70-1070AD Thousand Years, Millennium, Day of the Lord

70-1070 Satan imprisoned, Saints reign

70-1070AD "The Day"

The verses that follow show how "The Day" was eagerly anticipated throughout the period in which the New Testament was written, (30-70AD).  That is, throughout the 30-70AD period of the Apostles' generation, "The Day" was expected to begin very soon.  It is concluded, then, that "The Day" immediately follows the 30-70AD period of Last Days Tribulation in which the New Testament was written.  Understanding 2 Peter 3:8 to signify that "a day with the Lord is as a thousand years [with men] and a thousand years as a day" this "Day of the Lord" period is understood to be a thousand year period that begins around the time the Apostles disappearred, around 70AD and extends forward a thousand years (as men count them). So "The Day" is then placed in the 70-1070AD position in the Last Day timeline.  See also: 30-70AD: The Apostles expected Christ to Return in their lifetimes

Romans 13:12
The night is almost gone, and the day is at hand.

Revelation 22:16
"I, Jesus, have sent My angel to testify to you these things for the churches. I am the root and the offspring of David, the bright morning star."

In Revelation 22:16, Jesus refers to Himself as "the bright morning star.' In popular knowledge the morning star is that last, great light of the night that comes out to shine just before the Sun itself arrives and the DAY finally dawns. Jesus is calling Himself that last, great Prophet who precedes the arrival of God the Father Himself.

Matthew 7:22
"Many will say to Me on that DAY, 'Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in Your name, and in Your name cast out demons, and in Your name perform many miracles?'

Matthew 10:15
"Truly I say to you, it will be more tolerable for the land of Sodom and Gomorrah in the DAY of judgment, than for that city.

Matthew 11:22
"Nevertheless I say to you, it shall be more tolerable for Tyre and Sidon in the DAY of judgment, than for you.

Matthew 11:24
"Nevertheless I say to you that it shall be more tolerable for the land of Sodom in the DAY of judgment, than for you."

Matthew 12:36
"And I say to you, that every careless word that men shall speak, they shall render account for it in the DAY of judgment.

Matthew 24:36
"But of that DAY and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but the Father alone.

Matthew 26:29
"But I say to you, I will not drink of this fruit of the vine from now on until that DAY when I drink it new with you in My Father's kingdom."

Mark 13:32
"But of that DAY or hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but the Father alone.

Mark 14:25
"Truly I say to you, I shall never again drink of the fruit of the vine until that DAY when I drink it new in the kingdom of God."

Luke 10:12
"I say to you, it will be more tolerable in that DAY for Sodom, than for that city.

Luke 17:24
"For just as the lightning, when it flashes out of one part of the sky, shines to the other part of the sky, so will the Son of Man be in His DAY.

Luke 17:31
"On that DAY, let not the one who is on the housetop and whose goods are in the house go down to take them away; and likewise let not the one who is in the field turn back.

Luke 21:34
"Be on guard, that your hearts may not be weighted down with dissipation and drunkenness and the worries of life, and that DAY come on you suddenly like a trap;

John 6:39
"And this is the will of Him who sent Me, that of all that He has given Me I lose nothing, but raise it up on the last DAY.

John 6:40
"For this is the will of My Father, that everyone who beholds the Son and believes in Him, may have eternal life; and I Myself will raise him up on the last DAY."

John 6:44
"No one can come to Me, unless the Father who sent Me draws him; and I will raise him up on the last DAY.

John 6:54
"He who eats My flesh and drinks My blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last DAY.

* John 8:56
"Your father Abraham rejoiced to see My DAY, and he saw it and was glad."

John 11:24
Martha said to Him, "I know that he will rise again in the resurrection on the last DAY."

John 12:48
"He who rejects Me, and does not receive My sayings, has one who judges him; the word I spoke is what will judge him at the last DAY.

Acts 2:20
The sun shall be turned into darkness,
And the moon into blood,
Before the great and glorious DAY of the Lord shall come.

Acts 17:31
because He has fixed a DAY in which He will judge the world in righteousness through a Man whom He has appointed, having furnished proof to all men by raising Him from the dead."

