Examining Matthew 24, Part 1: The Question

– posted by meleti

As promised in my previous video, we will now discuss what is at times called “Jesus’ prophesy of the last days” which is recorded in Matthew 24, Mark 13, and Luke 21.  Because this prophecy is so central to the teachings of Jehovah’s Witnesses, as it is with all other Adventist religions, I get a lot of questions relating to it, and it was my hope to answer all of them in this one video. However, after analysing the full scope of the topic, I realized that it would not be advisable to try to cover everything in a single video. It would be just too long.  Better to do a short series on the topic.  So in this first video, we’ll lay the foundation for our analysis by attempting to determine what motivated the disciples to formulate the question that led Jesus to provide this prophetic warning.  Understanding the nature of their question is pivotal to grasping the nuances of Jesus’ answer.

As we’ve stated many times before, our goal is to avoid personal interpretations.  Saying, “We don’t know”, is a perfectly acceptable answer, and much better than engaging in wild speculation.  I’m not saying that speculation is wrong, but first stick a big label on it saying, “Here be dragons!” or if you prefer, “Danger, Will Robinson.”

As awakening Christians, we never want our research to end up fulfilling Jesus’ words at Matthew 15:9, “They worship me in vain; their teachings are merely human rules.” (NIV)

The problem for those of us coming from the Organization of Jehovah’s Witnesses is that we are bearing the burden of decades of indoctrination.  We have to shirk that off if we are to have any hope of allowing the holy spirit to lead us to truth.

To this end, a good starting point is the realization that what we are about to read was recorded almost 2,000 years ago by men who spoke a different language than we do.  Even if you speak Greek, the Greek you speak is vastly changed from the koine Greek of Jesus’ day.  A language is always shaped by the culture of its speakers, and the culture of the Bible writers is two millennia in the past.

Let us begin.

The prophetic words found in these three gospel accounts came as a result of a question asked of Jesus by four of his apostles.  First, we’ll read the question, but before trying to answer it, we’ll attempt to discern what prompted it.

I will be using Young’s Literal Translation for this part of the discussion.

Matthew 24:3 – “And when he is sitting on the mount of the Olives, the disciples came near to him by himself, saying, 'Tell us, when shall these be? and what is the sign of thy presence, and of the full end of the age?'”

Mark 13:3, 4 –  “And as he is sitting at the mount of the Olives, over-against the temple, Peter, and James, and John, and Andrew, were questioning him by himself, Tell us when these things shall be? and what is the sign when all these may be about to be fulfilled?'”

Luke 21:7 – “And they questioned him, saying, 'Teacher, when, then, shall these things be? and what is the sign when these things may be about to happen?'”

Of the three, only Mark gives us the names of the disciples asking the question.  The rest were not in attendance.  Matthew, Mark and Luke heard about it second hand.

What is worthy of note is that Matthew breaks the question into three parts, while the other two do not. What Matthew includes but which is missing from Mark and Luke’s account is the question: “What is the sign of thy presence?”

So, we might ask ourselves why this element is omitted by Mark and Luke?  Another question arises when we compare the way Young’s Literal Translation renders this passage with that from almost every other Bible version. Most replace the word “presence” with the word “coming” or, sometimes, “advent”. Is that significant?

Before we get into that, let’s start by asking ourselves, what prompted them to ask this question?  We’ll try to put ourselves in their shoes.  How did they view themselves?

Well, they were all Jews.  Now the Jews were different from all other peoples.  Back then, everyone was an idol worshipper and they all worshipped a pantheon of Gods.  The Romans worshipped Jupiter and Apollo and Neptune and Mars. In Ephesus, they worshipped a multi-breasted God named Artemis.  The ancient Corinthians believed that their city was founded by a descendent of the Greek god, Zeus. All of these gods are now gone. They’ve faded into the mists of mythology.  They were false gods.

How do you worship a false god?  Worship means submission.  You submit to your god.  Submission means you do what your god tells you to do.  But if your god is an idol, it cannot speak.  So how does it communicate?  You cannot obey a command you never hear, can you?

There are two ways to worship a false God, a mythological god like Jupiter of the Romans.  Either you do what you think he wants you to do, or you do what his priest tells you is his will.  Whether you imagine it or some priest tells you to do it, you are really worshipping men. Worship means submission means obedience.

Now the Jews were also worshipping men. We just read Jesus’ words from Matthew 15:9. However, their religion was different from all others. It was the true religion. Their nation was founded by God and given God’s law.  They didn’t worship idols.  They didn’t have a pantheon of Gods.  And their God, YHWH, Yehowah, Jehovah, whatever you wish,   continues to be worshipped to this very day.

Do you see where we’re going with this?  If you’re a Jew back then, the only place to worship the true God is within Judaism, and the place where the presence of God exists on earth is in the Holy of Holies, the inner sanctuary within the Temple in Jerusalem.  Take all that away and you take away God from the earth. How could you worship God anymore?  Where could you worship God?  If the temple is gone, where can you offer your sacrifices for forgiveness of sins?  The entire scenario would be unthinkable to a Jew of that era.

Yet that is what Jesus had been preaching.  In the three chapters in Matthew preceding their question we read of Jesus’ final four days in the temple, condemning the leaders for hypocrisy, and prophesying that the city and the temple would be destroyed. In fact, it appears the last words he said just before leaving the temple for the final time were these: (This is from the Berean Literal Bible)

(Matthew 23:29-36) “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you build the tombs of the prophets and adorn the monuments of the righteous; and you say, ‘If we had been in the days of our fathers, we would not have been partakers with them in the blood of the prophets.’ Thus you bear witness to yourselves that you are sons of those having murdered the prophets. You, then, fill up the measure of your fathers. Serpents! Offspring of vipers! How shall you escape from the sentence of Gehenna?”

“Because of this, behold, I send to you prophets and wise men and scribes. Some of them you will kill and will crucify, and some of them you will flog in your synagogues, and will persecute from town to town; so that upon you shall come all the righteous blood being poured out upon the earth, from the blood of the righteous Abel to the blood of Zechariah son of Berekiah, whom you murdered between the temple and the altar. Truly I say to you, all these things will come upon this generation.”

Can you see the situation as they would have seen it? You’re a Jew who believes the only place to worship God is in Jerusalem at the temple and now the son of God, the one you recognize as the Messiah, is saying that the people hearing his words will see the end of all things.  Imagine how that would make you feel.

Now, when we are faced with a reality that we, as humans, are unwilling or unable to contemplate, we go into a state of denial. What is important to you? Your religion? Your country? Your family? Imagine that someone you have trusted as beyond reliable were to tell you that the most important thing in your life is going to come to an end and you’ll be around to see it.  How would you handle it? Would you be able to handle it?

It seems the disciples were having a hard time with this because as they started to depart from the temple, they went out of their way to recommend it to Jesus.

Matthew 24:1 CEV – “After Jesus left the temple, his disciples came over and said, ‘Look at all these buildings!’”

Mark 13:1 ESV – And as he came out of the temple, one of his disciples said to him, “Look, Teacher, what wonderful stones and what wonderful buildings!””

Luke 21:5 NIV – “Some of his disciples were remarking about how the temple was adorned with beautiful stones and with gifts dedicated to God.”

“Look Lord. Look at these beautiful buildings and these precious stones.” The subtext is fairly shouting, “Surely these things will not pass away?”

Jesus understood that subtext and knew how to answer them. He said, "Do you see all these things?... Truly I tell you, not one stone here will be left on another; every one will be thrown down." (Matthew 24:2 NIV)

Given that context, what do you think they had in mind when they asked Jesus, “Tell us, when will these things be, and what will be the sign of your presence and of the conclusion of the system of things?” (Matthew 24:3 NWT)

While Jesus’ answer wasn’t restricted by their assumptions, he knew what was on their mind, what concerned them, what they were really asking about, and what dangers they would be facing after he left. The Bible says he loved them to the last, and love always looks to benefit the loved one. (John 13:1; 1 Corinthians 13:1-8)

Jesus’ love for his disciples would move him to answer their question in a way that would benefit them.  If their question presumed circumstances that differed from reality, he would not want to lead them on. Nevertheless, there were things he did not know, [pause] and things they were not allowed to know, [pause] and things they could not yet handle knowing. [pause] (Matthew 24:36; Acts 1:7; John 16:12)

To summarize to this point: Jesus spent four days preaching in the temple and during that time he prophesied the end of Jerusalem and the temple.  Just before he left the temple for the last time, he told his listeners that the judgment for all the blood spilled from Abel right down to the last martyred prophet was to come upon that very generation.  That would mark an end to the Jewish system of things; the end of their age. The disciples wanted to know when that was going to happen.

Is that all they expected to happen?


Just before Jesus ascended to heaven, they asked him, “Lord, are you restoring the kingdom to Israel at this time?” (Acts 1:6 NWT)

It seems they accepted that the current Jewish system would end, but they believed a restored Jewish nation would follow under Christ. What they could not grasp at that moment were the time scales involved.  Jesus had told him that he would be going to secure kingly power and then returning, but it seems apparent by the nature of their questions that they thought his return would coincide with the end of the city and its temple.

Did that turn out to be the case?

At this point, it would be advantageous to return to the questions raised earlier concerning the difference between Matthew’s account of the question and that of Mark and Luke.  Matthew adds the phrase, “What will be the sign of your presence?”  Why? And why do almost all translations render this as ‘the sign of your coming’ or ‘the sign of your advent’?

Are these synonymous terms?

We can answer the first question by answering the second.  And make no mistake, getting this wrong has proven to be spiritually devastating before, so let’s try to get it right this time.

When Young’s Literal Translation as well as the New World Translation by Jehovah’s Witnesses render the Greek word, parousia, as “presence” they are being literal.  I believe Jehovah’s Witnesses are doing this for the wrong reason.  They are focusing on the common usage of the word, which literally means “being beside” (HELPS Word-studies 3952) Their doctrinal bias would have us believe that Jesus has been invisibly present since 1914. To them, this is not the second coming of Christ, which they believe refers to his return at Armageddon.  Thus, for Witnesses, Jesus came, or will come, three times. Once as the Messiah, again in 1914 as the Davidic King (Acts 1:6) and a third time at Armageddon.

But exegesis requires us to hear what was said with the ear of a first century disciple.  There is another meaning to parousia which is not found in English.

This is often the dilemma that the translator faces.  I worked as a translator in my youth, and even though I only had to deal with two modern languages, I would still run into this problem. Sometimes a word in one language has a meaning for which there is no precise correspondent word in the target language.  A good translator must render the writer’s meaning and ideas, not his words. Words are merely the tools he uses, and if the tools prove inadequate, the translation will suffer.

Let me give you an example.

“When I shave, I do not use scum, froth, nor spume.  I only use lather.”

“Cuando me afeito, no uso espuma, espuma, ni espuma.  Solo uso espuma.”

As an English speaker, you immediately understand the differences represented by these four words.  Though fundamentally, they are all referring to foam of some kind, they are not the same.  However, in Spanish, those nuanced differences must be explained by the use of a descriptive phrase or adjective.

This is why a prefer a literal translation for study purposes, because it takes you one step closer to the meaning of the original.  Of course, there has to be a willingness to understand, so pride has to be thrown out the window.

I get people writing in all the time making strong assertions based on their understanding of one translated word taken from their beloved Bible version.  This is not the way to understand Scripture.

For example, someone who apparently wanted a reason to find fault with the Bible cited 1 John 4:8 which says that “God is love”.  Then that person cited 1 Corinthians 13:4 that says, “love is not jealous.”  Finally, Exodus 34:14 was cited where Yehowah refers to himself as “a jealous God.”  How could a loving God also be a jealous God if love is not jealous?  The shortcoming in this line of simplistic reasoning is the presumption that the English, Greek and Hebrew words are all completely synonymous, which they are not.

We cannot understand any document, let alone one written thousands of years ago in an ancient language, without understanding the textual, historical, cultural, and personal context.

In the case of Matthew’s use of parousia, it is the culture context we must consider.

Strong’s Concordance gives the definition of parousia as “a presence, a coming”. In English, these terms bear some relation to each other, but they are not strictly synonymous. Additionally, Greek has a perfectly good word for “coming” in eleusis, which Strong’s defines as “a coming, arrival, advent”.  So, if Matthew meant “coming” as most translations imply, why did he use parousia and not eleusis?

Bible scholar, William Barclay, has this to say about one ancient use of the word parousia.

“Further, one of the commonest things is that provinces dated a new era from the parousia of the emperor.  Cos dated a new era from the parousia of Gaius Caesar in A.D. 4, as did Greece from the parousia of Hadrian in A.D. 24.  A new section of time emerged with the coming of the king.

Another common practice was to strike new coins to commemorate the visitation of the king.  Hadrian’s travels can be followed by the coins which were struck to commemorate his visits.  When Nero visited Corinth coins were struck to commemorate his adventus, advent, which is the Latin equivalent of the Greek parousia.  It was as if with the coming of the king a new set of values had emerged.

Parousia is sometimes used of the ‘invasion’ of a province by a general.  It is so used of the invasion of Asia by Mithradates.  It describes the entrance on the scene by a new and conquering power.”

(New Testament Words by William Barclay, p. 223)

With that in mind, let’s read Acts 7:52.  We’ll go with the English Standard Version this time.

“Which of the prophets did your fathers not persecute? And they killed those who announced beforehand the coming of the Righteous One, whom you have now betrayed and murdered,”

Here, the Greek word is not “presence” (parousia) but “coming” (eleusis).  Jesus came as the Christ or Messiah when he was baptized by John and anointed with holy spirit by God, but even though he was physically present then, his kingly presence (parousia) had yet to begin.  He had not yet begun reigning as King. Thus, Luke in Acts 7:52 refers to the coming of the Messiah or Christ, but not the presence of the King.

