Page images

Luke xxi. 6. the days will come, in the which


tions ; for it is remarkable, that the temple was burnt by the Romans in the same month, and on the same day of the month, on which it had been burned by the Babylonians. See Josephus, War, b. vi. c. 4. Josephus computes the number of those who perished in the siege at eleven hundred thousand, besides those who were slain in other places, War, b. vi. c. 9; and if the Romans had gone on destroying in this manner, the whole nation of the Jews would in a short time have been utterly extirpated : but, for the sake of the elect (the Jews,) that they might not be entirely destroyed, and, for the sake of the Christians particularly, the days were shortened.

Josephus relates, that the Jews themselves first set fire to the porticos of the temple, and then the Romans; when one of the soldiers, neither waiting for the word of command, nor fearing to perpetrate such an action, but hurried on by a divine impulse, threw a burning brand in at the golden window, and thereby set fire to the buildings of the temple itself. Yet Titus was still for preserving the holy place, but the anger and hatred of his soldiers against the Jews overcame their reverence for their general; a soldier in the dark set fire to the doors, and thus, as Josephus says, “ the temple was burnt, contrary to the will of Cæsar.” The Romans burnt the most extreme parts of the city, and dug up the foundations of the walls, reserving only three towers, and a part of the wall, as a memorial of their own valour, and for the better encampment of the soldiers. Afterwards, we read in the Jewish Talmud, and in Maimonides, that Terentius Rufus, who was left to command the army, did with a ploughshare tear up the foundation of the temple ; thereby signally fulfilling the prophecy of Micah iii. 12. Eusebius too affirms, that it was ploughed up by the Romans, and that he saw it lying in ruins. So literally were our Saviour's words accomplished, in the ruin and desolation of the city and of the temple. Josephus further asserts, that there was no part of Judæa which did not partake of the calamities of the capital city. The Romans pursued, and took, and slew the Jews every where, fulfilling again that prediction, “ Wheresoever the carcase is (the Jewish nation, morally and judicially dead,) there will the eagles (the Romavs, whose ensign was an eagle) be gathered together."

Jerusalem also, according to the prediction of our Lord, was to be trodden down by the Gentiles. Accordingly it has never since been in the possession of the Jews. It was first in subjection to the Romans, afterwards to the Saracens, then to the Franks, next to the Mamelukes, and now to the Turks. Thus has the prophecy of Christ been most literally and terribly fulfilled, on a people who are suill preserved, as continued monuments of the truth of our Lord's prediction, and of the truth of the Christian religion (e).

We have hitherto considered this passage as relating to the destruction of Jerusalem only, which was its primary application ; but, like every other prophecy, it had its literal and typical signification. Our Saviour loses sight, as it were, of his former subject, in the contemplation of the end of the world, and the general ju nent. “ It appears,” says Bishop Newton, “next to impossible, that any man should duly consider these prophecies, and their exact com.

(e) Bishop Newton on the Prophecies,

e Luke xix.

Matt. xxiv, 3.

Mark xiii. 3.
Matt. xxiv. 3.

Mark xiii. 3.

Luke xxi.7.

Mark xiii. 4.

Mark xiii. 5.

come in

e there shall not be left here one stone upon ano- Matt. xxiv. 2. ther that shall not be thrown down.

And as he sat upon the mount of Olives over Mark xiii. 3. against the temple, the disciples, Peter, and James, and John, and Andrew, came unto him privately, asked him privately,

And they asked him, saying, Master, but Tell us when shall these things be? and what Matt. xxiv. 3. shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world? when all these things shall be fulfilled ?

And Jesus answering them, began to say unto them, Take heed that no man deceive you. Matt. xxiv, 4. For many shall

my name, saying, I Matt. xxiv. 5. am Christ; and shall deceive many. *and the time draweth near: go ye not therefore Luke xxi. 8. after them.

And ye shall hear of wars and rumours of Matt. xxiv. 6. wars : But when


shall hear of wars,
and rumours of wars,
and commotions, be not terrified :
see that ye be not troubled, for all these things
must needs
first come to pass,
but the end shall not be yet.

Then said he unto them, Nation shall rise Luke xxi. 10.
against nation, and kingdom against kingdom.

great earthquakes shall be in divers Luke xxi. II. places;

* Or, and, The lime, Matt. iii, 2. and iv, 17.

Luke xxi, 9.

Mark xiii, 7.

Luke xxi. 9.

Matt. xxiv. 6.

Mark xiii, 7.
Luke xxi, 9.

Mark xiii. 7.

pletion, and, if he is a believer, not be confirmed in his faith, or if he is an infidel, not be converted." As soon as the Gospel is preached to every creature now under heaven, and the fulness of the Gentiles be accomplished, then shall the Son of Man come in the clouds of heaven, to take vengeance on his enemies; and with great power and glory bring deliverancr as in the days of the destruction of Jerusalem, to those who believe in Him, and trust in his promises for salvation and mercy ($).

(s) For a further comparison of this great prophecy, and its primary fulfilment, see Archbishop Newcome's Life of Christ, who endeavours to explain away many of the prodigies related by Josephus. ----Jortin's Ecclesiastical History.—Mr. Gisborne's work lately published. Bishop Horsley's Sermons, on the application of the Prophecy to the end of the world.— The various Commentators; and Dr. Adam Clarke's notes to the chapters in St. Matthew.-Dr. Hales on the four Hypotheses of the various Interpreters of these Prophecies.Analysis, vol. ii. part ii. p. 1270.


Matt, xxiv. S.

Mark xiii. 9.

Luke xxi. 13.

Mark xiii. 10.

Mark xiii. 11.

