Be Not Misled

This poem is an interpretation of part of the Bible (Matthew 24). This part of the Bible is called the Olivet Discourse. In this monologue, Jesus tells of the signs of the end of the age. He says that there will be many false prophets and false christs, who will mislead many people. There will be great earth changes and many signs. Those who are wise will wait for Jesus’ return with faithfulness.

As Jesus left the temple and was going away
His disciples came to show him without delay
All the grandeur of the temple’s stones
And all of the various rooms and zones
Jesus said, “You see all these buildings around
One day, every stone here will be torn down”

As Jesus was sitting on Olive’s Mount
His disciples asked him to recount
The signs that would precede the age’s end
So that they would know and comprehend
So they would be prepared for his coming
And anticipate what was forthcoming
Jesus answered and said, Be not misled
Don’t follow the false Christs or lose your head
For many will follow after these fakes
And they will not know that they are snakes
When you hear about wars, don’t be afraid
It is not yet the end, don’t be dismayed
Nations and kingdoms will be in conflict
And famines and earthquakes will afflict
But these are only the start of birth pains
It’s like a rider who holds back the reins

Then they will overwhelm you with tribulations
Because of me, you will be hated by all nations
And many will fall away and hate and betray
And they will kill you who my words obey
Many false prophets will their deceptions unfold
While evil causes the love of many to grow cold
But he who endures and has these things braved
Will survive until the end and be saved
Once this gospel of the kingdom has been preached
To all nations and has earth’s limits reached
This age will have passed
And the end will come fast

When you see the abomination of desolation
Which Daniel spoke of, in the holy location
Then those who are in Judea must escape to the hills
And those on the housetop not return for their bills
Those in the field must not return for their cloaks
As for the pregnant and nursing, distress provokes
For there will be tribulation that is greater
Than anything previous or that will come later
Those days will be shortened for the elected
So that some life on earth will be protected
For if those days had not been reduced
Complete destruction would have been produced

If anyone says, “Here is the Chosen One”
Don’t pay attention or after him run
For many false Christs and prophets will arise
And they will put many signs before your eyes
I have told you in advance, so
Do not after their wonders go
If they say he is in the desert
They only mean your way to divert
If they say he is in the inner room
You must not their honesty assume
For the Son of Man will come like a lightning flash
That fills the whole sky, along with a thunder crash
When the corpse is on the ground
There the vultures will be found

Right after the trouble of those days
The sun will be covered with dark haze
The moon will not give its steady rays
The falling stars will watchers amaze
The powers of heaven in the sky
Will fall down and cease to fly
When the sign of the Son of Man appears
The people will look into the sky with tears
For on clouds the Son of Man will draw near
And he will with power and glory appear
And his angels will blow their trumpets on high
To gather his elect from the four parts of the sky

Learn the parable of the fig tree’s leaves
Which bud when the plant summer perceives
These are the signs that the Son of Man is near
And some will see these things before they disappear

Heaven and earth will fade from sight
But my words will never take flight
Only the Father knows the time of the end
The angels and the Son do not comprehend

Before the Son of Man appears on earth
People will be eating and drinking with mirth
They will be marrying, as in Noah’s day
When the flood came and took them away
The people were not prepared and did not know
Until it rained and they saw the overflow
Two men will be in a field of grain
One will be taken, and one remain
Two women will be at the mill one day
One will be taken, and one will stay

If the head of the house knows the time of night
That the thief will come, he will put on the light
In the same way, you should keep your readiness
Stay alert and watch for the Son with steadiness
For the Son will come at a moment
When none are expecting the event

Who is a faithful slave, and wise
On whom his master always relies?
This slave gives the household their food
At the right time and is therefore shrewd
Blessed is this slave who is not shirking
His master will return and see him working
The master will put him in charge of all
That is in his rooms, closets, and hall
But if the slave says in his mind
“My master will not return and find
That I am lazy, drunk, and violent
He’ll not return soon, in any event”
The master will return when he does not expect it
And will cut him down and call him a hypocrite
In that place, people will writhe and seethe
And there will be tears and gnashing of teeth