So when the disciples asked about Jesus’ presence, they were asking, “What will be the sign of your arrival as King?”, or, “When will you start to rule over Israel?”

The fact that they thought the kingly rule of Christ would coincide with the destruction of the temple, doesn’t mean it had to. The fact that they wanted a sign of his arrival or advent as King doesn’t mean they were going to get one.  This question wasn’t inspired of God.  When we say the Bible is inspired of God, that doesn’t mean that every work written down in it comes from God.  When the Devil tempted Jesus, Yehowah wasn’t putting words into the mouth of Satan.

When we say that the Bible is inspired of God, that doesn’t mean that every word written down in it comes from God. When the Devil tempted Jesus, Yehowah wasn’t putting words into the mouth of Satan. When we say that the Bible account is inspired of God, we mean that it contains truthful accounts alongside the actual words  of God.

Witnesses say that Jesus began to rule in 1914 as King. If so, where is the evidence?  The presence of a king was marked in a Roman province by the date of the arrival of the emperor, because when the King was present, things changed, laws were enacted, projects were initiated. Emperor Nero was enthroned in 54 C.E. but for the Corinthians, his presence began in 66 C.E. when he visited the city and proposed the building of the Corinth Canal.  It didn’t happen because he was assassinated shortly thereafter, but you get the idea.

So, where’s the evidence Jesus kingly presence began 105 years ago? For that matter, when some say that his presence began in 70 C.E., where is the evidence?  Christian apostasy, the dark ages, the 100-Years War, the Crusades and the Spanish Inquisition—doesn’t seem like the presence of a king I would want ruling over me.

Is the historical evidence leading us to the conclusion that the presence of Christ, although mentioned in the same question, is a separate event from the destruction of Jerusalem and its temple?

So, was Jesus able to given them a heads-up as to the nearness of the end of the Jewish system of things?

But some might object, “Didn’t Jesus become king in 33 C.E.?”  It appears so, but Psalm 110:1-7 talks about his sitting at God’s right hand until his enemies are subjected under his feet.  Again, with parousia we’re not talking about the enthronement of a king necessarily, but the visitation of the King. Jesus was likely enthroned in heaven in 33 C.E., but his visitation to the earth as King is yet to come.

There are those who believe that all of the prophecies delivered by Jesus, including those found in Revelation, were fulfilled in the first century.  This school of theology is known as Preterism and those who advocate it are called Preterists.  Personally, I don’t like the label. And don’t like anything that allows a human to easily pigeonhole someone into a category. Throwing labels at people is the antithesis of critical thinking.

The fact that some of Jesus’ words were fulfilled in the first century is beyond any reasonable question, as we’ll see in the next video. The question is whether all of his words apply to the first century. Some argue that to be the case, while others postulate the idea of a dual fulfillment.  A third alternative is that parts of the prophecy were fulfilled in the first century while other parts have yet to come true.

Having exhausted our examination of the question, we will now turn to the answer given by Christ.  We will do that in part two of this video series.

Archived Comments

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  • Comment by Alithia on 2019-09-26 02:45:14

    Good point about considering the language in the distant past. Language of another culture, nuances and meaning of the day, (Near middle Eastern ) and how it was used in a certain context.

    In fact many words over time come to have the opposite meaning that they had originally. For example the word "let" in tennis may seem strange to us today. However in the distant past let meant to disallow. The opposite to what we think today when we "let" something or someone. We think in terms of allowing.

    This understanding of language is so important in trying to interpret the scriptures as they should.

    But I do not think it is, or should be a cause of anxiety.

    When Jehovah confused the languages in Babel, when he inspired his word to be written and preserved for us today. He could foresee the difficulties that would come about from having it interpreted from Hebrew/Aramaic, Greek, then Latin then to a myriad of different languages with all of the accompanying difficulties, of translation, interpretation and rendering of words, sentences and phrases etc. over thousands of years through momentous cultural and other differences that would affect the meaning and understanding of languages!!!!

    Oooops, I was hoping to reassure everyone on this journey! Well what I am trying to say is that it is not beyond us to get to the bottom of things to a reasonable degree.

    Eric is at the wheel, and having dealt with the above preliminaries to understanding Jesus' words at Matthew I think it is a great start on this journey. At this point we are facing in the right direction.
    Remembering Jesus words too, most importantly that he would send the Holy Spirit to aid us in this quest to know and understand. This is what gives me the confidence that we will get there in the end.

    Love ya work Eric looking forward to the next instalment.

    Love to all from Alithia.

    • Reply by Meleti Vivlon on 2019-09-26 09:33:41

      Thank Alithia. It is the brothers and sisters like you that keep me honest and on track.

  • Comment by Leonardo Josephus on 2019-09-26 05:20:13

    An excellent start, Eric. You have helped us to reason on every part, skipping nothing. I really appreciate that. In my own notes I have taken the beginning of the Parousia as when the King "officially" begins his rule over a particular place. This is marked by some definite event as a start date. Does that seem reasonable ?

    • Reply by Meleti Vivlon on 2019-09-26 09:36:36

      It certainly does, especially considering his words in verse 27.

  • Comment by marielle on 2019-09-26 06:41:29

    Bonjour à tous
    Juste avant de répondre à la question des apôtres : quel sera le signe de ta présence*+ et de l’achèvement* (fin commune ou consommation) du système de choses*+ ? Jésus venait de dire en Matthieu 23 : 39 « Car je vous dis que vous ne me verrez plus, à partir de maintenant et jusqu’à ce que vous disiez : “Béni est celui qui vient au nom de Jéhovah*+ !” »
    Jésus parle donc de sa venue, de celui qui « vient ».
    Jésus parlait-Il d’une future présence invisible ?
    Pourquoi Jésus dit-il : « Vous ne me verrez plus jusqu’à ce que vous disiez béni soit celui qui vient, s’il est invisible depuis sa résurrection, et toujours invisible depuis 1914 ?
    On s’attend plutôt à le voir au terme de cette échéance. Vous ne me verrez plus, jusqu’à ce que...
    Que dit le collège central sur ce verset ?
    La Tour de Garde annonce le Royaume de Jéhovah 1990
    Ce jour viendra lors de la présence du Christ quand il entrera dans son Royaume céleste et que des hommes le verront avec les yeux de la foi.

    Qui a entendu des chrétiens dire en 1914 « béni soit celui qui vient au nom de Jéhovah » ?
    Les étudiants de la Bible pensaient à cette époque, que 1914 serait la fin, et qu’ils seraient emportés au ciel.

    Au sujet de cette parousie, le collège central admet qu’elle peut être visible.

    Perspicacité p 649
    Une parousia, ou présence, peut, bien sûr, être visible ; du reste, six occurrences de ce mot désignent la présence visible d’hommes, tels Stéphanas, Fortunatus, Achaïcus, Tite et Paul (1Co 16:17 ; 2Co 7:6, 7 ; 10:10 ; Ph 1:26 ; 2:12).

    Mais ce n’est pas le choix qui a été fait en fonction de l’ensemble des textes.
    L’adjectif « invisible » n’est pourtant pas épithète du nom présence en Matthieu 24 : 3

    - Pierre rapporte l’événement de la transfiguration en II Pierre 1 : 16
    « Non, ce n’est pas en nous fondant sur des fables habilement inventées que nous vous avons fait connaître la puissance et la présence (parousie) de notre Seigneur Jésus Christ, mais c’est parce que nous avons VU sa splendeur de nos propres yeux ».
    Voyons ce que dit Luc au sujet de la transfiguration.
    Luc 9 : 27-29
    « Mais vraiment je vous le dis, certains de ceux qui sont ici ne goûteront pas la mort avant de VOIR d’abord le royaume de Dieu+. » 28 Et en effet, environ huit jours après avoir dit cela, il prit avec lui Pierre, Jean et Jacques, et il monta dans la montagne pour prier+. 29 Et pendant qu’il priait, son visage changea d’aspect et ses vêtements devinrent d’un blanc éclatant.
    À n’en pas douter, ce même terme, parousie, employé par Pierre pour parler de Jésus dans le Royaume de son Père, était bien visible, et Pierre, Jacques et Jean en ont été des témoins oculaires.

    J’avais bien noté que Luc 21 et Marc 13 ne parlaient pas de « présence invisible » de Christ.
    Ils nous aident à comprendre que les signes avant-coureurs sont un prélude desa venue avec puissance et grande gloire, comme le fut sa présence glorieuse lors de la transfiguration.
    Matthieu 24 : 30
    « Alors le signe du Fils de l’homme apparaîtra dans le ciel, et tous les peuples* de la terre se frapperont la poitrine en se lamentant+, et ils verront le Fils de l’homme+ venir sur les nuages du ciel avec puissance et grande gloire ».

    Cette venue qui s’accompagne d’une présence extraordinaire, car les nations se frappent la poitrine en disant « nous avons vu le signe du Fils de l’homme, sera comme l’éclair qui brille d’est en ouest.
    Matthieu 24 : 27
    « Car la présence* du Fils de l’homme sera comme l’éclair qui brille de l’est jusqu’à l’ouest » Personne ne pourra la manquer. Un éclair ça surprend et éblouit. Pourquoi Jésus aurait-il pris l’exemple de l’éclair en parlant de sa présence pour expliquer qu’elle serait invisible ?
    Pendant des années il a fallu dire que ce verset, était à prendre au sens de discerner.
    Comment peut-on discerner un éclair ?
    Aujourd’hui, le collège central dit : « sa présence ne sera pas cachée ». Ne sera t-elle donc pas visible, aussi visible que peut l’être l´éclair ?

    Je partage avec vous mes réflexions bibliques sans prétendre tout comprendre.
    Je sais que les voies de Dieu sont inexplorables.
    Romains 11 : 33,34
    33 Ô que la générosité*, la sagesse et la connaissance de Dieu sont immenses ! Que ses jugements sont difficiles à comprendre et que ses chemins sont inexplorables ! 34 Car « qui est parvenu à connaître la pensée de Jéhovah*, ou qui est devenu son conseiller+ » ?
    Il y a cependant des explications du collège central qui défient la logique biblique que l’on est malheureusement obligés d´accepter, sous réserve d’excommunication.

    • Reply by Watchman on 2019-09-29 05:29:30

      I find it interesting how Matthew 24:27 is asserted as referring to the visibility of Christ’s return. There are just so many more images Jesus could have used to more clearly convey that concept. I theorize that Jesus was quoting from the prophets like he does several times in this prophecy.

      Look at the parallel account at Luke 17:24 For just as lightning flashes from one part of heaven to another part of heaven, so the Son of man will be in his day.
      What if the flashes of lighting aren’t a description of a span of time but rather of the Son of man or an action he is responsible for?

      Look at Ezekiel 21:9,10 “Son of man, prophesy and say, ‘This is what Jehovah says: “Say, ‘A sword! A sword is sharpened, and it is polished. 10 It is sharpened to inflict a great slaughter; it is polished to flash like lightning.’”’” “Should we not rejoice?” “‘Will it reject the scepter of my own son, as it does every tree?

      Ezekiel was frequently called Son of man by Jehovah. Jesus could have been drawing the audiences mind to that prophet. In verse 10 a sword is mentioned as flashing like lighting

      In verse 11 the sword is put into the hand of the executioner

      In verse 12 it says it will be used against God’s chosen people

      Verse 13 goes on to say the leaders (scepter) will be examined and destroyed

      Verse 15,16 again describes Jehovah’s sword as flashing like lightning and swinging from right to left (possibly connected to east and west):
      15 Their hearts will melt with fear and many will fall at their city gates; I will inflict a slaughter by the sword. Yes, it flashes like lightning and is polished for a slaughter! 16 Cut sharply to the right! Swing to the left! Go wherever your blade is directed!

      Verse 22 says that before the slaughter a siege will be laid against Jerusalem
      22 The divination in his right hand is pointed toward Jerusalem, to set up battering rams, to give the word for slaughter, to sound the battle cry, to set battering rams against the gates, to throw up a siege rampart, to build a siege wall.

      This would coincide with an earlier stage of Jesus prophecy at Luke 21:20
      20 “However, when you see Jerusalem surrounded by encamped armies, then know that the desolating of her has drawn near.

      Ezekiel 21:26,27 go on to describe authority (turban, crown) being stripped from the leaders of his chosen people until the arrival of the one with the legal right comes to receive it.
      26 This is what the Sovereign Lord Jehovah says: ‘Remove the turban, and take off the crown. This will not remain the same. Raise up the low one, and bring low the high one. 27 A ruin, a ruin, a ruin I will make it. And it will not belong to anyone until the one who has the legal right comes, and I will give it to him.’

      I think most would concede verse 27 possibly coincides with the second coming of Christ which would directly point us toward a greater fulfillment during the great tribulation at Matthew 24:30
      30 Then the sign of the Son of man will appear in heaven, and all the tribes of the earth will beat themselves in grief, and they will see the Son of man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.

      Finally after Jehovah’s house is cleansed the sword once again flashes like lighting against a gentile nation in verse 28 “And you, son of man, prophesy and say, ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord Jehovah says about the Amʹmon·ites and about their insults.’ Say, ‘A sword! A sword is drawn for a slaughter; it is polished to devour and to flash like lightning.

      Another possible correlation could be Deuteronomy 32. It could have a greater fulfillment during the great tribulation. I won’t go verse by verse but i think this chapters description of using a flashing sword against his people fits well

      36 For Jehovah will judge his people, And he will feel pity for his servants When he sees that their strength has waned, And that only the helpless and weak remain.
      41 If I sharpen my flashing sword And prepare my hand for judgment, I will pay back vengeance on my adversaries And bring retribution to those who hate me.

