Jesus Failed to Return as Promised

The first account of Jesus' prediction of his return is stated by Mark in chapter 13. Let's take a cursory glance and open it up for discussion...

1 And as he came out of the temple, one of his disciples said to him, “Look, Teacher, what wonderful stones and what wonderful buildings!” 2 And Jesus said to him, “Do you see these great buildings? There will not be left here one stone upon another, that will not be thrown down.”

3 And as he sat on the Mount of Olives opposite the temple, Peter and James and John and Andrew asked him privately, 4 “Tell us, when will this be, and what will be the sign when these things are all to be accomplished?”
According to Edward Adams in The Stars Will Fall From Heaven, these are two separate questions conjoined by the word καὶ, "and" (p. 140). The second question is a clear allusion to Daniel 12:6-7 as translated in the LXX (Mark: ταῦτα συντελεῖσθαι πάντα; cf. Daniel 12:7 συντελεσθήσεται πάντα ταῦτα), where Daniel is talking about the end of all things and the resurrection of the righteous and unrighteous (see 12:1-3).

5 And Jesus began to say to them, “Take heed that no one leads you astray. 6 Many will come in my name, saying, ‘I am he!’ and they will lead many astray. 7 And when you hear of wars and rumors of wars, do not be alarmed; this must take place, but the end is not yet. 8 For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom; there will be earthquakes in various places, there will be famines; this is but the beginning of the birth-pangs.

9 “But take heed to yourselves; for they will deliver you up to councils; and you will be beaten in synagogues; and you will stand before governors and kings for my sake, to bear testimony before them. 10 And the gospel must first be preached to all nations. 11 And when they bring you to trial and deliver you up, do not be anxious beforehand what you are to say; but say whatever is given you in that hour, for it is not you who speak, but the Holy Spirit. 12 And brother will deliver up brother to death, and the father his child, and children will rise against parents and have them put to death; 13 and you will be hated by all for my name’s sake. But he who endures to the end will be saved.

14 “But when you see the desolating sacrilege (RSV; NASB, "abomination of desolation;" NIV, "the abomination that causes desolation") set up where it ought not to be (let the reader understand), then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains; 15 let him who is on the housetop not go down, nor enter his house, to take anything away; 16 and let him who is in the field not turn back to take his mantle. 17 And alas for those who are with child and for those who give suck in those days! 18 Pray that it may not happen in winter. 19 For in those days there will be such tribulation as has not been from the beginning of the creation which God created until now, and never will be. 20 And if the Lord had not shortened the days, no human being would be saved; but for the sake of the elect, whom he chose, he shortened the days. 21 And then if any one says to you, ‘Look, here is the Christ!’ or ‘Look, there he is!’ do not believe it. 22 False Christs and false prophets will arise and show signs and wonders, to lead astray, if possible, the elect. 23 But take heed; I have told you all things beforehand.
In these verses Edward Adams argues that Jesus has answered the first question about the destruction of the temple and what his followers should do when they see these things.
24 “But in those days, after that tribulation, the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light, 25 and the stars will be falling from heaven, and the powers in the heavens will be shaken. 26 And then they will see the Son of man coming (ἐρχόμενον) in clouds with great power and glory. 27 And then he will send out the angels, and gather his elect from the four winds, from the ends of the earth to the ends of heaven.
The events previously described (vss. 5-23) are distinguished from the ones that follow in this chapter. Edward Adams says "there is no indication of a temporal gap between the close of the tribulation and what is about to be described. What takes place 'after that tribulation' can only be the eschatological climax" (Adams, p. 146). The Greek word translated "coming" (ἐρχόμενον) in reference to Jesus can also mean "going." But this is clearly an allusion to Daniel 7:13, and Zechariah 14:5, so it fits better in the context to be translated as "coming." Adams also documents that this apocalyptic language was taken quite literally by the ancient people of that day when predicting the end of all things. They literally believed the sun and moon will be darkened, and that the stars will fall from the sky at the end of times.
28 “From the fig tree learn its lesson: as soon as its branch becomes tender and puts forth its leaves, you know that summer is near. 29 So also, when you see these things taking place, you know that he is near, at the very gates. 30 Truly, I say to you, this generation will not pass away before all these things take place. 31 Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away.
About verse 30, Adams writes, "It is virtually certain that 'this generation' means the generation living at the time of utterance. The time frame in this verse is thus the lifetime of Jesus' own contemporaries." (p. 164). Verse 31 is related to the whole discourse for even though "creation will be dissolved; Jesus word's will endure" (Adams p. 162). D. Sims as quoted by Adams: "A more clear expression of the end of the present cosmic order would be difficult to find" (p. 162).
32 “But of that day or that hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father. 33 Take heed, watch; for you do not know when the time will come. 34 It is like a man going on a journey, when he leaves home and puts his servants in charge, each with his work, and commands the doorkeeper to be on the watch. 35 Watch therefore—for you do not know when the master of the house will come, in the evening, or at midnight, or at cockcrow, or in the morning— 36 lest he come suddenly and find you asleep. 37 And what I say to you I say to all: Watch.”
While Mark's Jesus says this will happen in his generation, he also says no one knows what specific day or hour.

