Is full preterism a new doctrine? (revised)

Who said this?

But the things which took place afterwards, did our Saviour, from his foreknowledge as THE WORD or GOD, foretell should come to pass, by means of those which are (now) before us. For He named the whole Jewish people, the children of the City; and the Temple, He styled their House. And thus He testified, that they should, on their own wicked account, bear the vengeance thus to be inflicted. And, it is right we should wonder at the fulfilment of this prediction, since at no time did this place undergo such an entire desolation as this was. He pointed out moreover, the cause of their desolation when He said, “If thou hadst known, even in this day, the things of thy peace:” intimating too His own coming, which should be for the peace of the whole world. But, when ye shall see it reduced by armies, know ye that which comes upon it, to be a final and full desolation and destruction. He designates the desolation of Jerusalem, by the destruction of the Temple, and the laying aside of those services which were, according to the law of Moses, formerly performed within it. The manner moreover of the captivity, points out the war. of which He spoke; “For (said He) there shall be (great) tribulation upon the land, and great wrath upon this people : and they shall fall by the edge of the sword.” We can learn too, from the writings of Flavius Josephus, how these things took place in their localities, and how those, which had been foretold by our Saviour, were, in fact, fulfilled. On this account He said, “Let those who are in its borders not enter into it, since these are the days of vengeance, that all may be fulfilled which has been written.” Any one therefore, who desires it, may learn the results of these things from the writings of Josephus.

Reformed critics of full preterism usually argue that the notion that all of prophecy was fulfilled in the first century is a recent doctrine, sometimes attributed to Luis de Alcazar in the 17th century or James Stuart Russell in the 19th century, oftentimes with full blame also given to Max King in the 20th for its recent revival. In order to call it heresy (as almost all of them do), they have to refer to it as unorthodox – something that the historic Christian Church has never believed. The quote above is from the period around the time of the first Council of Nicaea, an ecumenical council whose resulting creed is usually used by the Reformed as proof positive for a future return of Christ and final judgment. It was written by one Eusebius, Bishop of Caesarea and preeminent Church historian. When Eusebius wrote this in the Theophania he had already begrudgingly signed the Nicene Creed, and afterward said other things that did not seem to altogether uphold it. This casts an aspersion on the ability of the ecumenical councils to stand as the supreme trump card divinely ordained. For that matter, where did those ecumenical councils go? If they are all the Reformed think they are, we could use a few nowadays.

Meanwhile, I reserve the right to affirm full preterism as a doctrine that has “historical Church” credentials.

[MAJOR EDIT]

The original quote that I had up there was by Samuel Lee, the translator, as his summary of what he believed after reading Eusebius. It is decidedly more full preteristic than Eusebius’ own words. I have replaced Lee’s words with some of the words of Eusebius that influenced Lee so strongly. What is stated here is common to both partial preterism and full preterism, and is thus not the argument that I thought it was. Unfortunately, the full futurists who find out that an ECF believed something or other don’t generally care what those ancient, “Catholic” guys thought and will go on believing what our modern end-times “experts” tell them. I do put some value on what the ECF believed (as much as I do any sincere Christian), but I never believe what they said just because they said it.

All those concessions aside, Eusebius’ quote above does put the Second Coming in the first century. I am a full preterist for exegetical reasons: there’s no way you’re going to convince me there’s some sort of gap somewhere in Matthew 24 that magically splits prophecy of first-century events from prophecy of events to take place no earlier than the third millennium (that’s now). The Second Coming occurred in AD 70 with the destruction of Jerusalem: any other “coming” we’re waiting on is a third coming not promised in Scripture.

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  • That’s an interesting quote to find. The seeming unorthodoxy of full preterism has caused me to keep it somewhat at arm’s length. The creeds are a big part of that. I respect Eusebius and know that he was an important church father however he’s still just one man. I guess I need more.

    I still have trouble with defining the millennium as well as the “meet the Lord in the air and thus shall we ever be with the Lord” statement in 1 Thess. 4:17.

    For those who don’t know me I reject the doctrine of the rapture and I believe that pretty much everything foretold by the NT was fulfilled by 70 A.D. (with the destruction of Jerusalem/the templ)e. If you absolutely need a label for me then I guess I’m a partial preterist. But within any preterist framework, I am not sure where 1 Thess. 4:17 fits in.

    Back to the Eusebius quote, what did he mean by “from that day to the extreme end of time”? Did he still believe in an absolute end?

  • That’s an interesting quote to find. The seeming unorthodoxy of full preterism has caused me to keep it somewhat at arm’s length. The creeds are a big part of that. I respect Eusebius and know that he was an important church father however he’s still just one man. I guess I need more.

    I still have trouble with defining the millennium as well as the “meet the Lord in the air and thus shall we ever be with the Lord” statement in 1 Thess. 4:17.

    For those who don’t know me I reject the doctrine of the rapture and I believe that pretty much everything foretold by the NT was fulfilled by 70 A.D. (with the destruction of Jerusalem/the templ)e. If you absolutely need a label for me then I guess I’m a partial preterist. But within any preterist framework, I am not sure where 1 Thess. 4:17 fits in.

    Back to the Eusebius quote, what did he mean by “from that day to the extreme end of time”? Did he still believe in an absolute end?

  • I find it somewhat reassuring to learn that you at least believe something that’s been around for a while. I still don’t agree with you, but that’s okay. I, for one, would find it interesting if you did a post (or a series of posts) on how you came to believe in preterism. [If you’ve already done this, my apologies – I read each post, but I’m afraid I don’t remember them very well]. Considering that you and I had similar religious upbringing when we were kids, I’m curious as to what sparked your belief that what you were taught growing up might not be the full story.

  • I find it somewhat reassuring to learn that you at least believe something that’s been around for a while. I still don’t agree with you, but that’s okay. I, for one, would find it interesting if you did a post (or a series of posts) on how you came to believe in preterism. [If you’ve already done this, my apologies – I read each post, but I’m afraid I don’t remember them very well]. Considering that you and I had similar religious upbringing when we were kids, I’m curious as to what sparked your belief that what you were taught growing up might not be the full story.

  • Josh said:

    I still have trouble with defining the millennium as well as the “meet the Lord in the air and thus shall we ever be with the Lord” statement in 1 Thess. 4:17.

    I guess I’m just not sure why the millennium question is so central for you. Given its proper weight, it does only occur in one small passage fraught with textual variants from an obscure book of the Bible with all kinds of over-the-top imagery and hyperbole. We shouldn’t ignore it, of course, but I think we have clear testimony as to “the shape of things to come” elsewhere in the NT.

    If Christ’s reign began at His ascension and was consummated at the Parousia in AD 70, that period stands as the eschatologically significant reign of Christ, a.k.a the Millennium. Indeed, Paul in many places affirms the eschatologically significant reign of Christ as then current before AD 70, so you can’t easily claim that whatever the Millennium refers to is something that doesn’t take place before AD 70. But if everything in the Olivet Discourse was fulfilled at AD 70, then what was there left for God to do eschatologically? Remember, Jesus predicted in Mat 24.30-31 that He would come (1) with clouds, (2) with a trumpet call, (3) and “gathering” of His elect together (cf. “. . . to meet the Lord in the air, and so shall we ever be with the Lord.”). I can’t imagine how that could be a different occasion.

    In fact, in Matthew 24 Jesus referred to the events surrounding the destruction of the temple as His “Parousia” three different times: although commonly – and not incorrectly – translated as “coming”, the word refers to the presence resulting from a coming, and hence “arrival” or “presence”. Now look at 1 Thes 4 again, and see that here again, Matthew 24 corresponds: compare Jesus’ promised “presence” with Paul’s statement that at His coming they would meet (the word means “usher in”, which rules out leaving the planet) and “be with” the Lord thereafter. How can this not be the event of 1 Thes 4? Are we to expect two such things happening, or do we let clear scriptural analogues interpret one another? Of course, as ever, the problem is defining what that means in less than literal terms, but if the timing is clear, the nature, however poorly understood, must in some sense follow. What we in the Church have today is apparently substantially better than what they had in the first century, although from our vantage point it seems hard to quantify the difference. I suggest that the “being with the Lord” was more of a reassurance that those he was talking to would not have to undergo the dreaded postmortem separation from God in Sheol.

    Jesus, Paul, Peter, and John as well as Eusebius’ “all authorities” agreed that “the End” was tied in with when the gospel was preached to all the world and the power of the Holy People was scattered, when “all things that are written must be fulfilled” (Lk 21.22), when the New Jerusalem was to descend from God, etc. I think futurists are right (red-letter day!) when they insist that the eschatology of the NT violently resists being broken up into one so-called End and then another two thousand years or more later: it’s all wrapped up together. The timing statements between Jesus, Paul, Peter, and John all point to an imminent eschaton, not one that was protracted over millennia.

    As far as Eusebius’ remark about the “extreme end of time”, there are a couple options. One, it is possible that Eusebius, while having come to a different understanding of the nature of the eschatological End, never got around to questioning the “end of time” notion, created though it was by a physicalist understanding of the eschaton. Two, Eusebius may have been speaking hyperbolically as the occasion demanded it. And I don’t deny that there may be an end of time way off in the future, but I deny that it will be eschatologically significant – that stuff’s all taken care of.

    Heather,
    I am glad you think of me as a little less of a kook than you did before 😛 I have long considered doing a post on my journey to preterism. Stay tuned!

  • Josh said:

    I still have trouble with defining the millennium as well as the “meet the Lord in the air and thus shall we ever be with the Lord” statement in 1 Thess. 4:17.

    I guess I’m just not sure why the millennium question is so central for you. Given its proper weight, it does only occur in one small passage fraught with textual variants from an obscure book of the Bible with all kinds of over-the-top imagery and hyperbole. We shouldn’t ignore it, of course, but I think we have clear testimony as to “the shape of things to come” elsewhere in the NT.

    If Christ’s reign began at His ascension and was consummated at the Parousia in AD 70, that period stands as the eschatologically significant reign of Christ, a.k.a the Millennium. Indeed, Paul in many places affirms the eschatologically significant reign of Christ as then current before AD 70, so you can’t easily claim that whatever the Millennium refers to is something that doesn’t take place before AD 70. But if everything in the Olivet Discourse was fulfilled at AD 70, then what was there left for God to do eschatologically? Remember, Jesus predicted in Mat 24.30-31 that He would come (1) with clouds, (2) with a trumpet call, (3) and “gathering” of His elect together (cf. “. . . to meet the Lord in the air, and so shall we ever be with the Lord.”). I can’t imagine how that could be a different occasion.

    In fact, in Matthew 24 Jesus referred to the events surrounding the destruction of the temple as His “Parousia” three different times: although commonly – and not incorrectly – translated as “coming”, the word refers to the presence resulting from a coming, and hence “arrival” or “presence”. Now look at 1 Thes 4 again, and see that here again, Matthew 24 corresponds: compare Jesus’ promised “presence” with Paul’s statement that at His coming they would meet (the word means “usher in”, which rules out leaving the planet) and “be with” the Lord thereafter. How can this not be the event of 1 Thes 4? Are we to expect two such things happening, or do we let clear scriptural analogues interpret one another? Of course, as ever, the problem is defining what that means in less than literal terms, but if the timing is clear, the nature, however poorly understood, must in some sense follow. What we in the Church have today is apparently substantially better than what they had in the first century, although from our vantage point it seems hard to quantify the difference. I suggest that the “being with the Lord” was more of a reassurance that those he was talking to would not have to undergo the dreaded postmortem separation from God in Sheol.

    Jesus, Paul, Peter, and John as well as Eusebius’ “all authorities” agreed that “the End” was tied in with when the gospel was preached to all the world and the power of the Holy People was scattered, when “all things that are written must be fulfilled” (Lk 21.22), when the New Jerusalem was to descend from God, etc. I think futurists are right (red-letter day!) when they insist that the eschatology of the NT violently resists being broken up into one so-called End and then another two thousand years or more later: it’s all wrapped up together. The timing statements between Jesus, Paul, Peter, and John all point to an imminent eschaton, not one that was protracted over millennia.

    As far as Eusebius’ remark about the “extreme end of time”, there are a couple options. One, it is possible that Eusebius, while having come to a different understanding of the nature of the eschatological End, never got around to questioning the “end of time” notion, created though it was by a physicalist understanding of the eschaton. Two, Eusebius may have been speaking hyperbolically as the occasion demanded it. And I don’t deny that there may be an end of time way off in the future, but I deny that it will be eschatologically significant – that stuff’s all taken care of.

    Heather,
    I am glad you think of me as a little less of a kook than you did before 😛 I have long considered doing a post on my journey to preterism. Stay tuned!

  • That’s a cracking quote, Steve.

    Can you give me the reference?

  • That’s a cracking quote, Steve.

    Can you give me the reference?

  • Hey Graham! Long time, no see. You can find an HTML version quoting Samuel Lee’s translation (1843) of this passage here or download it here, although I understand there was another translation from the 60’s that I can’t find anywhere online. The Theophania (or Divine Manifestion) was long presumed all but lost since the only surviving copies of the original Greek version are so fragmented. The scholar Samuel Lee translated the newly discovered Syriac version which is complete (or nearly so) and which contains the above passage.

  • Hey Graham! Long time, no see. You can find an HTML version quoting Samuel Lee’s translation (1843) of this passage here or download it here, although I understand there was another translation from the 60’s that I can’t find anywhere online. The Theophania (or Divine Manifestion) was long presumed all but lost since the only surviving copies of the original Greek version are so fragmented. The scholar Samuel Lee translated the newly discovered Syriac version which is complete (or nearly so) and which contains the above passage.

  • That is a good explanation. The millennium shouldn’t be such a big deal for me since it is mentioned only once in a sea of other hyperbolic statements and imagery. But here’s the rub. It’s not so much the millennium that’s a big deal, it’s the end of the millennium. Satan’s release. If John had simply said “Christ will reign for a 1000 years” and that was the end of the discussion then I’d say “ok, Christ’s kingdom was established at his ascension to the right hand of God and he reigns forever more. That would easily explain the 1000 years imagery (meaning a very long time, or forever). But if 70AD is also when Satan was cast into the lake of fire, then that means the millennium ended in 70AD (it would also mean Satan no longer exists and I’m not ready to concede that). So why would John say “1000 years” when he meant about 40 years (from 33AD to 70AD). 40 is a significant number in scripture anyway so it would seem appropriate. Revelation 20 as a whole confuses me. It says armies will surround the beloved city but they will be devoured. But in 70Ad it was the city that was devoured. The Romans laid siege to Jerusalem.
    1 Thess. 4–“in the air”. That little prepositional phrase is the point of contention for me. What the heck does that mean? And I have a hard time thinking it had some metaphorical meaning rooted in Jewish thought, because he was speaking to Gentiles. Plus he preceded the discussing by saying “I do not want you to be ignorant…”. It sounds as though he starts by saying “I’m going to speak as plainly as I know how.” It doesn’t follow that he’d then throw in a bunch of Jewish metaphors. But he was Jewish after all. Maybe it just came through a little too strongly in his writing.

    C.S. Lewis believed that there is an unpredictable end of the world coming. He likened it to a play saying that we may be in Act I or we may be in Act V. The ending (and the timing of the end) is known only to the author and we are expected to play our part well when we’re on stage, not guess the end. See the article at http://www.worldwithoutend.info/bbc/books/articles/cslewis.htm.

    You can see this belief of his played out in the fictional story “The Last Battle”. Evil people are sent into a Hell-like eternity and the righteous go on to Aslan’s country—a Platonic, heavenly place that resembles the current world but is more real. It is the true reality of which everything we now see is merely a shadow, a foretaste.

    There’s a part of me that has fallen in love with this take on the end, though I can find little to back it up biblically. As you’ll see in the article, Lewis uses some scriptures including Matthew 24. However he ignores the context missing the fact that Matthew 24 is an answer to the disciples about when the temple will be destroyed, not the end of the world.

    My belief thus far has been that there will be an end and it will simply happen. One minute you’re driving your car, feeding your baby, writing a blog, listening to your iPod, and the next minute you’re in eternity and all the present cosmos will have passed away. No rapture, no tribulation, no 666, no anitchrist. Just poof. The righteous will enjoy eternity in the presence of God (whatever that looks like) and the wicked will go on to eternal torment/outer darkness/whatever it is. This is what I want to believe. But I’m finding it harder and harder to back it up. 1Thess. 4:17 is the only thing in scripture that comes close.

  • That is a good explanation. The millennium shouldn’t be such a big deal for me since it is mentioned only once in a sea of other hyperbolic statements and imagery. But here’s the rub. It’s not so much the millennium that’s a big deal, it’s the end of the millennium. Satan’s release. If John had simply said “Christ will reign for a 1000 years” and that was the end of the discussion then I’d say “ok, Christ’s kingdom was established at his ascension to the right hand of God and he reigns forever more. That would easily explain the 1000 years imagery (meaning a very long time, or forever). But if 70AD is also when Satan was cast into the lake of fire, then that means the millennium ended in 70AD (it would also mean Satan no longer exists and I’m not ready to concede that). So why would John say “1000 years” when he meant about 40 years (from 33AD to 70AD). 40 is a significant number in scripture anyway so it would seem appropriate. Revelation 20 as a whole confuses me. It says armies will surround the beloved city but they will be devoured. But in 70Ad it was the city that was devoured. The Romans laid siege to Jerusalem.
    1 Thess. 4–“in the air”. That little prepositional phrase is the point of contention for me. What the heck does that mean? And I have a hard time thinking it had some metaphorical meaning rooted in Jewish thought, because he was speaking to Gentiles. Plus he preceded the discussing by saying “I do not want you to be ignorant…”. It sounds as though he starts by saying “I’m going to speak as plainly as I know how.” It doesn’t follow that he’d then throw in a bunch of Jewish metaphors. But he was Jewish after all. Maybe it just came through a little too strongly in his writing.

    C.S. Lewis believed that there is an unpredictable end of the world coming. He likened it to a play saying that we may be in Act I or we may be in Act V. The ending (and the timing of the end) is known only to the author and we are expected to play our part well when we’re on stage, not guess the end. See the article at http://www.worldwithoutend.info/bbc/books/articles/cslewis.htm.

    You can see this belief of his played out in the fictional story “The Last Battle”. Evil people are sent into a Hell-like eternity and the righteous go on to Aslan’s country—a Platonic, heavenly place that resembles the current world but is more real. It is the true reality of which everything we now see is merely a shadow, a foretaste.

    There’s a part of me that has fallen in love with this take on the end, though I can find little to back it up biblically. As you’ll see in the article, Lewis uses some scriptures including Matthew 24. However he ignores the context missing the fact that Matthew 24 is an answer to the disciples about when the temple will be destroyed, not the end of the world.

    My belief thus far has been that there will be an end and it will simply happen. One minute you’re driving your car, feeding your baby, writing a blog, listening to your iPod, and the next minute you’re in eternity and all the present cosmos will have passed away. No rapture, no tribulation, no 666, no anitchrist. Just poof. The righteous will enjoy eternity in the presence of God (whatever that looks like) and the wicked will go on to eternal torment/outer darkness/whatever it is. This is what I want to believe. But I’m finding it harder and harder to back it up. 1Thess. 4:17 is the only thing in scripture that comes close.

  • Doug Moody

    Steve,

    You could really help out the cause here by finding even more ancient statements like this. I for one would love to read them. If you do find more, can you add them here so I can point my friends to one spot?

    Thanks

  • Doug Moody

    Steve,

    You could really help out the cause here by finding even more ancient statements like this. I for one would love to read them. If you do find more, can you add them here so I can point my friends to one spot?

    Thanks

  • Josh,
    Gotta love your stream-of-consciousness comments. It’s obvious you’re weighing the evidence without feigning objectivity, and that’s great.

