Mark 13:3-23: The End of Times

Mark 1_12-13

Mark 13:3-13

And as he came out of the temple, one of his disciples said to him, “Look, Teacher, what wonderful stones and what wonderful buildings!” And Jesus said to him, “Do you see these great buildings? There will not be left here one stone upon another that will not be thrown down.” 

As Jesus finished teaching in the temple, they came out and one of the disciples saw how beautiful the temple walls and stones are but Jesus declared that a time will come when the temple will be destroyed. It seems like He was pertaining about His death and how He will rise again. Though some scholars think He was pertaining to the end of times.

But what would be clearly seen in this text, is that Jesus was talking about two destructions that would happen – one imminent and one future destruction. Verse 1-2 was the present destruction that would happen and the other is an end times destruction Jesus was pertaining to.

Let’s now look closely at what Jesus was saying about the end times.

And as he sat on the Mount of Olives opposite the temple, Peter and James and John and Andrew asked him privately, “Tell us, when will these things be, and what will be the sign when all these things are about to be accomplished?” And Jesus began to say to them, “See that no one leads you astray. Many will come in my name, saying, ‘I am he!’ and they will lead many astray. And when you hear of wars and rumors of wars, do not be alarmed. This must take place, but the end is not yet. For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be earthquakes in various places; there will be famines. These are but the beginning of the birth pains.

The end of times topic was something the disciples brought up because they were wondering what Jesus said earlier in the temple. Jesus then gave them signs to look out for before the end will come.

  1. There will be false prophets and false Christ.
  2. There will be wars and rumors of wars.
  3. Earthquakes and natural calamities
  4. Famines

Yet Jesus said, this is just the beginning of birth pains. This won’t even be the end of times.

“But be on your guard. For they will deliver you over to councils, and you will be beaten in synagogues, and you will stand before governors and kings for my sake, to bear witness before them. 10 And the gospel must first be proclaimed to all nations. 11 And when they bring you to trial and deliver you over, do not be anxious beforehand what you are to say, but say whatever is given you in that hour, for it is not you who speak, but the Holy Spirit. 12 And brother will deliver brother over to death, and the father his child, and children will rise against parents and have them put to death. 13 And you will be hated by all for my name’s sake. But the one who endures to the end will be saved.

Jesus then commands the church to be on guard because of the persecutions that would happen as the end draws near. From being delivered to court, being beaten up because of your faith and to be in front of kings to be tried yet it will be a time to preach the gospel. Jesus then made a declaration that the gospel must first be proclaimed to all nations before the end will come.

This means that there is great work to be done and the task is still unfinished. There is a lot that the church needs to do to make things happen. It means we must embrace our discipleship mandate and reach the unreachable. This will all be happening, the end time harvest and the end time persecution simultaneously.

Mark 13:14-23

14 “But when you see the abomination of desolation standing where he ought not to be (let the reader understand), then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains. 15 Let the one who is on the housetop not go down, nor enter his house, to take anything out, 16 and let the one who is in the field not turn back to take his cloak. 17 And alas for women who are pregnant and for those who are nursing infants in those days! 18 Pray that it may not happen in winter. 19 For in those days there will be such tribulation as has not been from the beginning of the creation that God created until now, and never will be. 20 And if the Lord had not cut short the days, no human being would be saved. But for the sake of the elect, whom he chose, he shortened the days. 21 And then if anyone says to you, ‘Look, here is the Christ!’ or ‘Look, there he is!’ do not believe it. 22 For false christs and false prophets will arise and perform signs and wonders, to lead astray, if possible, the elect. 23 But be on guard; I have told you all things beforehand.

Christianity since the beginning has never been the easy path to take. With our faith comes persecutions and suffering. Yet, we all know that as we guard ourselves and persevere in the faith – the rewards of God’s presence is more than enough to sustain us.

Lord prepare me as your child to face trials and persecution as I prepare myself and others to meet you one day. 

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