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How are we to understand Jesus'statement here? Has this event occurred as stated? Did Jesus err in his prediction about the establishment of the Messianic Kingdom?

Matthew 16:28 ASV Verily I say unto you, There are some of them that stand here, who shall in no wise taste of death, till they see the Son of man coming in his kingdom.

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    Most see this as fulfilled in the next few verses.
    – Dottard
    Aug 17 at 9:38
  • @Dottard. Care to elaborate and turn your comment to an answer? Aug 17 at 9:50
  • Note that the only place that "Kingdom of Christ" occurs is in Eph 5:5. The phrase does not occur in Matt 16:28. The only pertinent phrase in Matt 16:28 is "his kingdom".
    – Dottard
    Aug 17 at 21:49
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    By "Messianic Kingdom", do you mean "The Kingdom of Heaven" or alternately "The Kingdom of God" that Jesus was preaching about? Because that's the standard reading of this verse, whereas "Messianic Kingdom" is more of a doctrinal reading by those who believe there will be 1000 year reign of Christ, which is a contentious claim that has to do with Revelation 20.2 and not Matt 16.28
    – Robert
    Aug 20 at 2:47
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    Does this answer your question? "Until they see the kingdom of God" in Luke 9:27 and parallels search thoroughly before posting. The end times began marked the coming of Christ in power in his kingdom. The New Church is his eternal Kingdom. Read this obinfonet.ro/docs/tyndale/tyndrex/la/luke-acts-theo-bock.pdf
    – Michael16
    Aug 25 at 13:22

7 Answers 7

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The best understanding of this prophecy, in my opinion, is of an event that occurred 6 days later.

And he said unto them, Verily I say unto you, That there be some of those that stand here, who shall not taste of death, till they have seen the kingdom of God come with power. And after six days, Jesus took with him Peter, James, and John, and led them up into a high mountain apart by themselves: and he was transfigured before them. (Mark 9:1-2)

You asked how this was so. My answer is that Jesus's appearance on the mountain is how He will appear in glory.

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  • Ajuduah. If as Jesus said "“Everyone knows what I teach. I have preached regularly in the synagogues and the Temple, where the people gather. I have not spoken in secret. John 18:20, his prediction/assurance recorded in Matthew 16:28 should then be plain. How then can the transfiguration mean the establishment of the kingdom of the Christ seem like a private event witnessed by only three? That sounds different from "everyone knows" John 18:20 Aug 17 at 17:37
  • @AlexBalilo It was prophesied that SOME would not taste death before seeing the kingdom. And some did. And we must remember that it was not a secret for long. Aug 18 at 0:17
  • Matthew 16 :28 is a prophecy of Jesus, not by "SOME". Aug 18 at 1:12
  • @AlexBalilo And you're forgetting the content of His prophecy. SOME would not taste death before seeing the kingdom. Aug 18 at 1:36
  • Ajuduah. I see. I erred reading your comment "that SOME". It's not "by SOME". Aug 18 at 1:44
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These are the common (not all) interpretations of Jesus' prophecy in Matt 16:28 about some still being alive when they see the Son of Man coming in His kingdom.

  1. It was fulfilled in the Transfiguration, six days later as recorded in Matt 17. For example, Ellicott records (but does not agree with) this:

(28) There be some standing here, which shall not taste of death . . .—The immediate sequence of the vision of the Son of Man transfigured from the low estate in which He then lived and moved, into the “excellent glory” which met the gaze of the three disciples, has led not a few interpreters to see in that vision the fulfilment of this prediction.

  1. It was fulfilled at the (Death and?) Resurrection of Christ which inaugurated the kingdom of God on earth. As evidence, people quote Jesus' final instructions to the disciples in Matt 28:18-20, etc. Further evidence of this was provided at Pentecost as recorded in Acts 2.

Note the comments of Barnes:

Son of man coming in his kingdom - Mark and Luke have explained this: Mark 9:1, "Until they have seen the kingdom of God come with power;" Luke 9:27, "Till they see the kingdom of God." The meaning evidently is, "till they shall see my kingdom," i. e., my church, now small, feeble, and despised, greatly enlarged, established, and spreading with great rapidity and extent. All this was accomplished. All these apostles, except Judas, lived to see the wonders of the day of Pentecost; some of them, John particularly, saw the Jewish nation scattered, the temple destroyed, the gospel established in Asia, Rome, Greece, and in a large part of the known world.