    But if 70AD is also when Satan was cast into the lake of fire, then that means the millennium ended in 70AD (it would also mean Satan no longer exists and I’m not ready to concede that).

    This is tough, indeed. I’m not sure why we need him around anymore. The explanatory powers of a belief in an active devil are exceedingly small, especially given his lack of omniscience and omnipresence and our increasing understanding of the natural sicknesses of the minds of men. But regardless, we should be able to agree that, whatever his role after Christ’s work, it’s dropped off significantly: if he still exists, Christ’s work defeated him and left him toothless. But here again, the nature of the language of Revelation prevents us (me, anyway) from coming down too hard on any side of the question.

    Revelation 20 as a whole confuses me. It says armies will surround the beloved city but they will be devoured. But in 70Ad it was the city that was devoured. The Romans laid siege to Jerusalem.

    Excellent question. I have a friend who argues, as J.S. Russell did, that this short passage and the end of the millennium is all we are waiting for. My own thoughts are that this passage is talking about something different altogether, perhaps the Gentile persecution of the Church or something. I am not aware of any “standard” full preterist answer to this question, but I’d like to hear it, too.

    1 Thess. 4–”in the air”. That little prepositional phrase is the point of contention for me. What the heck does that mean? And I have a hard time thinking it had some metaphorical meaning rooted in Jewish thought, because he was speaking to Gentiles. Plus he preceded the discussing by saying “I do not want you to be ignorant…”. It sounds as though he starts by saying “I’m going to speak as plainly as I know how.” It doesn’t follow that he’d then throw in a bunch of Jewish metaphors. But he was Jewish after all. Maybe it just came through a little too strongly in his writing.

    It’s not altogether clear what sort of people made up the Thessalonian congregation, but whoever they were, they would need to have been at least slightly aware of the Jewish Sheol/Resurrection system of belief for them to be asking the questions and for Paul’s comments to have made much sense. There’s great reason to believe that even Gentile converts were more savvy to this sort of stuff anyway: Paul emphasized to Timothy, pastor at Ephesus with an apparently sizable percentage of Gentiles, how important it was to teach his congregation the Old Testament (2 Tim 3.16-17).

    Of course, if you’re not going to allow metaphorical language, then you’ve got to affirm the literal trumpet, voice, and visible descent of the Lord from the clouds at the end (as dispensationalists tend to). The “in the air” comment is made in reference to meeting the Lord in the sky, so the literalness or symbolism of each rises and falls with the other.

    C.S. Lewis believed that . . . [e]vil people are sent into a Hell-like eternity and the righteous go on to Aslan’s country—a Platonic, heavenly place that resembles the current world but is more real. It is the true reality of which everything we now see is merely a shadow, a foretaste.

    This is not wholly unlike what I believe, actually. I believe that we appropriate God’s reality, the Jerusalem above (Galatians 4:26), to our temporal reality. The world cannot see anything but the shadows, but we live in the kingdom of light. But of course I know that’s not what Lewis and Plato were talking about. Actually, in my mind, I view the difference between earth and heaven more in the Lewisian sense, but I tie it to our own individual eschatons rather than to the end of the world.

    My belief thus far has been that there will be an end and it will simply happen. This is what I want to believe. But I’m finding it harder and harder to back it up.

    Sort of like the “thief in the night” without the rest of Matthew 24? 🙂 Well, like you, I cannot see much Scriptural justification for that view. On the contrary, both the NT and OT insist on the eternality of the New Covenant: the Church Age has no end (Isa 9.6-7; Dan 2.44, 7.13-14; Luke 1.32ff; Ep 3.21). Perhaps billions and billions of years in the future the physical universe will implode, but by then I expect we’ll be noncorporeal beings like we see in Star Trek 😉

  • Josh,
    Gotta love your stream-of-consciousness comments. It’s obvious you’re weighing the evidence without feigning objectivity, and that’s great.

    But if 70AD is also when Satan was cast into the lake of fire, then that means the millennium ended in 70AD (it would also mean Satan no longer exists and I’m not ready to concede that).

    This is tough, indeed. I’m not sure why we need him around anymore. The explanatory powers of a belief in an active devil are exceedingly small, especially given his lack of omniscience and omnipresence and our increasing understanding of the natural sicknesses of the minds of men. But regardless, we should be able to agree that, whatever his role after Christ’s work, it’s dropped off significantly: if he still exists, Christ’s work defeated him and left him toothless. But here again, the nature of the language of Revelation prevents us (me, anyway) from coming down too hard on any side of the question.

    Revelation 20 as a whole confuses me. It says armies will surround the beloved city but they will be devoured. But in 70Ad it was the city that was devoured. The Romans laid siege to Jerusalem.

    Excellent question. I have a friend who argues, as J.S. Russell did, that this short passage and the end of the millennium is all we are waiting for. My own thoughts are that this passage is talking about something different altogether, perhaps the Gentile persecution of the Church or something. I am not aware of any “standard” full preterist answer to this question, but I’d like to hear it, too.

    1 Thess. 4–”in the air”. That little prepositional phrase is the point of contention for me. What the heck does that mean? And I have a hard time thinking it had some metaphorical meaning rooted in Jewish thought, because he was speaking to Gentiles. Plus he preceded the discussing by saying “I do not want you to be ignorant…”. It sounds as though he starts by saying “I’m going to speak as plainly as I know how.” It doesn’t follow that he’d then throw in a bunch of Jewish metaphors. But he was Jewish after all. Maybe it just came through a little too strongly in his writing.

    It’s not altogether clear what sort of people made up the Thessalonian congregation, but whoever they were, they would need to have been at least slightly aware of the Jewish Sheol/Resurrection system of belief for them to be asking the questions and for Paul’s comments to have made much sense. There’s great reason to believe that even Gentile converts were more savvy to this sort of stuff anyway: Paul emphasized to Timothy, pastor at Ephesus with an apparently sizable percentage of Gentiles, how important it was to teach his congregation the Old Testament (2 Tim 3.16-17).

    Of course, if you’re not going to allow metaphorical language, then you’ve got to affirm the literal trumpet, voice, and visible descent of the Lord from the clouds at the end (as dispensationalists tend to). The “in the air” comment is made in reference to meeting the Lord in the sky, so the literalness or symbolism of each rises and falls with the other.

    C.S. Lewis believed that . . . [e]vil people are sent into a Hell-like eternity and the righteous go on to Aslan’s country—a Platonic, heavenly place that resembles the current world but is more real. It is the true reality of which everything we now see is merely a shadow, a foretaste.

    This is not wholly unlike what I believe, actually. I believe that we appropriate God’s reality, the Jerusalem above (Galatians 4:26), to our temporal reality. The world cannot see anything but the shadows, but we live in the kingdom of light. But of course I know that’s not what Lewis and Plato were talking about. Actually, in my mind, I view the difference between earth and heaven more in the Lewisian sense, but I tie it to our own individual eschatons rather than to the end of the world.

    My belief thus far has been that there will be an end and it will simply happen. This is what I want to believe. But I’m finding it harder and harder to back it up.

    Sort of like the “thief in the night” without the rest of Matthew 24? 🙂 Well, like you, I cannot see much Scriptural justification for that view. On the contrary, both the NT and OT insist on the eternality of the New Covenant: the Church Age has no end (Isa 9.6-7; Dan 2.44, 7.13-14; Luke 1.32ff; Ep 3.21). Perhaps billions and billions of years in the future the physical universe will implode, but by then I expect we’ll be noncorporeal beings like we see in Star Trek 😉

  • Thanks, Steve.

    Josh, I have to say that I respect your honest investigation here. I myself remember reaching a position that I wanted to believe in. The reason I wanted it was because it made sense of all of the texts for me. It was a while before I realised that I now interpreted all of those texts differently, so all I was left with was a position with no texts to back it up!

    In my opinion, one of the best preterist theologians is the relatively unknown Randall Otto. His discussion of the 1 Thess. meeting in the air would prove helpful, I’m sure. Personally, I see it – along with the word parousia – as having a very obvious meaning to the first hearers. I think it refers to the process whereby a newly (or about to be) appointed ruler was welcommed to the city.

    John Noe argues that the ‘air’ refers to the heavenly spiritual realm, but I’m not sure it’s even necessary to see it that literally.

    Then again, it might just be a metaphor for resurrection?

  • Thanks, Steve.

    Josh, I have to say that I respect your honest investigation here. I myself remember reaching a position that I wanted to believe in. The reason I wanted it was because it made sense of all of the texts for me. It was a while before I realised that I now interpreted all of those texts differently, so all I was left with was a position with no texts to back it up!

    In my opinion, one of the best preterist theologians is the relatively unknown Randall Otto. His discussion of the 1 Thess. meeting in the air would prove helpful, I’m sure. Personally, I see it – along with the word parousia – as having a very obvious meaning to the first hearers. I think it refers to the process whereby a newly (or about to be) appointed ruler was welcommed to the city.

    John Noe argues that the ‘air’ refers to the heavenly spiritual realm, but I’m not sure it’s even necessary to see it that literally.

    Then again, it might just be a metaphor for resurrection?

  • Doug Moody

    I think the confusion about 1 Thess comes from confusion about what Jesus will do AFTER He returns. Remember what 1 Thess says? It says “so shall we ever be with the Lord” So my next logical question would be “Where is the Lord”?

    If the Lord were to stay in the air, then we would stay there with Him. But His feet are to (or did) stand on the mount of olives. So, we too will be “ever with Him” wherever He is! His “position” now is as ruler, and that is the position we share with Him.

    The meeting in the air is all about the resurrection, not about the PLACE of the meeting. If we rise, we rise to HIM. Its impossible to rise unless you go up, right? You can’t “rise” if you go down, right?

    So, at the resurrection, we go “up” to meet him (which metaphorically is the opposite of down unless you believe this is a literal rising!) The significance of that is that righteous ones go up, and Jesus is “up”, and the unrighteous go “down”, and we all know where down is! 👿

  • Doug Moody

    I think the confusion about 1 Thess comes from confusion about what Jesus will do AFTER He returns. Remember what 1 Thess says? It says “so shall we ever be with the Lord” So my next logical question would be “Where is the Lord”?

    If the Lord were to stay in the air, then we would stay there with Him. But His feet are to (or did) stand on the mount of olives. So, we too will be “ever with Him” wherever He is! His “position” now is as ruler, and that is the position we share with Him.

    The meeting in the air is all about the resurrection, not about the PLACE of the meeting. If we rise, we rise to HIM. Its impossible to rise unless you go up, right? You can’t “rise” if you go down, right?

    So, at the resurrection, we go “up” to meet him (which metaphorically is the opposite of down unless you believe this is a literal rising!) The significance of that is that righteous ones go up, and Jesus is “up”, and the unrighteous go “down”, and we all know where down is! 👿

  • Prets R Blind

    Thought you should know that this quote is not from Eusebius. It is from Samuel Lee who translated the Theophania.

  • Prets R Blind

    Thought you should know that this quote is not from Eusebius. It is from Samuel Lee who translated the Theophania.

  • Too true, stranger. Thanks for the heads-up!

  • Too true, stranger. Thanks for the heads-up!

  • Doug Moody

    Josh and Steve,

    Revelation 20 as a whole confuses me. It says armies will surround the beloved city but they will be devoured. But in 70Ad it was the city that was devoured. The Romans laid siege to Jerusalem.

    Excellent question. I have a friend who argues, as J.S. Russell did, that this short passage and the end of the millennium is all we are waiting for. My own thoughts are that this passage is talking about something different altogether, perhaps the Gentile persecution of the Church or something. I am not aware of any “standard” full preterist answer to this question, but I’d like to hear it, too.

    Assuming that Jesus has already returned, and that the millenium (a long time) occurs after His return, then we are faced with the things that will happen during the millenium. Basically, it’s outlined thus:
    1. Jesus is our king and we are living with Him in a sort of “heaven on earth” imagery, and that we are ruling with Him. Could that “long time” period be both God’s Kingdom AND the millenium? Do you have to separate the two as being non-contemporaneous?
    2. The lamb and the wolf will dwell together and the wolf will not harm the lamb. Little children will play in the hold of the snake. But a little child shall lead them! Who is really the dominant “species” here?
    3. The devil is chained during this time, but will be allowed out for a little while, to tempt the whole world. Full preterism doesn’t allow for ANY further fulfillment of prophecy. Yet, if we MIGHT be in a millenial kind of period, right now, then is it possible that the devil might yet be allowed out of his prison?

    I am not ready to say that ALL prophecy ended in 70 AD. I think a strong case can be made for MOST things, but not all! Full preterism hasn’t made that case yet. Until they do, then the millenium existing as God’s kingdom on earth today might just be the missing link that allows christians today to be living in it, yet still allow for satanic influence in the future. It would also explain some other things that are happening even now in the world. It would also bring hope that more truth about the bible could go out to the world AFTER the “millenium” because the sin issue and satan’s role in it will be finally revealed for all. I am reminded of Is 14 and Ezek. 28

    28:18 Thou hast defiled thy sanctuaries by the multitude of thine iniquities, by the iniquity of thy traffick; therefore will I bring forth a fire from the midst of thee, it shall devour thee, and I will bring thee to ashes upon the earth in the sight of all them that behold thee.

    28:19 All they that know thee among the people shall be astonished at thee: thou shalt be a terror, and never [shalt] thou [be] any more.

    and what of the nations of the world?

    13For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north:

    14I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High.

    15Yet thou shalt be brought down to hell, to the sides of the pit.

    16They that see thee shall narrowly look upon thee, and consider thee, saying, Is this the man that made the earth to tremble, that did shake kingdoms;

    17That made the world as a wilderness, and destroyed the cities thereof; that opened not the house of his prisoners?

    Has this actually been explained in preterist system? I see a great deal about the events of 70 AD in relation to the Parousia of Christ, but not much about the defeat of evil.

    Can it be that the period AFTER the millenium (the indeterminate time when God’s people are dwelling side-by-side in a world that still has wolves and snakes in it) that satan is loosed in order to bring about his FINAL destruction?

    I have often wondered what purpose is going to be served by him being restrained during the millenium and then let loose for a little season, if the millenium is going to be some kind of utopian spot on earth. Wouldn’t it be a spoiling of paradise? But what if satan’s release is all about the creation of a crisis of worldwide proportions that finally brings about a seriousness in the world’s consciousness to turn to Jesus, both in the church and without? Would we not see a time of conversion such as the world has never seen?

    Just some alternate thinking… You guys can carry it from there! 🙄

  • Doug Moody

    Josh and Steve,

    Revelation 20 as a whole confuses me. It says armies will surround the beloved city but they will be devoured. But in 70Ad it was the city that was devoured. The Romans laid siege to Jerusalem.

    Excellent question. I have a friend who argues, as J.S. Russell did, that this short passage and the end of the millennium is all we are waiting for. My own thoughts are that this passage is talking about something different altogether, perhaps the Gentile persecution of the Church or something. I am not aware of any “standard” full preterist answer to this question, but I’d like to hear it, too.

    Assuming that Jesus has already returned, and that the millenium (a long time) occurs after His return, then we are faced with the things that will happen during the millenium. Basically, it’s outlined thus:
    1. Jesus is our king and we are living with Him in a sort of “heaven on earth” imagery, and that we are ruling with Him. Could that “long time” period be both God’s Kingdom AND the millenium? Do you have to separate the two as being non-contemporaneous?
    2. The lamb and the wolf will dwell together and the wolf will not harm the lamb. Little children will play in the hold of the snake. But a little child shall lead them! Who is really the dominant “species” here?
    3. The devil is chained during this time, but will be allowed out for a little while, to tempt the whole world. Full preterism doesn’t allow for ANY further fulfillment of prophecy. Yet, if we MIGHT be in a millenial kind of period, right now, then is it possible that the devil might yet be allowed out of his prison?

    I am not ready to say that ALL prophecy ended in 70 AD. I think a strong case can be made for MOST things, but not all! Full preterism hasn’t made that case yet. Until they do, then the millenium existing as God’s kingdom on earth today might just be the missing link that allows christians today to be living in it, yet still allow for satanic influence in the future. It would also explain some other things that are happening even now in the world. It would also bring hope that more truth about the bible could go out to the world AFTER the “millenium” because the sin issue and satan’s role in it will be finally revealed for all. I am reminded of Is 14 and Ezek. 28

    28:18 Thou hast defiled thy sanctuaries by the multitude of thine iniquities, by the iniquity of thy traffick; therefore will I bring forth a fire from the midst of thee, it shall devour thee, and I will bring thee to ashes upon the earth in the sight of all them that behold thee.

    28:19 All they that know thee among the people shall be astonished at thee: thou shalt be a terror, and never [shalt] thou [be] any more.

    and what of the nations of the world?

    13For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north:

    14I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High.

    15Yet thou shalt be brought down to hell, to the sides of the pit.

    16They that see thee shall narrowly look upon thee, and consider thee, saying, Is this the man that made the earth to tremble, that did shake kingdoms;

    17That made the world as a wilderness, and destroyed the cities thereof; that opened not the house of his prisoners?

    Has this actually been explained in preterist system? I see a great deal about the events of 70 AD in relation to the Parousia of Christ, but not much about the defeat of evil.

    Can it be that the period AFTER the millenium (the indeterminate time when God’s people are dwelling side-by-side in a world that still has wolves and snakes in it) that satan is loosed in order to bring about his FINAL destruction?

    I have often wondered what purpose is going to be served by him being restrained during the millenium and then let loose for a little season, if the millenium is going to be some kind of utopian spot on earth. Wouldn’t it be a spoiling of paradise? But what if satan’s release is all about the creation of a crisis of worldwide proportions that finally brings about a seriousness in the world’s consciousness to turn to Jesus, both in the church and without? Would we not see a time of conversion such as the world has never seen?

    Just some alternate thinking… You guys can carry it from there! 🙄

  • Doug,

    Thanks for the questions. Scripture seems clear that the events at the end of the Millennium were to coincide with the Second Coming and the Resurrection of 1 Cor 15 (see my post, “The Millennium and the Resurrection of the Dead“). What Scripture can you point to that demands something yet to be fulfilled?

    You are troubled by evil continuing, and want to see a stop put to it, but when you consider that there was evil even in the supposedly pristine, ideal Garden, there doesn’t seem to be a scriptural promise of such. I mean, weren’t things prophesied to be set aright in grandiose terms with the multiple “days of the Lord” against each two-bit nation in the OT? But evil continued afterwards. There is, to my mind, no way getting around the correlation of the events prophesied in Matthew 24 with the events Paul referred to in Thessalonians 4, nor the possibility of differentiating between what he said there and in 1 Corinthians 15, nor between what he said in 1 Corinthians 15 and Revelation 20. It’s all tied in together.

  • Doug,

    Thanks for the questions. Scripture seems clear that the events at the end of the Millennium were to coincide with the Second Coming and the Resurrection of 1 Cor 15 (see my post, “The Millennium and the Resurrection of the Dead“). What Scripture can you point to that demands something yet to be fulfilled?

    You are troubled by evil continuing, and want to see a stop put to it, but when you consider that there was evil even in the supposedly pristine, ideal Garden, there doesn’t seem to be a scriptural promise of such. I mean, weren’t things prophesied to be set aright in grandiose terms with the multiple “days of the Lord” against each two-bit nation in the OT? But evil continued afterwards. There is, to my mind, no way getting around the correlation of the events prophesied in Matthew 24 with the events Paul referred to in Thessalonians 4, nor the possibility of differentiating between what he said there and in 1 Corinthians 15, nor between what he said in 1 Corinthians 15 and Revelation 20. It’s all tied in together.

  • Also, Doug, you asked,

    Has this actually been explained in preterist system? I see a great deal about the events of 70 AD in relation to the Parousia of Christ, but not much about the defeat of evil.

