How Close Are We To The Second Coming?
by Sandy Simpson, 5/27/13

Matt. 24:34  I tell you the truth, this generation will certainly not pass away until all these things have happened.

This verse from Jesus' famous exposition on the destruction of the temple and what would happen to precede the end times and His return has intrigued many through the generations.  But it is not until this generation that it's meaning has become clearer.

There are those within the Preterist adherents and movements who say that the above verse was necessarily fulfilled in 70 AD when the temple was destroyed by the Romans.  (See Has Bible Prophecy Already Been Fulfilled? by Thomas Ice, 5/27/13)  But the problem with this view is that a number of the things the Lord spoke of have yet to be fulfilled.  So the view that what John was given in Revelation has all been fulfilled is, at least, unbiblical if not heretical.  It denies promises made to Israel throughout the Bible, many specific promises that remain for Israel and cannot be co-opted for the Gentile Church.  Jesus Christ will certainly return to sit on the throne of David to rule and reign over the world for a thousand years (Rev. 20).  The disciples were not just asking about the destruction of the second temple but also about the end of the age.

Matt. 24:1-3   Jesus left the temple and was walking away when his disciples came up to him to call his attention to its buildings. "Do you see all these things?" he asked. "I tell you the truth, not one stone here will be left on another; every one will be thrown down." As Jesus was sitting on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to him privately. "Tell us," they said, "when will this happen, and what will be the sign of your coming and of the end of the age?"
So it is in that context, after Jesus explained what must happen, that he made the statement about "this generation will certainly not pass away until all these things have happened".  Jesus could not have been addressing His current generation of which the disciples were a part because, for one thing, He would not return within that generation.

So the question remains: what generation was He talking about?  Fortunately He left us a clue in his explanation.

Matt. 24:32-34  "Now learn this lesson from the fig-tree: As soon as its twigs get tender and its leaves come out, you know that summer is near. Even so, when you see all these things, you know that it is near, right at the door. I tell you the truth, this generation will certainly not pass away until all these things have happened.
Every Bible commentator worth their salt agrees that Matt. 24:32 redarding the fig tree is talking about Israel.  Israel became a nation again in May 14, 1948 after being dispersed.  So it is reasonable to assume that the generation that saw the fig tree's "twigs get tender and its leaves come out" will know that the second coming of Christ "is near, right at the door."  Jesus was likely addressing the "baby boom" generation of which I am a part.  Those born in 1948 would be 64 years old as of the writing of this article.  A generation is roughly said to last around 70 years, though in modern times people are living longer than in the time of Christ.

Therefore this "baby boom" generation is likely to see the things that have yet to be fulfilled from Matt. 24 come to pass.  It seems that many of the things Jesus talked about have already happened but now we are waiting for the third temple to be built, thereby giving the antichrist his platform to claim he is god.  In my estimation this could happen anytime.

Re 22:20  He who testifies to these things says, "Yes, I am coming soon." Amen. Come, Lord Jesus.