  1. It was fulfilled at the destruction of Jerusalem in AD 70. (I personally cannot see the relevance of this because all it did was terminate the Jewish state as a political entity; but I list it for completeness. See the Cambridge commentary.)

  2. It was not fulfilled and thus, is a failed prophecy.

Large books by many scholars have been written in favor of each of these positions (and a few others) which I do not intend to canvas here.

For what it is worth, I suggest that the simplest solution is to see a combination of #1 and #2 above as the fulfilment of Jesus prophecy. That is, the Transfiguration (Matt 17) anticipated the events surrounding and following Jesus' resurrection as initiating the kingdom of God on earth.

I give the final comment to Matthew Poole:

But the most generally received opinion, and which seemeth to be best, is, that the coming of the Son of man here meant is, his resurrection from the dead. His ascension into heaven, and sending the Holy Spirit, after which the kingdom of grace came with a mighty power, subduing all nations to the Lord Jesus Christ. He was declared, (or determined), to be the Son of God with power, according to the spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead, Romans 1:4. And when, after his resurrection from the dead, they asked him, Acts 1:6, whether he would at that time restore the kingdom to Israel, he puts them off, and tells them for an answer, Acts 1:8, But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost parts of the earth. And then, Acts 1:9, he in their sight ascended up into heaven. Then did the kingdom of the Son of man come with power, Acts 2:33-36, they knowing assuredly that the Son of man, whom the Jews had crucified, was made both Lord and Christ, as Acts 2:36, and, as Acts 2:34,35, set at God’s right hand, (according to the prophecy of David, Psalm 90:1), until his enemies should be made his footstool.

Lstly, as to whether the "Kingdom of God" is established or not, we observe two things:

  1. According to Eph 5:5, the kingdom of God is also the kingdom of Christ.
  2. The kingdom of God has already been established according to the following:
  • Luke 17:20, 21 - When asked by the Pharisees when the kingdom of God would come, Jesus replied, “The kingdom of God will not come with observable signs. 21Nor will people say, ‘Look, here it is,’ or ‘There it is.’ For you see, the kingdom of God is in your midst.”
  • Matt 12:28 - But if I drive out demons by the Spirit of God, then the kingdom of God has come upon you.
  • Luke 9:27 - But I tell you truthfully, some who are standing here will not taste death before they see the kingdom of God.”
  • Luke 10:9 - Heal the sick who are there and tell them, ‘The kingdom of God is near you.’

This is a classic case of the kingdom of God existing in the now and not yet - while we exist as citizens of the kingdom of God, we still await the glorious return of Jesus.

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  • Was the transfiguration the same as the restoration of the Messiah's kingdom, seen only by three? Aug 17 at 11:37
  • @AlexBalilo - "restoration" is not mentioned in the prophecy and so is not germane. Further, Jesus did not say that it would be seen by everyone (this places words in Jesus' mouth!); all He said was that it would be seen by some standing with Him at the time.
    – Dottard
    Aug 17 at 21:11
  • If, as Jesus said "“Everyone knows what I teach. I have preached regularly in the synagogues and the Temple, where the people gather. I have not spoken in secret. John 18:20, his prediction/assurance recorded in Matthew 16:28 should then be plain. How then can the transfiguration mean the establishment of the kingdom of the Christ? witnessed by only three? That sounds different from "everyone knows". If the kingdom of the Christ is already established, using Luke 17:20-21 to support that observation, why did Jesus said what he said in Mat 16:28 (till they see) Aug 18 at 0:34
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What is meant by "Son of man coming in his Kingdom"

Matthew is known as the "kingdom" gospel, since βασιλεία ("kingdom") appears 56 times in Matthew, about 35% of all appearances in the NT. I can't outline all the usages here, but we can summarize them as follows:

  • Referencing the nations: Matt 4.8, 24.7
  • Kingdom of Satan: Matthew 12.26
  • Abstract Kingdom: Matthew 12.25 "How shall one kingdom stand against itself"

