I was exposed to a mildly apocalyptic atmosphere within evangelicalism, and i really appreciate Gary's thoughts on Matthew 24. I hope it will be of interest to some of you to hear a completely different perspective.
Another way of looking at Matthew 24, short video
"a completely different perspective"
I think it's the right one.
Look at what Christ said to the scribes and Pharisees in Matthew 23:36
Also the disciples ask in Matthew 24:3 about when the "close of the age".
Look at Hebrews 8:13, it is clear that the age of the Jews was still not over. The disciples were living in the age of the Jews not the age we are now in.
Also the disciples ask when Christ presence would be. Christ was standing right there with them. They were not asking about his second coming. They were asking about his first coming (parousias-presence).
All of these things happened in A.D. 70