    This has been addressed. Check this out, for instance. Also, from a non-preterist, read this thought-provoking post.

  • Also, Doug, you asked,

    Has this actually been explained in preterist system? I see a great deal about the events of 70 AD in relation to the Parousia of Christ, but not much about the defeat of evil.

    This has been addressed. Check this out, for instance. Also, from a non-preterist, read this thought-provoking post.

  • Joseph

    Hello everyone. I’m Joseph and I’d like to share with you some thoughts about my Preterist position.

    As a young child, I was primarily taught Futurism. It wasn’t until the mid 90’s that I began my studies on Matthew 24, and Revelation, and noted the comparisons. A minister of mine (in the past) didn’t preach preterism to me, but simply said, “Study it again…” as he reacted to my Jack Vanimpie videos. *Laughs* He apparently knew that the best way for me to learn these things was to carefully study it myself, without preaching it to me. My first transition into Preterism was the phrase, “they shall say to the hills, ‘hide us’ and to the Mountains, ‘fall on us….” I noted that Revelation matched with the words of Christ, regarding the quoted passage. After careful review, I told my minister, “You know what? I’m starting to think that Revelation had to do with the destruction of Jerusalem and the temple!” His reply was, “Now I think you’re getting somewhere!” That single moment changed my understanding of eschatology, from Futurism to Preterism.

    Now, about the 1000 years, I too have been confused (probably still am) about this teaching, but I’d be glad to offer my theories. A full Preterist would state that the 1000 years represented the time of David to Christ, or the 40 year ministry of the Apostles. I have a difficult time accepting that, and here’s why.

    When we read Revelation 20, we note that John saw thrones, and those who sat upon them, prior to the Millennium. John then lists supporting details about the resurrection of the Martyrs, and the binding of Satan for the 1000 years until such time for his release. We cannot assume that Satan was bound during the 40 years, because Peter referred to Satan as a roaring lion searching for someone to devour. Paul also mentions that Satan would soon be crushed under His (Christ) feet. Therefore, the idea that the Millennium is prior to Jerusalem’s destruction would not work.

    Now getting back to the Thrones, skip down to verse 11 (or was it 14), John starts talking about the Great White Throne, and He who was seated upon the Throne. Now compare this with Daniel chapter 7, and you’ll see that Daniel only mentions one set of thrones being established in a single moment of our time (mid 60’s AD probably), where the “Ancient of days took his seat, and books were opened…..” Daniel only refers to a single event for the Throne, but then shows that its reign is forever and ever. John, however, seems to speak of thrones set up prior to the Millennium, and finally after the Millennium. This would seem to indicate Thrones being set-up in two spaces of time, with Christ being seated after the Millennium. But is this correct? I don’t think so.

    What’s my resolution to this? There aren’t two moments in time when the Thrones are established; Daniel proves that this throne was set-up when the judgment was to occur on the 4rth Beast (particularly the 11th horn). I believe the 4rth Beast was none other than the Roman Empire of the 1st century. John must have been seeing the exact same thing. Even so, how do we explain the 1000 years?

    Answer: The 1000 years is not a limit for the rule of Christ or the Martyrs (for they are still ruling now) The 1000 years is a limit for Satan’s binding, and his final army used to attack the Church after his release. It is then that his rebuilt army surrounds the camp of the Saints, but fire (or wrath) comes down from heaven and devours them, and the Devil who deceived them was cast into the lake of fire. At this time, the judgment of the dead is even larger. Can anyone argue that our population (in our day) is not larger than that of the first century? Thus, I believe the Judgment began in the first century, and continues even through our day.

    What do I mean by all of this? The Throne, the New Jerusalem, and eternal gifts of the cleansing waters (The Holy Spirit) are eternal. The 1000 years is not a limiting factor for Christ, but for Satan. This means that Satan was not sentenced to the LOF in the first century, but continued with Rome (His Beastly kingdom) even after Jerusalem was destroyed. Here’s what I mean.

    Go back to Revelation 19 (or 18 I think) and you’ll see that the Harlot (Jerusalem) is first destroyed by the Beast. The beast, after its victory over the Harlot, attacks the rider on the white horse (Christ). But He kills the Beast, and those who followed the Beast. The rest were killed by the double edged sword that came out of the mouth of Christ. This is the Roman Empire against the Church. Now what happened in the first few centuries against the Church (at the hands of the Romans) matches this perfectly. The Beast that killed the Harlot (False Jerusalem 70 AD) was concentrating all of its effort against the Church; the offspring of Israel….the Israel of God…..the rider on the white horse. But Christ eventually wins this one.

    It’s at this point that Satan is bound for the 1000 years, which in my opinion simply means, “A LONG TIME”. Afterwards, Satan is released to AGAIN DECEIVE the nations on the 4 corners of the earth (keep in mind that they once believed the earth was squared). Now this should show you that Satan deceived the nations during the Old Testament days, was given a little time during the ministry of the Saints, and after 70AD, he was bound, probably when Rome fell to the Church. But sometime later, probably the Spanish Inquisition, or perhaps yet to come, Satan is unbound and gathers his massive army to surround the camp of the Saints. This is the Church. Camp, in the Old Testament, was a place where those who were keeping themselves pure, were to assemble for battle; they had to remain pure for 7 or so days (exact amount of time unknown; refer to Deuteronomy). In our case, our battle is not with flesh and blood, but with evil forces.

    Yes folks, I’m beginning to believe that Satan is using his army to attack the Church…I myself believe that Satan was released some time ago, and is currently attacking the Church through ISLAM! Or perhaps using false churches….or not at all….he’s still bound….but is he? Again, this conclusion is my theory, not my fact.

    I’m interested in your comments.

    Joseph

  • Joseph

    Hello everyone. I’m Joseph and I’d like to share with you some thoughts about my Preterist position.

    As a young child, I was primarily taught Futurism. It wasn’t until the mid 90’s that I began my studies on Matthew 24, and Revelation, and noted the comparisons. A minister of mine (in the past) didn’t preach preterism to me, but simply said, “Study it again…” as he reacted to my Jack Vanimpie videos. *Laughs* He apparently knew that the best way for me to learn these things was to carefully study it myself, without preaching it to me. My first transition into Preterism was the phrase, “they shall say to the hills, ‘hide us’ and to the Mountains, ‘fall on us….” I noted that Revelation matched with the words of Christ, regarding the quoted passage. After careful review, I told my minister, “You know what? I’m starting to think that Revelation had to do with the destruction of Jerusalem and the temple!” His reply was, “Now I think you’re getting somewhere!” That single moment changed my understanding of eschatology, from Futurism to Preterism.

    Now, about the 1000 years, I too have been confused (probably still am) about this teaching, but I’d be glad to offer my theories. A full Preterist would state that the 1000 years represented the time of David to Christ, or the 40 year ministry of the Apostles. I have a difficult time accepting that, and here’s why.

    When we read Revelation 20, we note that John saw thrones, and those who sat upon them, prior to the Millennium. John then lists supporting details about the resurrection of the Martyrs, and the binding of Satan for the 1000 years until such time for his release. We cannot assume that Satan was bound during the 40 years, because Peter referred to Satan as a roaring lion searching for someone to devour. Paul also mentions that Satan would soon be crushed under His (Christ) feet. Therefore, the idea that the Millennium is prior to Jerusalem’s destruction would not work.

    Now getting back to the Thrones, skip down to verse 11 (or was it 14), John starts talking about the Great White Throne, and He who was seated upon the Throne. Now compare this with Daniel chapter 7, and you’ll see that Daniel only mentions one set of thrones being established in a single moment of our time (mid 60’s AD probably), where the “Ancient of days took his seat, and books were opened…..” Daniel only refers to a single event for the Throne, but then shows that its reign is forever and ever. John, however, seems to speak of thrones set up prior to the Millennium, and finally after the Millennium. This would seem to indicate Thrones being set-up in two spaces of time, with Christ being seated after the Millennium. But is this correct? I don’t think so.

    What’s my resolution to this? There aren’t two moments in time when the Thrones are established; Daniel proves that this throne was set-up when the judgment was to occur on the 4rth Beast (particularly the 11th horn). I believe the 4rth Beast was none other than the Roman Empire of the 1st century. John must have been seeing the exact same thing. Even so, how do we explain the 1000 years?

    Answer: The 1000 years is not a limit for the rule of Christ or the Martyrs (for they are still ruling now) The 1000 years is a limit for Satan’s binding, and his final army used to attack the Church after his release. It is then that his rebuilt army surrounds the camp of the Saints, but fire (or wrath) comes down from heaven and devours them, and the Devil who deceived them was cast into the lake of fire. At this time, the judgment of the dead is even larger. Can anyone argue that our population (in our day) is not larger than that of the first century? Thus, I believe the Judgment began in the first century, and continues even through our day.

    What do I mean by all of this? The Throne, the New Jerusalem, and eternal gifts of the cleansing waters (The Holy Spirit) are eternal. The 1000 years is not a limiting factor for Christ, but for Satan. This means that Satan was not sentenced to the LOF in the first century, but continued with Rome (His Beastly kingdom) even after Jerusalem was destroyed. Here’s what I mean.

    Go back to Revelation 19 (or 18 I think) and you’ll see that the Harlot (Jerusalem) is first destroyed by the Beast. The beast, after its victory over the Harlot, attacks the rider on the white horse (Christ). But He kills the Beast, and those who followed the Beast. The rest were killed by the double edged sword that came out of the mouth of Christ. This is the Roman Empire against the Church. Now what happened in the first few centuries against the Church (at the hands of the Romans) matches this perfectly. The Beast that killed the Harlot (False Jerusalem 70 AD) was concentrating all of its effort against the Church; the offspring of Israel….the Israel of God…..the rider on the white horse. But Christ eventually wins this one.

    It’s at this point that Satan is bound for the 1000 years, which in my opinion simply means, “A LONG TIME”. Afterwards, Satan is released to AGAIN DECEIVE the nations on the 4 corners of the earth (keep in mind that they once believed the earth was squared). Now this should show you that Satan deceived the nations during the Old Testament days, was given a little time during the ministry of the Saints, and after 70AD, he was bound, probably when Rome fell to the Church. But sometime later, probably the Spanish Inquisition, or perhaps yet to come, Satan is unbound and gathers his massive army to surround the camp of the Saints. This is the Church. Camp, in the Old Testament, was a place where those who were keeping themselves pure, were to assemble for battle; they had to remain pure for 7 or so days (exact amount of time unknown; refer to Deuteronomy). In our case, our battle is not with flesh and blood, but with evil forces.

    Yes folks, I’m beginning to believe that Satan is using his army to attack the Church…I myself believe that Satan was released some time ago, and is currently attacking the Church through ISLAM! Or perhaps using false churches….or not at all….he’s still bound….but is he? Again, this conclusion is my theory, not my fact.

    I’m interested in your comments.

    Joseph

  • Joseph

    Oh, and if anyone is interested. I’d like to invite you to the Biblewheel.com forum. We’re trying to build a nice gathering of debator’s on Preterism, Futurism, Historicism. Here’s a link if anyone is interested. My user ID is “TheForgiven”.

    http://biblewheel.com/Forum/forumdisplay.php?f=18

    Any eschatology is welcomed… :o)

    Joseph

  • Joseph

    Oh, and if anyone is interested. I’d like to invite you to the Biblewheel.com forum. We’re trying to build a nice gathering of debator’s on Preterism, Futurism, Historicism. Here’s a link if anyone is interested. My user ID is “TheForgiven”.

    http://biblewheel.com/Forum/forumdisplay.php?f=18

    Any eschatology is welcomed… :o)

    Joseph

  • Doug Moody

    Hi Joseph,

    It sounds like at least ONE person in the world thinks as I on this topic. Thanks for the reinforcing view.

  • Doug Moody

    Hi Joseph,

    It sounds like at least ONE person in the world thinks as I on this topic. Thanks for the reinforcing view.

  • Joseph

    You’re very welcome Moody.

    I’ve been a Full Preterist for about fix years now, bouncing back and forth between Partial and Full Preterism. Like you, the Millennium continues to cause tremendous heart burns for the Full Preterist position.

    I for one know without a doubt that the New Jerusalem is the Church. We, spiritually, comprise the New Jerusalem. [I’ll explain the meaning of the different stones, pearls, jewels, and sort later] The New Jerusalem provides water which runs from the city. Is this water literal? No, it can’t be. For the “true” water that Christ often spoke of was [is] the Holy Spirit. The story of Christ and the Samaritan woman proves this, that the Holy Spirit is the water which wells up to eternal life. At the end of Revelation, we see an invitation to partake “FOR FREE” the gift of the water of life. Now if the New Jerusalem is future, then how could this water be offered today? You and I are still helpless, without a helper to guide, councel, rebuke, encourage, and instruct us, if the Holy Spirit has not come. But we know it has come, will come, just as the free invitation states in Revelation.

    The likeness is towards the tree of life (Which is Christ), the leaves for the healing of the nations, and the fruit which is produced monthly. Is this literal? No, I believe the leaves represent covering from extreme sun-heat, symbolically representing the story of Jonah, who sat in a hot wilderness watching if God was going to destroy the city. But because God didn’t, he became depressed, and God grew a small tree to offer cover from the heat. But the leaf whithered and he once again became depressed. In short, the leaves which heal the nations (because of Satan’s corruption of the past) are a representation of the Church offering refuge and comfort to the nations. The nations that serve God All-Mighty are somewhat protected from evil; not by force, but by choice. But when we choose to abandon our God, He will let us wander in the wilderness of desert-like heat, figuratively speaking.

    The fruits are the righteous gifts shared among the Saints.

    There’s much more, but the 1000 years is not, in my opinion, something that should be used as a time-clock for Christ. For His rule, along with the Martyrs of the first century, as far as I can tell, is forever and ever, and established now. So I realized that the Throne’s are not two separate thrones in two distinct times, but one throne ruling through the times, which means the New Jerusalem came upon the earth in the first century, after the Harlot (Jerusalem) was destroyed, and the new wife, the bride of the lamb, is ready for the wedding, which happened AFTER 70 AD, whether immediately or slightly after is another question.

    That brings me to my last point. Notice how the “WEDDING” occurs after the Harlot is destroyed, and how the “BRIDE” is prepared after the 1000 years are completed (Not ended, but completed or fulfilled). I mean, how are we to understand that? If the wedding invitations are sent out after the Harlot is destroyed (70 AD), then how could their be a wedding some several 1000 years later? Why was the “BRIDE” being dressed as an “adorned bride” after the completion of the Millennium? Who among us asks our wives to put on their wedding gown 40+ years or so, after our marriage? Do you see what I’m getting at?

    Therefore, the thrones, the wedding, the marriage, and the eternal reign all began in the first century. But the Chillias (The Thousands of years) began in the first century, and continues for ever and ever. But Satan’s time is limitted; we must not get confused about the 1000 years; that has only to do with Satan’s time.

    Brothers and Sisters….OUR TIME IS ETERNAL! The only question is, which eternity do we choose?

    Joseph

  • Joseph

    You’re very welcome Moody.

    I’ve been a Full Preterist for about fix years now, bouncing back and forth between Partial and Full Preterism. Like you, the Millennium continues to cause tremendous heart burns for the Full Preterist position.

    I for one know without a doubt that the New Jerusalem is the Church. We, spiritually, comprise the New Jerusalem. [I’ll explain the meaning of the different stones, pearls, jewels, and sort later] The New Jerusalem provides water which runs from the city. Is this water literal? No, it can’t be. For the “true” water that Christ often spoke of was [is] the Holy Spirit. The story of Christ and the Samaritan woman proves this, that the Holy Spirit is the water which wells up to eternal life. At the end of Revelation, we see an invitation to partake “FOR FREE” the gift of the water of life. Now if the New Jerusalem is future, then how could this water be offered today? You and I are still helpless, without a helper to guide, councel, rebuke, encourage, and instruct us, if the Holy Spirit has not come. But we know it has come, will come, just as the free invitation states in Revelation.

    The likeness is towards the tree of life (Which is Christ), the leaves for the healing of the nations, and the fruit which is produced monthly. Is this literal? No, I believe the leaves represent covering from extreme sun-heat, symbolically representing the story of Jonah, who sat in a hot wilderness watching if God was going to destroy the city. But because God didn’t, he became depressed, and God grew a small tree to offer cover from the heat. But the leaf whithered and he once again became depressed. In short, the leaves which heal the nations (because of Satan’s corruption of the past) are a representation of the Church offering refuge and comfort to the nations. The nations that serve God All-Mighty are somewhat protected from evil; not by force, but by choice. But when we choose to abandon our God, He will let us wander in the wilderness of desert-like heat, figuratively speaking.

    The fruits are the righteous gifts shared among the Saints.

    There’s much more, but the 1000 years is not, in my opinion, something that should be used as a time-clock for Christ. For His rule, along with the Martyrs of the first century, as far as I can tell, is forever and ever, and established now. So I realized that the Throne’s are not two separate thrones in two distinct times, but one throne ruling through the times, which means the New Jerusalem came upon the earth in the first century, after the Harlot (Jerusalem) was destroyed, and the new wife, the bride of the lamb, is ready for the wedding, which happened AFTER 70 AD, whether immediately or slightly after is another question.

    That brings me to my last point. Notice how the “WEDDING” occurs after the Harlot is destroyed, and how the “BRIDE” is prepared after the 1000 years are completed (Not ended, but completed or fulfilled). I mean, how are we to understand that? If the wedding invitations are sent out after the Harlot is destroyed (70 AD), then how could their be a wedding some several 1000 years later? Why was the “BRIDE” being dressed as an “adorned bride” after the completion of the Millennium? Who among us asks our wives to put on their wedding gown 40+ years or so, after our marriage? Do you see what I’m getting at?

    Therefore, the thrones, the wedding, the marriage, and the eternal reign all began in the first century. But the Chillias (The Thousands of years) began in the first century, and continues for ever and ever. But Satan’s time is limitted; we must not get confused about the 1000 years; that has only to do with Satan’s time.

    Brothers and Sisters….OUR TIME IS ETERNAL! The only question is, which eternity do we choose?

    Joseph

  • Welcome, Joseph! Glad to have you 🙂

    Let me start off by saying that Jesus said in Luke 21.22, referring to the destruction of Jerusalem, “These are the days of vengeance, to fulfill all that has been written.” Lest someone respond, “But Revelation had not been written yet,” let me point out that Revelation itself puts a time frame on its fulfillment in both its first and last chapters (1.1, 22.10). That’s where I am on that issue.

    Moreover, given the relative clarity outside of Revelation (particularly the Gospels and the epistles), I will not let such an obscure book of the Bible as Revelation determine my eschatological view one way or another (Luther even doubted its canonicity – as have I). The teaching on the millennium is either isolated to the first part of that one chapter (as presumably you and Doug would say) or it correlates with something described in another manner elsewhere, and I’m confident that elsewhere you’ve got full preterism cut and dry. I can’t imagine letting a few verses out of an already vague, symbolic book, teachings delivered in apparent isolation of all other biblical teachings, determine my entire eschatology. That said, I do think there are answers to some of your questions about the millennium.

    For one, you said,

    We cannot assume that Satan was bound during the 40 years, because Peter referred to Satan as a roaring lion searching for someone to devour. Paul also mentions that Satan would soon be crushed under His (Christ) feet.

    Peter and Paul were both writing in the last part of the 40 year period. Too, I have a hard time saying that Satan being “crushed” soon under Christ’s feet corresponded to merely being bound (with one last hurrah in the future) and not his being cast into the Lake of Fire. “Crushed” sounds like “finished”, not “sitting on death row for a thousand and some years, followed by an escape and a few more jollies at God’s expense for a few centuries, and then being finished off”. 😉

    Don’t have time to respond to all the interesting things you said at the moment, but with any luck I’ll find some time real soon to engage what you said. I especially appreciate your closing thoughts on your last comment about not getting hung up on the millennium.

