Into Joy

John 16:16-24 A little while, and you shall not see me: and again, a little while, and you shall see me, because I go to the Father. Then said some of his disciples among themselves, What is this that he said unto us, A little while, and you shall not see me: and again, a little while, and you shall see me: and, Because I go to the Father? They said therefore, What is this that he said, A little while? we cannot tell what he said. Now Jesus knew that they were desirous to ask him, and said unto them, Do you enquire among yourselves of that I said, A little while, and you shall not see me: and again, a little while, and you shall see me? Verily, verily, I say unto you, That you shall weep and lament, but the world shall rejoice: and you shall be sorrowful, but your sorrow shall be turned into joy. A woman when she is in travail has sorrow, because her hour is come: but as soon as she is delivered of the child, she remember no more the anguish, for joy that a man is born into the world. And you now therefore have sorrow: but I will see you again, and your heart shall rejoice, and your joy no man take from you. And in that day you shall ask me nothing. Verily, verily, I say unto you, Whatsoever you shall ask the Father in my name, he will give it you. Hitherto have you asked nothing in my name: ask, and you shall receive, that your joy may be full. 

‘A little while’ He was with them for one more day and then crucified, where He remained dead for 3 whole days. Then they saw Him for 40 more days and no more after that (Matt. 12:40; Acts 1:3, 11). As He said to the Jews (John 7:34; 8:21), He said unto the disciples: when He finally did go they couldn’t follow, but He will come back for them [and us] later (John 13:36; 14:1-3) at the time of the Rapture.

‘Because I go to the Father’ Three times Jesus said that He was not going to be there to continue His works, so He made full provision for believers to do them (John 14:12-17, 26; 15:7; Matt. 3:11; 17:20; Luke 11:13; 24:49; Acts 1:4-8; 38-39); He sends the Holy Spirit to take His place and convince the world of sin, righteousness, and judgment (16:8-11) and He was going to His Father, so the disciples will not be able to see Him until He comes again.

‘A woman when she is in travail has sorrow, because her hour is come: but as soon as she is delivered of the child, she remember no more the anguish, for joy that a man is born into the world.’ This is a literal illustration picturing the sorrow and joy of the disciples in His death and resurrection.

‘In that day’ the day when Jesus went back to the Father they shall ask Him nothing, but they shall ask the Father in Jesus name (John 14:1-3, 12, 19-20; 16:5, 10, 16, 23-27).

‘Whatsoever you shall ask’ again assuring no limitations to what believers may ask and receive within the bounds of the promises.

‘In my name’ this repeats the doctrine of the Christian’s power of attorney and teaches agency in divine affairs. Legally, any person capable of free and intelligent action may act as an agent. A lunatic, imbecile, an infant, or anyone incapable of free and intelligent action cannot act as an agent. The power of attorney means the legal and written authority to transact business for another. One may be a general agent to represent another in all of his business, or a special agent who is authorized to do some specific work, or transact some special business. The agent can act with all authority within the bounds of the legal authorization as much as the one who gave him this authority. All believers have full, legal, redemptive, gospel, blood-bought, promised, and family rights to use the name of Jesus.

Free, unlimited, and unqualified use of His name is the body’s deposit. Checks will be honoured in the amount signed with a steady and unwavering hand (Jas. 1:5-8).

‘Hitherto have you asked nothing in my name’ up until then the disciples have not asked anything in Jesus name for He was with them and they could ask Him personally; but after He left, they had to ask the Father in Jesus name.

‘Ask, and you shall receive’ Do not be afraid to ask – simply ask in faith and you shall receive. Asking is not limited to salvation, but “whatsoever,” “anything,” and “all things” will be given in Jesus name (Matt. 17:20; 21:22; Mark 11:22-24; John 14:12-15; 15:16).

‘That your joy may be full’ the purpose of answering prayer is to help you and to confirm the infinite Fatherhood of God (Matt. 7:11; Luke 11:9-13; Jas. 1:17), so do not hesitate to ask any material, physical, or spiritual blessing – any need for body, soul, or spirit – for no good thing will He withhold from you (Psa. 23:1; 34:9-10; 84:11; 91:1-12; Matt. 21:22; Mark 9:23; 11:22-24; John 14:12-15).

