Article #16 – The Abomination of Desolation [Matthew 24:15+]
Too often one hears from the pulpit words we do not understand but accept because one has heard them before in worship, message, conversation, or study form. What is an abomination? We think desolation is meaningful but what does this word include?
Using the Greek (Strong’s G946) bdel’-oog-mah (abomination) is specifically idolatry. An attitude of values. The word desolation (Strong’s G2049/2050) is er-ay’-mo-sis means to bring something of value to nothingness or bring to naught. In this manner, Matthew 24:15 reflects Daniel 11:31. The abominations in Daniel 9 are similar if not the same as mentioned in Luke 16:15. Not to bring something of value to less but to remove its value; its intended purpose.
JIV: This definition of “desolation” has become the norm in many churches. There may or may not be a Bible challenge to the congregants. There may or may not be a Bible lesson taught. There may be a strong focus on society and social paradigms. There may not even be a mention of worship. Many churches and denominations have no clue as to what worship is. It is not a nice talk with incredible music. Worship itself has been brought to nothingness. Yes, people may enjoy the lecture and music, but worship of God the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit has been brought to naught.
Leviticus 20:13 is an excellent example of an abomination of desolation: 13 If a man lies with a male as he lies with a woman, both have committed an abomination (NKJV). This is not the abomination of which Daniel speaks. His mention is the third Jewish Temple of End Time. The Antichrist and his forces shall bring the sanctity of the rebuilt Temple in Jerusalem to naught most likely at the 3 ½ year mark of the Tribulation. This is also what the Bible refers to as the beginning of Jacob’s (heavy) Trouble. Note that it does not say a time of Church Trouble. We already have them. As we live in what is Daniel’s 70-week dream, the first 69 weeks (period) is the Church Age.
NOTE: This is specifically identifying the Temple in Jerusalem. That has yet to be rebuilt as of this writing. THERE IS NO OTHER place of worship mentioned or hinted at in his End Time dream. Who will set himself up to be worshiped? The Antichrist (Beast #2) or Satan himself (Beast #1). The third member of Satan’s trinity is his high priest. The idol that speaks and commands all to worship Satan is an active character in the Bible, but not part of Satan’s trinity. He or it is the very definition of an abomination. Satan gives it the power to speak *(Revelation 13:15).
*The “he” in this verse is antichrist. He receives his power from Satan. The image (idol) is a likeness of Satan. Worship is the central conflict between Jesus Christ and Lucifer. Lucifer wants to be the Most High. He denies the existence of Jesus as the Son of God. How does or can one test the spirits? Ask the spirit if Jesus is the son of God. They will try to deny or avoid answering.
Be confident here that the last sentence in this verse is not exclusive to Christians. It reads in the NKJV: “…the image of the beast should both speak and cause as many as would not worship the image of the beast to be killed”. “…as many as would not worship the image.” Nothing in this passage is exclusively Christian. There has been and continues to be the rebel human. It goes back to the Garden of Eden. There will be those on earth who refuse to acknowledge Christ including the antichrist. If this were not so, the Bible would have told us, but it doesn’t.
Understand that this is all part of THAT DAY of End Time. It is during the mid-point of the Tribulation. The Temple has been rebuilt. Judaism is practiced in Jerusalem. Antichrist is known. Satan’s trinity is himself, the antichrist, and the false prophet are known. Satan will grant the power to the antichrist to give the power to the idol of speech. This parallels or immediately follows the desolation of the Temple in Jerusalem. The beast rising from the earth or “sea of peoples” (Revelation 13:11) may come up from within Israel. He is the second beast. Satan (Lucifer) is the first beast. This is addressed in previous articles in this commentary series.
Why, what, or to whom is the Apostle John writing? The next few verses in Matthew explain it. The people to whom John sends this End Time Revelation warning will see the abomination of desolation in Jerusalem. It is Israelis. They are told to flee, hide, seek refuge, not to return to their own homes to pack up belongings.
Matthew 24:16 “then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains.
Matthew 24:17 Let him who is on the housetop not go down to take anything out of his house.
Matthew 24:18 And let him who is in the field not go back to get his clothes.
Matthew 24:19 But woe to those who are pregnant and to those who are nursing babies in those days!
Matthew 24:20 And pray that your flight may not be in winter or on the Sabbath.
At the 3 ½ mark of the 7-year signed peace agreement between Israel and the antichrist, Satan will turn on Israel…God’s elect or chosen. The antichrist is the guy on the white horse mentioned in Revelation 6:2. He has a bow, rides a white horse as a triumphal peacemaker, is given a crown of authority, but has no arrows. He is the mere messenger of Satan. He is given great power by Satan. This is the apocalypse.
“The horse of the apocalypse actually appears to Zechariah in a vision (Zechariah 1:8). And although Jesus and the rider of this particular horse share many similarities, the rider of this horse, who wears a crown, most likely represents a pseudo-christ of some sort. A political leader bent on conquest, such as an Alexander the Great or fill-in-the-blank political leader we can place on the back of this horse” Crosswalk.com. Hope Bolinger makes several very good points on his website article.
We will discuss the main characters of That Day in a later article. It is easy to confuse who is who and who does what. Click on the above Crosswalk.com to extend one’s knowledge.
Rev. Dr. Jstark