(Mt. 24:29-31, 32-35, 36-44, 45-51; Mk. 13:24-27, 28-31, 32-37; Lk. 21:25-28, 29-33, 17:26-30, 34-36, 12:41-48)
Chapter 24 of the Gospel of Matthew is entirely devoted to the most important topics of Christian eschatology. This episode tells about the coming of the Son of Man, presents the lesson of the fig tree, explains the unexpected day and hour, and the Parable of Faithful and Unfaithful Servants.
The Parable of the Ten Virgins has reached us only in the Gospel of Matthew. The context of the parable is the wedding ceremony well known to the Jews. As it happens during the wedding in earthly life when the groom comes unexpectedly, so it will be when the Kingdom of Heaven comes: the Bridegroom will appear unexpectedly. The parable teaches to be awake and ready, because the time and day of the coming of Christ the Bridegroom are unknown.
(Mt. 21:18-22, Mk. 11:13-14, 20-25)
This episode presents the story of the barren fig tree. The fig tree had a magnificent view and lush leaves, but had no fruits. Christ was hungry and did not find any fruit on the fig tree. And because of this the fig tree dried up. The fig tree symbolized a whole nation, that is, the Jewish people. But this example concerns each of us personally. Every Christian should look at the example of the fig tree and in order to bear fruit, should take the first step — to forgive all who have sinned against him or her.
An inscription in the ancient Greek temple at Delphi read: "Know thyself." This notion became one of the cornerstones of ancient philosophy. The issue of self-knowledge has always interested both philosophers and psychologists, and spiritual leaders. According to Christian understanding, self-knowledge leads us directly to the knowledge of God.
(Mt. 26:1-5, 6-13; Mk. 14:1-2, 3-9; Lk. 22:1-2; Jn. 11:45-53; 12:1-8)
The chief priests and scribes were looking for a way to arrest and kill the Lord Jesus Christ, but finally decided not to do this on Easter days, because a great noise would be made by the people and a riot would begin.
In the house of a leper named Simon, a woman anointed Jesus' feet and head with pure nard oil costing 300 denarii. One of Jesus’ disciples, Judas, reproached the woman, saying that it would be possible to feed the poor with the money from the sale of that oil.
Christ tells another parable, which presents the Last Judgment. During the Judgment, all the nations will appear before the Lord, and He will divide them into two and place them on His right and left sides. The parable explains how He is going to decide who will be on His right side and who on the left side.
(Mt. 25:14-31, Luke 19:11-28)
This episode is about a parable, whose characters received money from their master and were obliged to use it for profit. Those who earned extra money received praise, while those who earned nothing, fearing that they would lose their money, were punished. The same is true for spiritual life. Christians must use their gifts received from God and be useful to other people, and when they don’t do so, they should remember that this parable was told for them.
This episode presents the theme of the fear of death, when a human is horrified even by the thought of death. How to overcome this fear; why is fear born in humans even from the thought of death? Prayer, Holy Communion and a clear and correct planning of the day’s tasks—these are the main means to overcome the fear of death.
The episode is entirely dedicated to the Istanbul Convention, which has become a matter of interest for the Armenian people recently. It presents the dangers hidden in the Convention and how it may affect us if it is ratified by the National Assembly of the RA.
(Mt. 24:15-28; Mk. 13:14-23; Lk. 21:20-24)
The episode talks on the great abomination which was first mentioned in the Book of Daniel. The Bible warns about the appearance of false christs. These biblical prophecies had two meanings: they directly referred to both Christ's times and the end times.
(Mt. 24:1-3; 4-14, Mk. 13:1-3; 4-13, Lk. 21:5-7; 21:7-19)
Christ prophesies about the destruction of the Temple, and His disciples ask when it is going to happen or how the Lord's coming and the end of the world will happen.
The Synoptic Evangelists present all the events that will precede the end of the world, that is, the appearing of false messiahs and prophets, the rumors of wars and the wars themselves, the enmity between nations, the betrayals of the Christians and their persecutions for the name of Christ, the increase of wickedness, etc.
(Mt. 23:33-36, 37-39; Lk. 13:34-55)
Only the Evangelist Matthew has the small episode in which the Lord Jesus Christ condemns the Jews for persecuting, torturing and killing the prophets, sages and scribes that had been sent to them.
The weeping over Jerusalem was a prophecy of the destruction of Jerusalem. Why does Matthew present all of this to us, and what instruction and advice does it have for us, modern Christians?