    I’m glad you came by! I’ll check out Biblewheel.com – thank you for the recommendation.

  • Welcome, Joseph! Glad to have you 🙂

    Let me start off by saying that Jesus said in Luke 21.22, referring to the destruction of Jerusalem, “These are the days of vengeance, to fulfill all that has been written.” Lest someone respond, “But Revelation had not been written yet,” let me point out that Revelation itself puts a time frame on its fulfillment in both its first and last chapters (1.1, 22.10). That’s where I am on that issue.

    Moreover, given the relative clarity outside of Revelation (particularly the Gospels and the epistles), I will not let such an obscure book of the Bible as Revelation determine my eschatological view one way or another (Luther even doubted its canonicity – as have I). The teaching on the millennium is either isolated to the first part of that one chapter (as presumably you and Doug would say) or it correlates with something described in another manner elsewhere, and I’m confident that elsewhere you’ve got full preterism cut and dry. I can’t imagine letting a few verses out of an already vague, symbolic book, teachings delivered in apparent isolation of all other biblical teachings, determine my entire eschatology. That said, I do think there are answers to some of your questions about the millennium.

    For one, you said,

    We cannot assume that Satan was bound during the 40 years, because Peter referred to Satan as a roaring lion searching for someone to devour. Paul also mentions that Satan would soon be crushed under His (Christ) feet.

    Peter and Paul were both writing in the last part of the 40 year period. Too, I have a hard time saying that Satan being “crushed” soon under Christ’s feet corresponded to merely being bound (with one last hurrah in the future) and not his being cast into the Lake of Fire. “Crushed” sounds like “finished”, not “sitting on death row for a thousand and some years, followed by an escape and a few more jollies at God’s expense for a few centuries, and then being finished off”. 😉

    Don’t have time to respond to all the interesting things you said at the moment, but with any luck I’ll find some time real soon to engage what you said. I especially appreciate your closing thoughts on your last comment about not getting hung up on the millennium.

    I’m glad you came by! I’ll check out Biblewheel.com – thank you for the recommendation.

  • Joseph

    Hello Steve, and thank you so kindly for the warm welcome.

    I invite everyone to the Biblewheel forum. There we have great debates occuring, although a few other members appear to be busy at the moment.

    Thank you for answering my questions, and I look forward to your other responses.

    Regarding Satan being crushed, I believe He was crushed in the first century, but I don’t believe “crushed” necessarily means killed. It was his kingdom, and his reign that was crushed, when Christ took His power and poured out gifts to expand His kingdom. By 70 AD, the kingdom was ready to take charge against the nations, though not in a war against flesh and blood, but against the evil forces all throughout Asia Minor, and so forth. Emperor Trajan, in the late 1st century, set up a throne in one of the seven churches, “Where Satan’s throne is”, thus proving that Satan was still quite active. Only this time, it wasn’t against the Jews, but against the Christians throughout the Empire.

    Now regarding the date, I’m like you; I believe Revelation written in the early 60’s AD. At the same time, I can see strong support for a late dating, while still hold to its fulfillment in 70AD. Why? Because Revelation, in my opinion, was preparing the Gentile Christians for what was about to come upon them. Thus, I kind of believe that Revelation was used as a book to catch them up on current events, and the reason those events took place (specifically, the destruction of the Harlot). But just as they were murdered by the reign of Nero Caesar, I additional Beasts were about the attack them. We know this happened accordingly, as also recorded by Eusebius in the 3rd century. According to certain historical records, and by Eusebius, there were about 10 major Christian persecutions which took place until the early 3rd century, by which time the Church had gain total dominion and control over the Empire. What was formerly “Roman” had become “Christian”.

    In Revelation, there’s the man “Antipas” the faithful witness who suffered Martyrdom. I believe he was killed by Emperior Domitian in the late 80’s AD, according to Greek Orthodox and RCC tradition. If this account was true, then there is no way that Revelation was written in the 60’s AD.

    In conclusion, it’s not necessary that Revelation was a preparation for the Jewish calamity. Rather, a preparation for the suffering and misery the Gentile Christians were about to suffer. During the Neronean persecution, that was primarily against Christians in Rome. But by the time Domitian took office, and beyond, Christians all throughout the Roman dominate territories suffered intensely by authorities. The story of Perpetua is a saddened, though encouraging story of a young rich woman who gave herself to the Lord; of which both she and her Bishop were sentenced to death in the Arena.

    I’ve much more to say but I’ll await your response my dear friend. Again, thanks for the welcome.

    with Gods love,

    Joseph

  • Joseph

    Hello Steve, and thank you so kindly for the warm welcome.

    I invite everyone to the Biblewheel forum. There we have great debates occuring, although a few other members appear to be busy at the moment.

    Thank you for answering my questions, and I look forward to your other responses.

    Regarding Satan being crushed, I believe He was crushed in the first century, but I don’t believe “crushed” necessarily means killed. It was his kingdom, and his reign that was crushed, when Christ took His power and poured out gifts to expand His kingdom. By 70 AD, the kingdom was ready to take charge against the nations, though not in a war against flesh and blood, but against the evil forces all throughout Asia Minor, and so forth. Emperor Trajan, in the late 1st century, set up a throne in one of the seven churches, “Where Satan’s throne is”, thus proving that Satan was still quite active. Only this time, it wasn’t against the Jews, but against the Christians throughout the Empire.

    Now regarding the date, I’m like you; I believe Revelation written in the early 60’s AD. At the same time, I can see strong support for a late dating, while still hold to its fulfillment in 70AD. Why? Because Revelation, in my opinion, was preparing the Gentile Christians for what was about to come upon them. Thus, I kind of believe that Revelation was used as a book to catch them up on current events, and the reason those events took place (specifically, the destruction of the Harlot). But just as they were murdered by the reign of Nero Caesar, I additional Beasts were about the attack them. We know this happened accordingly, as also recorded by Eusebius in the 3rd century. According to certain historical records, and by Eusebius, there were about 10 major Christian persecutions which took place until the early 3rd century, by which time the Church had gain total dominion and control over the Empire. What was formerly “Roman” had become “Christian”.

    In Revelation, there’s the man “Antipas” the faithful witness who suffered Martyrdom. I believe he was killed by Emperior Domitian in the late 80’s AD, according to Greek Orthodox and RCC tradition. If this account was true, then there is no way that Revelation was written in the 60’s AD.

    In conclusion, it’s not necessary that Revelation was a preparation for the Jewish calamity. Rather, a preparation for the suffering and misery the Gentile Christians were about to suffer. During the Neronean persecution, that was primarily against Christians in Rome. But by the time Domitian took office, and beyond, Christians all throughout the Roman dominate territories suffered intensely by authorities. The story of Perpetua is a saddened, though encouraging story of a young rich woman who gave herself to the Lord; of which both she and her Bishop were sentenced to death in the Arena.

    I’ve much more to say but I’ll await your response my dear friend. Again, thanks for the welcome.

    with Gods love,

    Joseph

  • Joseph,

    Thanks for that thoughtful comment! I’ve wondered for some time if what we have in Revelation is not predictive prophecy, but more like insight into non-future events. In this view, Revelation was written after the fact as a way of giving meaning to the events that had occurred and, as you mentioned, to encourage believers throughout the ages undergoing similar circumstances.

    I find this view intriguing, and it would actually fall in with the hunch I’ve had for a couple years now that Revelation shouldn’t really be the determining factor for eschatology. I hold the teachings of Jesus (naturally) and Paul as covering the key eschatological events well enough to formulate an accurate eschatological paradigm. Revelation – well, you can make it mean almost anything you want to. Jesus and Paul: crystal clear.

    Anyway, gotta get back to work… 🙂

  • Joseph,

    Thanks for that thoughtful comment! I’ve wondered for some time if what we have in Revelation is not predictive prophecy, but more like insight into non-future events. In this view, Revelation was written after the fact as a way of giving meaning to the events that had occurred and, as you mentioned, to encourage believers throughout the ages undergoing similar circumstances.

    I find this view intriguing, and it would actually fall in with the hunch I’ve had for a couple years now that Revelation shouldn’t really be the determining factor for eschatology. I hold the teachings of Jesus (naturally) and Paul as covering the key eschatological events well enough to formulate an accurate eschatological paradigm. Revelation – well, you can make it mean almost anything you want to. Jesus and Paul: crystal clear.

    Anyway, gotta get back to work… 🙂

  • Joseph

    Joseph,

    Thanks for that thoughtful comment! I’ve wondered for some time if what we have in Revelation is not predictive prophecy, but more like insight into non-future events. In this view, Revelation was written after the fact as a way of giving meaning to the events that had occurred and, as you mentioned, to encourage believers throughout the ages undergoing similar circumstances.

    I find this view intriguing, and it would actually fall in with the hunch I’ve had for a couple years now that Revelation shouldn’t really be the determining factor for eschatology. I hold the teachings of Jesus (naturally) and Paul as covering the key eschatological events well enough to formulate an accurate eschatological paradigm. Revelation – well, you can make it mean almost anything you want to. Jesus and Paul: crystal clear.

    Anyway, gotta get back to work…

    Hello again Steve, and I thank you for your interest in my post.

    Regarding Revelation being prophetic, there’s a passage which states, “For the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of Prophecy..” I beleive what this means is that Revelation was not necessarily a book of prophesy, but a book of testimony. At the same time, there were many aspects that were yet to be fulfilled, though not in its entirety; at least that’s my opinion.

    Imagine, if you will, living in the mid 2nd century, and authorities within different parts of the inhabited world, were given permission to place you on a trial because you refused to partake of sacrificial meat, or offers incense to the gods that existed in those days. You find yourself taken in chains, and tossed into a prison where its cold, wet, and left to starve. What was Revelation do for you, if you had a copy of it? Would it not inpsire you to remain faithful? Would it not encourage you to prepare yourself for the worste, knowing that the outcome of your faithfulness was a crown of eternal life?

    Jesus sent a message to the seven churches of Asia Minor (Now present day Turkey) to warn them about the events they were about to suffer. Seven Churches receive these messages, and one was told that they would be tortured for 10 days, but if they remained faithful, even to the sight of death, they would be rewarded the crown of life. Some believe Christ was referring to the intense persecution which took place during the reign of Marcus Aulerius (spelling), who was responsible for the death of one of the ECF; I believe it was either Polycarp, or Ignatius.

    After the warnings to the Churches, Revelation begins to testify about Christ. It speaks about the birth of a woman, who gives birth to a male child (obviously Christ), and how this woman is led into the wilderness, just like the children being led out of Egypt. Later, this Beast attacks the woman that rides on its back…this was Rome attacking Jerusalem. Finally, the Harlot is destroyed, and the Beast begins to take its attack towards the rest of her offspring….the Christian Church. It is at this point the seven Churches needed to embrace itself for very horrible times.

    This is not my fact, but my soft opinion.

    Any comments?

    Joseph

  • Joseph

    Joseph,

    Thanks for that thoughtful comment! I’ve wondered for some time if what we have in Revelation is not predictive prophecy, but more like insight into non-future events. In this view, Revelation was written after the fact as a way of giving meaning to the events that had occurred and, as you mentioned, to encourage believers throughout the ages undergoing similar circumstances.

    I find this view intriguing, and it would actually fall in with the hunch I’ve had for a couple years now that Revelation shouldn’t really be the determining factor for eschatology. I hold the teachings of Jesus (naturally) and Paul as covering the key eschatological events well enough to formulate an accurate eschatological paradigm. Revelation – well, you can make it mean almost anything you want to. Jesus and Paul: crystal clear.

    Anyway, gotta get back to work…

    Hello again Steve, and I thank you for your interest in my post.

    Regarding Revelation being prophetic, there’s a passage which states, “For the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of Prophecy..” I beleive what this means is that Revelation was not necessarily a book of prophesy, but a book of testimony. At the same time, there were many aspects that were yet to be fulfilled, though not in its entirety; at least that’s my opinion.

    Imagine, if you will, living in the mid 2nd century, and authorities within different parts of the inhabited world, were given permission to place you on a trial because you refused to partake of sacrificial meat, or offers incense to the gods that existed in those days. You find yourself taken in chains, and tossed into a prison where its cold, wet, and left to starve. What was Revelation do for you, if you had a copy of it? Would it not inpsire you to remain faithful? Would it not encourage you to prepare yourself for the worste, knowing that the outcome of your faithfulness was a crown of eternal life?

    Jesus sent a message to the seven churches of Asia Minor (Now present day Turkey) to warn them about the events they were about to suffer. Seven Churches receive these messages, and one was told that they would be tortured for 10 days, but if they remained faithful, even to the sight of death, they would be rewarded the crown of life. Some believe Christ was referring to the intense persecution which took place during the reign of Marcus Aulerius (spelling), who was responsible for the death of one of the ECF; I believe it was either Polycarp, or Ignatius.

    After the warnings to the Churches, Revelation begins to testify about Christ. It speaks about the birth of a woman, who gives birth to a male child (obviously Christ), and how this woman is led into the wilderness, just like the children being led out of Egypt. Later, this Beast attacks the woman that rides on its back…this was Rome attacking Jerusalem. Finally, the Harlot is destroyed, and the Beast begins to take its attack towards the rest of her offspring….the Christian Church. It is at this point the seven Churches needed to embrace itself for very horrible times.

    This is not my fact, but my soft opinion.

    Any comments?

    Joseph

  • Patrick Stone

    Josh asked:
    “So why would John say “1000 years” when he meant about 40 years (from 33AD to 70AD). ”

    Two possibilites. (A) We must remember that the reign of the saints refers to the reign of those in Heaven with Christ.

    Rev 20:4 … and [I saw] the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God,…and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years.

    If this refers to the reign of the saints with Christ in Heaven, then we can appeal to Peter:

    2 Pe 3:7 But the heavens and the earth, which are now, by the same word are kept in store, reserved unto fire against the day of judgment and perdition of ungodly men.
    2 Pe 3:8 But, beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day [is] with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.

    I include 2 Pet 3:7 because it ties the thousand years of 3:8 to the “heavens and earth which are now,” ie: the heavens and earth before 70 AD, before the New Heaven and New Earth.

    (2) I have not done much research on the subject, but I have read that in Jewish thought [I have to check how far this goes back!] the world would exist 6000 years. The last 1000 years would be a time of great renewal (the Great Sabbath).
    [Sanhedrin 97(a); Charts of Bible Prophecy ]. Therefore John may be saying the 1000 years is the final “day” of the Old Covenant “week,” just before the ushering in of the New Heavens and the New Earth and the New Covenant age.

  • Patrick Stone

    Josh asked:
    “So why would John say “1000 years” when he meant about 40 years (from 33AD to 70AD). ”

    Two possibilites. (A) We must remember that the reign of the saints refers to the reign of those in Heaven with Christ.

    Rev 20:4 … and [I saw] the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God,…and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years.

    If this refers to the reign of the saints with Christ in Heaven, then we can appeal to Peter:

    2 Pe 3:7 But the heavens and the earth, which are now, by the same word are kept in store, reserved unto fire against the day of judgment and perdition of ungodly men.
    2 Pe 3:8 But, beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day [is] with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.

    I include 2 Pet 3:7 because it ties the thousand years of 3:8 to the “heavens and earth which are now,” ie: the heavens and earth before 70 AD, before the New Heaven and New Earth.

    (2) I have not done much research on the subject, but I have read that in Jewish thought [I have to check how far this goes back!] the world would exist 6000 years. The last 1000 years would be a time of great renewal (the Great Sabbath).
    [Sanhedrin 97(a); Charts of Bible Prophecy ]. Therefore John may be saying the 1000 years is the final “day” of the Old Covenant “week,” just before the ushering in of the New Heavens and the New Earth and the New Covenant age.

  • Patrick Stone

    Steve said

    “I’ve wondered for some time if what we have in Revelation is not predictive prophecy, but more like insight into non-future events. In this view, Revelation was written after the fact as a way of giving meaning to the events that had occurred and, as you mentioned, to encourage believers throughout the ages undergoing similar circumstances.”

    I absolutely agree. I thought I was the only one that believed Revelation was written after the events to place. I see it as John’s interpretation of the how the war of 67-70AD fulfilled Old Testament and New Testament prophecies. I’m guessing it was written in the form of a ‘prophecy’ because that was a popular genre of the time (e.g.: Enoch).

  • Patrick Stone

    Steve said

    “I’ve wondered for some time if what we have in Revelation is not predictive prophecy, but more like insight into non-future events. In this view, Revelation was written after the fact as a way of giving meaning to the events that had occurred and, as you mentioned, to encourage believers throughout the ages undergoing similar circumstances.”

    I absolutely agree. I thought I was the only one that believed Revelation was written after the events to place. I see it as John’s interpretation of the how the war of 67-70AD fulfilled Old Testament and New Testament prophecies. I’m guessing it was written in the form of a ‘prophecy’ because that was a popular genre of the time (e.g.: Enoch).

  • Patrick Stone

    Josh said

    “I still have trouble with …the “meet the Lord in the air and thus shall we ever be with the Lord” statement in 1 Thess. 4:17.”

    I think John actually gives us the answer to this.

    Rev 19:7 Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour to him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready.

    Rev 19:9 And he saith unto me, Write, Blessed [are] they which are called unto the marriage supper of the Lamb. …

    Rev 21:2 And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.
    Rev 21:3 And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God [is] with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, [and be] their God.

    There are three parties here
    (1) The Lamb – The Husband – Christ
    (2) The Bride – Those in Heaven reigning with Christ
    (3) The Wedding Party – Saints on earth

    The “dead in Christ” (1 Thes 4:16) is the Bride. The wedding party are those who were “alive and remain” (1 Thes 4:17). To meet the Lord in the air refers to the Wedding of the Lamb with the Bride which took place in Heaven (Rev 21:2). Of course as full preterist, I propose they (the living saints) attended the wedding ‘spiritually’ (Rev 21:9,10). They drank of the new covenant wine and ate of the bread (the blood and body of Christ… see Matt 26:26-29).

    “And so shall we ever be with the Lord” refers to the complete establishment of the Church. The living saints, of course, being a part of the body of Christ. Although the Church began during Christ’s ministry (Matt 16:18), it did not come to complete fruition until the gospel was spread to all nations (Matt 24:14, Rev 14:6, Rom 11:25)

    We see this in Revelation as “the tabernacle of God [is] with men” referring to the “Tabernacle of David,” (Acts 15:16, Amos 9:11) The Church.

    I also propose that this also means that the Church post 70AD could enter into God/Christ’s presence more fully than pre-70AD Christians. This is a more detailed argument, but is tied to the use of the phrase “Tabernacle of David” (as opposed to the Tabernacle of Moses) which was based on praise and worship instead of sacrifice and priestly rituals & that the “New Heavens” was essentially, as Chilton describes, Paradise restored (the return to Eden). Thus we could walk freely with God as Adam did, through the atoning blood of Jesus Christ.

  • Patrick Stone

    Josh said

    “I still have trouble with …the “meet the Lord in the air and thus shall we ever be with the Lord” statement in 1 Thess. 4:17.”

    I think John actually gives us the answer to this.

    Rev 19:7 Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour to him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready.

    Rev 19:9 And he saith unto me, Write, Blessed [are] they which are called unto the marriage supper of the Lamb. …

    Rev 21:2 And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.
    Rev 21:3 And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God [is] with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, [and be] their God.