The remaining 52 references are to the Kingdom of God/Heaven, which is a major theme of Mathew, and this includes the reference in 16.28 to the "kingdom of the Son of man", as can be seen from the following:

  • For so an entrance shall be ministered unto you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. 2 Peter 1:11 KJV

  • And the seventh angel sounded; and there were great voices in heaven, saying, The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ; and he shall reign for ever and ever. Revelation 11:15 KJV (A description of the elevation of Christ)

  • Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son. Colossians 1:13 KJV

  • I charge thee therefore before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the quick and the dead at his appearing and his kingdom; 2 Timothy 4:1 KJV

"Son of man" is a hebraicism that refers to group membership - has the nature of a man - and so is a reference to Christ after the incarnation, and it can refer to "Son of man" during his earthly ministry or after he has been elevated (after his resurrection and ascension to Heaven) as per Colossians 1.18-19. After this elevation, all authority was given to him (See the quote from Rev 11.15), and we start reading of "Kingdom of Christ" or "Kingdom of the Son", whereas before, it was only "Kingdom of Heaven/God".

This elevation refers to the Father putting all things except himself under the Son after his death on the cross:

Matthew 28:18 (KJV 1900)

And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.

And again:

1 Corinthians 15:27–28 (KJV 1900)

For he hath put all things under his feet. But when he saith, all things are put under him, it is manifest that he is excepted, which did put all things under him. And when all things shall be subdued unto him, then shall the Son also himself be subject unto him that put all things under him, that God may be all in all.

So there is a three step process being described:

  1. (Time of the Gospels) Christ humbles himself, takes on the form of a man, and performs his earthly ministry with no power of his own except whatever the Father gives him. Here he preaches that the "kingdom of Heaven" or "the Kingdom of God" is near. It is attainable. The Kingdom of God always existed, but on earth it was kept behind veils and accessible only to the high priest. Now it has come near. He is obedient unto death of the cross.

  2. (We are here). The Father sees this obedience, and elevates Christ, putting him at the head of his Kingdom. It is now the Kingdom of his dear Son - the Kingdom of the Son of man. This happens when Christ ascends to Heaven. It remains the Kingdom of the Son until his return. Christ is reigning right now.

  3. (End of the old World) Christ returns in power at the end of the world, creation is destroyed and the fallen flesh/enemies of God burn while rewards are given to the faithful. Christ is then subject to the Father, so that "God is all in all" and there will be a new heaven and a new earth.

Kingdom of Heaven

Therefore the Kingdom of the Son of man is just the Kingdom of God and is not something that is "established" as it exists whenever God exists, but rather is something that the Son receives as a reward for his obedience and exists now. But how can Christ be reigning over the Kingdom of God (which itself reigns over all earthly kingdoms - Romans 13.1-2) if the world is so messed up and there are so many forces that appear to oppose him, and even our own flesh opposes the spirit?

That is exactly what Jesus' parables were about.

Let's look at two parables:

The Enemy Sower

Matthew 13:36–43 (KJV 1900)

36 Then Jesus sent the multitude away, and went into the house: and his disciples came unto him, saying, Declare unto us the parable of the tares of the field. 37 He answered and said unto them, He that soweth the good seed is the Son of man; 38 The field is the world; the good seed are the children of the kingdom; but the tares are the children of the wicked one; 39 The enemy that sowed them is the devil; the harvest is the end of the world; and the reapers are the angels. 40 As therefore the tares are gathered and burned in the fire; so shall it be in the end of this world. 41 The Son of man shall send forth his angels, and they shall gather out of his kingdom all things that offend, and them which do iniquity; 42 And shall cast them into a furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth. 43 Then shall the righteous shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father. Who hath ears to hear, let him hear.

Notice that it says "the Son of man shall send angels to gather out of his kingdom. That is, the kingdom of the Son of man. But after the tares are burned and the world is destroyed, the "righteous" shall shine forth in the kingdom of the Father. It is the Father's Kingdom again after the Judgment Day. Before the judgment day, it is the Son of man's kingdom.

Notice also that the son allows the tares to remain, those are the things that "give offense". The tares serve a purpose, which is to complete the bride (Col 1:24, 1 Peter 1:7). Like Pharoah, the tares think they are challenging the Kingdom but really they are the instruments of the Son.

