The Journal of Biblical Accuracy

Download for free the PDF version of the study, optimized for your e-book reader / table / desktop / smartphone PDF version

Matthew 24:13: "But the one who endures to the end will be saved"

Along the same lines, and to return back for a moment to the gospel of Matthew, the Lord Jesus said:

Matthew 24:9-13
"Then they will deliver you up to tribulation and put you to death, and you will be hated by all nations for my name's sake. And then many will fall away and betray one another and hate one another. And many false prophets will arise and lead many astray. And because lawlessness will be increased, the love of many will grow cold. But the one who endures to the end will be saved."

Some may say that the Lord speaks here about the last days. And they will be right. But aren’t now the last days? And to avoid opening an eschatological discussion here, which in any case is not really the subject of this study, even if these days were not part of the last days, would this make his last statement less valid today? As He said: "the one who endures to the end will be saved". Exactly the same we saw previously in Hebrews: "For we have come to share in Christ, if indeed we hold our original confidence firm to the end" (Hebrews 3:14). Faith is a race and to run it we need endurance. Those who endure not a little, not till the middle, but to the end, will be saved. The others, the ones who fell away and who did not endure will not be there. That is why the writer of Hebrews encourages us:

Hebrews 10:35-39
"Therefore do not throw away your confidence, which has a great reward. For you have need of endurance, so that when you have done the will of God you may receive what is promised. For, "Yet a little while, and the coming one will come and will not delay; but my righteous one shall live by faith, and if he shrinks back, my soul has no pleasure in him." But we are not of those who shrink back and are destroyed, but of those who have faith and preserve their souls."

We have need of endurance, so that after we have done the will of God we may receive what is promised. And as 1 John 2:25 tells us:

"And this is the promise that he made to us—eternal life."

Eternal life is a promise, the chief promise, but to receive it we need to endure to the end. Those who abandoned the race, those who did not endure but shrank back will not receive the promise. And the writer of the Hebrews encourages us again:

Hebrews 12:1-2
"Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God."

We have a race to run and there is only one way to run it: with endurance and looking unto Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith. And running with endurance, having our eyes fixed on Jesus and on what is promised to us, we will bear the fruit which marks the true disciples of Christ, the fruit the people of the fourth category of the parable of the sower bore:

"As for that in the good soil, they are those who, hearing the word, hold it fast in an honest and good heart, and bear fruit with patience."

The word "patience" is exactly the same Greek word translated as "endurance" in Hebrews 10:36 and 12:1. The ones in the fourth category are those who endure, who keep on running having their eyes on the Lord and with patience, as they abide in the vine, in Christ, they bear fruit. May all of us be in that category and remain in that category and if any of us is not in it may he repent and "run with endurance the race that is set before us".

Next section: 1 John 2:24-25 – "if what you heard from the beginning abides in you"


Author: Anastasios Kioulachoglou