Blast From the Past: Revelation Was NOT Written Before 70 AD!

Irenaeus compiled a list of apostolic successi...

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While poking around in the archived articles that I pulled over to this blog from my previous ones, I came across this little post.  Since I’m trying to focus this blog more on prophecy, it seemed like a good article to reprint just before Shabbat.

This is one of those subjects that comes around every so often in my debates on FR, so I’m just going to post it here so that I can just make a link or copy-and-paste whenever it comes up again.

Early Church tradition overwhelmingly supports that Yochanan (John) was exiled to the quiet, lonely isle of Patmos during the reign of Domitian, which would put the writing of Revelation somewhere between 90 to 96 A.D. The earliest quote verifying the date of the writing of this book comes from Irenaeus, who was a disciple of Polycarp, who in turn was a disciple of Yochanan the Emissary himself. In about 180 A.D., Irenaeus wrote:

We will not, however, incur the risk of pronouncing positively as to the name of Antichrist; for if it were necessary that his name should be distinctly revealed in this present time, it would have been announced by him who beheld the apocalyptic vision. For that was seen no very long time since, but almost in our day, towards the end of Domitian’s reign. (Against Heresies, Book V, chapter 30.3)

Preterists, whose position requires that Revelation have been written before Jerusalem’s fall in 70 A.D. (for it undeniably claims to speak of events yet future as of its writing), will try to make the case that Irenaeus was actually referring to Yochanan being seen “towards the end of Domitian’s reign” rather than the “apocalyptic vision.” But how many of us would refer to a revered Apostle with the neuter pronoun “that”? The argument that the pronoun was changed in the Latin translation but was correctly preserved in the Greek quote preserved by Eusebius does not hold up, as we’ll see in a moment.

Besides which, Irenaeus’ interpretations of Revelation are decidedly consistent with modern premillennialism. Bear in mind that he wrote Against Heresies primarily as an apologetic work. If Revelation were really so manifestly a prophecy of Jerusalem’s destruction, wouldn’t the early Church fathers have recognized it and used it as a part of their witness? Yet history tells us that’s not what happened. Only centuries removed from the event was the “discovery” made of Revelation’s supposed intent to prophesy of Jerusalem’s destruction.

Nor is Irenaeus the only person to comment on the time when this book was written. Eusebius quotes Irenaeus and goes on to cite others that were also exiled during Domitian’s reign in support of Irenaeus’ dating:

And they, indeed, accurately indicated the time. For they recorded that in the fifteenth year of Domitian Flavia Domitilla, daughter of a sister of Flavius Clement, who at that time was one of the consuls of Rome, was exiled with many others to the island of Pontia in consequence of testimony borne to Christ. (Ecclesiastical History, Book III, chapter 1; see also Book V, chapter 7).

If Eusebius understood the Apostle to have been exiled during Nero’s reign, why exactly would he offer the exile of other Christians during Domitian’s reign as proof that “they”–his sources, evidentially not limited to Irenaeus–”indeed, accurately indicated the time”? Is it not more likely that a scribal error, or even an original typo, crept into Eusebius’ work than to assume that he himself misunderstood Irenaeus’ statement so aggregiously? Moreover, the above testimony is sandwiched between two other chapters describing Domitian’s persecutions, which would be absurd if Eusebius understood Irenaeus to be referring to Yochanan being seen in Domitian’s reign after an exile under Nero’s.

If only these two fathers recorded Yochanan’s exile to have taken place in the 90s, this would be enough to put the nails in preterism’s coffin. But they were not alone: Victorinus wrote that “when John said these things he was in the island of Patmos, condemned to the labour of the mines by Caesar Domitian” (Commentary on the Apocalypse, chapter 10.11), in agreement with Jerome (Illustrious Men, chapter 9) and Hippolytus (On the Twelve Apostles). Nor can the case be made that when the early Church fathers spoke of Domitian in regards to the Apocalypse, they really meant to write ”Domitianou,” a title for Nero, as some have tried to claim. Eusebius speaks of both Nero and Domitian in his works, and never once refers to the former emperor by any name other than Nero. If every early Church father stated in no uncertain terms that the book was written in Domitian’s reign, why in the world would we try to date it decades earlier?

Simply arguing that Irenaeus is fallible is barely a fig leaf of a counter-argument, and amounts to begging the question: The only reason to assume that Irenaeus (and Hippolytus, Victorinus, Eusebius, and Jerome) has the dating of the Revelation wrong is the presumption of preterism, which requires an early date.

Now, if there were any competing traditions from the second through fourth centuries, there might be some reason to doubt all of the above fathers. The closest thing one finds to such a competing tradition is found in the intro of the book in the Syriac version, which reads, “The Revelation which was made by God to John the Evangelist in the island of Patmos, whither he was banished by the Emperor Nero.” However, to cite the Syriac version, you have to ignore the fact that in the original Syriac translation that is dated from the second century, the books of 2 Peter, 2 and 3 John, Jude, and Revelation were not included. The others had been put back in by the fifth or sixth century, but there seems to be some doubt as to whether Revelation was included even then. Indeed, one source states that Revelation “did not appear in the Syriac Testament as late as 1562.” Even if we argue that that date is too late, the fact is that the Syriac version of Revelation’s title was written, at a minimum, four centuries after Yochanan recorded it and is contrary to every other manuscript of the book and the witness of at least five early Church fathers. How exactly is this a point in preterism’s favor?

