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Re: Rev. date

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  • mloftus955 <mloftus955@yahoo.com>
    [STEPHEN] Mark Loftus and list, Mark, you wrote recently that a or the fulfillment should come soon from the time of writing. But since the time of writing
    Message 1 of 5 , Mar 3, 2003
      [STEPHEN]
      Mark Loftus and list,
      Mark, you wrote recently that a or the fulfillment should come
      "soon" from the time of writing. But since the time of writing
      (or completion) is the question at hand, soon after unknown is
      questionable calculus. "Soon" to the addressees whenever
      addressed--so not determining date by itself. Using 70 AD
      destruction of the temple as a putative fulfillment is perhaps
      not particularly fulfilling, given the content of Rev as a whole,
      if it be any partial fulfillment at all. The author of Rev was
      perhaps less anti-Temple than your statement.

      [MARK] responds:
      The reason I believe in the early date is due to internal evidences.
      My use of those verses about the "soon" fulfillment to those being
      addressed was to make a point that there was an expectation made by
      those and other similar verses throughout the New Testament, not as
      proof of the early date of itself. However, 2,000 years past 95AD
      does not equal "soon". I do think that the events of AD 70 and the
      tribulation under Nero in the AD60's fit well with the events of
      Revelation. Then again, what type of fulfillment one is looking for
      is what often causes the disagreement. For example, if the
      fulfillment of Revelation 19 is to have Jesus riding a white horse
      with a literal sword coming out of His mouth, then we all can wait a
      million years with no fulfillment.

      As far as John being less anti Temple, you could well be right there,
      (I don't remember where I said otherwise). The disciples are
      pictured in Matthew 24 as admiring the beautiful buildings of the
      temple. Some 30 years later John would have a better idea what the
      temple represented.


      [STEPHEN]
      You appear to reject or at least diminish the importance of outside
      factors for dating and say "the eschatological view ought to be based
      on scripture." Surely you do not suggest that all who date to circa
      95, including me, fail to base their readings on scripture? And,
      further, by affirming--as do I--that there were seven existing
      churches at the time of their being addressed, so then you accept
      some outside criteria for dating, one of the criteria which, in my
      evaluation, makes a c. 95 dating for the completion of writing more
      likely. And in any case the temple destruction of 70 AD is itself an
      outside factor, and one used by some proponents of both datings.

      [MARK]responds:
      It appears to me that the main case for the late date was Eusebius
      quoting of Ireneaus. Though, he also quotes Clement who discusses the
      many things John did after writing Revelation, including traveling
      and riding horseback, running, all things which are pretty tough for
      a man in his 90's. Ireneaus is not necessarily reliable as a
      historian, and neither are the other early writers who relied upon
      his testimony. There are evidences of opposing traditions traceable
      to the early centuries. The title of the Syriac Version of the
      Apocalypse, is: The Revelation which was made to John the Evangelist
      by God in the Island Patmos, into which he was banished by Nero the
      Caesar.

      The external evidence is contradictory at best, you can't rely on men
      recounting history. That being said, the internal evidence is what I
      trust the most for the dating issues. John refers to the temple as
      though it were still standing in Rev.11, and to the Gentiles who were
      soon after the time of his writing to tread under foot the holy City
      and outward court. Never does John refer to its destruction having
      been accomplished. Such a momentous event would seem strange to
      overlook.

      Rev 3:9 Behold, I will make them of the synagogue of Satan, which say
      they are Jews, and are not, but do lie; behold, I will make them to
      come and worship before thy feet, and to know that I have loved thee.
      Rev 2:9 I know thy works, and tribulation, and poverty, (but thou art
      rich) and [I know] the blasphemy of them which say they are Jews, and
      are not, but [are] the synagogue of Satan.

      Verses like the above wouldn't have been written after 70 AD with the
      concept "those who say they are Jews and are not". The Jews, who
      hated the Christians, later suffered at the hands of the Romans all
      over the empire about 70 AD.

      John also endured the tribulation as he wrote. The tribulation for
      the early Christians occurred under Nero, there was nothing close to
      that under Domitian. Eusebius doesn't record the death of any
      christians under Domitian, just banishment. Rev.13:18 and the number
      of the beast was about Nero, the letters of the name
      "Neron Caesar" added up to 666 in the Hebrew. There are parallel
      themes in John with Peter and Jude, which were also written in the
      60s. Rev. 17:10 refers to the 6th king "who is now reigning", which
      had to be Nero and not Domitian.

