Matthew 24:43 But know this, that if the goodman of the house had known in what watch the thief would come, he would have watched, and would not have suffered his house to be broken up.
44 Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh.
45 Who then is a faithful and wise servant, whom his lord hath made ruler over his household, to give them meat in due season?
46 Blessed is that servant, whom his lord when he cometh shall find so doing.
In verse 42, Jesus warned the disciples of the importance of watching. That warning is important for all people in any generation. The immediate application of this watchfulness is in the context of the Tribulation, and even more specifically, to the last half of the Tribulation. However, the Bible does warn those who are saved to be watchful at any time. We find the Greek word translated as watch here, 23 times in the New Testament. Thus we can know that watchfulness is important in this regard for every generation. Those watching in the context of Matthew 24&25 are those watching for the return of the Lord Jesus Christ at the end of the Tribulation.
In order to be watching, the person needs to be saved. The person needs to know what to be watching for. Our P.M. tells us we need to be watching for “climate change”. He has convinced his entire party to watch this. He has also convinced the opposition parties that this is important. There is some disagreement as to how to watch, but they are all convinced this is a problem. They are fools and many citizens have also bought into this lie.
Jesus was teaching about the end of the Tribulation time. During the Tribulation the antichrist will be seeking to impose his wicked ways upon all of mankind. He will be much more forceful in doing so than our P.M. is now. Those who enter the Tribulation will all be lost people and they will buy into the lies of the antichrist because they rejected the truth prior to the Tribulation.
God will raise up the 144,000 Jewish men to be a faithful witness during that time. He will also have His two witnesses who will be a great interference for the antichrist. There will be great rejoicing when they will be killed. There will be great fear when God raises them up and takes them out of this world in full view of all.
There will be people who will get saved during the Tribulation and those who do, will suffer persecution to a greater extent than we do now. Those who are saved during that time need to be watchful. They need to be paying attention to the truth and they need to reject the lies of the antichrist and his goons.
Watchfulness requires the new birth and it also requires faithful study of God’s Word. That also will be a greater challenge during the Tribulation time. In Hebrews 10 we noted the challenge given to saints now to assemble together. Many are being very careless with regard to this now. We still have the freedom to travel and we can meet with fellow believers in a good local church. Many are not interested even though they claim to be saved. Soon, this freedom will be gone. Those who are saved today need to be watchful just as those who will be saved during the Tribulation time. There are many false teachers who are spreading their false theories. Many people are gullible and willing to believe what these false teachers are saying because they do not read the Scriptures and they lack discernment.
In verse 43, Jesus continued to teach the importance and the relevance of watchfulness during the last half of the Tribulation. The goodman would be the householder. We live in a world today that has more and more surveillance all the time. We are also living in a time of increasing crime. People are putting more cameras to try to protect themselves.
Jesus is talking about something far more important here than watching our earthly possessions. He is talking about spiritual watching. He is talking about the reality that the Tribulation is coming to an end and the antichrist will be stopped and Jesus Christ will be stopping him. It is important for the Jews in particular to be prepared for the Lord’s coming. Jesus has already talked about not being deceived. He has also warned of false teachers who would be telling people that Christ is here or there, when in fact He has not returned yet. The Jews, according to our context, needed to listen to the truth and they needed to be saved and ready to enter the Millennium. That is what Jesus said in verse 44. Those who would be alive at that time needed to be ready.
Again, we can make application of this to our time as the disciples could to their time as well. The people of Noah’s day needed to be ready for the coming flood, but they ignored the warnings and they perished. The nation of Israel needed to listen to and believe God’s Word but they ignored it and adopted idolatry and the northern tribes went into Assyrian captivity and the southern tribes went into Babylonian captivity. Death comes suddenly for each person and many live carelessly and are not ready to die and they perish and end up in hell.
In Luke 16 Jesus gave the account of the rich man who ignored the truth and died and was in hell. Lazarus was resting in Abraham’s bosom. The rich man wanted Moses to send Lazarus back to warn his brothers to pay attention to the truth and believe in the Lord Jesus Christ for salvation. It was too late for him and his brothers had the same Word that he rejected and they could read it and they could hear it preached and they could believe It if they chose to. It is important for each person to be ready for the Lord’s return.
In verses 45-46 Jesus spoke of the faithful and wise servant. The faithful and wise servant is the one who honours God and is an honest administrator of that which the Lord has given to him. Those who fail to value the truth and squander it will be sorry. Those who are saved and endeavour to know the truth and then seek to help others to know the truth will be rewarded.
It is important to remember that Jesus is not teaching works salvation. Salvation is always by faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. The wise servant is the one who understands the need to be saved and he or she gets saved and then serves the Lord faithfully as He guides them along.
Verse 46 reinforces the fact that the saved person is saved to serve the Lord. That is true now and it will be true in the Tribulation time as well.
Life will not be easy during the Tribulation time for those who are saved. In particular the last half will be extremely difficult for the saved. The antichrist will seek to kill any Jew and he will also seek to kill anyone who does not accept him as God. Those who are truly saved will be targeted by him. Of course no one will buy or sell without his mark on them.
The faithful servant will refuse that mark and will be busy doing the Lord’s work at that time. They will be witnessing and praying and honouring God in their lives. They will need to flee into the mountains and they will find it difficult to survive. They will be looking for the return of the Lord Jesus Christ.
Jesus promised blessings to that servant who will be faithful in serving the Lord when He comes back. It is never a vain thing to serve the Lord. There are many vain things in this world. However, serving the Lord faithfully is of great value.