The Time Shall Come

John 16:1-7 These things have I spoken unto you, that you should not be offended. They shall put you out of the synagogues: yea, the time cometh, that whosoever kills you will think that he does God service. And these things will they do unto you, because they have not known the Father, nor me. But these things have I told you, that when the time shall come, you may remember that I told you of them. And these things I said not unto you at the beginning, because I was with you. But now I go my way to him that sent me; and none of you ask me, Whither goes thou? But because I have said these things unto you, sorrow hath filled your heart. Nevertheless I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you. 

‘These things have I spoken unto you …’ The 38th New Testament prophecy in John fulfilled and is being fulfilled. ‘Offended’ the Greek word skandalizo which means to stumble, to cause a person to begin to distrust and desert one whom he ought to trust and obey.

‘Put you out of the synagogues’ that is to excommunicate you (John 9:22; 12:42) that whosoever kills you will think that he does God service.

Because they have not known the Father, nor Jesus: their ignorance of God and Christ is the foundation of all religious persecution and intolerance (John 15:21).

Jesus did not tell the disciples these things when He chose them, lest they should have been discouraged; but it was at this time necessary to tell them so they could be on guard when He left them.

‘Whither goes thou?’ This was asked twice before (John 13:36; 14:5), but now their hearts were too full of sorrow to ask again.

It was expedient for the disciples that Jesus went away: for if He did not go away, the Comforter [Holy Spirit] could not come unto them; but when Jesus departed, He did send Him unto them.

It was ‘expedient’ for them that He should go – the Greek word sumphero meaning profitable. It was necessary for Jesus to die and go away or the Spirit cannot come to save men and anoint them to propagate the gospel.

The Holy Spirit is the third person in the Divine Trinity (1Jn. 5:7; Matt. 28:19; 2Cor. 13:14). He has been sent by both the Father and the Son (John 14:16, 26; 15:26; 16:7; Luke 24:49; Acts 2:33).

The Comforter

John 15:26-27 But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceed from the Father, he shall testify of me: And you also shall bear witness, because you have been with me from the beginning.

The 37th New Testament prophecy in John that is fulfilled in Acts 2:1-4 when they and others (120 Acts 1:15) were baptized with the Holy Spirit and with fire.

‘I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth’ Jesus is the baptizer in the Holy Spirit (Matt. 3:11; John 1:31-33).

‘Proceed from the Father’ the Father will send forth in Jesus name or by His authority (John 14:26).

‘He shall testify of me’ The Holy Spirit bears witness by anointing men: for the Apostles who were to preach the gospel (Luke 4:18; Acts 2:11-39; 1Cor. 1:17-18, 23; 2:1-16). In prophesying by edifying, exhorting and comforting (Acts 3:21; 13:1, 32; 21:10; 1Cor. 12:10, 28; 14:3). In the exercise of other gifts (1Cor. 12:10, 30; 14:5, 13, 27). In making audible intercession with groanings which cannot be uttered in words (Rom. 8:26). He will teach us all the words that Christ spoke, therefore He is called the Spirit of truth, He will guide us into all truth [the Word]. He will not speak of Himself; but whatsoever He shall hear of Christ He will speak and show the Apostles the things to come. He shall glorify Jesus Christ for He shall receive of Him, and show it all unto us (John 16:13-14).

‘You also shall bear witness’ The disciples also were to speak for Jesus (Acts 1:8, 22) so that others may know Him (Isa. 43:10) and believe in Him and may understand that He is the Messiah, the Saviour of the world. They shall witness that He is God (Isa. 43:12).

The Hatred of the World

John 15:18-25 If the world hates you, you know that it hated me before it hated you. If you were of the world, the world would love his own: but because you are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hate you. Remember the word that I said unto you, The servant is not greater than his lord. If they have persecuted me, they will also persecute you; if they have kept my saying, they will keep yours also. But all these things will they do unto you for my name’s sake, because they know not him that sent me. If I had not come and spoken unto them, they had not had sin: but now they have no cloke for their sin. He that hate me hate my Father also. If I had not done among them the works which none other man did, they had not had sin: but now have they both seen and hated both me and my Father. But this cometh to pass, that the word might be fulfilled that is written in their law, They hated me without a cause. 

The 36th New Testament prophecy in John [vv.18-21] is fulfilled.

‘You were of the world, the world would love his own: but because you are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world’ Three times Christ testifies this of His disciples (John 15:19; 17:14-16).