The fact is that there is really no question about the dating of Revelation except among those who require a certain date in order to make their particular interpretations viable. In this regard, it should be noted that a futurist, premillennial interpretation of Revelation does not depend upon the 90 A.D. dating of the book, and in fact will work perfectly well even given an earlier authorship. That being the case, it should be up to those requiring the earlier date to prove their supposition with clear and decisive evidence.

Shalom

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62 thoughts on “Blast From the Past: Revelation Was NOT Written Before 70 AD!

  1. Gentry disproves your position well in “Before Jerusalem Fell”. All the early christian writers you quote as supporting a late date, only do so on the basis of Iranaeus’ cyrptic paragraph. So really you have only one source, not several, and that source is confusing.

    • Shalom from one Mike to another.

      If you’re going to claim that another author has disproven one’s position, you owe us either a link or a presentation of the supposedly winning argument so that it may be considered. As for the alledgedly sole-sourcing of the dating from Irenaeus, I addressed that in the post: 1) Eusebius refers to “they” as his sources, so while he only quotes Irenaeus, he evidentially had more sources available to him, 2) one source trumps the preterist’s zero sources, and 3) the interpretation of the pre-Nicean fathers is consistent with futurism, so they evidentially did not see the fall of Jerusalem in Revelation.

      I would add that nearly all ancient events are single-sourced. See http://christianthinktank.com/5felled.html for a good discussion on the subject.

      Shalom

      • Since he didn’t provide a link, I have. This is only a starter link. I encourage you to listen to it all the way through with an open mind then decide.

  2. Excellent ‘thrust and parry’ young Sir! Touche’! Couldn’t have said it any better myself! Well done! Shalom

  3. One does not need to go beyond the Bible to prove that the Revelation was written well before AD 70.

    If you have noticed the fact that John is the NT writer who calls Jesus as the “word” (Logos – John 1:1) and analyzed why it is so, you have the answer.

    • I don’t normally approve comments of that vague “if only you do x, you’ll agree with me” sort, but you succeeded in raising my curiosity enough to ask you to actually make your case.

      For the record: John’s use of “Word” (Logos) to describe Yeshua probably stems from his Galilean origin and familiarity with the traditional translations to the Aramaic which were eventually written down in the Targums at about the time he received the Revelation, i.e., the 90s or so CE. In the Targums, the Word (Ar. Memra) of God is the part of the Holy One which created the universe and which met with Man. John’s theology of the Logos in Yeshua in chapter 1 of his Gospel account is actually a very good description of the theology of the Memra in the Targums.

      Shalom

      • I did not put a demand like you agree with me. But there is a a simple principle laid out by Apostle Paul “do not think beyond that which is written” (from 1 Cor 4:6). The scriptures answer themselves. You won’t need anything outside the scriptures.

        You need not to go to Memra for answers. The answer is there in John’s writings.

        My intention was not to challenge you anyway, but I wish you had taken a bit of time to study the topic, since your curiosity is aroused.

      • I think you’re misusing the Paul quote, but let’s go with that thought for a moment: Where does Revelation state that it was written before the destruction of Jerusalem?

        Shalom

    • Well then, in what sense do you claim Revelation shows itself to have been written before 70 CE–without referencing anything outside of the Bible itself, of course?

      Shalom

      P.S. Sabbath is coming up, so if I don’t get back to you right away, it’s probably that I’ve shut down for the evening.

  4. Though the Greek word λόγος (Logos) is used 330 times in the Bible (NT) only once it is mentioned as name of someone:

    Rev 19:13 And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: and his name is called The Word of God.

    It is but logical to think that John won’t be able to call Jesus as Word unless it is revealed to him.
    ——————————————————————————————————————————–
    One of the seven churches that Revelation addresses is that of Laodicea (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Laodicea_ad_Lycum). The city was ruined in a massive earthquake in AD 60. I do not think it logical that anyone should ask John to write to:

    the seven churches which **ARE** in Asia (Rev 1:11)

    while one of the churches is no more there!

    These are not the only internal evidences, but for a humble and logical mind these will do.

    • I’m cheating against my usual rule of putting aside the internet on Shabbat, but my curiosity got the better of me. I’ll just count it as study.

      Okay, assuming that’s true (which it may or may not be–Yeshua could have just as easily used the title in the vision because it was already familiar to John), where does the book of John say that it was written before 70 AD?

      Shalom

      • If Jesus used it prior to Revelation, it should have been known to other apostles as well, and they could have used it.

        Though, it does not say that Revelation was written before AD 70, it says it was written before the Gospel of John.

        The fact that the message is to be sent to the church of Laodicea as well (knowing that Laodicea was devastated between 60 and 64 AD) it makes sense to think that it happened while the place was still existing, rather than after the devastation.

        It is likely and logical to think that John was asked to measure an existing temple in Rev 11:1-2 rather than a destroyed one. There are no precedents in the Bible where someone was asked to measure or count things that are non existent object, unless you can show me some.

