It is that time again! Time for some Questions and Answers. Here are two that I have been frequently receiving.
Q: I find that many of my friends will listen to my perspective that Matthew 24 was fulfilled in AD 70. They then start going into this secondary fulfillment stuff about how Matthew 24 was fulfilled but will reoccur in our future. How would you respond biblically to the concept of a second fulfillment of prophecy?
A. Well first of all, there can only be one true fulfillment of a prophecy. The confusion that people get into is that in the Old Testament there were shadows, which later had a fulfillment in the reality, which is Christ. Some have been confused and see it as precedent for so-called dual fulfillments.
The key with Matthew 24 and why it could NEVER be REPEATED is that the disciples were asking about the End of the Aion (Age), which is the transition from the Old Covenant Age into the New Covenant Age. That cannot be a shadow and cannot be repeated because we are in the perfect, better and permanent New Covenant.
Q: Jon, would you consider doing a blog entry in regards to theologies and beliefs surrounding the "third temple'. I believe it is a much overlooked but equally important component of the entire end-times discussion. We all know it is unnecessary but, it would seem, there are as many Christians eagerly awaiting and supporting the rebuilding of the temple as are awaiting the return of Jesus.
A: Yes, for decades the rumor mill has churned up tales of “Red Heifers” that have been bred for the new temple, clothing that is prepared for the priests, and Levites that have been found to re-establish the system of Temple worship.
First of all, part of what was so devastating to the Jewish nation in 70AD is that the genealogies were burned, therefore the priesthood lineage was lost and it would be IMPOSSIBLE to ever re-establish the temple system.
Also even the leading Pre-tribulation theologian, Dr. Thomas Ice, has honestly stated: “There are no Bible verses that say, ‘there is going to be a third temple.’” (from the book, Ready to Rebuild: The Imminent Plan to Rebuild the Last Days Temple, [published 22 years ago in 1992, I guess imminent is a loose term…] Page 197-198)
The idea of a rebuilt temple is a fantasy, which is required by those that won’t accept the fulfillment of the Bible’s prophecies in the first century.