Matthew 24 – False Christs & False Prophets – The Gospels

Read Gospel of Matthew Text OnlineLeaving the temple courts, Jesus was walking away, when his disciples came up to draw his attention to the temple buildings. 2 “Do you see all these things?” he asked. “I tell you, not a single stone will be left here upon another, which will not be throne down,” 3 So, while Jesus was sitting on the Mount of Olives, his disciples came up to him privately and said: “Tell us when this will be, and what will be the sign of your coming, and of the close of the age.”1

4 Jesus replied to them as follows: “See that no one leads you astray; 5 For, many will take my name, and come saying ‘I am the Christ,’ and will lead many astray. 6 And you will hear of wars and rumors of wars; take care not to be alarmed, for such things must occur; but the end is not yet here. 7 For ‘nation will rise against nation and kingdom against kingdom,’ and there will be famines and earthquakes in various places. 8 All this, however, will be but the beginning of the birth pangs!”

9 “When that time comes, they will give you up to persecution, and will put you to death, and you will be hated by all nations on account of my name. 10 And then many will fall away, and will betray one another, and hate one another. 11 Many false prophets, also, will appear and lead many astray; 12 And, owing to the increase of wickedness, the love of most will grow cold. 13 Yet those who endure to the end shall be saved. 14 And this gospel of the kingdom shall be proclaimed throughout the world as a witness to all nations; and then will come the end.”

15 “As soon, then, as you see ‘the foul desecration,’ mentioned by the prophet Daniel, standing in the holy place,” (whosoever reads this let them understand) 16 “Then those of you who are in Judea must take refuge in the mountains; 17 And those on the housetops must not go down to get their things that are in their houses; 18 Nor must those who are on their farm turn back to get their cloaks. 19 And woe to the women that are with child, and for those that are nursing infants in those days!”

20 “Pray, too, that your flight may not take place in winter, nor on a Sabbath; 21 For that will be ‘a time of great distress, the like of which has not occurred from the beginning of the world down to the present time’—no, nor ever will again. 22 And had not those days been limited, not a single soul would escape; but for the sake of ‘God’s People’ a limit will be put to them.”

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23 “And, at that time, if anyone should say to you: ‘Look! Here is the Christ!’ or ‘Here he is!’ do not believe it; 24 For false Christs and false prophets will arise, and will display great signs and marvels, so that, were it possible, even God’s people would be led astray. 25 Remember, I have told you beforehand. 26 Therefore, if people say to you: ‘He is in the wilderness!’ do not go out there; or: ‘He is in an inner room!’ do not believe it; 27 For, just as lightning will start from the east and flash across to the west, so will it be with the coming of the Son of Man. 28 Wherever a dead body lies, there will the vultures flock.'”

29 “Immediately after the distress of those days, ‘the sun will be darkened, the moon will not give her light, the stars will fall from the heavens,’ and ‘the forces of the heavens will be convulsed.’ 30 Then will appear the sign of the Son of Man in the heavens; and all the peoples of the earth will mourn, when they see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of the heavens,’ with power and great glory; 31 And he will send his angels, with a great trumpet, and they will gather his people round him from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.”

32 “Learn the lesson taught by the fig tree. As soon as its branches are full of sap, and it is bursting into leaf, you know that summer is near. 33 And so may you, as soon as you see all these things, know that he is at your doors. 34 I tell you, even the present generation will not pass away, till all these things have taken place. 35 The heavens and the earth will pass away, but my words shall never pass away.”

36 “But about that day and hour, no one knows: not even the angels of heaven, nor yet the Son, but only the Father himself. 37 For, just as in the days of Noah, so will it be at the coming of the Son of Man. 38 In those days before the flood they went on eating and drinking, marrying and being married, up to the very day on which Noah entered the ark, 39 Taking not notice till the flood came and swept them one and all away; and so will it be at the coming of the Son of Man.”

40 “At that time, two shall be in the field, one will be taken and the other left; 41 Two shall be grinding at the mill, one will be taken and the other left. 42 Therefore watch; for you cannot be sure on what day your Lord is coming. 43 But this you do know, that, had the owner of the house known at what time of night the thief was coming, he would have been on the watch, and would not have allowed his house to be broken into. 44 Therefore, do you also prepare, since it is just when you are least expecting him that the Son of Man will come.”

45 “Who then are those trustworthy, careful servants, who have been placed by their master over their household, to give them their food at the proper time? 46 Happy will those servants be whom their master, when he comes home, shall find doing this. 47 I tell you that his master will put them in charge of the whole of his property.”

48 “But, should they be a bad servants, and say to themselves, ‘My master is a long time in coming,’ 49 And begin to beat their fellow-servants, and eat and drink with drunkards, 50 Those servants’ master will come on a day when they do not expect him, and at an hour of which they are unaware, 51 And will flog them severely, and assign them their place among the hypocrites, where there will be weeping and grinding of teeth.”

To read the Chapter 25 of the Gospel of Matthew, please go to: Parable of the Ten Bridesmaids.

  1. Read critical commentary about the end time theologies of the disciples and text found in the Gospel of Matthew at: Thy Kingdom Come Meaning. []