Matthew 23 -- 24
Following the cleansing of the Temple and the denouncing of the religious leaders as hypocrites, the Lord sat with His disciples on the Mount of Olives and foretold: Many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many. And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold. But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved. And this Gospel of the Kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come. . . . Heaven and earth shall pass away, but My words shall not pass away (Matthew 24:11-14,35). Many false prophets oppose the authority of Christ, not by outward opposition, but by merely ignoring His Word. Some are even popular preachers appealing to what people want to hear. Like the Pharisees of old, the false prophets today substitute contemporary opinions for the authority of Gods Word. On the Mount of Olives, just three days before His crucifixion, our Lord foretold the destruction of the Temple that took place about 40 years after His resurrection; and He spoke of His return; But of that day and hour knows no man, no, not the angels of Heaven, but My Father only (24:36). He also warned: Watch therefore: for you know not what hour your Lord does come. . . . Therefore be . . . ready: for in such an hour as you think not the Son of Man comes (24:42,44). Jesus made no attempt to detail the near destruction of Jerusalem, nor the more distant end of the age. But these words from the King emphasize the importance of being prepared.
Our Lord spoke of two servants, and He said: Who then is a faithful and wise servant, whom his lord has made ruler over his household, to give them meat in due season? Blessed is that servant, whom his lord when he comes shall find so doing. . . . But if that evil servant shall say in his heart, my lord delays his coming; And shall begin to beat his fellowservants, and to eat and drink with the drunken; The lord of that servant shall come on a day when he is not looking for him, and in an hour that he is not aware of him, And shall cut him asunder, and appoint him his portion with the hypocrites: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth (24:45-46,48-51).
Christ's disciples are likened to servants who are left in charge and will be held accountable when the Master returns. The true servant of God will be found doing the will of Christ when He returns.
The unfaithful servant is one who may not be guilty of committing gross sins, but who gets involved in personal activities that crowd out his opportunities of service to his master.
While on earth, Christ was among His disciples as One who served, but the unfaithful servant will eat and drink with the drunken (24:49) and fails to warn them of the day of judgment. Feasting together is one way of having fellowship; therefore, we are warned have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them. . . . Wherefore be not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is (Ephesians 5:11,17).
For Matthew 23:39: See Psa. 118:26. Matt. 24:15: See Dan. 9:27; 11:31; 12:11. Matt. 24:29: See Isa. 13:10; 24:23; 34:4; Ezek. 32:7; Joel 2:10,31; 3:15; Zeph. 1:15. Matt. 24:30: See Dan. 7:13. Matt. 24:31: See Deut. 4:32; Isa. 27:13; Dan. 7:2; Zech. 2:6. Matt. 24:38: See Gen. 7:7.
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