The following is a list of the posts contained in the series entitled, “A Partial-Preterist Perspective on the Destruction of Jerusalem in 70 AD.” This is a 48-page term paper which I (Adam) carved up into much smaller sections for greater readability. It’s recommended that each section be read in the order in which it was posted:
It’s possible that there will be future posts which function as appendixes to what has been included here so far. I would like to ask that comments related to any post above be left under that same post, rather than here. Thanks, and may the Lord bless you as you study the subject of eschatology.
August 22, 2009
DISCLAIMER (May 2011): Since 2009, when I wrote this paper, I have progressed in my understanding of eschatology. I’m now closer to full preterism than I was at that time, so please take what I said about the differences between partial-preterism and full preterism with a grain of salt. Thank you.
UPDATE (September 2015): I’ve attached a PDF version of this paper here: A Partial-Preterist Perspective of the Destruction of the Temple in 70 AD
70 thoughts on “70 AD Term Paper”
Adam, I’m looking forward to reading this. In fact I was wondering recently if there was a good book written on this subject! Have you read the book “the Last Days Identified” by Don K Preston? If not, I highly recommend it.
Thanks. No, I haven’t read that book by Don Preston, but I’ll take note of your recommendation. Feel free to share any feedback as you read the 70 AD paper. Blessings to you today.
Victorious Eschatology: HaroldR. Eberle & Martin Trench. Amazing Read!
I’ve heard good things about that book as well. Thanks for the recommendation.
Adam; I have been accused of being a “partial preterist” because I believe that the destruction (Desolation/Dan.9:24-27) of Jerusalem happened in 70 AD! When I read Galatians 3:17… it speaks to me about the covenant in Dan. 9:27/Psalm 105:8-10/Jer.31:31-34/Heb.8:8-12(which covenant they brake), I don’t know how else to read it. It says in Gal.3:17.. “that was confirmed before of God in Christ’… that sure looks like the work of Calvary, and for that some say I don’t believe in the 1000 year reign of Christ. These people should write for TV mystery shows! Doug Lamb
Yes, it does seem like some of the people around you have jumped to pretty quick conclusions. I do consider myself to be a partial-preterist. Perhaps you’re just more “partial” than I am, and I am more “full” than you are. 🙂
I agree that the covenant spoken of in Daniel 9:27 is the New Covenant, and thus speaks of the work of Calvary. Regarding Galatians 3:17, it looks like you have quoted from the KJV or NKJV version. That’s interesting. I did a quick search on Biblegateway.com and only found the phrase “in Christ” in these two translations. Looking at the ESV, for example, it says, “This is what I mean: the law, which came 430 years afterward, does not annul a covenant previously ratified by God, so as to make the promise void.” Obviously, the covenant made 430 before the giving of the law was the covenant made with Abraham, which did indeed very much point to Christ. Paul’s arguments in Galatians 3 make this very clear. So even though most translations don’t contain the phrase “in Christ” in verse 17, that covenant certainly did point to Christ, as you have asserted.
As for the conclusion made by some that you don’t believe in a 1000-year reign of Christ, I’m not sure how they reached their conclusion…or which millennial view you personally espouse, for that matter.
Adam, as of current, are you so full preterist that you believe we are living in the new heavens and earth?
Hi Dan, I’m not calling myself a full preterist, but, yes, I do believe that we are in the new heavens and earth. I believe that this is covenant language, and that the old heavens and earth (the law and the old covenant) passed away in 70 AD when that age came to an end with the destruction of Jerusalem and the temple. I believe we’re now in the new covenant age, the time of God’s kingdom which will never pass away. That’s my short answer. I can expound on this later if needed. Where do you stand on these things?
If we are now in the new heavens and the new earth, why is there still death, sickness, mourning, for example, and why is there still war and sin, and are we also now living in glorified bodies? When did Christ return or at what point in the new heavens and the new earth will He return? Do we die in the new heavens and the new earth and then we are resurrected – to what? I’ve never heard of a more hopeless gospel than this!
When Isaiah prophesied of the new heavens and the new earth that God would create (Isaiah 65:17-25), his description included sin, dying, planting, and building. He described, prophetically, life on earth as we know it. The creation of the new heavens and the new earth would correspond with Jerusalem being created as a joy. See Galatians 4:21-31 for how Paul rejoiced over the heavenly Jerusalem, saying that she is the mother of God’s people. See Hebrews 12:22-24, where God’s people in the first century were said to have already come to the new Jerusalem.
There’s nothing hopeless about this. We, as God’s people, have eternal life. Beyond the grave we will live forever in the presence of God, free of war, sin, and sickness. Even in this life we are seated in heavenly places, raised up with Christ (Ephesians 2:6) above these things.
Jesus returned when He said He would – before His disciples could pass through all the towns and cities of Israel (Matthew 10:23), while some of His disciples were still alive (Matthew 16:27-28), before His generation passed away (Matthew 24:34, Mark 13:30, Luke 21:32), etc.
Adam, you didn’t answer Dwaine’s question about glorified bodies.
The Apostle Paul longed for freedom from “the body of this death” (Rom. 7:24). The freedom Paul longed for wouldn’t come at physical death, but when his body would be transformed into the likeness of Jesus’ resurrection body (1 Cor. 15:49). Jesus wasn’t raised as a ghost leaving His body behind to rot.
Hey, I thought I left a comment last night, but I don’t see it.
I have trouble understanding the Preterist view of the future hope for ALL of creation. What about the hope of the Earth, and the rest of God’s creation? Isn’t the purpose to destroy sin, and bring about Paradise Restored? Won’t the meek inherit the Earth? And the wicked be destroyed, turned to ashes under our feet?
Yes, you did leave a comment. For some reason it ended up in the queue to be moderated. That shouldn’t happen after a person’s initial comment is accepted, unless that person uses a different email address. Anyway, I wasn’t able to get to your comment yesterday, but here it is:
Well, there are a lot of questions here, but I’ll do what I can to address them. I believe that the white throne judgment began to take place in 70 AD:
I say “began” to take place, because I believe that those who are alive now will experience their personal judgment upon death, and that this has been the case since 70 AD.
I also believe that the general resurrection took place in 70 AD. One basis for this is what we see in Daniel 12. In the first verse of Daniel 12, we’re told that the prophecy which is to follow is about Daniel’s own people, the Jews: “At that time shall arise Michael, the great prince who has charge of YOUR PEOPLE. And there shall be a time of trouble, such as never has been since there was a nation till that time. But at that time YOUR PEOPLE shall be delivered, everyone whose name shall be found written in the book” (Dan. 12:1). This portion is clearly parallel to two other prophecies:  “Alas! That day is so great there is none like it; it is a time of distress FOR JACOB; yet he shall be saved out of it” (Jeremiah 30:7).  “For then there will be great tribulation, such as has not been from the beginning of the world until now, no, and never will be” (Matthew 24:21). Jesus places the time of this trouble, distress, and tribulation during His own generation, for after listing the signs which would take place before the temple was to be destroyed, (Matthew 24:1-3, Mark 13:1-4, Luke 21:5-7), Jesus emphatically states, “Truly, I say to you, this generation will not pass away until ALL THESE THINGS take place” (Matt. 24:34/Mark 13:30/Luke 21:32).
Both Jeremiah and Daniel are told that a remnant would be delivered from this time of great distress. Daniel clarifies that those who were to be saved were those “whose name shall be found written in the book.” This is a reference to the Lamb’s book of life (Philippians 4:3; Revelation 3:5, 13:8, 17:8, 20:12, 20:15, 21:27), so, clearly, these are believers. This calls to mind a remarkable fact of church history. In the Olivet Discourse, Jesus had warned His followers living in Judea to flee to the mountains when they saw “the abomination that causes desolation” (Matthew 24:15/Mark 13:14), that is, “Jerusalem being surrounded by armies” (Luke 21:20). Eusebius, known as the father of church history, tells us in 314 AD that the believers living in Judea in 66-67 AD did indeed flee when Jerusalem was being surrounded. Josephus, an eyewitness at the time, said the same and added that none of the Christians perished in the carnage that followed. Remigius (437-533 AD) tells us this:
Seeing then that verse 1 of Daniel’s prophecy was fulfilled in the first century AD, we come to verse 2, which reads: “And many of those who sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life and some to shame and everlasting contempt.”
This is clearly a time of resurrection, which many teach will take place corporately for everyone in the future, but Daniel was given a different time frame for when it would happen: “…it would be for a time, times, and half a time [i.e. 3.5 years], and that when the shattering of the power of the holy people comes to an end all these things would be finished” (Daniel 12:7).
Rome took 3.5 years to shatter the power of the Jewish people, beginning from Nero’s declaration of war against Israel in February 67 AD until Jerusalem and the temple were burned and destroyed in August/September 70 AD. The resurrection of Daniel 12:2 was to take place by that time, and I believe it did, making way for each believer to experience their own resurrection upon death. This did not happen for the saints who died prior to 70 AD. Therefore, the 1st century believers were looking forward to this time as their hope.
I believe this is also what is seen from Revelation 14:13, where at the time of the great tribulation (Rev. 7:14/Matthew 21:24), it is announced: “And I heard a voice from heaven saying, ‘Write this: Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord from now on.’ ‘Blessed indeed,’ says the Spirit, ‘that they may rest from their labors, for their deeds follow them!'”
I’m not sure what to say about expecting the wicked to be “turned to ashes under our feet.” What is your frame of reference for this idea? Your question about the hope of creation, to be honest, is one that I’m not yet settled on. Is there a Scriptural promise that the PHYSICAL heavens and earth are to be restored to a pre-fall Garden of Eden state? I don’t know. Do you believe there are Scriptures promising this? If so, what are they? I’ve come to believe that the Bible doesn’t speak anywhere of the END of the physical world, though, and that it appears to say quite the opposite:
 “Neither will I smite anymore every living thing, as I have done” (Genesis 8:21).
 “And He built His sanctuary like high palaces, like the earth which He has established forever” (Psalm 78:69).
 “The world is also established that it cannot be moved” (Psalm 93:1, Psalm 96:10).
 “…who laid the foundations of the earth, that it should not be removed forever” (Psalm 104:5).
 “One generation passes away, and another generation comes, but the earth abides forever” (Ecclesiastes 1:4).
Furthermore, it appears that the expression, “the heavens and the earth,” was a common metaphor for Israel and was covenant language. In Deuteronomy 31:30-32:1 we see that Moses addresses Israel by the terms “Oh heavens” and “the earth”:
Jeremiah also spoke of Jerusalem’s pending destruction (in 586 BC) in this way:
In Matthew 5:18, Jesus said that nothing would pass from the law until heaven and earth passed away and all was fulfilled (compare to Luke 21:22, where Jesus said that the time of vengeance upon Israel would fulfill ALL that was written). In Matthew 24:35, in the context of Jerusalem’s pending destruction in His own generation, Jesus then said that heaven and earth WOULD pass away, but that His words would not pass away. Since Scripture elsewhere says that the PHYSICAL earth will abide forever, it makes sense that here He was using that metaphor already seen in the OT where the heavens and the earth represented Old Covenant Israel.
In Revelation 21:1, then, John sees that the first heaven and earth had passed away, and there was a new heaven and a new earth. It was likened to the new Jerusalem (verse 2), which the author of Hebrews said was already a reality in the first century, for it was the New Covenant community (Hebrews 12:22-24; see also Galatians 4:21-31). All of this language is borrowed from Isaiah 65, where Isaiah saw a vision of a coming new heavens and new earth, where Jerusalem would be made a joy, yet in that new heavens and new earth there would still exist building of houses, planting of vineyards, and even sin and death. That sure sounds like this present age, doesn’t it? See also Isaiah 66:22-24. So the new heavens and the new earth is the New Covenant. And we see this same transition of the covenants in II Peter 3:10-12.
Adam, I am surprised that you believe the “general resurrection” began in 70 AD and continues to the present day. To “spiritualize” the resurrection is to deny the actual resurrection of Christianity, which is a bodily resurrection, and places your soul in danger (2 Tim. 2:16-18).
Adam said, “I also believe that the general resurrection took place in 70 AD. One basis for this is what we see in Daniel 12.”
The “resurrection” spoken of in Daniel 12:2 cannot be speaking of 70 AD, because the context will not allow it. We are given a clear time-frame for the events of Daniel 12:2 in 12:1. “Now at THAT time…” At what time? The time that Daniel had just been speaking of in the previous verses – Daniel chapter 11.
Daniel chapter 11 deals not with the time of the Roman empire, but with the Greek empire. Daniel 11:1-4 is clearly speaking of the Greek empire, beginning with Alexander the Great, and then being split among four generals upon his death. The rest of the chapter predicts ongoing conflicts between the kings of the North and South (the Seleucids and Ptolemies), which cannot refer to the Roman period. It also speaks of Antiochus Epiphanes IV, who put a (temporary) end to the Temple sacrifices and desecrated the altar, which was the abomination of desolation (Daniel 11:31 and 12:11).
So whatever the “resurrection” of Daniel 12:2 is speaking of, it is NOT speaking of 70 AD, or any event in the first century AD. Since this “resurrection” happens during the time of the Greek empire, and no one supposes there was a resurrection at that time, what can it be speaking of? I believe Daniel uses resurrection here as a metaphor for something else, and there is good reason to think this is the case.
Daniel and Ezekiel were contemporaries. In Ezekiel 37:1-14, Ezekiel uses a literal description of a resurrection to depict what is not an actual resurrection (I believe Ezekiel 37 speaks of the return of the Jews from Babylonian exile and the formation of the new, spiritual kingdom of Christ).
