Matthew 24:35

This generation shall not pass till all these things be fulfilled. The position in which these words stand is significant. Many writers see references to the commonly called "end of the world" in vers. 29-31 because the imagery is so large as to seem unsuitable for a mere national desolation. Our Lord meets that difficulty, and distinctly declares that the figures picture events which belong to that generation. What needs to be clearly seen is, that this discourse of our Lord's is not a general discourse on the "last things," but a precise anticipation of the experiences through which his disciples were about to pass, and a gracious preparation for them. He was leaving those disciples to themselves. He had indications to the very last of their unfitness to be left. They were still so hampered by their notions of a material kingdom. They were Jews, full of Jewish ideas. It would be a distress to them that the Jewish system was to be put away, as having fulfilled its mission. It might even be overwhelming to them that the very city and temple were destroyed. Our Lord would forewarn them. Their knowledge of the fact would help them to think aright, and to act aright, when the time came. This is the key to our Lord's meaning.

I. THE DISCIPLES HELPED TO THINK ARIGHT. We know how great a strain on them was the opening of the gospel to the Gentiles. St. Peter had to explain his conduct in baptizing Cornelius. St. Paul had to give account of his teachings of the Gentiles. And we can understand how much greater must have been the strain, when not only were Gentile Churches formed, but the Jewish Church was broken up. suppose that our Lord had never spoken of this removing of organized Judaism. We can quite see that the Jewish Christians would have been altogether alarmed and overwhelmed. They could think aright, and realize the permanency of the Church as a spiritual institution, independent of, if related to, any material forms.

II. THE DISCIPLES HELPED TO ACT ARIGHT. Explain that, from a Jewish point of view, the centre for the new Christian mission must be Jerusalem. Those disciples would be likely to cling to Jerusalem in a way that would involve their personal safety. Our Lord therefore forewarned them. When certain events happened, they must finally and quickly forsake the sacred city. That there might be no self-delusions, no procrastinations, he made his meaning plain by the words of the text. - R.T.

But My words shall not pass away.
The characteristics of our Lord's words.

1. The authority which speaks in them.

2. Their elevation.

3. Their awful depth.

(Canon Liddon.)

The Weekly Pulpit.
1. The words of Christ are abiding because of their special inspiration. His words cannot die by reason of the living power that is in them.

2. The teachings of Jesus have a great and an enduring task to perform. The gospel has the "power of an endless life" which the work before it demands. Great things and great ends require great and large preparation. The Niagara Falls is one, if not the greatest, of the wonders of the world; but the river St. Lawrence was twenty-seven thousand years making the deep cutting in the rock which forms the cataract. The great task before the gospel, of bringing the light of truth to every heart, must be accomplished. The efforts of the Church must not be relaxed until this end has been attained. Whatever changes are woven into the nature of things the continuation of gospel teaching is inevitable. "The grass withereth, the flower fadeth; but the word of our God shall stand for ever."

3. As the gospel has survived the revolutions of more than eighteen centuries, so it will survive those yet to come.

4. The impression which the words of Jesus make on the souls of the redeemed is another proof that they shall not pass away. When the world has passed away, these words will abide in the hearts of men who have believed in Christ. Every portion of the gospel we learn and feel and practice will remain with us for ever.

(The Weekly Pulpit.)

"Heaven and earth shall pass away."


1. The forms of life and activity with which we are familiar pass away. The morning light, buds, seasons, living creatures, soon die.

2. If we extend our vision and take within its sweep not only the life of the individual, but the course of the ages, and the history of the world. These pass away.

