Matt.24:8 – But all these things are merely the beginning of birth pains.
Jesus began to describe some pretty disturbing things to His disciples that day. They were so proud of the temple Herod had restored, it was relatively new being finished in 19 B.C. And they were asking Jesus what He thought about it. He burst their bubble with a prophesy about things to come. He said the temple would be totally torn down, there would be wars, earthquakes, and famines. And of course, the disciples themselves would be attacked and ultimately martyred. How would you like to get that word the next time you go to a prophetic meeting? Then Jesus said something quite eye opening, He said that all of that trouble was like a woman suffering in child birth, she was travailing as she birthed a brand new life. These prophetic birth pains would usher in the kingdom of God. Here is CHRYSOSTOM on this verse.
“By wars and rumors of wars he refers to the troubles that are coming upon them. They supposed after that war the end would come. But see how he warns them: “But the end is not yet. For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom.” He speaks of the preludes to the troubles of the Jews. “All this is but the beginning of the birth pangs,” that is, of the troubles that will befall them. “Then they will deliver you up to tribulation and put you to death.” This was the season for being candid about what was to come, in order that they might strengthen one another in facing their common miseries.”
So right now, in today’s world, we see an intensification of these things that Jesus spoke about, we too are going through the birth pains of the kingdom of God. Here is how Paul describes it.
Rom.8:22,23 – “For we know that the whole creation groans and labors with birth pangs together until now. Not only that, but we also who have the first-fruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, eagerly waiting for the adoption, the redemption of our body.”
The horrible events that happened in Israel this week are part of those birth pains, they aren’t pleasant but something amazing is about to happen. Just as birth pains were not God’s original plan for childbirth (they came as the result of the fall), these horrible events are also part of our fallen world. As we look with the eyes of faith and proclaim God’s kingdom, we will come out on the other side in God’s glorious new day.