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MATT. xxiv. he preached in all the world, for a witness stand.) 16 Then let them which be in unto all nations; and then shall the end Judea flee into the mountains: 17 Let come.
him which is on the house-top not come 15 When ye, therefore, shall see the down to take anything out of his house abomination of desolation, spoken of by 18 Neither let him which is in the field Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoso readeth, let him under
that readeth understand,) then let them that 16 Mark xij.
be in Judea flee to the mountains: 15 And 17 no thought beforehand what ye shall speak, let him that is on the house-top not go down neither do ye premeditate: but whatsoever into the house, neither enter therein, to take
shall be given you in that hour, that speak anything out of his house : 10 And let him 18 10 ye: for it is not ye that speak, but the Holy that is in the field not turn back again for to
17 But woe to them 19 Ghost. 12 Now, the brother shall betray the take up his garment. brother to death, and the father the son: and children shall rise up against their parents,
Luke xxi. and shall cause them to be put to death. passed with armies, then know that the de9" And ye shall be hated of all men for my solation thereof is nigh. 21 Then let them 16 13 naine's sake: but he that shall endure unto which are in Judea flee to the mountains; the end, the same shall be saved.
and let them which are in the midst of it de15 14 But when ye shall see the abomination part out; and let not them that are in the
of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the proplet, standing where it ought not, (let him 11; where the abomination that maketh Luke xxi.
desolate,” or, as the Septuagint renders it, before, what ye shall answer. 15 For I will
- the abomination of desolations,” is express give you a mouth and wisdom, which all ly connected with the desolation of the tem your adversaries shall not be able to gainsay ple and city. Josephus says, (Ant. X. c. xi. nor resist. 16 And ye shall be betrayed both 7,) that Daniel here foretold the desolation by parents, and brethren, and kinsfolks, and of his country by the Romans, as well as by be put 10 death. 17 And ye shall be hated of Antiochus Epiphanes; and such was probaall men for my name's sake. 18 But there bly the general opinion of the Jews. The shall not a hair of your head perish. 19 In Roman armies were an abomination to the your patience possess ye your souls.
Jews, for they were idolaters, and carried 15 And when ye shall see Jerusalem com- with them the ensigns as well as the rites of
idolatry; that they also made desolate, needs by the New Testament writers, and Jewish not be shown. —standing in the holy place ; ] Suthors of their day, to a large part merely of not in the city itself, but on the ground imthe world then known, to the extent of the mediately “compassing" it, (see Luke,) Roman empire, &c.* Notwithstanding the which also was regarded as holy. Jerusalem scantiness of ecclesiastical records of that was accordingly besieged by the Roman age, enough remain to show that, before the general, Cestius Gallus, in Oct. A. D. 66, destruction of Jerusalem, the gospel was who even penetrated into the lower town, and actually preached in almost every province of might then, says Josephus, have taken the the Roman empire, and in some countries to whole city, had he persevered. But, apprethe east of it. --and then shall the end come,] hending treachery, and insidiously dissuaded of which the disciples had inquired, (ver. 3,) by some of his officers, he suddenly retreated, the end of Jerusalem and of the Jewish to the astonishment of the Jews themselves, nation.
(J. War, ii. c. xix. 6–9.) Thus, Jerusalem Ver. 15. In this verse, Christ advertises was spared nearly four years longer, and them of the particular event which should be abundant opportunity afforded the Christians token the near approach of that end, and be to flee from the city and country; and this the signal for them to flee. Substituting the was probably the time of their flight, mentionplainer language of Luke, for the obscurer ed by Eusebius; (see notes on ver
. 13.) espressions of Matthew and Mark, it was Ver. 16. —them which be in Judea, &c.;] when they should " see Jerusalem compassed not only those that should be in Jerusalem, with armies." —the abomination of desolation] but all the Christians in Judea, were then to was accordingly, the Roman armies.- - spoken flee, as it appears from Eusebius (see notes of by Daniel,] see Dan. ix. 27; xi. 31; xii. to ver. 13) they actually did. Josephus says
that many of the most eminent Jews now • It is the word used in Luke ii. 1,-“ There went out a decree froin Cesar Augustus, that all the world sh uld be
swam away from the city, as from a ship ered;" where it can, of course, include no more than the when it was going to sink." (J. War, ii. c. Kenan empire. It is used also in Acıs xi. 28 ; xix. 27 ; xxiv. xx. 1, and c. xix. 6.) From this time till the 5; where it must be taken with equal, and sometimes even overthrow of the city, the whole country lay fines merely of a province: see Ant. viii. c. xiii 4 where notes to ver. 21.) busana so include only the extent of an empire, and some in all the horrors of a bloody anarchy; (see he says that Ahab sent persons over all the world to discover the prophet Elijah; he also makes Obadiah to remind the Ver. 17, 18. Strong, hyperbolic expresrophet that the king had sought for him over all the world; sions, urging them to be instant in their brauch it is evident, from the nature of the case, that no were is meant than the neighbouring countries.