We are in stage 2 now, where there are things that give offense coexisting with the "children of the light" in the Kingdom. This is mentioned elsewhere:

  • But the court which is without the temple leave out, and measure it not; for it is given unto the Gentiles: and the holy city shall they tread under foot forty and two months. Rev 11.2 KJV

  • And from the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffereth violence, and the violent take it by force. Matt 11.12 KJV

  • But as then he that was born after the flesh persecuted him that was born after the Spirit, even so it is now. Gal 4.17 KJV

  • For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that ye cannot do the things that ye would. Gal 5.17 KJV

Right now, there is opposition. There is this battle between the flesh and spirit, but this battle serves a purpose, which is the perfection of the body. When the body is complete, there is no more purpose for the opposition and the Son will return in glory to end the world and burn the flesh.

When will this happen, and can we see the kingdom now? The second parable:

The Parable of the Hard Master

Luke 19.11-27

And as they heard these things, he added and spake a parable, because he was nigh to Jerusalem, and because they thought that the kingdom of God should immediately appear. He said therefore, A certain nobleman went into a far country to receive for himself a kingdom, and to return. And he called his ten servants, and delivered them ten pounds, and said unto them, Occupy till I come.  But his citizens hated him, and sent a message after him, saying, We will not have this man to reign over us. And it came to pass, that when he was returned, having received the kingdom, then he commanded these servants to be called unto him, to whom he had given the money, that he might know how much every man had gained by trading. [..]26 For I say unto you, That unto every one which hath shall be given; and from him that hath not, even that he hath shall be taken away from him. But those mine enemies, which would not that I should reign over them, bring hither, and slay them before me.

Notice a few things:

  • People were expecting the kingdom to appear right away, but Christ makes clear that it will only be visible at the end of the world.

  • The master receives his kingdom when he is gone. He returns with the kingdom and dispenses rewards and punishments.

  • While he is away, again there is the opposition -- the evil citizens who are killed when the master returns.

Theophany

So from the above, it should be clear the Son is going to return a second time, with power, at the end of the world. Not in the middle to "establish" a kingdom, but at the end. So the time of reign is now, except the flesh cannot see the reign, just as it cannot see the kingdom. Only the spirit can see the kingdom.

  • Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; neither doth corruption inherit incorruption. 1 Cor 15.50 KJV

  • And he said unto them, Unto you it is given to know the mystery of the kingdom of God: but unto them that are without, all these things are done in parables: That seeing they may see, and not perceive; and hearing they may hear, and not understand; lest at any time they should be converted, and their sins should be forgiven them. Mark 4:11–12 KJV

But there will come a time when flesh does see the Son return in glory, and his brightness (as well as his word) will destroy the flesh:

  • And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming 2 Thessalonians 2:8 KJV

Until such time as the flesh is burned, we can only see the Son of man, who is now glorified, in the spirit via a theophany. There were several theophanies recorded in scripture, the most famous being John's revelation, but a theophany was also promised to Nathanael in John 1.51

  • And he saith unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Hereafter ye shall see heaven open, and the angels of God ascending and descending upon the Son of man. John 1:51 KJV

Another was seen by Stephen:

  • And said, Behold, I see the heavens opened, and the Son of man standing on the right hand of God. Acts 7:56 KJV

And the most famous by John:

Revelation 1:12–18 (KJV 1900)

... And being turned, I saw seven golden candlesticks; And in the midst of the seven candlesticks one like unto the Son of man, clothed with a garment down to the foot, and girt about the paps with a golden girdle.  His head and his hairs were white like wool, as white as snow; and his eyes were as a flame of fire; And his feet like unto fine brass, as if they burned in a furnace; and his voice as the sound of many waters. And he had in his right hand seven stars: and out of his mouth went a sharp two-edged sword: and his countenance was as the sun shineth in his strength. And when I saw him, I fell at his feet as dead. And he laid his right hand upon me, saying unto me, Fear not; I am the first and the last: I am he that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death.

According to scripture, all believers see Jesus in some form:

  • Hebrews 2:8–9 (KJV 1900)

Thou hast put all things in subjection under his feet. For in that he put all in subjection under him, he left nothing that is not put under him. But now we see not yet all things put under him. But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man.

