Ver. 1. And as he went out of the temple,.... The Ethiopic version reads, "as they went out"; Christ and his disciples: for when Christ went out of the temple, the disciples went out with him; or at least very quickly followed him, and came to him, as appears from what follows; though the true reading is, "as he went out": and the Syriac and Persic versions are more express, and read, "as Jesus went out": for having done all he intended to do there, he left it, never more to return to it:
one of his disciples: it may be Peter, who was generally pretty forward, and commonly the mouth of the rest, as this disciple was, whoever he was: the Persic version reads, "the disciples"; and Matthew and Luke represent them in general, as observing to Christ, the beauty and grandeur of the temple, as this disciple did: who
saith unto him, Master, see what manner of stones and what buildings [are here]. The temple, as repaired by Herod, was a very beautiful building, according to the account the Jews give of it, and its stones were of a very great magnitude; See Gill on "Mt 24:1".
Ver. 2. And Jesus answering said unto him,.... The Persic version reads, "unto them"; and so Beza's most ancient copy but as that question is put by one, the reply is made to him:
seest thou these great buildings? how beautiful and strong they are. The Vulgate Latin and Ethiopic versions, add the word all; and the sense is, dost thou take a survey of all these buildings, and of the whole of this stately edifice? and dost thou not admire the strength and grandeur of them? and dost thou not think they will be of long duration, and that the demolition of them is scarcely possible?
There shall not be left one stone upon another. The Syriac and Arabic versions add, "here": as in Mt 24:9, and so it is read in four of Beza's copies, and in others:
that shall not be thrown down; See Gill on "Mt 24:2".
Ver. 3. And as he sat upon the Mount of Olives,.... On the east of Jerusalem:
over against the temple: where he could have a full view of it; the eastern wall of the temple being lower than the rest;
See Gill on "Mt 24:3".
Peter, and John, and James, and Andrew, asked him privately; apart from the rest of the disciples, they being, especially the first three, his favourites, and very familiar with him.
Ver. 4. Tell us when shall these things be?.... When the temple will be destroyed, and these fine buildings shall be demolished, and not one of these large stones shall be left upon another:
and what shall be the sign when all these things [shall be] fulfilled? And what is the sign of his coming, and of the end of the world, as Matthew relates; See Gill on "Mt 24:3".
Ver. 5. And Jesus answering them,.... His four disciples, Peter, John, James, and Andrew: "began to say"; or "said", a way of speaking frequent with this evangelist:
take heed lest any man deceive you; See Gill on "Mt 24:4".
Ver. 6. For many shall come in my name,.... Taking upon them the name of the Messiah: saying,
I am [Christ]; the word "Christ", is rightly supplied from
Mt 24:5; otherwise in the original it is only, "I am"; which the Persic version doubles, reading it, "I am indeed, I am": he that was promised and expected, the true Messiah; he that was to come:
and shall deceive many; See Gill on "Mt 24:5".
Ver. 7. And when ye shall hear of wars, and rumours of wars,.... Among the Jews themselves, and with the Romans:
be not troubled; keep your place, abide by your work, go on preaching the Gospel, without distressing yourselves about the event of things:
for [such things] must needs be: being decreed by God, foretold by Christ, and made necessary by the sins of the people:
but the end shall not be yet; of the temple, of Jerusalem, and of the Jewish state and nation; See Gill on "Mt 24:6".
Ver. 8. For nation shall rise against nation,.... The nations of the world one against another, and the Romans against the Jews, and the Jews against them:
and kingdom against kingdom; which is a synonymous phrase with the former, and what the Jews call, twnwv twlm, "different words", expressing the same thing, often used in their commentaries:
and there shall be earthquakes in divers places; of the world:
and there shall be famines: especially in Judea, as in the times of Claudius Caesar, and at the siege of Jerusalem:
and troubles; public ones of various sorts, as tumults, seditions, murders, &c.; This word is omitted in the Vulgate Latin, and Ethiopic versions.
These are the beginnings of sorrows; as of a woman with child, as the word signifies; whose pains before, though they are the beginnings and pledges of what shall come after, are not to be compared with those that immediately precede, and attend the birth of the child: and so all those troubles, which should be some time before the destruction of Jerusalem, would be but small, but light afflictions, the beginning of sorrows, in comparison of what should immediately go before, and attend that desolation;
See Gill on "Mt 24:7",
See Gill on "Mt 24:8".
Ver. 9. But take heed to yourselves,.... This does not so much regard their doctrine and conversation, they were to take heed to; in which sense this phrase is sometimes used; but the security of their persons and lives; and the advice is, to take care of them selves, as much as in them lay, how they came into the hands of the persecuting Jews, and exposed themselves to danger, when at any time it could be avoided:
for they shall deliver you up to councils; their greater and lesser sanhedrim; the one consisting of seventy one persons, the other of twenty three, and the least of three only; and before the greater of these, Peter and John were brought, quickly, after the ascension of Christ:
and in the synagogues ye shall be beaten; with forty stripes, save one, as the Apostle Paul was, five, times:
and ye shall be brought before rulers; governors of Roman provinces, as the same apostle was, before Gallio, Festus, and Felix:
and kings for my sake; for the sake of professing Christ, and preaching his Gospel; as some of the apostles were, before Herod, Agrippa, Nero, Domitian, and others:
for a testimony against them: both against the rulers and kings before whom they should be brought, and bear a testimony for Christ, and against the Jews, who should bring them thither;
See Gill on "Mt 10:17",
See Gill on "Mt 10:18".
