In the Scripture from Matthew 24, Jesus says of His return, “Nobody knows that day and that hour, not even the angels in heaven – only the Father knows.” But we know something the disciples didn’t know. It was going to be a very long time.
I can see why Jesus couldn’t tell them even if He had known. If Jesus had said it’s going to be in the midst of 2014, in May to be exact (and hear me, I’m not predicting a date), the disciples would have probably said, “Wait a second Jesus – you’re saying 50 generations from now? Seriously? 2000 years? Well, what’s the urgency?” By not knowing, the disciples were better off.
The Apostle Paul said “Don’t even get married and start raising a family” because he thought Jesus was coming right back. Looking back on history, we can see that Paul was mistaken to believe that Jesus was coming right back, but he wasn’t wrong to live with that sense of expectancy.
And if the disciples knew it would be 2,000 years or more, they could have easily been apathetic – just like many of us are because we know it’s been 2000 years.