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THE GENERATION THAT GETS IT
WHEN Christ spoke of the fact that "this generation shall by no means pass till all these things take place", what did He mean (Matthew 24:34) ?
It sometimes helps in seeking to understand someone's sentence, to find out what he is saying. Thus, if you say, Keep one for me! it may mean a bomb, a piece of cake, a chance to help in a bank robbery so that one of the venues will be allocated to you, or an opportunity to help a sick child, if you are a doctor, and you want to take part in a relief program. It all depends. However, you need to be no genius in order to understand the context, if you realise that you did not start to exist at the moment these words were spoken, but were in a situation where they had meaning from the purposes, the preceding and succeeding words, and in short, from what you are about.
What was Christ about in speaking these words concerning 'this generation' ? He was about answering a question.
What was the question ? It was as seen in Matthew 24:3, this: " ... what will be the sign of Your coming, and of the end of the age ?"
We therefore know that the question concerns what criteria, what observable features, what concatenations, procedures or both, are to give evidence for the open-eyed, of His coming. What will show it, how know it: this is the point. THIS, then, His coming is the point in view, and the end of the Age has a relevance in that these are taken to be related intimately, nor does He differ from them in this.
Further, it sometimes helps to know the environment, not only of terms, but of the meeting.
In this case, we read that the disciples were showing Christ the buildings of the Temple. This presumably, since He had at age 12, for example been in it, was not to make a tourist see, but to impress a feature. It would seem, in view of Christ's response to this showing of the temple grandeur, as seen in Matthew 24:2, that by the severity of His utterance, and its totality - to the effect that stone would be cast down from stone, in utter destruction - that judgment would form a major change to any attitude of mere admiration for this grand ecclesiastical structure. In fact, His own statement of what it would meet, that it formed a contrast with the presentation of the disciples, at once abysmal and abrupt.
Vast and apparently mighty as the Temple was in its vast and massive constructions, perhaps suggestive of endurance and power, importance both for it and conceivably its 'ministers', the priests, yet it would to be demolished with a totality which would be memorable. Glory would become tragedy, and grandeur misery. Such was the read-out for its coming of age!
This being so, the disciples look away from the Temple as a criterion of power or authority or finality or endurance, as doubtless Christ had intended by such well-chosen words of finality, to HIM: when would He come in power and when would the Age end! This became their pre-occupation, being duly turned from mere admiration of magnificence of architecture and symbol.
When then would HE, the healer, the speaker, the raiser of the dead, the preacher of the Sermon on the Mount, the bringer of grace and the guide to understanding, yes the very Messiah and the potentate come to rule the earth as in Isaiah 11 ? When the tedious trifles were over, what about the might of His Majesty ? When, ending the Age, would He COME ? That now became the question.
Yes, repeatedly He had spoken of GOING back to His Father (as in Matthew 16-17, and John 16-17, and and the nature of His coming death and resurrection was covered with a repetitive simplicity which in some sense at least, must have led them to realise that a different dispensation was to come. If they did not understand all, they would surely have realised some things.
What then would be the signals, the criteria, the events, the developments, the witness to show that this final stage where, the power of the Temple long disassembled, a thing of the past, they would come to find the kingdom in power, and He would come to exhibit it ?
In answer to this question Christ said many things, though it must be stressed that they are elegant in simplicity and brevity compared with many government presentations! Thinking schematically, we find that His words covered a certain pageant of events.
There would be MANY prophets and false christs, all bogus, but this is not the end. Politically, there would be a vast terrain of successive wars; but in themselves, this is not the end. In all this upheaval, there would be a magnificent spectacle of the blood lust of faithless man, killing Christians galore, so that many would find this untempting as a life, whatever its truth, and be 'offended', that is stumble and exit.
The GOSPEL would in all these dynamically developing vicissitudes among the nations, be preached extensively throughout the world, and when its pervasiveness as a witness was complete, the end would come - as it will.
