by Roby Ellis
[Scripture Reading: Luke 21:5-6]
A. During the week before His crucifixion, Jesus spent a lot of time in the temple, where He had numerous confrontations with Jewish leaders and taught the people constantly (Matthew 26:55).
B. When the disciples pointed out the buildings of the temple, Jesus prophesied that there would not be one stone left there upon another (Matthew 24:2). What had Israel done to warrant this?
I. What did Israel do?
A. Israel constantly rejected God’s Word (Exodus 16:20,27; 1 Samuel 8:7; Mark 7:9; Luke 7:30).
B. Israel rejected virtually every prophet God sent to turn them back (Exodus 2:14; 5:21; 2 Kings 17:13-20; Luke 13:33; Matthew 23:37).
C. Israel then rejected the Messiah Who came to redeem them (John 1:11; Acts 2:23; 7:52-53; Matthew 21:42; Isaiah 53:3).
D. The majority of Israel ultimately rejected the Gospel delivered by the apostles (Acts 13:46; 17:5).
II. We need to remind ourselves that we too will be judged.
A. We need to remember that God is not only merciful; He is also just (Acts 17:31; Romans 2:5-11; 3:24-26).
B. God has promised to reward everyone according to his works (Matthew 16:27-28; 2 Thessalonians 1:3-10).
C. Because we do not know when He is coming, we need always to be vigilant (2 Peter 3:9-13; Mark 13:32-37).
D. We need to remember what our purpose is and never lose sight of it (Colossians 3:1-7; Luke 21:34-36).
III. What was the consequence of Israel’s rejection of God?
A. Jesus said that the temple would be destroyed and the city left desolate (Matthew 23:38; 24:2).
B. The history of Jerusalem’s fall is identical to Jesus’ prediction (see Josephus’ Wars of the Jews, Books 5-7).
C. When Jerusalem fell, it was clear to everyone that this was the work of God (Wars 6.9.1; cf. Deuteronomy 28:15,52-57).
A. Jerusalem’s fall was not the result of God’s weakness; it was the result of His justice (Romans 2:2-4).
B. When Jerusalem fell, God made it clear that the kingdom of Israel was not invincible, but there was another kingdom introduced there that would be (Matthew 16:18; Daniel 2:44)!
C. Even if you are in God’s house today, you need to keep in mind what your purpose is, and you need always to be watching.