1. Standard memberknightmeister
    knightmeister
    Uk
    Joined
    21 Jan '06
    Moves
    443
    19 Apr '08 22:47
    In Matthew 24:34 (I think) Jesus says “Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled.”

    CS LEWIS comments on this - “Say what you like," we shall be told, "the apocalyptic beliefs of the first Christians have been proved to be false. It is clear from the New Testament that they all expected the Second Coming in their own lifetime. And, worse still, they had a reason, and one which you will find very embarrassing. Their Master had told them so. He shared, and indeed created, their delusion. He said in so many words, 'This generation shall not pass till all these things be done.' And he was wrong. He clearly knew no more about the end of the world than anyone else."

    It is certainly the most embarrassing verse in the Bible. Yet how teasing, also, that within fourteen words of it should come the statement "But of that day and that hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels which are in heaven, neither the Son, but the Father." The one exhibition of error and the one confession of ignorance grow side by side." CS LEWIS

    My question is largely to theists and how they resolve this issue. I know what the Atheists will say (eg - It's because the whole thing is rot anyway etc etc) . I'm wondering how the Theists around here deal with this one. I don't mind saying that I don't have much of an answer myself really and no doubt many Atheists will jump on this and exploit it to the full. For me , it's a question of authentic faith and admitting that it does cause me a problem. The only answer I have at the moment is that Jesus was either partially mistranslated or he just went a bit far in his predictions. Even the best public speaker makes mistakes?
  2. Joined
    15 Oct '06
    Moves
    10115
    19 Apr '08 23:371 edit
    Originally posted by knightmeister
    In Matthew 24:34 (I think) Jesus says “Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled.”

    CS LEWIS comments on this - “Say what you like," we shall be told, "the apocalyptic beliefs of the first Christians have been proved to be false. It is clear from the New Testament that they all expe ust went a bit far in his predictions. Even the best public speaker makes mistakes?
    33 so, you too, when you see all these things, recognize that He is near, right at the door. 34 "Truly I say to you, this generation will not pass away until all these things take place. 35 "Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will not pass away.

    An explanation that would be consistent within the words of Jesus would be that in M35:34 He is speaking of the generation that witnesses "all these things". I see know reason to infer that he necessarily meant the generation to which he was speaking. In other words, M35:34 may be His way of saying that all the events He has detailed will occur within a single generation.
  3. Standard memberknightmeister
    knightmeister
    Uk
    Joined
    21 Jan '06
    Moves
    443
    20 Apr '08 08:21
    Originally posted by ThinkOfOne
    33 so, you too, [b]when you see all these things, recognize that He is near, right at the door. 34 "Truly I say to you, this generation will not pass away until all these things take place. 35 "Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will not pass away.

    An explanation that would be consistent within the words of Jesus would be that in M35:34 ...[text shortened]... His way of saying that all the events He has detailed will occur within a single generation.[/b]
    An interesting idea and a useful one too. I wonder if it totally fits but it might do. I think Cs Lewis's problem is that the early church did not interpret it this way.
  4. DonationPawnokeyhole
    Krackpot Kibitzer
    Right behind you...
    Joined
    27 Apr '02
    Moves
    16879
    20 Apr '08 11:43
    Originally posted by ThinkOfOne
    33 so, you too, [b]when you see all these things, recognize that He is near, right at the door. 34 "Truly I say to you, this generation will not pass away until all these things take place. 35 "Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will not pass away.

    An explanation that would be consistent within the words of Jesus would be that in M35:34 ...[text shortened]... His way of saying that all the events He has detailed will occur within a single generation.[/b]
    This is logically possible but strained minority interpretation.
  5. Standard memberKellyJay
    Walk your Faith
    USA
    Joined
    24 May '04
    Moves
    148450
    20 Apr '08 13:54
    Originally posted by knightmeister
    In Matthew 24:34 (I think) Jesus says “Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled.”