That is very clear: a long period of upheavals mounting to climax would come, so that not the Temple but the Christ only could help. The formalistic aspect which was what many made of the realities which the Temple was to show, would give place to the test aspect and in the end, to the return of Christ impact itself (24:30).
In particular, there would be an abominable affront to Christ and the entire scope of biblical revelation, in this, that in a Temple of new construction, a bogus leader would appear seeking divine honours (as the Danielic picture shows, to which Christ specifically referred in His speech), and then there would be a series of events so catastrophic that the world would have had no prior equal. Thus, in this period of finality as the Age reached its terminus, there would be a formidable display of force, horror and devastation, unique in history (Matthew 24:21). It would mean that anyone with open-eyes would seek to be far from such a grotesque paranoia, blasting the divine name with its gases.
SO GREAT WOULD THE CALAMITOUS series of consecutive events become, that unless Christ were to intervene, human life would be snuffed on this earth (24:22). That is the part of the answer to the question of the disciples that is to be perceived.
WHEN IS HE TO COME ? they ask. Thus He gives criteria and then adds, that IF HE DID NOT COME AGAIN, the world would be an end for man. It would not be a case, for Him, of mere return, as if to take His place in events; it would be a return which was an necessary FOUNDATION for the world to continue to support human life at all! Without Him, the Prince of Life (Acts 3), death would be the final tonic, truth an absentee and mercy lost.
Arising from this is a warning: People being devious and deceived at this time, as in the Danielic parallel invoked (24:15), there would be a flurry of deceptive enterprise on the part of false 'believers'. People would be wanting to convince you that He came, or would come, or was coming here or there (24:26); but they would all be wrong. No such aids would be needed, as in the JW or the Seventh Day Adventists provisions of wrong dates, or commencement with them. As to this time, no dates or throes of intellect would reveal it, and the time and seasons were not for inspection (Acts 1).
No, His advent would ANNOUNCE ITSELF, indelibly, securely, with a spectacle not to be desired by those who sought not the Christ, but the world. As to that, it would wobble (cf. Hebrews 12, Isaiah 24, Haggai 2:6), and its woes would mount; but it would have NO SOLUTION. No masses, for example, would make Him be found in some room, implying that He was come, that He was there in body; and no such imposture would be relevant (cf. SMR pp. 1032-1088H). This, it is all merely part of the horror of the times. MANY such things would be tried on; but they do not fit.
Be careful to avoid such things! Christ indicated (24:26ff., cf. SMR pp.1086ff.).
When this total complex of events, and this total development of situation had come (cf. Luke 21), then the time of His coming, of the end of the Age, would be near. Indeed, at His moment of His own choice, in the Father, He would then come indeed. It would be (as it will be) with a brilliance that none could disguise, with a power that none could thwart, with an authority that left no room for foul play as before; and He would simply remove from the surface of this earth the entire flock of those who are His, that is, His 'elect' or chosen ones. He would abstract them as one abstracts crystals, by filtration, or hand selection, from a solution.
The 'solution', the world in its terminal writhings at that time: It would remain, but the crystals, the believers, would be SELECTED and SENT AWAY from the scene, like some dramatic rescue of captives from the hands of their tormentors. This however would be neither subtle nor secret, but on a scale which would be commensurate with the power of God (Matthew 24:29ff.), resembling the alighting of lightning, and its luminous flash.
Christ then spent time making it clear that this was a sequential matter, like summer fruiting, and that "this generation" would not pass away till all those things has taken place. Indeed, since the time was long with provision for many kingdom variations and conflicts, He went so far as to intimate that heaven and earth - things commenced - would end; but that His words, the words which His Father commanded (John 12:48-50), they WOULD ENDURE. Time did not matter; its temporal means of assessment, heavens and earth, would themselves GO; but the timeless God would have His way. This generation would not pass, while His words continuing their power and effectiveness, would show themselves true to this very people. Indeed, even when the world was sent to oblivion, still then (as in Isaiah 51:6, Matthew 24:35), His words would remain. When God is concerned, HE always remains!
