Matthew Chapter 24
Verse 44 “Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh.”
What “coming” is Jesus referring to here?
It is when he comes to get the last members to complete the Church for the marriage. In other words, this “coming” IS NOT in reference to the parousia (the Second Advent) itself, but rather the rapture (the translation).
Incidentally, when the parousia began, it was not understood as a subject—not until several years later, the Lord HAVING COME found a faithful and wise servant. The precise hour that the parousia began is not as important as the fact of Jesus’ arrival. The same priority was demonstrated at the First Advent. At that time, for one to be used by the Lord, it was important for him to identify Jesus as the Messiah (to known that he had come), but it was not as important to know the hour of Jesus’ birth or even the hour of his baptism at Jordan.
The word “cometh” is (Strong’s # 2064) erchomai meaning: to come, go (not parousia Strong’s # 3952 meaning: presence). There is only one Second Presence but several “comings.” Jesus comes on a white horse, with a chain in his hand, seated, standing, etc. He comes to break into Satan’s house; he stands at the door knocking, and etc.
All of these activities are different aspects of the Second Advent (or Parousia of our Lord). Similarly at the First Advent, there were various “comings”: Jesus came at his birth; he came at Jordan as Messiah the Prince (Dan. 9:25); he came as a king meek and lowly, riding upon the foal of an ass (his entry into Jerusalem at the end of his ministry); etc. Hence a number of prophecies pertain to different events occurring during the First Advent. So likewise various events are also prophesied regarding the Second Advent, and they cannot be distorted or bent to all begin in 1874—any more than all the events of the First Advent could be forced to a fulfillment in one year. In other words, the parousia has various “comings.” In Verse 44 Jesus comes to take his Bride (to steal her as a thief), comes to gather the last of the wise virgins in completion of the Church.
The “coming” in Verses 37–39 is in regards to the parousia, which is different from the “coming” of Verse 44.
“But as the days of Noah were, so shall also the presence of the Son of man be. For as in the days that were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noe entered into the ark, And knew not until the flood came, and took them all away; so shall also the presence of the Son of man be” (Matt. 24:37–39).
There is a distinction between “days” (plural) and “the day” (singular).
The days before the Flood were the 120 years that Noah was building the Ark. When the Flood came, Noah was 600 years old—600 full years (Gen. 7:6, 11). Thus Noah was 480 years old when God instructed him to start the Ark (600 – 120 = 480). God told Noah that He would tolerate man’s evil and corruption for yet 120 years and then He would terminate the situation. For the next 120 years Noah actively preached righteousness and prophesied of the coming Flood, that is, from his 480th year to his 600th year.
Genesis 5:32 says that Noah was 500 years old when Shem, Ham, and Japheth were born. In other words, the three sons were not born until after God had given the pronouncement to Noah regarding the Flood coming in 120 years, and Noah started to build the Ark before his three sons were born. Thus they grew up under the influence of Noah’s preaching of righteousness, and the plans for building the Ark were given solely to Noah. As his three sons grew up, they participated in the construction. Noah needed their help to lift the heavy beams into place, but first, a number of years were required to gather the lumber, dress it, prepare it, provide the tar, etc. Just as stones for the Temple were quarried in advance of the assembly, so the trees for the Ark were probably all cut and prepared first. The three sons came along at the right time to assist Noah in assembling the parts for the Ark.
Even with the help of his three sons the building of the Ark would prove a near impossible feat for four men alone to accomplish. The Ark was 540 feet long, 90 feet wide and 54 feet high, and had three deck floors (Gen 6:15,16). “A simple engineering calculation shows that the Ark may well have required some 6000 tons of timber in its building, requiring the felling and dressing of a veritable forest of giant trees.”
“The work must have taken a good many years and must have employed hundreds of workers. There cannot be much doubt that Noah must have been a man of wealth and power to have had the material means to plan and execute so stupendous a project. The ancient legends depict him as King of his country and there is nothing impossible about that. Suffice it that he was a man of faith, he believed God and acted out that belief in carrying out a command that must have seemed utterly fantastic to all who heard it.” (Excerpts taken from, “The Biblical Flood, A Scientific Confirmation”)
Comment: The fact that the plans for building the Ark were given only to Noah and before his sons were born fits the antitype of Jesus’ having been given the scroll before the Church was legally recognized and developed.
The sons were schooled in righteousness and in selecting upright wives. Noah, his sons, and the wives were all “perfectly generated”; that is, they were of pure Adamic stock. Thus there was a screening or Divine Providence with regard to the selection of their wives. With the fallen angels taking wives of their own choosing, violence filling the earth, and the giant hybrid race domineering over the human race, the inference is that in connection with preparing the Ark, a shield of protection surrounded that area. Noah and family were in the circle of God’s providence. On their own they would have been no match for any fallen angel, so we know that an “iron curtain” protected them from being unduly disturbed. Nevertheless, Noah could hear through that curtain the jeers of those who made fun of him. Any fallen angels or their hybrid progeny who wanted to harm Noah and family were thwarted in their efforts. Other examples are Job and Israel, who had a “hedge” around them (Job 1:10; Isa. 5:5). With Job, Satan said sarcastically, “Just let me do a little here and there, and I will show you how good Job is!” In Noah’s case there was noninterference all the way through.
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