        (BTW: it does not also say that it was written after AD 70)

      • No, I’m saying that John could have already coined the phrase based on the traditional Aramaic translations of the Tanakh (the OT), and Yeshua could have used it in the vision to confirm it. Alternatively, John was already using the phrase and he was the one who ascribed it to Yeshua in describing the vision of the White Rider. Either way, you’ve got two possible alternatives to Revelation preceding the book of John.

        In regards to Laodicea, the city was rebuilt after the 60s CE earthquake–and was rich enough that it refused an Imperial stipend, preferring to pay for the repairs itself. That ties in perfectly with Yeshua’s description, “you say, I am rich, and have gotten riches, and have need of nothing.’” Certainly, it was fully rebuilt and in fine shape again by the 90s CE.

        Oh, and by citing an earthquake not referenced or dated in the Bible, you’ve violated your own rules. Apparently you *do *have to go beyond “what is written” if you’re going to fully understand the Bible. And if you can cite the earthquake, I can cite the historical fact that John was exiled to Patmos in the reign of Domitian, not Nero, putting the vision in 90-96 CE, not the 60s CE.

        It’s been fun, and I appreciate the discussion.

        Shabbat Shalom and God bless

  5. I have not seen any of the manuscripts of the Bible, and not likely to see as well.

    Apparently, the second century Syriac version of the Revelation contains this statement:

    “John the Evangelist in the Isle of Patmos, where he was thrown by Nero Caesar”.

    • That would be rather difficult, since the Second Century Syriac version lacked 2 Peter, 2 and 3 John, Jude, and Revelation. As a matter of fact, I seem to recall that Revelation wasn’t even included in Syrian Bibles until the 16th Century or so.

      There may well be a Syriac translation of Revelation from relatively early floating around, but given that the Syrian church rejected its canonicity and that no other early manuscripts have the same inscription, I see no reason to take one manuscript’s variant *title *over the words of no less than five early church fathers (Irenaeus, Hippolytus, Victorinus, Eusebius, and Jerome). You can go here and see for yourselfthat the actual Aramaic text doesn’t contain the reference to Nero.

      And once again, you’re going outside of the canonical Biblical text to make your case, which pretty much disproves your whole original point.

      Shalom

      • Irenaeus getting one fact wrong (which he did because he went too far in trying to disprove a teaching of the Gnostics connecting Yeshua’s age to the 30 “aeons” of their mythology and cited John 8:57, IIRC) does not invalidate absolutely everything else he wrote, especially when Eusebius indicates that he had other sources that confirmed Irenaeus’ account and three other early fathers also agree with him. I’m not quoting Irenaeus or the other ECFs as Scripture; just as a historical resource.

        But again, you don’t have any alternative data to offer. You’ve already demonstrated that you cannot prove a pre-70s date for Revelation by Scripture alone.

  6. You can read the Syrian version here:

    http://books.google.co.in/books?id=veLY0K4_racC&pg=PA197&lpg=PA197&dq=Syriac+version+of+Revelation&source=bl&ots=9ut1yhLNYV&sig=7QmP2LqTKbSIHn_1ZdQIqWwwVKY&hl=en&ei=WgQhTrjkL4LXrQfI8MGKAg&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=9&ved=0CFkQ6AEwCA#v=onepage&q=Syriac%20version%20of%20Revelation&f=false

    (Sorry, if I hurt you by citing 1 Cor 4:6, calling a dictionary or encyclopedia to prove scripture is not the same as quoting something that has no connection with scriptures)

  7. It may be a strange coincidence that the ambush of Jerusalem by Romans before its fall in AD 70 was 3½ years.

    You did not answer about John being asked to measure the temple in 11th chapter.

    • Leaven = sin, not the equivalent of an honest typo. And since you didn’t know that, by your own standards you have nothing at all accurate or true to offer the conversation.

      You seem to keep tripping yourself up with double-standards, I notice.

      Shalom

      • Leaven is error also – the leaven of Pharisees is not the sin! Come on, you can try to do better!

        Please, you should be open for healthy discussion. If a few minor errors were ignored many more books would have been in the canon.

        A man of God should be able to answer every question with all humility.

  8. Mat_16:12 Then understood they how that he bade them not beware of the leaven of bread, but of the **doctrine** of the Pharisees and of the Sadducees.

    Luk_12:1 In the mean time, when there were gathered together an innumerable multitude of people, insomuch that they trode one upon another, he began to say unto his disciples first of all, Beware ye of the leaven of the Pharisees, which is **hypocrisy**.

    Jesus told them to avoid the false doctrines of Pharisees!

  9. There are two questions you have not answered:

    It is likely and logical to think that John was asked to measure an existing temple in Rev 11:1-2 rather than a destroyed one? (There are no precedents in the Bible where someone was asked to measure or count things that are non existent object, unless you can show me some.)

    Is it a a strange coincidence that the ambush of Jerusalem by Romans before its fall in AD 70 was 3½ years?

    Instead of judging me, you have two ways:

    1) answer these logically and scripturally.
    2) Since you are the owner of the blog delete this conversation.

    • “There are two questions you have not answered . . .”

      Well, that’s what happens when you start spam-commenting instead of putting all of your thoughts into one or two posts; stuff gets missed in the pile.

      But in answer to your questions about Rev. 11, do you honestly think this is the least impressive to someone with a futurist interpretation of Revelation? The answer is simple: John is indeed measuring a literal Temple *which will stand at the same future time as the rest of his prophecy.*

      Seriously, if you have to even try to raise that objection, you really need to go out and read a couple of premill books just so that you’ll have the gist of premill, futurist theology.