Expect the world’s hatred because: Jesus predicted it; the world hates reproof (John 3:19). Its evils are exposed by true Christian living (Rom. 12:2; Tit. 2:11-12). Its darkness is exposed by Christian light (John 3:18-20; Php. 2:15). It is blind (2Cor. 4:4). Christians are not of it (John 17:14-16). It is at war with Christians (John 16:33; Eph. 6:12; 1Jn. 5:4). It has natural enmity against God (Jas. 4:4; Mat. 18:7). Christians hate its ways (1Jn. 2:15-17). Christians live separated from it (Jas. 1:27; Rom. 12:2; 2Pet. 2:20). It is ignorant of Christian experience (Gal. 2:20; 2Cor. 5:17). It is ignorant of God.

‘For my name’s sake’ on account of Christ or His authority (Acts 4:7, 17-18; 5:40-41; 9:14-16, 21).

‘Sent me’ Jesus claimed that the Father sent Him 43 times in John. Only 4 times is it referred to in the other gospels.

If Jesus had not come and proved to them beyond doubt that He was the Messiah they would not have had the sin of rejecting Him, but now they have no excuse for this sin. They willfully hate both Jesus and His Father (John 15:22-24).

‘They hated me without a cause.’ The 10th Old Testament prophecy fulfilled in John (Psa. 35:19; 69:4; comp. Psa. 109:3; 119:161).

Commandments

John 15:11-17 These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full. This is my commandment, That you love one another, as I have loved you. Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends. You are my friends, if you do whatsoever I command you. Henceforth I call you not servants; for the servant know not what his lord does: but I have called you friends; for all things that I have heard of my Father I have made known unto you. You have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that you should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever you shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you. These things I command you, that you love one another. 

‘That your joy might be full’ Getting complete answers to prayer is associated with this idea in John 16:24. Would not joy be full if one lived in perfect obedience to God as did Christ? Contrast “my joy” (John 15:11; 17:13) with “your joy” (John 15:11; 16:22, 24). The conditions of joy and peace (John 14:27) are both based upon perfect obedience (John 15:9-14).

‘This is my commandment, That you love one another, as I have loved you.’ Christ’s commandment to us is the same as His Father’s commandment to Him. We must love one another to the extent that He loves us. He laid down His life for us; we must lay down our lives for each other.

‘If you do whatsoever I command you’ If we obey we are His friends; but if we do not obey we are not His friends.

‘Henceforth I call you not servants’ He did not make us bondslaves. He made us full partners and His personal representatives on earth. We are to represent Him and reproduce His works as He represented God and did His works (John 14:12; 17:18; 20:21-23). We will share equally with Christ in His inheritance if we share in sufferings and work (Rom. 8:17). We are to share with Him all things the Father has made known to Him.

‘Chosen you, and ordained you’ we were chosen and ordained to go and bring forth fruit, produce eternal works and get an answer to every prayer.

True ministers of the Word must be united [of one mind] to the vine, chosen by God to do the work and ordained for the work: Laborers to bring forth fruit, not idlers (John 6:27). Goers to the work, not waiters for the work (Matt. 28:19-20; Mark 4:35-38; 16:15-20; Acts1:4-8). Preservers of their fruit, not destroyers of it (John 6:27). Prayers that get results. Lovers of all men (1Jn. 3:4-18; 1Cor. 13:1-13).

Abide in Me

John 15:7-10 If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, you shall ask what you will, and it shall be done unto you. Herein is my Father glorified, that you bear much fruit; so shall you be my disciples. As the Father hath loved me, so have I loved you: continue you in my love. If you keep my commandments, you shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father’s commandments, and abide in his love. 

‘If you abide in me, and my words abide in you’ Note the conditions of this chapter (John 15:6, 10, 18-20, 22, 24).

