Don’t Resist

Studying the twenty-fourth chapter of Matthew has affected me in ways that I had not anticipated.  Aside from some of the details of the chapter that are prone to easily confuse, the principles of the chapter are clear and convicting.

For instance, since studying this chapter, I find myself throughout the day often thinking about the return of Jesus.


Historical References

When I was growing up, people in my life would often make references to historical events that I didn’t really understand.

I remember my grandparents talking about what it was like living in Southeast Oklahoma during the Great Depression, the setting for Steinbeck’s “The Grapes of Wrath,” before the Joad family began their journey west to California.


The Main Points of New Testament Prophecy

There are two main points of the prophecy that we read in the New Testament: Repentance and Encouragement.

 As we continue to study the prophecies in Matthew, these two points are what I would have you to keep in the forefront of your mind, especially when you have moments of uncertainty or confusion.


Be Kind

In my research regarding Matthew chapter twenty-four, I have come to a somewhat startling conclusion, one that I didn’t expect.

The conclusion that I have drawn is that in regards to this most disputed chapter is that there are two types of scholars, mean and kind.


The Age of Regurgitation

When I was in high school, one of my favorite pastimes was arguing about all things sports related with my friends.  Before classes began for the day, there was a bench in a particular hallway where we would sit or stand around discussing the professional sports that we watched on tv the previous night.


Controversial Texts

In our study of Matthew, we’re entering into a couple of chapters that are among the most misunderstood, chapters twenty-four and twenty-five.  These chapters are full of words and phrases, such as, sign of Your coming, end of the age, tribulation, abomination of desolation, etc.


Above All

Love is deliberate.  It doesn’t happen by accident.  It’s true that some people are easier to love than others, but even when it comes to the easiest person to love, it must be a deliberate action on our behalf.

The kind of love that I’m referring to is the greatest of loves that the Bible refers to, that love that the Greek language calls agape.


The Return of Jesus

There’s so much bad news, I thought I would share some good news: Jesus is coming back!

I realize that this is no shocking revelation to you, but I do believe we should be thinking about it more, talking about it more, looking forward to it more and preparing for it more.

When I think about Jesus returning, the troubles of this world shrink significantly.  They’re still there, but not nearly as foreboding.


Necessary Teaching

In the last public teaching that Jesus did before he was crucified, much of his teaching was denouncing the teaching of the scribes and Pharisees.


Reward, or no?

There’s a kind of worship that Jesus despises.  He despises it because it has nothing to do with worship of God and everything to do with the worship of self. 

In Matthew 6:2, 5 & 16 Jesus warns us against this kind of worship –

“So when you give to the poor, do not sound a trumpet before you, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, so that they may be honored by men. Truly I say to you, they have their reward in full…“When you pray, you are not to be like the hypocrites; for they love to stand and pray in the synagogues and on the street corners so that they may be seen by men. Truly I say to you, they have their reward in full… 16 “Whenever you fast, do not put on a gloomy face as the hypocrites do, for they neglect their appearance so that they will be noticed by men when they are fasting. Truly I say to you, they have their reward in full.

Giving, praying and fasting are all good, religious practices.  They are things that we should all be doing.  The problem is when we do these, or any other forms of worship, so that we will receive the praise of other people. 

Doing these good things are not, in and of themselves, wrong.  It’s not even wrong to be seen doing them.  After all, Jesus also said in Matthew 5:16,

16 Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven.

But do you see the fundamental difference?  It all comes down to your motive.  One person does what they do to gain the praise and admiration of other people.  Another does what they do so that God gets the glory.  The deeds may look identical, indeed, often times the deeds are identical, but the heart motivation cannot be seen.

What are we to do?  I love the quote from the Scottish theologian A.B. Bruce, in which he says, “We are to show when tempted to hide and hide when tempted to show.”  

This can be challenging to always pull off, but it’s certainly worth the effort.  Do your best to always remember that people are never to be the audience of our worship.  God is supposed to be our audience.  Who is your audience?  Who do you want to be rewarded by, God or man?

Much Love!

Wes LeFlore (918) 607-8489 or