      Finally in Ezekiel 21 the sword represented the use of Babylon to discipline his people, during the great tribulation Gog of Magog will be used to carry out Jehovah’s discipline against his people described in Ezekiel chapter 39. After that discipline Jehovah will destroy Gog of Magog while stating why he allowed the attack on his people in verse 23.
      23 And the nations will have to know that the house of Israel went into exile because of their own error, because they were unfaithful to me. So I hid my face from them and handed them over to their enemies, and they all fell by the sword.

      In Ezekiel 39:17 every sort of bird is summoned to gorge themselves on the slain. Could these be the carcasses the eagles are gathered to in Matthew 24:28? My money says it’s got better odds then any speculation the GB has put out. Why? Because the support comes from other scriptures of prophecy known to have modern fulfillment in the great tribulation.

      Ezekiel 39:17 “As for you, son of man, this is what the Sovereign Lord Jehovah says: ‘Say to every sort of bird and to all the wild beasts of the field, “Gather yourselves together and come. Gather all around my sacrifice that I am preparing for you, a great sacrifice on the mountains of Israel. You will eat flesh and drink blood.

      Matthew 24:28 Wherever the carcass is, there the eagles will be gathered together.

      Due to the self condemning nature of these theories I have never shared them with anyone, even though redemption is foretold I don’t believe the GB is capable of staring down the barrel of prophecy of this nature even if they knew it was accurate.

      Would love feedback on scriptures that would prove this theory impossible or even unlikely

      PS I’m PIMI trying enlighten individuals on how to endure among gods condemned people

      • Reply by messenger on 2019-09-29 14:08:10

        In these vss (Matthew 24:24-30) Christ is speaking about the same thing, which is his return.

        Then if any man shall say unto you, Lo, here is Christ, or there; believe it not. 24For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect. 25Behold, I have told you before.

        26Wherefore if they shall say unto you, Behold, he is in the desert; go not forth: behold, he is in the secret chambers; believe it not. 27For as the lightning cometh out of the east, and shineth even unto the west; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be. 28For wheresoever the carcase is, there will the eagles be gathered together.

        29Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken: 30And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.

        In speaking of his return there Christ was also telling all Christians not to be fooled by other Christians who claim he has returned, but that everyone cannot see him. And at Luke 21:7-9 Christ specified some Christians will make that claim because they interpret what they believe are signs of his return, which he didn't state were signs of his return. Christ said they would make this claim though people do not actually see Christ, or they claim just a select group of people see him, but the world does not. That idea contradicts Christ's words.

        The way WT interprets parousia as "presence" rather than "coming," as it is translated in other Bibles, if anything should make this point even clearer, not less clear. If anything is known to be present it is observable; and in these scriptures under consideration Christ claims he will be observable to all people.

        In speaking about the deceivers, Christ is recorded at Luke 21:7-9 as saying:

        7“Teacher,” they asked, “when will these things happen? And what will be the sign that they are about to take place?”

        8Jesus answered, “See to it that you are not deceived. For many will come in My name, claiming, ‘I am He,’ and, ‘The time is near.’ Do not follow them. 9When you hear of wars and rebellions, do not be alarmed. These things must happen first, but the end is not imminent.”

        I didn't closely read all other comments, but I doubt anyone claimed the flashes of lightning spoken of at Matthew 24:27 mean a span of time. It's clear Christ was speaking of an event, not a span of time. Although he was speaking of an event that happens during a span of time, because all events occur during a span of time. In the context of these scriptures this event happens quickly, taking the whole world by surprise. And it's clearly an event that all people will know about, because they all see it-per Christ's words, not mine.

        Watchtower takes metaphors, like your metaphor in Ezekiel of the sword flashing like a lightning bolt, and then WT attaches those words to biblical or historical events that are not mentioned in the scriptures they took those words from. With a book as lengthy as the Bible, with as many allegories, metaphors, and similes in it, teaching that way you can come up with a hundred different interpretations on hundreds of topics. And if teaching that way Christians could never know what God meant without following someone else's interpretation. Thus arose church leaders, partly because of doing just that. And people followed those church leaders because of being raised that way, out of ignorance, or because of just choosing what they like to hear,their concept of God.That was not God's purpose in giving us scripture.

        God communicates clearly. Just as when any other author writes a book they often use the same words at different places in their book, but that doesn't mean when they do so their words relate back to previous statements, any more than it does in our own speech.

        • Reply by Watchman on 2019-10-01 01:54:28

          To be clear i do not believe Christ’s return will be invisible and I do believe that Matthew 24:27 does in fact support a visible awe-inspiring event. But by what means? What event should we expect? And more importantly why will it take place in the manner foretold?

          I do not believe our lines of reasoning are mutually exclusive. I would contend that at Revelation 2:22

          (22 Look! I am about to throw her into a sickbed, and those committing adultery with her into great tribulation, unless they repent of her deeds. 23 And I will kill her children with deadly plague, so that all the congregations will know that I am the one who searches the innermost thoughts and hearts, and I will give to you individually according to your deeds.)

          the great tribulation mentioned is the same as that in Matthew 24:21.

          (21 for then there will be great tribulation such as has not occurred since the world’s beginning until now, no, nor will occur again)

          That revelation 2:23 is describing the same moment in time as Revelation 20:12,13

          (12 And I saw the dead, the great and the small, standing before the throne, and scrolls were opened. But another scroll was opened; it is the scroll of life. The dead were judged out of those things written in the scrolls according to their deeds. 13 And the sea gave up the dead in it, and death and the Grave gave up the dead in them, and they were judged individually according to their deeds.)

          and Revelation 22:12

          (12 “‘Look! I am coming quickly, and the reward I give is with me, to repay each one according to his work.)

          when he will judge individuals according to their deeds. That revelation 2:25

          (25 Just the same, hold fast to what you have until I come.)

          and 22:12 each indicate that this judging will take place as part of Christ’s coming.
          Which in Matthew 24 doesn’t take place until verse 30.

          (30 Then the sign of the Son of man will appear in heaven, and all the tribes of the earth will beat themselves in grief, and they will see the Son of man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.)

          So why the distinction in verse 29 “after the tribulation of those days”?

          (29 “Immediately after the tribulation of those days, the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light, and the stars will fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken.)

          The visible events of Christ’s coming haven’t come to a finish. It could indicate a key shift in focus mid-great tribulation. 1 peter 4:17,18

          (17 For it is the appointed time for the judgment to start with the house of God. Now if it starts first with us, what will the outcome be for those who are not obedient to the good news of God? 18 “And if the righteous man is being saved with difficulty, what will happen to the ungodly man and the sinner?”)

          states that the appointed time for judgement will start first with us. (Christ’s congregation). And then move on to the ungodly. So again what would this first phase of the great tribulation look like and why would christ need to cleanse his congregation first? The 7 congregations listed in revelation chapters 2 and 3 provide quite a list, but again focusing in Thyatira in revelation 2:22 those committing adultery with Jezebel from within the congregation.

          So, circling back to the scriptures discussed in my original post, i put the question to you, could this clearly visible event be a reference to Ezekiel’s prophecy in chapter 21. Is that why he chose this imagery specifically.

          While in Matthew 24:28

          (28 Wherever the carcass is, there the eagles will be gathered together.)

          I learned some interesting things about 3 key words from Strongs concordance

          Carcass- 4430. ptóma vs body 4983. σῶμα (sóma) In the parallel account at Luke 17:37

          (Luke 17:37 So in response they said to him: “Where, Lord?” He said to them: “Where the body is, there also the eagles will be gathered together.”)

          σῶμα is used. It seems this is usually translated as body throughout the scriptures but in Matthew 24:28 ptóma is used, meaning 1) a fall or defeat 2) the fallen body of one slain. The only other times this word is used is in reference to the corpse of John the Baptist, Jesus and the 2 witnesses in Revelation 11. It would seem the way the body was killed matters. It was slain in defeat like all the other cases it was used.

          Eagles - 105. aetos - Matthew and the parallel account in Luke are the only times this word is translated as vulture but strongs states this is only due to context since Eagles don’t usually feed on dead bodies. But there are at least 2 times mentioned in the bible where all the birds of the heavens are called to feast on the slain. Ezekiel 39:17

          (17 “As for you, son of man, this is what the Sovereign Lord Jehovah says: ‘Say to every sort of bird and to all the wild beasts of the field, “Gather yourselves together and come. Gather all around my sacrifice that I am preparing for you, a great sacrifice on the mountains of Israel. You will eat flesh and drink blood.)

          and revelation 19:17,18

          (17 I saw also an angel standing in the sun, and he cried out with a loud voice and said to all the birds that fly in midheaven: “Come here, be gathered together to the great evening meal of God, 18 so that you may eat the flesh of kings and the flesh of military commanders and the flesh of strong men and the flesh of horses and of those seated on them, and the flesh of all, of freemen as well as of slaves and of small ones and great.”)

          With these future prophecies in mind I wouldn’t find it necessary to assume Jesus was describing vultures.

          Which brings us to the final term of interest - gathered together 4863. sunagó - this term can also be translated as invited like the accounts in Ezekiel and revelation above show, rather then lured by the smell of dead meat. Eagles will heed such a call along with the other birds of the heavens.

          When we compare the parallel accounts of Matthew 24:28 and Luke we find Luke has more detail at 17:37

          (37 So in response they said to him: “Where, Lord?” He said to them: “Where the body is, there also the eagles will be gathered together.”)

          There was a proceeding question. “Where lord?” They wanted to know where those who were abandoned in verse 35 would end up.

          (35 There will be two women grinding at the same mill; the one will be taken along, but the other will be abandoned.” )

          so we can see the birds and bodies are not metaphorical, they are at a place where those who aren’t saved will be tossed to be devoured by the birds.

          • Reply by messenger on 2019-10-01 06:53:04

            Ezekiel chapter 21 deals with a sword against the Jewish people, and against other people, before Christ came. So, I don't believe the flashing sword there relates to Christ appearing like a lightening bolt in Matthew chapter 24. See Ezekiel 21:27.

            Matthew 24 :28 is too ambiguous to pin down any interpretation with certainty. I note what others say about it, but do not attach my beliefs to what anyone teaches about that scripture. Nor do I attach my beliefs to my own feelings about it. Just Asking's belief about that might be correct, or yours might. I have always looked at that scripture as Christ giving a description of his dead body, with we, as Christians, gathered to it. In a sense feeding off it.

            I agree with you that the great tribulation in Matthew chapter 24 refers primarily to the worldwide tribulation before Christ comes again. But unless Israel builds another temple in Jerusalem before that time, then the statement has to allude to the AD 70 destruction of Jerusalem's temple also.

            The Bible speaks a lot about the end of the world. And as you bring out there are different outcomes for Christians, not just one in the same outcome for them. At Revelation 3:10 Christ promises to spare some from the test coming upon the whole world. Obviously speaking of the great tribulation. But in Matthew chapter 24 Christ said his followers will see the great tribulation, which he included among "all these things " he claimed they will see. Maybe all of those Christians alive at that time will see it.

            So, to me the unknown is how much of the great tribulation will Christians experience, and how many of them will experience all or part of it.

            Revelation shows that people will be saved through the great tribulation. God will also have his witnesses there to help people attach themselves to God. The two witnesses in Revelation shows that to be true.

            I don't worry about the scriptures that claim that Christ's judgment starts with God's house. I don't intend to get judged in that adverse way. As for those that will, all we can do is help them as best we can. Primary by delivering God's MESSAGE now, and during the great tribulation, should we find ourselves in it.

            On the other side of this mess we remember these things as experiences only, without any pain being attached to our memories.

            • Reply by Watchman on 2019-10-01 11:25:33

              I truly appreciate the ability to openly discuss true reasoning on scriptures. I only received the calling just last year and I feel the Holy Spirit has had so much to teach me. Haven’t been able to put the bible down for 11 months. But I’ve come to the conclusion I can’t trust that any individual detail it may have guided me to is the final truth on the matter. Especially when discussing prophecy. I believe I have a lot of false doctrine it has to clear from my mind, and a lot of new concepts to guide me to that I currently can’t conceive of. So I have been learning to just enjoy holding Jehovah’s hand on the journey. I can easily concede that Ezekiel 21 could be a stretch but ever since the GB released the Pure Worship Restored book the spirit keeps guiding me back to the prophets when searching for answers to understanding Revelation. For over 100 years the watchtower said that apostate Jerusalem represents Modern day Christendom. But the light got brighter and they pealed back that false doctrine from the old type-antitype way of thinking, not replacing it with a new understanding. This leaves the reader with the weighty but imperative task of prayerfully meditating on what the removal of such a linchpin teaching means for our understanding of all the Old Testament prophecies with an obvious reference to modern day fulfillment. Again, Ezekiel 21 may be a stretch, but what of Jeremiah 23, Ezekiel 34, Zechariah 12, 13 & 14, and Isaiah 9, 10 & 11. Portions of these prophecies have had an earlier fulfillment in 607 bce or 70 ce but they all reference the final coming of Christ in our modern day(or future undetermined) including references that could only take place during the millennial reign and paradise earth with no know fulfillments in the past. So my dilemma is how should I view these chapters of prophecy? Because the watchtower seems to be backing off things Rutherford taught. I don’t think we can pluck out just the verses that describe the coming of Christ. I think they are surrounded by details that must be fulfilled in the future even if they were also fulfilled in the past. So where does that leave us? With dozens if not hundreds of chapters in the bible with misapplications of who is represented by Jerusalem when Christ comes. So if it’s not the pope then who is it? I’m currently chasing the hypothesis that it represents true religion, God’s chosen people gone bad. I was raised to believe that is Jehovah’s Witnesses and will continue to do so until some other group or categorization of people can be proven to fit the bill better. I agree that we are seeing shocking unspeakable sins being uncovered. Jehovah foretold this would all come about and how angry it makes him and what he’s gonna do about it. This theory currently helps me sleep at night. But maybe the spirit is just patiently guiding me while I rub the sleep out of my eyes. Maybe I am yet incapable of conceiving of deeper and more freeing truth at this time and will fully awaken down the road. I hope so, i fear most of those I know and love would not make it thru such a refining. I can not tell you how much I appreciate the love of brothers and sisters on this site like you messenger. There is no process within the organization to challenge or question, at least not in a respectful and loving way. I thank Jehovah daily for guiding me to this community

              • Reply by messenger on 2019-10-01 23:41:20

                " So my dilemma is how should I view these chapters of prophecy?"