So given that the time-frame cannot be referring to 70 AD or the still future resurrection, and that Daniel’s contemporary used resurrection language as a metaphor for something else, then Daniel 12:2 is not speaking of the actual resurrection, either.Compare the events recorded in 1 & 2 Maccabees to Daniel 11:30-39 and 12:1-13. Daniel is using resurrection language as a metaphor for the spiritual revival which took place during the Maccabean period.
There are two different “abomination of desolations” spoken of in Daniel – when Antiochus Epiphanes desecrated the Temple in the 2nd century BC (Daniel 11:31 & 12:11), and the destruction of Jerusalem and the Temple in 70 AD (Daniel 9:27). So when Jesus refers to 70 AD as the “abomination of desolation spoken of by Daniel,” He is referring to Daniel 9:27 only since Daniel 11:31 & 12:11 had already taken place. To jump to the conclusion that all of the “abomination of desolation” passages in Daniel refer to the same event would be like assuming the little horn in Daniel 7:8 and 8:9 refer to the same person, which would be a mistake, since the little horns refer to two different kings from two different empires (Nero of Rome, and Antiochus Epiphanes IV of the Seleucid/Greek empire).
(Since this has gone long, I’ll continue my thoughts in a new post…)
(Continued from my previous post.)
Adam, like you, I also believe the new heavens and earth are a present reality. I believe it represents a spiritual land, with a spiritual city (New Jerusalem), and a spiritual kingdom. While there are many passages that speak of both the resurrection and the arrival of the new heaven and earth, they are never spoken of together in the same passage, except for Romans 8:18-25. But read Romans 8:18-25 carefully. Paul does not say the resurrection of the dead and the redemption of creation happen at the same time, he only compares the two.
I think it is particularly telling that no where in Matthew chapter 24, the key passage on 70 AD, does Jesus even speak of the resurrection.
In Romans 8:9-11, Paul lays out as explicitly as possible that the resurrection of the dead will be a physical resurrection, not some “spiritual” resurrection. The Christians Paul was writing to already had spiritual life, which they (and we) received the moment we entered into Christ’s covenant. Since they already had spiritual life, the only thing left for them to receive was physical life, when their physical bodies would be raised – the Spirit will give life to your “mortal bodies.” As if that wasn’t clear enough, this future giving of life to their mortal bodies is said to be just like Jesus’ resurrection. What happened with Jesus’ resurrection? He wasn’t raised spiritually, He was raised bodily by the Spirit, never to physically die again (Romans 6:8-9).
Here’s the absurdity of the hyperpreterists’ “spirit” resurrection in 70 AD. They would have God, who from eternity existed as Spirit, take on flesh, in which He would remain forever (through the incarnation and resurrection of Christ). On the other hand, they would have people, who started out as flesh beings, forever become spirit-only beings. So forever in Heaven, you have a God with flesh, and people without any flesh. How does that make sense?!
This is why many hyperpretersists are so desperate to “dispose of the physical resurrection body of Christ.” Many will claim that Jesus’ body went poof when He entered heaven, but there is no Scripture that even suggests such a thing. On the contrary, the Bible says He was raised in His body, never to die (physically) again. If His body was somehow annihilated out of existence, then His body died again (according to the Bible, the body dies when it is separated from its spirit).
Another problem, Adam, for your view that the general resurrection took place at 70 AD, and continues whenever you personally die, is that Scripture is explicitly clear that the general resurrection takes place on a single day, not over a long, ongoing period of time.
In Acts 17:32, the original Greek for “the resurrection of the dead” is plural, so it cannot be referring only to the resurrection of Christ. So when did Paul mention that the whole world would be resurrected? It would have been back in Acts 17:31, on the day when the whole world would be judged (Acts 17 obviously doesn’t record every word that Paul spoke on Mars Hill, but only a skeletal outline of his argument). So the final judgment takes place on A DAY (not over many days) that has been fixed, described as the LAST day in John 11:24.
Paul’s argument in Acts 17:22-31 uses tight logic throughout. But if the fixed day of judgment that Paul was speaking of is 70 AD, then it makes no sense, and Paul’s argument unravels at the most important part, the conclusion. Paul is telling the crowd that they must repent before that day comes. But consider Paul’s audience, they are Athenian pagan philosophers – 70 AD was completely irrelevant in regards to them personally being saved or lost. It isn’t like they were going to be killed in Jerusalem in 70 AD if they hadn’t first repented!
No, the fixed day, the last day, is speaking of the final judgment, when the resurrection happens. ALL people must repent before they physically die, or before the final judgment takes place, whichever comes first. Because once you die, or once Jesus returns in the flesh, your everlasting fate is sealed.
One more passage before calling it a day. In 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18, Paul is speaking of the Second Coming and the resurrection of the dead. If this passage is speaking of 70 AD, then it means the saints who had physically died prior to 70 AD were dead in the same sense that they would be made alive in 70 AD (1 Thessalonians 4:16b). Obviously, they are physically dead, but if you believe the resurrection is spirit only, then the “dead” cannot describe their physical condition, but their spiritual condition. But that is all wrong, because Christians prior to 70 AD already had spiritual life (Romans 8:9-10). In fact, the OT saints had been (spiritually) alive all along, even while they remained physically dead (Matthew 22:31-32). So when Christ returns with the “dead in Christ,” He returns with their disembodied spirits, and reunites them with their physical bodies located here on the earth, in the resurrection on the last day.
Adam, I don’t think any of the passages you mention teach that the planet earth will last forever, but I don’t want to get into that since I have gone on long enough already. I don’t get the impression that you have read my book that I have e-mailed you, but I think if you read it, you would find it useful. If you will promise to read it (it is a relatively short book) in a timely fashion, and e-mail me your mailing address, I will send you a physical copy completely free of charge and pay the postage myself. I offer this because you seem to be sliding towards hyperpreterism which I strongly believe is heretical, and I wrote my book to combat this, as I once was almost convinced of hyperpreterism myself.
Steve, forget Adam, I need that book!! I’ve gone from a premillennial rapture- pre-trib dispensationalist, to an amillennialist, partial preterist, now feeling like I am getting worked into preterism… but I do not agree in the general resurrection taking place. I have been on a roller coaster in the past 12 months, I’ll take any help I can get.
Dan, send me an e-mail at: rsteve76 “at” hotmail “dot” com
I’m down to only 2 extra copies.
For anyone else interested in my book, I can e-mail it to you in pdf form for free, just send me an e-mail with “Revelation book” in the title.
My book can be ordered from lulu.com, where it is sold at cost (I don’t make a penny on this, I wrote the book to help people out who find themselves in the same spot I found myself, struggling with hyperpreterism). The book is titled “Revelation: All Things New” and I’m the author.
Here is the link for those who’d like to order hard copies:
And here is the large print version (I haven’t personally ordered a large print version, so I can’t promise there aren’t any layout problems):
Hmm, I’ve already posted a reply, but it is awaiting “moderation,” perhaps because I posted some links in it. So I’ll try this again without links in case that post gets lost. I definitely understand the rollercoaster you are on – there was a time I couldn’t rest because I was so disturbed by hyperpreterism and questions about the resurrection. I am an amillenialist, (partial/orthodox) preterist that firmly believes in the future bodily resurrection, which happens at the Second Coming, when Christ returns to our earthly realm in the flesh.
Dan, if you or anyone else is interested in my book, send me an e-mail, and include something like “Revelation book” in the title so I know it’s not spam:
rsteve76 “at” hotmail “dot” com
Thanks for jumping in here. I’m not quite sure how you determined that I spiritualized the resurrection. I’m still working out what I believe on this, but my present conclusion is that those who have died in Christ now have redeemed bodies. I don’t imagine that they are disembodied spirits floating blissfully on the clouds or anything like that.
This is only anecdotal and certainly doesn’t determine doctrine, but, if you’re like me, you’ve heard or read numerous stories of those who say they temporarily died and went to heaven, before coming back to live an extended life. In all the stories I’ve heard, they have seen and/or talked to deceased saints who are walking around heaven in their redeemed bodies. Now, while growing up, I was taught that the general resurrection has not yet happened, and therefore no one has yet received their redeemed bodies. Yet the same people who taught me that also promoted these stories of people dying, going to heaven, and coming back to report that they saw people who already had their redeemed bodies. How can this be reconciled?
Well, I haven’t changed what I believe in order to render these stories true instead of false, but I’ve come to see that Scripture itself appears to place the timing of the resurrection at the end of the Old Covenant age. Yes, I did struggle against coming to that conclusion. I don’t know that I’ll be able to respond to all of your points right now, but I wanted to at least give you an initial reply.
Regarding the account in Daniel, yes, much of chapter 11 deals with the Greek and Maccabean period. I remember reading a fairly convincing article showing that the last part of chapter 11 deals with Ptolemy XV (who reigned from 47-30 BC) and Julius Caesar. This is certainly one chapter I do hope to study more deeply for myself at some point. However, I can’t agree that chapter 12 deals with a time period prior to Christ’s first coming. Looking at the language of Daniel 12:1, “And there shall be a time of trouble, such as never has been since there was a nation till that time…,” wouldn’t you agree that it’s awfully similar to what Jesus said in the Olivet Discourse? Speaking of an event that was future to His own earthly ministry, Jesus said, “For then there will be great tribulation, such as has not been from the beginning of the world until now, no, and never will be” (Matthew 24:21). The other parallel passage to these two would be Jeremiah 30:7, “Alas! That day is so great there is none like it; it is a time of distress for Jacob; yet he shall be saved out of it.”
So, for me, the context DOES allow for the resurrection (verse 2) to take place at that time (the end of the Old Covenant age, coinciding with the destruction of the temple in 70 AD). Furthermore, and I’m repeating what I already wrote in my response to Dan above, this was to be accomplished “when the shattering of the power of the holy people comes to an end” (verse 7). Isn’t what happened from 67-70 AD a fulfillment of these words? Wasn’t this “the time of the end” (verse 4), in conjunction with the disciples’ question to Jesus about the end of the age (Matthew 24:3)? If chapter 12 was about the Greek period, how would Daniel have stood in his “allotted place at the end of the days” (verse 13) at that time?
Knowing that you believe that the majority of the book of Revelation was fulfilled in the first century, how do you interpret these two statements?
 “And I heard a voice from heaven saying, ‘Write this: Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord from now on.’ ‘Blessed indeed,’ says the Spirit, ‘that they may rest from their labors, for their deeds follow them!” What took place at that time – the hour of God’s judgment (14:7) and the time of Babylon’s falling [verse 8] – that granted a greater blessing for those who would die in the Lord from that point onward?
 “The nations raged, but Your wrath came, and the time for the dead to be judged, and for rewarding Your servants…” This was said to coincide with the kingdom of the world becoming the kingdom of our Lord and of His Christ (verse 15).
I agree with you that “Ezekiel 37 speaks of the return of the Jews from Babylonian exile and the formation of the new, spiritual kingdom of Christ.” With that in mind, and since you say that Ezekiel 37 is parallel to Daniel 12, doesn’t that then leave room for a first century AD fulfillment of Daniel 12? After all, “the new, spiritual kingdom of Christ” wasn’t formed during the Greek period, but rather during the first century AD.
I would write more, but I need to run in just a minute here, and I’ll be occupied pretty much for the rest of the day. If you have the time, though, check out these two videos by Don Preston in response to the charge that some preterists are guilty of the Hymenaean heresy (you mentioned II Timothy 2:16-18 in your first comment). Together, the two videos amount to 25 minutes. If you’re able to check them out, let me know what you think:
 Part 1: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FEAakO_AbBI&feature=uploademail
 Part 2: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c8abslXVQhc&feature=uploademail
Here Don Preston briefly writes out 3 of the points that he addresses (although there is much more) in his videos:
P.S. I’ve begun to read your book, and I haven’t forgotten about it. I’m less than half way through, though…
Adam, from your belief that the general resurrection occurred in 70 AD, I take that to mean you either do not believe, or at least doubt that there will be a physical resurrection. Paul is very adamant in the NT that the resurrection of our earthly bodies is a very important doctrine.
I think I read somewhere you come from a Pentecostal background, understand that I am, how shall I say it, I am very much not a Pentecostal. =)
I have heard all kinds of different stories from people who “died” and returned to life with visions of the afterlife. A lot of these visions contradict each other, and many contradict plain teachings of Scripture, so consider me highly skeptical of such things.
What is the Scriptural support for “redeemed bodies” that don’t consist of your earthly body? The only thing that comes to my mind is perhaps (what is in my view) a misreading of 2 Corinthians 5:1-10. I believe the Bible is very clear on this point – when you die, you continue to exist as a disembodied spirit, until the Second Coming, at which point you are reunited with your body, which will be raised in a transformed state.
Words such as “redeemed,” “bought back,” “resurrection,” “to stand up again,” they all make it clear that it is the same body. Jesus didn’t have a “redeemed body” that was apart from His earthly body, it was His earthly body raised and transformed. I don’t see anything to support this idea of “redeemed bodies” that you’ve described.
Adam, I think all of Daniel 11 is about the Greek era, not the Romans. The latter part of Daniel 11 I believe is focused on Antiochus Epiphanes IV, including the last verses. In Daniel 11:40, Daniel wrote, “At the end time the king of the South will collide with him…” Who is the “him?” It is the guy that was being talked about in Daniel 11:31 – the Greek abomination of desolation guy, which can only be Antiochus. So the plain reading to the time-frame of Daniel 12:1-2 goes to Greece, not Rome.
