Saturday, October 17th, 2009
"What will be the sign of your presence and of the conclusion of the system of things?" (Matthew 24:3)
Nearly two thousand years ago, in a private conversation with their Master on the Mount of Olives, four of Jesus’ apostles asked the above. In that question, the apostles used two very interesting expressions, “your presence” and “the conclusion of the system of things.” To what do those expressions refer? The term “the conclusion of the system of things” refers to the period of time leading up to and including its end. Christ’s pa‧rou‧si′a, or presence, started with Jesus’ installation as King in heaven in 1914 and continues on to include the “great tribulation,” during which he comes to destroy the wicked. (Matthew 24:21) It could be said that the period constituting “the conclusion of the system of things” corresponds to or runs parallel with the period called Christ’s presence.
(Watchtower issue: 02/15/08, 5:1-3)
*I wanted to mention one really good point that was brought out in a talk on this subject. It was so simple that I can't believe I hadn't thought of mentioning it more often when people have questions about Jesus' invisible presence.
Most everyone is familiar with the four horsemen of the Apocalypse in the book of Revelation, (even people who don't know much else about the Bible). Well to show a person another indication of why we know that Christ was installed as King and his presence has already begun, is to point out that the conquering rider on the white horse (Jesus) began his ride first. The horsemen on the white horse proceeds the 3 other horsemen that represent War, Famine, and Pestilence/Death -who follow closely behind. (Revelation 6:1-8) And of course the dramatic explosion of war, food shortages, and deadly plague that have occured since that turning point in 1914 when WWI began, and have continued increasing in intensity on a global scale during the years that followed, gives us a visible indication of where we're at in the stream of time.