                You're not really in a dilemma brother. It's good that you desire to know as much as you can about God's word. That means you probably care about him, which seems to be shown in your thoughts. If your inability to know prophecy would cost you your life, then so would the inability to know prophecy by the mentally challenged cost them their lives. And that's not going to happen. That is not the type of God you follow.

                You will find many on this site who will gladly share their views on all sorts of Bible prophecy. And occasionally I might. But whether you come to an accurate understanding of those things, or you don't, salvation can still be yours. And you can know you have it, right now.

                Yes, some of the Jewish prophecies relate to Christ's future presence. But a lot of those Jewish prophecies probably also still relate to the Jewish people as a group, which contradicts Watchtower's replacement theology. See Romans 11:25."A partial and temporary hardening to the gospel has come over Israel, which will last until the full number of non-Jews has come into God’s family." RSV "Lest you be wise in your own conceits, I want you to understand this mystery, brethren: a hardening has come upon part of Israel, until the full number of the Gentiles come in," The full limit of non-Jews have not come into God's family yet, but after it has God again turns his special attention to Abraham's fleshly offspring.

                You see, some of the promises God made to the Jewish nation have not yet been fulfilled, including their possession of all that land God promised to that nation. And, as you already know, at Isaiah chapter 55 God said ALL his plans come to fruition. None of his plans can be thwarted. God also lives in our future. So he is always aware of what will happen in our future. He knew what the Jews would do when he made that promise, as well as other unfulfilled promises he made to them. All those promises will be fulfilled.

                Some Jehovah's Witnesses will live in the New World. I am not sure if any will have access to God's realm, the dimensions the Bible calls the heavens. They might, but I don't know that. Yet there will be people there, with bodies that can travel there and travel to Earth. I don't know if any Witnesses will have such bodies, because the JW religion is apostate. Not all its members, but the organization is. The organization's apostasy hinders it's members from understanding some very important Bible doctrines. Those doctrines are more important for Christ's followers to know and follow than understanding how Jewish prophecies relate to Christ's return.

                You are beginning to perceive scripture in ways you didn't see them before. If you develop a desire to research WT's deeds, policies, and its older teachings, I suggest two books. Both were written by an ex-Governing Body member. He is dead now. His name is Ray Franz. 'Crisis Of Conscience,' and 'In Search Of Christian Freedom,' are the names of his books. The two books will enlighten you to WT behaviors, and they might change your belief in your organization. Both books are extremely well documented, with dozens of old WT public publications, inner organizational communications, such as letters between branch offices all around the world and New York Bethel, letters to circuit overseers from New York Bethel, and minutes of Governing Body meetings. I have never heard or seen anything anywhere else that exposes WT to the degree those books do.

                You might be able to read the whole book Crisis Of Conscience online for free. I did about five years ago. Then several years back I purchased both books online. They were both expensive. I believe I paid $200-$300 for a new copy of In Search Of Christian Freedom, and $100 for a used copy of Crisis Of Conscience, in good condition.

      • Reply by Watchman on 2019-10-01 02:16:30

        Please see my reply to messenger above, i definitely agree that these verses support visibility to the whole earth but so much more as well.

  • Comment by Frankie on 2019-09-26 17:06:01

    Thanks a lot, Eric, for you hard work. Very impressive introduction. I really appreciate you systematic approach to clarify these scriptures, using the exegesis method, which is vital for every biblical examination (especially as to historical aspects in this article and problems connected with translation work).

    This topic is certainly important to many PIMOs in JW congregations and maybe it will help them tear down the GB-wall that is between them and our Lord. Well done, keep going! I look forward to next part.


    • Reply by marielle on 2019-09-28 07:00:03

      Que veut dire PIMO ?

      • Reply by Torso Boy on 2019-09-28 09:01:43

        Hi Marielle.

        PIMO signifie:
        Physiquement dedans, mentalement dehors.

        J'espère que cette traduction a du sens.

      • Reply by Frankie on 2019-09-28 17:03:12

        Abréviation anglaise
        PIMO = Physically In Mentally Out
        Il / elle est dans l'organisation, n'est pas exclu ou dissocié, mais en désaccord avec les doctrines.
        Amour a toi soeur en Christ.
        (Google Translator utilisé)

  • Comment by UserNameUnknown on 2019-10-01 12:47:13

    Whatever happened to "God took the understanding from the intellectual ones and gave it to babes"? Understanding the bible isnt supposed to be as complicated as all of this. I understand that some studying has to be applied, but c'mon. When I read words stating "you will not see me again until you say blessed is he who comes in the name of Jehovah" then by gosh the ONLY thing I can come away with from that is Jesus is saying he is not coming back until the Israelites recognize Him as the Messiah, because it was the Israelites he was addressing and they were the ones not accepting Him and they are the only ones who have ever been Gods chosen people.

    Look at their history. Its always been about them. No matter what they done, he was always doing something to try and win them back. The ONLY reason God even opened up the new covenant to the Gentiles was to incite the Israelites to jealousy, hoping that would bring them around.

    Remember, God isnt supposed to be one of change, therefore, the Israelites will always be "His people" no matter who the covenant was opened to. God sent Jesus here FIRSTLY to gather "His people"....Jesus even said so to the Samaritan woman when he basically called her a dog. Jesus even told his disciples not to go into certain areas because they were first and foremost supposed to reach the Israelites. It wasnt until those hardheads refused Him did he decide to open the covenant up to outsiders because He seen they were being receptive of Him. God sent Jesus here firstly for the Israelites......remember the parable of the wicked tenants....that speaks as clear as a bell who Jesus came to gather and why...

    If you arent a natural jew, you are second choice. Simple as that. What we non jews do or dont do is given second consideration. Jesus' return isnt dependent on some delusion of bible interpretation. Its still all about those Jews. Jesus isnt coming back until some percentage of them recognize and accept Him as the one they were expecting . This is why, I believe, that no one knows when He will return. No one knows the day or hour because it isnt about a time frame, rather, its about when the Jews, as a whole, come to a realization that He was who they were looking for. So basically, this world could go on for another 1000 years. Many jews ARE coming around, they ARE accepting Jesus whereas years ago they would kill another jew for doing such.

    Sure, non-jews are also supposed to be living the way Jesus taught back when, but I think us non jews need to humble it down a bit and not be so arrogant in the belief that we have anything to do with how things are going to play out because, well, we are second choice. The jews still play the important role here and they are the deciding factor in when Jesus makes His next appearance

    After having said all this, I will also say this. I was in the organization for a min. Not long enough to have every ounce of love pulled out of me, but long enough to understand that they are some sick people as a whole. I was not affiliated with any religion before JWs, nor after. What I had to say above this is what I came away with when reading the bible. It could be said that I was influenced by stuff I read or things people said, but Ive not read anything remotely close to what my mind took away from what I read in the bible and as far as influence from people....are you kidding me? Ive not found a person yet willing to discuss bible topics with me nor answer questions I have about things, so Ive had to go at it alone.

    I suppose its just as well. People tend to complicate things when they need not be. I certainly dont need any more confusion. The JWs supplied me with more than enough of that for a lifetime

    • Reply by Bernardbooks on 2019-10-01 16:14:03

      Hello usernameunknown.

      I always thought the organization’s interpretation of Matthew 19:28 fits what you are saying in your comments about making things complicated or ridiculous when interpreting what the scripture says very plainly.

      Matthew 19:28
      Jesus said to them: “Truly I say to you, in the re-creation, when the Son of man sits down on his glorious throne, you who have followed me will sit on 12 thrones, judging the 12 tribes of Israel.

    • Reply by Frankie on 2019-10-01 17:51:25

      Hello UserNameUnknown.

      Your thoughts reflect the scriptures Romans 11:1-26 and several others. Okay. But God has an intention with all mankind, of which the Jews are part only. There is "one fold, and one shepherd” now (John 10:16). And " For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him.” (Romans 10:12). Jehovah's solution for mankind is more complex than just "to incite the Israelites to jealousy, hoping that would bring them around".

      But yes - "And so all Israel shall be saved: as it is written, There shall come out of Sion the Deliverer, and shall turn away ungodliness from Jacob" (Romans 11:26). All those Jews who recognize Jesus Christ as the Messiah.
      This would be a long discussion, but it is off-topic with respect to actual Eric's video. Maybe another time, not now. You are not alone.
      Agape. Frankie

      • Reply by UserNameUnknown on 2019-10-01 21:45:04

        Well, I dont know about all that, being more complex. But the overall picture Im getting from reading the history of these people and their relationship with God, they have always been the center of anything God has done, including sending Jesus here. Now, in our day, everyone is scrambling trying to figure out what all of this means for us. When Jesus was sent here and spoke of the buildings and how not one stone would be left upon another, and everything else associated with that conversation, I have always believed He was speaking of those people in those days about those times. The tribulations He spoke of would be when the Israelites, those who heeded His words and fled, left taking nothing with them and going to places unfamiliar to them, without the security they were used to, without the temple they never thought would ever see come to ruins, because they had never experienced such a time before, and they haven't experienced such since.

        That verse I pulled from another post, "you will not see me again until you say "blessed is He that comes in the name of Jehovah" " is connected with this article. In my understanding it is. Jesus came to gather the Israelites, they refused Him, heck, they KILLED Him! But before they did, He told them they would not see Him again until they admit, accept and believe he is the Messiah. Then here we are today trying to figure out what it all means for us, complicating things in trying to make it fit us when what we should be doing is just holding fast to the commandments given us until we return to the dust from whence we came. The jews are the ones who need to get their act together, as usual, or this will keep going.

        We arent expected to do what the JW claim nor any other religion......preaching like they did back in the first century. By our living up to the commandments, we are doing all thats required of us. The preaching of the good news of the kingdom was first century apostles duty because it was new and not widely known. Once it had spread in all the earth, as it were back then, there wasnt a need for apostleship any longer as each one had the responsibility to teach it to their own and it carry through the centuries in that manner and continue until Jesus' second return.

        All this organized religious stuff certainly is not how it is supposed to be. All the complicated interpretations out there given isnt how its supposed to be or Jesus wouldnt have commended God for taking understanding from the intellectual ones and given it to babes. What does that passage say to each of you? It tells me that ones who try and bring complications to the scriptures would not "get it" but the ones who read it for what it is will get the meaning. It also tells me that you dont need to be a bible scholar to understand a passage when read.

        I have been searching for the truth of why Im here and what is to come since I was very young. I have been ignored, put off, lied to and deceived. This would happen every single time I would attempt to involve people when what I shouldve been doing is leaving others out of the equation and trusting what the words said to me. Only, I wasn't trusting what the words were saying by asking others for the understanding, and it only just occurred to me, just now, that this is where the issue lies in why I feel I cant get anywhere or understand anything. Its because I am not listening to the words, Im still thinking other people hold the answers or meaning to something I already know the meaning of. Ive just realized that when I read something, what it says to me at that time, is what I need to hold on to until such time that something else I read confirms the meaning or brings in a new understanding to me. Simple! As it should be. Jesus tells us that his yoke is easy and the burden is light. This is exactly how it was before the organization. I was more at peace before that awful experience. I was living by the commandments, not being burdened of a weekly ritual of religious practices, helping others in need, having genuine love for others and just living in a Christ like manner. But I eventually allowed people to influence me in thinking I had to do more, that I had to belong to some group in order to be approved by God, that I had to be able to throw out scriptures at a moments notice. That I had to know the greek or hebrew words of something or another before I could really grasp the concept of something. Hogwash! Its clear as day to me now. Leave others out of it, take what I read for what it is, and trust the understanding I come away with. No wonder I was always in a state of confusion. In hindsight, all the putting off I experienced when it came to bible related things was actually a good thing for me, unbeknownst to me at the time. It couldnt be any clearer to me now. Revelations certainly do come at some strange times, in strange manners.

        • Reply by Psalmbee on 2019-10-01 23:52:46

          Hi UNU,

          Welcome back to the wilderness!

          Isa 50:10


        • Reply by Frankie on 2019-10-02 18:23:15

          Hello UserNameUnknown.

          Dear brother, thank you for you response. OK, others continue, so I will. When I wrote that God's plan was more complex, I meant God's overall purpose for mankind and also for Israel. The very beginning of this Jehovah's solution lies at the moment when God made a covenant with Abraham, which He later reaffirmed with Isaac and Jacob. This is very important.

          When Jesus Christ came (as the promised seed), the nation of Israel refused Him (John 1:11) as ethnic group and this situation continues today. But is this situation permanent? Apostle Paul explained this in detail in Romans 11:1-26 as I mentioned in my previous comment, these verses are crucial to understanding.
          " ... Israel failed to obtain what it was seeking. The ELECT obtained it, but the REST were hardened,” (Romans 11:7). Those "hardened” ones were "broken off” from good olive (Romans 11:17).