Yes, Daniel 12:1 is similar to Matthew 24:21, but that by itself is not enough to prove your point. There are strong similarities between the little horn of Daniel 7:8 and 8:9, but I assume we agree that these are two different kings from two different empires. There is an abomination of desolation in Daniel 9:27 and 11:31, but again, I assume we agree that these are two different events.
In addition, there is an important difference between Dainel 12:1 and Matthew 24:21. In the Matthew passage, Jesus says something that isn’t said in Daniel 12:1, that such a thing would never happen ever again. Which is fits very well with my understanding, because 70 AD was far greater a disaster for the Jews than Antiochus was, and 70 AD actually put an end to ancient Jerusalem (thus preventing a recurrence of equal or greater magnitude).
As for Daniel 12:7, as I see it, God is saying that all these things would be fulfilled when Antiochus has taken the Temple and enforced his ways upon the Jews. When that happens, the Maccabee rebellion happens and wraps those events up.
Daniel 12:9 speaks of these things being sealed up until the end time. That fits very well with Daniel 8:17, referring to Antiochus, saying “Son of man, understand that the vision pertains to the time of the end.”
On the matter of Daniel 12:13, I don’t see any need to think this was fulfilled in either the Greek or Roman era.
“But as for you, go your way to the end; then you will enter into rest and rise again for your allotted portion at the end of the age.” I take that to mean “Daniel, don’t worry about it, you’ll die long before all these events take place, and thus bypass them, and the next time you are in the flesh again, it will be at the resurrection into glory.”
I want to clarify that I do not believe Ezekiel 37 and Daniel 12 are parallel passages. I believe they are speaking of two different things. The parallel I was making is limited to this: both passages use resurrection language not to describe the resurrection, but to make a metaphor. To which I would add Jesus and John in the NT sometimes used resurrection language to describe what wasn’t a literal resurrection. I made that point because many people take Daniel 12:2 to be referring to the actual day of resurrection, but I believe it is speaking of something different.
Adam, the following is in response to your questions on Revelation 11:18, and 14:7-8, 13. I agree with you that Revelation 11:18 and 14:7-8 speak of the late 60s leading to 70 AD. But as with all of the other 70 AD passages, the actual resurrection just isn’t there.
If Revelation 14:13 does not pertain to the resurrection of the dead, then what is this new blessing being spoken of? The key is the context. In the previous verse, 13:12, it says “Here is the perseverance of the saints who keep the commandments of God and their faith in Jesus.” That is essentially the same thing said in Revelation 13:10b.
In both 14:12 and 13:10b, these phrases “this is the perseverance of the saints” is immediately preceded with God executing judgment on those who had been persecuting His Christians.
Revelation 13:10a says, “If anyone leads into captivity, to captivity he goes; if anyone kills with the sword, with the sword he must be killed.” I believe that is speaking of Nero. Nero pursued, captured, and put to the sword Christians. So God rules on behalf of His people that therefore Nero will be pursued (he was), and he killed himself with the sword to avoid capture. So it is God paying Nero back for what he had done to Christians. When this statement is followed with “Here is the perseverance and the faith of the saints,” I take that to mean here is the justice that the Christians have been crying for to God.
In Revelation 14:11, I take these people being punished to be the disobedience Jews who accepted Caesar as their king instead of Christ (a la John 19:15). Since the Jews had rejected Christ in favor of Caesar, God turns the adulterous Jerusalem over to her lover (Caesar), and Rome turns on her and kills her (similar to Ezekiel 23:22).
So in Revelation 14:12, God is saying this is the judgment of God that Christians had been crying out for, God’s vengeance on the Jews for persecuting the Christians.
Now, we get back to Revelation 14:13. Obviously, all of those who died in the Lord are blessed, they rest from their labors, and their deeds follow after them – this is true of all such people, before, during, and after 70 AD. So what is the special nuance of meaning in this particular verse? I think it relates to what we saw back in Revelation 6:10-11.
In Revelation 6:10-11, the Christian martyrs could not rest because they had not yet received justice. Some of those martyrs had been dead for decades and Jerusalem was still standing. God tells them to wait just a bit longer, because the number of martyrs had not yet been completed.
In Revelation 14, Jerusalem IS finally being punished – “this is the perseverance of the saints.” Now that the wrath of God is finally about to come upon Babylon, these last martyrs (before the destruction of Jerusalem) can rest, because the judgment of God is now finally being carried out. That is the sense in which the martyrs in the late 60s had a blessing of rest that earlier martyrs didn’t have – beginning in 67 AD, God had begun His punishment on the Jewish nation.
So to read the resurrection into this passage, I think, would be a mistake. Don Preston draws large, sweeping conclusions from “small” passages in Revelation, especially Revelation 15:8, in order to try to prove his theories. Don Preston believes, among other things, that atonement for sin wasn’t actually accomplished at the cross, but 70 AD (which I find blasphemous in the extreme!).
I’ve read a lot of Preston’s stuff in the past. Even though it has been awhile, I’m pretty sure I remember what his main points are, so I have no desire to sit through a long video. He probably says something about how the resurrection was still future when Hymenaus was saying it was past, but it is NOW past; that in order to even try to deceive people in such a way back then proves that Paul taught an invisible, spirit resurrection, blah blah blah. Having spent much of the night already posting, I’m not gonna bother, as it wouldn’t be worth the time it would take to answer in detail. Good night. =)
Steve, my belief that the general resurrection occurred in 70 AD (followed by all who die in Christ since that time experiencing resurrection upon death) doesn’t mean that I’m opposed to the idea of physical, bodily resurrection. I just don’t see where Scripture says that the mortal bodies of the deceased have to be reconstituted in order for the dead in Christ to receive immortal, glorified bodies. Which passage would you say paints such a picture the clearest, a passage from which I might even see that grandma’s scattered ashes need to form the basis of her yet-to-be-realized glorified body?
Yes, I grew up in a Pentecostal environment, and – believe me – I have stories. 🙂 I don’t consider myself a Pentecostal either. I’m actually rather skeptical as well of most of the stories I’ve heard from those who say they’ve died and come back. I was mainly pointing out the inconsistency of those who might call me a heretic for believing that those who have died in Christ already have their redeemed/glorified bodies, while at the same time promoting the stories of those who say they’ve hugged the redeemed/glorified bodies of deceased saints.
I do agree with you that the abomination of desolation in Daniel 9:27 and in Daniel 11:31 are different, and also that the little horn of Daniel 7 (Nero) is not the same as the little horn of Daniel 8. Once again I’m not going to be able to respond to all of your points right now, but regarding Daniel 12:13, what “end of the age” is Daniel told about if not the end of the Old Covenant age he was living in? Also, I would observe that Daniel 12:2 is remarkably similar to John 5:28-29, where we see the phrase “in the tombs” instead of “in the dust of the earth” (as in Daniel 12:2). Here the two passages can be seen for comparison:
 “And many of those who sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt” (Daniel 12:2).
 “Do not marvel at this, for an hour is coming when all who are in the tombs will hear His voice and come out, those who have done good to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil to the resurrection of judgment” (John 5:28-29).
We haven’t really gone back and forth on this yet, but do you believe that anyone has yet experienced their personal judgment, or do you believe that everyone who has ever died is waiting for a future, corporate judgment? I remember being quite floored when I realized that Revelation 11:18 said that “the time for the dead to be judged” came at the same time as His wrath upon apostate Israel and the setting up of Christ’s kingdom.
More tomorrow perhaps, but I need to go to bed as well…
P.S. Joanne, I don’t know if you’re seeing this conversation or not, but if you are I’d be glad to hear your thoughts on these things as well.
Weird, I don’t see a reply button on Adam’s latest comment, so hopefully this reply ends up in the right place.
Adam, I appreciate your questions because it means you are listening and open-minded. But there is this book that I’ve written on this very subject… (nudge-nudge). ;^)
In Appendix 2: Resurrection, I go into some of the resurrection passages, explain the nature of our resurrection bodies, and why the resurrection of our current bodies is so important. Appendix 1: Hyperpreterism also has a lot about the physical resurrection, and I especially recommend the sections in that appendix that pertain to John chapter 11 (sections 15.7-15.10 in my book).
But if I had to make my case for the physical resurrection in brief, it goes to the very meaning of the word “resurrection.” The Greek word is “anastasis,” which comes from “ana” and “stasis.” “Ana” means “up,” and “stasis” means “stand.” So to be resurrected is to literally be made to stand up, as in to stand up AGAIN.
The dead are often referred to as “sleeping.” How so? When a person’s body dies, it falls down, it “lies down,” and doesn’t move – it has the appearance of sleep. So at the resurrection, that which is “sleeping,” lying down, stands back up. In Romans 8 and 1 Corinthians 15, Paul teaches that our resurrection will be just like Christ’s resurrection, and He was raised in His old body. Our resurrection bodies aren’t entirely new creations, they are old creations MADE new, they are re-created.
With the end of the age in Daniel 12:13, why does the “age” have to refer to the Mosaic age? There is more than one age discussed in the Bible, just as there is more than one “end time” in the Bible. On the one hand, Dispensationalists see the phrase “end time” and automatically assume it refers to the still future. On the other hand, the hyperpreterist sees the phrase “end time” and automatically assumes it must refer to 70 AD. My position is that the Bible sometimes uses the same or similar wording to refer to different things, and thus context is “king.”
I am not surprised there is similarity between Daniel 12:2 and John 5:28-29, because I believe Daniel 12:2 uses the resurrection as a metaphor, whereas Jesus is speaking of the literal resurrection in John 5:28-29. So this is to be expected. If you want to see my take on the two resurrections in John 5:25-29, see section 12.6 in my book. (At the end of my book, I put in a Scripture index, so if you’re curious how I interpret a particular passage, you can go there.)
In regards to personal judgment, there are different kinds of death/life, and different kinds of judgment. There is the distinction between physical death, and spiritual death (two completely different things). There are different times and kinds of judgment, too. An individual is currently judged in this life, for a person at any point is either spiritually alive or spiritually dead as they walk this earth. Another kind of judgment happens upon the physical death of an individual, where their spiritual state at that time is locked into place forever. And then there is the final judgment, where people are resurrected, where people are again judged in their bodies, their bodies going to one place or the other.
But God also judges groups and even nations. Since I believe Revelation is primarily dealing with God executing judgment against Jerusalem in the first century, I believe the “dead” in Revelation 11:18 refers to the disobedient Jews (they were spiritually dead, but they didn’t receive God’s judgment towards Jerusalem until 70 AD). Revelation 11:18 goes on to say that that judgment has to do with “and to destroy those who destroy the earth.” I believe “earth” is better translated as “land,” as in the Holy Land. Who was destroying the Holy Land and Jerusalem? The Jews, because it was due to their spiritual condition (dead) that forced God to send the Romans. The Romans were just the agent of God’s wrath, but the reason for the destruction was because of Jewish disobedience to God and the persecution of His people, the Christians.
What is the reward God’s bond-servants and prophets and saints and those who fear His name received at that time? New Jerusalem shows up when the old Jerusalem is taken out of the way. The Jewish nation is judged/condemned, and the Christians have now been vindicated in what they had been saying about Jerusalem concerning 70 AD.
@Steve There is a good 2 part video series by Don K. Preston speaking about the Hymenaean Heresy. Please watch both parts in the links below :
Part 1 : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FEAakO_AbBI
Part 2 : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c8abslXVQhc
I wasn’t able to read through all of this just yet, but I will when I get the chance Adam.
Thanks for jumping in here. I’ll look forward to your further thoughts when you get the chance. I actually posted those same two video links in the conversation above. Don Preston did bring out some interesting thoughts on how the Hymenaean error was akin to Judaizing and attempting to tie in salvation with the Old Covenant.
Mark, I have already said I am not going to take the time to watch Preston’s videos. 1-2 years ago, I did a great deal of reading of Preston’s material, numerous articles and written debates he has on his site. I know who he is, but I do not know you are or what you believe.
My point isn’t that hyperpreterists teach exactly the same thing that Hymenaeus taught. That is obviously not true, as hyperpreterists, which includes Preston, believe the resurrection happened at 70 AD, and Hymenaeus obviously taught the resurrection occurred prior to 70 AD.
The fact is, Paul doesn’t go into much detail about Hymenaeus’ heresy, so it is largely just speculation. But let’s not speculate, let’s look at the facts.
The hyperpreterist movement, like Hymenaeus, has led to the following:
#1. Shipwrecked the faith of some. 1 Tim. 1:19
#2. Entailed blasphemy. 1 Tim. 1:20
#3.Leads to ungodliness and spreads like gangrene/cancer. 2 Tim. 2:16-17
#4. Falsely claim the resurrection has already taken place when it is still future, upsetting the faith of some. 2 Tim. 2:18
If you are familiar with the hyperpreterists and what they have done over the past few decades, you will recognize all of these things. I have a preacher friend who grew up in the midst of all this when Max King started pushing this realized eschatology garbage. He has told me how it has torn churches apart, how it has, upon taking root, killed congregations.
I know a number of people, myself included, that have been deeply affected and disturbed by this doctrine. It has caused some people to leave the Church, or to become atheists altogether.
Although not all in this movement is guilty of such, it is nevertheless common among them to use dishonest tactics while spreading their teachings. I’m not sure how familiar you are with the implications of hyperpreterism. It isn’t just another eschatological theory – it affects/infects EVERYTHING else. Do you think Max King began as a universalist? But you see, over time, this false interpretation comes to change everything, leading people further into heresy. That is why the hyperpreterist is all over the map nowadays, because it spreads like a cancer, and no doctrinal matter is safe.