Ver. 10. And the Gospel must first be published among all nations. The Syriac version reads, "my Gospel"; the Gospel which Christ was the author, subject, and preacher of; this "must be published". There was a necessity of the promulgation of it by the will of God, the command and commission of Christ; and for the gathering in of the Jews, that were the elect of God, "among all nations" of the world, especially in the Roman empire; and that "first", or before the destruction of Jerusalem; See Gill on "Mt 24:14".
Ver. 11. But when they shall lead you, and deliver you up,.... Lead to councils and courts of judicature, and deliver up to kings and rulers, to the civil magistrate, to be punished by the secular arm:
take no thought before hand; be not previously anxious, and carefully solicitous, in a distressing way:
what ye shall speak: to kings and rulers, by way of apology for yourselves, and your own innocence, and in defence of the Gospel:
neither do ye premeditate; or "meditate", as the generality of copies read: Beza says in one copy it is read, "premeditate": and so in one of Stephens's, as we render it: this clause is omitted in the Vulgate Latin, Arabic, and Ethiopic versions:
but whatsoever shall be given you in that hour; whatever shall be immediately suggested to your thoughts, be put into your minds, and laid upon your hearts:
that speak ye; freely and boldly without the fear of men:
for it is not ye that speak, but the Holy Ghost: not but that they did speak, but they were not the principal authors, either of the matter they spoke, or of the words and language in which they spoke; they were only the instruments of the Holy Ghost; they spoke as they were moved by him: hence their wisdom and eloquence in their self-defence, were amazing, and their arguments strong and unanswerable; See Gill on "Mt 10:19",
See Gill on "Mt 10:20",
Ver. 12. Now the brother shall betray the brother to death,.... Signifying, that such should be the rage of men, particularly the Jews, against Christ and his Gospel, that those that were in the nearest relation, were of the same flesh and blood, children of the same parents, should betray and deliver up each other into the hands of the civil magistrate, in order to be put to death:
and the father the son; and children shall rise up against their parents, and shall cause them to be put to death; things unnatural and shocking; See Gill on "Mt 10:21".
Ver. 13. And ye shall be hated of all men,.... Not only of your friends and relations of your countrymen the Jews; but of all men, the generality of men, in, all nations of the world, wherever they came:
for my name's sake; for the sake of Christ and his Gospel, they professed and preached:
but he that shall endure; reproaches, afflictions, and persecutions, patiently; or persevere in the faith of Christ, in the profession of his name, and in preaching his Gospel:
to the end; of such troubles, and of life:
the same shall be saved; if not with a temporal, yet with an everlasting salvation; See Gill on "Mt 10:22",
See Gill on "Mt 24:13".
Ver. 14. But when ye shall see the abomination of desolation,.... The Roman army encompassing Jerusalem, which was an abomination to the Jews, and an "impure sign" of their destruction, as the Syriac and Persic versions render it; and a desolating one to their nation, city, and temple:
spoken of by Daniel the prophet, in Da 9:27. This clause is omitted in the Vulgate Latin, and was not found by Beza, in two of his copies, and is thought to be transcribed from Matthew:
standing where it ought not; round about the city, in the midst of it, and even in the temple: in one of Beza's exemplars it is added, "in the holy place", as in Matthew; and so it is read in the Ethiopic version:
let him that readeth understand; either the passage in Daniel, or the citation of it by the evangelist, when he shall see this come to pass: this seems to be rather the words of the evangelist, than of Christ; since this was not written (and so not to be read), but spoken by Christ; and since his usual phrase was, "he that hath ears, let him hear": though indeed the same exhortation is in Matthew, and may be understood of Christ, as it may refer to the written prophecy in Daniel, and indeed to the Gospel, which might be read before this event came to pass: See Gill on "Mt 24:15".
Then let them that be in Judea flee to the mountains; they that are in Jerusalem, or in any of the cities and towns of Judea, let them make their escape, as soon as possible, to the mountainous parts of the country; where they may be more safe from, the devastations of the Roman army; See Gill on "Mt 24:16".
Ver. 15. And let him that is on the house top,.... On the battlements of the house, either for diversion or devotion:
not go down into the house; in the inner way by the stairs, or ladder within doors:
neither enter therein; being come down from the top of the house, by stairs, or a ladder without, which was usual:
to take any thing out of his house; to take care of his goods, or take any thing along with him, that might be useful in his flight, and journey, and stay abroad; See Gill on "Mt 24:17".
Ver. 16. And let him that is in the field,.... At work, in any sort of business there,
not turn back again: either to his own house, or rather to that part of the field where he laid down his clothes:
for to take up his garment; but let him flee without it, or otherwise he would be in great danger; See Gill on "Mt 24:18".
Ver. 17. But woe to them that are with child,.... Who because of their burdens, would be very unfit for, and very incapable of fleeing with any haste; and therefore very liable to fall into the hands of the enemy, and become their prey:
and to them that give suck in those days; who could not bear to leave their children behind, and yet would not be able to carry them with them; at least not without great trouble, and which would much retard their flight, and endanger their being taken by the enemy;
See Gill on "Mt 24:19".
Ver. 18. And pray ye that your flight be not in winter. When days are short, roads bad, the weather inclement; and when to lodge in mountains, is very incommodious, and uncomfortable. The Persic version adds, "neither on the sabbath day"; See Gill on "Mt 24:20".
Ver. 19. For in those days shall be affliction,.... What with the close siege of the Romans; the fury of the zealots, and seditious; the rage of different parties among the Jews themselves; the ravage of the sword, both within and without, together with dreadful plagues and famines:
such as was not from the beginning of the creation, which God created, unto this time, neither shall be; of which there never was the like in any age, and cannot be paralleled in any history, since the beginning of time, or the world was made, or any thing in it, down to that period; nor ever will the like befall any one particular nation under the heavens, to the end of the world;
See Gill on "Mt 24:21".