          Let's continue to verse 15: "For if their rejection means the reconciliation of the world, what will THEIR ACCEPTANCE mean but life from the dead?” They will be accepted in future.

          But who and in what way?

          "And they also, if they abide not still in unbelief, shall be graffed in: for God is able to graff them in again.” (Romans 11:23). This will happen if they recognize Jesus Christ as the Messiah.

          Brother Paul continued: "Lest you be wise in your own sight, I do not want you to be unaware of this mystery, brothers: a partial hardening has come upon Israel, UNTIL the FULLNESS of the GENTILES has come in.” (Romans 11:25). This fullness of Gentiles - it has already happened? I think no.

          So there is some future for Israel. Why? Jews as a nation, as a whole, are still enemies for the sake of the gospel ! But they are the branches of their own olive (Romans 11:24). Paul concludes: "As regards the gospel, they are enemies for your sake. But as regards election, they are beloved for the sake of their forefathers.” (Romans 11:28). Jews are not beloved for their acts but for their forefathers. Please look at scriptures about Abrahamic covenant.

          But who of the people of Israel will be once again instilled according to the promise? Keeping in mind that it will probably not be a complete nation. And certainly not the state of Israel :o) . Because:
          "But it is not as though the word of God has failed. For not all who are descended from Israel belong to Israel, and not all are children of Abraham because they are his offspring, but "Through Isaac shall your offspring be named." This means that it is not the children of the flesh who are the children of God, but the children of the promise are counted as offspring.” (Romans 9:6-8).
          Yes, God takes care of them and has not forgotten His words or His promise to Abraham, even though Jews no longer have a special position.

          So my opinion is: Then Jews, who will be the children of promise, individual ones who will recognize Jesus Christ as the Messiah, after the fullness of Gentiles will finish, only then they say: ”Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Jehovah.” (Matt 23:39).
          Agape. Frankie

          • Reply by UserNameUnknown on 2019-10-02 22:23:50

            I am female :)

            • Reply by Psalmbee on 2019-10-02 23:31:16

              I had a strong feeling you were, but the scripture is good for all mankind, his or hers is the way I see it. Thanks for confirming! See below.


            • Reply by Frankie on 2019-10-03 03:47:39

              Oh, sorry dear sister. Women are equally beloved by Jehovah and His Son than men, but they are surely the more beautiful part of Christian congregation ?.

              I think that significant acceptance of Jesus as Messiah by Jews will take place still before Armageddon: Romans 11:23-27, especially verse 24.
              Please consider also the following verses:
              "For just as you were at one time disobedient to God but now have received mercy because of their disobedience, so they too have now been disobedient in order that by the mercy shown to you they also may now receive mercy. For God has consigned all to disobedience, that he may have mercy on all.” (Romans 11:30-32).
              BTW, entire chapter Romans 11 is about REMNANT of Israel and about Gentiles.
              Agape. Frankie

    • Reply by UserNameUnknown on 2019-10-01 18:58:21

      Welcome to my World, Justasking. I have not a little, but a LOT of trouble understanding most of whats written in replies. I was reading below a reply that mentioned the very verse I included in my original post...."You will not see me again until you say "blessed is He that comes in the name of Jehovah" " That one verse is what I base all that I said in my original post on because no one has ever been able nor willing to explain it to me, and I was explaining what that verse said to me. Since no one has ever been able to give me any other explanation of its meaning, I continue to believe it means just what it says...Jesus will not come back until the jews accept Him as the Messiah. If this is its true meaning, then I have to then believe that the jews have more influence over matters than people care to admit. It most certainly does fit with the article as the article addresses when Jesus is to come back, and the speculations surrounding this event, at least in part.

      So until someone can tell me exactly what that verse means, I have nothing else to base my belief on except what it is saying to me and it is telling me that Jesus meant what He said, and said what He meant.......No one will see Him again until those hardheaded Jews admit, accept and believe HE is the Messiah. And if He meant what He said, then all have to accept that the jews still hold some influence with God and are the ones holding things up from moving forward.

      As far as I can see, my thoughts on this is just as credible as any one else's , especially when no one has ever been able to give me an alternate explanation.

      • Reply by Leonardo Josephus on 2019-10-02 04:18:36

        Hi there Unknown,
        Jesus said Faith can move mountains. At Luke 10:12 he said it would be more endurable for Sodom in that day than for that city. These are hyperboles, exaggerations to make a point. When Jesus said, at Matthew 23:39, "you will by no means see me until you say...", he meant that it just will not happen, unless (and no one expects this) the Jews make some improbable turnround. It is made clear from the verse before "Your house is abandoned to you". That's it. He had done all he could. He knew what those religious leaders were plotting.
        It is not a prophecy.
        At least that's my opinion.
        However, welcome to this great site where we find we can discuss things properly.

        • Reply by Meleti Vivlon on 2019-10-02 12:53:09

          What an interesting take on that verse, Leonardo. Thank you for that insight.

      • Reply by Watchman on 2019-10-02 09:04:32

        UserNameUnknown you may find all the research below as overly complicated and thats ok. I’m not trying to convince you or anyone else I’m right, this is just the way I see it after many sleepless nights trying to make sense of it all.

        Matthew 23:39 is a perfect example of why we should turn to the prophets of the Old Testament to get a more complete picture of what we are reading.

        This will be a long post so here are the cliff notes to follow if you care to:
        Jesus is quoting from a prophecy at psalm 118 about the day of Jehovah when God’s people have to fight off all the nations with the help of God’s right hand, the one coming in God’s name, which Jesus identifies as himself. This is all happening because they are being disciplined. The righteous will be saved and have access to the gates of Jehovah’s temple built upon christ and his bride aka New Jerusalem. Might seem crazy but please bear with me to the end, it greatly informs on the questions being asked in Matthew 24 and Christ’s reply.

        Let’s start with why Jesus was in Jerusalem, he was attending the passover and then surrendering himself to be executed. At Matthew 21:1-5

        (1 When they got close to Jerusalem and arrived at Bethʹpha·ge on the Mount of Olives, then Jesus sent two disciples, 2 saying to them: “Go into the village that is within sight, and you will at once find a donkey tied and a colt with her. Untie them and bring them to me. 3 If someone says anything to you, you must say, ‘The Lord needs them.’ At that he will immediately send them.” 4 This actually took place to fulfill what was spoken through the prophet, who said: 5 “Tell the daughter of Zion: ‘Look! Your king is coming to you, mild-tempered and mounted on a donkey, yes, on a colt, the offspring of a beast of burden.’”

        He had two disciples procure a donkey for him to ride into Jerusalem, fulfilling Zechariah 9:9.

        (9 Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion. Shout in triumph, O daughter of Jerusalem. Look! Your king is coming to you. He is righteous, bringing salvation, Humble and riding on a donkey, On a colt, the foal of a female donkey.)

        At the end of the passover the Jews would sing the Egyptian Hallel psalms 113-118
        They sang it at passover and several festivals all year every year of their lives.
        Jesus and his faithful apostles probably sang it after the Lords evening meal. Matthew 26:30.

        (30 Finally, after singing praises, they went out to the Mount of Olives.)

        The last Psalm they sang, 118, is a song of salvation, restoration and victory that every Jew probably new by heart.

        At this point in his life many Jews thought he was going to become king and overthrow their Roman oppressors. So when he road in on a donkey at Matthew 21:7-9 they greeted him as described in psalm 118:25-27

        (Matthew 21:7 They brought the donkey and its colt, and they put their outer garments on them, and he sat on them. 8 Most of the crowd spread their outer garments on the road, while others were cutting down branches from the trees and spreading them on the road. 9 Moreover, the crowds going ahead of him and those following him kept shouting: “Save, we pray, the Son of David! Blessed is the one who comes in Jehovah’s name! Save him, we pray, in the heights above!”)

        (Psalm 118:25 Jehovah, save us, please, we beg! Jehovah, grant us victory, please! 26 Blessed is the one who comes in the name of Jehovah; We bless you from the house of Jehovah. 27 Jehovah is God; He gives us light. Join in the festival procession with branches in hand, Up to the horns of the altar.)

        But Jesus corrected them later at Matthew 23:39 by saying the prophecy at psalm 118:26 was to be fulfilled in the future. We can see John’s vision at revelation 7:9,10 matches the description

        (9 After this I saw, and look! a great crowd, which no man was able to number, out of all nations and tribes and peoples and tongues, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, dressed in white robes; and there were palm branches in their hands. 10 And they keep shouting with a loud voice, saying: “Salvation we owe to our God, who is seated on the throne, and to the Lamb.”)

        But we can see that the future fulfillment would involve a great crowd of all nations, peoples, tribes and tongues. Not just the Israelites. This make more sense when we look at the full context of psalm 118:

        Verses 1-9 don’t really provide key identifying details but
        Verses 10-14 says all the nations surrounded them and were warded off in the name of Jehovah

        (10 All the nations surrounded me, But in the name of Jehovah, I warded them off. 11 They surrounded me, yes, I was completely surrounded, But in the name of Jehovah, I warded them off. 12 They surrounded me like bees, But they were extinguished as quickly as a fire among thorns. In the name of Jehovah, I warded them off. 13 I was pushed hard to make me fall, But Jehovah helped me. 14 Jah is my shelter and my strength, And he has become my salvation.)

        Verse 15,16 describe salvation by the right hand of god. Which I believe to be title describing Christ’s prehuman existence, but thats a topic for another day

        (15 The sound of rejoicing and salvation Is in the tents of the righteous. The right hand of Jehovah is demonstrating its power.16 The right hand of Jehovah is exalting itself; The right hand of Jehovah is demonstrating its power.)

        Verses 17,18 tells us this is all happening as Jehovah’s discipline but not destruction.

        (17 I will not die, no, I will live, In order to declare the works of Jah. 18 Jah disciplined me severely, But he did not hand me over to death.)

        Psalm 118:22 is quoted at Luke 20:17 during the same visit to Jerusalem as Matthew 23:39 and possibly the same day

        (22 The stone that the builders rejected Has become the chief cornerstone.)

        (17 But he looked straight at them and said: “What, then, does this mean where it is written: ‘The stone that the builders rejected, this has become the chief cornerstone’?)

        It’s also quoted at 1 peter 2:4-7 where Peter describes the chief cornerstone as Christ and the rest of the anointed as being built in union with him to create the temple.

        (4 As you come to him, a living stone rejected by men but chosen, precious to God, 5 you yourselves as living stones are being built up into a spiritual house to be a holy priesthood, in order to offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. 6 For it says in Scripture: “Look! I am laying in Zion a chosen stone, a precious foundation cornerstone, and no one exercising faith in it will ever be disappointed.” 7 It is to you, therefore, that he is precious, because you are believers; but to those not believing, “the stone that the builders rejected, this has become the chief cornerstone”)

        Psalm 118:19,20 are describing righteous ones who are granted access to the gates of the temple mentioned above.

        (19 Open to me the gates of righteousness; I will enter them and praise Jah. 20 This is the gate of Jehovah. The righteous will enter through it.)

        One of the few examples of a type and anti-type spelled out in scripture is at Galatians 4:21-31. In verse 26 those of the new covenant are described as being children of the Jerusalem above

        (26 But the Jerusalem above is free, and she is our mother.)

        New Jerusalem is mentioned at revelation 21:2

        (2 I also saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God and prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.)

        revelation 21:27 describes those gaining entrance into New Jerusalem. There are 3 paths that result in this;

        (27 But anything defiled and anyone who does what is disgusting and deceitful will in no way enter into it; only those written in the Lamb’s scroll of life will enter.)

        1) those who make it thru the great tribulation and have their names written in the book of life, Daniel 12:1; Revelation 7:9,10.

        (Daniel 12:1 “During that time Miʹcha·el will stand up, the great prince who is standing in behalf of your people. And there will occur a time of distress such as has not occurred since there came to be a nation until that time. And during that time your people will escape, everyone who is found written down in the book.)

        2) The righteous who are resurrected who were written in the book of life, Daniel 12:2, Revelation 20:12, Acts 24:15

        (Daniel 12:2 And many of those asleep in the dust of the earth will wake up, some to everlasting life and others to reproach and to everlasting contempt.)

        (Revelation 20:12 And I saw the dead, the great and the small, standing before the throne, and scrolls were opened. But another scroll was opened; it is the scroll of life. The dead were judged out of those things written in the scrolls according to their deeds.)

        (Acts 24:15 And I have hope toward God, which hope these men also look forward to, that there is going to be a resurrection of both the righteous and the unrighteous.)

        3) those who become righteous by washing their robes during the millennial reign. Revelation 3:5 & 22:14

        (Revelation 22:14 Happy are those who wash their robes, so that they may have authority to go to the trees of life and that they may gain entrance into the city through its gates.)

        (Revelation 3:5 The one who conquers will thus be dressed in white garments, and I will by no means blot out his name from the book of life, but I will acknowledge his name before my Father and before his angels.)

        Psalm 118:19,20 seems to be a request to go down the first path; surviving the great tribulation. Then verse 26 describes the one who can make that happen, Jesus.

        Psalm 118:24 describes all these events happening in the day of Jehovah

        (24 This is the day that Jehovah has made; We will be joyful and rejoice in it.)

        And then we come back to 25-27 describing salvation and victory at the hands of the one who comes in the name of Jehovah

        Based on the events as jesus entered Jerusalem, and the two times he quoted parts of psalm 118, all during the week of the passover when everyone is getting ready to sing this exact psalm, I think he and the apostles had it in mind when discussing his promised return.

        Beyond that I believe Galatians 4:25 makes it very clear the “Jerusalem of today” is old news replaced by a newer heavenlier model

      • Reply by Meleti Vivlon on 2019-10-02 20:18:05

        I'm wondering if everyone is overlooking the fact that when the full number of the gentiles is filled, the end will come and the Kingdom will begin to reign. Then all the Jews that rejected Jesus will be resurrected as part of the resurrection of the unrighteous and will then have the opportunity to repent (or not).

