This concept is usually drawn from Matthew  24:34, “I tell you the truth, this generation will certainly not pass away  until all these things have happened.” The previous verses, Matthew 24:1-33,  describe end-times events in relation to Israel. As a result, some interpreters  thought that the end times would begin when Israel was “reconstituted” as a  nation (which happened in 1948). However, as more and more time passed from  1948, the time span of a “generation” began to lengthen and lengthen. It has now  been more than 60 years – which is far beyond any standard definition of a  generation.

The biggest problem with this teaching is that it completely  misunderstands Matthew  24:34. What the context appears to say is that once the end-times events  begin to happen, they will happen quickly. Further, Jesus’ prophetic words in  Matthew 24 seem to have a “double fulfillment.” Some of the events occurred in  A.D. 70 when the Romans destroyed Jerusalem and Israel. Other events (24:29-31,  for example) have clearly not yet occurred. Some of Jesus’ words occurred  shortly after He spoke them (this generation will not pass); others have not yet  occurred. To answer your question directly, no, it is not scriptural to teach  that the generation that sees Israel become a nation will also see the second  coming of Jesus Christ. This may be the case, but Scripture does not  specifically say so.

* An editors note: When we look at the generational question (the generation that saw Israel re-formed as a nation still being alive for the Second  Coming?) and in conjunction with Matthew 24:34 ( “I tell you the truth, this generation will certainly not pass away  until all these things have happened.”)  we are left with one possible and additional solution to this mystery.

The generation known today as “Baby Boomers” begin to appear at about the same time as Israel’s becoming a nation (which happened in 1948) . Though the generation of Baby Boomers’ are aging, there are still many of whom survive and may “not pass away  until all these things have happened.” Perhaps we are the generation referred to in Matthew  24:34.  Christ would not make the statement “I  tell you the truth” without knowing specifically who He was speaking of!

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