      “Is it a a strange coincidence that the ambush of Jerusalem by Romans before its fall in AD 70 was 3½ years?”

      Not really; it’s just more evidence of the prophetic pattern I’ve talked about on this blog before. However, the lack of the Abomination of Desolation, which Paul described as a man presenting himself as God in the Temple of God and which the historical pattern of Antiochus Epiphanes establishes must take place in the standing Temple, in the Holy of Holies itself, at the hands of the ruler of a Gentile nation.

      All of this is well off the topic of this post, however. You started off claiming that using a historical source other than the Bible itself to date anything in it was invalid. You have since appealed multiple times to other historical sources to establish the date of the earthquake of Laodicea and the length of the siege of Jerusalem. You therefore are in error in your own interpretation of 1Co. 4.

      You have also claimed that Revelation 11 proves that Revelation must have been written before the destruction of the Second Temple. Since such an interpretation depends on a preterist position that there will be no Third Temple, you have committed the logical error of begging the question.

      You also attacked Irenaeus for getting a relatively minor detail on a completely separate matter wrong and have claimed that this should invalidate absolutely everything else he ever wrote because, “A little leaven leavens the whole loaf.” By your standard, since you were in error claiming that you could date Revelation without appealing to an extra-Biblical source, and in error by begging the question, absolutely everything you’ve posted on this thread is invalid.

      Shalom

      • My answer got posted below because of login session expiration.

        I appreciate your zeal to defend Irenaeus whose original works are not easily sourced and all that is available are some poor translations.

        You can do a lot of growing up and try to answer like a man of God than keeping repeating some weak arguments.

        There are quite a lot of your ilk who feel upset while weak knowledge is exposed!

  10. This talks about your logical skills:
    ==========================

    John is indeed measuring a literal Temple (present continuous tense)

    *which will stand at the same future time as the rest of his prophecy.* (future tense)!

    But the scripture does not offer any such mix up of present and future tenses! – God is not the author of confusion!

    Abomination of desolation
    ====================
    Read Matthew 24, Mark 13 and Luke 21 in parallel and you will know what is abomination of desolation.

    Mat 24:15 When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoso readeth, let him understand:)
    Luk 21:20 And when ye shall see Jerusalem compassed with armies, then know that the desolation thereof is nigh.

    What Matthew calls as abomination of desolation is explained in plain words by Luke as “Jerusalem compassed with armies”.

    Luke is immediately following it up by Jerusalem being trodden over by gentiles – exactly the same usage in Revelation 11.

    Hope you will at least agree that the invaders of Jerusalem were gentiles.

    Reading makes a ready man – Francis Bacon.

    Regarding Referring to historical data
    =============================

    Your quote from a church father’s writing from a translated version of which the originals are not available for verification and which is not part of the scriptures cannot be compared with my proving scripture with history. If you cannot understand the difference, I am not the one to be blamed. (In fact you are spamming by repeating the lame argument).

  11. The prophecies of Daniel chapters 7 – 12, Jesus’ Olivet prophecy and the scroll of Revelation are parallel accounts of the end of the earthly Old Covenant Age of the Jews and the beginning of the heavenly New Covenant Age made possible by the blood of Jesus Christ in behalf of the life of the world.

    Each account gives distinct details regarding the appointed time of the end or the end of the age. God sent His son Jesus to earth at the conclusion of the age or harvest-time to become manifest among men and to offer himself as a sacrifice for their sins. That age came to a complete end in 70 AD.

    Moses, Daniel, Jesus and John all speak of the same great tribulation that would befall the Jews for their part in killing God’s prophets and ultimately the Son of God. Jesus told his disciples what signs to look for in order to know when he would return before THEIR generation passed away — not our generation today.

    Matt. 24:
    29 “Immediately after the [great] tribulation of THOSE days the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light, and the stars will fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken.

    30 And then the sign of the Son of man will appear in heaven, and then all the tribes of the earth will beat themselves in lamentation, and they will see the Son of man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.

    31 And he will send forth his angels with a great trumpet sound, and they will gather his chosen ones together from the four winds, from one extremity of the heavens to their other extremity.
    —-

    Revelation chapter 18 confirms that this was about God’s wrath being poured out undiluted upon the harlot city of Jerusalem aka Babylon the great where all the prophets were killed.

    Rev. 18:
    20 “Be glad over her, O heaven, also YOU holy ones and YOU apostles and YOU prophets, because God has judicially exacted punishment for YOU from her!”

    24 Yes, in her [Jerusalem] was found the blood of prophets and of holy ones and of all those who have been slaughtered on the earth.”
    —-

    This very fact can not apply to any other thing in the history of mankind at any other time accept Jerusalem in the first century thus making the writing of the Revelation scroll BEFORE it’s destruction in 70 AD!

    Recall the words of Jesus in similar vein about Jerusalem:

    Matt. 23:
    37 “Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the killer of the prophets and stoner of those sent forth to her,—how often I wanted to gather your children together, the way a hen gathers her chicks together under her wings! But YOU people did not want it.

    38 Look! YOUR house is abandoned to YOU.
    —-

    Jerusalem’s house was officially abandoned in 70 AD.