        If we believe everything has to be fulfilled within the current system of things, we run into time problems, IMHO.

        • Reply by Frankie on 2019-10-04 18:05:06

          Hello Eric.

          I explained the future acceptance of Jesus Christ by Jews in my 2 comments 2 days and 1 day ago in discussion with UserNameUnknown.
          I think, crucial for understanding this topic are Romans 11, supported by Romans 10 and 9 - these chapters are about REMNANT of Israel and about Gentiles. Let’s consider also John 15:1-5. So I try to briefly outline simple timetable (IMHO):

          1. Jews as a whole nation rejected Jesus Christ (Matt 27:25). Some accepted Him. Others were cut out of the olive tree. “A partial hardening has come upon Israel” (Romans 11:7, 25). Temporary.

          2. Thenceforth the era of Gentiles has started. "Lest you be wise in your own sight, I do not want you to be unaware of this mystery, brothers: a partial hardening has come upon Israel, UNTIL the FULLNESS of the GENTILES has come in.“ (Romans 11:25).

          3. The era of Gentiles will be finished in fullness. After that the “partial hardening” will be over (Romans 11:25). Jews are sill loved for their forefathers (Romans 11:28). So “the children of promise, counted as offspring [of Abraham]” will be grafted back into olive tree/true wine/Jesus Christ (Romans 11:23). But not all Jews (Romans 9:6-8). And before Armageddon, they will be in the same state as other Christian Gentiles due to grafting performed by God. This process, mercy for both Gentiles and Jews, is explained in Romans 11:30-32.

          4. Then Armageddon comes. Those Jews that were grafted, will be kings and priests together with other Christians, because they will be Christians grafted into true wine (John 15:5), because Jehovah din not reject His people: “I ask, then, has God rejected his people? By no means!” (Romans 11:1).

          Those Jews, who died before Armageddon will live in paradise Earth with other unrighteous resurrected people (?????).

          Dear Eric, your opinion is welcome, especially that about grafting branches.
          Love to you and all.

      • Reply by messenger on 2019-10-03 01:41:34

        When Christ made that statement recorded at Matthew 23:39 he was directing it to a specific group of people, which was the Jewish group, at that time, that rejected him, fought against him, and supported killing him. Another group of people in their day did see Christ after he died, hundreds of women and men did. But those responsible for his death did not see him again back then. So Christ wasn't talking about those that saw him in the first century after he died. He was speaking about this other group of Jews that treated him as an enemy. None of that group would see him again until they make that statement he said they would (Matthew 23:39). And they will have no choice but to make it. That group and every other group of people will bow before Christ one day in our futures, and acknowledge who Christ actually is, not who his enemies said he was back then. God does not leave that as an option. If one wants to remain alive that is. ["10 so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth AND UNDER THE EARTH, 11and EVERY TONGUE confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father." (Philippians 2:10 &11)] Therefore, those people Christ spoke of in Matthew 23:39 will have to have died and come back to life to do that. Because Christ didn't return TO THEM, for THEM to acknowledge his true position while they were alive.

        Here's the context of that scripture:

        13Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You shut the kingdom of heaven in men’s faces. You yourselves do not enter, nor will you let in those who wish to enter.b

        15Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You traverse land and sea to win a single convert, and when he becomes one, you make him twice as much a son of hellc as you are.

        16Woe to you, blind guides! You say, ‘If anyone swears by the temple, it means nothing; but if anyone swears by the gold of the temple, he is bound by his oath.’ 17You blind fools! Which is greater: the gold, or the temple that makes it sacred? 18And you say, ‘If anyone swears by the altar, it means nothing; but if anyone swears by the gift on it, he is bound by his oath.’ 19You blind men! Which is greater: the gift, or the altar that makes it sacred? 20So then, he who swears by the altar swears by it and by everything on it. 21And he who swears by the temple swears by it and by the One who dwells in it. 22And he who swears by heaven swears by God’s throne and by the One who sits on it.

        23Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You pay tithes of mint, dill, and cumin, but you have disregarded the weightier matters of the law: justice, mercy, and faithfulness. You should have practiced the latter, without neglecting the former. 24You blind guides! You strain out a gnat but swallow a camel.

        25Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You clean the outside of the cup and dish, but inside they are full of greed and self-indulgence. 26Blind Pharisee! First clean the inside of the cup and dish, so that the outside may become clean as well.

        27Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You are like whitewashed tombs, which look beautiful on the outside, but on the inside are full of dead men’s bones and every impurity. 28In the same way, on the outside you appear to be righteous, but on the inside you are full of hypocrisy and wickedness.

        29Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You build tombs for the prophets and decorate the monuments of the righteous. 30And you say, ‘If we had lived in the days of our fathers, we would not have been partners with them in shedding the blood of the prophets.’ 31So you testify against yourselves that you are the sons of those who murdered the prophets. 32Fill up, then, the measure of the sin of your fathers. 33You snakes! You brood of vipers! How will you escape the sentence of hell?

        34Because of this, I am sending you prophets and wise men and teachers. Some of them you will kill and crucify, and others you will flog in your synagogues and persecute in town after town. 35And so upon you will come all the righteous blood shed on earth, from the blood of righteous Abel to the blood of Zechariah son of Berekiah, whom you murdered between the temple and the altar. 36Truly I tell you, all these things will come upon this generation.

        37O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, who kills the prophets and stones those sent to her, how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you were unwilling! 38Look, your house is left to you desolate. 39For I tell you that you will not see Me again until you say, ‘Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord.' ”

        With regard to Romans 11:25 &26-"25I do not want you to be ignorant of this mystery, brothers, so that you will not be conceited: A hardening in part has come to Israel, until the full number of the Gentiles has come in. 26And so all Israel will be saved, as it is written:

        The Deliverer will come from Zion;

        He will remove godlessness from Jacob.

        27And this is My covenant with them

        when I take away their sins.”

        It is most likely this starts to happen during the Great Tribulation or after it. Many scriptures suggest WT is correct about two groups of Christians sharing two different destinies. Even though WT is incorrect in its interpretation of John 10:16. In scripture Christ and his church are depicted as ruling out of Zion. They are depicted as ruling from there specifically during the time the New World is here. But who knows, according to scriptures in Revelation Christ might turn his attention to the Jews during the Great Tribulation, which is even before the New World. Certainly by that time he will have chosen all his gentile church members that will rule over people on Earth.

        For those who believe Christians all share in the same destiny (that of ruling over people on Earth) the answer should be even clearer. Because there are always millions of people being born in this system. And there are always millions of people becoming Christians. God would not stop people turning to Christ, simply to turn his attention to the Jews. God doesn't hurt other people by stopping them from becoming Christian to show the Jews that sort of favoritism.

        The whole point of God's promises to any Jewish group simply stems back to God's promises to Abraham. God intends to fulfill all his promises to Abraham, no matter how hard headed his descendants were. An implication in Romans 11:25 &26 is that some Jews will become a part of Christ's church after the Great Tribulation breaks out. ROMANS 11:24 "After all, if you were cut out of an olive tree that is wild by nature, and contrary to nature were grafted into a cultivated olive tree, how much more readily will these, the natural branches, be grafted into their own olive tree!" If not defined as a part of that church {IN ANY CHRISTIAN'S MIND} all Christians should at least acknowledge these fleshly Jews at the very minimum share in rulership over the Earth with that church. Many Christians feel the 144,000 spoken of in Revelation are literally fleshly Jews, and that they have nothing to do with the predominantly gentile church Christ establishes before the Great Tribulation breaks out. If those Christians are correct, then it makes understanding how God turns his attention to the Jews, only after the last gentile member is grafted in rather easy to understand.

        It is illogical to accept Watchtower's concept of replacement theology that excludes the turning (again) of God, to fulfill his promises to the Jews as a people. Illogical because Paul specifically refuted that idea in Romans chapter 11. He said gentile church members will be grafted into Christ's church arrangement only until their limit is fulfilled, and then (after that) natural Jews will be selected to be grafted into that arrangement (again), for the benefit of all Israel. Again Romans chapter 11 covers that idea thoroughly. The Bible statement that claims there is no Jewish preference, but any race could be part of Abram's seed does not nullify this other point. Those points are different ideas. Both ideas harmonize with God's overall concept of Christ's church and his fulfillment of his promises to the natural Jewish nation.

        The idea that gentiles could be considered part of Abram's offspring in also receiving the promises God made to Jews, has nothing to do with God turning his attention back again to Israelites to fulfill his promises. That it does is a WT smokescreen. For those who do not know what WT's position is on this, WT teaches that most every scripture that speaks of Israelites in the New Testament letters and book of Revelation refers exclusively to all of Christ's church, which is made up primarily of gentiles. While that idea applies to some of those scriptures WT's extension to include almost everyone of those excludes God fulfilling his promises to natural Jews, and is a bogus teaching, as shown in Romans chapter 11.

        As an example of WT teaching, even without looking it's current view up, I am pretty sure WT applies these scriptures that speak of Jacob to Christ's whole church, because that's how WT thinks:
        " The Deliverer will come from Zion;

        He will remove godlessness from Jacob.

        27And this is My covenant with them

        when I take away their sins.”

        • Reply by UserNameUnknown on 2019-10-03 20:45:53

          Exactly what I was saying in my posts, just said in a different way.....the first paragraph anyway.

          I understand he wasnt talking about everyone, as I know of the accounts of His being seen by many after His resurrection. The jews as God knew them, His people as a whole, would be the ones who wouldnt see Him because they denied Him. My point is this....when I read not just that verse, but also the history of their relationship with God, what Im getting is that Jesus will not return until the jews , as a whole, accept Him as the Messiah. I feel Gods plans included the jews so as not to completely abandon them and made provisions for them in these plans so that they may be saved along with the outsiders who were then invited to the new covenant. I cant for one minute believe that these people that God has such an intimate and merciful relationship with wouldnt hold some important role in His plans. I can not help but not just believe, but strongly believe that these plans will not move forward until the number of jews, to His satisfaction, come to accept Jesus as Messiah. It could very well be after the end of the gentile times that God softens the hearts of the jews, and uses that block off time as a last chance for them before He gives Jesus full power to bring about events that are to come. The below text is what causes me to feel this way

          "A hardening in part has come to Israel, until the full number of the Gentiles has come in"

          This^ .......this is what causes me to believe it even more that the jews are major role players. Just as God hardened Pharaoh heart when He sent Moses to free the people, the hearts of the jews will remain hardened until the end of the gentile times, in which time God will release this hardening and those jews that want to accept will be able to do so at that time. Then, when the jews, as a whole, become accepting of Christ, God will give Jesus the go ahead to do His thing.

          I just cant believe that, despite the jews actions and denial of Christ, God doesnt have some way of preserving His once cherished people and giving them one last chance to come to their senses, pre-resurrection. The history of their relationship screams this to me. God has shown more mercy to them than any other people. He hasnt abandoned them, and by giving them this chance, He isnt showing favoritism. Everyone else is having this same chance to accept Christ, I just feel He is giving the jews this chance in this manner because of the degree of disbelief and I feel God is dealing with them in a different way.

          The reason I believe its in the current system of things that God is giving this chance to the jews is because of the relationship of theirs in the past and He wants what was once His people to be a part of that co ruling, to give them that chance, at the very least. If He waited until after the resurrection, they would be of the unrighteous. I just feel if God had His rathers, it would be pre-resurrection, not post-resurrection, and I feel deeply that God has worked it so that something has been put in place for them pre-resurrection

          This is just what I get and how I feel when reading the history of the Israelites and their relationship with God, and, when I read certain things in the NT. Ive read all other opinions on the matter,(which have been just that, opinions) but nothing else has burned into my mind and heart as my current thoughts on it. Ive still not seen definitive proof of scriptures that refutes it.

          Im not so arrogant as to believe my thoughts are spot on nor right....on the contrary. Ive tried to be of a different mind and thought about it because it actually made me mad at the thought of a hardheaded, ungrateful group of people holding up the coming of Christ. Its like these thoughts arent mine, that they are burned in my head as well as the act of breathing. No one thinks about breathing, they just do it.

          Well, same goes on this subject. I never thought of this before, like this, until one day, I read Matthew 23:39 and I literally said out loud...Those jews are the hold up. We're waiting on the jews to come to their senses. This is why so many thousands of years have gone by, because the jews have held fast to their stubbornness and until they, as a whole, accept Jesus, nothing can progress. They have done this many times in the past. Many years went by of their idol worshipping and rebellious behavior, but they still came back to God and He let them back in. Letting the gentiles into the covenant didnt change Gods desire for His once beloved people to come back to Him. No, He allowed Jesus to open the new covenant up to gentiles as an enticement to bring His people back to Him..... but it wasnt until AFTER it was offered to the jews. Again, God sent Jesus to gather the Jews FIRSTLY.
          God was giving the jews the opportunity to turn back from what would end up being the very thing Jesus was sent here for...to die one time for man's sins......again, Jesus FIRST went to who? The jews. Ever wonder if the gentiles wouldve been invited into the new covenant had the jews accepted Christ? I have. Had the jews accepted Jesus as Messiah, would any others have been included? Ive noticed that it wasnt until after the jews denied Jesus that then is when talk of Jesus dying once for ALL began to be said. So it leaves me wondering had the jews accepted Jesus, would any other people be invited in the covenant? No other people have ever been in a covenant with God and when Jesus came, He was here FIRSTLY for the jews. Their denial of Him is the only reason any other people were invited. Parable of the Kings feast. That says it all.