The point is that Jesus did not return as promised in his generation, period. Forget all the talk about not knowing the day nor the hour. We were told he was to return in his generation, and that generation has come and gone.


Evan said...

But of that day or that hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father.

This is a curious verse for the orthodox understanding of the trinity as well, is it not?

Isn't the orthodox teaching that Jesus will come to earth again? Is he really not gonna be given any notice by himself?

David said...


The standard Orthodox reply to this is to establish the dual nature of Christ (established at the Council of Chalcedon in 451 AD I think). 100% Human, 100% God. Makes perfect sense right? haha... I've always scratched my head at this verse, but those who assume that Jesus is speaking of His human nature smile and go on their way.

Evan said...

Seems to put the kibosh on the whole Logos section in John 1.

lee said...

In 2 peter we find a curious passage that, if I am correct, speaks to the growing belief ( or maybe I should say dis-belief) that Jesus had failed in his promises to return and to redeem.
I am not sure of the exact chapter and verse and I am quoting this passage from memory so please bear with me:

"Beloved, know this first, that a day with the Lord is as a thousand years and a thousand years is as a day. God is not slack concerning his promise as some count slackness, but is long suffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance."

If I remember the context of this passage correctly, "false" teachers had risen within the community of believers stating that, the elders, the older members of the group, that, many had "fallen asleep" (died) and yet Jesus' promise to return for them, his promise to redeem them had gone unfulfilled; therefore he was not coming back. As a result of these false teachers, many had abandoned their faith and the author of 2 peter was addressing this situation. This passage is often used by Arminian Christians who are trying to make the point that God wants everyone to be saved, however, this verse implies specificity. "God is not slack concerning his promise as some count slackness but is longsuffering toward (US), (COMMA) not willing that (any) should perish but that (all) should come to repentance." The words ANY and ALL are used in the context of (US.) Who is us?
Us in this situation are those of the church who had abandoned their faith because of these false teachers. If this is correct you have people of the latter first / early second century who were already questioning the validity of Jesus' claims.

Lee Randolph said...

I'm trying to lay low for a while but I just can't resist this one.

As far as I can see, Jesus was evasive about him being god incarnate. Sure you can cherry pick and 'interpret' a scripture to infer that he thought was god, but that is a poor communication priniciple and god is perfect, so god wouldn't be a poor communicator.

Jesus preached the jewish law. He was an apocalyptic preacher. His message was that everything was coming to an end and a new kingdom was coming. The job of the governers like pilate was to keep the peace. Evidently the first time Jesus set foot in a big city, he got arrested and crucified. Maybe he suspected that would happen, maybe he didn't.

In any case it was a surprise to those who thought he was the messiah. So the rationalizations and the theodicies began. It was easy to borrow neoplatonic/greek whatever you want to call it, ideas such as the logos to figure out how to reconcile this. Was he resurrected? The gospels don't agree on practically any aspect of it except that there was an empty tomb. That sounds like folklore to me.

There were plenty of place to grab concepts from. Greek philosophy, Pagan dying and rising gods, Kings legitimized by the gods, gods that were kings.

I can just imagine it now,
"Hey guys, you know how you think that gods can die and rise but you've never seen one? well I have, His name was jesus. Your god just sits there and doesn't do anything, he doesn't give you the ability to speak in tongues, and heal people but mine does. Listen to this......preach, preach, preach.....and its all going to happen when this crappy roman empire lead by the likes of nero and caligula get thiers! Its coming, He was the first fruits!"

It spread by word of mouth, slowly to the lower poor classes with not much to lose and everything to gain in a reversal of fortunes in a new kingdom (first is last, last is first), make an exclusive 'our god only' club out of it, behave better than 'those other people' and then use it as a 'feature' and presto you've got a religion with a different message than the prophet that started it. What would Jesus do? He suffered to his death, so we gotta act like jesus and we don't have anything to lose. Hey roman I'm not bowing to your gods cause if you kill me, I'm going to better place. Paulianity.

a pagan might say, "Damn those christians don't give up even when their being torn up by lions, or burned at the stake. They sure woudn't do that if it was false. It must be true, and jesus is coming so I better convert."