    CS LEWIS comments on this - “Say what you like," we shall be told, "the apocalyptic beliefs of the first Christians have been proved to be false. It is clear from the New Testament that they all expected the Second Co ...[text shortened]... ust went a bit far in his predictions. Even the best public speaker makes mistakes?
    The question for you is how could Jesus not know, because of who He
    was?
    Kelly
  6. Standard memberknightmeister
    knightmeister
    Uk
    Joined
    21 Jan '06
    Moves
    443
    20 Apr '08 18:13
    Originally posted by Pawnokeyhole
    This is logically possible but strained minority interpretation.
    Any chance you could say that in English?
  7. SubscriberAThousandYoung
    West Coast Rioter
    tinyurl.com/y7loem9q
    Joined
    23 Aug '04
    Moves
    24791
    20 Apr '08 19:381 edit
    Originally posted by knightmeister
    In Matthew 24:34 (I think) Jesus says “Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled.”

    CS LEWIS comments on this - “Say what you like," we shall be told, "the apocalyptic beliefs of the first Christians have been proved to be false. It is clear from the New Testament that they all expected the Second Co ust went a bit far in his predictions. Even the best public speaker makes mistakes?
    Wow, great thread.

    I won't try to answer your question since I'm an atheist. Recced.
  8. SubscriberAThousandYoung
    West Coast Rioter
    tinyurl.com/y7loem9q
    Joined
    23 Aug '04
    Moves
    24791
    20 Apr '08 19:411 edit
    Originally posted by KellyJay
    The question for you is how could Jesus not know, because of who He
    was?
    Kelly
    How do you know who Jesus was if not from the Bible? Shouldn't this verse inform your knowledge of who Jesus is rather than the reverse?
  9. Joined
    30 Dec '07
    Moves
    9905
    20 Apr '08 20:17
    Originally posted by AThousandYoung
    How do you know who Jesus was if not from the Bible? Shouldn't this verse inform your knowledge of who Jesus is rather than the reverse?
    Logical. You see, these types of problems stop me from deciding fully for Christianity.
  10. Joined
    15 Sep '04
    Moves
    7051
    20 Apr '08 21:162 edits
    Originally posted by AThousandYoung
    How do you know who Jesus was if not from the Bible? Shouldn't this verse inform your knowledge of who Jesus is rather than the reverse?
    I don't think you understood Kelly's question. In the passage Matthew 24, Jesus forwarns the events of the apocalypse. Jesus adds, however, that he does not know the time when this will occur.

    So the problem is not over the meaning of "in this generation," but that Jesus apparently had limited knowledge. Kelly then asks how does this reconcile with Christian teaching on the divinity and eternity of Jesus? I am not sure how your question relates to his.


    In my own opinion, Jesus's confession of limited knowledge counterbalances his statement that the apocalypse will occur "in this generation" - he cannot say it will happen "in this generation" and also maintain that he has no knowledge of when it will occur. Therefore, I am inclined to interpret "in this generation" broadly. Perhaps someone with access to biblical scholarship might offer an insight into the exact meaning of "generation" and how the application is limited by the demonstrative pronoun "this".

    Thus, it might refer to an actual generational age-group (the time of the Apostles), or to all Christians, whose religion is the generation descended from the Jewish relgion (which is something Jesus would know. Already understanding his redemptive mission, Jesus knows he will establish a new covenant* - one that will supersede the Jewish covenant. Thus, he can know that the apocalypse will occur in the Christian generation and not the Jewish.)

    *This interpretation, however, comes not from the gospel but from subsequent epistles (namely by St. Paul) who argued that Jesus fulfilled a salvific role in death, and made a new covenant. The gospels are not explicit and I admit to reading into the text.
  11. SubscriberAThousandYoung
    West Coast Rioter
    tinyurl.com/y7loem9q
    Joined
    23 Aug '04
    Moves
    24791
    20 Apr '08 21:47
    Originally posted by Conrau K
    I don't think you understood Kelly's question. In the passage Matthew 24, Jesus forwarns the events of the apocalypse. Jesus adds, however, that he does not know the time when this will occur.

    So the problem is not over the meaning of "in this generation," but that Jesus apparently had limited knowledge. Kelly then asks how does this reconcile with Chri ...[text shortened]... new covenant. The gospels are not explicit and I admit to reading into the text.
    In the passage Matthew 24, Jesus forwarns the events of the apocalypse. Jesus adds, however, that he does not know the time when this will occur.