‘Ask what you will’ the promise is “ask what you will,” plainly teaching that answered prayer is up to the child of God as to what he wants. This is in perfect harmony with the promises of both testaments. A true Christian can get what he wants as well as what he needs (Psa. 23:1; 34:9-10; 84:11; Matt. 7:7-11; 17:20; 18:18-20; 21:22; Mark 9:23; 11:22-24; John 14:12-15; 16:23-26; Eph. 3:20; Heb. 11:6; Jas. 1:5-8; 1Jn. 3:21-22; 5:14-15). A prayer saying, “If it be Thy will” concerning anything God has already promised, and therefore has already made it clear that it is His will (providing we ask in faith, nothing wavering), is really a prayer of unbelief. It is like saying, “I know You have already promised and You have made it very clear by Your Word that it is Your will, but do You really mean what You say? We insult God by constantly questioning His will that is already revealed by His word. It is no less insulting to Him than it would be to a human friend who had promised something and we continued to question him about his will in the matter.

Branches must not only remain in Christ but must have His words abiding in them or prayers will not be answered. God can only be glorified by the branches when they remain in Christ and produce much fruit.

‘So have I loved you’ The Father heard Him always, so Christ promised to answer all prayers prayed in His name (John 14:12-15; 16:23-26).

‘Keep my commandments’ is found 359 times in Scriptures and over half of these most certainly command men to keep the commandments of God. This is not only true of the Old Testament, but of the New Testament. Therefore, Christians are under obligation to obey the gospel throughout life, not only during one brief act of faith.

‘Even as I have kept my Father’s commandments, and abide in his love’ Emphasizing to what extent one must render obedience to God by keeping His commandments. If we are to be as righteous as He was in the world (John 17:14-16; 1Jn. 2:29; 3:7-10; 4:17; 5:1-5, 18), then nothing short of complete obedience must be rendered. It is impossible to retain a sense of pardoning grace without continuing in obedient grace.

The True Vine

John 15:1-6  I am the true vine, and my Father is the husbandman. Every branch in me that bear not fruit he take away: and every branch that bear fruit, he purge it, that it may bring forth more fruit. Now you are clean through the word which I have spoken unto you. Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can you, except you abide in me. I am the vine, you are the branches: He that abide in me, and I in him, the same bring forth much fruit: for without me you can do nothing. If a man abide not in me, he is cast forth as a branch, and is withered; and men gather them, and cast them into the fire, and they are burned. 

 ‘True vine’ Israel turned out to be a false vine producing wild grapes (Isa. 5:1-7). Christ as the true vine brings forth good fruit.

‘Every branch in me that bear not fruit he take away: and every branch that bear fruit, he purge it, that it may bring forth more fruit.’ Every believer in Christ is referred to by this illustration or it is meaningless. If the believer is fruitful he is purged to produce more fruit. If he is fruitless he is taken away or removed from being part of the vine. The Father does this, not man. No man is able to pluck one branch from God’s hands, but if we say that God cannot cut off any branch that is fruitless, then we limit God and make the dead, fruitless, and useless branches to be more powerful than He is. To take this position would be like saying to the vinedresser that it would be unlawful to prune the vine and remove the dead branches. No man can cut off any branch that is not actually in the vine. It is absurd and contrary to the letter and spirit of the parable here to talk about branches that are cut off as merely professing to be branches. If the idea here is only professed union of the vine and branches then there could only be a professed cutting off and burning; so the passage would mean nothing because it would have said nothing to any purpose.

God is the husbandman and Christ is the vine and believers are the branches in Christ. Every fruitless branch “in me” is cut off, withered, gathered with other dead branches and cast into the fire and burned. Every fruitful branch “in me” is purged that it might be more fruitful. Every branch “in me” is clean (pure in heart by the Word if walking in the light, Matt. 5:8; Eph. 5:26; John 3:5; Jas. 1:18; 1Pet. 1:23; 1Jn. 1:7). Branches must “abide in” Christ and Christ in them to produce fruit. The branch is helpless to produce fruit of itself. Christ is helpless to produce fruit through the branch unless it remains in Him. Branches must abide in Christ or be cut off and burned.

‘Now you are’ Now – not, “you are going to be.” The cleanliness referred to here was a present experience before the cross and before Pentecost. They were clean because of the Word that was spoken by Christ that washed them (Isa. 1:18).

‘Clean’ the Greek word katharos means pure, clean from anything that soils or corrupts. Real heart purity is meant (Matt. 5:8).

‘Abide’ the Greek word meno meaning remain, continue, dwell, and abide. This is a command to remain in Christ. The reason is given here as not being able to bear fruit otherwise. Without following in His example and footsteps when He lived on earth, one cannot remain in Him (1 Pet. 2:21-23).

Peace

John 14:27 Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world give, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid. 

