We ARE The Last Generation – how much time is left?
The Parable of the Fig Tree
“Now learn a lesson from the fig tree. When its buds become tender and its leaves begin to sprout, you know without being told that summer is near. Just so, when you see the events I’ve described beginning to happen, you can know his return is very near, right at the door. I assure you, this generation will not pass from the scene before all these things take place. Heaven and earth will disappear, but my words will remain forever.” (Matthew 24:32-35)
Let’s take a closer look at the meaning of this parable…
“Now learn the parable of the fig tree …”
“I (God) found Israel like grapes in the wilderness; I saw your fathers as the first ripe in the fig tree at her first time.” (Hosea 9:10)
In the above verse, God compares Israel to grapes and the fathers to fruits of the fig tree. Jesus often used fig tree in parabolic form when communicating things about Israel, and there are several other verses to confirm this (Joel 1:6-8, 12; Luke 13:6-9; Jeremiah 24; Jeremiah 29:16-19). Virtually every theologian will agree that in the Bible, Israel is referred to as the fig tree. In addition, the verse above is almost a direct parallel to what Jesus said in Matthew 24.
“When its buds become tender and its leaves begin to sprout, you know without being told that summer is near…”
The verb “know” here is also in the imperative mood in the Greek, which means it is a command. “He is near…” translated estin in Greek, literally means the time when the Lord is coming to establish His kingdom.
“I assure you, this generation will not pass from the scene before all these things take place.”
When Jesus says “this generation,” the Greek word for generation here is genea. Genea refers to a particular age or time. Combined with the statement “all these things take place,” which would include all the events of the seven year Tribulation – everything that Jesus had been talking about…the birth pains (vs. 4-14)…the abomination of desolation (vs. 15)…the need to flee because of the impending dangers (vs. 16-28)…and the catastrophic chaos of the universe (vs. 29), brings us to the conclusion that the generation in existence when Israel was formed will not pass away (die) before the Second Coming.
So what does this full verse mean? It simply means that the generation that sees Israel reborn and the fig tree “put out its leaves” is the same generation that will see the completion of the Tribulation and the return of Jesus Christ (Second Coming). Remember, this verse is in the imperative mood, which means it is a command for us – not just a parable to be overlooked!
And guess what? Israel, a country that had not really existed as a separate nation for nearly 2,500 years, was declared a new sovereign state by an act of the United Nations on May 14, 1948!
How long is a generation?
“The days of our lives are seventy years; and if by reason of strength they be eighty years, yet is their labour and sorrow; for it is soon cut off, and we fly away.” (Psalms 90:10)
It’s interesting that, even though Moses wrote Psalms 90 over 3,000 years ago, and he lived to be 120 years old, today, 70 years is almost exactly the average life expectancy of human beings worldwide. The average life span of those living today in Israel is between 70 and 80 years! It is reasonable to conclude that the generation Christ was talking about in the parable of the fig tree will also be 70 to 80 years in length.
In fact, Christ’s parable of the Fig Tree in Matthew 24:32-35 and Moses’ length of a generation in Psalms 90:10 seem to go hand in hand! Labour and sorrow is figurative of the Great Tribulation, that is soon cut off thus Jesus ends it when He comes riding on a horse to Armageddon battle and we fly away.
On 14th of May 1948, the state of Israel was proclaimed a nation! Since 1948, we have seen Israel put forth leaves on her tender branches both economically, military, financially and spiritually, and Israel has become a world force always on news all over the world. If the leaves of the fig tree can be said to have sprung forth in 1948, then the generation is 70 years old this year!
If we use a generation of 80 years (with years of labor and sorrow) according to Psalms 90:10, then the year for 1948 generation to be over is (1948 + 80 years): 2028. Taking into account the seven-year Tribulation period, that would place the latest year for rapture and the beginning of the great tribulation to occur as (2028 – 7): 2021. That’s only 3 years from now!
I am not attempting in any way, shape, form or fashion to set a day and hour for the return of Jesus but I am revealing the season for His return. While the Bible says we don’t know the day or hour, it certainly says that we know the times and seasons (1 Thessalonians 5:1-10). Otherwise, what was the point of giving signs that would indicate His coming was near?
The time of the “last days” that Jesus refered to, is not “in the future” and it’s not “coming soon”. It is here right now. Stay alert, Jesus is coming! (Click to Source)