Matthew 24: The Second Coming

New Testament: Student Study guide, (2003), 32–33

After testifying against the Jewish leaders who had rejected Him, Jesus said that they would not see Him again until He came in glory as prophesied (see Matthew 23:39; Joseph Smith—Matthew 1:1; see also Psalm 118:26, which Jesus quoted in part). Jesus and His disciples went to the Mount of Olives, where one can see the city of Jerusalem—and especially the temple. There He spoke of great destructions that would come to the city and the temple. Because of what Jesus said, His disciples asked Him when the temple would be destroyed, what the signs of His Second Coming would be, and when the end of the world would be (see Matthew 24:3; Joseph Smith—Matthew 1:4), apparently wondering if there was a connection between those three events. The rest of Matthew 24 contains answers Jesus gave to their questions.The Joseph Smith Translation of Matthew 24 is found in the Pearl of Great Price and is called Joseph Smith—Matthew. Because we have the Prophet’s inspired additions and corrections, the “Understanding the Scriptures” and the “Studying the Scriptures” sections below are based on Joseph Smith—Matthew instead of Matthew 24.

Other Accounts of What You Read in Matthew 24 (and Joseph Smith—Matthew)

Matthew 24 (Joseph Smith—Matthew 1)—Mark 13; Luke 21:5–36

Understanding the Scriptures

Joseph Smith—Matthew 1

Desolate (v. 2)Empty, destroyed 
Afflicted (v. 7)Put in trouble or pain of some kind 
Them that give suck (v. 16)Women who are still nursing their babies 
Tribulation (vv. 18, 21, 33, 36)Painful troubles 
Befallen (v. 19)Happened 
Flesh (v. 20)Family of people 
The elect’s sake (vv. 20, 23, 29)For the benefit of those chosen by the Lord for special privileges and responsibilities (see Bible Dictionary, “election,” pp. 662–63) 
Carcass (v. 27)Dead body 
Pestilences (v. 29)Diseases that affect crops as well as diseases that affect people 
Divers (v. 29)Different 
Generation (v. 34)Period of time 
Tribes (v. 36)Groups of people 
Treasureth up (v. 37)Keeps and treats as a very valuable thing 
Due (v. 49)Correct, appropriate 
Asunder (v. 54)In half 
Portion (v. 54)Place 
girl studying

Treasure the word and you will not be deceived.

Matthew 24:15—“The Abomination of Desolation, Spoken of by Daniel the Prophet”


Jesus Christ prophesied of the destruction of Jerusalem.

Matthew 24:15 refers to prophecies made by the Old Testament prophet Daniel in which he foresaw wickedness leading to destruction in Jerusalem. He seemed to indicate that the destruction would happen in an “abominable” way, suggesting that not only would there be destruction, which is bad enough, but it would be a very distasteful destruction, perhaps even at the hands of those who are despised. There are at least two separate fulfillments of this “abomination of desolation.” One was approximately A.D.  70 when the Romans destroyed Jerusalem and the temple, and another will be in the last days before the Second Coming of Jesus Christ. For more information, see “abomination of desolation” in the Bible Dictionary (p. 601).

Studying the Scriptures

Do activity A as you study Matthew 24.

Activity A iconSigns and Promises

Joseph Smith—Matthew 1:4 contains questions Jesus’ disciples asked Him. Verses 5–20 contain the answer Jesus gave to their first question, which concerned the destruction of the temple, and verses 21–55 contain his answer to their other questions concerning His Second Coming and the destruction of the wicked.

  1. 1.

    Make a chart in your notebook like the one below. Fill it in with information you find in Joseph Smith—Matthew. After each item you list, write the verse number where you found that item.


Destruction of the temple in Jerusalem (vv. 5–20)

The Second Coming of Jesus Christ (vv. 21–55)




Promises to the Righteous



  1. 2.

    The Second Coming of Jesus Christ worries and even frightens some people. Based on what you read in Joseph Smith—Matthew, what would you say to give hope to a person who feels this way? Refer to specific verses in what you write.