Sociology, gotta love it.

You can see some of this playing itself out in "the war on terror" right now.

"Those that don't remember the past are doomed to repeat it." George Santayana

Jamie Steele said...

Really bad exegesis!

For every Ed Adams there are thousands of other very intelligent scholars whom would use the Bible and destroy this interpretation.

I find it interesting how, people who by their own admission, don't have a personal relationship with Jesus, try to figure Him out.

It is rather amusing!

Lee Randolph said...

Hi Jamie,
I have personal relashionship with vishnu, and he sent an avatar that you think was jesus to tell people to repent. His other two aspects, brahma and shiva tell me that I need to point out to you that the three god/god in three parts concept predates judaism.

did you ever notice the similarity in the names Abraham and Brahma? Weird huh?

Anonymous said...

Jamie, Ed Adams is a Christian scholar. I divert from his argument at the end. He says the tribulation is an "indefinite" time period, but I don't see how that follows from the rest of what he said at all.

Bad exegesis in my opinion is a failure to do justice to this text and instead trying to rationalize it away due to the failed return of Jesus. That's the motivational factor in those who try to dispute what the plain meaning of the text is.

Let's say you were one of the disciples and that Jesus actually said these things. There would be no escaping what he meant. The fact that you deny this is based upon your desire to make Christianity plausible.

Of course then there is always the probability that if this is God's word and there are so many different Christian interpretations of this text, pre-mil, a-mil, post-mil, preterist, partial preterist, and dispensationalist, that God failed to effectively communicate to his followers about end times. Communication is a two-way street, is it not. And if God knows how we will interpret his so-called words, then he knew how to better communicate to us, that’s all. And if this is the case, God failed his people.

I've always considered that when there are a multitude of branches and interpretations of a particular theory that the theory itself is in crisis. Just like there are many interpretations of the ethical theory of Utilitarianism, and many interpretations of the atonement, so also is the case here. The fact that there are many eschatological theories about the eschaton and the parousia mean that the theory that Jesus (or the NT writers) was correct about the eschaton (in some fashion) is in crisis. I argue that the reason this is the case is because there is no eschaton nor parousia that we should expect no matter what the particular interpretation, and therefore the best theory is that Jesus and the NT writers were just wrong.

Evan said...

I find it interesting how, people who by their own admission, don't have a personal relationship with Jesus, try to figure Him out.

I find it interesting that you do have a "personal relationship with Jesus" but you don't even try to explain what is being said here. You simply toss a little scorn and do a little snicker.

To me this exposes the chasm at the center of your faith. You don't even understand it.

klatu said...

Starting with the assumption that all monotheism is false and especially christianity, that would also mean that any prediction or theological/scholastic interpretation of scriptural material to be in error. So any othodox reply is meaningless and must be by definition, error.

What no professional 'religious' might have expected is a return that intends to expose and brings down this theological fraud called tradition. The measure of a debasement within the human condition of which all mankind are heir.

Yet that is just what is getting started with the first apodictic religious proof ever to exist. For the first time in known or recorded history, a religious moral tenet exists offering access by faith to absolute proof for belief!

What both science and religion have agreed is impossible has now become possible. A testable proof of God.

This change in the 'faith' paradigm should be sufficient to blow the whole of monotheism right out of the water, starting with the last two thousand years called christianity.

To test or not to test that is the question?


Shygetz said...

I find it interesting how, people who by their own admission, don't have a personal relationship with Napoleon, try to figure Him out.

It is rather amusing!

The moral to jamie steele's tale: Leave the history to the schizophrenic.

Evan said...

Klatu, I went to the website you link, I wish I could have that time of my life back.

There have been tests for Christianity from the beginning but Christians just don't accept the evidence that results from the tests.

And Jesus said unto them, Because of your unbelief: for verily I say unto you, If ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye shall say unto this mountain, Remove hence to yonder place; and it shall remove; and nothing shall be impossible unto you. Mt. 17:20

If this text is true, Christians should have the deific powers of "Q" from ST:TNG, but they don't. In fact they have exactly the same mountain-moving-power (MMP) as any other religion's adherents or those with no religion -- none. So either there are no true Christians, or the Christian God is imaginary.