Some may see him coming on the clouds, some may see him seated in glory, some may seem him as a suffering lamb, and John saw all of the above. Matt 16.28 is just the promise of a theophany. We can speculate, but do not know, when it was fulfilled -- as with most promises in scripture. But it doesn't matter as the timing of a theophany has nothing to do with when the Son of man returns and destroys the flesh with his brightness.

The son is reigning right now, over all powers in Heaven and Earth, but only the spirit can see this.

  • Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you. John 14.17 KJV

The flesh cannot see it as doing so would destroy the flesh, but the flesh is being preserved - temporarily - so that the spirit is given an opportunity to mature through opposition to the flesh - until the bride is complete. Only at the end will the Son of man return and be revealed to the flesh, and so burn it up.

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That preceded the transfiguration on the mount Tabor, where He took His three disciples, and they saw the Kingdom of Heaven, that is to say, the light of divine transfiguring grace on the Lord, the Source of this Light, for He was not enlightened from outside, but the divine light gushed forth from within Him as from the Source.

And this is the true Kingdom: be a partaker of divine transfiguring grace and of divine life and activity which starts in this life and uninterruptedly continues after the physical death (and not like Jehovavitnesist heresy, shamefully shared by many nominally mainstream Christians, that denies the post-mortem life of the soul/person of man). That is to say, Kingdom of Heavens is not a political institution, but an inner, ontological condition of man, who through Grace can become a “son of God” (John 1:12).

It is not that only Peter, John and James saw the Kingdom coming in Power before tasting physical death, - no! They were privileged to see it also by their physical eyes, but every Christian invisibly tasting/experiencing the working of Grace in his heart also “sees”, i.e. experiences the coming in his heart of the Kingdom, that is not from earth and does not come visibly (Luke 17:20). Thus, even if the three chosen apostles were primarily implied, still the referents were all those who accepted from Christ the saving and transfiguring Grace. When Paul says that Christ's power works powerfully in his heart (Colossians 1:29), is it any less than what the three disciples on Tabor experienced? No! That was the same. Thus all Christians can experience coming of the Kingdom already in this life.

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  • Your answer "the kingdom of God is an inner, ontological condition of man, who through Grace can become a “son of God” (John 1:12) is not consistent with the bible that shows it to be a real government. Daniel 7:13-14, Revelation 5:10. Aug 17 at 16:22
  • @AlexBalilo “My Kingdom is not from this world”; “My Kingdom will not come in a visible way” - both expressions deny any political governance; NT is the fulness of revelation, OT just a prefiguration full of symbols and metaphors. You can have best political government, but unless inner graceful transfiguration happens, people in under this government and even its king and chief viziers will be still in hell. Aug 17 at 16:57
  • My comment does not have the word "political". Do you believe the earth mentioned in Revelation 5:10 is invisible too.? Invisible kings ruling over invisible subjects over the invisible earth? Aug 17 at 17:06
  • @AlexBalilo Not at all. Visible aspect in the Kingdom of heaven will be, but in it the love, the peace, the justice - all those divine activities will be invisible. You can visibly see smiling selfies of a couple, man and woman, but behind a smile of a one couple can be an emptiness and jadedness, while behind smile of another couple a grace of a true love. The same holds here: saints in a good monastery already enjoy the beginning of the Kingdom of Heavens, and those ascetic heroes of faith are visible, of course. Aug 17 at 17:12
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It is very possible Jesus meant “taste of death” in terms of when He returns, that He will usher in the “second death”.

Allow me to explain this possible interpretation.

First, let’s read the parallels, who is Jesus speaking to?

  1. (Matthew 16:24) says that Jesus was speaking to His disciples.
  2. (Luke 9:23) says it was “to them all” referencing the disciples again.
  3. (Mark 8:34) is different, with this:

“And He summoned the crowd with His disciples, and said to them, “If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross and follow Me.” ‭‭Mark‬ ‭8:34‬ ‭

This is very revealing, this means that His disciples and the crowd around them were being addressed, and those around His disciples no doubt would have been people who were “unsaved”.

