Luke 17:20-37

Jesus talks about the time when God will rule

20 Then some Pharisees asked Jesus a question. ‘When will the kingdom of God begin here?’

Jesus replied, ‘When God begins to rule here, people will not see it with their eyes. 21 Nobody will say, “Look everyone! God is ruling here,” or “Look! God is ruling over there.” No, it is not like that. God is already ruling in the lives of his people.’

22 Jesus said to his disciples, ‘The time will come when you will very much want to see me, the Son of Man, return to the earth. But you will not see that day. 23 People may say to you, “Look, there he is!” or “Here he is!” But do not go out with them to look. 24 When lightning shines, it quickly makes the whole of the sky light from one side to the other. It will be like that on the day when the Son of Man returns. 25 But before this happens, the people of today will refuse to accept me. And I will feel much pain.

17:24Jesus calls himself the Son of Man in verses 22-30.

26 Remember what happened when Noah was alive. It will be like that at the time when the Son of Man returns to the earth. 27 In Noah's time, people were eating their meals every day. Men and women continued to marry. They continued to do all this until the day when Noah went into his boat. Then it rained for a long time and there was deep water everywhere. The water killed all the people.

17:26We can read about Noah in Genesis 6.

28 The same kind of thing happened when Lot was alive. People in the city called Sodom were eating their meals every day. They were buying and selling things. They were planting their seeds and they were building their houses. 29 But one day Lot went away from Sodom. On that same day, God caused it to rain fire and burning stones from the sky. This killed all the people in Sodom.

17:28We can read about Lot in Genesis 19.

30 It will happen quickly like that, on the day when I, the Son of Man, show myself clearly. 31 On that day, a person who is up on the roof of his house must not go back down into the house. He must not get his things that are inside the house to take with him. In the same way, people that are working outside in their fields must not go back to their homes. 32 Remember what happened to Lot's wife.

17:32See Genesis 19:26. Before God destroyed Sodom, Lot and his wife ran away from the city. But she stopped running away and she looked back at the city. She became a rock made from salt.

33 Whoever wants to keep his own life safe will lose it. But whoever gives his life to serve me will have true life. 34 I tell you this. At that time, two men will be sleeping in one bed. God will take one of them away but he will leave the other man behind. 35-36 Two women will be preparing food together in the same place. God will take one of them away but he will leave the other one behind.’

37 Jesus' disciples asked him, ‘Where will this happen?’ Jesus replied, ‘If a dead body is lying somewhere, vultures will come together in that place.’

17:37Jesus did not give them a clear answer. Sometimes, people would see vultures flying above a certain place. So they knew that there was a dead or dying animal below. The things that Jesus talked about will start to happen. Then people can know that the time is near.