It would appear clear, therefore, that it
is of the Jewish people, His people, this 'breed' or race or which He here
spoke*1. Now having said that, we must add something at once. It is addressed to the current
and contemporary exhibit of the breed to which He addressed Himself, the
generation of that moment; but just as
the scope of His remarks of these judgmental declarations extended back in time to righteous
Zechariah (Matthew 23:35), hundreds
of years before, and back in scope to the entire history of the world (Matthew
24:24:21). so they went on to the undisclosed time of His return, all
coming to pass before the very eyes of those who were Jews.
It was of this breed, necessary as it were as witnesses, that He spoke; it was of those to whom the promises came, and the fathers, the word of God, their back history and all the dealings of God; just as it was of an age to be notorious for a flurry of unbelief, and of a nation within that, to be slow to realise (Matthew 13:14ff.), before at last they should return to their land and to their understanding (cf. Luke 21:24, Romans 11, the former implying and the latter stating this, as Isaiah is cited with the Jewish race in cardinal view cf. SMR Appendix A, The Biblical Workman Ch. 1, It Bubbles ... Ch. 10).
Thus the generation that murdered the Lord would get the results of murder; and the breed which watched, where unrepentant and still in their own flesh, would get the witness they sought, right up to the end of the world, whenever that would come; and it would come, and they would live and continue to see it, right through the immediately impending, yes and the extensively portrayed events. Kill Him ? yes but they would live, this race of the Jews, now busied in murdering Him, divinely planned though it was, and continue to SEE it. They might not believe, but history as it were, would do it for them, and into its very navel would they find their people, inexcusable, unvacatable, till all had been done.
That is the sense of this utterance, if we are to take all the facets of its context, its atmosphere, its implied context, its historical surveys and the vast extent of its purvey and scope. It would not be until many and varied vicissitudes had had their day, until the Gospel had spread ALL over the world and vast expanses of deception had reached a climax in some 'temple' to be after the old one was destroyed, that the impudence of man would reach a climax that covered not only Jew but Gentile, and they would be there to see it.
The Jew would continue. The people would not cease. Many might try to rub them out (as Jeremiah 30:7 with Micah 7 imply, for example, and Deuteronomy 32*2), but rubbed out they would not be. The desecrators would see it; the immediate generation would face devastation in just a little while, but the ongoing generation would not be spared the sight of all their unbelief shattered by events, a mere obstinacy of heart and spirit; just as the Gentiles, no better to the slightest degree, would degenerate with them.
Not the nation, but the church would be saved, but many IN the nation would be with them, the apostles being a starting point in the post-crucifixion Age of Christ, resurrected and to return. In the scope, then, of the present, when Jesus Christ was speaking, to the END, when all the world would have been given the Gospel in highly categorical terms as a witness, the generation or race of the Jews would not be eliminated, though its temple would be; and its ways would not cease, though devastations would be of the utmost and the most spectacular degree. His nation would not cease, that breed would not die, that Abrahamic generation would not be disallowed; but would be present to and AT the end.
The reference to the fig-tree in Matthew 24:32ff., in such a context as this, and in such a significant percentage of words in the whole concise account, must be considered. The FIG of course is a symbol of Israel, of the Jews (cf. Jeremiah 24), and its special mention with "all the trees" is a focus. We are looking then, at what Luke 21:24 implies, that though there would be an enormous devastation for Jerusalem, and in the context of Deuteronomy 32 and Leviticus 26, it must mean a dispersion of the Jewish people, yet this sad condition would be ended. They would return. They would be BACK AT THE END; in fact, as in the Luke passage, THIS FACT would be one of the criteria that it WAS.
Was what ?
Do you remember what was said about the question and the circumstances of the utterances ? The question is the end of the Age, its signals and the coming, Christ's return. Jews would be in Jerusalem at the end!