If we compare all 3 parallel accounts, it may be that Jesus was referring to some standing there will not taste of “death” until they see Christ return.

Meaning, those who died in that generation who weren’t believers, would be transferred at Christ’s return and kingdom from “Hades” to the “lake of fire which is the second death” (Revelation 21:8, Revelation 20:11-15)

Or Jesus may have been referring to “death” in the sense of the current state after death, at the end of this age, before the close of the Millennium, which would be a furnace of fire:

“So just as the tares are gathered up and burned with fire, so shall it be at the end of the age.

The Son of Man will send forth His angels, and they will gather out of His kingdom all stumbling blocks, and those who commit lawlessness, and will throw them into the furnace of fire; in that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.

Then the righteous will shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father. He who has ears, let him hear.” ‭‭Matthew‬ ‭13:40-43‬ ‭

Jesus also used short-change language (if we want to call it that) where He would use words to describe certain realities figuratively or in a representative way.

For example:

“This He said, and after that He *said to them, “Our friend Lazarus has fallen asleep; but I go, so that I may awaken him out of sleep.”

The disciples then said to Him, “Lord, if he has fallen asleep, he will recover.”

Now Jesus had spoken of his death, but they thought that He was speaking of literal sleep.

So Jesus then said to them plainly, “Lazarus is dead, and I am glad for your sakes that I was not there, so that you may believe; but let us go to him.”” ‭‭John‬ ‭11:11-15

‬ ‭Using this example from John 11:11-15, we might assume a hermeneutic by which we can assume that Jesus in Matthew 16:28 was speaking of death in a representative way, because the “second death” is nevertheless still a form of death, and Jesus may have been referring to the second death.

Another example of Jesus using this type of representation language:

“Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life; he who believes in Me will live even if he dies, and everyone who lives and believes in Me will never die. Do you believe this?”” ‭‭John‬ ‭11:25-26‬

What did Jesus mean by “and everyone who lives and believes in Me will never die”?

It’s possible that Jesus was also referring to the second death, because believers still die in the flesh, while they have faith in the Son of God.

Or He meant “never die” in terms of the resurrection power we receive from Him in that the last enemy death, is destroyed, per 1 Corinthians 15.

Or both, since we read:

Blessed and holy is the one who has a part in the first resurrection; over these the second death has no power, but they will be priests of God and of Christ and will reign with Him for a thousand years.” ‭‭Revelation‬ ‭20:6‬

If my theory is true, then Matthew 16:28 would be Jesus referencing unbelievers tasting of “death” in the eschatological sense per (2 Thessalonians 1:8-10).

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Yes, Jesus meant what He said, and His everlasting kingdom was established in that same generation in which He was first manifested on earth.

I wonder if you tremble when you ask if Jesus erred? And, yet the reason so many people dare ask that question is because the teaching of the scriptures has been so perverted by men who teach a future “2nd” coming of Christ that first began as a Jewish fable promoted by unbelieving rabbis after the fall of the temple in Jerusalem in AD 70, which over time infected the teaching of the “church fathers” who began making the scriptures into allegories, and which then became enshrined and canonized in Catholic doctrine during the Counter-reformation because Martin Luther continued in his Catholic training to falsely spread into the Protestant reformation the idea of the Pope being the Anti-Christ.

The entire futurist expectation that has had every generation for over 1400 years expecting to see another earthly manifestation of Christ which has never occurred has left many to lose hope and faith in God’s word, and many to conclude that His word is false. It is disastrous to remove the time statements from God’s word.

Jesus meant exactly what He said. There were some standing there that day that saw His second coming in that generation just as He promised them they would (Heb. 9:28). The false teaching of a thousand year reign on earth and a future rapture of His church, and one last final day of judgment is the fables, and traditions of men. Softly, kindly, we say this is just a misunderstanding of those who have been deceived. But, when the result is that we question if Christ made a mistake, then we need to have Christ’s attitude when He immediately called Peter an adversary (Matt. 16:23 (1)

Did Christ err when He told Caiaphas that Caiaphas would see Him coming in the clouds (Matt. 26:64)? Do you suppose that He was just being spiteful?

Did Christ err when He told Peter that John would remain (live) to see Christ’s coming (John 21:22-24)?