    My understanding is that Kelly argues against this interpretation because of his prior knowledge of Jesus. My pont is that Kelly should not HAVE prior knowledge of Jesus before reading the scripture according to the sola scriptura principle which I think he adheres to.
  12. round and round
    Joined
    15 Mar '08
    Moves
    4019
    20 Apr '08 22:56
    Originally posted by ThinkOfOne
    33 so, you too, [b]when you see all these things, recognize that He is near, right at the door. 34 "Truly I say to you, this generation will not pass away until all these things take place. 35 "Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will not pass away.

    An explanation that would be consistent within the words of Jesus would be that in M35:34 ...[text shortened]... His way of saying that all the events He has detailed will occur within a single generation.[/b]
    ThinkOfOne, you nailed it.
    Just a question to everyone here: How many of you actually read the passage and it's context before posting? Judge yourself as to whether you are an honest inquirer or just having a knee-jerk reaction.
    BTW, it's worth mentioning that C.S. Lewis may have been a well-known and respected Christian apologist, but he was not a Bible scholar. Examine his works for yourself.
    Revelation 1:1 - "The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave Him to show His servants - things which must shortly take place." (NKJV) That verse is often misunderstood in the same way as this portion in Matthew, and the correct understanding is the same also. 'Shortly' in this verse could have also been translated 'quickly' or 'swiftly'. So instead of Jesus (in Matthew) and John (in Revelation) being understood to be saying, "The end is near," the sense is that once these things begin happening, the course of events will flow swiftly.
  13. Joined
    04 Feb '05
    Moves
    29132
    21 Apr '08 09:34
    Originally posted by knightmeister
    In Matthew 24:34 (I think) Jesus says “Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled.”

    CS LEWIS comments on this - “Say what you like," we shall be told, "the apocalyptic beliefs of the first Christians have been proved to be false. It is clear from the New Testament that they all expected the Second Co ...[text shortened]... ust went a bit far in his predictions. Even the best public speaker makes mistakes?
    best not to dwell on it. mathew could have understood wrong. he wasn't taking notes when jesus spoke so when he did wrote his gospel he could have misinterpreted some words. or the translators got it wrong. even if what matthew wrote is true, does the fact that jesus might have made a mistake on the date of the apocalypse by about 2000 years change his message? ("make love not war"😉.
  14. Cape Town
    Joined
    14 Apr '05
    Moves
    52945
    21 Apr '08 10:20
    Originally posted by knightmeister
    It is certainly the most embarrassing verse in the Bible.
    Why? Surely there are lots of indisputable errors in the popular English translations? Some people admit the errors others deny them, others try to explain away or hide them, but I don't see how this particular one is unique.

    For me , it's a question of authentic faith and admitting that it does cause me a problem. The only answer I have at the moment is that Jesus was either partially mistranslated or he just went a bit far in his predictions. Even the best public speaker makes mistakes?
    Why go for 'mistranslated'?
    Do you believe that the writer of Mathew witnessed Jesus saying it?
    Do you believe that the writer of Mathew was inspired to not make mistakes?
    If his writings were inspired by God in such a way as to make them infallible then why are the translations of it fallible? Why doesn't God inspire translators?

    My argument is that everyone with intelligence who is not too blinded by unquestioning faith can see that the English translation has errors - so at some point you must make a decision as to what you believe is accurate and factual:
    1. What Jesus actually said.
    2. What people verbally reported that he said.
    3. What the writer of Mathew wrote down.
    4. What later copiers of Mathew wrote down.
    5. What translators of copies of Mathew translated.

    You seem willing to find error in translation yet unwilling to find error in other areas. Why?
  15. Standard memberknightmeister
    knightmeister
    Uk
    Joined
    21 Jan '06
    Moves
    443
    21 Apr '08 15:45
    Originally posted by twhitehead
    Why? Surely there are lots of indisputable errors in the popular English translations? Some people admit the errors others deny them, others try to explain away or hide them, but I don't see how this particular one is unique.

    [b]For me , it's a question of authentic faith and admitting that it does cause me a problem. The only answer I have at the mome ...[text shortened]... seem willing to find error in translation yet unwilling to find error in other areas. Why?
    I'm quite willing to accept mistakes in other areas. This particular verse and set of verses is more problematic than many because it involves a testable prophecy in theory. If Jesus did actually definitely say that all these things would happen in their lifetime and they didn't then its a problem. I would have thought you of all people would appreciate this.
Back to Top