Romans 2:5
But because of your stubbornness and unrepentant heart you are storing up wrath for yourself in the DAY of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God,

Romans 2:16
on the DAY when, according to my gospel, God will judge the secrets of men through Christ Jesus.

1 Corinthians 1:8
who shall also confirm you to the end, blameless in the DAY of our Lord Jesus Christ.

1 Corinthians 3:13
each man's work will become evident; for the DAY will show it, because it is to be revealed with fire; and the fire itself will test the quality of each man's work.

1 Corinthians 5:5
I have decided to deliver such a one to Satan for the destruction of his flesh, that his spirit may be saved in the DAY of the Lord Jesus.

2 Corinthians 1:14
just as you also partially did understand us, that we are your reason to be proud as you also are ours, in the DAY of our Lord Jesus.

Ephesians 4:30
And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the DAY of redemption.

Philippians 1:6
For I am confident of this very thing, that He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the DAY of Christ Jesus.

Philippians 1:10
so that you may approve the things that are excellent, in order to be sincere and blameless until the DAY of Christ;

Philippians 2:16
holding fast the word of life, so that in the DAY of Christ I may have cause to glory because I did not run in vain nor toil in vain.

2 Timothy 1:12
For this reason I also suffer these things, but I am not ashamed; for I know whom I have believed and I am convinced that He is able to guard what I have entrusted to Him until that DAY.

2 Timothy 1:18
the Lord grant to him to find mercy from the Lord on that DAY — and you know very well what services he rendered at Ephesus.

2 Timothy 4:8
in the future there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that DAY; and not only to me, but also to all who have loved His appearing.

Hebrews 10:25
not forsaking our own assembling together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another; and all the more, as you see the DAY drawing near.

1 Peter 2:12
Keep your behavior excellent among the Gentiles, so that in the thing in which they slander you as evildoers, they may on account of your good deeds, as they observe them, glorify God in the DAY of visitation.

1 Thessalonians 5:1-11
Now as to the times and the epochs, brethren, you have no need of anything to be written to you. 2 For you yourselves know full well that the DAY of the Lord will come just like a thief in the night. 3 While they are saying, "Peace and safety!" then destruction will come upon them suddenly like birth pangs upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape. 4 But you, brethren, are not in darkness, that the DAY should overtake you like a thief; 5 for you are all sons of light and sons of DAY. We are not of night nor of darkness; 6 so then let us not sleep as others do, but let us be alert and sober. 7 For those who sleep do their sleeping at night, and those who get drunk get drunk at night. 8 But since we are of the DAY, let us be sober, having put on the breastplate of faith and love, and as a helmet, the hope of salvation. 9 For God has not destined us for wrath, but for obtaining salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ, 10 who died for us, that whether we are awake or asleep, we may live together with Him. 11 Therefore encourage one another, and build up one another, just as you also are doing.

2 Thessalonians 1:10
when He comes to be glorified in His saints on that DAY, and to be marveled at among all who have believed — for our testimony to you was believed.

2 Thessalonians 2:1-12
Now we request you, brethren, with regard to the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and our gathering together to Him, 2 that you may not be quickly shaken from your composure or be disturbed either by a spirit or a message or a letter as if from us, to the effect that the DAY of the Lord has come. 3 Let no one in any way deceive you, for IT will not come unless the apostasy comes first, and the man of lawlessness is revealed, the son of destruction, 4 who opposes and exalts himself above every so-called god or object of worship, so that he takes his seat in the temple of God, displaying himself as being God. 5 Do you not remember that while I was still with you, I was telling you these things? 6 And you know what restrains him now, so that in his time he may be revealed. 7 For the mystery of lawlessness is already at work; only he who now restrains will do so until he is taken out of the way. 8 And then that lawless one will be revealed whom the Lord will slay with the breath of His mouth and bring to an end by the appearance of His coming; 9 that is, the one whose coming is in accord with the activity of Satan, with all power and signs and false wonders, 10 and with all the deception of wickedness for those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth so as to be saved. 11 And for this reason God will send upon them a deluding influence so that they might believe what is false, 12 in order that they all may be judged who did not believe the truth, but took pleasure in wickedness.

