Luke 21:30-33 (PHILLIPS) “Look at a fig-tree, or indeed any tree, when it begins to burst its buds, and you realise without anybody telling you that summer is nearly here. So, when you see these things happening, you can be equally sure that the kingdom of God has nearly come. Believe me, this generation will not disappear until all this has taken place. Earth and heaven will pass away, but my words will never pass away.
Some versions of the Bible actually say this:
Luke 21:32 (ERV) 32 “I assure you that all these things will happen while some of the people of this time are still living.
The Kingdom of God is in our hearts, yes, but now after 2,000 years plus, we can hardly say this has happened in fullness.
But let’s look at the passage more closely. Generation comes from a root word that has greater meaning in the 20th century. That is the word “gene.” From this basic word we get the word genus, or a type of living thing. There are no genes in minerals, as far as we now know. Genes are in people and people pass their genes down to their offspring. Here is the dictionary definition:
noun, plural genera [jen-er-uh] (Show IPA), genuses.
1.Biology. the usual major subdivision of a family or subfamily in the classification of organisms, usually consisting of more than one species.
2.Logic. a class or group of individuals, or of species of individuals.
If we look at this passage in the light of what we now know about genes, it makes sense. The type of people who will bring in and completely understand the Kingdom of God are those whose genes were planted in the 1st century believers, an actual species of believers who are Kingdom people.
That is the group that will not pass away. This also explains this peculiar verse, which I notice is often mis-translated!
Psalm 22:30 A seed shall serve Him; it shall be accounted to the Lord for a generation.
Every man was believed to have the promise to conceive a generation which in Jewish tradition is 40 years. Jesus brought forth seed, i.e. children, His born-again believers. That is His generation. But Jesus did not serve a full 40 years; He lived only 33 years. The generation He has been promised will serve out those additional 7 years.
We are now approaching the 7,000 year. Man has been here now 6,000 years; the 7th thousand-year will be the millennium when we enjoy a thousand-year reign of peace. Sounds wonderful doesn’t it. At the end of that 7th thousand-year, Jesus will have received his full 40 year generation as a father.
You can see how any other translation of this passage misses the mark.