"But when you enter a town and are not welcomed, go into its streets ..." (Luke 10:10-11)

"But when you enter a town and are not welcomed, go into its streets and say, 'Even the dust of your town we wipe from our feet as a warning to you. Yet be sure of this: The kingdom of God has come near.'" (Luke 10:10-11) 

Was Jesus warning them about the end of the world?

The doomsday interpretation of this statement by Jesus to his 72 disciples is inaccurate.

The translation makes it sound as if he wants his disciples to threaten those people within the towns that did not welcome his disciples. Some suggest the threat relates to their coming destruction - as if Jesus was threatening them with the end of the world.

This doomsday scenario as taught by some is untrue. It is a conspiracy theory gone wrong.

How can we say this?

Because Jesus said this some 2,000 years ago, and those people who were supposedly being threatened with the end of the world have long since died, and the end of the world did not happen during their lifetimes as threatened.

Let's say that even the youngest person living in one of those towns lived to be 100 years old. Since it was about the year 32 A.D., that would mean they lived until the year 132 A.D. before their body died.

Yet the world did not end before 132 A.D. - obviously.

Who, then, were Jesus and his students threatening with the end of the world then?

Haven't they been threatening the end of the world over the past 2,000 years?

In fact, this doomsday scenario has continued to be taught over and over through the centuries by fanatical institutions and their teachers. Yet the end of the world has yet to come. Have they been lying to their followers all this time? Since the end of the world hasn't come yet, we can most certainly say yes.

Here is a shortlist of some of the preachers, priests, cardinals, popes and founders of sects and cults that have predicted doomsday on a particular date:

Hilary of Poitiers: 365 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Martin of Tours: 375 to 400 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Hydatius (Bishop of Aquae) 482 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Sextus Julius Africanus: 500 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Hippolytus of Rome: 500 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Beatus of Leibana: 793 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Gregory of Tours: 799 to 800 AD (predicted doomsday dates)
Thiota: 847 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Pope Sylvester II: 1000 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Gerard of Poehlde: 1147 AD (predicted doomsday date)
John of Toledo: 1179 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Joachim of Fiore: 1205 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Pope Innocent III: 1284 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Joachimites: 1290 and 1335 AD (predicted doomsday dates)
Jean de Roquetaillade: 1368 and 1370 AD (predicted doomsday dates)
Amaldus de Villa Nova: 1378 (predicted doomsday date)
Thomas Muntzer: 1525 AD  (predicted doomsday date)
Johannes Stoffler: 1524 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Hans Hut (Anabaptist): 1528 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Melchior Hoffman (Anabaptist): 1533 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Jan Matthys (Anabaptist): 1534 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Martin Luther (Augustinian monk): 1600 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Christopher Columbus: 1658 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Joseph Mede: 1660 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Sabbatai Zevi: 1648 and 1666 AD (predicted doomsday dates)
Fifth Monarchists: 1666 and 1673 AD (predicted doomsday dates)
Benjamin Keach (Baptist): 1689 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Pierre Jurieu: 1689 AD (predicted doomsday date)
John Mason (Anglican): 1694 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Johan Heinrich Alsted (Calvinist): 1694 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Cotton Mather (Puritan): 1697, 1716 and 1736 AD (predicted doomsday dates)
Henry Archer (Fifth Monarchist): 1700 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Cardinal Nicholas of Cusa: 1700 to 1734 AD (predicted doomsday dates)
Camisards: 1705 and 1708 AD (predicted doomsday dates)
William Whitson: 1736 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Emanuel Swedenborg (Lutheran): 1757 AD (predicted doomsday date)
The Shakers (Ann Lee): 1792 and 1794 AD (predicted doomsday dates)
Cardinal Pierre d'Ailly: 1789 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Charles Wesley (Methodist): 1794 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Christopher Love (Presbyterian): 1805 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Margaret McDonald: 1830 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Joseph Smith (Mormon): 1832 and 1891 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Johann Albrecht Bengel (Lutheran): 1846 AD (predicted doomsday date)
John Wesley (Methodist founder): 1836 AD (predicted doomsday date)
William Miller (Millerites founder): 1843 and 1844 AD (predicted doomsday dates)
George Rapp (Harmony Society founder): 1847 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Harriet Livermore: 1847 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Ellen White (Seven Day Adventists): 1850, 1856 and "early 1900s" AD (predicted doomsday dates)
John Cumming: 1862 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Joseph Morris (Mormon): 1862 AD (predicted doomsday date)
John Wroe (Christian Israelite Church): 1863 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Jonas Wendell and other Adventist preachers: 1863, 1874, 1870 AD (predicted doomsday dates)
Mother Shipton: 1881 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Wovoka (Ghost Dance): 1890 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Catholic Apostolic Church: 1901 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Watchtower Bible and Tract Society (Jehovah's Witnesses): 1914, 1915, 1918, 1920, 1925, 1941, 1975, 1994 and others more recent. (predicted doomsday dates)
Margaret Rowen (Seventh-Day Adventist): 1920 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Spencer Perceval (Catholic Apostolic Church): 1926 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Wilbur Glenn Voliva: 1935 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Herbert Armstrong (Worldwide Church of God founder): 1936 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Florence Houteff (Branch Davidians): 1959 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Johann Bischoff (New Apostolic Church): 1951 and 1960 AD (predicted doomsday dates)
Jim Jones (People's Temple cult): 1967 AD (predicted doomsday date)
George Williams (Church of the Firstborn): 1969 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Herbert Armstrong (Worldwide Church of God): 1972 AD (predicted doomsday date)
John Wroe (Christian Israelite Church): 1977 AD (predicted doomsday date)
William Branham (evangelist): 1977 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Chuck Smith (Calvary Chapel): 1981 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Pat Robertson (evangelist): 1982 and 2007 AD (predicted doomsday dates)
Lester Sumrall (Pentecostal): 1985 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Edgar Whisenant: 1988 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Elizabeth Clare (Summit Lighthouse): 1990 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Rollen Stewart: 1992 AD (predicted doomsday date)
David Berg (The Family): 1993 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Harold Camping: 1994, 1995, 2011 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Ronald Weinland (Church of God): 2011 and 2012 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Aggai: 1997 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Marshall Applewhite (Heavens Gate cult): 1997 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Archbishop James Ussher: 1997 AD (predicted doomsday date)
James Gordon Lindsay (Christ for the Nations): 1999 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Jerry Falwell (evangelist): 2000 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Ed Dobson: 2000 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Lester Sumrall: 2000 AD (predicted doomsday date)
Jonathan Edwards (Congr. Protestant): 2000 AD (predicted doomsday date)
David Meade: 2017 and 2018 AD (predicted doomsday dates)