  12. If the Revelation prophecy was not written before the fall of Jerusalem in 70 AD, then her house has not yet been officially abandoned by God and her abandonment is yet some time in the far distant future whenever a third temple is rebuilt – although there is nothing in all of prophecy that even suggests such a thing.

    It would also mean that animal sacrifices and offerings are or should still be carried out to atone for our sins or more specifically for the sins of God’s covenant nation the nation of Israel. This also suggests that the sins of those who are not fleshly Israel have not been atoned for and that we remain under condemnation of sin and death.

    But this is clearly not the case since Christ died for us and the house of fleshly Israel was certifiably abandoned in 70 AD just as the scroll of Revelation had foretold.

    There is a reason why the Revelation was given to THAT generation and not ours. It was written for THEM because it was upon that generation that the appointed time of the end had arrived.

    1 Cor. 10:
    11 Now these things went on befalling them as examples, and they were written for a warning to US [early Christians] upon whom the ends of the systems of things have arrived.

    Heb. 9:
    26 Otherwise, he would have to suffer often from the founding of the world. But now he has manifested himself once for all time at the conclusion of the systems of things to put sin away through the sacrifice of himself.
    —-

    This is why Jesus came saying that the kingdom of God had drawn near to those in the first century and to prepare themselves.

    The kingdom of God – New Jerusalem has been in full operation in the heavens for nearly 2,000 years. This is extremely good news for mankind today.

  13. Greetings Brother

    Even without doing any reasearch the spirit told me that the preterist teaching is a deception. Thank you for providing more info.

    The arguments they use like Laodicea being “destroyed” are very spurious. It is not like the city was zapped by the death star leaving a gaping crater. The buildings fell down. And furthermore, the letter was to the church not the city.

    Thanks again!

  14. Please take a closer look at the ‘outer court’ which would be trampled on by the Gentiles. Gentiles were always permitted into the outer court of Herod’s temple. However the scripture explains itself by ‘Jerusalem shall be trampled on by the Gentiles until…” So the ‘outer court’ and Jerusalem are synonymous. Jerusalem ceased being trampled upon (under foreign dominion) in 1967.

    And the only ‘age to come’ that Jesus taught was as follows:
    Luke 20:34 “Jesus replied, “The people of this age marry and are given in marriage. 35 But those who are considered worthy of taking part in that age and in the resurrection from the dead will neither marry nor be given in marriage, 37 and they can no longer die; for they are like the angels. They are God’s children, since they are children of the resurrection.”

    Obviously the New Age did not come in 70 AD as we still marry and die.

    • Thanks, Anna.

      The New Age began when the Old ‘Jewish’ Age ended in 70 AD. The New Age is in Jerusalem above or heavenly Jerusalem. God’s kingdom is in heaven not on this earth. Those who enter the kingdom do not marry or are given in marriage as they still do here on earth. In fact, Jesus said that the children of the resurrection become like angels and that they cannot die.

      So the New Age actually began over 2,000 years ago and all the apostles, prophets and faithful servants of God are there now and have been for a very long time.

  15. That’s the problem with this Hyper Preterist or Full Preterist “theory” of 70 AD fulfillment of ALL prophecy. Is that they allegorize everything just to fit in their theory. When you read the Bible you should know when to “rightly divide the truth” ..the bible is speaking in both Literal and metaphorical language. And these preterists commit a grave mistake in mixing those things up.

    Full or Hyper Preterism is heretical doctrine, It was a proposition devised by a Catholic Jesuit named Luis de Alcasar to counter the reformation and the accusation that the Pope was the AntiChrist. Protestant Hugo Grotius adopted the belief in order to gain rapport with the Catholics in the desire to convert some to protestantism. It was considered Heresy and rejected by the mainline Christian Churches and Councils only to be resurrected a few hundred years later by J Stuart Russel with his book “The Parousia”. A landmark book still used by Full Preterists till this day. Max King and the reformed Churches of Christ gave prominence to this belief in 1970 and upheld to this day by prominent FP leaders like Don Preston, Walt Hibbard as well as Partial Preterist like Ken Gentry, Gary DeMar and RC Sproul.

    I devoted years of reading and studying this belief only to arrive in a conclusion that it is false and heretical, it has double standards, you need to FORCE some verses in order for things to fit or comply into this belief. They allegorize the literal and spiritualize everything. (for example, Jesus “coming in the clouds” with his angels…they say it’s a metaphor, when in fact comming in the clouds they now conclude it is judgemen when nowhere .The root of this belief was borrowed from Gnosticism along with the denial of a physical bodily resurrection.
    That’s why you need a Spirit of discernment, because Hyper Preterist will engage you in a biblical viewpoint based on their own “Private Interpretation.” If your not careful you will fall into their trap.

    I just want to say this brother “The Return of Benjamin” blogger is speaking the truth. Revelation was NOT written before 70 AD. It was proven by the church fathers. Only Hyper/Full preterist has the agenda to contest this fact because their whole eschatology will crash and crumble just by proving that Revelation was Not written 70 AD but After like most scholars say. 95 to 96 AD.

    Yes. Christ will return again bodily in the Future.

