What Jesus Did! 'No One Knows!' — Matthew 24:36-41

Saturday, November 13, 2021

[Jesus continued:] "However, no one knows the day or hour when these things will happen, not even the angels in heaven or the Son himself. Only the Father knows.

"When the Son of Man returns, it will be like it was in Noah's day. In those days before the flood, the people were enjoying banquets and parties and weddings right up to the time Noah entered his boat. People didn't realize what was going to happen until the flood came and swept them all away. That is the way it will be when the Son of Man comes.

"Two men will be working together in the field; one will be taken, the other left. Two women will be grinding flour at the mill; one will be taken, the other left."

— Matthew 24:36-41 NLT

Key Thought

Jesus makes clear that the exact moment of the Son of Man's coming is not known to people or even to him. Whether he is referring to the destruction of Jerusalem or to his ultimate coming to bring time to an end is not so clear. To me, it seems fairly clear that while there will be very obvious signs of Jerusalem's imminent destruction, but Jesus' return is incalculable.

In fact, in the remainder of this chapter and in the first part of the next chapter, he tells his disciples three different stories to help them understand that they cannot know the exact time of his coming. He, himself, does not know the time of his own coming. Neither do the angels.

The bigger issue is the surprise and unexpectedness of his arrival. It will seem like any ordinary day with eating and drinking and marrying going on just like in ordinary times. No one will be expecting Jesus' return. But his disciples will be ready for it. It may be a surprise, but they won't be unprepared!

Today's Prayer

O Mighty God, Ruler of the Ages, please give me patience and attentiveness while I wait for the coming of Jesus. May I be found faithful and righteous when Jesus comes, and please help me as I seek to influence those in my family to not only love Jesus but to also anticipate his coming. In the name of Jesus, my coming King, I pray. Amen.

Related Scripture Readings

  • 1 Thessalonians 3:11-14
  • 1 Peter 2:11-12
  • Genesis 6:5-8, 22


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Illustration of Matthew 24:36-41 NLT — "However, no one knows the day or hour when these things will happen, not even the angels in heaven or the Son himself. Only the Father knows.


About This Devotional

What Jesus Did! is a series of one-year devotional guides through each gospel, using one short scripture passage each day and following the Gospel in sequential order. Each devotional consists of a scripture passage and a reflection and a prayer which open up the day's scripture and show how it challenges you to live for Jesus.

What Jesus Did! is written by Phil Ware and is available in book form.

Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright ©1996, 2004, 2007, 2013, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.