Really, this is a very easy test to run.

Go to a mountain. Express your faith in God and the sacrifice of his son, Jesus Christ. Ask the mountain to move to yonder place.


You may continue to watch for as long as you wish. The mountain will not move unless acted upon by some other force, just as would be predicted if your faith were imaginary.

Some may say that Jesus was being figurative or the quote is not accurate. If this is the case, the responsibility is on the believer to show a reliable to way to differentiate accurate quotes from inaccurate quotes, or to show when speech is clearly designed to be figurative as opposed to literal.

For example, is the speech that describes the empty tomb literal, while that that describes demons entering a herd of pigs figurative? Why?

richdurrant said...

I actually read the text to say that all those things would happen and all that would do is place hi return at the gate. He didn't say he would return but that it would be near. This also fits with saying that only the Father know's the hour of Christ's return. This also makes Evan's observation a little more curious since that would mean Christ has no idea when he'll return.

I have personal relashionship with vishnu, and he sent an avatar that you think was jesus to tell people to repent.

HOLY VISITATION!!! You too? Was the avatar Klatu/Keeanu Reeves too? No wonder yoyr laying low;)

I really shouldn't be blogging right now said...

Keep pulling on this thread of imminent eschatology -- in other of Jesus' sayings, in his parables, in his actions, in Paul's words, in Peter's, James', Jude's, and John's epistolary words, and in the Book of Revelation. It only gets worse for Christianity from here, as Jesus' false views form the basis of a false message that is universally echoed in the chorus of voices and actions of his earliest disciples.

Steven Bently said...

And Jesus said unto them, Because of your unbelief: for verily I say unto you, If ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye shall say unto this mountain, Remove hence to yonder place; and it shall remove; and nothing shall be impossible unto you. Mt. 17:20

I say if you had as much faith as a mustard seed, you could move a mustard seed!

I've never seen a mustard seed move just by faith alone.

Jamie Steele said...


Once again you miss the Biblical point

Mustard seeds grow- in context Jesus is talking about growing faith.
Not immature faith.

As a person grows in Christ they come to realize God is not Santa Claus.
God never said He would answer every prayer and heal all our diseases and give us a new car.

Paul prayed in faith 3 times for the thorn to be removed in his life and God said No "My Grace is sufficient for you."

Growing faith trusts God regardless of his answer.
A Maturing Christian realizes God's will is best which means we will have mountains to face...

When Jesus is talking about Mountains being moved this was a typical Jewish line of thought and speech.

I will quote:

when the Jews talked about removing mountains, they used it in reference to the ability to get past difficulties, or to remove difficulties. One writer says, "A great teacher who could really expound and interpret Scripture and who could explain and resolve difficulties was known as an uprooter or a pulverizer of mountains. To tear up, to uproot, to pulverize mountains were all regular phrases for removing difficulties. Jesus never meant this to be taken physically and literally. After all, the ordinary man seldom finds any necessity to remove a mountain. What He meant was, if you have faith enough, all difficulties can be solved and even the hardest task can be accomplished."
No He will see me thru it.

God is Good either way... That is faith.....

Joe said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Joe said...

Premise to keep in mind when trying to interpret God's word:

God reveals himself to the simple and in simplicity.

1 Corinthians 1:27

"But God has chosen the foolish things of the world to put to shame the wise, and God has chosen the weak things of the world to put to shame the things which are mighty"

This is a good example of that.

Jesus talks about taking note of the fig tree and its lesson of knowing when summer is near. He is directing his comments to the generation who will be alive and witnessing the signs he is speaking of at the end of all things. Therefore he says to THAT generation, YOU will not pass away before the end of all things.

Again, it is too simple for the average scholar to see. They look to hard. They break out there greek or reasoning to backup the conclusion they want to reach.

Why can't he be addressing the generation living at the time of all the signs mentioned and therefore it does not conflict in any way.


30 Truly, I say to you, this generation (the one present when all these signs occur) will not pass away before all these things take place.

John W Loftus Quotes:

About verse 30, Adams writes, "It is virtually certain that 'this generation' means the generation living at the time of utterance. The time frame in this verse is thus the lifetime of Jesus' own contemporaries." (p. 164)."

If I came to this blog with an aurgument that started "it is virtually certain..." and that was it, I would be laughed off the blog. I don't have the book, so who knows what reason he gave for this "virtual certainty".

The Bottom Line: I am sure a case could be made for both scenarios.

1. Jesus was addressing the people present at the utterance

2. Jesus was addressing the people alive in the era of the above mentioned signs.

Therefore, I would rate this an inconclusive try at debunking this round.