          God has always had the jews first in His mind. I believe that is still true to some degree even now and I can not move away from that line of thought no matter what else I read or hear because in the end, it all comes back to this line of thinking.

          Apologies for beating a dead horse, but for the life of me, I just can not move past thinking that until the jews accept Jesus as Messiah, Jesus wont be making an appearance.

          • Reply by messenger on 2019-10-04 17:14:49

            You don't need to apologize. I don't mind a lengthy discussion or reading your thoughts. Romans 11 covers several points. One is that God does not turn his attention to the Jews, in the way that scripture speaks about, until the last gentile has been accepted into Christ's church, by Christ. Like WT I don't believe all Christians are members of that church. Instead I believe that many Christians will have only an Earthly destiny, while Christ's church has a heavenly destiny, possessing bodies that have the ability to come to Earth, for the purpose of benefiting humans and caring out Christ's wishes.

            So, I believe it is possible you are correct, since Christ could have chosen his church by the time he turns his attention back to the Jews, while other Christians are still being added to Christ's flock. At that time those added scripturally could not be members of that church, in light of what Paul wrote.

            Most commenters here disagree with my belief. Instead they believe all Christians share only an Earthly destination, with all members selected as the church Christ spoke of. And because of that it doesn't make sense to them God would stop the billions on earth from becoming Christians, only to turn his special attention to the Jewish people. And he would have do that if all Christians share the same destiny per the points I brought out about Romans 11.

            I personally believe Christ turns his attention to the Jews starting sometime in the Great Tribulation or after it. And like you, I believe Christ adds certain Jews he selects after the gentiles are chosen to his church to rule the Earth. It could be the 144,000 group spoken of in Revelation.

            The reason I believe he starts to turn his attention to the Jews during the GREAT TRIBULATION, or in the new world, is because Romans 11 speaks about this happening for the sake of all Jacob. Something will have to shock that many people to change their beliefs as a group. There is no event referred to in the Bible that will shock large groups of people until the GT. It is a test or time of trial to do just that. See Revelation 3:10. During the Great Tribulation a great preaching of God's truth will take place while people are shocked by the GT. Those Jews who practice Judaism will have a chance to accept Christ at that time, and the GT will provide a strong incentive to do that. If they don't they will be thrown into the Lake of Fire. For the ones that do accept Christ, he will bring them into God's New World where he brings about the fulfillment of God's promises to them; and at least some of them will share in ruling the Earth, existing in the same capacity as the rest of Christ's church.

            If the scriptures are referencing a time period when the majority of Jews turn to Christ, and that period happens to be during the GREAT TRIBULATION, then Christ still would have returned only after a great many Jews convert. Because Christ does not return until after the Great Tribulation.

          • Reply by Meleti Vivlon on 2019-10-04 18:18:50

            Matthew 23:39 is a verse that can be understood in a number of ways. Leonardo Josephus offers a thought that I had never considered before but seems to fit with the context.

            The other verses that have been expressed here in favour of some special mass conversion of the nation of Israel prior to the end can also be taken in more than one way. Basing any belief on ambiguity sets a very dangerous precedent, especially for a nascent congregation.

            I know that evangelicals put great stock in this theology which is why so many of them support political initiatives that favour the nation of Israel. Indeed, many of them believe that the battle of Armageddon will begin in Israel so they want to make sure the nation is intact so that prophecy can be fulfilled. Essentially, they are Christians who are friends of the Jews because we believe that Israel will be ground zero for the great battle to come.

            Ironically, the hypocrisy behind such a display of friendship escapes them.

            In any case, each of us has a right to believe what we wish to believe. However, if we begin to promote our belief, we run the risk of subverting the faith of others if that interpretation of scripture requires them to take some action. I'm not saying that is the case here, but we always have to be mindful of the thin edge of the wedge.

            The apostle Paul was vehement in his opposition to those who promoted the concept of circumcision for Christians. Some might wonder why since it's really a relatively minor operation. But he knew that if that was accepted would be a short step before they began to accept the law of Moses. Circumcision was the thin edge of the wedge.

            Both Russell and Rutherford believed that the nation of Israel was special even today and that God was making a special provision for them. A great number of fundamentalists also support this idea as we've just seen. With that kind of heritage, the concept is very suspect me. The nation of Israel will get its chance under the kingdom of God. But to say that it is going to get its chance before then is to enter into chronological calculations and we know where that has led and will continue to lead if we go back there. We always seem to get in trouble when we try to fix a clock to the prophetic word.

            You'll excuse me if I worry a little when I hear prophetic interpretations based on ambiguous Scriptures and personal feelings and interpretations. I would recommend all to exercise great caution. It's fun to play around with these ideas, and is nothing wrong with bouncing ideas back and forth as long as we don't take it beyond that. That's all I'm saying.

            • Reply by UserNameUnknown on 2019-10-04 21:12:52

              Whoa! Where did mass conversion come from? Where did promoting come from? I was under the impression this was a forum for discussion and for asking questions. Apparently I was wrong as not one of my questions was answered, but there was instances of words being put into my "mouth". When I stated "Jews as a whole" I wasnt referring to mass conversion. I simply meant the majority or even just a large movement in that direction, NOT masses of them necessarily coming into an acceptance all at once.

              I welcome anyone to REREAD my posts and pay close attention to phrases such as "what it says to me" and "what I got from it"...these phrases can not say anything other than what they were meant to say....that anything I had to say was the understanding I took away from what I read from the bible. I even said in one post that I wasnt so arrogant as to think my understanding was right. Did you miss that part?

              I also recall including the information about my past affiliation, or the lack thereof, of religious influences other than the JWs...but that wasnt long enough to become aware of everything the JWs ever believed. I know nothing of Russels nor Rutherfords take on this subject, nor am I aware of another human beings take on it as I have just in the last couple of months, after having read the history of the Israelites more closely and their relationship with God, come to this understanding. I WAS HERE TO MAKE SENSE OF IT ALL.

              I feel a terrible error has been made here. I also feel Ive stepped back into that horrid organization where people most certainly do NOT have free choice to speak their opinions or thoughts unless they line up with the material being presented. I am shocked as I expected better from certain individuals.

              I took a chance putting myself out there with this in genuine hopes of being able to discuss it without judgement or ridicule or any other negative effects, never mind being attacked and accused of it being something it isnt.

              Doesnt matter any more. The very ones who are supposed to help others understand are the very ones driving these away. Im done with all this religious stuff. Its done nothing but bring pain, deceit, confusion, and heartache, and if the God you serve accepts this type behavior and is ok with this type treatment of genuine hearted ones wanting to learn, then I want NO part of him.

              De Javu...Its the JW organization all over again

              • Reply by Meleti Vivlon on 2019-10-04 23:17:24

                Why do you rush to be offended UserNameUnknown? (Eccl. 7:9)

                I did read your posts and I do know that you said you were not so arrogant as to think your understanding was right. But did you read my words? Reread my final paragraph. I only asked that we exercise caution. That we not base a belief on ambiguous verses and personal opinion.

                You've turned my concern into a personal attack. You feel that you have been negatively judged. Yet, are you not judging others now? You say you have been attacked. But are you not attacking us when you say things like "I've stepped back into that horrid organization were people most certainly do NOT have free choice to speak their opinions or thoughts"?

                Or are you saying you have the right to say anything you want, but if someone is concerned about what you say, and expresses that concern, they've crossed the line?

                • Reply by UserNameUnknown on 2019-10-05 00:41:53

                  Doesnt matter any longer.

                  The WTBTS must be very proud of this Sister site

                  You can take the person out of the organization but you cant take the organization out of the person.

                  How very stupid of me to think otherwise

                  I shall not return to comment any further.

                  Have fun!

                  • Reply by Psalmbee on 2019-10-05 00:59:20

                    That will be your loss UNU. you have not been here long enough to get to know the people here and have not given enough time for us to know you. I think you are being premature in your judgement and immature with your last post!

                    I really hope you stick around, and that perhaps you're having a bad moment or day, it happens to all of us. Please reconsider!


                  • Reply by Sky Blue on 2019-10-05 10:43:30

                    When Jesus described how all would know who his disciples were, he didn’t describe what their doctrine or beliefs would be. Instead he stated that they would “have love among themselves”.

                    Love “is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no account of wrongs. Love takes no pleasure in evil, but rejoices in the truth. it bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.”

                    I for one, am thankful this is practiced here. ?

                • Reply by messenger on 2019-10-05 15:50:07

                  To: UserNameUnknown,

                  Underneath these opening remarks which I am writing at this moment is the response that I sent to you yesterday, right after that last response you directed to me (a day ago). I did not write it after the four or five comments were posted above this one. I wrote and submitted it yesterday, before those other members commented above. My comment was held over in moderation, while the others apparently were not.

                  I always comment based on reading as much as I can about any relevant information attached to a comment that is directed to me. And even though I usually skim some of the comments that reflect on those issues, I usually consider all of what is said before I offer a comment, once I enter into a dialogue with anyone. I didn't have a chance to do that with this response to you. Therefore, below these opening remarks, that I am adding after the fact, my words might have been different. But I cannot say, since the opportunity has passed.

                  As always, best wishes to you UserNameUnknown. In the New World all emotional pain will be removed, because God loves you.


                  ["I feel a terrible error has been made here. I also feel I've stepped back into that horrid organization where people most certainly do NOT have free choice to speak their opinions or thoughts unless they line up with the material being presented. I am shocked as I expected better from certain individuals. I took a chance putting myself out there with this in genuine hopes of being able to discuss it without judgement or ridicule or any other negative effects, never mind being attacked and accused of it being something it isn't."] Quote from UserNameUnknown

                  She's got a point Eric. My guess is most people that comment on this site, as well as other social media sites, first read from those sites for some time before deciding to comment. Whether UserNameUknown did that I don't know. But having been here for some time I do know she made some valid points.

                  Case in point: after UserNameUnknown directed her comment to me, you put my comment in moderation (a whole day ago), and interjected your comment instead. You still have not released my comment to her, although my comment is not offensive. That definitely is censorship, a point UserNameUknown brought out in her comment. For some time each comment of mine has been going through the moderation process, which is a censorship process. Your censorship process validates UserNameUnknown's point, because my comments are not offensive, except that the truth sometimes offends some members here. I list my personal experiences, not because they are personal, but only because I am aware of the facts involving them, while they lend support the claims made above by UserNameUnknown.

                  UserName claims she was attacked, and she claimed the attacks came from responses from other commenters she's read here, not just you. She also linked those attacks to a sort of censorship by intimidation supported by the site. Without going back to her history on record and commenting on that, I'll comment on my history instead, and offer that as evidence to support her claim. It is a fact that I have been attacked several times in rude ways by regular commenters here, and once by a frequent author of articles, and yet you (Eric), in each case, blamed the obstruction to civil Christian dialogue on messenger, instead of the rude members on this site rudely attacking me. An unbiased moderator would censor those making rude statements to your other guests, and let readers decide if the biblical ideas offered by members being rudely attacked are biblically valid or not. But in each of these cases messenger, instead of the members that were rudely attacking became the problem to you (Eric). Messenger was the problem, along with the fallacious statement that WE, as Christians, cannot know for sure truthful interpretations about certain specific scriptures his expository teachings included. That validates UserNameUnknowns claim that unless a commenter goes along with a certain theology presented by site moderators, they are silenced, and or attacked by members, and then after that silenced by the site. The Truth is known when it is heard by Christ's followers, if God wants them to know it. You are not the moderator of Truth, God is. What a false prophet or teacher teaches is only effective on those God allows it to impact.

                  UserNameUnknown appears to have felt compelled to say her belief was only her opinion. She shouldn't have even felt a need to bring that up. She probably did because that is constantly brought up on this site, as if it is Christian to do that. It is not. That is an absurd rule, or an absurd recommendation for one Christian to impose on other Christians about teaching scripture. It's not for Christians. If a Christian wants to interject their opinion, that's another matter, but suggesting they offer Bible truths as their opinions (as is often seen on this site) is against God. Every single thing written in scripture has just one true meaning. Even the ambiguous statements do. And no place in scripture are God's servants instructed to teach truths about God as their opinions about God. Whether others have different views, or because others do not understand biblical truth is irrelevant to speaking the truth about God (IMHO). I also notice this idea of presenting Bible ideas as personal opinions is hardly followed in the written articles. Author's of the articles present most of their ideas in those articles as facts, not opinions. The double standard also mirrors WT, in support of her claim.

                  I list these incidents as factual examples in support of UserNameUnknown's claim. These are areas owners of this site need to work on (IMHO). I list my personal examples because I am familiar with the facts around those. Not because I was offended by those on this site because of their behavior. So please don't imply that I'm taking offense. You cannot offend me. But you can do better here. I had invited folks from JWSurvey some time ago to comment here. I have yet to see one take me up on the offer. And some that I know from that site are practicing Christians, who are or were JWs. Your censorship has taken your site in the direction you have claimed in writing you did not want it to go. You have established a religion. While there is nothing wrong with religion, you can improve yours.

                  • Reply by Meleti Vivlon on 2019-10-05 18:27:57

                    You make it sound like I intentionally put your comment into the moderation queue, then aware of your comment, interjected mine instead. That is not the case. All your comments go into the moderation queue automatically, and I have to review them before releasing them. I neglected to do this in a timely fashion. My bad. But it was not intentional. So you have arrived at a snap judgement. When one feels misjudged, one feels the need to defend oneself, and the interexchange takes on a negative tone. That is something we want to avoid.

                    You make a valid point about censorship. Do you think that censorship is wrong, or are there degrees of censorship, some of which are called for and justifiable?

