf. Daniel 11:31).
  2. 24:17 roof In Bible times houses were built with flat roofs. The roof was used for drying things such as flax and fruit. And it was used as an extra room, as a place for worship and as a place to sleep in the summer.
  3. 24:36 Even the Son Some Greek copies do not have this phrase.
  4. 24:41 mill Two large, round, flat rocks used for grinding grain to make flour.

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