Anonymous said...

Joe, the reason it is virtually certain that Jesus meant an imminent return in his generation can best be seen by reading Bart Ehrman's book Jesus: Apocalyptic Prophet of a New Millenium. There is no other book which presents the evidence you need to consider.

Words must be considered in a context, and the prevailing context in Jesus' day was of an expected cataclysmic upheaval along with the institution of God's reign. It was in the air they breathed.

Don't just spout off here. Erhman's book is not large; it's reasonably priced; and it's written for the layman with scholarly precision. It's a must read on this topic. Before we continue get it and read it!

Evan said...


I think it's great that you realized that the Bible contains fairy stories that nobody could have been meant to take literally.

I hope you begin to figure out that there are more of them than just this one saying of Jesus.

Bloviator said...

I am, as ever, bemused by the statement of Jamie (and countless others before him) regarding the 'difference' between mature and immature faith. According to his reckoning, mature faith is nothing more than giving god the glory, even if your house burns down and all your family dies in the blaze. If everything is the big man's will, then why do you pray? Why do you come here and subject yourself and your ideas to ridicule, as it would seem that your god wants all of us to be this way? According to your idea of faith, what others do should make no difference to you. Hmm, sounds like one of those xtian arguments about us atheists -- "if you don't believe, why do you go on and on about it?" If the shoe fits...

I'm with John on this one. I have read most all of Ehrman's books and he makes a very calm and logical case for the existence of Jesus/Yeshua/Joshua as an apocalyptic preacher/prophet, of which there were many during that particular time of Roman occupation. And Evan makes a good point about the trinity -- not to mention the Nicene creed, with Jesus seated at the right hand of the Father... strange physical contortion that. Maybe that's why the J-man needed two animals to ride into Jerusalem.

Joe said...

I will now fulfill Mr Erhman's premise by claiming I think we are very close to the end of things. With that said, I believe we might have the unique opportunity to empirically prove or disprove what Jesus has to say about his return.

Why do I say such a thing?

A few unique facts about the day in which we live.

1. The dramatic increase in knowledge with the birth of the internet and the "information age". This is one of the signs listed in the prophecy in the book of Daniel.

Daniel 12:4

But thou, O Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book, even to the time of the end: many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall be increased.

Sure sounds like our busy world today. Global community running to and fro and there certainly hasn't been a knowledge increase such as we have seen in the last 10 years.

2. The reforming of the Jewish nation of Israel in 1948. The fig tree represents Israel as a nation. Therefore Jesus's command to watch the fig tree is very relevant for our age.

3. The appearance of the Elijah spoken of in the book of Malachi.

Malachi 4:5-6

Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the LORD: And he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the children, and the heart of the children to their fathers, lest I come and smite the earth with a curse.

Who was this prophet in the role of Elijah that God used to make a mark in current history?

visit this website to find out:

By the way, Jesus referenced the coming of this Elijah ministry in the Gospel of Matthew.

Matthew 17:10-13

10And his disciples asked him, saying, Why then say the scribes that Elias (Elijah) must first come?

11And Jesus answered and said unto them, Elias truly shall first come, and restore all things.

12But I say unto you, That Elias is come already, and they knew him not, but have done unto him whatsoever they listed. Likewise shall also the Son of man suffer of them.

13Then the disciples understood that he spake unto them of John the Baptist.

We see from this passage there is a claim of (2) Elijah ministries before the end. The 1st was John the Baptist announcing the 1st coming of Christ, the 2nd will announce the 2nd coming of Christ.

Notice how Jesus says "That Elias" is come already which means it was not the Elias the Scribes were looking for and is spoken of in Malachi. For John the Baptist didn't "restore" all things.

John, as a former Christian, you know that this is not a common belief among Christians. But the evidence for this ministry (explained at that website) is impressive just not well known.

The evidence includes:

1. A photograph with the appearance of a halo above the ministers head, which was found to be Authentic by George Lacy, and which to this day is in the Library of Congress.

2. A supernatural event covered in the May 1963 edition of Life Magazine and featured in Science Magazine

Jian^sia said...

1stly hi John,

2ndly, I'd like to debunk your thoughts on this subject. Thoughts can be debunked. But Jesus' words. We'll have to leave that one.

A)If Jesus said 'this' and meant that 'that' and not this present one, then He would have known that the generation would've died out.

