Luke 21:16-20

Luke 21:16 (KJB)
And ye shall be betrayed both by parents, and brethren, and kinsfolks, and friends; and some of you shall they cause to be put to death.

Jesus knew that betrayal was going to be part of what the Christians would experience. Jesus knew this first hand because soon Judas was going to betray Him. This verse also teaches that the family relationship will not override the hatred that family members have for Jesus. Those who become Christians will face betrayal by those in their own families. We see this today in Muslim, Hindu, Jewish families (just to name three) that will ostracize those who have become saved in Christ. The Muslims will kill that person, the Jews will hold a funeral for that person, the Hindus will physically attack that person. So not even the family relationship will protect any Christian. This is something that has not stopped. The words “shall be betrayed” is one word in the Greek and is in the future tense which means it will continually happen until the Lord returns.

Luke 21:17 (KJB)
And ye shall be hated of all men for my name's sake.

The words “be hated” in the Greek are in the present tense which means that that this general hatred of Christians is always present on earth. You can be of any religion in this world and talk about “Mother Earth,” migration of the soul, becoming god, witchcraft, etc., and that will find favor with the unsaved but the minute you mention the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, in another way than a swear word, you will be ostracized and hated and persecuted. This world hates the Lord Jesus Christ because He represents the fact that there is coming a day of reckoning for the sins of man. World religions like New Age, Islam, Buddhism, etc. do not have a way of dealing with sins so they ignore it and teach deceptions like reincarnation, so a person feels good about dying and then coming back for a second chance to make it better. The reality is that true Christians will be hated by all the unbelievers in the world and that means both the non-religious unbelievers and the religious unbelievers. You may be tolerated by friends until the moment you mention the name of the Lord Jesus Christ or the Bible or Judgment Day, and then you will be out.

Luke 21:18 (KJB)
But there shall not an hair of your head perish.

Since Jesus is still speaking of the coming destruction of Jerusalem, he makes a great promise to His followers that not one hair of their head will perish. During the siege of Judaea and Jerusalem, about one million Jews were killed but the fact that the Christians had obeyed the Lord’s warning and fled before the Roman army entrenched around Jerusalem, not one Christian perished in this siege. This was confirmed by Josephus. The unsaved Jews who rejected Jesus also rejected His warnings and they suffered and died as a result.

Luke 21:19 (KJB)
In your patience possess ye your souls.

(Mat 10:22 KJV) And ye shall be hated of all men for my name's sake: but he that endureth to the end shall be saved. The principle in this verse in Luke is akin to the one in Matthew 10:22. When the persecution comes and you are taken to be examined, do not be anxious at that time but be patient that God will give you what to say in the moment. Be in possession of your soul and do not act with fear. The second principle in this verse is that when Jesus spoke of the Christians that should leave Jerusalem before the siege, they are to wait until the right time and are not to go any sooner than before they see the armies approaching. Then it will be the right time to move. The Christian is to be in charge of their spiritual life in that they are not to make any impulsive moves but to be in full obedience to Christ.

Luke 21:20 (KJB)
And when ye shall see Jerusalem compassed with armies, then know that the desolation thereof is nigh.

(Mat 24:15 KJV) When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoso readeth, let him understand:) Jesus now specifically tells the disciples that when you “see” the abomination of desolation. This is speaking of physical sight and not spiritual sight for the usage of the word “eidon” at this point. The abomination of Desolation will be the armies of Rome because they will be seen in the holy place. The term “holy place” is normally used in connection with the temple and tabernacle. However, the term “holy place” is also used as a description of the city of Jerusalem. (Psa 46:4 KJV) There is a river, the streams whereof shall make glad the city of God, the holy place of the tabernacles of the most High. Before Jesus went to the cross, the term holy place or holy city was a name for Jerusalem. So now Jesus is telling the disciples that when they physically see. What will they physically see? Luke 21:20 answers that question. (Luke 21:20 KJV) And when ye shall see Jerusalem compassed with armies, then know that the desolation thereof is nigh. Remember Jesus said that their place is left unto them desolate and when the army of Rome marches into Jerusalem and razes it, the temple will be destroyed. (Dan 11:31 KJV) And arms shall stand on his part, and they shall pollute the sanctuary of strength, and shall take away the daily sacrifice, and they shall place the abomination that maketh desolate. Along with the temple being destroyed, the Mosaic law will also be discontinued or taken away because it is no longer needed since it was only a shadow of Christ and since He came and went back to Heaven, it is now pure grace for salvation.

Since the time Israel was formed through the 12 patriarchs, they have been a rebellious, recalcitrant nation even to the point of crucifying their own Messiah. What is happening here is God is now taking vengeance on Israel for their rebellion. (Luke 21:22 KJV) For these be the days of vengeance, that all things which are written may be fulfilled. The principle is given to us in Romans 12:19. (Rom 12:19 KJV) Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord. So it is God Himself who brought the vengeance upon rebellious Israel and since He is now dealing with all nations of the world, the Gospel could not be sequestered in a temple in one small place but must go out to the whole world. The holy place in this verse has absolutely nothing to do with a local church because Jesus is describing the end of the Mosaic system and the end of a rebellious nation. The “local church” has not even been born yet and will come into existence under the Apostle Paul.