    There is NO resurrection that happened in 70 AD (sorry to disappoint the preterist but its not metaphorical resurrection but literal)

    There is nowhere in the whole Bible that says a GENERATION is within a 40 Year time frame. Psalms 90:10 says 70 or 80 years as “The days of our lives” but nowhere in the Bible specifically says a specific length of a “Generation”, It varies depending on the life span. Noah and Methuselah’s generation is about 900 years. Also “This Generation” Jesus was speaking to in Mat 24:34 is the generation who see’s ALL the signs Jesus was speaking – Sun/ moon Darkened and will not give light, Power’s of Heaven Falling, Angels gathering the Elect from the four winds. etc (which again is 100% litteral) did not happened in 70 AD. (Josephus Wars description are forced and very vague, believe me I studied it for years, Also in other writtings, Josephus lied and cant be trusted as a honest witness.)

    The Rapture is a LITERAL snatching of the saints, that’s why its called by Paul ” A Mystery” it was not revealed in the whole Old Testament but for the first time made known in the NT through the revelation of Yeshua.
    I don’t agree nor I’m an advocate of the “Left Behind” eschatology by Lahaye and Jenkins, In fact I also find it inconsistent. All I’m saying is that There really is a Rapture, I disagree with their PreTrib timing but One thing for sure, It will STILL happen in the FUTURE.

    Satan has YET to be bound and be thrown into the Lake of Fire.
    (Hyper Preterist say Satan is already bound and in the Lake of Fire already. If somebody is INSANE enough to believe it. It’s up to you.

    We are NOT yet in the New Heavens and the New Earth.
    (Hyper Pret, we are now living in the New heavens and Earth but the Bible says it’s a time when there are No more pain, no more crying, no more sorrow……again if they are INSANE enough to believe it Let it be.)

    I will reserve my bullets for the mean time against this heretical doctrine.
    I read all the Full Preterist and Hyper Preterist Doctrines for 10 years and to summarize it for anyone seeking truth. It is absurd, Preposterous, false, in error and Heretical.

    • Mr. KT has provided more than enougH evidence prov for the 7 congregations that were in existence new 2000 years ago.

      The very beginning of the scroll identifies who the Revelation was written for. It was not written for us today but for the 7 congregations that were in existence. They were the ones who were living at the conclusion of that particular age. jesus promised them that that particular generation will not pass away before his return.

      He also said that it was his will for the Apostle John to remain until he came back and that he would not die before his return. furthermore, he said that his disciples will not complete the circuit of the cities before he came back in Kingdom power.

      Jesus apostles were expecting the kingdom of God to display itself instantly but Jesus explained to them that his kingdom would not come in a manner that could be observed by human eyes. Therefore it was necessary for him to provide for them a SIGN of his presence since it would be invisible to them.

      Shortly after Jesus resurrection ascension into heaven, he became a powerful, spiritual being that his apostles could no longer behold with their human eyes. So how would they know that their Lord Jesus had come back? They would know that he was present by observing that SIGN that Jesus gave them. That SIGN was Jerusalem being surrounded by the Roman army and destroyed in 70 AD .

      Jesus said that Jerusalem would enter into a time of distress that it had never seen before and would never see again and that immediately after that time of distress they would see the sign of the Son of Man coming.

      The Roman army was the Abomination of Desolation foretold by the prophet Daniel. It was the fourth wild beast of Daniel’s prophecy and it made Jerusalem a desolate waste. General Titus, the 8th king who sprang from the 7th king his father Vespasian, was the Man of Lawlessness, the Son of Perdition. He was that prince that Daniel foretold would come and destroy the Jews after the death of Christ who is Prince of the Covenant.

      • Obviously, this is a subject that whole books have been written on, and neither your brief comments here nor mine will change anyone’s mind. However, I’d like to point out a few things:

        1) You don’t even attempt to dispute the historical evidence for a post-90 date or give any evidence for a pre-70 date. This is because you have not a leg to stand on. Instead, you base your entire argument on the *assumption*of preterism. Now, obviously, futurism and historicism can survive Revelation being written early, but unless you can show good evidence that it was, preterism is dead on arrival.

        2) Your interpretation of Revelation demonstrates a lack of understanding of the whole theme of Biblical prophecy in general. Just consider the original “curse of the law” in Deuteronomy 27-30. Yes, Israel would be punished for her sins and would twice suffer exile from the Land, but the Holy One would never cast off His people forever, and always promised to bring the curse to an end, forgive Israel, and put the punishments that befell her on the nations who persecuted her (30:1-7).

        3) Why on earth would God give a detailed vision pertaining only to the destruction of Jerusalem and then instruct John to give it only to the churches of Asia Minor? Why not give it to Jerusalem, Antioch, etc.? Especially since it was apparently written in such esoteric code that you would have to have actually been there in order to interpret it “properly.”

        4) If Yeshua came back in 70 CE, why was John still mortal (he died in Ephesus)? Where was the promised Resurrection of the dead? Why haven’t we beaten our swords into plowshares yet?

        5) If Titus Vespasian fulfilled the prophecies, then why was the Temple destroyed before he could set up the Abomination of Desolation as Antiochus IV had?

        6) John himself, at the end of his own Gospel account, said that the rumors that he would live until the Second Coming were incorrect and missing the point.