The episode discusses the woes of the 23rd chapter of the Gospel according to Matthew. This series of seven woes presents both the hypocrisy of the Pharisees and experts of Jewish law, and the main shortcomings of the Christians of all times, especially of those Christians who consider themselves people who really live in faith.
(Mt. 23:6-12; Mk. 12:38-42; Lk. 20:45-47)
Christ teaches not to call anyone teacher and not to be called so, because there is only one teacher for all. He also forbids to call anyone father. What does Christ mean when teaching this, and in what sense do we use these words today when addressing people?
(Mt. 22:41-46, 23:1-5, Mk. 12.35-37, 38-42, Lk. 20:41-44, 45-47)
This episode touches upon the topic of one of the Lord’s titles, "Son of David," and explains why king David himself called his descendant Messiah "Lord."
The second part is about listening and observing the teachings of the Pharisees and experts in Jewish law, but not imitating their deeds and lives.
(Mt. 22:34-40, Mk. 12:28-38; Lk. 10:25-37)
An expert in the Jewish Law asked the Lord Jesus Christ: "What is the greatest commandment, or how can one attain the Kingdom of God?" He himself knew the answer, of course. It was: you should love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul and strength, and should also love your friend. In order to justify himself, the man who asked the question asked a second question: "Who is then my friend? And the Lord answered by telling the Parable of the Good Samaritan.
(Mt. 22:23-33; Mk. 12:18-27; Lk. 20:27-40)
This episode is about the resurrection of the dead. Since the Sadducees did not believe in the resurrection, they asked Jesus whose wife would be at the time of the resurrection the woman who married each of the seven brothers in turn? According to Jewish law, when one brother married and died without an heir, his younger brother was obliged to marry his deceased brother’s wife.
(Mt. 22:15-22, Mk. 12:13-17, Lk. 20:20-26)
Pharisees and Herodians tested the Lord Jesus Christ, asking whether it was lawful to pay the imperial tax to Caesar or not. According to Mosaic Law, it was not allowed to pay a tax to an idolatrous king. If Christ answered: yes, it is lawful to pay the tax, He would be against the Law, while if He opposed the idea of paying the tax, He would be handed over to the Roman prefect as someone who opposed the Emperor.
(Mt. 22:1-14, Lk. 14:7-24)
Jesus instructs those invited to feasts not to pick the places of honor, but to show humility. He also commands not to invite relatives and the rich to lunch or dinner, but to invite the poor and strangers.
The second part of this episode presents the Parable of the Wedding Feast. Those who had beforehand agreed to take part in the celebration refused to do so on the wedding day.
We are also invited by the Lord to sit at the table in the Kingdom of Heaven. How do we react to and prepare for this invitation?
(Mf. 21:28-32, 21:33-46; Mk. 12:1-12; Lk. 20:9-19)
The first part of this episode reflects on the Parable of the Two Sons. In the parable, the first son promises to go and work in the garden, but does not go; while the second son first refuses, but finally, regretting, goes and works.
The second parable presented is that of the wicked husbandmen. They rented a garden, a winepress and a tower. They had to give part of the fruits to the owner of the vineyard, but refused to do so and even killed the only son of the owner.
At the end of the parable, Christ identifies Himself with the stone that had been rejected by all the builders, whereas it was the stone to become the cornerstone for the entire building.
(Mt. 21:23-27; Mk. 11:27-33; Lk. 20:1-8)
Shortly after the Lord Jesus Christ overthrew the tables of the dove sellers and money changers and preached in the Temple, He was asked about His authority. He did not answer it, but asked another question: "Was John's baptism from humans or from heaven?" If the Pharisees had answered that it was from heaven, Jesus would ask: "Then why didn't you believe him?" While if they said it was from humans, they were afraid of the people, because the latter considered John a prophet.
(Mt. 21:9-17, Mk. 11:15-19, Lk. 19:45-48)
After entering Jerusalem, the Lord Jesus Christ came to the Temple and drove out the money changers and dove sellers. Citing the words of Isaiah 56:7, Jesus said that the Lord's house must be a house of prayer, not a den of robbers.
After that, the blind and lame came to Jesus, and the Lord healed them. The children blessed the Lord with the words, "Blessed is the Son of David." Through these words, the prophecy of Psalm 8:3 was fulfilled.
(Mt. 21:1-11, Mk. 11:1-11, Luke 19:28-40)
The final week of Jesus' life begins with His entry into Jerusalem. Our Lord entered Jerusalem as a king bringing the tidings of love and peace. Contrary to the expectations of the crowd, Christ the Messiah did not become a military figure who would raise the Jews to power, but humbly came to Jerusalem to sacrifice Himself for the salvation of mankind.