II. AND YET IN ALL THIS THERE IS PERMANENCE. The form passes, but the material remains. Perhaps even the material may be our name for the unknown nothing, and there remains only the law, only the type, only the order, which unceasingly lives. Thus the form of the living thing disappears, but life remains; and that vegetable life which we saw so busy and so plentiful in forms of flower and leaf and tree, shall next year bring forth new flowers and put out fresh leaves; and when the trees that to-day stand erect, monarchs of the forest, shall, fallen prone, be slowly turning into the fuel of future ages, that same life shall yet be lifting up new pillars of the forest, tall and stately, beautiful and strong, over which new generations of branches and leaves shall wave beneath the sunshine and be swayed by the breezes of the future years. And so is it with the life of the animal and man. This animal, this man, may perish, but man remain. And the human race has not vanished. Babylon, Egypt, and ancient Greece and Rome have disappeared, but man remains, in his essential nature unchanged. The moods of the sensitive nature pass away and follow each other like the shadows on the mountain-side when the fleecy clouds are floating o'er the sky on a summer noon. And yet there is something that remains. There is the subject of these sensations; there is that element which is always present in these conscious states which knows itself and them, and the differences between each state, and the resemblances and the differences between itself and them, and the combination of all into one homogeneous whole. There is something permanent, something that lasts. You cannot destroy, you cannot waste it, you cannot, indeed, change it. It is itself — itself always — eternal, I believe, as the eternal God. Or we might illustrate it again in relation to thoughts, to ideas, to concepts; to those class cognitions of the mind which result from the comparison and the abstract classification of states of sensation, of memory, of judgment. We thus gain ideas — the good, the beautiful, the true, the evil, the human, the Divine. The individual states, the individual acts, the individual persons who, by these acts, produce these states — all these may vanish. They may be only a memory; or even grow in memory dim, and at last fade away from the last reminiscence of the soul; but the ideas we have formed — that abstract beauty, goodness, humanity, or divineness — these remain. Their light will play about other forms; their relations dwell within the caverns of our nature and fill them with music, or make them hideous with discord.

III. THUS THE WORDS OF CHRIST SEEM ONLY TO BE THE FOLLOWING, ACCOMPANIMENT OF WHAT WE SAW ON ALL SIDES OF OUR QUEST — THAT THERE IS A PERMANENT, AND THAT THERE IS A TRANSIENT. He goes down to the very base of the nature, and declares that a man must be born from above if he is to see the kingdom of God. The spiritual only can behold the things of that kingdom, which are wholly spiritual. The worship of God is to be in spirit and in truth. His own very words are to be interpreted in the sphere of the spiritual and the true, and the work He came to do for men was not to make their lot here easy or hard, not to spread life's path with flowers or with thorns; it had no respect to these mere circumstances and conditions of outer life. But it went to the very centre of being, to the inner personality of the man. And, as Christ Himself gave up all that He had that was external, material, physical, letting it all go in death, and living only in His living union with the eternal God, so must man live only in that living personality, letting all else die with Christ, and even when living, not living except as Christ lived in him.

(L. D. Bevan, D. D.)

I. The permanence and immutability of the gospel are proofs of the perfection of its plan.

II. The immortality of the words of Christ is proof of their perfect adaptability to the constitution and course of nature.

III. Is proof of their perfect consonance with absolute truth.

IV. Is proof of their identity with the ultimate basis of life.

V. Two lessons.

1. He that formulated this immutable scheme and must be Divine.

2. Upon these words of Christ we have an assured and stable basis upon which to build for eternity.

(E. S. P.)


1. "My Word." Who spoke this word? Jesus Christ the Saviour. Must not He be God who could fling upon the winds such a prophecy as this, and be sure of its everlasting success? It is not the word of Jeremiah, John, etc. They were the instruments, but Christ's word is nevertheless audible in all.

2. What are some of the marks and characteristics of Christ's word?Given in the Bible.

1. Authoritative. We hear men saying, "We want an authority:" here it is.

2. True.

3. Spirit and life.

4. "Never man spake like this man."

II. WHAT DOES CHRIST SAY? of His word? It shall not pass away. Empires, etc., have passed away, but the word of Christ still survives; it speaks with undiluted emphasis; it spreads with uninterrupted speed. All things that threatened to extinguish it have only aided it. Those things that once seemed to rise like mountain obstructions to its march are day by day dissolving like wreaths of snow in the sunshine, in contrast to the advancing and triumphant word of the Lord. And when the new heaven and the new earth shall come, Christ's word shall not cease. The only change will be, all its promises will be enjoyments, etc. Comfort for the believer. Of the least promise that you choose to select you may say, "Heaven and earth," etc. Encouragement to the seeker, worker, minister, etc.

(J. Cumming, D. D.)

1. The certainty of Divine truth.

2. The words of Christ considered in their necessary imperishableness.

3. The words of Christ shall never pass away, because they form the last of that series of communications given by God to a lost world.

