True Giving
(Mk. 12:41–44)
1Jesus looked up and saw some rich people putting their gifts to God into the Temple collection box. 2Then he saw a poor widow put two small copper coins into the box. 3He said, “This poor widow gave only two small coins. But the truth is, she gave more than all those rich people. 4They have plenty, and they gave only what they did not need. This woman is very poor, but she gave all she had to live on.”
Jesus Warns About the Future
(Mt. 24:1–14; Mk. 13:1–13)
5Some of the followers were talking about the Temple. They said, “This is a beautiful Temple, built with the best stones. Look at the many good gifts that have been offered to God.”
6But Jesus said, “The time will come when all that you see here will be destroyed. Every stone of these buildings will be thrown down to the ground. Not one stone will be left on another.”
7Some followers asked Jesus, “Teacher, when will these things happen? What will show us that it is time for these things to happen?”
8Jesus said, “Be careful! Don’t be fooled. Many people will come using my name. They will say, ‘I am the Messiah#21:8 the Messiah Literally “the one,” meaning the chosen one sent by God. See “Messiah” in the Word List and Mt. 24:5.’ and ‘The right time has come!’ But don’t follow them. 9When you hear about wars and riots, don’t be afraid. These things must happen first. Then the end will come later.”
10Then Jesus said to them, “Nations will fight against other nations. Kingdoms will fight against other kingdoms. 11There will be great earthquakes, sicknesses, and other bad things in many places. In some places there will be no food for the people to eat. Terrible things will happen, and amazing things will come from heaven to warn people.
12“But before all these things happen, people will arrest you and do bad things to you. They will judge you in their synagogues and put you in jail. You will be forced to stand before kings and governors. They will do all these things to you because you follow me. 13But this will give you an opportunity to tell about me. 14Decide now not to worry about what you will say. 15I will give you the wisdom to say things that none of your enemies can answer. 16Even your parents, brothers, relatives, and friends will turn against you. They will have some of you killed. 17Everyone will hate you because you follow me. 18But none of these things can really harm you. 19You will save yourselves by continuing strong in your faith through all these things.
The Destruction of Jerusalem
(Mt. 24:15–21; Mk. 13:14–19)
20“You will see armies all around Jerusalem. Then you will know that the time for its destruction has come. 21The people in Judea at that time should run away to the mountains. The people in Jerusalem must leave quickly. If you are near the city, don’t go in! 22The prophets wrote many things about the time when God will punish his people. The time I am talking about is when all these things must happen. 23During that time it will be hard for women who are pregnant or have small babies, because very bad times will come to this land. God will be angry with these people. 24Some of the people will be killed by soldiers. Others will be made prisoners and taken to all the different countries. The holy city of Jerusalem will be under the control of foreigners until their time is completed.
Don’t Fear
(Mt. 24:29–31; Mk. 13:24–27)
25“Amazing things will happen to the sun, moon, and stars. And people all over the earth will be upset and confused by the noise of the sea and its crashing waves. 26They will be afraid and worried about what will happen to the world. Everything in the sky will be changed. 27Then people will see the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. 28When these things begin to happen, stand up tall and don’t be afraid. Know that it is almost time for God to free you!”
My Words Will Live Forever
(Mt. 24:32–35; Mk. 13:28–31)
29Then Jesus told this story: “Look at all the trees. The fig tree is a good example. 30When it turns green, you know that summer is very near. 31In the same way, when you see all these things happening, you will know that God’s kingdom is very near.
32“I assure you that all these things will happen while some of the people of this time are still living. 33The whole world, earth and sky, will be destroyed, but my words will last forever.
Be Ready All the Time
34“Be careful not to spend your time having parties and getting drunk or worrying about this life. If you do that, you won’t be able to think straight, and the end might come when you are not ready. 35It will come as a surprise to everyone on earth. 36So be ready all the time. Pray that you will be able to get through all these things that will happen and stand safe before the Son of Man.”
37During the day Jesus taught the people in the Temple area. At night he went out of the city and stayed all night on the Mount of Olives. 38Every morning all the people got up early to go listen to Jesus at the Temple.
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