- “Therefore when you see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, standing in the holy place (whoever reads, let him understand)”
The Abomination of Desolation
The abomination of desolation (Matthew 24:15) is another one of those prophetic topics that meets with a lot of misunderstanding and a lot of speculation. Some Christians, including theologians have said that it was Antiochus Epiphanes who sacrificed a pig in the temple nearly 200 years before Christ was even born. But to just state one point, why would the Word of God put such emphasis on this event that has long past and no longer has any relevancy?
After Jesus stated to the Apostles in Matthew chapter 24 that the day would come when every stone of the temple would be torn down, the Apostles asked Jesus two questions. One was, when would this happen and the other was, what would be the signs of His coming.
And so Jesus responded by speaking of these two time periods. One was the destruction of the temple by the Roman army in 70 A.D just after His first coming, and the other time period was of course referring to His second coming.
Many have missed that Matthew 24 is one of those chapters that has a dual application. Jesus was paralleling the events and persecution that were about to unfold with the destruction of the temple in 70 A.D with events to unfold at the end of time just before His second coming.
The abomination of desolation was a warning of when one had to flee to the mountains to avoid persecution with the destruction of the temple in 70 A.D. (Matthew 24:16-22) but it was also to be a warning of when to flee to the mountains in the end of time to avoid persecution during the tribulation years before the second coming of Christ.
So who or what is the abomination of desolation becomes a very relevant question for those living in the end times to avoid death and persecution.
According to Albert Barnes Bible commentary, the abomination of desolation is a Hebrew expression that means an abominable or hateful destroyer. As also identified by this famous theologian, the first abomination of desolation is the Roman army and is so identified by the parallel gospel of Luke. (Luke 21:20)
The Roman army is further called the abomination on the account of the images of the emperor and the eagles carried in front of the legions and were regarded by the Romans with divine honors.
The book of Mark says, “standing where it ought not,” which means the same thing. So the meaning being is that, “when you see the Roman armies standing in the holy city or the Roman ensigns in the temple.”
Josephus stated that when the city was taken that the Romans brought their idols into the temple and placed them above the eastern gate and sacrificed to them there.
So while the abomination of desolation is known for the time of the destruction of the temple, it does not identify what the abomination of desolation is that parallels in the end times. This is of course what is most relevant to us living in the end days.
This site covers this topic in thorough detail so one can know when to flee to the mountains being the time of when persecution is about to begin.
So please read the following page titled what is the abomination of desolation for a detailed account on what we need to know to be prepared for the second coming of Christ.
- “Then he shall confirm a covenant with many for one week; But in the middle of the week He shall bring an end to sacrifice and offering. And on the wing of abominations shall be one who makes desolate, Even until the consummation, which is determined, Is poured out on the desolate.”