    There are three parties here
    (1) The Lamb – The Husband – Christ
    (2) The Bride – Those in Heaven reigning with Christ
    (3) The Wedding Party – Saints on earth

    The “dead in Christ” (1 Thes 4:16) is the Bride. The wedding party are those who were “alive and remain” (1 Thes 4:17). To meet the Lord in the air refers to the Wedding of the Lamb with the Bride which took place in Heaven (Rev 21:2). Of course as full preterist, I propose they (the living saints) attended the wedding ‘spiritually’ (Rev 21:9,10). They drank of the new covenant wine and ate of the bread (the blood and body of Christ… see Matt 26:26-29).

    “And so shall we ever be with the Lord” refers to the complete establishment of the Church. The living saints, of course, being a part of the body of Christ. Although the Church began during Christ’s ministry (Matt 16:18), it did not come to complete fruition until the gospel was spread to all nations (Matt 24:14, Rev 14:6, Rom 11:25)

    We see this in Revelation as “the tabernacle of God [is] with men” referring to the “Tabernacle of David,” (Acts 15:16, Amos 9:11) The Church.

    I also propose that this also means that the Church post 70AD could enter into God/Christ’s presence more fully than pre-70AD Christians. This is a more detailed argument, but is tied to the use of the phrase “Tabernacle of David” (as opposed to the Tabernacle of Moses) which was based on praise and worship instead of sacrifice and priestly rituals & that the “New Heavens” was essentially, as Chilton describes, Paradise restored (the return to Eden). Thus we could walk freely with God as Adam did, through the atoning blood of Jesus Christ.

  • Patrick,

    Wow, thanks for your contributions, and welcome to the blog!

    We must remember that the reign of the saints refers to the reign of those in Heaven with Christ.

    I have thought that as well. Once we throw off the unnecessary burden required by maintaining that the thousand years have to be indicative of a long temporal period (symbolic of lots and lots of years) and is instead hyperbolic of the significance of the events within the period, other interesting possibilities crop up. For instance, have you ever considered the possibility that the first resurrection did not occur until the Jewish-Roman war began (AD 66) [not the siege, as I stated initially], but rather corresponds to the martyrs’ situation after the fifth seal was broken (Rev. 6.9-11)? In this view, the millennium period was even shorter “in earth years”. The correlation of the recipients of the millennial kingdom in Rev 20 with the saints in Rev 6 is pretty clear, in that both consisted entirely of those who had been martyred for their witness to Jesus in the forty year period. In the time of the Lord’s vengeance, Christ’s reign was revealed in his exercise of judgment, and those who had been crying out for justice in chapter 6 were given “white robes” as participants in the kingdom. That’s a possibility I’ve been considering for a while, anyway.

    I’m guessing it was written in the form of a ‘prophecy’ because that was a popular genre of the time (e.g.: Enoch).

    This makes a lot of sense: why should we expect that the similarities between Revelation and that common genre of prophecy are merely misleadingly coincidental?

    I also propose that this also means that the Church post 70AD could enter into God/Christ’s presence more fully than pre-70AD Christians. This is a more detailed argument, but is tied to the use of the phrase “Tabernacle of David” (as opposed to the Tabernacle of Moses) which was based on praise and worship instead of sacrifice and priestly rituals & that the “New Heavens” was essentially, as Chilton describes, Paradise restored (the return to Eden). Thus we could walk freely with God as Adam did, through the atoning blood of Jesus Christ.

    I agree wholeheartedly that there was a positional difference in being “with the Lord” post-AD70. I see the typology of the AD33-70 years being the tabernacling years for the Church being finished off with the completed temple, the “tabernacle of David”, the “perfect” of 1 Cor 13, in AD 70. Peter again tells us in 1 Pet 2.5 outright, “You also, like living stones, are being built into a spiritual house to be a holy priesthood, offering spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.” For futurists: is that house yet incomplete? What else is needed for us to be able to offer “spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ”?

    I would like to hear your opinions on how exactly the difference between Paul’s situation and the post-AD70 situation is manifested.

    Great stuff, Patrick!

  • Patrick,

    Wow, thanks for your contributions, and welcome to the blog!

    We must remember that the reign of the saints refers to the reign of those in Heaven with Christ.

    I have thought that as well. Once we throw off the unnecessary burden required by maintaining that the thousand years have to be indicative of a long temporal period (symbolic of lots and lots of years) and is instead hyperbolic of the significance of the events within the period, other interesting possibilities crop up. For instance, have you ever considered the possibility that the first resurrection did not occur until the Jewish-Roman war began (AD 66) [not the siege, as I stated initially], but rather corresponds to the martyrs’ situation after the fifth seal was broken (Rev. 6.9-11)? In this view, the millennium period was even shorter “in earth years”. The correlation of the recipients of the millennial kingdom in Rev 20 with the saints in Rev 6 is pretty clear, in that both consisted entirely of those who had been martyred for their witness to Jesus in the forty year period. In the time of the Lord’s vengeance, Christ’s reign was revealed in his exercise of judgment, and those who had been crying out for justice in chapter 6 were given “white robes” as participants in the kingdom. That’s a possibility I’ve been considering for a while, anyway.

    I’m guessing it was written in the form of a ‘prophecy’ because that was a popular genre of the time (e.g.: Enoch).

    This makes a lot of sense: why should we expect that the similarities between Revelation and that common genre of prophecy are merely misleadingly coincidental?

    I also propose that this also means that the Church post 70AD could enter into God/Christ’s presence more fully than pre-70AD Christians. This is a more detailed argument, but is tied to the use of the phrase “Tabernacle of David” (as opposed to the Tabernacle of Moses) which was based on praise and worship instead of sacrifice and priestly rituals & that the “New Heavens” was essentially, as Chilton describes, Paradise restored (the return to Eden). Thus we could walk freely with God as Adam did, through the atoning blood of Jesus Christ.

    I agree wholeheartedly that there was a positional difference in being “with the Lord” post-AD70. I see the typology of the AD33-70 years being the tabernacling years for the Church being finished off with the completed temple, the “tabernacle of David”, the “perfect” of 1 Cor 13, in AD 70. Peter again tells us in 1 Pet 2.5 outright, “You also, like living stones, are being built into a spiritual house to be a holy priesthood, offering spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.” For futurists: is that house yet incomplete? What else is needed for us to be able to offer “spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ”?

    I would like to hear your opinions on how exactly the difference between Paul’s situation and the post-AD70 situation is manifested.

    Great stuff, Patrick!

  • Patrick Stone

    First, thanks for the thumbs up Steve.

    1) I noticed that you have “AD33-70 Ad” above. This is interesting because most preterists favor AD30 for the death, resurrection and ascension of Jesus Christ and most futurist AD33.

    Preterists favor AD30 because it fits the popular preterist interpretation of Daniel’s 70 Weeks best (beginning in 458 AD, with the final half week culimnating in 30AD at the death of Christ), and because it makes a nice symbolic number of 40 years between the ascension of Christ and his return.

    Futurists favor AD33 because it favors the popular futurist interpretation of Daniel’s 70 weeks, beginning in 445 BC with the final week in the unknown future.

    I side with the futurists in this case because I also believe that the final half-week of Daniel’s 70 weeks is none other than the 3.5 year tribulation described in Revelation. Max King, a popular preterist, agrees. The difference, of course, is that we believe the tribulation was between 66-70AD .

    Long story short, this means I favor the AD33 date for the death and resurrection of Christ.

    Just curious on why you had AD33.

    2) You bring up an intriguing point which I had never considered, ie, could the 1000 year reign of the saints with Christ be referring to the 3.5 year tribulation period? There is solid evidence that the binding of Satan was between the death and resurrection of Christ to the beginning of the Tribulation. Thus the 1000 year binding is between (circa) AD33 – 67.

    I’ve always assumed that the 1000 year reign of the saints was synonymous/simultaneous with the binding of Satan. I also assumed the “first” resurrection referred to Christ leading the captives free when he ascended (Eph 4:8) as well as assuming the saints who died between Ad33 – 67 automatically went to Heaven (Rev 6:9). But there is absolutely a line of evidence in favor of your view as well. This will make me have to rethink my idea of the resurrection (the timing, the location of the deceased saints 33-67ad, etc…).

    3) I am still working out for myself what the differences for “pre” and “post” 70 AD saints were.
    Essentially I believe
    a) it is similar to being engaged and being married. before 70 AD – engaged. after 70-AD married. This also implies becoming one with Christ after 70AD, which implies a level of separation before 70 AD. This is confirmed in that the new Heavens had no Temple (therefore no “Holy of Holies” which was the Bridal Chamber, ie, no separation between the bride and Christ in Heaven any more. She is no longer “engaged” but “married” to Christ.)
    b) I have a friend that argues that true salvation was not realized until the Parousia. I tend to agree. I can forward you a link to his arguments if you are interested.
    c1) As for as the spiritual body Paul refers to (1Cor 15:44), I think this is tied to the body of Christ. You may say that they were already part of the body of Christ pre-70 AD, but I would argue that there was still a level of separation between Christ and the living saints pre-70 AD but after 70AD that separation was removed.
    c2) In Acts the Tabernacle of David was to be rebuilt (Acts 15:16), in Revelation the Tabernacle of God is with men (Rev 21:3). Both Tabernacles refer to the Church. Therefore pre-70Ad the Church had not become fully established.
    d) again, I stress I have not fully come to my own conclusions on this matter (especially 1 Cor 15).

    Thanks for you insight into the 1000 years. I will explore this thoroughly.

  • Patrick Stone

    First, thanks for the thumbs up Steve.

    1) I noticed that you have “AD33-70 Ad” above. This is interesting because most preterists favor AD30 for the death, resurrection and ascension of Jesus Christ and most futurist AD33.

    Preterists favor AD30 because it fits the popular preterist interpretation of Daniel’s 70 Weeks best (beginning in 458 AD, with the final half week culimnating in 30AD at the death of Christ), and because it makes a nice symbolic number of 40 years between the ascension of Christ and his return.

    Futurists favor AD33 because it favors the popular futurist interpretation of Daniel’s 70 weeks, beginning in 445 BC with the final week in the unknown future.

    I side with the futurists in this case because I also believe that the final half-week of Daniel’s 70 weeks is none other than the 3.5 year tribulation described in Revelation. Max King, a popular preterist, agrees. The difference, of course, is that we believe the tribulation was between 66-70AD .

    Long story short, this means I favor the AD33 date for the death and resurrection of Christ.

    Just curious on why you had AD33.

    2) You bring up an intriguing point which I had never considered, ie, could the 1000 year reign of the saints with Christ be referring to the 3.5 year tribulation period? There is solid evidence that the binding of Satan was between the death and resurrection of Christ to the beginning of the Tribulation. Thus the 1000 year binding is between (circa) AD33 – 67.

    I’ve always assumed that the 1000 year reign of the saints was synonymous/simultaneous with the binding of Satan. I also assumed the “first” resurrection referred to Christ leading the captives free when he ascended (Eph 4:8) as well as assuming the saints who died between Ad33 – 67 automatically went to Heaven (Rev 6:9). But there is absolutely a line of evidence in favor of your view as well. This will make me have to rethink my idea of the resurrection (the timing, the location of the deceased saints 33-67ad, etc…).

    3) I am still working out for myself what the differences for “pre” and “post” 70 AD saints were.
    Essentially I believe
    a) it is similar to being engaged and being married. before 70 AD – engaged. after 70-AD married. This also implies becoming one with Christ after 70AD, which implies a level of separation before 70 AD. This is confirmed in that the new Heavens had no Temple (therefore no “Holy of Holies” which was the Bridal Chamber, ie, no separation between the bride and Christ in Heaven any more. She is no longer “engaged” but “married” to Christ.)
    b) I have a friend that argues that true salvation was not realized until the Parousia. I tend to agree. I can forward you a link to his arguments if you are interested.
    c1) As for as the spiritual body Paul refers to (1Cor 15:44), I think this is tied to the body of Christ. You may say that they were already part of the body of Christ pre-70 AD, but I would argue that there was still a level of separation between Christ and the living saints pre-70 AD but after 70AD that separation was removed.
    c2) In Acts the Tabernacle of David was to be rebuilt (Acts 15:16), in Revelation the Tabernacle of God is with men (Rev 21:3). Both Tabernacles refer to the Church. Therefore pre-70Ad the Church had not become fully established.
    d) again, I stress I have not fully come to my own conclusions on this matter (especially 1 Cor 15).

    Thanks for you insight into the 1000 years. I will explore this thoroughly.

  • Just curious on why you had AD33.

    To be perfectly honest, I haven’t studied this point at all. In fact, I always assumed AD30 to be the most historically accurate date, but above I absentmindedly used the date Josh wrote above me 🙂 I’ll have to look at the evidence for 33.

    There is solid evidence that the binding of Satan was between the death and resurrection of Christ to the beginning of the Tribulation. Thus the 1000 year binding is between (circa) AD33 – 67.

    I’d love to hear your evidence for this; Satan’s being bound (and now destroyed) is a sticking point for a lot of non-FPs like Josh here. I think it’s odd that we have demonic activity mentioned in Acts, and can only speculate that Peter’s statement about Satan then walking about “like a roaming lion, seeking whom he may devour” was written at the time after which he was released (Rev 20.3b). Thoughts?

    I’ve always assumed that the 1000 year reign of the saints was synonymous/simultaneous with the binding of Satan.

    I must emphasize that I’m only looking into this as a possibility – I’m by no means sold on it. But like you, I think there’s merit to it.

    I also assumed the “first” resurrection referred to Christ leading the captives free when he ascended (Eph 4:8) as well as assuming the saints who died between Ad33 – 67 automatically went to Heaven (Rev 6:9).

    I realize that as the more-or-less standard FP position, but the text does seem to imply Christians as the targets of the First Resurrection by specifically describing them as those who were martyred “because of their testimony for Jesus”, and I think it would be a clear act of obfuscation if the writer meant, as some have suggested, that the pre-Christian Jewish martyrs were really testifying to Jesus in the future. Then again, it could be that the phrase “and because of the word of God” was meant to widen the scope to the OT saints. But then the next sentence again sounds like people in the years close to the siege of Jerusalem, because who else would have had a chance to receive the mark of the beast? Of course the OT saints didn’t worship the image or receive the mark of the beast!

    But there is absolutely a line of evidence in favor of your view as well. This will make me have to rethink my idea of the resurrection (the timing, the location of the deceased saints 33-67ad, etc…).

    Let me know what you find 😉

    I have a friend that argues that true salvation was not realized until the Parousia. I tend to agree. I can forward you a link to his arguments if you are interested.

    I do tend to agree myself, but I’d love to see the link.

    As for as the spiritual body Paul refers to (1Cor 15:44), I think this is tied to the body of Christ.

    Some earlier posts of mine on this topic lean toward the corporate view as well, but it’s not without problems. For one, Paul in Romans 8.11 implies a replacement of mortal bodies (the plural is used). Of course, one might chalk this up to a more logistical explanation of the fate of the individual after death and not a reference to the more figurative and abstract resurrection of the Body.

    Sigh…lots to think about.

  • Just curious on why you had AD33.

    To be perfectly honest, I haven’t studied this point at all. In fact, I always assumed AD30 to be the most historically accurate date, but above I absentmindedly used the date Josh wrote above me 🙂 I’ll have to look at the evidence for 33.

    There is solid evidence that the binding of Satan was between the death and resurrection of Christ to the beginning of the Tribulation. Thus the 1000 year binding is between (circa) AD33 – 67.

    I’d love to hear your evidence for this; Satan’s being bound (and now destroyed) is a sticking point for a lot of non-FPs like Josh here. I think it’s odd that we have demonic activity mentioned in Acts, and can only speculate that Peter’s statement about Satan then walking about “like a roaming lion, seeking whom he may devour” was written at the time after which he was released (Rev 20.3b). Thoughts?

    I’ve always assumed that the 1000 year reign of the saints was synonymous/simultaneous with the binding of Satan.

    I must emphasize that I’m only looking into this as a possibility – I’m by no means sold on it. But like you, I think there’s merit to it.

    I also assumed the “first” resurrection referred to Christ leading the captives free when he ascended (Eph 4:8) as well as assuming the saints who died between Ad33 – 67 automatically went to Heaven (Rev 6:9).

    I realize that as the more-or-less standard FP position, but the text does seem to imply Christians as the targets of the First Resurrection by specifically describing them as those who were martyred “because of their testimony for Jesus”, and I think it would be a clear act of obfuscation if the writer meant, as some have suggested, that the pre-Christian Jewish martyrs were really testifying to Jesus in the future. Then again, it could be that the phrase “and because of the word of God” was meant to widen the scope to the OT saints. But then the next sentence again sounds like people in the years close to the siege of Jerusalem, because who else would have had a chance to receive the mark of the beast? Of course the OT saints didn’t worship the image or receive the mark of the beast!

    But there is absolutely a line of evidence in favor of your view as well. This will make me have to rethink my idea of the resurrection (the timing, the location of the deceased saints 33-67ad, etc…).

    Let me know what you find 😉

    I have a friend that argues that true salvation was not realized until the Parousia. I tend to agree. I can forward you a link to his arguments if you are interested.

    I do tend to agree myself, but I’d love to see the link.

    As for as the spiritual body Paul refers to (1Cor 15:44), I think this is tied to the body of Christ.

    Some earlier posts of mine on this topic lean toward the corporate view as well, but it’s not without problems. For one, Paul in Romans 8.11 implies a replacement of mortal bodies (the plural is used). Of course, one might chalk this up to a more logistical explanation of the fate of the individual after death and not a reference to the more figurative and abstract resurrection of the Body.

    Sigh…lots to think about.

  • Patrick Stone

    1) As far as the date of AD33, Jack Finegan give’s an excellent analysis in his book “Hanbook of Biblical Chronology.” Ultimately he concludes that there are only two dates that fit the criteria given by the New Testament, AD33 and AD3o. Again Preterists favor 33, while futurists favor 30.

    2) I consider the binding of Satan as his inability to prevent the spread of the gospel throughout the nations. The evidence of this is (a) Reve 20:3 – he was bound so he could not deceive the nations… the gospel, of course, is perfect truth. (b) Luke 10, verse 1 – Christ sends out 70 to the various surrounding cities, verse 17, the 70 tell Christ even the demons are subject to them, verse 18 – Christ sees Satan fall from Heaven as lighnting, verse 19 – Christ gives power over serpents (Satan – Rev 12:9) and power over the enemy. [notice that there is still demonic activity and satan is active, but the witnesses have authority and power over them…ie, they are bound] (c) Matt 24:14, Rev 14:6, Acts 1:8, Rom 11:25, … the gospel must be spread to all nations before the end (d) as far as the end of the period, as you have said there is a relationship between Rev 6 and 20…Satan is bound and then loosed for a little season in Rev 20. in Rev 6, the matyrs are told to wait a little season for their brethern to be killed. The two “little seasons” are the same, in fact it is the loosing of the Satan that accelerates the death of their brethern. The little season Satan is loosed is also the same as 42 months of Reve 13:4,5 which the dragon and beast is active. The 42 months is the period of great tribulation, the Roman war of 67-70AD. Therefore….Satan bound from 33-67 AD.

    3) I think that John used the phrase “testimony of Jesus” and the “word of God” deliberately to include Old Testament saints and Christians (see also Rev 12:17). One of the main focus of the book of Revelation is the transition from Old to New Covenant and that both were active simulataneously from 33-70AD until the Old passed away with the Temple and Priests.

    4) I think you hit the nail on the head with the “mark of the beast” comment. Those who died before the fifth seal are those slain for the “word of God and the testimony which they held.” The 1000 year reign includes almost the same phrase but includes those “who had not worshiped the beast…or received his mark.” Technically the beast [Rome & its emporers] existed before the beginning of the Roman-Jewish war, but this seems to be talking about the people who died after the war began (when the beast attacked Israel). That is, it is referring to the “fellow-servants” of the martyrs who have already died (Rev 6:11).