                    Of course, you have a right to say whatever you want--assuming you live in a country that supports the right of free speech. I find it interesting that no one ever talks about the right of free listen. Does the fact that every person has the right of free speech mean that everyone else is obligated to listen to them? Are we obligated to provide them with a free platform for them to preach from?

                    You see, if you come into my home, your right of free speech goes away, doesn't it? You can stand in a public place and speak freely as long as you do not disturb the peace, but in a private home, your right to speak your mind is at the discretion of the home owner. He might find your words offensive and ask you to leave. Is that censorship? Is that wrong?

                    You have come into my home, so to speak, by commenting on this website for which I am responsible. Over the years, we have gathered a large group of individuals who value the Bible and come here to freely discuss their research. It is nice to find a readymade audience for one's ideas, isn't it?

                    Unlike other sites where everyone feels the freedom to say what they will, how they will, and damn the torpedoes, we here want to enjoy a climate of peace and harmony. To that end, we have agreed to abide by some simple guidelines stated under Commenting Guidelines.

                    If you find these rules too restrictive, then you have the freedom to start up your own website and say what you wish, how you wish, or to go elsewhere.

                    I admit that when I feel someone is violating our guidelines, I do not always know how best to express my counsel to the end of correcting the problem. At times, I have caused offense. Sometimes I could have worded things better. Other times, I've come to realize, the simple act of offering counsel is enough to cause offense.

                    That being said, I will continue to do what I can to enforce our guidelines so that all can experience the kind of freedom we've enjoyed up to this time. If you think that is unfair censorship, then you have your right to your opinion, and I'm sure you would be happier elsewhere.

                    • Reply by messenger on 2019-10-05 19:44:13

                      Eric, if you cannot come to terms with the reality of my claims, so be it. Other readers are aware of them. Although we will probably see two or three of your frequent commenters support you, which shows you have established your own religion, despite that its size is seemingly quite small. Those points from UserNameUnkown are valid, and they are biblical. And whether her history here definitely supports her claims, the evidence I referenced from my history on this site, as evidenced by responses to my comments does support her assertion. For example, no scripture tells any servant of God to couch his/her biblical teachings in the words, "this is my humble (or honest) opinion," and then says to censor them if they don't, or restrict their conversation if they don't.

                      The point above about my comments being put into moderation was just one point I brought out. Though I don't remember every comment of mine going there until a month or two ago, I mentioned many other points in the comment above, because I felt you might get defensive and excuse that reference to comments going into moderation. Moderation is not the point of these comments. The point is censorship, how you handle attacks on your guests that are delivered by other guests, and the Christian freedom of all to speak and exchange ideas. All Christians who are not cowards will speak, because they follow Christ's example in doing so.

                      Of course you can censor comments if you choose to, it's your site. My comment didn't center on what you can do, it centered on what you should do as a servant of Christ. You are not presenting to the world a restaurant, with its own specific menu. You are presenting teachings about God, and inviting others to join you. You can do that like WT, or you can do that like Christ did until he was killed for doing so.

                      What readers can do, like start their own site, or whatever else you mentioned above, is off topic to the points UserNameUnknown wrote about, and the factual evidence I presented to support her claims. Of course we can do that. Anyone can. But that has nothing to do with our comments to you. Based on the low number of frequent commenters here it's likely most of those that realize these things who don't accept your action as proper Christian handling of biblical discussions will just not tell you. You might consider us an enemy because we did tell you, but if so, that choice arose in you, not us.

                      UserNameUnknown claims one of her reasons for coming here was to get answers to help clarify or support a belief she already had. I don't come here to get Bible answers from this site. I only come to spread God words. Though we commented for different reasons, UserNameUnknown and I both noticed the same deficiency. Do not believe many others have not seen it.

                      As for these points we made to you, I am through with them. The history of this site always presents some regular commenters, those who ride the coat-tails of site authors and administrators, jumping in to support their leaders. I see no point in engaging with any who do that. That is not my purpose, and I won't be sucked into that type of discussion, or the blame you because you blamed me, or you blamed my friend game.

                      • Reply by Psalmbee on 2019-10-06 13:35:05

                        Hi Messenger,

                        More than once, you have mentioned the JWsurvey site here. I've told you before that I got no use for that site or his t-shirts and coffee mugs he's peddling. Lloyd calls himself the reluctant apostate, that name doesn't fit him very well. I really wish you would have more respect for this site than what you are showing. I have read some of your comments over there, and most of them sounded like altercations with other commentators, and now you want to bring it here. Shame on you!


            • Reply by Leonardo Josephus on 2019-10-05 04:27:18

              Hi Eric,
              Thank you for balancing up my earlier comment. Jesus words can just as easily be fulfilled at the resurrection. It is so important to listen to all thoughts on scripture, and to sift out those that do not fit, and accept as feasible those that do not.
              If we do not do this, we easily become, as James puts it in verse 5-7 of James 1, like "the wave of the sea driven by the wind" and then we get nowhere.
              You run this site so very well Eric. May Jehovah and Jesus bless your determination and ability to keep doing so.

    • Reply by Sky Blue on 2019-10-02 08:20:34

      It was always my understanding that since Jesus stated “I will draw all men unto myself” he meant the unfaithful Jews wouldn’t see him until the resurrection under the Kingdom. Because like Peter who denied Jesus, having been forgiven, they would be shocked and eternally grateful at his unbelievable mercy. And then they would surely utter what Jesus told them.

      I just can’t see the Jews doing a mass conversion. Because if they didn’t do it then, with Messiah right before them, why would they do it now?

      But I do believe they will be given another opportunity for life under the Kingdom.

      Of course I am always open to considering further thoughts on this.

      • Reply by UserNameUnknown on 2019-10-02 20:44:04

        Well, I cant help but think ONE of the reasons the jews didnt accept Jesus was the fact that a guy was paid off to spread around the untruth that the apostles had removed Jesus' body so that the people wouldnt put any stock in the resurrection. That compounded with the fact that they were of the mind that Jesus would restore the kingdom at the time he came rather than it happening at a later time, and it didnt happen the way they expected. That rumor had to of played as crucial part in their disbelief as anything else, especially when the kingdom wasn't restored when they expected it to be.

        I wouldnt expect the jews to mass convert either. There doesnt have to be a mass conversion, just the fact that more jews are coming to their senses warrants notice.

    • Reply by Sky Blue on 2019-10-02 08:31:24

      Yes, and the scriptures that come to my mind on this are:

      Gal 3:28 “There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.”

      Col 3:11 “Where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcision nor uncircumcision, Barbarian, Scythian, bond nor free: but Christ is all, and in all.”

      Rom 10:12 “For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him.”

  • Comment by UserNameUnknown on 2019-10-01 12:54:01

    I think I should add that it wasnt the article I was referring to about being complicated. My reference is to the general discussed bible topics that seem to bring out stuff that would make any new comer feel they needed a Doctorate in something to understand. Eric seems to be THE ONLY person I have run into that doesnt fry my brain with his material. Everything else I try to read kills one brain cell at a time in attempts to understand it, so I dont waste my time on those any longer.

  • Comment by Bobcat on 2019-10-02 16:31:05

    Hi Eric,

    I hope you are doing well. I just wanted to say how much I appreciated your discussion and quote from Barclay on the meaning of the term parousia.

    • Reply by Meleti Vivlon on 2019-10-02 16:37:33

      Thank you, Bobcat. I'm doing well. So good to hear from you. How are you keeping?

  • Comment by Psalmbee on 2019-10-05 00:34:25


    "Just coming into existence and beginning to display signs of future potential"......Example: a congregation.

    I had to look it up Meleti, I like the term, I knew I've been sticking around keeping the bench warm for some reason! I second the coin! (Ezk 22:28)


  • Comment by Alithia on 2019-10-07 01:15:27

    I would like to posit a couple of thoughts that may help in understanding free expression speech and how we may view comments that we consider negative or not very helpful.

    In this politically correct world that we live in at times we may be influenced by the popular culture as to what is an acceptable expression of one's thoughts.
    Of course scriptural principles need to be the guiding force in determining what we say and when we say it.

    At times it is not just the case of the content of what we say, it may be the way that we say it. Or it may be the motive behind why we say a certain thing. Or it may be the impact of what we say which will adjudge whether what we have said is healthy, helpful, up building and righteous.Or if it only serves to merely tear down, separate people one from another, and generally not be encouraging.

    Possibly one of the best examples of speech that tears down, separates people one from another, discouraging and unrighteous can be found almost at the very beginning of man's existence.
    Satan using a cautious serpent asked Eve this question.

    Did God really say that you must not eat from every tree of the garden? After Eve's response Satan continued and said to the woman; you certainly will not die for God knows that in the very day you eat from it your eyes will be opened and you will be like God knowing good and bad.

    Well we all know the impact those very short seemingly in-noxious statements have had on the rest of mankind for ages!

    Was there any vulgar language is used here? No. Was there antagonism involved in this conversation? No. Was there any suggestion of anger in this short conversation? No.

    In my estimation in the record of conversations, this must be one of the most vile, slanderous, accusatory,violent and negatively impacting statements ever recorded!Those few statements can be likened to an atom being split causing a chain reaction that has erupted into an explosion of human suffering that possibly will never be fully comprehended!

    How careful one must be when deciding what to say. Considering the impact only a few words can have.

    Having said that God has seen fit to see that negative language has been recorded in Scripture. Even when it comes to his own Son!
    Jesus was called a son of fornication, a madman, having Demon possession, being a drunk and consorting with sinners prostitutes and tax collectors included!

    Of course this was terrible speech, yet it found its way in the Scriptures and it would seem with God's approval.
    And for what reason? There may be many reasons that one can consider. As Jesus said out of the hearts abundance the mouth speaks. In this way we could know fully the heart condition of those religious leaders who oppose Jesus. We could know the spirituality of those persons and their relationship with God! And many other things that we can deduce which we do with people in our general interactions in our everyday lives. In any case, Jesus was thick-skinned enough to tolerate this speech. We could consider this as an example for ourselves

    I mostly agree with the principles in Just Asking's open letter,except to say that up to a point perhaps we need to be tolerant with some people, just as God has been tolerant with the many hurtful things that many have said about him and his Son.

    In a way when these religious leaders spouted their speech against Jesus, the common people could see them for who they really were.Especially after Jesus performed amazing miracles glorifying God.
    In addition today it may give us the opportunity to exercise our Christian qualities and scriptural counsel as to how we should respond to people who's speech is far less than desirable.

    For example; our speech should be gracious season with salt. A mild answer can turn away rage. Choosing the right words like gold and silver carvings. And as Christians when we are called upon to give a reason for our faith, let us use every opportunity to hone our skills as to how we can best get the message across.
    If we are only amongst agreeable people all the time then we will never have this ability honed and refined whereby we can give an answer to each one.

    Also we must consider the following, Ecclesiastes chapter 7 versus 21 to 22; which says also, do not take to heart every word that people say, otherwise you may hear your servant calling down evil on you; for you well-known your heart that many times you yourself have called down evil on others.

    We have all been guilty often times with regards to the above. So perhaps we can imitate our God Jehovah and be gracious towards these ones as God has forgiven us much and the ransom sacrifice is contingent that we forgive others freely too.

    There is also the verses which God directly tells us that we should not counsel those who ridicule, sink to the same level as those who use bad speech. And much much other advice.

    In short all I want to say is that if we want to umpire speech, it is not as easy as what may appear on the surface! In addition does not the book of Proverbs, Ecclesiastes and Job already condemn improper speech? One only has to begin reading the book of Proverbs to see the numerous condemnations of the speech of the stupid one, of the fool, of the one that does not hold back his speech with discernment, the one who uses speech to divide people, to only deride and mock people etc etc.

    I know that speech perceived as direct personal attacks can be hurtful and unsettling. However we who are strong should bear the burdens of those who are weak. If others "play the man and not the ball", perhaps we can gently remind them of this propensity, but nevertheless if we are in this "game" let us focus our attention on playing the ball and not the man! Otherwise are we not doing what the others are doing anyway.

    Love to all from Alithia. Loving this series on Matthew for sure.

    • Reply by Meleti Vivlon on 2019-10-07 09:27:38

      Very nicely put, Alithia.

      Thank you for giving us that insight.

      I would like to add that the moderation queue is used on this site for first time commenters. So anyone commenting for the first time goes into the queue and has to be approved. Wordpress offers only four options. 1) free access, all can comment; 2) first time commenters have their initial comments moderated and if approved, all future comments are unmoderated; 3) a moderation pool. Putting a name in the pool will cause that commenter to be moderated for all comments; 4) Blocked comments, all comments form a particular commenter are blocked.

      I have only had to use number 4 a handful of times over the years to protect us from internet trolls and abusive speech. There are a lot of angry people out there looking to vent and there are others who are obviously mentally disturbed, so blocking is necessary at times, but fortunately in our case, only rarely.

      If someone goes into the moderation pool, I rarely have to block a particular comment, but will usually let it through. There have been times when I've advised the commenter to rewrite portions of his/her comment with a view to getting their point across in a way that "seasons their words with salt."

      I never block someone for disagreeing with me. That type of censorship I find unacceptable.

      One last word. Sometimes you may find your comment sent into the moderation queue even if you have been commenting freely for a long time. I don't know why that is. I thought it was due to a login from an unrecognized IP address, but that doesn't make sense to me given that the criteria is based on your login credentials. It seems to be a glitch in the Wordpress engine.

      One last, last word. Because of my work on videos, I'm stretched for time, so if I delay a day or two in approving a comment, it is due to workload, nothing else.

      • Reply by Sky Blue on 2019-10-07 10:26:12

        I believe Askimet (the WordPress comment anti-spam engine) uses sentiment analysis in their algorithm which may account for the seemingly random comments landing in the queue.


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