Wars and Rumors of Wars


Matthew 24:6 reads, “And ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars: see that ye be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet.” King James Version (KJV)

TranslationMatthew 24:6
ESVAnd you will hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not alarmed, for this must take place, but the end is not yet.
NASBYou will be hearing of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not frightened, for those things must take place, but that is not yet the end.
NIVYou will hear of wars and rumors of wars, but see to it that you are not alarmed. Such things must happen, but the end is still to come.
NLTAnd you will hear of wars and threats of wars, but don’t panic. Yes, these things must take place, but the end won’t follow immediately.

Wars and Rumors of Wars: Matthew Henry’s Concise Commentary

24:4-28 The disciples had asked concerning the times, When these things should be? Christ gave them no answer to that; but they had also asked, What shall be the sign? This question he answers fully.

The prophecy first respects events near at hand, the destruction of Jerusalem, the end of the Jewish church and state, the calling of the Gentiles, and the setting up of Christ’s kingdom in the world; but it also looks to the general judgment; and toward the close, points more particularly to the latter.

What Christ here said to his disciples, tended more to promote caution than to satisfy their curiosity; more to prepare them for the events that should happen, than to give a distinct idea of the events. This is that good understanding of the times which all should covet, thence to infer what Israel ought to do.

Our Saviour cautions his disciples to stand on their guard against false teachers. And he foretells wars and great commotions among nations. From the time that the Jews rejected Christ, and he left their house desolate, the sword never departed from them.

See what comes of refusing the gospel. Those who will not hear the messengers of peace, shall be made to hear the messengers of war. But where the heart is fixed, trusting in God, it is kept in peace, and is not afraid.

It is against the mind of Christ, that his people should have troubled hearts, even in troublous times. When we looked forward to the eternity of misery that is before the obstinate refusers of Christ and his gospel, we may truly say, The greatest earthly judgments are but the beginning of sorrows.

It is comforting that some shall endure even to the end. Our Lord foretells the preaching of the gospel in all the world. The end of the world shall not be till the gospel has done its work.

Christ foretells the ruin coming upon the people of the Jews; and what he said here, would be of use to his disciples, for their conduct and for their comfort. If God opens a door of escape, we ought to make our escape, otherwise we do not trust God, but tempt him.

It becomes Christ’s disciples, in times of public trouble, to be much in prayer: that is never out of season, but in a special manner seasonable when we are distressed on every side.

Though we must take what God sends, yet we may pray against sufferings; and it is very trying to a good man, to be taken by any work of necessity from the solemn service and worship of God on the sabbath day.

But here is one word of comfort, that for the elect’s sake these days shall be made shorter than their enemies designed, who would have cut all off, if God, who used these foes to serve his own purpose, had not set bounds to their wrath.

Christ foretells the rapid spreading of the gospel in the world. It is plainly seen as the lightning. Christ preached his gospel openly. The Romans were like an eagle, and the ensign of their armies was an eagle.

When a people, by their sin, make themselves as loathsome carcasses, nothing can be expected but that God should send enemies to destroy them. It is very applicable to the day of judgment, the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ in that day, 2Th 2:1.

Let us give diligence to make our calling and election sure; then may we know that no enemy or deceiver shall ever prevail against us.

Matthew 24:6 | Pulpit Bible Commentary

Ye shall hear (μελλήσετε ἀκούειν). Ye are about, ye are destined, to hear. “Futurum complicatum, audituri eritis” (Bengel). He addresses the apostles as representatives of the whole body of believers.

Wars and rumours of wars; i.e. wars near at hand, and distant wars of which the rumour only reaches you, but which threaten to approach and menace your peace (cf. Jeremiah 4:19).

The peace which reigned at Christ’s birth was rudely shattered after his death, though the wars before the destruction of Jerusalem were of no great importance.

We hear of an in. tended expedition against Aretas (Josephus, ‘Ant.,’ 18:05. 3), of one of Caligula against the Jews (ibid., 18:8. 2), both of which, however, came to nothing. Then there were certain insurrections in the reigns of Claudius (ibid., 20:5, 3) and Nero (ibid., 20:8. 6-10).

The Roman empire was disturbed; four emperors – Nero, Galba, Otho, and Vitellius – died by violence within a short space of time; the restless Parthians were a continual source of trouble. But these and such-like occurrences do little to exhaust the meaning of Christ’s prediction.

He is looking forward to a distant future, and sees with prophetic eye the state of warfare which has prevailed from the disruption of the Roman empire, and which shall continue unto the end.

See that ye be not troubled; rather, see, be ye not troubled, Look on it all, and yet be not affrighted. All these things (πάντα) must come to pass.

All that I announce is sure to occur, not from any absolute necessity, but because of men’s passions and perverseness, which will bring it to pass (see on Matthew 18:7; and James 4:1). The end is not yet. These signs might lead men to think that the final consummation was close at hand.

Our Lord warns against such a conclusion. St. Paul speaks of “the end” as occurring in Christ’s second advent (1 Corinthians 15:24).

Recent Posts