Matt. xxiv. 7. and there shall be famines, and pestilences,
Mark xiii. 8. and troubles,
Luke xxi. 11. and fearful sights, and great signs shall there be

from heaven.

All these are the beginning of sorrows.

But take heed to yourselves : for
Luke xxi. 12. before all these, they shall lay their hands on you,

and persecute you, delivering you up;
Mark xiii. 9. they shall deliver you up to the councils ;
Luke xxi. 12. to the synagogues,
Mark xiii. 9. (and in the synagogues ye

shall be beaten :)
Luke xxi. 12 and into prisons,
Matt. xxiv. 9. to be afflicted,
Mark xii. 9. and ye shall be brought before rulers and kings

for my sake, for a testimony, Luke xxi, 12. for my name's sake.

And it shall turn to you for a testimony Mark xiii. 9. against them.

And the Gospel must first be published among all nations.

* But when they shall lead you, and deliver i Matt. x. 19. you up, take no thought beforehand what ye shall speak, neither do yë premeditate :

8 Settle it therefore in your hearts, not to medi- 8 Matt. x. 19. tate before what


answer :
Mark xiii. 11. but whatsoever shall be given you in that hour,

that speak ye:

For I will give you a mouth, and wisdom, which all your adversaries shall not be able to

gainsay or resist : Mark xiii. 11. for it is not ye that speak, but the Holy Ghost.

Now the brother shall betray the brother to death, and the father the son; and children shall rise up against their parents, and shall cause them

to be put to death. Luke xxi, 16. And ye shall be betrayed both by parents, and

brethren, and kinsfolks, and friends, and some of

you shall they cause to be put to death ; Matt. xxiv. 9. and ye shall be hated of all nations for my

name's sake.

And then shall many be offended, and shall betray one another, and shall hate one another.

" But there shall not an hair of your head pe- h Matt. x. 30. rish.

In your patience possess ye your souls.
And many false prophets shall rise, and shall

Luke xxi. 14.

Luke xxi. 15.

Mark xiii. 12.

Matt. xxiv. 10.

Luke xxi, 18.

Luke xxi, 19.

Matt. xxiv.

deceive many.






And because iniquity shall abound, the love of Matt. xxiv. many shall wax cold.

But he that shall endure unto the end, the Matt. xxiv. same shall be saved,

And this Gospel of the kingdom shall be Matt. xxiv. preached in all the world, for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come.

But when ye shall see the abomination of de- Mark xiii. 14. solation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, standing where it ought not, in the holy place, (whoso readeth, let him under- Matt. xxiv. stand :)

And when ye shall see Jerusalem compassed Luke xxi. 20. with armies, then know that the desolation thereof is nigh.

Then let them which are in Judæa flee to the Luke xxi. 21. mountains; and let them which are in the midst of it depart out; and let not them that are in the countries enter thereinto.

And let him that is on the housetop not go Mark xiii. 15. down into the house, neither enter therein, to take any thing out of his house:

Neither let him which is in the field return back Matt. xxiv. to take his clothes.

For these be the days of vengeance, that all Luke xxi. 22. things which are written may be fulfilled.

But woe unto them that are with child, and to Luke xxi. 23. them that give suck in those days ! for there shall be great distress in the land, and wrath upon this people.

And they shall fall by the edge of the sword, Luke xxi. 24 and shall be led away captive into all nations : and Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles shall be fulfilled.


your flight be not in the win- Matt. xxiv. ter, neither on the sabbath day :

For in those days shall be great tribulation, shall be affliction, such as was not from the be- Mark xiii. 19. ginning of the creation of the world

Matt. xxiv.21. which God created unto this time, neither shall Mark xiii. 19. be, no, nor ever shall be.

Mat. xxiv, 21. And except that the Lord had shortened those Mark xiii. 20 days,

But pray ye


Mark xiii. 19.

Mat. xxiv.21. Mark xiii, 21.

man shall

Matt. xxiv.26.

Matt. xxiv.27.

Matt. xxiv.28.

Mark xiii. 24.

Mat. xxlv. 22. there should no flesh be saved :

Jerusalem Mark xiii. 20. but for the elect's sake, whom he hath chosen, he

hath shortened the days.
And then if
say unto you,

Lo here
is Christ; or, lo, he is there; believe him not:
Matt. xxiv.24. For there shall arise false Christs, and false pro-

phets, and shall shew great signs and wonders ;
insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall de-

ceive the very elect.
Mark xiii. 23. But take ye heed : behold, I have foretold you

all things.

Wherefore, if they shall say unto you, Behold he is in the desert; go not forth : behold, he is in the secret chambers; believe it not.

For as the lightning cometh out of the east, and shineth even unto the west ; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.

For wheresoever the carcase is, there will the i Lukexvii.37. eagles be gathered together.

Matt. xxiv.29. Immediately after the tribulation of those days
Luke xxi. 25. there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon,

and in the stars; and upon the earth distress of
nations, with perplexity; the sea and the waves

Luke xxi. 28. Men's hearts failing them for fear, and for look-

ing after those things which are coming on the

earth : for Mark xiii. 24. the sun shall be darkened, and the moon shall not

give her light, Matt.xxiv.29. and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the

powers of the heavens shall be shaken:

And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn,

And then they shall see the Son of man Matt.xxiv.30. coming in the clouds of heaven, with power and

great glory.

And then shall he send his angels, Matt. xxiv.31. ** with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall k 1 Cor. xv.52.

gather together his elect from the four winds, Mark xiii. 27. from the uttermost part of the earth, to the utter- a great voice.

most part of heaven, Matt.xxiv.31. from one end of heaven to the other.

And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh.


Mark xiii. 26.

Mark xiii. 27.

1 Thess. iv. 16.

Or, with a

Luke xxi. 28.

« PreviousContinue »