B)If Jesus had really meant that generation as 'this' generation in the text, He would've come back already and nobody but the Jews and little more than the churches that Paul wrote to, would've been saved. The gospel wouldn't have travelled to America and got to you. And the world would be in quite another state right now.

Back then, the gospel had not travelled to every state and every person. Therefore the end did not come. The two predictions cannot contradict.

Dee Dee said...

For anyone remotely learning on how ignorantly wrong John is, I am going through these very issues on my podcast.

John won't listen - he thinks a short Bart Ehrman book settles the matter - going through things in a truly exegetical matter is just not his thing.

For those of you of a more scholarly bent, you may be interested in it.


Anonymous said...

Dee Dee, I suppose you meant to say how ignorant Ehrman is, right?



That best explains it, right?

If everyone was as smart as you were we'd all agree with you, right?

To think that way, or even approach thinking that way, is an ignorance beyond belief.

But keep thinking that way if it makes you feel better. LOL

Steven Bently said...

Joe wrote, 1. The dramatic increase in knowledge with the birth of the internet and the "information age". This is one of the signs listed in the prophecy in the book of Daniel.

That statement above is such an easy self-fullfilment of prophesy.

What are people going to do, live under a rock forever?

Someone discovered electricity and then invented a lightbulb, then someone invented a switch, a fuse, a refrigerator, a stove, a microwave oven, a TV, etc., etc.

This year in the USA, 200,000 people will die from smoking, 30,000 willl die from alcohol related accidents, 6000 will die from suicide.

How do I know this? I'm a latter day prophet from God.

Joe" 2. The reforming of the Jewish nation of Israel in 1948. The fig tree represents Israel as a nation. Therefore Jesus's command to watch the fig tree is very relevant for our age.

That statement above is beyond ridiculous.

There is absolutely no mention of America in the Bible, unless you happen to think that a donkey is reference to the Democratic Political Party.

Your whole post is beyond ridiculous, not worthy of further discussion.

Zen said...

So you won't post any comment of those who stand up for their belief? You know what? That's not right, but that's not the point. No one ever said Jesus would come back during His generation. NO ONE but God knows when the Second Coming will occur. Not even His Son. So please listen to what I say. I don't care if you never post this comment, but know that God is there. And He will come back. Try and prove that He won't.

Tracy said...

Have you heard of preterism? "Past in fulfillment." I was disillusioned w/ Christianity too (and still am in many ways because so many Christians fail to even CONSIDER the preterist view)

Preterism is the belief that Jesus returned in 70ad during the Roman Jewish War, and the 2nd Coming was all about putting an end to the old covenant and fully bringing in the new covenant. It was the end of the early believers' world, no doubt. No more 1300 year old Mosaic temple traditions because the temple was destroyed. If you read the Bible with "audience relevance" - the time statements are clear as a bell, and His coming was imminent to them. Obviously you see that, but many Christians read their Bibles as though it is directly addressed to 21st century believers. Preterism solves the puzzle of Jesus' apparent failed return. He returned, He's just not a physical body on a tangible thrown. His kingdom is within, it doesn't come with observation, and it is not of this world. I have a web site if you're interested:

Tracy said...

Have you considered Preterism? "Past in fulfillment"

Many Christians are disillusioned today with the predominant eschatological view of 'any day' return... more and more people are seeing that the imminent time statements cannot be stretched out for infinity anymore.

I believe Jesus returned during the Roman Jewish War of 66-73 AD. All the tribulation signs occurred during that time, and the "END" was about the last days of the old covenant,(the old heavens and earth) not planet earth.

Most people can't understand a past return because they are conditioned to believe that His return would destroy the planet. They are looking to satisfy their sensual cravings for a physical paradise. His Kingdom is here, it did not come with observation, it is not of this world, and it is within! - all things Jesus said about it! Old covenant=physical. New covenant=spiritual. I hope you'll consider looking into this, because it shows that Jesus kept His promise after all. We are just so far removed from what the early Christians understood the coming Kingdom to be!

Tracy said...

PRETERISM - Have you considered it? Jesus did not fail to return, the 2nd Coming was 70AD (Roman Jewish War).

We are just so far removed from what the early Christians understood the Kingdom to be. They knew it was an end to the old heavens and earth (old covenant) and the beginning of God's tabernacle being with men. (new heavens & earth (new covenant.)

Christians today look for a physical king on a tangible throne. Jesus said His kingdom was not of this world! Wouldn't come with observation! And it's within you!

You are correct about the time statements. They do indeed say that Jesus would return to that generation He spoke to. There is so much more at my new web site I hope you'll visit!