As the Prince of Peace (Isa. 9:6), Jesus leaves us with His peace that passes all understanding. We must permit this peace to garrison or keep our hearts and minds through Jesus Christ (Php. 4:7). Start with renouncing all worry and then by prayer, supplication, and thanksgiving, make all your requests known to God (Php. 4:6; Jas. 4:7). We must always think on the right things (Php. 4:8) and keep our minds stayed on God (Isa. 26:3). Use the weapons of spiritual warfare (2Cor. 10:4-6) when the enemy attacks your mind and put on the whole armour of God so that you are able to stand against the wiles of the devil (Eph. 6:10-18). Have faith in God (Matt. 6:25-34; 7:7-11; 17:20; 21:22; Mark 11:22-24) and live and walk in the Spirit (Gal. 5:16-26; Rom. 6:14-23; 8:1-13). Do not cast away your confidence in Him (Heb. 3:6, 12-14; 6:11-12; 10:19-23, 35-39) but cast all your cares upon God (1Pet. 5:7).

According to 2 Timothy 1:7 God has not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, love, and of a sound mind. He gave us a Spirit of boldness (Rom. 8:15); a Spirit of power (Luke 24:49; Acts 1:8; 1Cor. 16:10; 1Tim. 4:14); a Spirit of love (1Cor. 13:4); and a Spirit of a sound mind, understanding, and judgment (Gal. 5:22-23). The spirit of fear mentioned here is the Greek word deilia meaning cowardice. When we do fear we lose our power, love and sound mind. That’s why your mind becomes frenzied in fear or with worries. This is one of the first stages of backsliding. What you fear will come over you. You give permission to fear to manifest it in the physical reality. That is the enemy’s greatest power against all men. He brings the thought, we think upon it and make it ours and it will come to pass (Job 3:25).

‘Power’ the Greek word dunamis means a power to reproduce itself, implying the need for constant activity and use for continued reproduction. From this word, we get our English dynamo and dynamics – the branch of mechanics dealing with the principles of motion or active operation. Just as a dynamo needs to be in motion to produce power, so one needs to stir up into flame the gift of God in his life (2Tim. 1:7; 1Tim. 4:14).

Keep His Commandments

John 14:20-26 At that day you shall know that I am in my Father, and you in me, and I in you. He that has my commandments, and keep them, he it is that love me: and he that love me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him. Judas said unto him, not Iscariot, Lord, how is it that thou will manifest thyself unto us, and not unto the world? Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him. He that loves me not keep not my sayings: and the word which you hear is not mine, but the Father’s which sent me. These things have I spoken unto you, being yet present with you. But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you. 

‘At that day you shall know’ the disciples knew after Jesus was resurrected that He was in union with the Father. ‘I am in my Father, and you in me, and I in you.’ This passage refers to being in union with, being consecrated to the same end – one in mind, purpose, and life.

Not only must we have His commandments, but we must also keep them = obey them. We have to follow Christ, not only at the beginning of a Christian experience but daily and throughout life. When we live in obedience to the Word, God will know that we love Him and we shall be loved by the Father. Jesus will also love us and manifest Himself to us. This is a promise to each believer (John 7:37-39; 14:12-15; 15:16).

Judas, one of the apostles, who was the brother of James (Luke 6:16; Acts 1:13) and who was also called Lebbaeus and Thaddaeus (Matt. 10:3; Mark 3:18), asked Jesus how He will manifest Himself to them and not to the world?

Jesus answered that someone who loved Him, will obey His Word and by doing so allow the Father’s love and They will be with you in union as they are made alive to others through your life that must be according to Biblical standards as given in 1 Peter 2:21-23.  Someone who does not obey God’s Word loves Him not and rejects the Word from the Father. The plural pronouns of this verse assert the unity in work and omniscient abiding of both the Father and the Son. This refers to the time when He would leave them and after the glory would be restored to Him (John 17:5). Now He is omnipresent, but in the days of His life on earth, He was localized as all other human beings and limited in knowledge and other powers.

The Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in Jesus’ name, shall teach us all the things written in the Word, and bring them to our remembrance. This is the 34th New Testament prophecy in John fulfilled and being fulfilled. The Holy Spirit is called ‘Comforter’ in John 14:16, 26; 15:26; 16:7, and ‘Advocate’ in 1Jn. 2:1. It means one called to the side of another for help or counsel. The Spirit is our Paraclete or Helper on earth and Christ is the Paraclete or Helper in heaven.