    (5) you keep on mention “siege of Jerusalem” Are you referring to the beginning of the Jewish-Roman war in 66 AD when Gallus (?) unsuccessfully attacked Jerusalem. Or to 70 AD when Titus did? After 66AD, Vespasian came in spring of 67 AD and began attacking the surrounding cities of Israel. But it was only in 70AD, after Vespasian was emporer that his son Titus lead Roman armies in a siege against Jerusalem.

    6) You are actually friends with him on Facebook.. Vincent Krivda.
    http://campus.digication.com/touchstoneministries/Body_dead_to_Sin_Part_2

    7) Rom 8:11 – yeah, the jury is still out. I still ultimatley see death as separation from God, so even the pre-parosia saints were to some degree still “dead” until Christ’s return in 70AD. Until the Old Covenanant and Temple was destroyed and the New Covenant was fully established. Until there was a new Heaven where there was no temple (no separation from God) and Heaven was modeled after Eden. It was in Eden that Adam walked freely with God. It was Adam who was originally separated from God due to sin (and “died”). It was Adam who God originally breathed life into. So in Rom 8:11, God will quicken our mortal bodies is the reverse of what happened to Adam. So that we are no longer separated from God. So that we can walk freely with him through Jesus Christ. Sorry…just thinking out loud. My point is that it is corporate [life through Christ’s body, the Church] but also individual [a new living soul breathed into our mortal bodies…the reverse of Adam]. The problem of this approach is that the pre-parousia saints were “born again” ?.? like you said…lots to think about.

  • Patrick Stone

    1) As far as the date of AD33, Jack Finegan give’s an excellent analysis in his book “Hanbook of Biblical Chronology.” Ultimately he concludes that there are only two dates that fit the criteria given by the New Testament, AD33 and AD3o. Again Preterists favor 33, while futurists favor 30.

    2) I consider the binding of Satan as his inability to prevent the spread of the gospel throughout the nations. The evidence of this is (a) Reve 20:3 – he was bound so he could not deceive the nations… the gospel, of course, is perfect truth. (b) Luke 10, verse 1 – Christ sends out 70 to the various surrounding cities, verse 17, the 70 tell Christ even the demons are subject to them, verse 18 – Christ sees Satan fall from Heaven as lighnting, verse 19 – Christ gives power over serpents (Satan – Rev 12:9) and power over the enemy. [notice that there is still demonic activity and satan is active, but the witnesses have authority and power over them…ie, they are bound] (c) Matt 24:14, Rev 14:6, Acts 1:8, Rom 11:25, … the gospel must be spread to all nations before the end (d) as far as the end of the period, as you have said there is a relationship between Rev 6 and 20…Satan is bound and then loosed for a little season in Rev 20. in Rev 6, the matyrs are told to wait a little season for their brethern to be killed. The two “little seasons” are the same, in fact it is the loosing of the Satan that accelerates the death of their brethern. The little season Satan is loosed is also the same as 42 months of Reve 13:4,5 which the dragon and beast is active. The 42 months is the period of great tribulation, the Roman war of 67-70AD. Therefore….Satan bound from 33-67 AD.

    3) I think that John used the phrase “testimony of Jesus” and the “word of God” deliberately to include Old Testament saints and Christians (see also Rev 12:17). One of the main focus of the book of Revelation is the transition from Old to New Covenant and that both were active simulataneously from 33-70AD until the Old passed away with the Temple and Priests.

    4) I think you hit the nail on the head with the “mark of the beast” comment. Those who died before the fifth seal are those slain for the “word of God and the testimony which they held.” The 1000 year reign includes almost the same phrase but includes those “who had not worshiped the beast…or received his mark.” Technically the beast [Rome & its emporers] existed before the beginning of the Roman-Jewish war, but this seems to be talking about the people who died after the war began (when the beast attacked Israel). That is, it is referring to the “fellow-servants” of the martyrs who have already died (Rev 6:11).

    (5) you keep on mention “siege of Jerusalem” Are you referring to the beginning of the Jewish-Roman war in 66 AD when Gallus (?) unsuccessfully attacked Jerusalem. Or to 70 AD when Titus did? After 66AD, Vespasian came in spring of 67 AD and began attacking the surrounding cities of Israel. But it was only in 70AD, after Vespasian was emporer that his son Titus lead Roman armies in a siege against Jerusalem.

    6) You are actually friends with him on Facebook.. Vincent Krivda.
    http://campus.digication.com/touchstoneministries/Body_dead_to_Sin_Part_2

    7) Rom 8:11 – yeah, the jury is still out. I still ultimatley see death as separation from God, so even the pre-parosia saints were to some degree still “dead” until Christ’s return in 70AD. Until the Old Covenanant and Temple was destroyed and the New Covenant was fully established. Until there was a new Heaven where there was no temple (no separation from God) and Heaven was modeled after Eden. It was in Eden that Adam walked freely with God. It was Adam who was originally separated from God due to sin (and “died”). It was Adam who God originally breathed life into. So in Rom 8:11, God will quicken our mortal bodies is the reverse of what happened to Adam. So that we are no longer separated from God. So that we can walk freely with him through Jesus Christ. Sorry…just thinking out loud. My point is that it is corporate [life through Christ’s body, the Church] but also individual [a new living soul breathed into our mortal bodies…the reverse of Adam]. The problem of this approach is that the pre-parousia saints were “born again” ?.? like you said…lots to think about.

  • Patrick Stone

    We’ll I’ll propose it even though I think I am wrong (I can think of scriptures opposing my proposal). What if the difference between pre-parousia and post-parousia saints were that they were not born again until 70AD? This is similar to the idea of salvation in 70 AD. That is, they were given the promise of a new spirit before 70AD, and were given a new spirit in 70AD? The spirit they received before 70AD was the Holy Spirit, but after 70AD it was a spirit inside their own bodies. In opposition to Adam who spiritually died.

  • Patrick Stone

    We’ll I’ll propose it even though I think I am wrong (I can think of scriptures opposing my proposal). What if the difference between pre-parousia and post-parousia saints were that they were not born again until 70AD? This is similar to the idea of salvation in 70 AD. That is, they were given the promise of a new spirit before 70AD, and were given a new spirit in 70AD? The spirit they received before 70AD was the Holy Spirit, but after 70AD it was a spirit inside their own bodies. In opposition to Adam who spiritually died.

  • Re: 1) Thanks for the info.

    Re: 2) Excellent analysis. I would like to know how you interpret the loosing of Satan – if binding him was intended to keep him from thwarting the gospel effort among the Gentiles, then loosing him would have to mean that he was allowed to thwart the gospel effort. I suppose we can imagine that this happened, but what did it look like? No Gentile converts? Few Gentile converts? Hmmm…

    Re: 5) and the “siege”, I was being exceedingly sloppy with my terminology. Obviously the siege of Jerusalem did not occur until 70. Thanks for whipping me into accuracy. 😉

    Re: 6) Thanks. I’ve read some of Vincent’s stuff before; he’s got some really good stuff.

    Re: 7) This is something I struggle with occasionally. I find myself wondering if there’s any detectable sense in which I’m “better off” than Paul was. He was looking for something in the future that was to change everything. My best guess (with no small amount of Scriptural support) is that it was 1) post-mortem existence and 2) the vindication of Christians as the true line of faith over the Jewish system that had been persecuting them. But I’m all ears (and eyes) for better understanding.

  • Re: 1) Thanks for the info.

    Re: 2) Excellent analysis. I would like to know how you interpret the loosing of Satan – if binding him was intended to keep him from thwarting the gospel effort among the Gentiles, then loosing him would have to mean that he was allowed to thwart the gospel effort. I suppose we can imagine that this happened, but what did it look like? No Gentile converts? Few Gentile converts? Hmmm…

    Re: 5) and the “siege”, I was being exceedingly sloppy with my terminology. Obviously the siege of Jerusalem did not occur until 70. Thanks for whipping me into accuracy. 😉

    Re: 6) Thanks. I’ve read some of Vincent’s stuff before; he’s got some really good stuff.

    Re: 7) This is something I struggle with occasionally. I find myself wondering if there’s any detectable sense in which I’m “better off” than Paul was. He was looking for something in the future that was to change everything. My best guess (with no small amount of Scriptural support) is that it was 1) post-mortem existence and 2) the vindication of Christians as the true line of faith over the Jewish system that had been persecuting them. But I’m all ears (and eyes) for better understanding.

  • Intresting discussion.

    I agree much with Patricks post 30 point 2.

    Someone said:
    “We cannot assume that Satan was bound during the 40 years, because Peter referred to Satan as a roaring lion searching for someone to devour. Paul also mentions that Satan would soon be crushed under His (Christ) feet. Therefore, the idea that the Millennium is prior to Jerusalem’s destruction would not work.”
    1Pe 5:8 Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:
    This is one example including the antichrists and decievers who took many into apostasy during:
    Rev 20:7 And when the thousand years are expired, Satan shall be loosed out of his prison,
    Rev 20:8 And shall go out to deceive the nations which are in the four quarters of the earth, Gog and Magog, to gather them together to battle: the number of whom is as the sand of the sea.
    Rev 20:9 And they went up on the breadth of the earth, and compassed the camp of the saints about, and the beloved city: and fire came down from God out of heaven, and devoured them.

    Anyway, there are some key clues from the gospels and epistles that have led me to believe the kingdom was inaugurated at the resurrection of Christ and even becoming appointed sometime before Christ’s death during His earthly ministry and works. I have a short introductory video with my Scriptural appeals:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MWyUTqIwLsk

    On the Romans reference, Paul also said
    1Co 15:25 For he must reign, till he hath put all enemies under his feet.
    1Co 15:26 The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death.
    1Co 15:27 For he hath put all things under his feet. But when he saith all things are put under him, it is manifest that he is excepted, which did put all things under him.
    The reign was absolute but
    Heb 2:8 Thou hast put all things in subjection under his feet. For in that he put all in subjection under him, he left nothing that is not put under him. But now we see not yet all things put under him.

    Grace be to you,
    PFC Vincent M. Krivda, Jr.

  • Intresting discussion.

    I agree much with Patricks post 30 point 2.

    Someone said:
    “We cannot assume that Satan was bound during the 40 years, because Peter referred to Satan as a roaring lion searching for someone to devour. Paul also mentions that Satan would soon be crushed under His (Christ) feet. Therefore, the idea that the Millennium is prior to Jerusalem’s destruction would not work.”
    1Pe 5:8 Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:
    This is one example including the antichrists and decievers who took many into apostasy during:
    Rev 20:7 And when the thousand years are expired, Satan shall be loosed out of his prison,
    Rev 20:8 And shall go out to deceive the nations which are in the four quarters of the earth, Gog and Magog, to gather them together to battle: the number of whom is as the sand of the sea.
    Rev 20:9 And they went up on the breadth of the earth, and compassed the camp of the saints about, and the beloved city: and fire came down from God out of heaven, and devoured them.

    Anyway, there are some key clues from the gospels and epistles that have led me to believe the kingdom was inaugurated at the resurrection of Christ and even becoming appointed sometime before Christ’s death during His earthly ministry and works. I have a short introductory video with my Scriptural appeals:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MWyUTqIwLsk

    On the Romans reference, Paul also said
    1Co 15:25 For he must reign, till he hath put all enemies under his feet.
    1Co 15:26 The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death.
    1Co 15:27 For he hath put all things under his feet. But when he saith all things are put under him, it is manifest that he is excepted, which did put all things under him.
    The reign was absolute but
    Heb 2:8 Thou hast put all things in subjection under his feet. For in that he put all in subjection under him, he left nothing that is not put under him. But now we see not yet all things put under him.

    Grace be to you,
    PFC Vincent M. Krivda, Jr.

  • Thanks for weighing in, Vincent.

    I can’t imagine but that Christ’s ascension was seen as the commencement of Christ’s millennial reign.

    Acts 1 gives us some irrefutable clues. An important indication of the significance of the Ascension as a sign of Christ’s reign is the actual language of Acts 1.9, which states “he was lifted up”, using the present passive participle of epairo, which BAGD lists as meaning “exalted”. Once such instance of this meaning is seen in the LXX of Isaiah 6.1, which says, “…I saw the Lord sitting on His throne high and lifted up (with the present passive participle of epairo!), and the place was filled with His glory” (my translation; the LXX makes no mention of the “train of his robe”).

    The importance of this parallel can hardly be understated. Christ’s disappearance into “the clouds” was a picture of what was happening in the spiritual realm, i.e. the fulfillment of Daniel 7.13-14:

    …there before me was one like a son of man, coming with the clouds of heaven. He approached the Ancient of Days and was led into his presence. He was given authority, glory and sovereign power; all peoples, nations and men of every language worshiped him. His dominion is an everlasting dominion that will not pass away, and his kingdom is one that will never be destroyed.

    Of course this leads to the idea that although he handed over the Kingdom to the Father (1 Co 15.28), Jesus still reigns forever. One cannot escape the conclusion that Rev 20’s mention of a thousand-year period was a special compartmentalization of salvation history rather than a limitation put on the reign of Christ. So for Acts 1 to make such a big show of Christ entering the throne room as the exalted victor, we have to recognize that it, too, was a recognition of something other than his general reign as God (which, after all, extended into eternity past).

    It just occurred to me that the idea Patrick conjectured about – that the millennium that commenced with the binding of Satan c. AD33 (I would say the Ascension) does not coincide with the proposed millennial reign of the saints beginning c. AD66 – is substantially the same as the theory put forth by Kurt Simmons (see his site here). This seems somewhat plausible; I never understood it or took it seriously when I heard Simmons’s “bimillennial” view a few years ago, yet it seems to have now been independently constructed all over again, this time in a way that makes sense to me.

    Is it possible? Yes. Probable? Not ready to say that yet. “Interesting” is the best word I can lay on it right now.

  • Thanks for weighing in, Vincent.

    I can’t imagine but that Christ’s ascension was seen as the commencement of Christ’s millennial reign.

    Acts 1 gives us some irrefutable clues. An important indication of the significance of the Ascension as a sign of Christ’s reign is the actual language of Acts 1.9, which states “he was lifted up”, using the present passive participle of epairo, which BAGD lists as meaning “exalted”. Once such instance of this meaning is seen in the LXX of Isaiah 6.1, which says, “…I saw the Lord sitting on His throne high and lifted up (with the present passive participle of epairo!), and the place was filled with His glory” (my translation; the LXX makes no mention of the “train of his robe”).

    The importance of this parallel can hardly be understated. Christ’s disappearance into “the clouds” was a picture of what was happening in the spiritual realm, i.e. the fulfillment of Daniel 7.13-14:

    …there before me was one like a son of man, coming with the clouds of heaven. He approached the Ancient of Days and was led into his presence. He was given authority, glory and sovereign power; all peoples, nations and men of every language worshiped him. His dominion is an everlasting dominion that will not pass away, and his kingdom is one that will never be destroyed.

    Of course this leads to the idea that although he handed over the Kingdom to the Father (1 Co 15.28), Jesus still reigns forever. One cannot escape the conclusion that Rev 20’s mention of a thousand-year period was a special compartmentalization of salvation history rather than a limitation put on the reign of Christ. So for Acts 1 to make such a big show of Christ entering the throne room as the exalted victor, we have to recognize that it, too, was a recognition of something other than his general reign as God (which, after all, extended into eternity past).

    It just occurred to me that the idea Patrick conjectured about – that the millennium that commenced with the binding of Satan c. AD33 (I would say the Ascension) does not coincide with the proposed millennial reign of the saints beginning c. AD66 – is substantially the same as the theory put forth by Kurt Simmons (see his site here). This seems somewhat plausible; I never understood it or took it seriously when I heard Simmons’s “bimillennial” view a few years ago, yet it seems to have now been independently constructed all over again, this time in a way that makes sense to me.

    Is it possible? Yes. Probable? Not ready to say that yet. “Interesting” is the best word I can lay on it right now.

  • “I can’t imagine but that Christ’s ascension was seen as the commencement of Christ’s millennial reign.”

    I actually agree, but posit that the reign began before the ascension.
    I make my appeals for this in the video I posted above.

    I also deal with some of the things you brought up in another video rsponse:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=599J4iyjUnY

    Grace be to you.

  • “I can’t imagine but that Christ’s ascension was seen as the commencement of Christ’s millennial reign.”

    I actually agree, but posit that the reign began before the ascension.
    I make my appeals for this in the video I posted above.

    I also deal with some of the things you brought up in another video rsponse:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=599J4iyjUnY

    Grace be to you.

  • Hi, Vincent! Great work on those videos. I particularly love the argument (which I had never encountered) that Paul’s claim to have seen the risen Christ is significant because Christ was invisible to those around him. The importance of Paul seeing Christ risen was in no way claimed to be based strictly on the physicality of Christ’s body. To Paul and his audience, Jesus is risen because he lives after he died: post-mortem existence was the crucial revelation to them, and any sighting of Jesus was enough to confirm Christ’s resurrection and commend Paul’s apostolic authority.

    I actually agree, but posit that the reign began before the ascension.

    The kingdom of God was “near” and “at hand” all through Christ’s first advent. The signs of the kingdom of God were demonstrated during this time, and Jesus’ miracles made manifest the reality of God’s eternal reign. The Son of Man in Daniel 7 entered the presence of the Ancient of Days and received the Kingdom based upon his completed and meritorious work on earth. Passages such as John 12.31 are remarkably clear imminency passages (cf. English present tenses: “I am getting married next month”) rather than full declarations of present reality. Christ’s millennial reign did not begin until the Ascension; through his participation in the eternal Kingdom of heaven, he brought a foretaste of his own Kingdom that would soon be coming to earth.

    Like the humble son of Jesse, the Son of David reigned victorious for forty years, but whereas David died and passed the kingdom to his son, the Son of David’s reign commenced after his humble death (Phil 2.8-11) and culminated in his presenting the Kingdom back to his Father; and yet his reign continues forever.

    Interesting discussion!

  • Hi, Vincent! Great work on those videos. I particularly love the argument (which I had never encountered) that Paul’s claim to have seen the risen Christ is significant because Christ was invisible to those around him. The importance of Paul seeing Christ risen was in no way claimed to be based strictly on the physicality of Christ’s body. To Paul and his audience, Jesus is risen because he lives after he died: post-mortem existence was the crucial revelation to them, and any sighting of Jesus was enough to confirm Christ’s resurrection and commend Paul’s apostolic authority.

    I actually agree, but posit that the reign began before the ascension.

    The kingdom of God was “near” and “at hand” all through Christ’s first advent. The signs of the kingdom of God were demonstrated during this time, and Jesus’ miracles made manifest the reality of God’s eternal reign. The Son of Man in Daniel 7 entered the presence of the Ancient of Days and received the Kingdom based upon his completed and meritorious work on earth. Passages such as John 12.31 are remarkably clear imminency passages (cf. English present tenses: “I am getting married next month”) rather than full declarations of present reality. Christ’s millennial reign did not begin until the Ascension; through his participation in the eternal Kingdom of heaven, he brought a foretaste of his own Kingdom that would soon be coming to earth.

    Like the humble son of Jesse, the Son of David reigned victorious for forty years, but whereas David died and passed the kingdom to his son, the Son of David’s reign commenced after his humble death (Phil 2.8-11) and culminated in his presenting the Kingdom back to his Father; and yet his reign continues forever.

    Interesting discussion!

  • Patrick Stone

    Steve said “I can’t imagine but that Christ’s ascension was seen as the commencement of Christ’s millennial reign.”

    Vincent said “I actually agree, but posit that the reign began before the ascension.”