        7) None of the early Church fathers of the 2nd Century interpreted Revelation in a preterist fashion. That’s pretty strange given the general hostility between them and the Jews and their desire to show how the prophecies were fulfilled as part of their apologetic.

        8) If God could cast off Israel forever for her sins despite all of His promises not to, and replace her with another, almost completely Gentile body, what makes you so sure He wouldn’t do it again and replace the Church for all of her manifest sins over the centuries? Maybe Mohammed or Joseph Smith had a point after all . . .

        And finally, preterism is utterly rediculous in denying the very public miracle of Israel returning to the Land, and the Land being restored from a desert into a garden in our own days. And if you believe that God is just to judge the whole world based on how it responds to the resurrection of one man, two thousand years ago, witnessed by only 500 people, only a half-dozen of which actually wrote down their testimony for us, how much more will He be just in judging the whole world by how it responds to the resurrection of an entire nation in our own time, witnessed by nearly all seven billion people on the planet due to being front-and-center on the news just about every night?

        Shalom

    • You: “That’s the problem with this Hyper Preterist or Full Preterist “theory” of 70 AD fulfillment of ALL prophecy. Is that they allegorize everything…”

      That’s because God Himself allegorized His riding on the clouds in judgment in the Old Testament. Jesus simply did what his Father did by using illustrations and symbolisms to depict his return with the clouds. It was spiritual NOT literal. You’ve made the same mistake the Jews did in expecting the Messiah to come in the fashion that you’ve imagined.

      • But this is of course far afield from the original purpose of the article. You’re attacking an aside rather than getting to the core argument, which is to say, setting up a straw man. The main argument of the article, which I’m still waiting for someone to disprove, is that according to all of the most ancient sources, Revelation was written well after the destruction of Jerusalem that you claim is its sole and only subject.

        But to answer you anyway: Futurists would argue that most or all of the “clouds of heaven” passages have an eschatological aspect, with the “incomplete” fulfillments in the past being precursors and types. Given that we see quite a few prophecies that seem to be fulfilled in the past that have a yet more complete fulfillment in Messiah, such as the Suffering Servant prophecies in Isaiah, being literally born of a virgin (where Maher Shalal Hash Baz in Isa. 8 was merely born of a “young woman”), the graphic details of the crucifixion contained in Psalm 22, etc., the futurist is not unreasonable to expect that the same pattern will follow in the Second Coming.

        But moreover, even if your premise is correct, it does not prove that Messiah’s “coming on the clouds of heaven” refers only to the judgment on Jerusalem in 70 CE. Even most preterists would acknowledge a final future judgment which closes the book on the present heavens and earth and opens up a new creation–would not the same idiom apply then as well?

        Shalom

      • Once again, I’m showing you that the scroll of Revelation was judgment against the Jews of the first century. Jesus himself said it! Since you can’t believe me, believe Jesus!

        The scroll HAD to be written BEFORE their demise in order to serve as a warning. ALL those things HAD to happen before that generation ended. Otherwise Jesus would be a liar. But Jesus can only tell the truth. So the scroll was fulfilled nearly 2,000 years ago.

    • Not necessarily. Even if he was the same age as Yeshua, he would have been in his 90s, which is quite doable. My grandmother lived to the age of 97, was quite spry and active right up until the time she passed, and never needed serious medical treatment or took a medicine stronger than asprin. But moreover, most likely he was a good ten years younger than that–the Gospel accounts present him as brash and young, maybe even too young to buy a drink in America when he was chosen as one of the Twelve.

      So yes, he would have been old, but far from impossibly old.

      Shalom!

      • I see no need in wasting my time disputing so-called historical evidence that Revelation was written after 90 AD. Why? Because the internal evidence of the Book of Revelation shows that it was written before the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 AD thus making any need for arguing that it was written after 90 completely irrelevant.

        Revelation or apocalypse means ‘to reveal’. The scroll was revealed to the Christians in the 1st century. It was written for them because the appointed time was at hand for all the things writt for it to be revealed was still far off.

        God told Daniel to seal the scroll given to him because the appointed time for it to be revealed was yet far off in future. But God never told the Apostle John to seal his scroll because it was the appointed time for it to be revealed had arrived upon that particular generation.

        Would you waste time disputing the historical evidence that Jerusalem was destroyed by the Roman army in 70 AD? Then neither am I going to waste my time delaying something that I know is not the truth to begin with.

      • Show me what internal evidence there is in Revelation for a pre-70 CE date *that does not depend on starting out with the presumption that preterism is true*. If you can’t do that, then you’re just begging the question.

        For example, I agree that Revelation unseals the prophecies of Daniel. However, that doesn’t prove the preterist position, since many of Daniel’s prophecies are of a time far to the future of 70 CE, such as the emergence of the ten kingdoms from Rome, or the erosion of Roman glory by a fifth political body (the clay that mingles itself with the iron), or the general resurrection of the dead.

        Shalom.

      • I will gladly show you this internal proof from within the scroll of Revelation that it written BEFORE 70 AD because the angel said that the prophecy pertained specifically to “Daniel’s people” the Jews — not the United State or Russia or any other nation.

