Matthew 24:1-44

Dec 29, 2023

Matthew 24.1-44 English

Matthew 24.1-44 Greek

After posting the blog entry for Daniel 9:24-27, it became apparent (to me) that the destruction of Jerusalem was implicated at the end of Daniel’s seventieth week. So, I wanted to further investigate this idea, especially with regard to the viability of the Partial Preterist viewpoint (which may better reflect the meaning of this Matthew 24 passage compared with the futurist interpretation).

Please accept my apologies for the small font in the graphics. I have supplied two versions - one without the Greek, in order to facilitate a somwhat larger font.  At least either of these pdf files can be enlarged when viewed electronically.

If we skip the over-all synonymous parallelism of this passage that acts as a package of sorts for Jesus two replies, we can then focus on the chiastic structure formed by the disciples questions and Jesus’ reply.  In order to more readiy see the corresponding terms, I have color coded the three questions to match Jesus’ three answers that come in reverse order. Although we have three parallels, I still view this as an ABBA chiasm. This is because I think we can see how the latter half of the disciples questioning requires ellipsis to make it clear their are two questions. Thus, when they ask, “Tell us, when will this be, and what will be the sign of your coming and of the end of the age?” We can supply the ellipsis (italics) such that the three questions are apparent: When will these things be? What will be the sign of your coming? What will be the sign of the end of the age? 

Our Lord is well organized in his approach to answering the disciples questions. He splits his first reply into two parts: false signs contrasted with the true prophetic sign of the end - that which was spoken by the Prophet Daniel. Please note that both parts of Jeus replies come similarly in chiastic form with a “dangling” chiastic structure conclusions. I ran out of alpha-numeric symbols. And so resorted to use of asterisks to mark time progressions, a long >< to show where the discourse marker “οὐν” (so, therefore) occurs. There are also dashes (-) used at vs 34-35 to show a probable parallel. While on the subject, the reader will have to distingish between an x marking the middle of a chiastic structure (e.g., vs 11, 25) and the same x  intended to match up with y & z at several points within the over-all structure (cf, 17-19, 31, 40-41). These latter observations tie in the location of the elect (men in the field or women at the house) with the angelic directional references.

The following harmony of the synoptic gospels may be helpful in that it provides a breakdown of sorts, showing the various parts of the discourse. Although we should be sure to understand Matthew on his own terms, Luke’s presentation is, at times, very instructive. The colored blocks represent the main sections of Jesus reply while the yellow block encompasses the entire structure.