    I want to make a distinction here. I agree that Christ’s reign began at his ascension (Hebr 10:12, Acts 7:56) as his enemies were being put under him (Hebr 10:13 – I think the most quoted verse in the NT out of the OT). I think we would all agree that his reign continues forever (Ps 146:10)

    I think we all also agree as to the binding of Satan as well…circa the death and resurrection of Christ. As to him being released, I say circa 67 AD, the beginning of the Roman Jewish war.

    The questions is when (a) the first resurrection occured & along with it the (b) the beginning of the 1000 year reign of the matyrs with Christ. The distinction I wanted to make earlier is that the reign of the saints with Christ is not necessarily the same as the reign of Christ. So even though Christ began to reign at the ascension and had made his enemies his foostool by 70AD, that does not necessarily mean that either coincides with Millennial reign of the saints.

    There is certainly evidence to suggest (1) that the first resurrection is synomous with spiritual regeneration, ie: being born again at conversion and (2) that the saints were reigning with Christ before 67 AD (Eph 2:5,6; although sitting is not necessarily reigning unless it is sitting on a throne – Eph 1:20; Rev 1:5 “hath made us kings and priests” ie: present tense to John).

    The question is ‘is this what John intended by this vision?’ Afterall he seems to be applying the Millennial reign to martyrs only, and the matyrs are not seen in the visions until the fifth seal. They are told to wait a “little season” for their brethern to be killed. The vision of the Millennial reign of the saints occur immediately after it says that Satan must be loosed a “little season,” which could include the persecution of the remaining marytrs. The vision of the Millennnial reign also includes the addition of “those who worshipped not the beast of his image…” In other words, it seems the brethern who are to be killed are the same as those who refused to worship the beast.

    I have been working on an article which is now about 5 pages long on my evidence for the Millennial reign beginning at the beginning of the Tribulation. Once I’m done I’ll post it and place the link. I’m not completely sold on it, but I’m still finding a lot of evidence supporting the view.

    Also, I’m familiar with Kurt’s Bi-Mill. I think he has an exceptionally LONG period for the Millennial reign (doesn’t he begin with the death of Abel as the first Martyr?). This is opposed our new little theory that it is even SHORTER than 40 years (actually 3.5).

    I just got to figure out how to make videos so I can be famous like Vincent 😉
    (I’ve enjoyed everyone I watched so far… keep em coming!)

    More soon…

  • Patrick Stone

    Steve said “I can’t imagine but that Christ’s ascension was seen as the commencement of Christ’s millennial reign.”

    Vincent said “I actually agree, but posit that the reign began before the ascension.”

    I want to make a distinction here. I agree that Christ’s reign began at his ascension (Hebr 10:12, Acts 7:56) as his enemies were being put under him (Hebr 10:13 – I think the most quoted verse in the NT out of the OT). I think we would all agree that his reign continues forever (Ps 146:10)

    I think we all also agree as to the binding of Satan as well…circa the death and resurrection of Christ. As to him being released, I say circa 67 AD, the beginning of the Roman Jewish war.

    The questions is when (a) the first resurrection occured & along with it the (b) the beginning of the 1000 year reign of the matyrs with Christ. The distinction I wanted to make earlier is that the reign of the saints with Christ is not necessarily the same as the reign of Christ. So even though Christ began to reign at the ascension and had made his enemies his foostool by 70AD, that does not necessarily mean that either coincides with Millennial reign of the saints.

    There is certainly evidence to suggest (1) that the first resurrection is synomous with spiritual regeneration, ie: being born again at conversion and (2) that the saints were reigning with Christ before 67 AD (Eph 2:5,6; although sitting is not necessarily reigning unless it is sitting on a throne – Eph 1:20; Rev 1:5 “hath made us kings and priests” ie: present tense to John).

    The question is ‘is this what John intended by this vision?’ Afterall he seems to be applying the Millennial reign to martyrs only, and the matyrs are not seen in the visions until the fifth seal. They are told to wait a “little season” for their brethern to be killed. The vision of the Millennial reign of the saints occur immediately after it says that Satan must be loosed a “little season,” which could include the persecution of the remaining marytrs. The vision of the Millennnial reign also includes the addition of “those who worshipped not the beast of his image…” In other words, it seems the brethern who are to be killed are the same as those who refused to worship the beast.

    I have been working on an article which is now about 5 pages long on my evidence for the Millennial reign beginning at the beginning of the Tribulation. Once I’m done I’ll post it and place the link. I’m not completely sold on it, but I’m still finding a lot of evidence supporting the view.

    Also, I’m familiar with Kurt’s Bi-Mill. I think he has an exceptionally LONG period for the Millennial reign (doesn’t he begin with the death of Abel as the first Martyr?). This is opposed our new little theory that it is even SHORTER than 40 years (actually 3.5).

    I just got to figure out how to make videos so I can be famous like Vincent 😉
    (I’ve enjoyed everyone I watched so far… keep em coming!)

    More soon…

  • Patrick Stone

    Oh, as a side note…the idea that the ‘a’ resurrection occurs at the beginning of the tribulation is not new. The mid-trib futurist interpretation says that there is a resurrection of the dead and rapture of the saints at the beginning of the tribulation. Of course, the Millennium to them occurs after the second coming, which means the mid-trib resurrection is seperate from the first resurrection of the millennium. I don’t understand it either 😉

  • Patrick Stone

    Oh, as a side note…the idea that the ‘a’ resurrection occurs at the beginning of the tribulation is not new. The mid-trib futurist interpretation says that there is a resurrection of the dead and rapture of the saints at the beginning of the tribulation. Of course, the Millennium to them occurs after the second coming, which means the mid-trib resurrection is seperate from the first resurrection of the millennium. I don’t understand it either 😉

  • Patrick Stone

    Steve said
    “He was looking for something in the future that was to change everything. My best guess (with no small amount of Scriptural support) is that it was 1) post-mortem existence ”

    Can you elaborate? What scriptural support are you referring?

    I’m almost done with my analysis of the “first resurrection” and the Millennium. Currently 16 pages and counting. I am now coming to a different conclusion regarding another issue we discussed, namely what was the difference between the pre & post AD saints were (possibly tied to what you said above). Hopefully done this week.

  • Patrick Stone

    Steve said
    “He was looking for something in the future that was to change everything. My best guess (with no small amount of Scriptural support) is that it was 1) post-mortem existence ”

    Can you elaborate? What scriptural support are you referring?

    I’m almost done with my analysis of the “first resurrection” and the Millennium. Currently 16 pages and counting. I am now coming to a different conclusion regarding another issue we discussed, namely what was the difference between the pre & post AD saints were (possibly tied to what you said above). Hopefully done this week.

  • What I was referring to was the abolition of Sheol at the end of the millennium. Here I’m following the general FP reading of Sheol/Hades as roughly equivalent to “soul sleep”, which was something even the OT saints dreaded. The Resurrection of the Dead, to me, has always been about the emptying of Sheol, the place of the dead, which is what led to the judgment at that time. A lot of non-FPs wonder how the definitive Judgment Day could have happened in our past; to me it’s only natural that God took care of the millions of dead who died before then in a “batch” of sorts, and because the “holding grounds” were thrown into the Lake of Fire, everyone since then has been judged on an individual basis.

    Of course, this understanding is denied as an explanation for the difference for Paul by anyone who holds to the first resurrection being something other than post-mortem. In other words, for them, Paul had already been “resurrected”. I use quotation marks intentionally, because this seems to be a much different view of resurrection than even Paul seemed to have had (cf. 2 Cor 4.7-14, 5.1ff). But I’m still learning.

    Anyway, I think another big thing that Paul was looking forward to was the vindication of the true children of Abraham and the relief from the oppression of the children of Abraham after the flesh; this was what Paul called the manifestation of the sons of God. At that time, those who persecuted those with faith in God through Christ would have all vestiges of God’s seal of approval removed. Moreover, the Jewish believer vs. Gentile believer problems that plagued the early church and predominated the better part of Paul’s epistles would be settled definitively. Since then, anyone arguing for the necessity of any aspect of the Jewish cultus has been left without some of the most important aspects of the Jewish cultus, namely 1) purity of ethnicity, especially in regard to the dissolution of the priestly class, a result of the Diaspora of AD 70, and 2) the rebuilt temple of God prophesied by the OT prophets that was destroyed by Titus.

    I look forward to reading your paper!

  • What I was referring to was the abolition of Sheol at the end of the millennium. Here I’m following the general FP reading of Sheol/Hades as roughly equivalent to “soul sleep”, which was something even the OT saints dreaded. The Resurrection of the Dead, to me, has always been about the emptying of Sheol, the place of the dead, which is what led to the judgment at that time. A lot of non-FPs wonder how the definitive Judgment Day could have happened in our past; to me it’s only natural that God took care of the millions of dead who died before then in a “batch” of sorts, and because the “holding grounds” were thrown into the Lake of Fire, everyone since then has been judged on an individual basis.

    Of course, this understanding is denied as an explanation for the difference for Paul by anyone who holds to the first resurrection being something other than post-mortem. In other words, for them, Paul had already been “resurrected”. I use quotation marks intentionally, because this seems to be a much different view of resurrection than even Paul seemed to have had (cf. 2 Cor 4.7-14, 5.1ff). But I’m still learning.

    Anyway, I think another big thing that Paul was looking forward to was the vindication of the true children of Abraham and the relief from the oppression of the children of Abraham after the flesh; this was what Paul called the manifestation of the sons of God. At that time, those who persecuted those with faith in God through Christ would have all vestiges of God’s seal of approval removed. Moreover, the Jewish believer vs. Gentile believer problems that plagued the early church and predominated the better part of Paul’s epistles would be settled definitively. Since then, anyone arguing for the necessity of any aspect of the Jewish cultus has been left without some of the most important aspects of the Jewish cultus, namely 1) purity of ethnicity, especially in regard to the dissolution of the priestly class, a result of the Diaspora of AD 70, and 2) the rebuilt temple of God prophesied by the OT prophets that was destroyed by Titus.

    I look forward to reading your paper!

  • Doug Moody

    Steve,

    That the “Jewish” cultus as you called it is dead is manifest. But understanding why it MUST be dead is even more important.
    There is an overt claim by some evangelicals today that if we don’t pray that God will bless Jerusalem (pray for the peace of Jerusalem), then we aren’t in God’s will about the Jews.
    One particular group is called “Friends of Israel”. Their whole focus is about trying to bring about Christ’s second coming by getting Israel to acknowledge Jesus as the Messiah. They contend that until the Jews have been converted, then God isn’t really going to come. Somehow, they maintain that there is some worth in the kind of worship laid out in the old testament, and that its OK to mix those OT practices with Christianity.
    This is a dangerous assertion, mostly because as Jesus said “I have come to FULFILL the law” It is almost like an insult in God’s face because what the law could not provide, Christ did in His death and resurrection. Therefore, there is no further need of any “add-ons” to make it more perfect. Judaizers would have you believe that it IS OK to mix the two.
    Yet, it is very clear that the old covenant is GONE. Not just GONE, but totally removed and is to be practiced or remembered no more. The ony function it serves now is to show us how we got here!
    All those things you mentioned (purity, rebuilt temple) are physical things that theoretically could be returned by, for example, getting a red heifer and finding “pure” descendants of the priestly class to officiate at the temple. Believe it or not, there are some who are trying to do precisely that so that they can hurry Jesus on His way! Incredible!
    Christians ought to be thinking seriously whenever anyone who advocates for Israel or the Jews tries to ascribe some righteousness to the law. Such people do not really understand that there is NO practice or ritual which will put you in good standing with God – even Jewish ones; or should I say ESPECIALLY Jewish ones!?

  • Doug Moody

    Steve,

    That the “Jewish” cultus as you called it is dead is manifest. But understanding why it MUST be dead is even more important.
    There is an overt claim by some evangelicals today that if we don’t pray that God will bless Jerusalem (pray for the peace of Jerusalem), then we aren’t in God’s will about the Jews.
    One particular group is called “Friends of Israel”. Their whole focus is about trying to bring about Christ’s second coming by getting Israel to acknowledge Jesus as the Messiah. They contend that until the Jews have been converted, then God isn’t really going to come. Somehow, they maintain that there is some worth in the kind of worship laid out in the old testament, and that its OK to mix those OT practices with Christianity.
    This is a dangerous assertion, mostly because as Jesus said “I have come to FULFILL the law” It is almost like an insult in God’s face because what the law could not provide, Christ did in His death and resurrection. Therefore, there is no further need of any “add-ons” to make it more perfect. Judaizers would have you believe that it IS OK to mix the two.
    Yet, it is very clear that the old covenant is GONE. Not just GONE, but totally removed and is to be practiced or remembered no more. The ony function it serves now is to show us how we got here!
    All those things you mentioned (purity, rebuilt temple) are physical things that theoretically could be returned by, for example, getting a red heifer and finding “pure” descendants of the priestly class to officiate at the temple. Believe it or not, there are some who are trying to do precisely that so that they can hurry Jesus on His way! Incredible!
    Christians ought to be thinking seriously whenever anyone who advocates for Israel or the Jews tries to ascribe some righteousness to the law. Such people do not really understand that there is NO practice or ritual which will put you in good standing with God – even Jewish ones; or should I say ESPECIALLY Jewish ones!?

  • Patrick Stone

    Okay, for better or worse, I’m finally done. My ultimate conclusion is that the 1000 Year Millennium reign of the saints was in fact from 67-70AD. I also make an interesting conclusion regarding the resurrection of the dead and the rapture of the living saints as well (related to another earlier post – what’s the difference between pre- and post-Parousia saints.)

    Its long, tedious, boring, cumbersome, controversial…but afterall I’m an engineer 😉

    I divided into several sections, some of which you could skip:
    1) The chronology of Revelation
    2) Daniel’s 70 Weeks
    3) The Millennial Reign & The First Resurrection
    4) Implications for the Nature of the Resurrection
    5) Further Conclusions & Conjecture

    #2 you can skip if you like, #4 is the “conclusions” section. #1 is how I have come to understand and interpret the order of the visions in Revelation (which I have to confess is different than anyone on the face of the planet).

    enjoy?

    http://preteristpost.blogspot.com/2008/10/timing-of-millennial-reign-of-saints.html

  • Patrick Stone

    Okay, for better or worse, I’m finally done. My ultimate conclusion is that the 1000 Year Millennium reign of the saints was in fact from 67-70AD. I also make an interesting conclusion regarding the resurrection of the dead and the rapture of the living saints as well (related to another earlier post – what’s the difference between pre- and post-Parousia saints.)

    Its long, tedious, boring, cumbersome, controversial…but afterall I’m an engineer 😉

    I divided into several sections, some of which you could skip:
    1) The chronology of Revelation
    2) Daniel’s 70 Weeks
    3) The Millennial Reign & The First Resurrection
    4) Implications for the Nature of the Resurrection
    5) Further Conclusions & Conjecture

    #2 you can skip if you like, #4 is the “conclusions” section. #1 is how I have come to understand and interpret the order of the visions in Revelation (which I have to confess is different than anyone on the face of the planet).

    enjoy?

    http://preteristpost.blogspot.com/2008/10/timing-of-millennial-reign-of-saints.html

  • Doug,
    Amen to your thoughts.

    It is almost like an insult in God’s face because what the law could not provide, Christ did in His death and resurrection.

    That’s exactly what it is, Doug.

    All those things you mentioned (purity, rebuilt temple) are physical things that theoretically could be returned by, for example, getting a red heifer and finding “pure” descendants of the priestly class to officiate at the temple. Believe it or not, there are some who are trying to do precisely that so that they can hurry Jesus on His way! Incredible!

    What’s incredible is that they think such things are possible. The Jewish race is no more, and is acknowledged to be well gone even by Jewish religious authorities (I’ll see if I can dig up the link), so how can there be pure descendants of Levites or any other tribe? And it’s outrageous that Christians would cheer on this blatant blasphemy: Jesus was the ultimate Red Heifer!

    Patrick,

    It’s going to take me a while to make it through this (I want to read the better part of it at least), but what I’ve read so far gives me strong hopes for it. For instance, I feel your hermeneutic for Revelation commends itself well. I’d like to hear others’ feedback on it, as well. Thanks for giving me the link!

  • Doug,
    Amen to your thoughts.

    It is almost like an insult in God’s face because what the law could not provide, Christ did in His death and resurrection.

    That’s exactly what it is, Doug.

    All those things you mentioned (purity, rebuilt temple) are physical things that theoretically could be returned by, for example, getting a red heifer and finding “pure” descendants of the priestly class to officiate at the temple. Believe it or not, there are some who are trying to do precisely that so that they can hurry Jesus on His way! Incredible!

    What’s incredible is that they think such things are possible. The Jewish race is no more, and is acknowledged to be well gone even by Jewish religious authorities (I’ll see if I can dig up the link), so how can there be pure descendants of Levites or any other tribe? And it’s outrageous that Christians would cheer on this blatant blasphemy: Jesus was the ultimate Red Heifer!

    Patrick,

    It’s going to take me a while to make it through this (I want to read the better part of it at least), but what I’ve read so far gives me strong hopes for it. For instance, I feel your hermeneutic for Revelation commends itself well. I’d like to hear others’ feedback on it, as well. Thanks for giving me the link!

  • patrick stone

    Hey Steve, thanks for the encouragement. Look forward to your opinions, even if they are critical…that’s the only way we can get any better right? The other articles aren’t posted, but I can email them to you if you will send me your email address (by facebook if you want to keep it private).

  • patrick stone

    Hey Steve, thanks for the encouragement. Look forward to your opinions, even if they are critical…that’s the only way we can get any better right? The other articles aren’t posted, but I can email them to you if you will send me your email address (by facebook if you want to keep it private).

  • Patrick Stone

    On a somewhat related note…here is an email to a friend of mine who is Idealist-Preterist. We have been debating back and forth over Full Preterism. One topic came up regarding the difference between post and pre parousia saints (which is mentioned above)…so I include my reply to one of his emails here. I’m not at all sure what the Full Preterist stance on this is, or if there is a consistent stance. See below…

    “Let’s continue with our debate about the holy of holies first. Now I will first admit that I agree that the veil was rent in c 30 AD at the death, resurrection, and accension of Christ. I have no qualms there. I will even admit that their is scriptural evidence in support of Christians being able to enter the holy of holies in heaven SPIRITUALLY after the 30 AD as well.

    But I remain firm that Revelation is clear that the post-30AD heavenly temple was a mirror of the tabernacle / temple with its inner court, holy place and holy of holies. And that the heavenly tabernacle changed profoundly post-Parousia (70 AD), becoming like the original Garden of Eden. I don’t think there is any question that this implies that the pre – 70 AD heaven was different from the post – 70AD heaven, and that the difference was related to there being SOME MANNER OF DIVISION / SEPARATION in the pre-70 AD Heaven. Even the book of Hebrews, from which this debate stems, argues that the symbolism of the Holy Place was separation from God.

    In addition there is 1 Cor 15
    1Cor 15:51 Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed,

    > 1Cor 15:52 In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.

    and

    1The 4:13 But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope.
    1The 4:14 For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him.
    1The 4:15 For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive [and] remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep.
    1The 4:16 For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first:
    1The 4:17 Then we which are alive [and] remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.

    Both of these indicate that Paul believed that there was some difference between pre-parousia and post-parousia living saints as well as deceased saints. (I would also argue, although this is a separate point, that he makes a distinction between deceased saints and being alive at the Parousia, so how can the Parousia be equated to being with Christ at death, unless I misinterpret how Idealist’s interpret this?).

    Now what we have here is an apparent conflict. John saw heaven as divided before the Parousia, while the author of Hebrews (and Paul as you have shown) saw it as open and accessible. Even if you are Idealist, you must admit that this conflict exists and must be resolved (I do not accept your analysis that my argument is a “nuanced take on a vague passage in an apocalyptic work.”) Now I postulate that the difference is related to what Paul stated would occur at the Parousia…the resurrection of the dead and the bodily transformation of the believers.

