1/5 Matthew 24:34

34 "Truly, I say to you, this generation will not pass away until all these things take place."

This verse has troubled people who believe in the inspiration of Scripture. It has caused some to believe in a view that declares end-time prophecy was fulfilled during the conquest of Jerusalem in AD 70. Other people have decided Jesus was just wrong. I believe if we look carefully at the question and this partial answer from Jesus, we will see the inspiration of Scripture is amazing.

First, we must understand that the disciples asked two questions. When will these things happen, and what will be the sign of your coming (Matthew 24:3)? Jesus had just spoken of the destruction of the temple. The answer to when that would be was before that generation passed away. Forty years after Jesus gave the prediction of those magnificent stones being overturned, it came to pass.

But Jesus also spoke of "all these things" that included His return. The Greek word for "generation" means "a period of time, or a generation of people, or a nation." A few verses later Jesus tells the disciples that only the Father knows when He will return (Matthew 24:36). So in regards to the second part of the question, the time of Jesus' return, the generation could mean the period of time Jesus referred to as "the times of the Gentiles" (Luke 21:24). Some theologians call it "the church age." "Generation" could also mean "the nation of the Jews." While they were in exile for a long period of time, the nation was restored and presently exists. One word answered both questions. The destruction of the temple would come before that generation of people passed away and Jesus' return would come before the church age ended or the Jews' hope of a nation ended. How amazing is God's Word that it can speak on so many levels! While some look for errors, believers continue to find wonders in every word.

Consider: In the next verse Jesus declares that His words would never pass away. Are you seeking out the rich treasures in God's Word?