They would not be there otherwise in this Age, following their initial removal (Luke 19:42ff.), since the NEARNESS of His return in Luke is made to REQUIRE as a signal, that Jerusalem was NO LONGER under the control of non-Jews, that is, Gentiles. It would be, that city, UNDER Gentile heels TILL THEN (21:24). That is explicit. Hence WHEN this came, that was a signal incapable of travesty, suppression or equivocation. It had to be faced.
This of course, this return, has happened ONCE since its destruction, in some 1900 years. It was ot occur in 1948,1967 and on.
This indispensable reality is part of the END of the Age, and the ANSWER to their question about the end. The fig tree, as implied in Luke and shown in Matthew, is the Israel to be restored as in Micah 7, Ezekiel 36-39, would be restored. It would be there with the rest of them, the other nations; it would 'bud' again, to use Jesus' terminology for it!
The interplay and murderous assaults, these things would neither obliterate the Jew nor leave no room for a Jerusalem rebuilt (as implied necessarily, since its devastation was foretold - Luke 19:42ff., and Jewish restoration in it no less). NOTHING could exclude its restoration to Israel; and as the Satan is no slouch when it comes to energy, nearly everything imaginable has been cast into history here, to prevent it, to condition it, to force it out, to smash Israel, to grab back Jerusalem and so on. It is par for the course.
Thus in the context of the end of the Age in a vast panorama of history reaching to the presentation of the Gospel as a chief feature, to ALL nations, amid grand national arisings and changes, there would be no change in one thing: the JEWISH PEOPLE would not cease, and the devastated generation would not be the last, no, nor would the city, about to be destroyed, fail to be restored for its own part, and to the Jew, for their part. That kind, that kindred, those whose witness was then, would continue much later, they would be there.
The day of "Jacob's sorrow' would come (Jeremiah 30, cf. The Biblical Workman Ch. 1); but still the Jew would not go. The land, the city and the people would continue, and the people would find desolation, but later restoration. That after all, that restoration has been told from Deuteronomy 32 on, from the day of Micah 7 to this; and when it should come, many would be the Gentiles who would rejoice (Deut. 32, Romans 15:11).
It was then, with the return of this city to Israel as an act of divine faithfulness*4 and then only, that the totality of the other features of the end of the Age would allow anyone with open eyes, willing to be instructed, spiritually awake, to realise that the end of the Age was upon this world. If this is the question, and it was, then this was the answer, and it was.
How apposite it is to refer to the JEW AND YOU! How often we refer to the Jewish element, but still, not seldom to the Gentile. It is because such is the scriptural emphasis.
What however is the component in all of this to
WATCHING YOUR WAY, and WALKING IN THE SPIRIT ?
It is just that the end time is now NEAR, to use Christ's term in Luke 21:28. For the Christian, THAT is not a threat but a promise; although, to be sure, a promise can be a threatening one, this is not so for those whose God is the Lord, and whose Lord is God. As in the days of Elijah, that vast prophetic outpouring before judgment would at last fall on Israel, and those of Elisha to follow, so now, the Lord's presence is so near, while 'prosperity Christianity' (a phrase parallel to capitalistic Marxism, or Marxistic integrity cf. SMR pp. 925ff., and Aviary of Idolatry), so now, even the blind must feel a certain impact in the obscured spiritual retina!
In the day of those prophets, even a far from godly king could be bemused by the amazing works of God wrought by them (cf. II Kings 8:4-5), and it was not for nothing that his interest came, nor was their any lack of admonition for him in all of this. In our day, that other breed, that different brood, the Gentiles, no less than the Jew, need to consider their way. The toboggan being used instead of truth, that vast, secular, insincere, sinecured and sinful, that humanistic, relativistic, racially self-centred apotheosis of humanity as the core and criterion continues like a mosquito playing with the palm of one's hand. It does not consider the consequence of a little clap, as it ignores its genesis, its destiny and its limits.