Luke 12:35-40
"Be dressed in readiness, and keep your lamps alight. 36 "And be like men who are waiting for their master when he returns from the wedding feast, so that they may immediately open the door to him when he comes and knocks. 37 "Blessed are those slaves whom the master shall find on the alert when he comes; truly I say to you, that he will gird himself to serve, and have them recline at the table, and will come up and wait on them. 38 "Whether he comes in the second watch, or even in the third, and finds them so, blessed are those slaves. 39 "And be sure of this, that if the head of the house had known at what hour the thief was coming, he would not have allowed his house to be broken into. 40 "You too, be ready; for the Son of Man is coming at an hour that you do not expect."

Psalms 90:4
For a THOUSAND YEARS in Thy sight are like yesterDAY when it passes by, or as a watch in the NIGHT.

Romans 13:12-13
The NIGHT is almost gone, and the DAY is at hand. Let us therefore lay aside the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light. 13 Let us behave properly as in the DAY, not in carousing and drunkenness, not in sexual promiscuity and sensuality, not in strife and jealousy.

2 Peter 2:9 and 2 Peter 3:2-18
the Lord knows how to rescue the godly from temptation, and to keep the unrighteous under punishment for the DAY of judgment, ... remember the words spoken beforehand by the holy prophets and the commandment of the Lord and Savior spoken by your apostles. 3 Know this first of all, that in the last days mockers will come with their mocking, following after their own lusts, 4 and saying, "Where is the promise of His coming? For ever since the fathers fell asleep, all continues just as it was from the beginning of creation." 5 For when they maintain this, it escapes their notice that by the word of God the heavens existed long ago and the earth was formed out of water and by water, 6 through which the world at that time was destroyed, being flooded with water. 7 But the present heavens and earth by His word are being reserved for fire, kept for the DAY of judgment and destruction of ungodly men. 8 But do not let this one fact escape your notice, beloved, that with the Lord one DAY is as a THOUSAND YEARS, and a THOUSAND YEARS as one DAY. 9 The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance. 10 But the DAY of the Lord will come like a thief, in which the heavens will pass away with a roar and the elements will be destroyed with intense heat, and the earth and its works will be burned up. 11 Since all these things are to be destroyed in this way, what sort of people ought you to be in holy conduct and godliness, 12 looking for and hastening the coming of the DAY of God, on account of which the heavens will be destroyed by burning, and the elements will melt with intense heat! 13 But according to His promise we are looking for new heavens and a new earth, in which righteousness dwells.14 Therefore, beloved, since you look for these things, be diligent to be found by Him in peace, spotless and blameless, 15 and regard the patience of our Lord to be salvation; just as also our beloved brother Paul, according to the wisdom given him, wrote to you, 16 as also in all his letters, speaking in them of these things, in which are some things hard to understand, which the untaught and unstable distort, as they do also the rest of the Scriptures, to their own destruction. 17 You therefore, beloved, knowing this beforehand, be on your guard lest, being carried away by the error of unprincipled men, you fall from your own steadfastness, 18 but grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To Him be the glory, both now and to the DAY of eternity. Amen.

Revelation 20:1-8
And I foresaw an angel coming down from heaven, having the key of the abyss and a great chain in his hand. 2 And he laid hold of the dragon, the serpent of old, who is the devil and Satan, and bound him for a THOUSAND YEARS, 3 and threw him into the abyss, and shut it and sealed it over him, so that he should not deceive the nations any longer, until the THOUSAND YEARS were completed; after these things he must be released for a short time.4 And I foresaw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given to them. And I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded because of the testimony of Jesus and because of the word of God, and those who had not worshiped the beast or his image, and had not received the mark upon their forehead and upon their hand; and they came to life and reigned with Christ for a THOUSAND YEARS. 5 The rest of the dead did not come to life until the THOUSAND YEARS were completed. This is the first resurrection. 6 Blessed and holy is the one who has a part in the first resurrection; over these the second death has no power, but they will be priests of God and of Christ and will reign with Him for a THOUSAND YEARS.7 And when the THOUSAND YEARS are completed, Satan will be released from his prison, 8 and will come out ...

1 John 4:17
By this, love is perfected with us, that we may have confidence in the DAY of judgment; because as He is, so also are we in this world.

