We Are Living in the End-Time Generation

When Jesus said, “This generation will by no means pass away till all these things are fulfilled”, was he pointing to or nodding at the disciples sitting around him?  No.  Jesus was speaking of the generation that would witness the climax at the end of man’s world, meaning the end of man’s rule over the earth under the influence of Satan.

Christ was not speaking of the generation of man alive at that time.  He was answering their question posed at the beginning of Matthew 24, “What shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world?”  (Matt. 24:3).

In response to this question Jesus gave the disciples a list of what would occur in the last days before his return.  The list starts with describing things that have occurred throughout history.  At the very top of the list is religious deception.  Religious deception has always plagued the earth since Adam and Eve rejected God’s government.  But from the day Christ had this conversation with his disciples, the deception became more focused than any time before.  The intense focus of the great deceiver was to create his own false christian religion, coming in the name of Christ and spawning false christs, false prophets and deceiving the whole world over which he ruled.  (Revelation 12:9)

It is instructive that at the top of the list of warnings was religious deception.  This very deception that is blinding mankind is the cause of wars, famines and disease epidemics.  If man had followed the teachings of Christ, mankind would not be experiencing the spread of these calamities to the point that if Christ did not intervene “no flesh would be saved” (Matt. 24:21-22).  It is the generation that is living at the time when mankind can destroy itself that Christ was referring to.  Not until a generation experienced nuclear warfare could any generation qualify as the end-time generation.

We are living in this end-time generation, and the time now is immediately before the events that lead to Christ’s return—this is the generation Christ described.  The sins of mankind are coming to their fullness in “this generation”.  We are living in a generation experiencing collapse of morality, unrestrained lust, all consuming greed, and perverse use of power.  All this is causing this end-time generation to “wax cold” (or you might say, to become discouraged, turned off and thus dropped out).  This explains the heavy use of all manner of drugs, including alcohol, in our world today.  The members of God’s church can be adversely affected by this depressing generation (Revelation 3:15-17).

Christ warns this generation that when we see the conditions described in Matthew 24, we should know that his return is “at the door” (verse 33).

Christ gave his people of “this generation” two prime directives that if followed would keep them ready for his return.  The first is stated in Matthew 24:42-43:

“Watch therefore: for you know not what hour your Lord doth come.  But know this, that if the good man 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.”

We are to be watching so that we see how the trends in the world are fulfilling what Christ prophesied.  We are not, however, to be watching in a manner that frustrates our lives.  That is, we are not to be looking for ways to solve the problems we see all around us today.  We aren’t to enter into vain efforts to prevent  what we know is coming, and we should be willing to accept this world’s grievous calamities as a part of the heavy punishment it is receiving for its overwhelming sins. Yet we can also sorrow over these things, and pray with real desire that God’s kingdom comes soon.

Secondly, we are to be doing God’s work right up to the time of Christ’s return (verses 44-46).

If we are watching, we will know that the “summer is nigh” (verse 32).  Therefore, it is imperative that we support God’s true ministers who are doing his work.  And it is ever more important that we are assembling together whenever and wherever possible with God’s ministers to support one-another in these perilous times.