flight. —let him which is on the house-top not
MATT. xxiv. return back to take his clothes. 19 And of the world to this time, no, nor ever woe unto them that are with child, and shall be. 22 And except those days to them that give suck in those days ! should be shortened, there should no flesh 20 But pray ye that your flight be not be saved: but for the elect's sake, those in the winter, neither on the Sabbath-days shall be shortened. day: 21 For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning
created unto this time, neither shall be.
20 And except that the Lord had shortened 22
the house, let him not come down to take it 18 21 countries enter thereinto. 2 For these be the away: and he that is in the field, let him like
days of vengeance, that all things which are wise not return back.] 19 written may be fulfilled. 23 But woe unto
them that are with child, and to them that 21 give suck in those days for there shall be the Idumeans from without, distracted with
great distress in the land, and wrath upon the fiercest, bloodiest factions within, overrun 17 this people. (Parallel with ver. 17 and 18 of by immense hordes of robbers and murderers,
Matr. is Luke xvii. 31. In that day he which Ă. D. 67, 68,) who openly committed their shall be upon the house-top, and his stuff in massacres in the very streets of the cities and
villages; and, at length, the country subdued come down, &c.,] but hasten away. The by Vespasian, in A. D. 69. Then came the houses of the Jews, like those in the same siege of Jerusalem, with its unequalled horcountry at the present day, had flat roofs, on rors. From March, A. D. 70, to the followwhich the inhabitants spent much of their ing September, multitudes without number, time; and as these roofs were often connected, who had come up to the feast of the Passover, they afforded a communication from one part were caged within the narrow circuit of the of the city, or village, to another.—'his walls, butchered by the swords of the mad clothes ;) properly his tunic or robe,~a loose, factions within, as well as of the Romans flowing garment thrown over the other dress, without; or wasting away under a famine but laid aside in the labours of the field. that at length drove mothers to devour their
Ver. 19, 20. --woe unto them that, &c.] own children. More than one million perishbecause their condition would be am impedi- ed in the siege and capture of the city. (J. ment to their flight, and expose them to pecu- War, b. ii. c. XX. to b. vi. c. ix.) Josephus liar distress in the general commotion. —that says, “It appears to me that the misfortunes your flight be not in the winter,] when sub- of all men, from the beginning of time, sink sistence would be difficult. Snow often falls in comparison with those of the Jews.' in the hill-country of Palestine, and the cold "Neither did any other city ever suffer such is sometimes so great as to endanger life. misery, nor did any age ever breed a genera
neither on the Sabbath-day,) when the tra- tion more fruilful wickedness." (J. War, ditions of the Jews did not allow them to tra- Pref. 4, v. c. x. 5.) - from the beginning of vel more than about two thirds of a mile, ex- the world.] World, -kosmos. cept on extraordinary occasions; nor even Ver. 22. Had not this tribulation been then, without many hindrances.