      Mark Loftus
    • kymhsm
      Dear Mark, I would agree with all of your reasons for an early Revelation, only I would push it earlier still (mid 62), allowing about two and a half years for
      Message 2 of 5 , Mar 16, 2003
        Dear Mark,

        I would agree with all of your reasons for an early Revelation,
        only I would push it earlier still (mid 62), allowing about two and
        a half years for the Church to ready itself for the expected
        tribulation.

        You say that, "John also endured the tribulation as he wrote". He
        may have been suffering for the sake of the gospel but as he
        wrote *the* tribulation to which he referred was still a future
        expectation. You also say:

        <<<There are parallel themes in John with Peter and Jude,
        which were also written in the 60s. >>>

        By John do you mean the Revelation or, perhaps, 1 John? Either
        is fine by me. I have argued that 1 Peter, 1 John and Ephesians
        were the immediate responses of Peter, John and Paul,
        respectively, to the Revelation to encourage the believers in the
        face of the impending tribulation. They were followed by James
        (James - in Jerusalem - largely used 1 Peter and no later than
        September 62 – he was killed by the end of that month).
        Accompanying Ephesians and dealing with similar issues was
        Colossians.

        In 63 1 Timothy and Titus were written as Paul prepared the
        churches around the Aegean Sea and, in 64, 2 Timothy, 2 Peter
        and the Gospel of Mark, the latter two accompanying one
        another. Jude was written as a local (probably Jerusalem)
        response to 2 Peter just as James had used 1 Peter.

        Nero's persecutions probably began at the end (November /
        December) of 64.

        Sincerely,

        Kym Smith
        Adelaide
        South Australia
        khs@...
      • mloftus955
        [MARK] Hi Kym, I had meant Revelation in my remarks on the parallel themes. This is another way of
        Message 3 of 5 , Mar 29, 2003
          <By John do you mean the Revelation or, perhaps, 1 John?>

          [MARK] Hi Kym,
          I had meant Revelation in my remarks on the parallel themes.
          This is another way of sensing the time when books were written.
          I find this very interesting. John A.T. Robinson discusses some
          of these parallel themes in his book. (1) He cites many similar
          themes in Jude, 2nd Peter, and Revelation.

          I was reading in a couple of different sources, one of them was
          Sir Isaac Newton (2), who thought that the Revelation was quoted
          in the book of Hebrews and by Peter. If you could show that
          Revelation was quoted by New Testament authors, that would really
          make your case for Revelation being written even earlier, such as
          in 62 A.D. as you suggested. It was my understanding that the
          warning near the end of Revelation concerning not adding or
          subtracting anything from this book was an indication that there
          was now a completed canon as some interpreters suggest, but those
          verses refer to "this book".


          (1) "Redating The New Testament", John A.T. Robinson, pp. 227,228
          (2) "Observations upon the Apocalypse of St. John". Ch. 1.
          Introduction, concerning the time when the Apocalypse was written.
          (available at blueletterbible.org)


          Mark Loftus
          Lansdowne, PA
        • kymhsm
          Dear Mark,
          Message 4 of 5 , Mar 31, 2003
            Dear Mark,

            <<<If you could show that Revelation was quoted by New
            Testament authors, that would really make your case for
            Revelation being written even earlier, such as in 62 A.D. as you
            suggested.>>>

            This is precisely so. If Paul and Peter – assuming we accept
            their authorship of the letters in their names – died in 64 as per
            tradition, then for them to have quoted the Revelation means that
            it must have preceded that date.

            <<< John A.T. Robinson discusses some of these parallel
            themes in his book. (1) He cites many similar themes in Jude,
            2nd Peter, and Revelation.>>>

            While Robinson argued for the completion of the NT before AD
            70, if I remember rightly, he still places the Revelation last. The
            similar themes he notes do indicate that the books were written
            around the same time, but nothing more for certain. I believe the
            evidence is that many books indicate a familiarity with the
            Revelation. If I may, I will repeat my previous post but indicate
            some of the passages that show this familiarity.


            [[[I have argued that 1 Peter, 1 John and Ephesians were the
            immediate responses of Peter, John and Paul, respectively, to
            the Revelation to encourage the believers in the face of the
            impending tribulation.]]]

            I believe that John sought the opinion / verification / support of
            Paul and Peter and the three agreed to write (circular) letters to
            encourage the church in the face of what was expected, i.e. the
            tribulation preceding the return of Christ. Their letters were likely
            to have been distributed together, particularly around Asia.

