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First of all, thanks to the ever alert Jim for sending me this story along….
So…. what’s wrong with this picture in the story? Lots, it turns out. In the first place, there is no prophecy in the Bible about a snake crawling out of the Temple Mount wall being a sign of the coming or return of the Messiah. This idea comes from Jewish mysticism of an ultra-orthodox sort, and is not Biblical at all. But there is a second problem with this whole idea as well. If you have read Mk. 13/Mt. 24 carefully in the Greek you will know that while there are signs on the earth that are seen as precursors of coming tribulation and the fall of the Temple, there are no signs on earth as precursors to the return of Christ, only cosmic signs that accompany his second company. There is a big difference. So… just to be clear, even if one takes the prophecy in Mark 13/Mt. 24 literally, it does not refer to signs on the earth of the second coming. Indeed, Jesus said that no one, not even himself during his earthly ministry knew the timing of the second coming, indeed he suggested, as does Paul it will come as a sudden surprise— like a thief in the night. This should have stopped theological weather forecasting of the second coming long ago, since it’s had a 100% failure rate the last almost 2,000 years. But pious curiosity knows no bounds.
Mark - Categories - Events - Mentions - Things
And to be even more specific about Mark 13, there are two categories of events mentions ‘these things’ and what will happen ‘after those days’. It is only the latter category that refers to the second coming, more specifically Mk. 13.5-24 refer to the eschatological distress that will begin during the lifetime of...
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