brought to a speedy end, all the inhabitants, Ver. 21. For then, &c.;] i. e. from that Christians who had fled to the mountains, as time onwards, till the actual destruction of well as Jews who remained behind, must the city; for this, it is said, in verse 29, was have perished by famine or slaughter; as to take place "immediately after the tribula- will be evident to every reader of Josephus. tion," &c. If the compassing of Jerusalem by --for the elect's sake,] the believers, who are armies, (ver. 15,) was the attack made by so often, in the New Testament, called the Cestius, (A. D. 66,) this “ tribulation," it elect, or chosen. those days shall be shorten would seem from the order of the prophecy, ed.] Accordingly, the Jews themselves madmust have been in the four following years, ly hastened the end of the struggle, by their including the final siege of the city, and end- mutual slaughters and devastations. After ing with its capture, A. D. 70. At any rate, the unexpected retreat of Cestius, “there the whole of this period was one of indescri- were disorders and civil wars in every city; bable distress, with the Jews; Galilee and and all those that were at quiet from the Samaria ravaged by Vespasian, (A. D. 67,) Romans, turned their hands one against and nearly 100,000 of the inhabitants put to another." J. War, iv. c. iii. 2.) While the sword, so that many villages were utterly Titus was advancing to Jerusalem, the three depopulated ; Perea invaded and conquered, factions within the city were daily butchering (A. D. 68;) and, more wretched than all, each other, and burning the store-houses of udea, under a reign of terror surpassing even provisiong; “as if,” says Josephus, "they that of the French revolution, was invaded by had done it on purpose to serve the Romans,
Mart. xxiv, 23 Then if any man shall say unto unto you, Behold, he is in the desert; go you, Lo, here is Christ, or there; believe not forth: behold, he is in the secret it not. 24 For there shall arise false chambers; believe it not. 27 For as the Christs, and false prophets, and shall lightning cometh out of the east, and show great signs and wonders; insomuch shineth even unto the west; so shall also that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the coming of the Son of man be. 28 For the very elect. 25 Behold, I have told wheresoever the carcass is, there will the you before, (literally, I have foretold eagles be gathered together. you.] 26 Wherefore, if they shall say
even the elect. 23 But take ye heed: behold 25 MARK xiii.
I have foretold you all things. 23 21 And then, if any man shall say to you, 24 But in those days, after that tribulation, 29
Lo, here is Christ; or, lo, he is there, be the sun shall be darkened, and the moon 24 lieve him not: 22 For false Christs and shall not give her light. % And the stars of
false prophets shall rise, and show signs and wonders, 10 seduce, if it were possible,
Son of man be in his day. 25 But first must LUKE xxi.
he suffer many things, and be rejected of this (Parallel with ver. 23, 26, 27, 28, of generation. : 26 Two men shall be in 23-26 Mati. is Luke xvii. 23, 24, 37. 23 And they ihe field ; the one shall be taken, and the
shall say to you. See here! or, See there other left. 27 And they answered and said 27 go not after ihem, ror follow them. 24 For unto him, Where, Lord? And he said unto
as the lightning that lighteneth out of the them, Wheresoever the body is, thither will 28 one pari under heaven, shineth unto the the eagles be gathered together.] other part under heaven; so also shall the
the siege of Jerusalem, (A. D. 70,) a false by destroying what the city had laid op prophet persuaded the people that “God against the siege, and by thus cutting off the commanded them to ascend the temple, and nerves of their own power. So they that they should receive signs of their deliwere taken by means of the famine, which it verance;" but the temple was burned that tras impossible they should have been, unless very day, and all his followers perished. they had prepared the way for it by this pro- Josephus also says, that, in the siege, " there cedare.” (War, v. c. i. 4.) They continued was a great number of false prophets subornthis work of self-destruction, even during the ed by the tyrants to impose on the people, siege, slaying great numbers, and burning who announced to them ihat they should wait entire streets. (J. War, v. c. iii-vi.) Final- for deliverance from God; and this was in ly, they deserted their strong holds; so that order to keep them from deserting.” (War, when Titus took the city, and beheld the vi. c. v. 1, 2.) One reason why these prestrength of its fortifications, he exclaimed, tended deliverers, or Messiahs, were so readi"We certainly have had God for our assistant ly believed, was, the strong persuasion among in this war, and it was no other than God the Jews at this time, that their Messiah was who drove the Jews out of these fortifications; then to appear. (Jos. War, vi. c. v. 4.) for what could the hands of men, or any ma- -if possible, they shall deceive the very elecl.) cbines, do towards overthrowing these tow- There was no natural impossibility of their ers!" (J. War, vi. c. ix. 1.)
deceiving the Christians; otherwise Christ Ver. 23. Then,) in the time of that tribula- would not have taken so much care to foretion; or, perhaps, reverting indefinitely to the warn his disciples. He “foretold" them, in whole period thus far described, as preceding order to secure them against such deception. the destruction of Jerusalem.