Did Christ err when He told His disciples that they would not have finished going through the cities of Israel before He came again (Matt. 10:23)?

Did Christ err when He told His disciples that their generation would not pass till all those things were fulfilled (Matt. 24:34)?

Call it what it is! To say He erred is to call Him a liar. How much easier is it to trust in Him, to believe His word? He meant what He said. Which means that any teaching that counters these very clear statements needs to be questioned and discarded. When we see teachings of men that contradict God’s word, then we need to immediately look at what is begin taught, and to question the teaching of men, instead of assuming that Christ lied.(2)

Christ’s second coming was in that same generation in which He was manifested on earth in the 1st century AD (Heb. 9:28) not for the cause of sin as He had already taken care of that with His death on the cross, but for salvation / deliverance of His saints out of the hands of the tyrants who were persecuting them for their belief in Him, and for judgment of those unbelievers who denied that He was the Messiah and for crucifying Him (Rev. 1:7).

He told His disciples that He would be coming in judgment (Matt. 24 -25). And, when He came the 2nd time for that judgment He would be bringing His kingdom with Him. (3)(4)(5)

John the Immerser (Baptist) came preaching that the Kingdom was at hand (Matt. 2:3). Jesus came preaching that the Kingdom was at hand in the 1st century AD. That means the kingdom was near to them in the 1st century AD. To say otherwise that we are still waiting for that kingdom some 2,000 years later is to again call Jesus a liar.

Christ had told them that His second appearance to that generation (Heb 9:28) would be:

  1. for judgment – Matt. 13:37-42; 22:1-14; 23:33-39; 25:31-46; 26:64,

  2. in glory – Matt. 16:27; 24:30; 25:31; Mark 8:38; 13:26; Luke 21:27, and

  3. with the kingdom – Matt. 4:17; 10:7; 16:28; Mark 1:15; 9:1; Luke 9:27.

That judgment would destroy the temple in Jerusalem (Matt. 24:1-2) to completely remove the old sacrificial system of the old Mosaic covenant which was ready in the 1st century AD to pass away (Heb. 8:13). That was the end times spoken of in the New Testament books. It was the end of the Jewish world as they knew it.

That temple in Jerusalem had to fall so that His everlasting kingdom could be established. That is what Jesus meant when He told them in Matt. 5:18 that nothing in the law, not one iota nor one tittle would pass until “heaven and earth” passed, because “heaven and earth” was a prophetic figurative idiom that the Jews called the temple in Jerusalem. It was also used in Deu. 4:26 as a metaphor for the old covenant.(6)

It is imperative to learn that the prophetic judgments contain much figurative and hyperbolic language. Not everything in God’s word is literal. There are idioms, and metaphors, similes and symbolism throughout the prophesies. We have to recognize that when we are reading a prophetic passage we must know that it will contain God’s figurative metaphors.

Christ’s kingdom came after His last will and testament, the new covenant of the gospel of Christ, had been probated throughout the known world of the old Roman empire, which Paul affirmed had been fully preached in the 1st century AD (Rom. 15:18-19; Col. 1:23). When that animal sacrificial temple fell in Jerusalem at the hands of the Romans in AD 70, Christ fully established His kingdom (Rev. 21: 1-3).

It is not an earthly kingdom. It is spiritual, and heavenly. It came without observation and is within the hearts of all those who are in Christ (Luke 17:20-21). Ever since that temple in Jerusalem fell, all those who are baptized into Christ have entered into His kingdom, and have passed from death unto life (John 5:24).

Everything in God’s word becomes clearer when you leave the time statements in the generation in which Christ said them in the 1st century AD, and believe what He said.

