Verse of the Day Devotion: Matthew 24:36
“But concerning that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but the Father only.” – Matthew 24:36
This verse is part of what is known as the Olivet Discourse. It is called this because it is an extended teaching by Jesus given on the Mount of Olives. The basic subject is the end times and the return of Jesus Christ. He started this by giving signs that will occur when the end of the age is imminent. These include but are not limited to an increase in false prophets, famines, earthquakes, and lawlessness. Next, He speaks of the Abomination of Desolations spoken of by the prophet Daniel who will wreak havoc and bring great tribulation. “For then there will be great tribulation, such as has not been from the beginning of the world until now, no, and never will be. And if those days had not been cut short, no human being would be saved. But for the sake of the elect those days will be cut short.” Matthew 24:21-22.
And immediately after this period, the Son of Man, the Christ, will return. “Immediately after the tribulation of those days the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light, and the stars will fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken. Then will appear in heaven the sign of the Son of Man, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. And he will send out his angels with a loud trumpet call, and they will gather his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.” Matthew 24:29-31. What a great time this will be for Christians.
Then we come to our focus verse. “But concerning that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but the Father only.” Matthew 24:36. The exact time of His coming is not clear. However, the general signs are given so that we know it is close. He uses the fig tree as an example of what He means. “From the fig tree learn its lesson: as soon as its branch becomes tender and puts out its leaves, you know that summer is near. So also, when you see all these things, you know that he is near, at the very gates.” Matthew 24:32-33.
Now we come to our focus verse. “But concerning that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but the Father only.” Matthew 24:36. There is no indication of exactly when His return will be. Only the Father knows. However, what we do know is it will happen. So it is important that we live our lives accordingly. We should not live in a casual Christian manner, one that is not deeply committed to Christ, figuring we will change as the time draws closer. “For as were the days of Noah, so will be the coming of the Son of Man. For as in those days before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying, and giving in marriage, until the day when Noah entered the ark, and they were unaware until the flood came and swept them all away, so will be the coming of the Son of Man.” Matthew 24:38-29. They lived their lives as they wanted, figuring all would be well, even though they were told by Noah what was coming. However, the flood came, and it was too late, for the doors were shut, They figured when the rain began, they would enter the ark at that time. It did not go well with them, and it will not go well for those who wait until the day of His coming to get serious.
It is important that, as Christians, we live our lives in a manner that is pleasing to God, and one where we are totally committed to Him. We do not know when He will come back, or if we will die prior to that day. Therefore, it is imperative that we be serious about our Christian walk, not living our life as we please that is opposed to His will. We do not want to hear the words spoken to the rich man who built additional barns to store His harvest. The context is slightly different, but the meaning is clear. “But God said to him, ‘Fool! This night your soul is required of you.” Luke 12:20a.
William Funkhouser MDiv, ThD, Founder and President of True Devotion Ministries, Inc.