Preston now maintains that the atonement for sin wasn’t completed at the cross, but at 70 AD. Is that not blasphemous?! Even some of his fellow hyperpreterists have taken him to task on this.
It is impossible to know with certainty what exactly Hymenaeus taught, but from what we do know, there are striking parallels between the two.
In Ephesians 4, Paul lists seven things in the context maintaining the unity of the Spirit within the Church. One of those is the “one hope of your calling.” What is this one hope that unites all Christians? The one hope is the future resurrection of our mortal bodies (Romans 8:9-11, 23-25; Ephesians 1:11-14; Acts 23:6, 26:6-8, etc. Preston denies the future bodily resurrection, and thus denies the one hope that binds all Christians together.
Preston will claim that he doesn’t deny the resurrection, only that he has a different take on the nature of the resurrection. But since the resurrection taught in the Bible is a future physical one, then he HAS denied the resurrection, which is no small matter (see Paul’s response in 1 Cor. 15).
@Steve I’m going to try and be as respectful and kind as possible in answering your proposal as to why you believe Full Preterism is wrong. Firstly, it doesn’t matter who I am, or who Don Preston is, or who Adam Maarschalk is, or even who you are. The truth is the truth, and if people are turned off by the truth, or led astray because they were told the truth, that doesn’t make the truth any less the truth does it???
You’ve thrown in many Strawman fallacies to try and validate your view here, stating that, ‘Preterism broke up congregations, or people were thrown into confusion, or people had left the faith completely etc..’ What does that have to do with the TRUTH? In John chapter 6, Jesus was explaining who He was to many different people, including His disciples. There were many others who were following Jesus, just as the 12 Disciples were. Jesus used parables to explain that He was the bread of heaven, and if any man should eat of His flesh or drink of His blood, they would have eternal life. At hearing Jesus say these things, it says that many of His disciples turned back, and stopped following Him from the day onward.
Just because those disciples turned away, does not mean that Jesus was not telling the truth. Regardless of what the Truth may cause (division, turning away, apostasy, etc..) means nothing to the validity or legitimacy of the truth. But all of that aside, I can tell you that I’ve been involved in, or exposed to, every denomination and belief system within Christendom. I can tell you, that if there was anything that has turned me off from christianity, it would be all of the division and denominations we have out there to this day. I’ve been everything from a Baptist, Pentecostal, Non-denom., Messianic, 7th Day Adventist, and everything in between, I even lived with a Pentecostal pastor for 3 years when I first really gave my whole life to Christ (2002-2005), and let me tell ya, going through the headache of figuring out which doctrines were true and which ones were false was the worst experience of my life. I really wanted to serve God the right way but I did not know how. Learning about how we should keep Torah, the 7 Biblical Feasts, the sabbath day holy (which is Friday sundown to saturday sundown) or is all that legalism? To whether or not praying in tongues was right or whether I should get circumcised, etc.. and the list goes on and on of all the flaky things I had to wade through in my search for truth.
God actually had to pull me completely out of any denomination of men in Mid-2007. I’ve not been to a service since then. I got so confused about what was right and what was wrong, that I was stuck there for a little while. But then, as I started studying on my own, God started to enlighten my eyes to things that I had never seen before. Leaving the institutionalized denominations and organizations of men was the best decision for my christian walk. I was no longer brain washed by what this pastor said, or that minister said. I don’t mean to take you on a rollercoaster of my life, but you said you didn’t know anything about me or what I believed, so I thought I would fill you in on a little about myself.
But in 2008 I was first exposed to Preterism. I was honestly scared that this was just another goose chase, and it was just another flaky doctrine made up by people to keep them from thinking for themselves. So I put it on the backburner for 2 years (November 2008-December 2010). In December of this past year, I felt like God wanted me to study it more. So I did. I couldn’t believe the type of information I was finding. Never once, in all of my years as a believer in Christ, did anyone challenge me to study 1st Century History (time period between 30-70 AD specifically). I had never even heard the word PRETERISM until 2008. But as I have been studying it out the last 6 months, I can attest to the fact that it has given me more understanding, and clarity of the bible, than any other denomination, or doctrinal structure / system in all of the ones I was involved with or exposed to beforehand.
So, now that is out of the way, I want to ask you a few questions. How could Christ be the first to rise (RESURRECT) from the dead according to (ACTS 26:23 ; 1 CORINTHIANS 15:20 ; COLOSSIANS 1:18 ; REVELATION 1:5 ) when the bible illustrates Jesus and the apostles raising people from the dead in the gospels (Matt, Mark, Luke, and John) ?? Does the story of Jesus raising Lazarus from the dead ring a bell (John 11)?? This is a rhetorical question for you to answer and study further on your own.
How could Philetus and Hymenaean (2 Timothy 2:16-19) deceive people into thinking that the Resurrection had already occurred before 70 AD, If the Resurrection was being taught that the physical bodies would be coming out of graves and the sea? If the Resurrection was taught the way I just mentioned back in the days of Paul, then the people could have easily gone to the nearest cemetery and seen that Philetus and Hymenaean were wrong.
*(t is sown a natural body, it is raised a SPIRITUAL BODY.)*
Mark, those are great, thought-provoking questions you asked at the end of your post. Thanks.
Steve, as hard as I might try, I can’t see any basis for believing that Daniel 12:2 is a “metaphor” for resurrection from the dead, but that John 5:28-29 is a “literal” description for resurrection from the dead. In both cases those in the graves are awakened, and in both cases they either awake to everlasting life or to everlasting contempt/judgment. I’m going to have to disagree with you that this happened during the time of the Greek empire before Jesus had even come the first time. To me, and I’ve considered this carefully, it remains clear that Daniel 12 is a prediction of first century events.
As a partial-preterist, I imagine you agree that hardcore futurists don’t take seriously enough the many statements of imminence in the New Testament, such as “soon”, “near”, “at hand”, “at the door,” etc. It’s because they don’t take these phrases seriously, and because they “spiritualize” them instead, that the most popular interpretations today of the Olivet Discourse, the book of Revelation, the great tribulation, etc. leave it all yet to be fulfilled.
Do we have a case, though, if we ignore the same statements of imminence when they’re made about the general resurrection and the time of judgment for the dead? David Green has pointed some of these statements out:
Adam, you’ve never really answered my point about the time context of Daniel 12. Daniel 12:1 is a clear time statement, pointing back to the previous chapter. You agree with me that chapter 11 is about Greece, and that 11:31-35 is speaking of Antiochus Epiphanes IV in the Greek era. So at what point after this does it transition to the Roman era, and specifically, the first century? Because from Daniel 11:36 on, it keeps referring to a “he” or “him,” which means it is continuing to speak of the person already singled out. I don’t see a transition in Daniel 11 anymore than I see one in Matthew 24.
And as I’ve tried to explain several times in this comment thread already, it isn’t a simple matter of a single word or phrase. Phrases such as “about to,” or “near,” or “coming quickly” do not by themselves prove proximity in time. Sometimes these words and phrases CAN be used in a different way. Rather, it is the total context.
Now take one of the verses you listed, Acts 17:31, as a perfect example of what I’m talking about. Normally, mellw would mean “about to,” as in close in time. However, in that particular passage, if Paul is saying that day of judgment was near in time, then his argument wouldn’t make any sense! I explain this in 15.3 of my book, pages 1129-130, as Seroled pointed out.
The whole thrust of Paul’s argument is that this group of gentile, pagan philosophers (who live no where near Jerusalem) urgently needed to repent BEFORE the day of judgment comes. But if hyperpreterism is true, then there is NO NEED for them to repent before that particular day (70 AD), they need only to repent before the day of their own individual death. But that would be a judgment that takes place across many days, whereas this judgment has the whole world judged in A day, all together.
Mark, of course it doesn’t matter who you are, or who I am, or Preston, Adam, etc. All of us are self-taught, so the world doesn’t care what we have to say. My point was, I didn’t know you are, as in, what you believe, what perspective you were coming from.
I did not make a straw man argument, you misunderstood my point. about comparing hyperpreterism to Hymenaeus. My point was, the hyperpreterist movement has led to all of the things that Hymenaeus’ teaching led to. Jesus said you would know the root by the fruit. Hyperpreterism has been around a while now, and it has had devastating effects.
In what way was Jesus the first to rise from the dead, sense other people had been raised from the dead prior to Jesus’ resurrection? There is a difference between resuscitation, and resurrection. In resuscitation, a person is merely restored to physical life. In resurrection, a person is not only restored to life, but their bodies are forever changed, and they are immortal.
When Lazarus was raised, he would die again. When Jesus was raised in His physical body, He was raised never to die again (Romans 6:9). That is the difference, and what a difference it is!
Adam, Mark, I now have a question for y’all. What is the life that Paul’s readers would receive in the future, the life that would be given to their mortal bodies (Romans 8:11)? It cannot be life in their spirits, because the previous 2 verses make it clear they already had life in their spirits. Nor can it refer to mere physical life, because they were still alive when Paul was writing Romans. If this future life they would receive is some spirit life in 70 AD, why is it said their MORTAL BODIES would receive it? And that it would be just like the kind of life Jesus’ body received in His resurrection? We know exactly what kind of life the Spirit gave to Jesus’ body at His resurrection – everlasting physical life.
When Jesus was raised, He was transformed, and He was no longer subject to temptation. This is the “spiritual body” that Christians will receive at the resurrection, our physical bodies changed so that they are no longer prone to the weaknesses of the flesh.
Mark, as to your question how could Hymenaeus deceive people about the resurrection already taking place if they expected a physical resurrection, let me ask you, since you have apparently fallen to the same ploy. Did you not used to believe the resurrection would be physical? Until some people convinced you that the resurrection is a sprit-only event, that has already occurred? Well, there’s your answer. It happens every time an otherwise “orthodox” Christian gets sucked into hyperpreterism.
Of course, this is only speculation. Paul doesn’t really explain what exactly Hymenaeus taught about the resurrection. Did he claim that it was something only available to a few people, instead of everyone? We simply don’t know.
Was Hymenaeus’ heresy primarily about “Judaizing?” We can’t say for sure. But obviously the heresy had something to do with the resurrection, which is interesting. The early Christians were in agreement with the Pharisees over the resurrection. And the 1st century Pharisees believed in a physical resurrection, not some spirit-only resurrection. So if Hymenaeus’ error was simply Judaistic, it probably wouldn’t include a controversy over the resurrection. We have examples of Paul arguing against the Judaizers throughout his letters and in Acts, and there is no dispute concerning the resurrection (apart from with the Sadducees, who denied the resurrection altogether).
So where did Paul run into conflict concerning the resurrection? With the Greeks and their Greek philosophy. Those that denied the resurrection, and downplayed the importance of our physical bodies often were tied to gross immorality. And of course, Hymenaeus’ teaching is tied to gross immorality. It seems likely to me that, if anything, Hymenaeus’ teaching was probably a form of syncretism, between Jewish and Greek beliefs. It may very well be the case that he married the Greek conception of a spirit-only afterlife with the Jewish concept of resurrection. The interesting thing is, unlike in Romans and Galatians and Acts, Paul doesn’t bother to refute their doctrine, he just dismisses it away, as if it was obviously false. Which would fit quite nicely if they taught a spirit-only resurrection to people firmly grounded in a physical resurrection.
But this is, of course, all just speculation. What isn’t speculation is that hyperpreterism has produced the same fruit as Hymenaeus.
Mark, I don’t know if you’re aware of this, but there are strong similarities between hyperpretersim and gnosticism, particularly how they deemphasize the importance of our mortal bodies.
(Moved by Admin, by request)
Hi Adam. Hi Steve.
Adam, what of Kenneth Gentry’s Martyr’s Millennium (Rev 20:4-6)? I know that you wrote a post on his view about a year ago. Rev 11:18 DOES fit well with the view that a resurrection and a judgment took place in AD70.
Steve, Appendix 1: Hyperpreterism. 15.3 Acts 17:30 -32, pg.129… Paul’s sermon on Mars Hill ( 17:30 -31) does NOT fit with the Full Preterist view that the day of resurrection and judgment was AD70.
Maybe there is common ground in Kenneth Gentry’s view?
Have a great night guys…
Seroled, I’m not sure what Gentry’s “Martyr’s Millenium” is, so I cannot comment on that (unless someone can provide a link).
There is certainly no dispute that 70 AD was A judgment day. I just do not believe it was the final judgment. I also believe the Bible teaches there was a “resurrection” that took place in the first century (John 5:25-27, Revelation 20:4-6). I just do not believe it was a “literal” resurrection – the resurrection spoken of in John 11 and 1 Corinthians 15. The literal resurrection entails changing the nature of our physical bodies and being made immortal.
Here’s the link to Kenneth Gentry’s Martyr’s Millennium. It’s about half way down the page.
I can’t find a reply button to Seroled’s comment, so I’ll post my reply here.
Thanks for the link, that was an interesting read, comments, too. I agree with a lot of what Gentry said, and that mirrors my own evolution of thinking in some ways. I, too, was stuck into thinking the people in Revelation 20:4-6 encompassed all Christians throughout the ages, until I read something in Homer Hailey’s commentary on Revelation. He pointed out to me that the focus wasn’t on future generations, but THAT generation, and it made a lot more sense after that.