Jude 6
And angels who did not keep their own domain, but abandoned their proper abode, He has kept in eternal bonds under darkness for the judgment of the great DAY.

Revelation 6:17
for the great DAY of their wrath has come; and who is able to stand?"

Revelation 16:14
for they are spirits of demons, performing signs, which go out to the kings of the whole world, to gather them together for the war of the great DAY of God, the Almighty.

Revelation 18:8
"For this reason in one DAY her plagues will come, pestilence and mourning and famine, and she will be burned up with fire; for the Lord God who judges her is strong.

See also: 30-70AD: The Apostles expected Christ to Return in their lifetimes

70-1070AD SATAN bound, cast & sealed into the Deep (Abyss, Bottomless Pit) for 1000 Years, Rev 20:1-3

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70-1070AD "The Last Day": Christ Returns, His Servants Raised to Reign

BROWN = Before the Nero-Beast-Tribulation, during the time of the Gospels

RED = During the Nero-Beast-Tribulation, just prior to the Lord's 70AD Return

BLUE = After the Nero-Beast-Tribulation, just after the Lord's 70AD Return

Matt 25:14-30

For the kingdom of heaven is] as a man traveling into a far country, [who] called his own servants, and delivered unto them his goods. And unto one he gave five talents, to another two, and to another one; to every man according to his several ability; and straightway took his journey. Then he that had received the five talents went and traded with the same, and made [them] other five talents. And likewise he that [had received] two, he also gained other two. But he that had received one went and digged in the earth, and hid his lord's money. AFTER A LONG TIME THE LORD OF THOSE SERVANTS COMETH, AND RECKONETH [JUDGETH] WITH THEM. And so he that had received five talents came and brought other five talents, saying, Lord, thou deliveredst unto me five talents: behold, I have gained beside them five talents more. His lord said unto him, Well done, [thou] good and faithful servant: THOU HAST BEEN FAITHFUL OVER A FEW THINGS, I WILL MAKE THEE [REIGN] RULER OVER MANY THINGS: enter thou into the joy of thy lord.

He also that had received two talents came and said, Lord, thou deliveredst unto me two talents: behold, I have gained two other talents beside them. His lord said unto him, Well done, good and faithful servant; THOU HAST BEEN FAITHFUL OVER A FEW THINGS, I WILL MAKE THEE [REIGN] RULER OVER MANY THINGS: enter thou into the joy of thy lord. ...

OBSERVATION:

Notice how THE SERVANTS ARE NOT MADE RULERS OVER MANY THINGS UNTIL AFTER THEIR LORD RETURNS.

Now WHEN DOES PRETERISM SAY THAT THE LORD RETURNED? 70AD, NO?

So then, WHEN WERE CHRIST'S DISCIPLES MADE RULERS WITH CHRIST? NOT UNTIL AFTER THEIR LORD RETURNED IN 70AD.

Let's look at similar parable:

Luke 19:11-19 (circa AD 30, just before entering Jerusalem on colt, ~ 1 week prior to the Crucifixion)

11 And while they were listening to these things, He went on to tell a parable, because He was near Jerusalem, and they supposed that the kingdom of God was going to appear immediately. 12 He said therefore, "A certain nobleman went to a distant country TO RECEIVE A KINGDOM FOR HIMSELF, and THEN RETURN. 13 "And he called ten of his slaves, and gave them ten minas, and said to them, 'Do business with this UNTIL I COME BACK.' 14 "But his citizens hated him, and sent a delegation after him, saying, 'We do not want this man to reign over us.' 15 "And it came about that WHEN HE RETURNED, AFTER RECEIVING HIS KINGDOM, he ordered that these slaves, to whom he had given the money, be called to him in order that he might know what business they had done. 16 "And the first appeared, saying, 'Master, your mina has made ten minas more.' 17 "And he said to him, 'Well done, good slave, because you have been faithful in a very little thing, BE IN AUTHORITY OVER TEN CITIES.' 18 "And the second came, saying, 'Your mina, master, has made five minas.' 19 "And he said to him also, 'And you are to BE OVER FIVE CITIES.'
NASB

LESSON:

You don't get a kingdom without a king, and you don't reign with Christ 'til Christ Returns with His Kingdom to reign.

