ESV - 28 Wherever the corpse is, there the vultures will gather.
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I don't know to what extent this expanded wording is justified by the original Greek text of the Gospel, but the New Living Translation of this verse (as contained on the website biblehub.com) puts it as, "Just as the gathering of vultures shows there is a carcass nearby, so these signs indicate that the end is near." In other words (given the context), to me this would mean both that, when people either falsely claim that they are the returned Messiah, or falsely speak of places where the returned Messiah can be found, it means that the Messiah's actual return is near; and also that His return will not be hidden (so that people would have to be told about it, or would be in confusion or uncertainty about it), but will be as obvious as the flashing of lightning, or as the presence of a carcass is to carrion birds.
When Christ comes to judge the nations (Matt 25:31) he will come with his holy angels. Likewise, at his first coming there was an angel of the LORD, and a multitude of the heavenly host (angels) appearing to the shepherds. (Luke 2: 8- 5). So, the appearance of many angels would be one definitive sign of Christ's second coming, something no impostor will be able to imitate. Angels in the bible are associated with eagles, such as in Rev 4: 7, and Ezek 1: 5-13, among others. In my opinion, the vultures (better translated as eagles, as in the King James version) represent the angels accompanying Christ's second coming; the corpse represents Christ himself, who was once dead, but is now living forever. The whole verse is an metaphor for what will be seen just after the great light of the preceding verse (Matt 24:27).
Two of the greatest rules of biblical interpretation are context and scripture interpret scripture. The context here is the second coming: Matthew 24:27 For as the lightning comes from the east and shines as far as the west, so will be the coming of the Son of Man. The parallel passage (scripture interprets scripture) to this in Luke adds more to help us understand. Again Jesus is speaking of his coming: Luke 17:34-35 34 I tell you, in that night there will be two in one bed. One will be taken and the other left. 35 There will be two women grinding together. One will be taken and the other left.”: The disciples then jump in and ask: Luke 17:37a And they said to him, “Where, Lord?” They ask Jesus for further clarity. The disciples ask he where Lord, where will they be taken. Jesus says to them: Luke 17:37b “Where the corpse is, there the vultures will gather.” Those who will be taken will go to where corpses rot and the vultures gather to feast upon their carrion, their dead, rotting flesh. This is a picture of Judgment. This is that last day when Jesus will come and destroy all of His enemies. The ones taken when Jesus returns will be taken to judgment. Those that remain will be with the Lord forever. There is another picture of this event given to us in Revelation: Revelation 19:17-18 17 Then I saw an angel standing in the sun, and with a loud voice he called to all the birds that fly directly overhead, “Come, gather for the great supper of God, 18 to eat the flesh of kings, the flesh of captains, the flesh of mighty men, the flesh of horses and their riders, and the flesh of all men, both free and slave, both small and great.” And then down to the last verse in the chapter: Revelation 19:21 And the rest were slain by the sword that came from the mouth of him who was sitting on the horse, and all the birds were gorged with their flesh. When Jesus comes back, all those that do not know Jesus, all those that hate God, all who are his enemy, will be removed and judged, taken away and feasted upon by flesh eating birds. This is a picture of the last day when the Lord will separate the sheep from the goats. The sheep will go onto eternal bliss and the the goats to eternal punishment (Matthew 25). Matthew 24:28 depicts the great judgment upon those who do not love his coming and they will be taken away for eternity forever away from the presence of the Lord.
My opinion is that Jesus is pointing to many who will run to look for false prophets. Many will run to the false prophets and Christs where there is no life but deception and so Jesus warns his disciples not to be like them. Majority is not always right. They must therefore follow the warning of their Lord not to run after those claiming miracles but instead take it as a sign of the near return of the Lord. This would mean they needed to be watchful, discerning, and prepared.
Matthew 24:28, Wherever there is a carcass, there the vultures will gather. The scriptural text, is a message signifying the general saying that "like begets like", and also vulture being a bird feeds specifically on harmless dead entity. Therefore when a believer is found in a wrongful association, its like subjecting oneself to a situation beyond the natural control and outside the reach of the Christ, our Lord, and saviour. In Christianity, the gospel or the Good News, is the news of the coming of the Kingdom of God, and of Jesus's death on the cross and resurrection to restore people's relationship with God. It may also include the descent of the Holy Spirit upon believers and the second coming of Jesus. Luke 2:10, But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid! For behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people". Therefore a believer needs to build his faith and stronger towards the Lord. Spiritual growth is the process of becoming more and more like Jesus Christ. When we place our faith in Jesus, the Holy Spirit begins the process of making us more like Him, conforming us to His image. Spiritual growth is perhaps best described in 2 Peter 1:3-8, which tells us that by God's power we have “everything we need” to live lives of godliness, which is the goal of spiritual growth.
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