I’m still not sure in what way these people were said to be “resurrected,” as the “first resurrection.” They already had spiritual life, and they weren’t physically raised. A resurrection into reigning? Sounds weird to me. I’m tempted to officially retire for life from trying to understand Revelation chapter 20. =)
Thank you for reminding me of that post which touches on the “Martyrs’ Millennium.” It’s this one, specifically:
Yes, I still think there are a lot of good points made by Gentry there, and good points made by Duncan as well in the part above that where he echoed a lot of what James Stuart Russell taught. Steve, I know what you mean. Sometimes I also want to officially retire from trying to understand Revelation 20.
Steve, here’s what I said concerning chapter 11: “…much of chapter 11 deals with the Greek and Maccabean period. I remember reading a fairly convincing article showing that the last part of chapter 11 deals with Ptolemy XV (who reigned from 47-30 BC) and Julius Caesar. This is certainly one chapter I do hope to study more deeply for myself at some point.” I didn’t specifically acknowledge “that 11:31-35 is speaking of Antiochus Epiphanes IV in the Greek era.” Looking at the text right now, it appears that Antiochus Epiphanes IV is indeed in view through verse 32. A transition period, of an undetermined length, then appears to be in view in the next three verses:
The stumbling by sword, flame, captivity, and plunder would seem to be that period of time when Judea fell to the Syrians until the time of Julius Caesar.
In addition to examining the text of Daniel 11 for the last couple of hours, I’ve also been looking at a number of online commentaries. Thank you for prompting me to do this. Otherwise I think I would have procrastinated. I’ve learned some interesting things.
This is the point in Daniel’s account where the majority of the writers seem to stop speaking and interpreting with confidence. I’ve seen only a couple who say that Antiochus Epiphanes is still in view by the time “the king” is mentioned in verse 36, but even they say that it only partially (and obscurely) refers to Antiochus and at the same time typifies a future Antichrist. Some see a 2000 year + gap right here between verses 35 and 36, as I’m sure you know. Most, however, say that what follows from verse 36 onward does not or even “cannot” accurately describe Antiochus Epiphanes. From what I’ve been reading just now on his life, I very much have to agree.
There seems to be a near consensus that Kittim (verse 30) = Rome, and the Dead Sea Scrolls even name Rome here instead of Kittim, so it should be safe to say that Rome is already on the radar as a formidable force at this point in the account: “For ships from Kittim shall come against him, and he shall be afraid and withdraw, and shall turn back…”
Among the reasons I’ve seen for why verses 36 onward do not describe Antiochus Epiphanes are these:  He was not able to “do as he wills” (verse 36), for he was held in check by Rome.  There is no record of him speaking astonishing things against the Most High God (opposite to what is said in verse 36), and  he DID embrace the traditional gods of his society (opposite to what is said in verse 37). The historian Pliny says that Antiochus “contributed lavishly to the shrines at Athens and Delos,” and “We do not know of any particular words of blasphemy uttered by Antiochus against the Jewish God.” It’s also said of Antiochus Epiphanes that he “put great honor upon Jupiter by building a splendid temple to Tages” and, according to Polybius, he “excelled all kings who preceded him in expensive sacrifices and gifts in honor of the gods.”  Antiochus never had a great fleet of ships (opposite to what is said in verse 40).  Antiochus never made inroads into Egypt beyond the region of Memphis as he suffered a final defeat at Alexandria, and he never made it close to Libya (opposite to what is said in verses 42-43).
Is it not possible, however, that “the king” of verse 36 is a reference to the line of the Caesars? The beast of Revelation, after all, is spoken of as a corporate entity at times, and (as in Daniel 7) it bears 7 heads representing a succession of 7 kings. The Caesars did in fact speak astonishing things against God. Augustus Caesar referred to himself as “The Son of God and the Savior of the World,” according to Roman inscriptions, and Nero had similar words minted on the royal coins concerning himself. (These things are quite possibly in fulfillment of verse 37). [As a side note, Jesus may in fact be briefly mentioned in verse 37, if the expression “the one desired by women” refers to the desire of many Jewish women to bring the Messiah to birth. This desire is said to be ignored by “the king.”] The Roman empire was divided into provinces, with powerful rulers overseeing them, including 10 Senatorial provinces (verse 39). What is “the time of the end” (verses 35, 40; also Dan. 12:4, 13), if not the end of the age spoken of quite often in the New Testament? (Jesus died in the last days – Hebrews 9:26; the end of the age also came upon Paul’s audience in Corinth – I Cor. 10:11, etc.)
Here’s where Julius Caesar does seem to clearly come into the picture. Verse 41 says that “the king of the north” will “come into countries and shall overflow and pass through” in response to an attack by “the king of the south.” Verses 42-43 go on to say that “the king of the north” will entirely take over Egypt and secure their treasures of gold, silver, and precious things, while also gaining a following among the Libyans and the Cushites. Julius Caesar defeated Pharnaces II of Egypt, and extended the Roman Empire as far south as Ethiopia, Libya, and northern Africa. Verses 44-45 say that “the king of the north” would hear alarming news from the east and the north, and that after destroying many he would “come to his end, with none to help him.” Julius Caesar was in the midst of conquering the southern part of the Empire when he learned that a rebellion had broken out at Rome. He was assassinated in Rome by trusted friends who were closest to him. Taking note that “Edom and Moab and the main part of the Ammonites” were spared while the surrounding regions were overthrown (verse 41), we can recall that when the believers fled from Jerusalem and Judea in obedience to Christ’s words around 67 AD they were able to dwell safely in Pella, which is in that same region in modern-day Jordan. If Julius Caesar left that region alone while he was expanding the Roman empire southward, that would explain why Christ’s followers were able to dwell peacefully there while Rome carried out its war on Israel from 67-73 AD.
Adam, you really believe “And the wise among the people shall make many understand, though for some days they shall stumble by sword and flame…” gives you a different century, different king, and different empire? Come on, man! A transition claim like that would make even a dispensationalist blush! =)
“Then the king…” in v. 36, another transition? Who would read a transition here? That’s no transition! Daniel 11:2-4, 19-20, etc. THOSE are transitions between empires and kings. Phrases like “then the king” is an obvious continuation of what was being discussed. And I don’t see how anyone can, in good conscience, make then the king = then a new empire with a new line of kings arised.
It seems the true justification for many to transition from Greece to Rome is because it conform to secular ancient history as we currently know it. But so what? That is of secondary importance. First things first, we ought to let the Biblical text speak for itself, rather than shoehorning it into secular history. How many times has secular ancient history been changed to be brought into conformity with what the Bible has said all along? How many times has Bible, and even the book of Daniel, been “wrong,” only to be vindicated after a single discovery? Yeah, secular history is interesting, but we shouldn’t use that as an excuse to do violence to the text.
As far as Antiochus Epiphanes IV not being able to do as he wills, speaking against the Most High God, etc. these don’t carry much weight. The phrase “then the king will do as he pleases” is in the context of speaking about magnifying himself against God. Antiochus DID elevate himself against God – he “overruled” the Mosaic Law and put a (temporary) end to the sacrifices, and took the Temple away from the worship of God. In Daniel 8:11, it says Antiochus “even magnified itself to be equal with the Commander of the host; and it removed the regular sacrifice from Him, and the place of His sanctuary was thrown down.” In 8:25, it is said he “will even oppose the Prince of princes.”
Not only is there no transition, but the latter part of chapter 11 continues using the same references to the Greek empire as before – the king of the North and king of the South. And the end of the chapter continues to follow the king of the North, and Antiochus was the king of the North.
Further examples of a continuation is in “those who have insight” of 11:33 & 12:3. The crisis Antiochus provoked over following the Mosaic Law or rejecting it provoked people to choose sides – were they gonna dedicate their lives to it, or were they going to reject it altogether? The crisis left no room for being inbetween. Thus many “awoke” to everlasting life (their zeal for the Lord was kindled), and others “awoke” to everlasting contempt (when push came to shove, they chose to reject God for the ways of Greece and the world).
Reading what the Jewish people went through under Antiochus, the “time of distress such as never occurred” is certainly appropriate. Compare the refining and purging of 11:35 with 12:10. There is the abolishing of the regular sacrifice in conjunction with the abomination of desolation (11:31 and 12:11).
In Daniel 8:19, speaking of Antiochus abolishing the regular sacrifice and trampling the holy place (8:8-14), refers to it as “the appointed time of the end.” 11: 35 refers to “until the end time,” and 12:4 “until the end of time.” These atrocities will come to an end, and then there will be restoration (8:14, 12:12).
As far as secular history, it could be wrong. Or it could be that Daniel 11:36-45 goes back over some of Antiochus’ deeds, as 11:31 and chapter 12 refer to what he did against God’s people.
To sum it all up, there is no pressing need for a transition. I see no transition. I see no hint of a transition. From what I have read, the writers that have found a transition were first dead set on finding a transition for theological or historical reasons. I don’t understand why it seems so important to you to find a transition to Rome. If Daniel 12 is speaking of Rome, so be it, it doesn’t greatly affect me either way, as I believe the resurrection in Daniel 12:2 isn’t literal, anyway.
You asked, ” in v. 36, another transition? Who would read a transition here?” In my experience online and “offline,” I’d have to say that just about everyone sees a transition there, whether they are futurist, historicist, preterist, or an “ist” of another kind. 🙂 There are multiple reasons, but a big one (and a common one) is that Antiochus Epiphanes simply doesn’t fit into the descriptions which follow from Daniel 11:36 onward. I realize you see no transition from the text, and that’s fine and it’s your prerogative. For me, there are stronger contextual clues in Daniel 12:1-13 as far as what’s going on there than I am able to see in the last 12-15 verses of Daniel 11. In part (but only in part), it’s because of what seems apparent to me in Daniel 12 (i.e. that it speaks of events happening in the Roman Empire in the first century) that I look “for a transition to Rome” prior to chapter 12.
I’ll keep this response brief… Returning to the larger discussion here concerning the resurrection, I took the time to read once again a very well-put together article on the subject by David Curtis. Having done so, I have to say it does a lot to express where I stand on these things, and I can recommend it to you and anyone else:
Adam said, “You asked, ‘ in v. 36, another transition? Who would read a transition here?’ In my experience online and “’offline,’ I’d have to say that just about everyone sees a transition there, whether they are futurist, historicist, preterist, or an “ist” of another kind.”
Yes, a whole lot of folks read a transition in Daniel 11:36, but my point was different. My point was, who reads a transition there going from the text of Daniel 11 itself. Everywhere I have seen people see a transition there, it is justified by things OUTSIDE of Daniel 11, rather than coming from Daniel 11 itself. The transition is there in order to make it conform to one’s view of prophecy or history, but it doesn’t naturally arise from the text itself.
A few years ago, I would have had no problem accepting a transition in Daniel 11:36 or 11:40. But then, I used to be, more or less, a futurist. But I have come to develop a deep respect for Scripture in its context, letting the text speak for itself, rather than trying to conform it to theological theories or history/science as we currently understand it. To read a significant transition in 11:36 or 11:40, how are you not doing the same thing as the futurists?
Further contextual clues, from Daniel itself, is found in Daniel 8:24, where, speaking of Antiochus Epiphanes IV, it says he will destroy the holy people, which matches perfectly with Daniel 12:7’s shattering the power of the holy people.
Duncan, I think, said Daniel 11:36’s indignation refers to the first century AD. But Daniel 8:19, speaking of Antiochus, talks about the final period of indignation. Which also fits with Daniel 11:31’s telling of how Antiochus desecrated the sanctuary, did away with the regular sacrifice, and set up the abomination of desolation.
Still further, Daniel chapters 10-12 all go together as one unit. The only empires explicitly mentioned are Medo-Persians and Greece. There is no reference to another empire after them, certainly no explicit mention. Which matches the vision in Daniel chapter 8 – it also only mentions two empires – Medo-Persian and Greece. And that vision ends by speaking of Antiochus and what he did, along with his death. So it fits then that Daniel 10-12 also ends with Antiochus, including his death (compare 8:25b with 11:45b).
Does it not trouble you at all that the entire justification for putting in a transition comes from outside the book of Daniel, and against the overwhelming internal context of Daniel that says there is no transition?
Adam, I’ve read a couple of times now the link you’ve provided about the resurrection. Have you read my appendices on hyperpreterism and the resurrection? I think my appendices point out significant problems with David Curtis’ (and Duncan’s) view on the Second Coming and the resurrection of the dead.
I go into some detail on Daniel 2, 7, 11:36-12:13 in my book, The Antichrist and the Second Coming.
