24:1–25:46 These two chapters are the last of Jesus’ five great discourses in Matthew. Sometimes called the “Olivet discourse” because of its setting, most of the discourse is also recorded in Mark 13. The language is symbolic, and it deals with a number of events, not just a single incident.
There are three basic interpretive approaches to this discourse: first, all or most of ch. 24 (at least through v. 35) is concerned exclusively with the destruction of Jerusalem, and the “coming” of the Son of Man (24:30) is the exaltation of Jesus in heaven. Second, all of the sermon is about the Second Coming of Christ in judgment. Third, the sermon combines the destruction of Jerusalem and the judgment of the world in such a way that it is difficult to separate the references to the events surrounding the fall of Jerusalem and the Second Coming.