24 For false messiahs and false prophets will appear and perform great signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect. 25 See, I have told you ahead of time.
26 “So if anyone tells you, ‘There he is, out in the wilderness,’ do not go out; or, ‘Here he is, in the inner rooms,’ do not believe it. 27 For as lightning that comes from the east is visible even in the west, so will be the coming of the Son of Man. 28 Wherever there is a carcass, there the vultures will gather. 35 Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will never pass away...
36 “But about that day or hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son,[f] but only the Father. 37 As it was in the days of Noah, so it will be at the coming of the Son of Man. 38 For in the days before the flood, people were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, up to the day Noah entered the ark; 39 and they knew nothing about what would happen until the flood came and took them all away. That is how it will be at the coming of the Son of Man. 40 Two men will be in the field; one will be taken and the other left. 41 Two women will be grinding with a hand mill; one will be taken and the other left.
42 “Therefore keep watch, because you do not know on what day your Lord will come. 43 But understand this: If the owner of the house had known at what time of night the thief was coming, he would have kept watch and would not have let his house be broken into. 44 So you also must be ready, because the Son of Man will come at an hour when you do not expect him.
Thoughts: Harold Camping says he has mathematically figured it out: the world will end today- according to his calculations from the seventy weeks of Daniel. With the number of natural disasters (earthquakes, tsunamis, volcanoes, tornadoes), the global economic recession, the reaching of all nations with the gospel in our generation, the re-establishment of Israel, many think we are near the end. But Jesus has warned of false prophets predicting His coming (24,26), and that "no one knows" (36) and that He comes like a thief in the night (43). Thoughts of Christ's coming hopefully spur us to honor, worship, and serve Him. However, false prophets make the truth seem irrelevant too. Perhaps today you may use Mr. Camping's signs to broker a conversation with a neighbor, friend, or family member about Christ. Christ is real, and not dead. One day we will all meet Him either in death or when He comes back. No one knows- not even Mr. Camping.
Prayer: Lord, may I always be trusting and not afraid of meeting you. May I always love you and your presence more than anything or anyone else in the world. May I always have the desire to speak of you- your love, grace, and mercy to others.
John Calvin Abridged: Christ warns many times against false prophets and Antichrists in this passage so that the elect would be on their guard. Those who are careless and inattentive will be entangled by their snares. At the same time Christ tells them to keep watch but not be troubled at the sight of false prophets who may even perform miracles.