II. Preliminary Considerations Regarding the Book of Daniel and the Coming of God’s Kingdom
III. The Fall of the Magnificent Human Image at the Establishment of the Kingdom of God (Daniel 2)
IV. The Little Horn of the Fourth Beast (Daniel 7)
V. The King of the North and the End of the Age (Daniel 11:36-45)
VI. The Great Tribulation and the End of the Age (Daniel 12:1-13)
VII. The Day of the Lord in the Old Testament
VIII. The Day of the Lord in the New Testament
IX. The Man of Lawlessness (2 Thessalonians 2)
Appendix A: Why I Disagree with the Full Preterist Paradigm
You will probably think it is too “hyper” (and I don’t talk much about Nero as these scriptures do not apply to him) but there it is. See here http://www.amazon.com/Antichrist-Second-Coming-Preterist-Examination/product-reviews/1615790373/ref=dp_top_cm_cr_acr_txt?ie=UTF8&showViewpoints=1
Thanks for jumping into the conversation. One of the things we’ve been talking about here (as you may or may not have noticed) is the end of Daniel 11. Just a little bit ago I was looking over an older post that Seroled had mentioned, “Minority Views on the Millennium Part 1,” and in one of the comments you quoted an author by the name of Mickelsen, on his view of Daniel 11:40-45. I’ll go ahead and copy and paste it here, so that information can be part of this conversation:
I agree with you that Antiochus is not in view from verse 36 onward in Daniel 11, and that this portion deals with a time frame beyond the second century BC, i.e. that it pushes toward the end of the Old Covenant age (70 AD). A couple nights ago, I looked into some things in order to respond to Steve, and this is what I came up with as I thought out loud about verses 40-45:
I somewhat considered Titus as a candidate for this king, but then saw the above details in Julius Caesar’s life which seemed to fit here. You’ve prompted me to at least consider the role of Titus here again. I realize that you’ve written about this portion of Daniel in Chapter 5 of your book (pages 167-205). I’ve at least skimmed through a good part of that chapter, and I’ll have to take an even closer look at it.
I am amazed at how few preterists have good answers to these scriptures. I come along and offer some, but nobody bothers to consider my position (at least I am not bitter 😉
Below is my position in a nutshell. I think you are showing some influences from Mauro in what you write. I do not find his position convincing (see below) but preterism has not come had many alternatives. I think you know that my position says that ultimately the Antichrist was the spirit from the abyss (Rev. 11:7; 17:8)– a demonic king (cf. the kings of Pesia in Dan. 10:13). We are being shown more than just human rulers in Daniel and Revelation (cf. Dan. 10:21-22). The defeat fo the Antichrist is not the destruction of a man, but the destruction of a demonic ruler (the demonic prince of the Romans, Dan. 9:26-27) that worked through a man–through Titus.
By the way Paul is teaching on the king of the North in his discussion of the man of sin (cf. Dan. 11:36-37 with 2 Thess. 2:4).
THE DIFFICULT TASK OF PRODUCING A PRETERIST CANDIDATE FOR ANTICHRIST
Dispensational scholar Randall Price notes correctly that “only the futurist school has been able to develop a self-consistent interpretation of the Antichrist concept from the scriptural witness of the two testaments.”32 This sounds impressive at first, but futurists have a much easier task than preterists do. Because futurists say the Antichrist will come in the future, they do not need to provide any historical fulfillment. All that futurists have to do is provide a reasonable futuristic scenario of Antichrist’s actions and harmonize it with the relevant Scripture passages. Preterists, after harmonizing the Scriptures, have to show how they were fulfilled in history—a much more demanding task.
The present work provides a concept of Antichrist that is both consistent with the Old and New Testaments and is unified in one historical figure (Titus) and one three-and-a-half-year period (AD 67-70), cf. Daniel 7:25; 12:7; Revelation 13:5. This is a next to impossible task unless one is on the exact right track. Consider the difficulties Bible expositor Phillip Mauro has in providing a historical fulfillment related just to Daniel 11:36-45.
Mauro applies the description of the king of the North in Daniel 11:36-39 to Herod the Great (37-4 BC). He immediately runs into problems, however. Because Daniel 11:36 says that the king of the North would prosper until God’s wrath against the Jews was accomplished (i.e., AD 70; cf. Dan. 9:26-27), Mauro has to show that the reign of the king of the North extended up to AD 70. Since Herod the Great died around the time of Jesus’ birth (c. 4 BC), Mauro is forced to say the king of the North does not just refer to Herod but to his dynastic successors as well—Herod Antipas, Herod Agrippa I, and Herod Agrippa II.33 Thus, in his exposition of just one verse, Mauro already needs four rulers to produce a historical fulfillment for the king of the North. Needless to say, he is off to a rocky start!
Mauro continues his exposition in Daniel 11:40-43. Because the actions of the king of the North in these verses do not fit Herod, or even his successors, Mauro insists that Daniel 11:40-43 is speaking about Caesar Augustus and the time of the battle of Actium (31 BC).34 Mauro then insists that the identity of the king of the North in Daniel 11:44-45 returns to Herod the Great and the time of Jesus’ birth (c. 4 BC).35
In a span of just ten verses relating to the king of the North (Dan. 11:36-45), Mauro’s theory requires five rulers and a span of more than one hundred years to show a historical fulfillment! Daniel 11:36-45 represents only a small portion of the Scriptures dealing with Antichrist, and Mauro cannot even come close to applying it to one person or one three-and-a-half-year period.36 I say this not to criticize Phillip Mauro but to show how difficult a preterist exposition of Antichrist truly is. Clever exegesis is not enough. Unless there is an inherent fit between one’s position and Scripture, a preterist unification of all the Scripture verses related to Antichrist is impossible.
Below is Daniel 11:36-45 with a brief summary of my position (for a more complete discussion see chapter 5 of this work).
36. Then the king shall do according to his own will: he shall exalt and magnify himself above every god, shall speak blasphemies against the God of gods, and shall prosper till the wrath has been accomplished; for what has been determined shall be done. 37. He shall regard neither the God of his fathers nor the desire of women, nor regard any god; for he shall exalt himself above them all. 38. But in their place he shall honor a god of fortresses; and a god which his fathers did not know he shall honor with gold and silver, with precious stones and pleasant things. 39. Thus he shall act against the strongest fortresses with a foreign god which he shall acknowledge, and advance its glory; and he shall cause them to rule over many, and divide the land for gain. 40. At the time of the end the king of the South shall attack him; and the king of the North shall come against him like a whirlwind, with chariots, horsemen, and with many ships; and he shall enter the countries, overwhelm them, and pass through. 41. He shall also enter the Glorious Land, and many countries shall be overthrown; but these shall escape from his hand; Edom, Moab, and the prominent people of Ammon. 42. He shall stretch out his hand against the countries, and the land of Egypt shall not escape. 43. He shall have power over the treasures of gold and silver, and over all the precious things of Egypt; also the Libyans and Ethiopians shall follow at his heels. 44. But news from the east and the north shall trouble him; therefore he shall go out with great fury to destroy and annihilate many. 45. And he shall plant the tents of his palace between the seas and the glorious holy mountain; yet he shall come to his end, and no one will help him.
Daniel 11:36-45 is an intricate prophecy; the ten verses in this section describe a number of very specific events. The following is my proposed fulfillment of this section:
In response to an attack by the Jews on occupying Roman soldiers (vv. 40-41), Nero sent Vespasian and Titus to Judea to subdue the Jewish nation. They led a massive invasion of the Holy Land in AD 67. The campaign was going well until Nero died in mid-AD 68. Nero’s death plunged the Roman Empire into civil war as various factions struggled to determine who would rule in Rome. In AD 69, Vespasian and Titus entered this fray. To finance their takeover of the Empire, they needed the “precious things” of Egypt (vv. 42-43); they also planned to block Egypt’s grain shipments to starve Rome into submission, if necessary. Thus, the Flavians first secured Egypt in their bid for the Empire and then turned their attention toward Rome (note, the family name of Vespasian and Titus was Flavius).37 At this time (mid AD 69), Titus was granted sole authority over both Judea and Syria, possessing sovereignty over the domain of the king of the North (i.e., Syria).
From Egypt, Titus invaded Judea a second time in the spring of AD 70 (vv. 43-45) while his father waited to sail to Rome. At Passover of AD 70 Titus resumed his attack on Jerusalem; the city and Temple would fall five months later (cf. Dan. 9:26-27). Thus, God allowed Titus to prosper in his destruction of the Jews during the three-and-a-half-year period of March/April of AD 67 to August/September of AD 70, the time until God’s wrath against the Jews was accomplished (Dan. 11:36; Luke 21:20-24). This was the time of the “great tribulation” (Dan. 12:1) which resulted in the shattering of the Jewish nation’s power (Dan. 12:7).
Elevating himself above every god, Titus was worshiped in the Temple shortly before it was destroyed (Dan. 11:36-37; cf. 2 Thess. 2:4). The foreign god that assisted Vespasian and Titus in their victory (v. 39) was the Greco-Egyptian deity Sarapis (see Tacitus, The Histories, 4, 81-82). In response to this, the Flavians advanced Sarapis’ glory as they added him to the pantheon of Roman gods. At the AD 70 destruction of the Jewish nation, the land of Israel was divided up and sold for profit (v. 39; see Josephus, The Jewish War, 7, 6, 6).
The king of the North meets his end at the time of his attack on Jerusalem (v. 45). This does not seem to apply to Titus, as he did not die at AD 70. The ruler who met his end at this time, however, was not the man Titus but the demonic king of the North working through Titus. Just as the kings in Daniel 10:13 and Revelation 17:8-11 ultimately refer to demonic rulers, so the king of the North was demonic. It was the demonic ruler from the abyss (cf. Rev. 11:7) who met his end and was cast into the lake of fire at the parousia in AD 70 (Rev. 19:20; cf. Dan. 7:11, 21-22). Thus, it was the spiritual dominion Titus possessed that came to an end at this time (cf. Dan. 7:23-27; 1 Cor. 2:6).
THE ANTICHRIST AND THE TEMPLE
Looking at the scriptures related to the Antichrist, one finds a common thread: the Antichrist’s attack on the Temple. For example, the little eleventh horn changes the times and law (Dan. 7:25). The setting of the religious calendar as well as legal judgments was the responsibility of the Temple in the first century. The Flavians changed these when they set up the equivalent of a new Sanhedrin at Yavneh in AD 69. The prince to come destroys Jerusalem and the Temple (Dan. 9:26) and makes the Jewish nation desolate (Dan. 9:27). Titus accomplished this in AD 70. The king of the North invades the Holy Land (Dan. 11:41) and attacks God’s holy mountain on which the Temple stood (Dan. 11:45), resulting in the shattering of the Jews’ power (Dan. 12:7). This happened in AD 70 with Titus’ destruction of the Jewish nation. The length of time that Titus spent warring against the Jews was three-and-a-half years (“a time, times and half a time,” or “forty-two months”); this was the span of the Antichrist’s persecution (Dan. 12:1,7; Dan. 7:25; Rev. 13:5).
The man of sin/lawlessness captures the Temple and is worshiped there (2 Thess. 2:3-4; cf. Dan. 11:36-37). Titus was worshiped in the Temple shortly after he captured it in late summer of AD 70 (Gittin 56b). The beast destroys harlot Babylon (Rev. 17:7-18). In my discussion of Revelation 17-18 (in the next volume of this work), I will show how harlot Babylon represents the Temple system of unfaithful Israel (cf. Ezek. 16) that was destroyed by Titus in AD 70. All these things were accomplished by the demonic spirit from the abyss, the spirit of Antichrist that worked through Titus in AD 70. One last point, notice the son motif connecting Jesus and Titus: one, the Son of God; the other, the son of the physical ruler of the world—Christ and Antichrist.
32. Randall Price, “An Overview of the Antichrist.” World of the Bible Ministries, http://www.worldofthebible.com/Bible%20Studies/antichrist.pdf.
33. Philip Mauro, The Seventy Weeks and the Great Tribulation (Swengel, PA: Reiner Publications, 1975), 140-142.
34. Ibid., 150-157.
35. Ibid., 157-162.
36. Despite the glaring difficulties of Mauro’s position regarding the king of the North of Daniel 11:36-45, James Jordan has adopted it. In his book The Handwriting on the Wall: A Commentary on the Book of Daniel (Powder Springs, GA: American Vision, 2007), Jordan tries to apply Mauro’s position on the king of the North to the little horn of Daniel 7 (something even Mauro did not attempt). While Jordan is a very intelligent man, I find his commentary on Daniel to be quite esoteric and unconvincing. He sees the first ten horns on Daniel 7’s fourth beast as representing the first ten Caesars, Julius to Vespasian. I agree with him on that. He sees the eleventh little horn of the fourth beast, however, as not being a Roman power but a Jewish power. He says the little horn represents the line of the Herods as well as the Jews who rejected Jesus (p. 387). I find many of Jordan’s interpretations in Daniel to be fanciful; often the scriptural connections he makes are tangential and do not hold up.
For a devastating critique of Mauro’s position, see Thomas A. Howe, Daniel in the Preterist’s Den: A Critical Look at Preterist Interpretations of Daniel (Eugene, OR: Wipf and Stock, 2008), 537-597. I agree with many of Howe’s criticisms of preterist interpretations of Daniel; I think his futuristic solutions are off-track, however.
37. The family name of Vespasian, Titus, and Domitian was Flavius. They are referred to as the Flavian dynasty.
Duncan, what role do you see for Nero in Bible prophecy?
Also, do you try to justify the switch in subject from Daniel 11:35 to v. 36? I mean, not from history, nor from other parts of the Bible, but in terms of Daniel chapter 11 itself? It is all well and good to come up with an interpretation that you believe fits history and the broad context of the Bible, but what about the specific context in Daniel 11? I ask this because I view changing kings/empires/centuries in the latter half of Daniel 11 as going against the layout of the chapter itself.
I have worked on my book for 11 years and written about 1000 pages (only half of which are out; vol. I is out but not vol. II) and have had little to say about Nero except for how he does not fit most scriptures. Here is something on the connections between the little horn of Dan. 7 and the individual beast of Revelation. The little horn/individual beast is not Nero. http://www.theos.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=16&t=3203
As to your question on Dan. 11; it is a good one. Do not have time for it right now but I will try to get to it. If you want the indepth answer get my book. You can get the ebook version (kindle) for like 10 bucks (such a deal!) http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B004P8JXHO/ref=pd_lpo_k2_dp_sr_3?pf_rd_p=486539851&pf_rd_s=lpo-top-stripe-1&pf_rd_t=201&pf_rd_i=1615790373&pf_rd_m=ATVPDKIKX0DER&pf_rd_r=1A6AECR1W597JD1YT2M7.