In some cases, as we see, some of these teachers set a new date for the end of the world after the first date past. Everyone got ready for the end of the world, and then the sun rose the next morning. Instead of being honest and saying, "well I guess I was wrong," they just set another date.

Others are still setting dates for the end of the world, and then resetting them after the date predicted passes. Are we supposed to still believe them?

Why all these false predictions?

Are they merely following in Jesus' footsteps in making false predictions for the end of the world? In other words, was Jesus also making a false prediction, and thus a false threat?

Just imagine: Say children are playing in a schoolyard and a group of kids kicks one of the boys out of the schoolyard. The boy starts to walk out but before he leaves he turns and threatens that he'll come back and beat them all up. What would we make of such a boy?

We will think he is immature. Only an immature kid would make such an idle threat against others.

Is this what Jesus is teaching his followers to do? Make idle threats?

Don't be ridiculous.

The fact is, Jesus was not making a threat at all. The translation and interpretation of this statement only make it seem that way.

The reality is that yes, Jesus was indeed telling his students to walk away from the village and 'wipe the dust off their feet.' But why?

'Wiping the dust off their feet' symbolizes a dismissal of the village - not making idle threats against it.

In fact, the word being translated here to "warning" does not mean warning at all. The Greek word ἀπομάσσω (apomassō) means "to wipe off;" particularly, "to wipe off one's self, to wipe off for one's self."

So the word is precisely the opposite of what is being translated - "wiping off as a warning." It is wiping off on behalf of oneself.

What about the phrase "against you"?

This is being translated from the Greek word σύ (sy) which means "you."

So Jesus didn't say "'Even the dust of your town we wipe from our feet as a warning to you."

He said:
"We wipe the dust of your town off our feet."
If we return to the analogy of the schoolboy and the schoolyard, Jesus would be in effect advising the boy to just walk away and leave it alone. Isn't this what the expression means:

"I will wipe the dust of you off my feet."

It means to be done with that person or persons. Forget about it. Walk away. Don't carry away any regrets or bad feelings. Just walk away.

But Jesus didn't tell them to only walk away. He also asked them to leave them with the words of wisdom:

"Yet be sure of this: The kingdom of God has come near.'"

We have discussed the meaning of this statement at length in the link above - showing this phrase has nothing to do with time or the end of the world:

"Heal the sick who are there and tell them, 'The kingdom of God has come near to you.'"

Why is this statement not a threat?

We can see that Jesus was telling his disciples to teach this to everyone - even those who listened with humility.

In other words, Jesus is not advising his disciples to threaten those who rejected them. He was telling them to walk away, yet have mercy on those who rejected them.

By insisting that "'The kingdom of God has come near to you,'" he wanted them to leave them with the teaching - continuing to offer them the reality that they can, in fact, make a change in their lives and come to have a relationship with the Supreme Being. They were to insist to them that God is nearby and they can still turn to Him.

Yes, Jesus would certainly not be happy with anyone who rejected the teachings of his disciples. But that 'not happy' is transcendental sadness. It is not an "I hate you cause you won't listen" situation. Jesus is not a vengeful person - and neither is the Supreme Being.

It is, rather, transcendental love. Mercy. It is compassion.

Certainly, this mercy and compassion are extended to all of us. And certainly, all of us at one point or another have rejected God's teachings and instructions. (As Jesus' teachings are coming from the Supreme Being.)

In fact, that is why we are here in this physical world - away from God. Each of us rejected Him. We fell.

And since then we have been given numerous chances to listen to His teachings and instructions. Yet we have continued to reject them to one degree or another.

And yet even though we have rejected the teachings of the Supreme Being, He continues to have mercy on us and give us additional chances. Why?

Transcendental love. Compassion. Unconditional mercy.

Yes, the Supreme Being wants us to return to Him. Not because He needs us. But because He knows we will be happy only when we have returned to our loving service relationship with Him. He loves us and wants us to be happy. And only when we have rejected our self-centeredness and our desires to enjoy without Him will we become fulfilled, and happy.

This is why Jesus' most important instruction was:
"'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.' This is the first and greatest commandment." (Matt. 22:37-38)