            1 PETER – known by some as an epistle of suffering was
            addressed to Asia (and other places) and warns of a short
            period of suffering expected of the brotherhood throughout the
            world (5:9-10, c.f. 1:6; 4:12). The end of all things was at hand
            (4:7) thought Peter and the time of suffering would be terminated
            with their restoration to `eternal glory in Christ' (5:10). Peter wrote
            from Babylon (5:13). Babylon is used in an allegorical sense
            seven times in the NT, here and six times in the Revelation. In
            the context of the Revelation, Peter knew where he was when he
            wrote (i.e. Rome).

            1 JOHN – John knew they were living not in the last days but `the
            last hour' (1:18) and goes on there to speak of the antichrist and
            the many antichrists, the presence of the latter being a portend of
            the coming of the former. This was a time of great deception
            (4:1f)

            EPHESIANS – Historically known to have been addressed to
            both Ephesus and Laodicea, both churches of the Revelation
            (Rev 2-3) and probably to other places, it is most notable here in
            6:10ff, "For we are not contending against flesh and blood…"

            All three letters provide great exhortations in the major themes of
            the gospel, which must have been their primary intention.
            Interestingly, and some commentators mention this, there is a
            strong connection between Ephesians and 1 Peter. There are
            similar terms (e.g. the greeting of 1:3 in both; `before the
            foundation of the world' Eph 1:4; 1 Pet 1;20; c.f. Rev 13:8; 17:8)
            and, especially in the first two chapters, structural similarities.
            The reason for this, I believe, is that Paul sent Peter a draft – if
            not the full text – of Ephesians to help him in the writing of his
            letter. Silvanus (Paul's co-worker) would have taken it to Peter
            with that apostle's copy of the Revelation (1 Pet 5:12).

            [[[They were followed by James (James - in Jerusalem - largely
            used 1 Peter and no later than September 62 – he was killed by
            the end of that month). ]]]

            I suspect that copies of the three letters already mentioned were
            sent to Jerusalem with a copy of the Revelation. Given Peter's
            recognition as Apostle to the Jews it is not surprising to find that
            James borrowed heavily from his letter. The date of James'
            death is very significant.

            JAMES – Begins with the issue of suffering (1:2-4 and its value).
            He makes an interesting reference to the `crown of life' (1:12). It
            is mentioned elsewhere only in Rev 2:10. James understood
            that the coming of the Lord was at hand (5:7-8) and that the
            Judge was standing at the door (5:10; c.f. Rev 3:20 – `Behold I
            stand at the door and knock')

            [[[Accompanying Ephesians and dealing with similar issues was
            Colossians. ]]]

            COLOSSIANS – The content here is very similar to Ephesians, it
            almost certainly went out with the same courier (Tychicus – Eph
            6:21; Col 4:7) and was to be shared with Laodicea (4:16) just as
            they were to read the letter to Laodicea (probably the letter we
            know as Ephesians).

            The rest of my previous post follows, but I will not add comments
            to it unless you want them. What I have given above is only a
            brief account of the relationship between the letters themselves
            and the Revelation. I have addressed this more thoroughly in a
            lecture series which I hope, one day, to put together as a booklet.

            [[[In 63 1 Timothy and Titus were written as Paul prepared the
            churches around the Aegean Sea and, in 64, 2 Timothy, 2 Peter
            and the Gospel of Mark, the latter two accompanying one
            another. Jude was written as a local (probably Jerusalem)
            response to 2 Peter just as James had used 1 Peter.

            Nero's persecutions probably began at the end (November /
            December) of 64.]]]

            As you suggested, this is significant for the dating of the
            Revelation.

            Sincerely,

            Kym Smith
            Adelaide
            South Australia
            khs@...
          • Bob MacDonald
            This article Thomas B. SLATER Biblica 84 (2003) 252-258 may be of interest to the list http://www.bsw.org/?l=71841&a=Ani04.html Bob
            Message 5 of 5 , May 2, 2003
              This article Thomas B. SLATER Biblica 84 (2003) 252-258 may be of interest
              to the list

              http://www.bsw.org/?l=71841&a=Ani04.html

              Bob

              mailto::BobMacDonald@...
              + + + Victoria, B.C., Canada + + +

              Catch the foxes for us,
              the little foxes that make havoc of the vineyards,
              for our vineyards are in flower. (Song 2.15)
              http://bobmacdonald.gx.ca
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