Duncan, I’ve been doing some reading about your book and I have a few questions and comments.
Do you see a connection between 666 and Nero? Don’t you think it strange that Nero was the first official Roman persecutor of Christianity, began the war against the Jews, and doesn’t play a role in Bible prophecy?
I think arguing that the saints in Daniel 7:25 refers to the rebellious, disobedient Jews who were actually persecuting God’s saints is difficult to swallow in the extreme. I understand that one could argue this is from Daniel’s perspective, and that he is speaking of his fellow Jews, but would Daniel have looked upon those wicked Jews who had led to the Babylonian captivity as “the saints?” I can’t imagine that he would, so I just can’t see him calling the disobedient Jews in the first century “the saints.”
I’m not inclined to pay money for any book that does not accept the physical resurrection of the dead, and the future Second Coming of Christ. I’ve read your criticisms of Gentry, that he is guilty of “pretzel logic” in trying to distinguish between 70 AD and the Second Coming. I agree, he IS inconsistent. If Gentry were to get into a debate with a competent hyperpreterist, I fully believe they would eat his lunch. But this isn’t because (partial) preterism is wrong, but because Gentry is confused about which passages refer to what. I think the NT, correctly understood, does distinguish between 70 AD and the Second Coming, and that the NT writers were NOT confused between the two (contrary to Gentry).
However, I have never seen someone who denies the future physical resurrection explain Romans 8:9-11 without, drawing from your lingo, turn himself into a pretzel. And for those who believe 70 AD is the day when God judged the world and raised the dead, every time I have seen them try to explain how Paul’s argument in Acts 17:31 makes sense under their view, another pretzel. If you want me to pay for your book, you’re first going to have to convince me that the NT doesn’t teach a physical resurrection.
Duncan, I forgot I had one more question. On the link you provided, referring to Revelation 20:4-6, you said, “These believers were not spiritually dead, they were physically dead (cf. Rev. 6:9-11) and are being resurrected at AD 70 (cf. Rev. 11:7-18).”
If you believe the “first resurrection” of Revelation 20 was neither physical nor spiritual, what kind of resurrection do you see this as being?
Did this delicious discussion get removed, continued on somewhere else? I almost finished your book Steve, thanks for the copy you sent me.
I’m new to this line of study, so to help me I read a great little book called, The Message From Patmos, by Rev David S. Clark and found it very easy to read and it gave me a much better understanding of Revelation than I’ve had before. Now I’m ready for a book(s) that goes into more detail and deeper study on the subject, and I’m asking Steve Robertson or Adam Maarschalk’s advise for a layman. I’m more inclined toward the partial Preterist Post Mill view I guess. Thanks for your help. Tony
Hi Tony, thanks for stopping by. I’m somewhat familiar with David S. Clark (I’ve quoted from him before), but I haven’t read that book you mentioned. Steve might have other suggestions for you, but two books that come to mind are these:
 Gentry, Kenneth L. Before Jerusalem Fell: Dating the Book of Revelation (An Exegetical and Historical Argument for a Pre-A.D. 70 Composition). American Vision: Powder Springs, Georgia, 1988.
Available here: http://store.nicenecouncil.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&products_id=472
 Gregg, Steve. Revelation: Four Views (A Parallel Commentary). Thomas Nelson Publishers: Nashville, 1997.
Available here: http://www.amazon.com/Revelation-Four-Views-Parallel-Commentary/dp/0840721285/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1255552520&sr=8-1
I second Adam’s recommendation of Kenneth Gentry’s “Before Jerusalem Fell.” Gentry’s book was pivotal in my understanding of Revelation. It can (legally) be downloaded in pdf form with an Internet search. “Before Jerusalem Fell” is a scholarly book arguing for the early date of Revelation (mid 60s AD) and that Revelation’s main topic is the (then) imminent destruction of Jerusalem. Dr. Gentry is a post-millennial partial-preterist.
Another book I would humbly suggest is a book I have written, “Revelation: All Things New.” It is written in an informal manner, and relatively short. In it, I attempt not only to explain Revelation, but also how Revelation fits in with the rest of NT prophecy and biblical history. The hyperpreterist/full-preterist position is also addressed and argued against. I am an amillennial partial-preterist.
I can send you a pdf version of my book for free if you e-mail me: rsteve76 “at” hotmail “dot” com
My book is available in print (at cost) here: http://www.lulu.com/product/paperback/revelation-all-things-new/13227754
The study of Revelation is an exciting and rewarding experience, and may God bless you in your studies!
I have a book on Revelation coming out in a few months entitled The Antichrist and the Second Coming: A Preterist Examination, volume two (volume one looked at Daniel). Here is a little something on how to interpret Revelation.
GUIDELINES FOR THE INTERPRETATION OF REVELATION
I propose the following guidelines for the interpretation of Revelation:
1. The events of Revelation were about to happen when the book was written: The events described in Revelation would “shortly take place” (Rev. 1:1); the time was “near” when John wrote (Rev. 1:3). This nearness applied not just to the first three chapters, but to the prophecies of the book (Rev. 22:6-10).
2. Revelation was written around AD 65 under Nero—the sixth Caesar of Rome (Rev. 17:10): The historical context of Revelation is as follows: In early AD 67 Nero would send Vespasian and Titus to Judea to subdue the rebelling Jewish nation (cf. Rev. 6:1-2).49 This was the beginning of the end for Israel. Titus was the prince to come (Dan. 9:26); he would bring the covenant curses and fulfill God’s promise to destroy the Jewish nation for not keeping the covenant (cf. Deut. 28:49-53, 63-64). In June of AD 68 Nero would commit suicide and the whole Roman Empire would be thrown into crisis; the empire would be like a ship without a rudder for the next year and a half (Rev. 16:10-11). Rome would recover from its death throes in December of 69 (Rev. 13:3). At that time, Vespasian would go to sit on the throne at Rome while Titus returned to Judea (from Egypt, cf. Dan. 11:40-45) to finish his three-and-a-half-year destruction of the Jewish nation. The forty-two-month period (March/April of AD 67 to August/September of AD 70) that it took Titus to destroy the Jewish nation (Rev. 13:5) is the historical context of Revelation (Rev. 11:2; cf. Dan. 7:25; 12:7).
3. Revelation is a tale of two cities (Babylon and New Jerusalem) who are two wives (the harlot and the bride). It is obvious that the bride is a wife, as she is about to become married. Notice, however, that the harlot is also a wife—a widowed wife (Rev. 18:7). Unfaithful Israel went from a queen to a widow when she had her husband killed (cf. Matt. 21:5). These two women/cities represent the two covenants and those who were part of them. (Galatians 4:21-31 provides the basic narrative of Revelation.) The old covenant harlot (centered in Jerusalem, cf. Ezek. 16) is destroyed at the time that the new covenant bride (New Jerusalem) becomes married (Rev. 19:1-9; cf. Matt. 22:1-10). The covenant curses spoken of in Leviticus (26) and Deuteronomy (28-32) were about to come on the unfaithful Jewish nation as a result of their ultimate breaking of the covenant when they had Jesus killed (cf. Matt. 21:33-45). The four references in Revelation to sevenfold judgments (the seven seals, trumpets, thunders, and bowls) are based on the four sevenfold judgments that were to be Israel’s punishment for breaking the covenant (Lev. 26:18, 21, 24, 27-28). These covenant punishments culminate in the beast’s destruction of the harlot in Revelation 17-19. As God had said, the children of Israel would “rise and play the harlot” in the last days (of the old covenant) and be destroyed (Deut. 31:16-17, 29).
4. The Greek word gē—commonly translated as “earth” in Revelation—is often better translated as “land”: The symbol of the land usually refers to the land of Israel, although it also carries the wider meaning of the domain of God’s covenant people (cf. Rev. 5:10). The covenant curses in Revelation would focus on Israel—the unfaithful dwellers on the land. The great tribulation that was about to happen would come upon the whole world (the Roman Empire would almost collapse in AD 69), but it would be focused on those who dwelt on the land (Rev. 3:10; cf. Dan. 11:40-12:7; Matt. 24:15-21). With the AD 70 full establishment of the kingdom of God (Rev. 11:15-18) the whole world would become the land—the domain of God’s new covenant people (Rev. 21:1-2; see Isa. 65:1-19 where the new heaven and new earth speaks of the full establishment of God’s new covenant people at the AD 70 destruction of Israel, cf. Rom. 10:20-21).
5. The book of Revelation is an unveiling of the spiritual realm: Revelation is making the invisible realm of the spirit visible by way of symbols (Rev. 1:1). Although the images in Revelation are symbolic, they often contain physical referents to help one identify the historical events they are associated with (e.g., the merchandise of Babylon is the merchandise of the Temple, Rev. 18:12-13). The eight kings of Revelation 17:9-11 are ultimately spiritual rulers (cf. the kings and princes of Greece and Persia in Dan. 10:13, 20-21). The fact that the eighth of these kings comes out of the abyss confirms this (Rev. 11:7; 17:8). What was destroyed in the lake of fire at AD 70 (Rev. 19:20) was not a man, nor the Roman Empire, but the demonic beast from the abyss that worked through Titus in his destruction of the Jewish nation (cf. Dan. 9:26).
6. Symbolism is the primary means of communication of Revelation: If one analyzes the way Jesus is revealed in Revelation, it is always by way of symbols. Jesus does not have white hair, nor seven literal stars in his hand, nor a sword coming out of his mouth (Rev. 1:12-16). No one will ever see him as a lamb with seven eyes and horns (Rev. 5:6). No one will see him as a male child on the throne of God (Rev. 12:5). No one will see him on a flying white horse (Rev. 19:11-21). One should expect the images in Revelation to be symbolic. The less absurd images in Revelation (e.g., the two witnesses) are just as symbolic as the more absurd images (e.g., the beast with seven heads and ten horns). This is in contrast to the so-called literal interpretive approach to Revelation. The “literal” approach relies on absurdity as the main criterion for what is literal and what is symbolic. This literal approach is inadequate. Although the mode of communication of Revelation is by way of symbols, the spiritual events and truths that the symbols represent are profoundly real.
7. To find the meaning of the symbols used in Revelation one has to examine Scripture (especially the OT)—allow Scripture to interpret Scripture. Below are examples of this that relate to the interpretation of harlot Babylon:
a. Examine how a given symbol is used in the book of Revelation: Some symbols are defined in the passage in which they occur; other symbols are defined in other places in the book. In Revelation 17:1 we are told that the harlot “sits on many waters.” This is explained in verse 15 where we are told that the waters are symbolic of “peoples, multitudes, nations and tongues.” For Jews, Jerusalem and the Temple were the spiritual center of the world. Jews from every nation of the world congregated there (cf. Acts 2:5).
Some symbols are not defined in their immediate context but in other places in Revelation. In Revelation 17:18 and 18:21 we are told that harlot Babylon is “the great city.” We have already been told in Revelation 11:8 that “the great city” is where Jesus was crucified. One has to pay close attention to connections such as this. Many interpreters discount this connection, acknowledging that the great city in 11:8 is Jerusalem but saying the great city in chapters 17-18 refers to something else.
b. Examine how a given symbol is used in the NT: In Revelation 18:24 harlot Babylon is said to be guilty of the blood of the “prophets and saints.” In Matthew 23:35 Jesus said all the righteous blood shed on the earth would be required of the generation that rejected him. It was Jerusalem and her leadership that was responsible for the death of the prophets and saints (Matt. 23:34-37).
The subject of Revelation (two women/cities that are two wives) is shown in Galatians 4:21-31. There we are told that “these things are symbolic” of the two covenants and those who are part of them. The Jerusalem above in Galatians equates with the New Jerusalem in Revelation (which comes out of heaven, Rev. 21:2). Similarly, physical Jerusalem in Galatians equates with the “great city” of Babylon in Revelation (Rev. 18:21)—the city where Jesus was crucified (Rev. 11:8).
c. Examine how a given symbol is used in the OT: This is especially important. The meaning of many of Revelation’s symbols is found in the OT. Probably the biggest reason that Christians have difficulty in understanding Revelation is because we do not know our OT as we should. For example, the image of the harlot (Rev. 17:1) is not found in the NT outside of Revelation (although the concept of spiritual unfaithfulness is briefly touched on in a few places, e.g., James 4:4). While the NT does not use the image of the harlot, the OT often does; with two minor exceptions it always refers to God’s unfaithful old covenant people (e.g., Deut. 31:16-17; Ezek. 16, 23; the book of Hosea, etc.). Deciphering the meaning of OT passages is not always an easy task. Revelation usually makes allusions to OT passages, not direct references—often condensing and/or making reference to more than one passage at a time. I find the following from Beale on the relationship between Revelation and the OT to be helpful:
. . . the place of the OT in the formation of thought in the Apocalypse is that of both a servant and a guide: for John the Christ-event is the key to understanding the OT, and yet reflection on the OT context leads the way to further comprehension of this event and provides the redemptive-historical background against which the apocalyptic visions are better understood; the New Testament interprets the Old and the Old interprets the New.50
Being mindful of the subject of Revelation (the destruction of God’s unfaithful old covenant people and the full establishment of his new covenant people) provides a useful guide in evaluating how OT references are used in the book. While there is some universalization of the OT images used in Revelation, most retain an essential connection with their OT usage. As Beale notes, “John uses OT references with significant degrees of awareness of OT context.”51
d. Often one has to go through these steps (a-c) to get the full depth of meaning of a given symbol or group of symbols in Revelation.