Mosquitoes have here a lesson. Seldom is one to find an unastute example of its class, unless it be befuddled by a prior clout. The wiles of the mosquito are proverbial, almost ingenious; its escape technology is an undoubted masterpiece. It is not only alive, but lively, nor merely lively, but acute, astute, abounding with escapades of escape, daring diversities and delightful comedies of contrivance. What a creation as one of the testimonies of the curse (as was the case in Egypt of old, when the curses were especially stylised for religious rebuttal purposes and were so amply ironical (cf. Plagues of Egypt)!
THEY have some sense of their position, daring as they are. They do not flaunt their wares where 'unhand me sir' is not available as a device of diplomacy. Where the hand is, they study not to be!
Our generation could learn from that. Where the hand of truth is, it seems determined to be blind; and then, in catastrophe after catastrophe, not mulling the mistakes made, but maximising the provocation contributed to the Maker of man, it proceeds as if unintelligence were its trade. It vaunts, it flaunts its power and its peace programs, while war grinds its messy maledictions on millions. It favours us with its insights, while experiments fail to contribute to the follies of scientism*6, the latest exhibition of that knowledge falsely so-called, of which Paul spoke in I Timothy 6 (cf. Victory, Heritage of Christians, Exile from this World 8, esp. *4, with Cascade of Truth, Torrent of Mercy Ch. 3).
Then, when not searching in Mars for what is lacking on much of this earth, wisdom and life eternal, it proclaims how hard life is, and if it does not curse the God of its correction, directly, it does so by indirection, hating the judgments it finds by its calamitous disregard of truth, as if reality were on a string, and the wiring man makes and the whining in which he so often indulges, were some sort of substitute for facing facts and being led by logic to truth, and by the power of God to receiving it, repenting into the arms of a reality which is both personal and merciful. CHRIST did not avoid the hand that swatted, because He undertook to be there to take it for those who deserve it.
If man is to be compared, in this little parable, to mosquitoes, then instead of exalting in his follies, he might do well to examine the hand and the mind of God; for after all, it only seems like a swatting, which is the grinding of a history which man remorselessly ensures is to come, by constant, clownish, inveterate, undiscriminating, irrational, rebellious renegacy from the mercy and the love of God, rushing from His pardon as if it were an express train, and he on the track of its path; when in fact, it is the hand which was crushed for him, which would remove him before it is too late.
He laughs; but alas, though grim the laughter, he who laughs last ...
Reality is not available for subversion, not no even by the diplomats of this world, often steadfastly selling Christ for convenience, for security, or for some other aspect of the betrayals which make of man a sort of self-gratifiction cash register, his contrivances to contain God, who, in turn, can be mashed like potatoes into any shape they desire. When they find this is not so, this becomes only one more ground for their detestation of the divine, though in those words, it is not perhaps now so often put: yet the pith is still as present as before.
It is like a mad mosquito, rewired to seek its own destruction with all the wit which once served to help it to escape!
Psalm 2 has a word for us here:
"Why do the nations rage,
And the people plot a vain thing?
The kings of the earth set themselves,
And the rulers take counsel together,
Against the Lord and against His Anointed, saying,
'Let us break Their bonds in pieces
away Their cords from us.'
That was the case when they
decided to murder the Christ: it is so cited in Acts 4.
"He who sits in the heavens shall laugh;
The Lord shall hold them in derision.
Then He shall speak to them in His wrath,
And distress them in His deep displeasure:
'Yet I have set My King
On My holy hill of Zion.'
I will declare the decree:
"The Lord has said to Me,
‘You are My Son,
Today I have begotten You.
That was the case when as planned (Psalm 16, 22), God raised His only begotten
Son from the dead, the 'first-begotten from the dead' in that there was no intervention from
anyone physically present, making it seem like a begetting from the womb of death! (as in Colossians 1:18). It was the power of God who brought back to His body the crucified Lord of glory, who came for just such a purpose (cf. Romans 1:4, Psalm 40 and Joyful Jottings 22-25).
