I've heard some say that the darkening of the sun, and the moon not giving its light, and the stars falling in Matthew 24:29-which happens immediately after the tribulation are a description of the very end of the world.
However, I've never heard anyone explain, if it is the end of the world-why the parallel verse in Mark says that the suns darkening, and the moon not giving its light, and the stars falling-are happening in a period of time called "those days"?
Mark 13:24 But in those days, after that tribulation, the sun shall be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light,
"In those days AFTER that tribulation".
So, apparently, the sun, moon, and stars are all removed and gone. And yet, according to Genesis 1:14 these celestial bodies were set in the heavens to govern the movement of time. If the celestial clock is taken out "immediately after the tribulation"(Matthew 24:29); then how is it possible for there to be "days after the tribulation" as Mark 13:24 says?
These seeming 'contradictions' do not bother many theologians and those whose eschatology has been set for centuries because no matter what they will not change their teachings anyway.
But these seeming contradictions (I say seeming because there are not actual contradictions in the Bible-only those that appear to be due to our limited ability to understand)-nag at the true Bible student who is one of God's elect people. Why the ever so slight difference in language from Matthew 24:29 to Mark 13:24? And how could it be possible for there to be days after the tribulation-when the timekeepers have been destroyed? More than that, if the sun were to literally darken wouldn't that bring about a freeze to the earth that wouldn't permit us to survive very long? And if the moon no longer gave its light-wouldn't that also wreak havoc with the very delicate balance God has established between the influence of the earth and moon? Finally, both Matthew and Mark tell us that the stars fall from heaven-but Revelation 6 reveals a little bit more information and tells us that the stars fall from heaven "to the earth"!
Revelation 6:12 And I beheld when he had opened the sixth seal, and, lo, there was a great earthquake; and the sun became black as sackcloth of hair, and the moon became as blood;
13 And the stars of heaven fell unto the earth...
How could the world continue to operate for "days" after the tribulation-when stars (which we know our similar to our sun, only varying in size) are falling to the earth? If a star got anywhere near the earth's orbit the world would burn up instantly. How then can stars FALL TO THE EARTH?
Oh, don't worry-theologians reassure us-we've got it all figured out-that is, unless you start asking some pointed questions.
The truth is, that no, they did not, nor do they now, have it all figured out. None the theologians of the past have ever been able to explain the apparent contradiction between Matthew 24:29 & Mark 13:24.
It's only now, at this time, that's elect people know the answer concerning how to harmonize both passages together.
Yes-the sun, moon, and stars are all impacted immediately after the tribulation as Matthew 24:29 says (the tribulation concluded on May 21, 2011). And yes, despite the fact that the sun has been darkened, and the moon is no longer giving its light, and the stars of heaven have fallen to the earth-time continues on (in those days after that tribulation) as Mark 13:24 tells us.
But you say, "Both cannot be true!"
You're right, on the one hand, if the things we read in these Scriptures were happening literally, then it would not be possible for time to continue and days to unfold after the tribulation. The contradiction would exist.
However, on the other hand, once we understand that the things happening to the sun, moon, and stars, are not happening literally, or physically, but instead are happening spiritually-then we find harmony with both Scriptures. Immediately after the tribulation the spiritual sun is darkened and the spiritual moon does not give its light and the spiritual stars fall to earth-and since it is all spiritual-the literal sun, moon, and stars up in the heaven continue their functioning by continuing to monitor days AFTER the tribulation.
We now have a solution that no past theologian has known. And we have a solution that fits in with an abundance of other Biblical evidence which points to a spiritual judgment taking place on the date of May 21, 2011.