4. Because they are founded on eternal truth, and on the fixed counsels of the immutable God.

5. Because of their connection with His own final glory as Mediator.

6. These are the words preached unto you.

(D. Moore, M. A.)

Daniel, Jesus, Noah, Noe
Jerusalem, Judea, Mount of Olives
Heaven, Pass, Sky, Wise
1. Jesus foretells the destruction of the temple;
3. what and how great calamities shall be before it;
29. the signs of his coming to judgment.
36. And because that day and hour are unknown,
42. we ought to watch like good servants, expecting our Master's coming.

Dictionary of Bible Themes
Matthew 24:35

     1615   Scripture, sufficiency
     4010   creation, renewal
     4028   world, redeemed
     4055   heaven and earth
     4203   earth, the
     4287   universe
     4930   end
     4938   fate, final destiny
     5698   guardian
     9122   eternity, and God

Matthew 24:32-35

     1431   prophecy, OT methods

Matthew 24:34-35

     1611   Scripture, inspiration and authority

The Carrion and the Vultures
'Wheresoever the carcase is, there will the eagles be gathered together.'--MATT. xxiv. 28. This grim parable has, of course, a strong Eastern colouring. It is best appreciated by dwellers in those lands. They tell us that no sooner is some sickly animal dead, or some piece of carrion thrown out by the way, than the vultures--for the eagle does not prey upon carrion--appear. There may not have been one visible a moment before in the hot blue sky, but, taught by scent or by sight that their banquet
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture

Two Forms of one Saying
'He that endureth to the end, the same shall be saved.' --Matt. xxiv. 13, R.V. 'In your patience possess ye your souls.'--Luke xxi. 19. These two sayings, different as they sound in our Version, are probably divergent representations of one original. The reasons for so supposing are manifold and obvious on a little consideration. In the first place, the two sayings occur in the Evangelists' reports of the same prophecy and at the same point therein. In the second place, the verbal resemblance is
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture

Watching for the King
'Watch therefore: for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come. 43. But know this, that if the goodman of the house had known in what watch the thief would come, he would have watched, and would not have suffered his house to be broken up. 44. Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of Man cometh. 45. Who then is a faithful and wise servant, whom his lord hath made ruler over his household, to give them meat in due season! 46. Blessed is that servant, whom his lord
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture

March the Twentieth the Lord is at Hand!
"Ye know not what hour your Lord doth come." --MATTHEW xxiv. 42-51. Then let me always live as though my Lord were at the gate! Let me arrange my affairs on the assumption that the next to lift the latch will be the King. When I am out with my friend, walking and talking, let me assume that just round the corner I may meet the Lord. And so let me practise meeting Him! Said a mother to me one day concerning her long-absent boy: "I lay a place for him at every meal! His seat is always ready!" May
John Henry Jowett—My Daily Meditation for the Circling Year

What Lasts, and what Passes Away.
25th Sunday after Trinity. S. Matthew xxiv., 35. "Heaven and earth shall pass away, but My word shall not pass away." INTRODUCTION.--Yes! all will pass away! This beautiful world and all that is on it. Our houses, our churches, our cities, will crumble away; the very earth with its mountains and rivers, and plains, and seas, will pass away. The stars will fall from heaven, the sun will have exhausted its fires, the moon will sink into night. But the words of Christ will last. SUBJECT.--Incessant
S. Baring-Gould—The Village Pulpit, Volume II. Trinity to Advent

"And Watch unto Prayer. "
1 Pet. iv. 7.--"And watch unto prayer." "Watch." A Christian should watch. A Christian is a watchman by office. This duty of watchfulness is frequently commanded and commended in scripture, Matt. xxiv. 42, Mark xiii. 33, 1 Cor. xvi. 13, Eph. vi. 18, 1 Pet. v. 8, Col. iv. 2; Luke xii. 37. David did wait as they that did watch for the morning light. The ministers of the gospel are styled watchmen in scripture and every Christian should be to himself as a minister is to his flock, he should watch over
Hugh Binning—The Works of the Rev. Hugh Binning

