When is the end of the age?

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jaydam
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When is the end of the age?

Post by jaydam » Fri Jan 03, 2014 2:42 am

Mt 24:3; Mt 28:20; Heb 9:26

I'm interested in what age each of these would be talking about, and then in general, is the belief that utilization of "end of the age" or "end of the ages" in the NT generally points to one certain time, or are we looking at multiple ages ending?

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robbyyoung
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Re: When is the end of the age?

Post by robbyyoung » Fri Jan 03, 2014 11:49 am

jaydam wrote:Mt 24:3; Mt 28:20; Heb 9:26

I'm interested in what age each of these would be talking about, and then in general, is the belief that utilization of "end of the age" or "end of the ages" in the NT generally points to one certain time, or are we looking at multiple ages ending?
Hi Jaydam,

I'll be using Young's Literal Translation (YLT) to give my input.

End of the Old Covenant Age - Mt 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(Eon)?' Where did the disciples get the idea that the age, their current age(Mt 24:14), will end? Jesus told them about it in an earlier conversation in Mt 13:36-43 and in vs.51 they all said they understood Jesus' words.

End of the Old Covenant Age - Mt 28:20 teaching them to observe all, whatever I did command you,) and lo, I am with you all the days -- till the full end of the age(Eon).' Same as above.

End of the Old Covenant Age - Heb 9:26 since it had behoved him many times to suffer from the foundation of the world, but now once, at the full end of the ages(Eons), for putting away of sin through his sacrifice, he hath been manifested; From Adam to Moses was an age, their may have been another one during this time, I'm not sure; From Moses to Christ is another, therefore, at least two ages are in view here as it relates to past ages during the author's vantage point.
Last edited by robbyyoung on Fri Jan 03, 2014 1:47 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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steve
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Re: When is the end of the age?

Post by steve » Fri Jan 03, 2014 1:10 pm

This is a difficult question, because I agree with Robby that at least some references to the end of the age refer to the end of the Mosaic Order (AD 70). However, I do believe that numerous "ages" are mentioned in scripture —e.g., Paul said that "the ends of the ages" had come upon his generation (1 Cor.10:11) and Hebrews 9:26 says that Jesus appeared at "the end of the ages." Nonetheless, Paul spoke of multiple ages yet to come (Eph.2:7; 3:21). Some of these ages no doubt have their respective "ends," so that a term like "the end of the age," may refer to different ages, in different contexts.

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jaydam
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Re: When is the end of the age?

Post by jaydam » Fri Jan 03, 2014 3:42 pm

Ok, so if I am following this right:

1. Mt 24 is referring to an age who's end dated 70 AD (I think the reasoning I've read on this is pretty sound)

2. Mt 13 is also referring to the same age (I haven't looked into this, but it seems Robby is equating the two)

3. Mt 28 would also be Christ referring to being with his 11 disciples as they carried out the great commission up to the end of the same age

Am I accurate in this understanding that the belief would be that all 3 passages are referring to the same age?

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Re: When is the end of the age?

Post by robbyyoung » Fri Jan 03, 2014 5:19 pm

jaydam wrote:Ok, so if I am following this right:

1. Mt 24 is referring to an age who's end dated 70 AD (I think the reasoning I've read on this is pretty sound)

2. Mt 13 is also referring to the same age (I haven't looked into this, but it seems Robby is equating the two)

3. Mt 28 would also be Christ referring to being with his 11 disciples as they carried out the great commission up to the end of the same age

Am I accurate in this understanding that the belief would be that all 3 passages are referring to the same age?
Hi Jaydam,

That is correct. All of these passages refer to the end of their current to past ages.

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Re: When is the end of the age?

Post by Roberto » Fri Jan 03, 2014 5:35 pm

steve wrote:This is a difficult question, because I agree with Robby that at least some references to the end of the age refer to the end of the Mosaic Order (AD 70). However, I do believe that numerous "ages" are mentioned in scripture —e.g., Paul said that "the ends of the ages" had come upon his generation (1 Cor.10:11) and Hebrews 9:26 says that Jesus appeared at "the end of the ages." Nonetheless, Paul spoke of multiple ages yet to come (Eph.2:7; 3:21). Some of these ages no doubt have their respective "ends," so that a term like "the end of the age," may refer to different ages, in different contexts.
Steve, do you think that there will be a "time" in which there are no more "ages"? Does this affect possible interpretations of the blasphemy of the Holy Spirit?

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jaydam
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Re: When is the end of the age?

Post by jaydam » Fri Jan 03, 2014 5:51 pm

robbyyoung wrote:
jaydam wrote:Hi Jaydam,

That is correct. All of these passages refer to the end of their current to past ages.
Thanks for your reply. If all 3 passages are referring to the same age, does this impact the idea with which some would apply the great commission today and Christ's promise to be with his disciples to the end of the age?

I'm not saying we do not have a job to do, or Christ is not with us per se, but the manner in which some hold the great commission may have been applicable to that age, and it has been fulfilled in the manner that Christ directed it to a certain group of disciples.

Maybe this doesn't make a lot of sense to some, but I hear much spoken about that we are still living under Christ's great commission as taken directly from Mt 28, and his promise to be with us to the end of the age, but it seems if the age he was referring to has ended, and his disciples fulfilled the commission, then we would not point to the commission from Mt 28 as "our" commission in this age.