"Ask of Me, and I will give You
The nations for Your inheritance,
And the ends of the earth for Your possession.
You shall break them with a rod of iron;
You shall dash them to pieces like a potter’s vessel.’
That is coming in the approaching return of Christ with His saints (cf. Ch. 2 to follow).
"Now therefore, be wise, O kings;
Be instructed, you judges of the earth.
Serve the Lord with fear,
And rejoice with trembling.
"Kiss the Son, lest He be angry,
And you perish in the way,
When His wrath is kindled but a little.
Blessed are all those who put their trust in Him."
That ? it is NOW, and it has been a NOW for the entire Church Age, the age of the Gospel of grace, preparatory, on its completion as a publication to all the peoples of the earth, to the Lord's coming for and then with His saints. It is then that the earth will be filled with the knowledge of the glory of God as the waters cover the sea (Habakkuk 2:14). The point now is this, that the end of this Age is near, as when a boiling radiator suggests that it is time to STOP AND LOOK.
Watch you way, walk in the Spirit!
The Greek term 'genea' is most interesting. It can be used of a brood, a generation, a nation, but the basis of it all is the sense of what is begotten, what spreads itself out as the attestation of that fact.
Thus in Mark 7:26, we read of a lady that she was a Greek, a Syro-Phoenician by nation. That is where she belonged racially. The term can mean nation, generation, or even time, in translation.
The question is whether it means here the CURRENT generation, or the JEWISH generation, conceived as one, as in the above case. In view of the concepts which Jesus revealed, concerning the Jewish people, His laments, His warnings, His challenges, the depth and scope of His presentation of their history, the context for the AGE and indeed its end, it seems far the best to translate here as you will, so long as you somehow make it clear that the contextual reference plane is the object of His repeated concern in 'genea' terms, namely the Jewish people. It is this 'brood' to which He gives racial recognition; and the plane of reference is to the end, inclusive of all leading to it. When the focus is the current generation as in Matthew 23, and what is coming to it for its specialised evils, then that is the meaning; when it is the end of the Age and what is to SHOW IT, then this is the scope.
Nevertheless, this is by no means becomes exclusivistic, as often a context may have a focal point but a hinterland of application, depending on the purpose of the discourse. Here the children of Abraham will not cease till He come, and they will meet Him, as one vast racial generation, one nation, one people, in one sense or another, when He comes. They will 'bud' and Jerusalem will be back. It will all be there. The final assizes and events will not find this race missing, Jewish by nation, to use the parallel to Mark 7, noted above.
NONE will escape, NONE will be beyond it, past it or unassessable. Time will provide no hiding place from judgment, nor any screen from blessing; nor will antiquity make of them a relic. THIS is a people God does NOT forget, whether for the bond of the covenant or the blessing of Abraham, in the 'seed' promised, Jesus Christ, for their cornucopia of consummation in Him.
As in Romans 11:25-28, there is an undismissable and indispensable plane or plateau of comprehension, never missing, and this breed, the Jew, and that, the Gentile have their places, the former vital to the depth of the whole, and to be conceived as one (Romans 11:30-33). Nation will indeed fight against nation (Matthew 24:7), but the fig tree (Luke 21:29) is distinguishable as always, from 'all the trees', just as in Luke 21:24, Jerusalem in Jewish hands is specifically marked out as an index required before the end of the Age.
Indeed, it is the fig tree which is elaborately used by Christ when one such tree from which He sought fruit, is cursed, and then the next day is found shrivelled. This telling parable made of the fig tree a symbol for the now unproductive nation, whose befouled temple, in the interim between curse and death of the tree, He had purged (Luke 11:12-23). It was not pique but program which led to this amazing botanical event, and as characteristic with Christ's depth and wisdom, so here the tree and the temple are conjoined, the one in the driving out of the money changers in the temple, overturning their tables, and the other in the failure to give fruit (as in the parable of Matthew 21:33ff.), resulting in judgment!