Of Meditation Upon Death
Very quickly will there be an end of thee here; take heed therefore how it will be with thee in another world. To-day man is, and to-morrow he will be seen no more. And being removed out of sight, quickly also he is out of mind. O the dulness and hardness of man's heart, which thinketh only of the present, and looketh not forward to the future. Thou oughtest in every deed and thought so to order thyself, as if thou wert to die this day. If thou hadst a good conscience thou wouldst not greatly
Thomas A Kempis—Imitation of Christ

"Take heed that no man deceive you."--Matt. xxiv: 4. "Christ in you, the hope of glory, whom we preach, warning every man, and teaching every man in all wisdom; that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus."--Col. i: 27, 28. To give a warning is a sign of love. Who warns like a mother, and who loves like a mother? Your mother, perhaps, is gone, and your father is gone. Let me take the place of those who have departed, and lift up a warning voice. With Paul I would say: "I write not these
Dwight L. Moody—Sowing and Reaping

Destruction of Jerusalem Foretold.
^A Matt. XXIV. 1-28; ^B Mark XIII. 1-23; ^C Luke XXI. 5-24. ^a 1 And Jesus went out from the temple [leaving it to return no more], and was going on his way; and his disciples came to him ^b as he went forth ^a to show him the buildings of the temple. ^b one of his disciples saith unto him, Teacher, behold, what manner of stones and what manner of buildings! ^c 5 And as some spake of the temple, how it was adorned with goodly stones and offerings, he said [The strength and wealth of the temple roused
J. W. McGarvey—The Four-Fold Gospel

The Second Coming of Christ.
^A Matt. XXIV. 29-51; ^B Mark XIII. 24-37; ^C Luke XXI. 25-36. ^b 24 But in those days, ^a immediately after the { ^b that} ^a tribulation of those days. [Since the coming of Christ did not follow close upon the destruction of Jerusalem, the word "immediately" used by Matthew is somewhat puzzling. There are, however, three ways in which it may be explained: 1. That Jesus reckons the time after his own divine, and not after our human, fashion. Viewing the word in this light, the passage at II. Pet.
J. W. McGarvey—The Four-Fold Gospel

The Christian Conception of Life Has Already Arisen in Our Society, and Will Infallibly Put an End to the Present Organization of Our Life Based On
The Condition and Organization of our Society are Terrible, but they Rest only on Public Opinion, and can be Destroyed by it-- Already Violence is Regarded from a Different Point of View; the Number of those who are Ready to Serve the Government is Diminishing; and even the Servants of Government are Ashamed of their Position, and so often Do Not Perform their Duties--These Facts are all Signs of the Rise of a Public Opinion, which Continually Growing will Lead to No One being Willing to Enter Government
Leo Tolstoy—The Kingdom of God is within you

The Evening of the Third Day in Passion-Week - on the Mount of Olives: Discoures to the Disciples Concerning the Last Things.
THE last and most solemn denunciation of Jerusalem had been uttered, the last and most terrible prediction of judgment upon the Temple spoken, and Jesus was suiting the action to the word. It was as if He had cast the dust of His Shoes against the House' that was to be left desolate.' And so He quitted for ever the Temple and them that held office in it. They had left the Sanctuary and the City, had crossed black Kidron, and were slowly climbing the Mount of Olives. A sudden turn in the road, and
Alfred Edersheim—The Life and Times of Jesus the Messiah

A Key to the Knowledge of Church History
A KEY TO THE KNOWLEDGE OF CHURCH HISTORY [Ancient] Edited by JOHN HENRY BLUNT, M.A. Editor of "The Dictionary of Theology," "The Annotated Book of Common Prayer;" Author of "Household Theology," Etc. Etc. "This Gospel of the Kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations."--St. Matt. xxiv. 14 Rivingtons Waterloo Place, London Oxford, and Cambridge MDCCCLXXVII [New Edition]
John Henry Blunt—A Key to the Knowledge of Church History

Our Lord's Olivet Discourse Shows that There is no Universal Triumph of the Gospel Before his Second Advent.
The Olivet Discourse of our Lord is recorded in Matthew 24, Mark 13, and Luke 21. We cannot now attempt a detailed exposition of these highly interesting and important chapters, but would simply single our from them a few things which throw light upon our present inquiry. At the beginning of Matt. 24 we find that three of His disciples asked our Lord, "Tell us, when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign of Thy coming, and of the end of the age?" (vs. 3). What then was the answer which
Arthur W. Pink—The Redeemer's Return