    My proposal is this…whereas the author of Hebrews (and Paul) saw access to Heaven as open to Christians, they were always referring to spiritual access. That is, their spirits could freely enter into the holy of holies (through the blood of Christ, in the Spirit, through the veil, etc…). John’s vision of heaven revealed that Heaven still maintained a degree of separation…but this was not referring to the spiritual access of believers. It was referring to the status of the dead, at the time. Heaven becoming ‘opened’ like the Garden of Eden, is equivalent to the resurrection (in fact occurs after the second resurrection of the dead). The marriage of the bride to the Lamb also is equivalent to the resurrection, since it entails the bride (deceased saints) being taken back to the bridal chamber (holy of holies) to become one with Christ (separation removed). The deceased saints can be shown to be in Paradise (whether in soul sleep or not I think is irrelevant) before the Parousia. Paul said they were “asleep,” but I think the point is they were somehow still separated from God.

    The livings saints “changed,” in that they would no longer go to the place of Paradise (where there was separation from God) but to Heaven, immediatley united with God and Christ.

    The only scripture I can think of contrary to this is

    2Cor 5:8 We are confident, [I say], and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord.

    But even this can be shown to be related to the second coming, two verses down:

    2Cor 5:9 Wherefore we labour, that, whether present or absent, we may be accepted of him. {labour: or, endeavour}
    2Cor 5:10 For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things [done] in [his] body, according to that he hath done, whether [it be] good or bad. “

  • Patrick Stone

    On a somewhat related note…here is an email to a friend of mine who is Idealist-Preterist. We have been debating back and forth over Full Preterism. One topic came up regarding the difference between post and pre parousia saints (which is mentioned above)…so I include my reply to one of his emails here. I’m not at all sure what the Full Preterist stance on this is, or if there is a consistent stance. See below…

    “Let’s continue with our debate about the holy of holies first. Now I will first admit that I agree that the veil was rent in c 30 AD at the death, resurrection, and accension of Christ. I have no qualms there. I will even admit that their is scriptural evidence in support of Christians being able to enter the holy of holies in heaven SPIRITUALLY after the 30 AD as well.

    But I remain firm that Revelation is clear that the post-30AD heavenly temple was a mirror of the tabernacle / temple with its inner court, holy place and holy of holies. And that the heavenly tabernacle changed profoundly post-Parousia (70 AD), becoming like the original Garden of Eden. I don’t think there is any question that this implies that the pre – 70 AD heaven was different from the post – 70AD heaven, and that the difference was related to there being SOME MANNER OF DIVISION / SEPARATION in the pre-70 AD Heaven. Even the book of Hebrews, from which this debate stems, argues that the symbolism of the Holy Place was separation from God.

    In addition there is 1 Cor 15
    1Cor 15:51 Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed,

    > 1Cor 15:52 In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.

    and

    1The 4:13 But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope.
    1The 4:14 For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him.
    1The 4:15 For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive [and] remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep.
    1The 4:16 For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first:
    1The 4:17 Then we which are alive [and] remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.

    Both of these indicate that Paul believed that there was some difference between pre-parousia and post-parousia living saints as well as deceased saints. (I would also argue, although this is a separate point, that he makes a distinction between deceased saints and being alive at the Parousia, so how can the Parousia be equated to being with Christ at death, unless I misinterpret how Idealist’s interpret this?).

    Now what we have here is an apparent conflict. John saw heaven as divided before the Parousia, while the author of Hebrews (and Paul as you have shown) saw it as open and accessible. Even if you are Idealist, you must admit that this conflict exists and must be resolved (I do not accept your analysis that my argument is a “nuanced take on a vague passage in an apocalyptic work.”) Now I postulate that the difference is related to what Paul stated would occur at the Parousia…the resurrection of the dead and the bodily transformation of the believers.

    My proposal is this…whereas the author of Hebrews (and Paul) saw access to Heaven as open to Christians, they were always referring to spiritual access. That is, their spirits could freely enter into the holy of holies (through the blood of Christ, in the Spirit, through the veil, etc…). John’s vision of heaven revealed that Heaven still maintained a degree of separation…but this was not referring to the spiritual access of believers. It was referring to the status of the dead, at the time. Heaven becoming ‘opened’ like the Garden of Eden, is equivalent to the resurrection (in fact occurs after the second resurrection of the dead). The marriage of the bride to the Lamb also is equivalent to the resurrection, since it entails the bride (deceased saints) being taken back to the bridal chamber (holy of holies) to become one with Christ (separation removed). The deceased saints can be shown to be in Paradise (whether in soul sleep or not I think is irrelevant) before the Parousia. Paul said they were “asleep,” but I think the point is they were somehow still separated from God.

    The livings saints “changed,” in that they would no longer go to the place of Paradise (where there was separation from God) but to Heaven, immediatley united with God and Christ.

    The only scripture I can think of contrary to this is

    2Cor 5:8 We are confident, [I say], and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord.

    But even this can be shown to be related to the second coming, two verses down:

    2Cor 5:9 Wherefore we labour, that, whether present or absent, we may be accepted of him. {labour: or, endeavour}
    2Cor 5:10 For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things [done] in [his] body, according to that he hath done, whether [it be] good or bad. “

  • Patrick Stone

    Todd Dennis is now an Idealist Preterist (www.preteristarchive.com). I was looking through his rebuttals of FP and found this

    http://www.preteristarchive.com/HyperPreteristArchive/blog1.php/2008/04/21/matthew-26-64-not-about-ad70

    as one of his major arguments.

    He is saying that Matthew 26:64 is mistranslated and the actual favors the idealistic. I am by no means a Greek scholar and was wondering if any (especially you Steven could comment).

    Also, could it possibly be translasted

    “Nevertheless I say unto you right now, you shall see the Son of Man..”
    as opposed to
    “Nevertheless I say unto you, From now you shall see the Son of Man…”

    Just wondering. Also, I’d like to go through and have a rebuttal for all his arguments…I really dislike his claim at the bottom of the page.

  • Patrick Stone

    Todd Dennis is now an Idealist Preterist (www.preteristarchive.com). I was looking through his rebuttals of FP and found this

    http://www.preteristarchive.com/HyperPreteristArchive/blog1.php/2008/04/21/matthew-26-64-not-about-ad70

    as one of his major arguments.

    He is saying that Matthew 26:64 is mistranslated and the actual favors the idealistic. I am by no means a Greek scholar and was wondering if any (especially you Steven could comment).

    Also, could it possibly be translasted

    “Nevertheless I say unto you right now, you shall see the Son of Man..”
    as opposed to
    “Nevertheless I say unto you, From now you shall see the Son of Man…”

    Just wondering. Also, I’d like to go through and have a rebuttal for all his arguments…I really dislike his claim at the bottom of the page.

  • You know Patrick, I’ve looked at preterist idealism (pretty seriously at one time); in fact, I’m in favor of hybridization wherever such a thing is warranted. I’ve looked at it enough to know that, despite their insistence, it does not effect how you live your Christian life. I’m not even going to stoop to the level of certain FP critics who might suggest a correlation between the mind-blowing, wholly unwarranted vitriol of pret idealists like Todd Dennis and his cohort Scott Thompson and their pret idealist doctrine; there are jerks on any side of the eschatology debate, and from what I can tell, Nate Dubois (a prominent pret idealist) is as charitable as anyone. I do wonder what’s up with the sarcastic, condescending tone of those other guys, however, and frankly it has soured me from looking at what they have to say. I mean, who wants to wade through the sewage to get to a rumored handful of change?

    I’d rather misunderstand some fine points of doctrine here and there and remain civil and respectful of my brothers and sisters in Christ. Teach me, please. Guide me. Heck, you can even warn me that I’m going to hell! But come on – stop impersonating the guy I’d meet there.

    Regarding the questions you raised, let me look at it. From at first blush, I can tell you there’s a major ambiguity in this passage both grammatically and lexically, and especially in how those two aspects interact. But for Pete’s sake – don’t take it to heart about the supposed “peer review” problem. Since when did they start submitting their material for peer review in a way different from FPs? At least there are actual books whereby people can make heads or tails of full preterism, whereas one always gets the impression that idealists are trying to hide what they really believe in vague, abstract universals and in polemics against other eschatological positions. Before God I tell you, the whiffs of idealism I caught whet my appetite, but lordy was it hard to find anything except what preterist idealist don’t believe.

  • You know Patrick, I’ve looked at preterist idealism (pretty seriously at one time); in fact, I’m in favor of hybridization wherever such a thing is warranted. I’ve looked at it enough to know that, despite their insistence, it does not effect how you live your Christian life. I’m not even going to stoop to the level of certain FP critics who might suggest a correlation between the mind-blowing, wholly unwarranted vitriol of pret idealists like Todd Dennis and his cohort Scott Thompson and their pret idealist doctrine; there are jerks on any side of the eschatology debate, and from what I can tell, Nate Dubois (a prominent pret idealist) is as charitable as anyone. I do wonder what’s up with the sarcastic, condescending tone of those other guys, however, and frankly it has soured me from looking at what they have to say. I mean, who wants to wade through the sewage to get to a rumored handful of change?

    I’d rather misunderstand some fine points of doctrine here and there and remain civil and respectful of my brothers and sisters in Christ. Teach me, please. Guide me. Heck, you can even warn me that I’m going to hell! But come on – stop impersonating the guy I’d meet there.

    Regarding the questions you raised, let me look at it. From at first blush, I can tell you there’s a major ambiguity in this passage both grammatically and lexically, and especially in how those two aspects interact. But for Pete’s sake – don’t take it to heart about the supposed “peer review” problem. Since when did they start submitting their material for peer review in a way different from FPs? At least there are actual books whereby people can make heads or tails of full preterism, whereas one always gets the impression that idealists are trying to hide what they really believe in vague, abstract universals and in polemics against other eschatological positions. Before God I tell you, the whiffs of idealism I caught whet my appetite, but lordy was it hard to find anything except what preterist idealist don’t believe.

  • patrick stone

    Steven said

    “Here I’m following the general FP reading of Sheol/Hades as roughly equivalent to “soul sleep”, which was something even the OT saints dreaded. ”

    I found this quote from 1 Enoch c. 5 while reading Charles’ commentary on Revelation

    “And over all the righteous and holy He will appoint guardians from among the holy angels,
    To guard them as the apple of an eye,
    Until He makes an end of all wickedness and all sin,
    And though the righteous sleep a long sleep, they have nought to fear”
    (p196-197)

    1 Enoch was written early in the 1st century BC (p197).

  • patrick stone

    Steven said

    “Here I’m following the general FP reading of Sheol/Hades as roughly equivalent to “soul sleep”, which was something even the OT saints dreaded. ”

    I found this quote from 1 Enoch c. 5 while reading Charles’ commentary on Revelation

    “And over all the righteous and holy He will appoint guardians from among the holy angels,
    To guard them as the apple of an eye,
    Until He makes an end of all wickedness and all sin,
    And though the righteous sleep a long sleep, they have nought to fear”
    (p196-197)

    1 Enoch was written early in the 1st century BC (p197).

  • Doug Moody

    Patrick,

    “And though the righteous sleep a long sleep, they have nought to fear””

    I am acquainted with the apochryphal and pseudopigraphal works of the inter-testamental and post new testamental periods, and am convinced that they have very little value to a Christian. Its not like they can’t be gleaned for gems of truth here and there, but one cannot depend on them to form doctrine. They not only disagree with canonical scripture, but they also disagree amongst themselves. That is why I have to conclude that although they have ancientness on their side, that doesn’t make them true. I wouldn’t use them to build a case on way or the other. They are interesting, but not useful.

  • Doug Moody

    Patrick,

    “And though the righteous sleep a long sleep, they have nought to fear””

    I am acquainted with the apochryphal and pseudopigraphal works of the inter-testamental and post new testamental periods, and am convinced that they have very little value to a Christian. Its not like they can’t be gleaned for gems of truth here and there, but one cannot depend on them to form doctrine. They not only disagree with canonical scripture, but they also disagree amongst themselves. That is why I have to conclude that although they have ancientness on their side, that doesn’t make them true. I wouldn’t use them to build a case on way or the other. They are interesting, but not useful.

  • Quick comment here (don’t tell anyone!), but I think that the 1 Enoch quote’s exactly the kind of thing we should expect if my statement is true. The O.T. saints I was referring to were those who had not been informed by the late-breaking doctrine of the Resurrection of the Dead. By the first century B.C, the doctrine of the Resurrection had long been revealed, but the encouraging tone of this quote would hardly be necessary if everyone were already confident in it and convinced of it. As for the idea that angels were watching the righteous in their sleep – well, that’s a nice, encouraging thought, but hardly necessary to be true in a literal sense (and wholly unsupported by canonical literature); I think the point is, “The righteous don’t need to worry about dying.” Which was true, as Daniel 12 told them.

    Good find, Patrick!

  • Quick comment here (don’t tell anyone!), but I think that the 1 Enoch quote’s exactly the kind of thing we should expect if my statement is true. The O.T. saints I was referring to were those who had not been informed by the late-breaking doctrine of the Resurrection of the Dead. By the first century B.C, the doctrine of the Resurrection had long been revealed, but the encouraging tone of this quote would hardly be necessary if everyone were already confident in it and convinced of it. As for the idea that angels were watching the righteous in their sleep – well, that’s a nice, encouraging thought, but hardly necessary to be true in a literal sense (and wholly unsupported by canonical literature); I think the point is, “The righteous don’t need to worry about dying.” Which was true, as Daniel 12 told them.

    Good find, Patrick!

  • patrick stone

    Doug said
    “I am acquainted with the apochryphal and pseudopigraphal works of the inter-testamental and post new testamental periods, and am convinced that they have very little value to a Christian. … They are interesting, but not useful.”

    I would have to disagree with you on this one Doug. Just as knowing ANE mythology can help us better understand the Creation story of Genesis, or reading 1 & 2 Maccabbees can help us understand the prophecies of Daniel, or the histories of Josephus the book of Revelation, I think apocalyptic literature written before and after the prophecy of Revelation can help us better interpret these ancient and mysterious visions.

    For example, Charles uses several parallel accounts in apocalyptic literature (in addition to the OT and NT) to conclude that the robes placed on the martyrs of the fifth seal are their resurrection bodies. He uses other parallels to come to the conclusion that the “sea” of Revelation 20:13 (and the sea gave up the dead) was the abode of the righteous saints as opposed to the unrighteous in Hades.

    Obviously you may not agree with his conclusions, but my point is that understanding contemporary works helps us better interpret the Bible…regardless of whether the contemporary work is in error (ie: not God inspired).

    @:

  • patrick stone

    Doug said
    “I am acquainted with the apochryphal and pseudopigraphal works of the inter-testamental and post new testamental periods, and am convinced that they have very little value to a Christian. … They are interesting, but not useful.”

    I would have to disagree with you on this one Doug. Just as knowing ANE mythology can help us better understand the Creation story of Genesis, or reading 1 & 2 Maccabbees can help us understand the prophecies of Daniel, or the histories of Josephus the book of Revelation, I think apocalyptic literature written before and after the prophecy of Revelation can help us better interpret these ancient and mysterious visions.

    For example, Charles uses several parallel accounts in apocalyptic literature (in addition to the OT and NT) to conclude that the robes placed on the martyrs of the fifth seal are their resurrection bodies. He uses other parallels to come to the conclusion that the “sea” of Revelation 20:13 (and the sea gave up the dead) was the abode of the righteous saints as opposed to the unrighteous in Hades.

    Obviously you may not agree with his conclusions, but my point is that understanding contemporary works helps us better interpret the Bible…regardless of whether the contemporary work is in error (ie: not God inspired).

    @:

  • Doug Moody

    “Obviously you may not agree with his conclusions, but my point is that understanding contemporary works helps us better interpret the Bible…regardless of whether the contemporary work is in error (ie: not God inspired).”
    Whether I agree or not is not the issue. I can agree, or disagree, yet there is absolutely ZERO basis upon which I can say with authority that I am correct. Can such literature help me look into the minds of ancient people? Of course! But don’t forget that there were cults and sects among the Jews, and each one had its own private interpretations of what the bible said (and didn’t say)

    Basing your interpretations of ANY biblical doctrine on the writings of ancient Jews, (or Christians for that matter) is fraught with potential for error. We all tend to see what we want to see, and when we are presented with something that agrees with us, we make a big to-do about it and put it in our bag of doctrinal tricks to back up our conclusions. That is wrong, and it shouldn’t enter a serious discussion about the bible as a means to prove our ideas. As I said, it is only “interesting”, nothing more.

    Think of it like this. Suppose 100 years from now someone finds our speculations on this blog and they cite our musings as the “ancient writings”, and you, Steve, and myself as ascended mystics! Would you want to be referred to that way? Would your writings be any more valid than the peoples of our future, simply because of their age?

    The Essenes were the sect who wrote the Dead Sea Scrolls. They were a monastic sect who copied out whole sections of the bible. Modern scholars are jubilant to find such things because they somehow believe that such writings “validate” and add credence to the canon. Well, while they might be nice to have, it ought to have been settled long ago in a believer’s mind whether the scriptures were authoritative for him or her. The scriptures are internally validated and, I believe, Divinely inspired. One either believes that or they don’t. Extra-biblical passages are OFTEN erroneous. I don’t want to use them to prove or disprove a point, because they are not canon – meaning they have not been approved under the hand of the Holy Spirit as being God-breathed, even if they are based upon the ancient’s correct understanding of scripture. From our lens, we cannot determine if they are or aren’t authoritative, and so once I go down that rabbit hole, I am treading on doctrinal quicksand.

  • Doug Moody

    “Obviously you may not agree with his conclusions, but my point is that understanding contemporary works helps us better interpret the Bible…regardless of whether the contemporary work is in error (ie: not God inspired).”
    Whether I agree or not is not the issue. I can agree, or disagree, yet there is absolutely ZERO basis upon which I can say with authority that I am correct. Can such literature help me look into the minds of ancient people? Of course! But don’t forget that there were cults and sects among the Jews, and each one had its own private interpretations of what the bible said (and didn’t say)

    Basing your interpretations of ANY biblical doctrine on the writings of ancient Jews, (or Christians for that matter) is fraught with potential for error. We all tend to see what we want to see, and when we are presented with something that agrees with us, we make a big to-do about it and put it in our bag of doctrinal tricks to back up our conclusions. That is wrong, and it shouldn’t enter a serious discussion about the bible as a means to prove our ideas. As I said, it is only “interesting”, nothing more.

    Think of it like this. Suppose 100 years from now someone finds our speculations on this blog and they cite our musings as the “ancient writings”, and you, Steve, and myself as ascended mystics! Would you want to be referred to that way? Would your writings be any more valid than the peoples of our future, simply because of their age?

    The Essenes were the sect who wrote the Dead Sea Scrolls. They were a monastic sect who copied out whole sections of the bible. Modern scholars are jubilant to find such things because they somehow believe that such writings “validate” and add credence to the canon. Well, while they might be nice to have, it ought to have been settled long ago in a believer’s mind whether the scriptures were authoritative for him or her. The scriptures are internally validated and, I believe, Divinely inspired. One either believes that or they don’t. Extra-biblical passages are OFTEN erroneous. I don’t want to use them to prove or disprove a point, because they are not canon – meaning they have not been approved under the hand of the Holy Spirit as being God-breathed, even if they are based upon the ancient’s correct understanding of scripture. From our lens, we cannot determine if they are or aren’t authoritative, and so once I go down that rabbit hole, I am treading on doctrinal quicksand.