Notes:

  1. When Jesus Called Peter ‘Satan’ - ShreddingTheVeil

  2. Did Christ Lie to His Disciples? - ShreddingTheVeil

  3. The Promised Land: Between the Cross and the Kingdom - ShreddingTheVeil

  4. Frequent Mistakes – Part II: Rev. 5:6, The Ascension of Christ - here

  5. The Days of His Visitation - here

  6. Heaven and Earth Have Passed Away - here

8
  • @Gina.Your answer ask did Christ err when He told Caiaphas that Caiaphas would see Him coming in the clouds (Matt. 26:64)? Is there a verse that show Caiphas seeing Jesus in the clouds? Aug 17 at 12:13
  • Coming in the clouds is figurative judgment language meaning that they would see the results of His judgment. It does not mean they would literally see Him in the literal clouds. Do you believe what Christ said? Do you have to question the future prophesy He gave to Caiaphas? Matt. 24:30; Mark 13:26; 14:62. The year Caiaphas died is unknown, some saying 46 AD, others 66 AD. Point being that Jesus told Caiaphas he would see His coming in judgment. I believe what Jesus said.
    – Gina
    Aug 17 at 12:30
  • Luke 17:20-21, show Jesus speaking to the Pharisees, do you take this verses as saying that the kingdom of God is in these pharisees' hearts and that they are in Christ? Aug 17 at 13:27
  • Gr 1787 "entos" - within, or among. Better translated as in the midst of you (NIV, NASB, NET, NRSV). Within you as in among them, in their presence, or here with you. Does not mean the Pharisees were believers.
    – Gina
    Aug 17 at 13:42
  • But you used Luke 17:20-21 to support your answer "is not an earthly kingdom. It is spiritual, and heavenly. It came without observation and is within the hearts of all those who are in Christ (Luke 17:20-21" Aug 17 at 16:58
-2

Although I am in favor of the answer, that "the Son of Man coming in his kingdom" indicate "the flourish of the Church" during the apostolic time, when the surviving apostles all had seen. However, my mind is unsettled with this answer.

When Jesus pronounced it;

“Truly I tell you, some who are standing here will not taste death before they see the Son of Man coming in his kingdom.” (Matthew 16:28 NIV)

And he said to them, “Truly I tell you, some who are standing here will not taste death before they see that the kingdom of God has come with power.” (Mark 9:1 NIV)

“Truly I tell you, some who are standing here will not taste death before they see the kingdom of God.” (Luke 9:27 NIV)

Jesus was with His 12 disciples on their way to the mount, where the Transfiguration occur. Jesus use the word "some" as he knew Judah Iscariot would not be counted. If "the kingdom of God" was "the church", the church was seen flourishing in difficult time. However, when Constantine nationalized the Christianity, it became a curse, as corruption planted its seed in the church when church shared powers with the authority.

Then there is a thought, if Mark claimed "the kingdom of God has come with power", was this power existed only at time of the apostles? Could Satan suppress the Lord's power? Or the Lord withdrew His Spirit from corrupted church? One of the main argument in this verse, is it a single event, or it is a continuous event.

I do not have a solid thought, but there was a flash in my mind that the subject of this verse was John, and his book of Revelation. We will notice that the Gospel of John did not have a similar account, but he did made an account of the Transfiguration. John 1:14 read

The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.

John always keep his name and his events anonymous. Jesus had to use the word "some" instead of "one" to avoid dispute amongst the disciples trying to find the target. The Book of Revelation is the last prophesy from the Lord. So when Jesus proclaimed "It is finished" (John 19:30) when he died on the cross, there is no 2nd chance of Salvation, for the Son of God will not be crucified again (Hebrews 6:6).

The Book of Revelation is the last prophecy, the last vision the Lord revealed to John what is coming in the End Day. The last statement to all the seven churches is a warning, not only to them, it also to us and generation to come;

Whoever has ears, let them hear what the Spirit says to the churches.

It is important for us to understand, we are not the audiences to see the coming of the Lord's kingdom. We are the participants in his coming.

2
  • If, as Jesus said "“Everyone knows what I teach. I have preached regularly in the synagogues and the Temple, where the people gather. I have not spoken in secret. John 18:20, his prediction/assurance recorded in Matthew 16:28 should be plain. If everyone knew what he taught, why are there differing thoughts on what he taught?. Aug 17 at 16:50
  • @Alex Balilo - Did you recall the disciples asked Jesus why He used parables? Jesus did not taught in secret, but it didn't mean everyone would understand. The Gospel of John has recorded 7 times His disciples didn't understand what Jesus meant, not until the Spirit taught them. I don't mean I wrote the Spirit told me, I really don't know. I just wrote something in my mind, and I don't know if it was correct. Aug 17 at 19:47

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