Ver. 27, 28. His coming would not be like Ver. 24–26. We have accounts of many that of these false Christs, merely in the desuch impostors in Judea, at the period refer- serl, or secret chambers, so that it could be red to. An Egyptian false prophet (about 1. said, lo here, or there ; but, like the lightning D. 58) led 4000 out into the deserl;” (Acts which lights up the whole horizon, (see xxi. 38;) and also persuaded a multitude in Luke,) his coming would be over all the face Jerusalem to go with him to the mount of of the land. Or, to change the figure, whitherOlives, whence he would make the walls of soever the carcass of the Jewish nation exthe city fall down at his command. (Jos. tended abroad, to the same extent would his Ant. xx. c. viii. 6.) In the same passage, coming be seen, like a multitude of eagles Josephus mentions other impostors, who pre- devouring the dead body. There is, perhaps, vailed on many to follow them into "the de- no allusion intended to the eagles on the sert," where they would show “wonders and Roman standards; much less, any reference signs.". Another impostor (about A. D. 60) to the direction in which the Roman army sedaced a multitude, "proinising them free approached, from east to west,—which indom and deliverance from the miseries they deed does not appear to have been the course were under, if they would but follow him as it took. —the coming of, &c.] parousia. The far as the desert." (Ant. xx. c. viii. 10.) In Jews were accustomed to call any interposiall these cases, the deladed followers were of divine Providence, an appearing (epiphon slain or dispersed by the Roman troops. In neia) or coming (parousia) of God.
Matt. xxiv. 29 Immediately after the tribulation of and they shall see the Son of man coming those days, shall the sun be darkened, in the clouds of heaven, with power and and the moon shall not give her light, and great glory. 31 And he shall send his the stars shall fall from heaven, and the angels with a great sound of a trumpet, powers of the heavens shall be shaken: [Griesbach, with a trumpet of great 30 And then shall appear the sign of the sound,] and they shall gather together his Son of man in heaven: and then shall all elect, from the four winds, from one end the tribes of the earth (or land] mourn, of heaven to the other.
Mark xiii. . heaven shall fall, and the powers that are in shall he send his angels, and shall gather to.
with great power and glory. 27 And then 31 30 heaven shall be shaken. 26 And then shall they see the Son of man coming in the clouds, The uitermost part of the earth to the utter.
gether his elect from the four winds, from
most part of heaven. LUKE xxi. 29 24 And they shall fall by the edge of the
LUKE xxi. sword, and shall be led away captive into all waves roaring; 26 Men's hearts failing them 30 nations; and Jerusalem shall be trodden for fear, and for looking after those things down of the Gentiles, until the times of the which are coming on the earth: for the pow. Gentiles be fultilled. 25 And there shall be ers of heaven shall be shaken. 27 And then signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the shall they see the Son of man coming in a stars; and upon the earth (or land) distress cloud, with power and great glory. % And of nations, with perplexity; the sea and the when these ihings begin to come to pass,
then look up, and lift up your heads: for your Ver. 29–31. A representation, in prophetic redemption draweth nigh. style, of the end, the actual dissolution of the Jewish state; when, as Luke expresses it in --shall the sun be darkened . . . . heavens plainer language, the Jews should “fall by shall be shaken ;) figures that should probably the edge of the sword, and be led away cap- be taken together, as forming simply the tive into all nations, and Jerusalem be trods usual imagery in prophecies of similar events, den down of the Gentiles,” &c. This fixes (see above,) and that should not be separate the event referred to. The bold, Asiatic ly applied, as has often been done, making figures here, though frequently mistaken for the sun the Mosaic religion, the moon the literal description, are no other than the Old Jewish government, &c. &c. Powers of the Testament prophets habitually used in pre- heavens : same as the hosts or armies of dicting the overthrow of a kingdom, or a na. heaven,-a poetical imagery often used by the tional revolution. Thus, Isaiah represents prophets. the fall of Babylon, by the darkening of the
