21:20 “But when you see Jerusalem 1 surrounded 2 by armies, then know that its 3 desolation 4 has come near. 21:21 Then those who are in Judea must flee 5 to the mountains. Those 6 who are inside the city must depart. Those 7 who are out in the country must not enter it, 21:22 because these are days of vengeance, 8 to fulfill 9 all that is written. 21:23 Woe to those who are pregnant and to those who are nursing their babies in those days! For there will be great distress 10 on the earth and wrath against this people. 21:24 They 11 will fall by the edge 12 of the sword and be led away as captives 13 among all nations. Jerusalem 14 will be trampled down by the Gentiles until the times of the Gentiles are fulfilled. 15
21:25 “And there will be signs in the sun and moon and stars, 16 and on the earth nations will be in distress, 17 anxious 18 over the roaring of the sea and the surging waves. 21:26 People will be fainting from fear 19 and from the expectation of what is coming on the world, for the powers of the heavens will be shaken. 20
3 tn Grk “her,” referring to the city of Jerusalem (the name “Jerusalem” in Greek is a feminine noun).
4 sn The phrase its desolation is a reference to the fall of the city, which is the only antecedent present in Luke’s account. The parallels to this in Matt 24:15 and Mark 13:14 refer to the temple’s desolation, though Matthew’s allusion is clearer. They focus on the parallel events of the end, not on the short term realization in
6 tn Here καί (kai) has not been translated because of differences between Greek and English style.
7 tn Here καί (kai) has not been translated because of differences between Greek and English style.
8 tn Or “of punishment.” This is a time of judgment.
9 tn The passive construction with the infinitive πλησθῆναι (plhsqhnai) has been translated as an active construction for simplicity, in keeping with contemporary English style.
10 sn Great distress means that this is a period of great judgment.
11 tn Here καί (kai) has not been translated because of differences between Greek and English style.
12 tn Grk “by the mouth of the sword” (an idiom for the edge of a sword).
13 sn Here is the predicted judgment against the nation until the time of Gentile rule has passed: Its people will be led away as captives.
14 tn Grk “And Jerusalem.” Here καί (kai) has not been translated because of differences between Greek and English style.
15 sn Until the times of the Gentiles are fulfilled implies a time when Israel again has a central role in God’s plan.
16 sn Signs in the sun and moon and stars are cosmic signs that turn our attention to the end and the Son of Man’s return for the righteous. OT imagery is present: See Isa 13:9-10; 24:18-20; 34:4; Ezek 32:7-8; Joel 2:1, 30-31; 3:15.
17 tn Grk “distress of nations.”
18 tn Or “in consternation” (L&N 32.9).
19 tn According to L&N 23.184 this could be mainly a psychological experience rather than actual loss of consciousness. It could also refer to complete discouragement because of fear, leading people to give up hope (L&N 25.293).
20 sn An allusion to Isa 34:4. The heavens were seen as the abode of heavenly forces, so their shaking indicates distress in the spiritual realm. Although some take the powers as a reference to bodies in the heavens (like stars and planets, “the heavenly bodies,” NIV) this is not as likely.