Third Sunday Before Lent
Text: First Corinthians 9, 24-27; 10, 1-5. 24 Know ye not that they that run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize? Even so run; that ye may attain. 25 And every man that striveth in the games exerciseth self-control in all things. Now they do it to receive a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible. 26 I therefore so run, as not uncertainly; so fight I, as not beating the air: 27 but I buffet my body, and bring it into bondage: lest by any means, after that I have preached to others,
Martin Luther—Epistle Sermons, Vol. II

The vineyard and Its Keepers
'Hear another parable: There was a certain householder, which planted a vineyard, and hedged it round about, and digged a winepress in it, and built a tower, and let it out to husbandmen, and went into a far country: 34. And when the time of the fruit drew near, he sent his servants to the husbandmen, that they might receive the fruits of it. 35. And the husbandmen took his servants, and beat one, and killed another, and stoned another. 36. Again, he sent other servants more than the first: and they
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture

Watching the Horizon
"Thy Kingdom Come." "Thou art coming! We are waiting With a hope that cannot fail; Asking not the day or hour, Resting on Thy word of power, Anchored safe within the veil. Time appointed may be long, But the vision must be sure: Certainty shall make us strong, Joyful patience must endure. "O the joy to see Thee reigning, Thee, my own beloved Lord! Every tongue Thy name confessing, Worship, honour, glory, blessing, Brought to Thee with glad accord! Thee, my Master and my Friend, Vindicated and enthroned!
by S. D. Gordon—Quiet Talks on the Crowned Christ of Revelation

Another Shorter Evening Prayer.
O eternal God and heavenly Father, if I were not taught and assured by the promises of thy gospel, and the examples of Peter, Mary Magdalene, the publican, the prodigal child, and many other penitent sinners, that thou art so full of compassion, and so ready to forgive the greatest sinners, who are heaviest laden with sin, at what time soever they return unto thee with penitent hearts, lamenting their sins, and imploring thy grace, I should despair for mine own sins, and be utterly discouraged from
Lewis Bayly—The Practice of Piety

There is a Blessedness in Reversion
Blessed are the poor in spirit. Matthew 5:3 Having done with the occasion, I come now to the sermon itself. Blessed are the poor in spirit'. Christ does not begin his Sermon on the Mount as the Law was delivered on the mount, with commands and threatenings, the trumpet sounding, the fire flaming, the earth quaking, and the hearts of the Israelites too for fear; but our Saviour (whose lips dropped as the honeycomb') begins with promises and blessings. So sweet and ravishing was the doctrine of this
Thomas Watson—The Beatitudes: An Exposition of Matthew 5:1-12

An Analysis of Augustin's Writings against the Donatists.
The object of this chapter is to present a rudimentary outline and summary of all that Augustin penned or spoke against those traditional North African Christians whom he was pleased to regard as schismatics. It will be arranged, so far as may be, in chronological order, following the dates suggested by the Benedictine edition. The necessary brevity precludes anything but a very meagre treatment of so considerable a theme. The writer takes no responsibility for the ecclesiological tenets of the
St. Augustine—writings in connection with the donatist controversy.

The Completion of Our Saviour's Prophecies Confirmed Pagans in their Belief of the Gospel.
I. The completion of our Saviour's Prophecies confirmed Pagans in their belief of the gospel. II. Origen's observation on our Saviour's disciples being brought before kings and governors; III. On their being persecuted for their religion; IV. On their preaching the gospel to all nations. V. On the destruction of Jerusalem, and ruin of the Jewish oeconomy. VI. These arguments strengthened by what has happened since Origen's time. I. THE second of these extraordinary means, of great use to the learned
Joseph Addison—The Evidences of the Christian Religion, with Additional Discourses

I. (i) Against Eunomius. The work under this title comprises five books, the first three generally accepted as genuine, the last two sometimes regarded as doubtful. Gregory of Nazianzus, [303] Jerome, [304] and Theodoret [305] all testify to Basil's having written against Eunomius, but do not specify the number of books. Books IV. and V. are accepted by Bellarmine, Du Pin, Tillemont, and Ceillier, mainly on the authority of the edict of Justinian against the Three Chapters (Mansi ix., 552),
Basil—Basil: Letters and Select Works

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