        Also, I don’t know about those 10 kingdoms that you mentioned but I do know about the 7 heads and 10 horns of the beast in Revelation. The scroll explains that these are 10 KINGS not 10 Kingdoms. The prophet Daniel helps clarify who these are when it talks about the 4 horns or GENERALS that replaced the one horn which was Alexander the Great when he died. The 10 horns of Revelation are 10 Roman generals who are given authority to rule with the beast overseeing the destruction of Babylon the Great city of God aka Jerusalem.

        More later.

      • “because the angel said that the prophecy pertained specifically to “Daniel’s people” the Jews”

        First, that would be specifically the prophecy of the 70 Weeks, yes? That doesn’t mean that Nebuchadnezzar’s dream in chapter 2, which Daniel specifically said was given to reveal to the king what would happen to his own kingdom in the future, would be under the same constraint.

        Second, Israel is back in the Land today. This disproves the preterist premise that God has forever washed His hands of the Jews and replaced them with the Church. Therefore, a prophecy could be about Daniel’s people but still be futurist instead of preterist.

        Third, you still fail the test, since you are still imposing the assumption of preterism on the text. If you had ever so much as picked up a commentary written from a futurist perspective (a responsible one–yes, they exist–not pop-culture driven drivel), you’d know that we’ve had answers to your objections for a very long time.

        As far as “kings” vs “kingdoms,” the antecedents in Daniel for the horns show that they’re really both–which makes sense since you can’t very well be a real king without a kingdom. For example, in the ram and goat prophecy of Daniel 8, the goat has a single horn that represents Alexander, the first Grecian king. The horn is broken and replaced by four horns representing four kingdoms, out of one of which comes the little horn representing a singular king again, Antiochus IV.

        The real point is that the heads of the beast plus the beast itself represent eight successive kings and/or kingdoms (even in futurist circles, there’s some debate about that)–though nothing in the text requires them to be immediate successors. The ten horns reprsent ten significant contemporaneous kings/kingdoms to the eighth king which follow him in persecuting God’s people, and are given their power specifically for that purpose. Both the final Beast and the ten kings must be utterly destroyed from above at the same time to fit the conclusion of Revelation.

        So, since as a preterist you must have this all figured out, who are these ten kings? (Simply picking ten random procurers or archons won’t do–they have to be critical to the historical events of 70 CE.) When and how were three of them “uprooted” (Daniel 7)?

        Shalom

      • Those three horns were Galba, Otho and Vitellius.

        After Emperor Nero died, those three ascended to the throne one after the other and within one year they were all dead.

      • So you’re claiming that there is no distinction between the horns and the heads, other than that we have three horns who were all “uprooted” very quickly and therefore are not, for some reason, counted as among the heads?

      • I replied to some of your comments a couple of days ago and awaiting a response from you. However, when checking back here today I do not see what I wrote you. What could have happened to my comments? Does this happen much on this site? Were my comments not approved?

      • I don’t have this set up to have to approve individual comments, Larry, just individual posters. And I’ve not erased anything. I’m not sure what happened to your questions. Can you try to repost them?

  16. Just as an outside observer…I have be a Christian since 1972 and have been raised in the traditional pre-Trib, pre-Millenial teaching of my Baptist and Pentecostal pastors. I have never heard of this Preterist theory until two weeks ago when my current pastor taught a Pro-preterist sermon. (He being converted to its ideas about 6 months ago.)
    This is an awesome thread….PLEASE don’t stop! Sometimes logic and systematic discourse are pushed aside for “charismatic fervor.”
    If you could, please address the reference to Nero in the title of Revelation in the Syriac version. I am compiling an “apologetic” list for my pastor whom I love, but believe has fallen into possible great error. (And he is the best pastor I have ever had in my forty years of loving Jesus.)
    Thanks again….and oh yeah, Shalom :)
    Kelley

    • You’re pastor is correct.

      The apostles and first century Christians were preterists too since they also believed that they were living in the last days of the old covenant age. The very arrival of Jesus as Messiah on earth signaled that the end was near way back then since he would usher in the new covenant.

      Daniel, Jesus and the apostle John all foretold that the end would be marked by the abomination that causes desolation aka the encamped Roman legions prepared to lay siege to Jerusalem. This was also the sign that Jesus was coming on the clouds in righteous judgment against the Jews just as he had seen His Father do numerous times in the past.

      The first century Jews were disappointed in Jesus because he wasn’t at all what they were hoping for. They wanted Jesus to be an earthly king and lead the charge to destroy the Romans. But Jesus taught that his kingdom is in heaven and they simply couldn’t accept that.

      Just like those Jews, most Christians have built up wrong expectations regarding the second coming of Jesus. They insist on believing and teaching that he will return in the near future and not understanding that Jesus himself promised to come back before his apostle’s generation passed away.

      What a tragedy that so few actually come to realize this in their lifetime. You’re pastor now has. Praise God for that.

      • Where is the prophecy about a final judgment?

        I am suggesting that this WAS the final judgment for a variety of scriptural reasons.

        For one, do you recall from scripture that Elijah must come first BEFORE the great day of God the Almighty?

        Elijah DID come in the first century before the Lord Jesus and that proves it was the final judgment.

  17. Larry, there are prophecies about a final judgment all over the place. Take Zechariah 12-14 just for example: The nations are judged and Jerusalem is exalted, with the nations compelled to come to Jerusalem every year for Sukkot lest they have no rain. Preterism only works if you essentially ignore half the prophecies in the OT in interpreting the New.

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