See how this all fits in with Rev 20:1-10's mentioning of Christ's faithful being made rulers at the beginning of "Thousand Years"

Revelation 20:4-6 (penned circa 62-65AD at beginning of Tribulation to encourage rejection of the Beast & his mark)
4 And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given to them. And I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded because of the testimony of Jesus and because of the word of God, and those who had not worshiped the Beast or his image, and had not received the mark upon their forehead and upon their hand; and they came to life and reigned with Christ for a thousand years. 5 The rest of the dead did not come to life until the thousand years were completed. This is the first resurrection. 6 Blessed and holy is the one who has a part in the first resurrection; over these the second death has no power, but they will [future to 62AD] be priests of God and of Christ and will [future to 62AD] reign with Him for a thousand years.

We see here in the vision Jesus gave that those who had been beheaded for the Gospel's sake and martyred for having refused to worship the Beast (Nero) or his image, refused to receive the Beast's (Nero's) mark upon their foreheads or hands, were to be brought to life (John 6:54) and made rulers (Mat 25:19-23 and Luke 19:12-19) at Christ's 70AD Return on "The Last Day" of the Old Covenant system. Christ's 70AD Return marks the resurrection of those who hath eternal life (John 6:54) and the beginning of His reign with faithful servants (Mat 25:19-23 and Luke 19:12-19). "The Last Day" of the Old Testament system at 70AD was the first day of the New Testament reign, the first day of the 1st Resurrection, the first day of Rev 20:1-10's "Thousand Years."

John 6:54 (circa 28AD)

Whoso eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, HATH ETERNAL LIFE; AND I WILL RAISE HIM UP AT THE LAST DAY. ~Jesus

Notice how those who "hath (present tense) eternal life" were to be "raised up (resurrected) at the Last Day" ?

"Finally the final authority is Jesus Christ Himself. It is His words that we can not add to concerning the fulfillment of all these things." ~preteristartist

Again, WHEN DOES PRETERISM CALCULATE "THE LAST DAY" TO HAVE BEEN? 70AD, RIGHT?

Be honest with yourself, now.

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And this is love, that we walk after Christ's commandments. ~2 John 6

70-1070AD Blessed & Holy Ones resurrected at start of Last Day, Rest of Dead resurrected at its end

Since the 30-70AD age is likened to the 40-year Exodus,
the 70-1070AD Millennium is likened to the age of Possessing the Promised Land during Joshua, Judges & Kings.


Beginning with the Lord's Return around 70AD:

John 6:39-40, John 6:44, John 6:53-54 ~preached around 29AD by Jesus Christ
39 And this is the Father's will which hath sent Me, that of all which He hath given Me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up again at the Last Day.
40 And this is the will of Him that sent Me, that every one which seeth the Son, and believeth on Him, may have everlasting life: and I will raise him up at the Last Day.
44 No man can come to Me, except the Father which hath sent Me draw him: and I will raise him up at the Last Day.
53 Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you.
54 Whoso eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, hath eternal life; and I will raise him up at the Last Day.

1 Thessalonians 4:16 ~penned around 51AD by Christ's Apostle Paul to the Christians at Thessalonica
For the Lord himself shall [future, after 51AD] descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the Dead in Christ shall [future, after 51AD] RISE FIRST:

Revelation 20:4-6
And I foresaw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they LIVED and reigned with Christ a thousand years. 5 (But THE REST OF THE DEAD lived not again until the thousand years were finished). This is the FIRST RESURRECTION. 6 Blessed and holy is he that hath part in the FIRST RESURRECTION: on such the second death hath no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with him a thousand years.

2 Peter 3:8
8 But, beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that ONE DAY IS WITH THE LORD AS A THOUSAND YEARS, and a thousand years as one day.

The Dead in Christ = the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands.
The Rest of the Dead = the souls of everyone else who had died.

Christ raised up first HIS MARTYRS from the Nero-Beast Tribulation (the Dead in Christ) at the start of the Last Day.
And THE REST OF THE DEAD were raised up at the end of the Last Day to their sentence of Judgment.

