The book of Revelation is about the Tribulation and Israel. The book of Isaiah reveals the details of the Millennium. Daniel gives us insight as to events leading up to That Day of God. Matthew is God’s warning to Israel at End Time best known as Jacob’s Trouble.
Before setting another foot in or eyes upon end time events presented in the Book of Matthew, please keep foremost in one’s mind that Matthew was originally written in Hebrew. Why? Because it is primarily to the Hebrew Tribes of Israel. Therefore, it was originally written in a language almost exclusive to Israelis. Its primary goal or target market is the Hebrew people of Promise, Israel.
In reading Matthew, we see a great gulf of about 400 years between the end of the Old Testament (Malachi) and the beginnings of the New Testament. We won’t debate or discuss the reasoning, but Matthew was not the first of the New Testament gospel books written. That banner is most likely in the camp of the Book of Mark. Some declare this honor goes to the Book of Galatians or the Book of James. Our point? Matthew is NOT the first New Testament book. The message to the Jews (Hebrew people) comes after the life of Christ.
The following chart is based on conservative scholarship and archaeological findings and is intended as a guideline only. One Bible scholar and editor puts the chronology of the New Testament books this way:
1 Galatians 49 A.D.
2 James 49 A.D.
3 1 Thessalonians 50 – 51 A.D.
4 2 Thessalonians 50 – 51 A.D.
5 1 Corinthians 54 A.D.
6 2 Corinthians 55 A.D.
7 Romans 55 A.D.
8 Mark 57 – 59 A.D.
9 Luke 60 A.D.
10 Ephesians 60 A.D.
11 Colossians 60 A.D.
12 Philemon 60 A.D.
13 Acts 60 A.D.
14 Philippians 61 A.D.
15 1 Timothy 61 A.D.
16 Titus 62 A.D.
17 2 Timothy 62 A.D.
18 1 Peter 63 A.D.
19 2 Peter 63-64 A.D.
20 Matthew 60’s – We do not know when it was penned but we do know it was to the Hebrew Israelis and their leadership. It is written to provide evidence to them that Christ is for real to the Jews.
Since this chronology has some to do with our narrative commentary on End Time prophecies, we leave this for the reader to decide if the proposed datelines are right. We only wish to make it understood that the end time scripture found in Matthew has a primary target audience of the 12 Tribes of Israel (Jacob). This means the primary message is also focused on Israel and Israelis. This is also true of the Book of Revelation from chapter 4 to the end of that book.
One could begin by reading Matthew 24:1-51. We suggest end time verses in Matthew begin in Matthew 1:23 where it reads… “BEHOLD, THE VIRGIN SHALL BE WITH CHILD, AND BEAR A SON, AND THEY SHALL CALL HIS NAME IMMANUEL,” which is translated, as “God *with us.”
*Met-ah‘ means “amongst or with us” in Greek. Eg-o’ [us] is in the singular. Why the singular? There is only one group called the church in scripture. It is those who are true believers and followers of Jesus. This includes Jews and Gentiles.
Matthew 2:6 is a prelude to the time yet to come when Jesus sits on the throne of Israel. Look at this verse carefully. “For out of you a ruler who will shepherd my people.” This end-time event is when Christ returns to earth, sets up his kingdom, brings peace to earth, and tribute [Feast of Tents, aka Tabernacles, In-gathering] is paid to the In That Day envied nation of Israel/Jerusalem.
JIV NOTE: There are three appearances mentioned in the scripture of Christ-to-earth. Two are in person and one is to resurrect and meet his faithful in the clouds. The first is his birth, death, and resurrection. The second is when he comes to rapture the true believers called his Church. The third will follow the Tribulation with a 1,000-year millennial reign. Jesus comes to set up his Millennial Kingdom. After that… A NEW heaven and a NEW earth. The heavens and earth will NOT be a remodel job of the old. Put in real terms it is a brand-new sky or atmosphere and a brand-new dwelling place, perhaps dwelling places identified as a grouping called heaven.
Not so prophetic but so often misunderstood is Matthew 2:15…”… for out of Egypt I called my Son,” said God through his prophet. This follows the retreat of Mary, Joseph, and Jesus to Egypt to avoid the ruling of King Herod to kill all male babies under the age of two. The Wise men from the far east, probably the Mountains of Zagros where tens of thousands of dispersed Israeli Tribes settled after the Assyrian dispersion, had told King Herod, this child will be the King of the Jews. When Mary, Joseph, and Jesus returned from Egypt after Herod’s death, Jesus was identified as “called out of Egypt”.
Aha moment: There was a tribe called the Magi that migrated out of the Zagros Mountains after the dispersed Israelis were forced there by the Assyrians. Six tribes are recorded as having occupied the Zagros area. They could be sub-clans of the 12 original Tribes of Israel.
We also read in Hosea 11:1 that Israel as a people are identified as being called out of Egypt and referenced as God’s sons. We have two legitimate options.
- Matthew 2:15 is a reference to baby Jesus and his parents being called back out of Egypt after King Herod dies.
- This is a reference to Israel after 400-plus years in Egyptian captivity.
NOTE: Hosea 11:2 suggests that #2 is the correct view. Be careful when concluding a meaning of a partial verse. Take it in the content and context of what precedes and follows. Especially so if what is considered in one’s deduction from only part of a verse.
However, if one continues reading Matthew 2 up to verse 15, we read it is Jesus who is (re) called out of Egypt as a young child along with Joseph and Mary. One might try to be neutral as to which position to take scholastically and conclude it is a reference to both.
Ahamoments will offer a third option. When God had Moses call his Israeli families out of Egypt, Jesus would not be born for another 14 to 15 hundred years. Yet, Jesus’ DNA through the Tribe of Judah goes back to their Egyptian captivity and release of what became a population of millions. They started as a wandering band of 70 or fewer relatives of Jacob escaping starvation in Canaan. Out of Egypt is not a line item, time-stamped, statement. Yes, out of Egypt came the 12 tribes of Israelis via Moses. Out of that tribe of Judah, Jesus is a descendant.
INSIGHT: Matthew 2:18 reads (NKJV)…
“A voice was heard in Ramah,
Lamentation, weeping, and great mourning,
Rachel weeping for her children,
Refusing to be comforted,
Because they are no more.”
Where is Ramah and what has that to do with End Time? First understand this verse in Matthew 2:18 is a quote from Jeremiah 31:15. Jeremiah was the prophet immediately preceding Daniel. Jeremiah foretold the destruction of Judah as a kingdom by the Babylonians. Ramah was a city in the territory of Benjamin. Benjamin was the brother of Joseph, both sons of Rachel.
It gets even more interesting when one considers the whole of this event of Jesus returning out of Egypt. Yes, the messenger told Joseph to return to Israel. He did NOT specifically state to return to Bethlehem. Joseph found out that a son of King Herod now ruled. Joseph became fearful and returned to Nazareth, not Bethlehem. Galilee was not a Jewish city. Isaiah 9 refers to Galilee as a land of the Gentiles. Jesus came “into the world” so that all who believe and follow him will be saved for eternity with him. All souls once reunited with their bodies will serve eternity in either heaven or hell. This is symbolic of Jesus coming to the world, not just the Jews as one might conclude given only his supposedly intended return to Bethlehem, Israel. He returned from Egypt with his parents to a territory that had a minority of Jews.
Rev. Dr. Jstark