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Re: When is the end of the age?

Post by robbyyoung » Fri Jan 03, 2014 8:01 pm

jaydam wrote: Thanks for your reply. If all 3 passages are referring to the same age, does this impact the idea with which some would apply the great commission today and Christ's promise to be with his disciples to the end of the age?
Hi Jaydam,

Matt 28:19-20 was directed to the Disciples in the context of the end of their current age. The end of that age ushered in "The Kingdom of Heaven", post 70 A.D.

Now notice what Jesus said in Mat 24:14 "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." This was one of the signs they were to look for concerning the Temple's destruction. The gospel of the Kingdom was preached in all the world (I won't get into the greek concerning this because I don't think its necessary at this point), see the following: Colossians 1:5-6, Colossians 1:23, Rom 10:18, Rom 16:26, Rom 1:8.

The Gospel of the Kingdom was preached during John the Baptist, Jesus and the Apostles. The Apostles were living out all those parables of Jesus concerning "The Kingdom of Heaven is like…", and ever since post 70 A.D. our lives are supposed to be lived in like manner.

I'll stop here :)

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Re: When is the end of the age?

Post by Paidion » Fri Jan 03, 2014 10:30 pm

I think all 4 references to "the end of the age" are about the same age, this present age, the Kingdom age in its infancy and growth:
Jesus' parables of the Kingdom are of the Kingdom of God at various stages:

1. Entering the Kingdom of God
Matt 13:44 Again, the kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field, which a man found and hid; and for joy over it he goes and sells all that he has and buys that field.

In the parable, when the man has discovered the treasure, he knows it is worth much more than ALL of his possesions. So he sells everything in order to buy that field and possess the treasure. When a person sees the supreme value of entering the Kingdom of God and being a subject of King Jesus, he will let go of all of his self-serving plans in order to be one of the subjects of the Kingdom.

2. The Growth of the Kingdom of God

Matt 13:31-33 Another parable He put forth to them, saying: "The kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed, which a man took and sowed in his field, which indeed is the least of all the seeds; but when it is grown it is greater than the herbs and becomes a tree, so that the birds of the air come and nest in its branches." Another parable He spoke to them: "The kingdom of heaven is like leaven, which a woman took and hid in three measures of meal till it was all leavened."

These parables seem to suggest that the Kingdom of God has a great growth. But in actuality over the centuries, the growth seems to have been quite gradual. Perhaps it will take a great spurt later. What do you think?

3. The Climax of the Kingdom of God.

Matt 13:36-43 Then Jesus sent the multitude away and went into the house. And His disciples came to Him, saying, "Explain to us the parable of the tares of the field."

He answered and said to them: "He who sows the good seed is the Son of Man.The field is the world, the good seeds are the sons of the kingdom, but the tares are the sons of the wicked one. The enemy who sowed them is the devil, the harvest is the end of the age, and the reapers are the angels. Therefore as the tares are gathered and burned in the fire, so it will be at the end of this age. The Son of Man will send out His angels, and they will gather out of His kingdom all things that offend, and those who practice lawlessness, and will cast them into the furnace of fire. There will be wailing and gnashing of teeth. Then the righteous will shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father. He who has ears to hear, let him hear!


So it seems that at the end of the age when Jesus returns, He will remove from His kingdom "all things that offend (or are a cause of stumbling). The lawless will be cast into the furnace of fire, and the righteous, in the Kingdom will shine forth as the sun. So I understand the age as ending when Jesus returns (in the future). When did the age begin?

Luke 16:16 "The law and the prophets were until John. Since that time the kingdom of God has been preached, and everyone is pressing into it.

So the age began when John the Baptizer began announcing the Kingdom. This was the beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ (Mark 1:1)

Jesus gives another parable to illustrate the climax of the Kingdom when the separation of the wicked from the righteous takes place. It teaches the same thing as the parable of the tares:

Matt. 13:47-50 "Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a dragnet that was cast into the sea and gathered some of every kind,which, when it was full, they drew to shore; and they sat down and gathered the good into vessels, but threw the bad away. So it will be at the end of the age. The angels will come forth, separate the wicked from among the just, and cast them into the furnace of fire. There will be wailing and gnashing of teeth."

I think the other two references to "the end of the age" in the New Testament, refer to exactly the same climax, when Jesus returns (still future:

Mt 24:3 Now as He sat on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to Him privately, saying, "Tell us, when will these things be? And what will be the sign of Your coming, and of the end of the age?"

I think the disciples are asking about two matters here. First, "When will these things be?" What things? The things Jesus had been predicting about the destruction of the temple. But there is a second matter. Jesus had been telling them about his second coming and about dividing the wicked from the righteous and assigning different destinies to each. So they ask, "And what will be the sign of Your coming, and of the end of the age?"

So my "preterism" with regards to Matthew 24 is limited to Christ's prediction of the destruction of the temple. I think the remainder of Matthew 24 is about the events leading up to His second coming.

The final scripture about "the end of the age" is within what is called, "The Great Commission" in which Christ promised to be with His disciples until "the end of the age," in other words, "until He comes again."

Matt 28:19,20 "Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age." Amen.
Paidion

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Homer
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Re: When is the end of the age?

Post by Homer » Fri Jan 03, 2014 11:04 pm

Paidion,

Very well stated and supported with the scriptures! :D

Homer

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