70-1070AD "1000 Years", New Heavens, New Earth & New Jerusalem began at Old Jerusalem's end

Or we could say it this way:
New Heavens, New Earth & New Jerusalem did NOT Begin AFTER "The 1,000 Years " Millennium Ends.
"The 1,000 Years" is simply the first thousand years of the New Heavens, New Earth & New Jerusalem.
And these all began at Christ's Return, marked in history by the destruction of Old Covenant Jerusalem in 70AD.
MC and MB are two different persons within two different internet communities, (one gated, one not). But they both approach the matter much the same way. Notice how this approach openly contradicts itself, bringing self-refutation:
"Even though chapter 20
comes after chapter 18, Revelation 20 is a
recapitulation of this same event. It is not to be
looked at in a chronological time frame!
"
~MC, May 30

"But, heaven and earth would be
destroyed at the end of the millennium according to
Revelation 21:1f. This for me places the time of
Babylon's judgment at the end of the millennium." ~MC, June 26
Let's look at Rev 21:1 "And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea."
MC misses: there is nothing here to indicate that Rev 21:1 happens AFTER the 1,000 year Millennium ends; nothing except that Rev 21 comes after Rev 20.
"I dont think that Revelation 20 is sequential " ~MB, June 3
"...The New Jerusalem comes after the 1000 years. ..." ~MB, June 5
Evidently, both MC and MB, are thrown off by the (uninspired) insertion of chapter&verse demarcations into John's Revelation and so they conclude that Revelation 21 describes things that are sequential to Revelation 20: that is, they conclude that New Heavens, Earth & Jerusalem's beginning is sequential to the 1,000 year Millennium's ending.
Its this very mental blockage, I believe, that holds back a few preterist Christians from a credible handling of the brief passage mentioning the 1,000 year Millennium.
All one really has to do is forget about the chapter&verse markings between Rev 18 and 22 to find that:
EACH "AND I SAW ..." FOLLOWING THE FALL OF BABYLON (Rev 18:2) NARRATES YET ANOTHER MINI-VISION DETAILING MORE DIRECT CONSEQUENCES OF BABYLON'S FALL
Its listing the reasons for all the rejoicing in Heaven over Babylon's Fall (Rev 19:1-2...). The 1,000 year Millennium found only in Rev 20:1-10 is simply one immediate consequence among many of Babylon's Fall -each of which having their beginning with Babylon's End. This is why preterist Christians get so excited over Old Covenant Jerusalem's 70ad destruction:
Bablyon's Ending was the the Beginning of all those blessings envisioned thereafter, each introduced with John saying, "I SAW..."
Rev 20:1-10's events, Millennium of 1,000 years etc, is just one such blessing listed. All the other "I saw" descriptive mini-visions also begin at Babylon's 70ad Fall, including the appearance of the New Heavens, New Earth & New Jerusalem, (regardless of what one understands about Rev 20:1-10).
At Bablyon's Fall circa 70ad, each of these events have their beginning:
*Babylon's judgment and plagues, losses of merchandising, etc., ~Rev 18: 1-24
*Rejoicing in Heaven over Babylon's Fall, Marriage Supper of the Lamb ~Rev 19:1-9
*Jesus & the Saints begin their conquest & judgment of the nations ~Rev 19:11-16
*Fowls invited to eat the carcasses of the slain armies ~Rev 19:17-18
*The Beast & False Prophet conquered, then cast into Lake of Fire; fowls eating the flesh of their armies ~Rev 19:20-21
*The Devil bound & cast into the abyss below for 1,000 years, (beneath everyone's feet - Romans 16:20) ~Rev 20:1-3
*1,000 years begin, Resurrection of saintly martyrs who resisted Beast during Tribulation, 1st of 2 resurrections mentioned ~Rev 20:4-6
.....[Details also given about events occuring at the END of the 1,000 years ~Rev 20:7-10]
.....[......a) Resurrection of "the rest of the dead," ie, of everyone but the saintly martyrs who resisted the Beast during the Tribulation]
.....[......b) Satan's brief release and subsequent judgment into the Lake of Fire where the Beast & False Prophet had been cast]
*Commencement of Great White Throne Judgement ~Rev 20:11-15
*Arrival of New Heavens & New Earth ~Rev 21:1
*Arrival of New Jerusalem ~Rev 21:2-Rev 22:5
The Text of Revelation itself suggests that the 1,000 years follow the Fall of Babylon - listed among the list of direct consequences thereof and as one of Heaven's various reasons for rejoicing over Babylon's Fall. It has been shown by many capable commentators that Revelation's "Babylon" = Old Covenant Jerusalem. Presently popular attempts, (among some preterists), to stuff the "The Tribulation"+ "The 1,000 Years"+"The Little Season of Satan's Release" into the 30-70A.D. timeframe preceeding Babylon's Fall will never work alongside the preterist insistence that "time statements" be taken seriously, (not to mention "expectation statements"). This awkward attempt only serves to undercut preterist credibility, leaving us all exposed to the rightful charge of hypocrisy regarding our interpretation principles that deduce the Lord's Accomplished Return in the first place.
BONUS:
I cannot get away from Hebrews 12:22-24 and Hebrews 12:28's description of The Heavenly Jerusalem, (presumably equal to the New Jerusalem), as a reality being received at the time of Hebrews pre-70AD publication date. At any rate, the New Jerusalem's arrival is associated with the beginning of "The Day of the Lord" aka "The 1,000 Years." The New Jerusalem's arrival is also associated with old Jerusalem/Babylon's departure or "Fall." And old Jerusalem/Babylon's Fall is associated with the beginning of "The 1,000 Years" aka "The Day of the Lord," as well. Therefore, the New Jerusalem was arriving as the old Jerusalem was departing as 70A.D. approached, all this as "The Day of the Lord" period of history began.