And that judgment in turn, it was, amidst great compassion, announced most fully (Luke 19:42ff.).
If the word of God has those remarkable resonances*3 and elaborate interweavings, like a magnificent tartan or lace work, of which one has earlier spoken, how much more are they to be seen when the very speaker of that word, becoming flesh, personally acts! The elemental fire of reality leaves nothing in the shadow, nothing untouched by its light. Christ, the truth (John 14:6) acts and speaks like it, in victorious triumphal power, neither sand-blasted when the surface is more delicate, nor left uncertain when there is obstruction (as in Luke 11!).
Thus, it is precisely in the context of the fig tree and all the trees 'budding' that the reference is made to this 'genea' not passing away till all is fulfilled, just as the restoration of Jerusalem is proximate before it (Luke 21:24).
THAT is the scope of Christ's exhortations which He was making (Luke 21:37) on these topics, the Greek genitive absolute being used to indicate His teaching process continuing during the day, just as the Mount of Olives was His resting place at night (Luke 21:37). He expounded it, in teaching mode, showing now this, now that, material for reporting, exposition and epexegetical words as He pleased.
The scope of His discourse, then, concerns fall and restoration of Jerusalem, the vast concourse of nations in wars and the jiggling of their hostilities, arising and falling, with ecclesiastical contrivances and follies surging as geological happenings abound, desecratory of complacency, forcing the earth in the context of disorder increasing, morally and materially, to exhibit its own madness in pretending self-sufficiency, as it faces the judgment on its ways. Such is His discourse as recorded in Luke 21, Matthew 24.
As in Romans 11, there is a vast divine plan, superb in administration, amazing, stunning in scope, which weaves and interweaves the past and the present, the symbol and the substance, the past promises and the consummatory conclusion, one which staggers Paul with delight; and it is justly so! What a perfected pageant of history, as in E=MC2 in science, making the outline clear, while the internal workings of the thing, are profound. Here it is not matter, however, but man who is the topic, and truth provided is not mere expression of modes of construction and occurrence, absolutely presented and maintained in their relationships, but definition of destiny. We pass from stage to actors, from testing ground to what is being tested: to mankind in his modes and his phases, relative to the word and procedure which the Lord having instituted, honours and fulfils (cf. Matthew 5:17-20). Nothing is missing, neither jot nor tittle, far less race of unconditional promise, both more limited and more general*5.
Further, there is one further reason for this richness of import. God is NOT about to reveal when He is coming back, just as HE IS revealing the criteria which will relate to it and which must be looked for. He is not allowing a simple computation of the time from the restoration of Jerusalem (the unduplicable component in itself) for one generation in order to FIND OUT, despite His own declared intention NOT to show it, just WHEN He will come. It conceivably could be then, with this available reference point in the richness of the contextual provisions; but it must assuredly does not HAVE to be then, and the main and essential thrust of Matthew 24's 'genea' which shall not fail, till all is fulfilled, as here described, is the people itself, in its generative aspect, from of old to the time of its final provisions.
See The Biblical Workman Ch. 1,
Lord of Life Ch. 8;
Calibrating Myths... Ch. 2,
Galloping Events Chs. 1 and 8 .
See Christ, the Wisdom and the Power of God Ch. 8, *3,
Answers to Questions 9,
Compare Ezekiel 36:22 and see Appendix A, SMR.
See Genesis 12, 15, 17 and refer to Galloping Events Ch. 4.
See Secular Myths and Sacred Truth Chs. 1, 6, 7,
Beauty for Ashes Ch. 3,
SMR pp. 140ff..
Delusive Drift or Divine Dynamic Chs. 3 (shrieking for their idols, but in vain), 7