Merry Christmas Adam!
Steve and Duncan, thank you for your feedback to Tony in response to his question.
Duncan: Merry Christmas to you too!
Thank you to all for the references and the insight…appreciate it very much.
I am interested in your opinion on the above. If you have time.
Adam, do you have any plans to address the resurrection of the dead?
As far as I can tell, it seems the resurrection is the one subject you avoid, even though the resurrection lies at the heart of the conflict between orthodox preterism and hyperpreterism.
Yes, I plan to address the subject of the resurrection of the dead. I began creating a post with all the Scripture passages I can find on the subject, with very minimal observations/questions on my part. It should be up fairly soon, and it will be open for discussion/thoughts/questions.
Thanks, Adam. The reason why I ask is because years later, I still get people contacting me by way of your blog to help them avoid the slide into hyperpreterism. My impression of you is that you are an intelligent, honest seeker of truth, which is why I don’t understand how it is you’ve apparently gone into hyperpreterism without first resolving the matter of the resurrection.
I believe the nature of the resurrection body, the events of the resurrection day, and the timing of the resurrection are absolutely incompatible with 70 AD. For myself and many others, the resurrection is where hyperpreterism goes to die.
As you write your post, here is a story you might appreciate: A preacher friend of mine was right in the thick of it, back when hyperpreterism blew up under Max King in the 1970s. Unlike me, he is sympathetic to hyperpreterism and the arguments that the Second Coming was supposed to happen in 70 AD. But as he explained to me, “I’ve read hundreds of pages on the resurrection and 1st Corinthians 15 (from the hyperpreterist perspective), and for the life of me, I still can’t understand it!”
Steve, I’m not sure what your definition of “hyperpreterism” is. Others have said that “hyperpreterists” believe that the gifts of the Holy Spirit have ceased, that no one sins anymore after 70 AD, etc. I don’t believe either of those things.
Regarding the Lord’s coming, among partial preterists who say that Jesus came in judgment in 70 AD, but that His “final return” (or Second Coming) is in our future, I don’t see a consistent pattern of thought. One will say that passages A, C, D, F, and I are about His coming in 70 AD and passages B, E, G, and H are in our future. Another will say that passages A, B, E, F, and H were fulfilled in 70 AD and passages C, D, G, and I will be fulfilled in our future. I’m glad our righteousness in Christ isn’t dependent on getting that doctrine correct.
I’m still working on the resurrection post(s).
Hello Adam, I’m glad you asked. When I use the term “hyperpreterism,” I don’t use it in a derogatory or mean-spirited fashion, but in a literal way. Preterism = “past” & Hyper = “over,” as in taking things too far.
Before Max King and company came along, preterism already had a meaning, and it did not mean that ALL prophecy had already fulfilled. So when Max King & co. came along, they adopted the preterist name, but changing the meaning, effectively hijacking the term. Preterist didn’t used to mean “heretical belief about the resurrection,” but that is how it is often understood now.
This is why I use the term “hyperpreterist” instead of “full-preterist,” which is a loaded and misleading term. Some might object that “hyperpreterist” is also a loaded term, and it is, which is why I’d prefer they come up with their own term rather than hijacking a term already in use.
A hyperpreterist is everyone who believes ALL prophecies have already been fulfilled, especially the Second Coming, the final judgment, and the resurrection of the dead.
Adam said, “Regarding the Lord’s coming, among partial preterists who say that Jesus came in judgment in 70 AD, but that His “final return” (or Second Coming) is in our future, I don’t see a consistent pattern of thought.”
The consistent pattern of thought among preterists is that some passages refer to 70 AD and not the future Second Coming, and that some passages refer to the future Second Coming, but not to 70 AD. Furthermore, there is a great deal of consistency in treating certain passages – I don’t think there are too many preterists (of the non-hyper variety) that claim 1 Cor. 15 is about 70 AD and not the future Second Coming.
Contrast this with hyperpreterism – there is no consistent pattern of thought on the resurrection body. Is it a corporate, covenant body? An individual “spirit” body received at death? A one time event? An ongoing event?
Adam said, “I’m glad our righteousness in Christ isn’t dependent on getting that doctrine correct.”
Adam, we’ve already been over this – Paul taught the doctrine of resurrection was central to the Gospel of our salvation (1 Cor. 15), and he booted people out of the church who, among other things, falsely taught the resurrection was past (1 & 2 Tim.). Paul taught the Church to be “diligent to preserve the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.” That included being united in the “one hope of your calling” (Eph. 4:1-4), which is the redemption of our body (Rom. 8:23-25, Philip. 3:7-14) at the resurrection of the dead (Acts 23:6, 24:15, 26:6-8).
The doctrine of resurrection isn’t a secondary or optional doctrine.
Ultimately, the only consistency that matters is consistency with the Word of God. The hyperpreterist view(s) of resurrection is not compatible with the teachings of Scripture. Years ago, I wrote an appendix against hyperpreterism, now I could write an entire book (which if the Lord wills, I will eventually have the time and solitude to do just that). But take one argument, for starters:
In Acts 2:24-36, Peter proved David had not been resurrected. How so? By pointing out the fact that David’s body was still in his grave. Likewise, Peter proved Jesus HAD been raised up, left and empty grave, and had been seen alive by many witnesses.
Hyperpreterists claim that David was raised in 70 AD. So let’s use Peter’s test. Are the bodies of David and the rest of the ancients still in their graves? Yes. Then they aren’t resurrected, and hyperpreterism is false.
Having foreseen the resurrection of Jesus, David said, “My FLESH also will dwell securely” (Psalm 16:9), or as Peter quotes it, “My FLESH also will live in hope” (Acts 2:26). David’s FLESH could rest secure because he had foreseen the resurrection of Jesus, the proof of his (and our) future resurrection of the fleshly body, just as Paul teaches in 1 Cor. 15:20-23.
There is no dispute that the Pharisees of Jesus’ & Paul’s day believed in the resurrection of our physical bodies. This is important, because the Apostle Paul, while standing trial for the sake of the Gospel, proclaimed repeatedly that he had the same the belief in the resurrection as the Pharisees (Acts 23:6-10, 24:14-15, and 26:6-8).
Both Jesus and Paul used a “grain of wheat” as an illustration for the resurrection (John 12:24-25 & 1 Cor. 15:37). Guess who else used the “grain of wheat” to illustrate their teaching on the resurrection? Yup, the Pharisees. So it is no surprise the Saducees correctly understood Jesus’ belief in the resurrection to be that of the Pharisees, a physical resurrection body (Luke 20:27-39).
Now look, if Jesus and Paul taught a resurrection that was radically different from the popular belief of their day, does it make sense for them to use the same exact illustrations? Wouldn’t we expect them to go way out of their way to show that their understanding of the resurrection was vastly different from the Pharisees? Instead, we see just the opposite, with Paul repeatedly claiming they believed the same thing about the resurrection.
I’ve barely gotten started pointing out the scriptural problems with the 70 AD resurrection theory, but I think we can all see that it is already in, to use a technical theological term, “deep doo-doo.”
Jesus’ “coming” in Matthew 24 wasn’t His “return” to earth. It was His coming to the Ancient of Days to receive His kingdom (Dan 7:13 & Matt 16:27, 28). The 70AD judgment was from the hand of the Father in punishment for the deaths of the prophets and finally for their killing the Son (Matt 21). If There is not future physical resurrection, which is taught by historical Christianity, then wouldn’t that imply that God wasn’t able to sustain His people with the truth for 1900 years until Max King came to restore said truth.
Matt 24 was Christ’s ascension (coming) to the Ancient of Days (Father) not His descending to earth. If historical Christianity (ex. Church Fathers) were wrong on the physical bodily resurrection of believers at the end of history, then historical Christianity cannot be trusted with transferring the scripture to their future generations. And this would mean the whole debate between orthodox preterist and full preterist (hyperpreterist) is null and void since hyperpreterist want to base their argument on solo scripture and not on sola scriptura. Hyperpreterist begin their defense of their stance from the scripture; the very documents that Church has preserved through the providence of God, and full preterist (hyperpreterist) state that the historical church is wrong on its creeds of future physical bodily resurrection. Sola scriptura is based on the truth of scripture along with the the truths taught by historical Christianity. Martin Luther’s “sola scriptura” was based on the word of truth along with the ancient creeds (credo=creed=belief)). Full preterist (hyperpreterist) have developed their own creeds (beliefs) apart from the scripture as taught by historical Christianity.
I wouldn’t call myself a partial preterist nor a full preterist in eschatology, I think. The thing for me is that, while I can see a lot of the hermeneutic and arguments for the full preterist understanding of AD70, I am very concerned about some of the views among full preterists/emphases that don’t uphold Christ’s present humanity as well as his deity at the same time. (2John 1v3 indicates in the Greek Christ’s present “flesh”, I believe).
Second, I don’t see much evidence among some full preterists of upholding a biblical “imputed righteousness” as the title of free justification to God’s approval..It’s often some sort of NT Wright sort of (works) corporate justification. Without that, there’s no wine of good news and gospel faith, even with a perfect eschatological wineskin..Some also therefore have “atonement” finished at AD70, because they don’t have a sufficient substitionary sacrifice as the atonement at the heart of their faith, and because they see the Day of Atonement imagery implying that the atonement isn’t finished until the High Priest comes back. Rather than seeing that the consummation in life of the marriage (the “not yet” of the union that was already “now” prior to the wedding feast) is the bringing in of the full benefits of what Passover already wrought – and what First Fruits of Christ’s resurrection was the receipt of.
Jesus never diminished the physical to exclude it from redemption, neither in Is53’s language (with Matthew 8v17’s commentary on it), nor with his express will on physical healing on earth, nor the gifts of the Spirit after (whatever position one holds in their present form)..nor the Law, which, while made unto life (but as we know found unto death on account of the weakness of the flesh in Adam), expressed the good will of God concerning all things that pertain to our well being and humanity as physical humans.
And, if we believe God’s image in man “made in His image” is born in the physical in part, at all, then, consistent with the other things I mentioned, “redemption” redeems the physical, too – it redeems the marring of that image by the fall.
So, the “spiritual body” in 1Cor15 isn’t a “new in time”, new genus of body, any less than Christ has ceased to be fully man…It’s the redemption of the first body to new condition : It’s called “spiritual” because it’s new condition is a direct consequence of the redemption won on the cross, per Is53. Not because it’s shed the material. As to the practical degree if continuity/discontinuity, then we can surely only say that, whatever it looks like, it will be better, it will be fully glorified, *and* it will be human, *and* it will be recognizably *us* the individual.
That said, does scripture actually say that it will be raised from the actual atoms etc that constituted it on earth? Does it mean to connote that? I don’t know how it’s necessary to say that. And it’s said that we cycle through a whole body-worth of new cells every seven years..So which set of atoms? And what if those atoms, in some form, redistribute?
I don’t know that it’s impossible to say scripturally that what happened in AD70 is that the freedom from the curse of the fall (though already-death to the Law) was consummated as it pertains to the physical thusly- not that these are redeemed physical bodies, but that those dead have already received theirs, and those in Christ, already accepted, have had theirs come out from under the physical dimension that derives from that old spiritual curse, such that they get theirs when they die, and also get to live with the faith of God’s love and provision for their humanity right now, in a fuller, more “matured” sense.
A few thoughts.
*borne in the physical
it redeems *from the marring
*through already-death to the Law)
I also don’t see Scripture saying that bodies would be raised “from the actual atoms, etc. that constituted [them] on earth.” As far as the concerns you have regarding some full preterists, I imagine you’ve seen that there are a variety of views on a number of different subjects. By the way, how do you see II John 1:3 indicating “Christ’s present flesh”? I realize you said you see this in the Greek. This is how the verse reads in the NKJV: “Grace, mercy, and peace will be with you from God the Father and from the Lord Jesus Christ, the son of the Father, in truth and love.”
Yes, I saw some of what you’d written in the comments concerning that of the body, in the same vein. I have seen a variety of views, yes. 🙂
As to 2John 1v3, I totally got the wrong reference! 🙂 I meant 1Jn 4v2,3:
“By this you know the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is of God, and every spirit that does not confess that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is not of God. And this is the spirit of the Antichrist, which you have heard was coming, and is now already in the world.” (NKJV).
I don’t know Greek, but it seems to me from blueletterbible that the verb parses to connote a completed past action, as well as having participle mood..so I don’t believe it means to connote a state that terminated on being completed/realized, but a realized state that abides.
I’m not sure just how many translations thus have it “has come”, and how many have it “is come” (e.g. KJV) to try and express the meaning behind the combination of those two elements, I guess: I think John is certainly speaking with reference to a then-present reality in mind, post-ascension, established before.
I have just recently viewed preterism full after 38yrs. of ?ing the rapture view.
I was laying there last night and I thought ,partial or full.
I am fully saved.
I am fully married.
I am fully a father.
My faith is not partial.
I dont believe in a partial God.
I believe in the word of God fully.
I dont believe in a partial church.
I am not a partial Temple of God.
I am not partially given the Holy Spirit?
I believe God has fully done what He promised.
No partial preterism for me.
Lord wash not only my feet but ALL of me. Not partially.
Full Preterism or nothing.
I look forward to going to GOD. How good is that.