The Parable of the Talents

For the kingdom of heaven is as a man travelling into a far country, who called his own servants, and delivered unto them his goods. And unto one he gave five talents, to another two, and to another one; to every man according to his several ability; and straightway took his journey. Then he that had received the five talents went and traded with the same, and made them other five talents. And likewise he that had received two, he also gained other two. But he that had received one went and digged in the earth, and hid his lord’s money. After a long time the lord of those servants cometh, and reckoneth with them. And so he that had received five talents came and brought other five talents, saying, Lord, thou deliveredst unto me five talents: behold, I have gained beside them five talents more. His lord said unto him, Well done, thou good and faithful servant: thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord. He also that had received two talents came and said, Lord, thou deliveredst unto me two talents: behold, I have gained two other talents beside them. His lord said unto him, Well done, good and faithful servant; thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord. Then he which had received the one talent came and said, Lord, I knew thee that thou art an hard man, reaping where thou hast not sown, and gathering where thou hast not strawed: And I was afraid, and went and hid thy talent in the earth: lo, there thou hast that is thine.  His lord answered and said unto him, Thou wicked and slothful servant, thou knewest that I reap where I sowed not, and gather where I have not strawed: Thou oughtest therefore to have put my money to the exchangers, and then at my coming I should have received mine own with usury. Take therefore the talent from him, and give it unto him which hath ten talents. For unto every one that hath shall be given, and he shall have abundance: but from him that hath not shall be taken away even that which he hath. And cast ye the unprofitable servant into outer darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.  Mat 25:14-30 KJV

The last parable of Matthew 24-25 illustrates another truth concerning the kingdom of Heaven (not the Church) and is connected with the parable of the ten virgins and the literal coming of Christ. After warning people in the kingdom of Heaven at His return to Earth to “watch” for they would not know the hour of His return, Christ gives this parable illustrating diligence in view of the hour of His coming. In other words, He explains the necessity of watching and being ready for the day of His appearing, at which time He is to judge His servants as to their faithfulness during His absence from the Earth.

Just as the man in this story went into a far country and trusted his servants with his goods until he returned, so the Lord taught that He was going to Heaven for a period and then return to test His servants as to their faithfulness while He was away. Just as this man returned and judged his servants as to their faithfulness, so the Lord will come again at an unexpected time to judge His servants. The ones that prove faithful will enter into greater responsibilities, but the ones who fail will be cast into Hell fire. This is the same judgment as the judgment of the nations.

The Judgment of the Nations (Mt. 25:31-46)

The judgment of the nations ends the Age of Grace and begins the Millennium. This description of judgment at the end of this age was the last part of the answer to the third question of the disciples “and of the end of the age?” This description of judgment tells us what Christ will do when He comes to Earth to set up His kingdom. This judgment will end man’s sixth probationary period and will end man’s sinful rule on the Earth. Jesus Christ in person, along with the resurrected saints of all ages, will reign on Earth for a thousand years to put all enemies under His feet and re-establish the universal kingdom of God. When the kingdom of God is fully established Christ will reign forever. This judgment will determine who is worthy of entrance into the kingdom of Heaven and who will be executed and cut off from entrance into the kingdom. Daniel 12:12 will then be fullfilled, “Blessed is he that waiteth, and cometh to the thousand three hundred and five and thirty days”, which is the actual day of the proclamation of the kingdom. During this time the nations will be gathered and judged, the Jews will be regathered and settled in the land of promise, and all necessary preliminary arrangements for the kingdom will be made.

Thus, Jesus answers the three questions asked Him by the disciples concerning the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 A.D., concerning signs of His Second Advent, and concerning what will take place when He comes to the Earth at the end of this age. The prophecy of Mat. 24-25 is the greatest one in the New Testament outside the book of Revelation.

We can sum up the central truths illustrated by the five parables in Matthew 24-25 as follows: the parable of the fig tree illustrates the nearness of Christ’s Second Advent, the parable of the good man of the house illustrates readiness, the parable of the servants illustrates faithfulness, the parable of the ten virgins illustrates watchfulness, and the parable of the talents illustrates diligence in view of the Second Advent of Christ.