—the sign of the Son of man in hearen ;] stars, the constellations, the sun and moon, manifest evidences of his agency, in these the shaking of the heavens, and the removing judgments from heaven. There may be an of the earth out of her place, (xiii.;) and, allusion, here, to the taunting request the again, the destruction of Idumea, by the dis- Jews had sometimes made, that he would solving of the host of heaven, the rolling of show them "a sign from heaven," (Matt
. the heavens together as a scroll, and by the xvi. 1; xii. 38;) such a sign they might at falling of the stars like figs from a fig-tree, length discover, in the terrible retribution (xxxiv.;) Ezekiel, the fall of Egypt, by coming on them. —shall all the tribes of the covering the heavens, and darkening the stars, land, ] land, gë,-a term often applied 10 sun and moon, (xxxii.;) Joel, the devastation Palestine, or to a particular region; seldom to of lucusts, by the shaking of the earth and the earth at large. These “ tribes" were, of heaven, and the darkening of the sun, moon course, the Jews. —mourn ;] beat their and stars; and the destruction of Jerusalem, breasts in anguish : such is the force of the by the turning of the sun into darkness, and original. —the Son of man coming . the moon into blood, (ii.) (See, also, Ps. with power and great glory.] His power and xviii.; Dan. viii. 10, &c.) Èven the Latin glory were seen in the niter destruction of the poets, though their usual style is by no means Jewish state and religion, on the one hand, so hyperbolical as that of the Asiatics, run and on the other, in the rapid diffasion of his
** similar figures when describing great truth, aste: the overthrow of his enemies; see Calamities. (See Ovid. Met. xv. 782; Virgil. next ver. “Coming in the clonds of heaven," Georg. i. 462.)
is poetic imagery, often employed by the proImmediately after the tribulation.] and be phets, in describing signal manifestations of fore the end of the generation in which Christ divine providence; (see Deut. xxxiii. 26; spoke; (see ver. 31.) Accordingly, it is Ps. xviii. 9–13; Isa. xix. 1; Dan. vii. 13; well known that the destruction of the Jewish Rev. i. 7.) state, and the dispersion of the people, “ led -he shall send his angels,] alluding indirectcaptive into all nations,” (A. D. 70,) follow- ly, perhaps, to the ministry of his preachers, ed immediately the tribulation just described, and in the life-time of some of the disciples. the word rendered angels, which sometimes means simply
* The indirect allusion is favoured by the ambiguity of of race, and the most awful revolution in all Gel's religious
Matt. xxiv. 32 Now learn a parable of the fig-tree; till all these things be fulfilled. 35 Heaven When his branch is yet tender, and put- and earth shall pass away, but my words teth forth leaves, ye know that summer shall not pass away. is nigh: 33 So likewise ye, when ye 36 But of that day and hour knoweth shall see all these things, know that it is no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but near, even at the doors. 34 Verily I say my Father only. 37 But as the days of unto you, This generation shall not pass, Noe were, so shall also the coming of the
Son of man be. 38 For as in the days Mark xii. 32 * Now learn a parable of the fig-tree:
Mark xiii. When her branch is yet tender, and putteth all these things be done. 31 Heaven and earth 35
forth leaves, ye k: ow that summer is near : shall pass away: but my words shall not pass 33 So ye in like manner, when ye shall see
these things come to pass, know that it is 32 But of that day and that hour knoweth 36 34 nigh, even at the doors. $0 Verily, I say unto you, That ihis generation shall not pass, till
all be fulfilled. 33 Heaven and earth shall 35 Luke xxi.
pass away: but my words shall not pass 32 And he spake to them a parable ; Behold away.
