John 14 vs. Matthew 24
(Concerning my discussion on John 14:1-3. See chapter 6, John 14:1-3)
If it is true that only near the end of His [Jesus'] ministry did he begin to speak to us (the Church), which John 14-16 seems to be, then there can be a difference between Matt 24, 25 and John 14. I think of passages where
Christ began to tell the disciples that He would Die, be buried and rise again (Matt 16). His ministry does seem to change after He informs the disciples of this reality.
If this indeed the case, Matt 24-25 does take place near the end of Christ's ministry. John 14-16 has been labeled as the "Upper Room Discourse" as this was given to the disciples in the upper room immeadiately after the eating of the last supper. Matthew 24-25 transpires immediately before this time, as the last supper takes place in chapter 26. So the time transpiring between these two events is merely a few days at most. You stated that Jesus ministry changes after Matt 16. If this is so, Matt 24-25 takes place much after this point. It also is interesting that the word "church" is found only twice in all of the gospels and both times in the book of Matthew and both tmes before chapters 24-25 (16:18 and 18:17).
Other differences may be: In Matthew, the disciples were the ones who asked/probed for answers. They began by pointing out the Temple construction. In John, Jesus wanted to leave the disciples with what He
thought most appropriate before He left. What they really needed to know. The contexts of the two may (I say may) give validity to the belief that the substance of the two may be different.
That is an interesting observation. However (in Matthew) they did ask Jesus about what would accompany his return and he went on to describe the Great Tribulation, followed by a description of his coming in the clouds which bears so much resemblance to the rapture passage (1 Thess. 4:13-18). These were the disciples, the foundation of the church (Eph. 2:20). I just find it hard to believe that what he told them would not apply to us, especially when four chapters later he told them to make disciples of all the nations and teach, teaching them to observe all that he had commanded them (28:19).
If MR. Pentecost uses passages in the epistles to teach imminency also, then at least I don't have a problem with having a vital doctrine based on one scripture only. I think you would agree that doing so, like Mormons do
with the "baptism of the dead" is quite awful.
Yes, I would definitely agree with you on that. But, as I tried to show in my response to Mr. Pentecost, I do not believe that the scriptures really support his position. They show an expectancy, but do not demand an "any moment" expectancy. I really do believe that Paul intends to refute this type of idea in 2 Thess. 2:1-3.