the fig-tree, and all the treus ; 30 When they [Parallel with ver. 37-41, of Matt. is Luke now shoot forth, ye see and know of your xvii. 26–30, 34, 35. 26 And as it was in the 37
ownselves that summer is now nigh at hand. days of Noe, so shall it be also in the days of 33 So likewise ye, when ye see these things the Son of man. 27 They did eat, they drank,
come lo pass, know ye that the kingdom of they married wives, they were given in mar34 God is nigh at hand. 32 Verily, I say unto you, This generation shall not pass away, till
Ver. 34. Accordingly, Jerusalem was taken,
A. D. 70, on the 8th of September, about which should then spread abroad so widely; thirty-seven years after the delivery of this though we must not forget that the highly prophecy, while St. John, and probably the poetic imagery of heavenly powers is still greater part of the other apostles, were still continned, as is evident from the rest of the alive, as well as multitudes of the first conexpressions in this verse. The general fact verts and contemporary Jews. With the fall referred to, in the verse, is manifestly this: of the city, the conflict ceased, that had raged that there should be a great and public in- so long and so terribly; but its scattered emgathering of converts, in all nations over the bess continued to burn in Judea for about a face of ihe earth, from the time when the year and a half afterwards, when they went Jewish nation should be destroyed. It would out in the total extinction or dispersion of the be a time of relief, of redemption,” to the rejected race. Christians, as Luke expresses it
, so that they Ver. 35. A form of vehement assertion; should look up, and lift up their heads.' the meaning of which according to the most —with a trumpet of great sound;] imagery approved interpreters, is, “ Heaven and earth taken from the custom of the Jews to call the shall sooner pass away, than my word.” See people together, or to proclaim their jubilee, Matt. v. 18, for a similar form. See Rosen&c. by the sound of trumpet; (Lev. xxv. 9; müller, Kuinoel, &c. Num. x. 2; Judg. iii. 27, vi. 34.) -- from the Ver. 36. —of that day and hour;] i. e. the four winds the other ;] i. e. from precise time. The phrase ought to be taken every quarter thronghout the world.
thus, as a whole, instead of separating the Ver. 32, 33. To illustrate, more familiarly, two terms, day and hour, as some have done. how promptly “the end ” would follow the -knoweth no one ;] (see Mark.) Christ did signs he had specified, and with what cero indeed know that it would be before the end tainty the disciples might trace its approach, of that generation, (see ver. 34,) but still the Christ now frames a parable from the fig. precise time was unknown. tree, which abounded on the mount of Olives,
Ver. 37–39. It would be, however, like the where they were sitting. —know that it is near, &c.;) viz. the coming of the Son of then its first beginning. This was the true establishment man, or, as Luke says, “ the kingdom of of Christianity; not that effected by the donations or conver
Till the Jewish law was abolished, God;" which, though already begun, was
over which the Futher presided as King, the reign of the not to come with power, till the overthrow of Son could not like place; because the s vereignty of Christ the Jewish polity; (see Mait. xvi. 27, 28; Jews, transferred and more largely eatenol. This thereMark viii. 38, ix. 1; Luke ix. 26, 27, &c.*) fore, being one of the must important prius in the economy
dispensations, we see the elegance and propriety of the messengers; so it is indeed translated in Mark i. 2: Luke terms in qurstion to denotes great an event, incether with TIL 21,27, ix. 32; James i. 25; and so it is vften used in the the destruction of Jerusalem by which it was eff curd. For, Sepangint.
in the old prophetic language, the chan'e and full of princi: * Dr. Warburton says " this prophecy doth not respect palities and powers, whether spiritual or civil, are si unified Christ's second coming to judgment, but his first, in the abo- by the shaking heaven and earth, the darkening the sun ling of the Jewish policy, and the retablishinent of the and moon, and the falling of the stars; as the rise and es. Christian: that kingdom of Christ which commenced on tablishment of new oues are by procession in the clouds of the local chasing of the the xracy. For, as God's reign over heaven, by the sound of trumpet, and th- assembling 10 the Jo*s entirely ended with the abolition of the temple gether or hosts and congregations.” Div, Leg, vol. ii. b. iv. kervice, so the reign of Christ, in spirit and in truth, had | Sect quoted by Bp. Newton.
sions of Constantine