70-1070AD Twenty-five Answers about "The Millennium" = "The 1,000 Years" = "The Day of the Lord"

The wording of my responses are intended to show that if anyone takes the "1000 years" to be any span of actual time at all, he must -by his own logic- also give place to my view that defines that span of time as an actual 1000 years of human history. (It seems easy enough to demonstrate the unreasonableness of the "1000 years" referring to a single instant since the period during which Satan is imprisioned in the Abyss while the Saints Reign: it must encompass some worthy span of actual time to have any meaning whatsoever, to have been worth so long a wait to arrive). I continue to find it attractive to entertain the idea that the "1000 years," like the rest of Rev 18-22, is directly associated with the Fall of Babylon aka Jerusalem in A.D. 70. Consequently, the "1000 Years" have their beginning circa Babylon/Jerusalem’s A.D. 70 Fall as do all the other events that Revelation 18-22 envisions appearing. If 2 Peter 3:8 can be taken to hint that "The Day of the Lord" = "The 1,000 Years" of Rev 20, then it is understood that "The 1000 years" is the amount of of actual amount of time "The Day of the Lord" encompasses.
 
2 Peter 3:8
8 But do not let this one fact escape your notice, beloved, that
with the Lord one day is as a thousand years , and a thousand years as one day.
NASB
 
2 Peter 3:8
8 But do not let this one hint get by you, my friend, that
"The Day of the Lord" = "The 1,000 Years," and 1,000 years span "The Day."
 
.
2 Peter 3:8
8 But do not let this one clue get by you, buddy, that:
“With the Lord: '1 Day' = 1000 years, 1000 years = '1 Day.'”
 
 
1. The millennium is a literal 1,000 years. True or False?
 
2. The millennium represents a defined period of time of literal numerical value. True or False?
 
3. The millennium begins at Jerusalem’s fall in 70 A.D., hence at Christ’s A.D. 70 return? True or False?
 
4. The millennium begins after the marriage supper of the lamb, i.e. after the wedding and continues for 1,000 years. True or False?
 
5. The millennium begins when the tribulation ends and continues for 1000 literal years. True or False?
 
6. Satan is cast into the lake of fire, before or at the arrival of the New Heavens and Earth. True or False?
 
7. Satan is cast into the lake of fire after the arrival of the New Heavens and Earth. True or False?
.
8. The little season follows the 1,000 years binding of Satan. True or False?
 
9. The little season ends when Satan is cast into the lake of fire. True or False?
 
10. Revelation describes events shortly to “come to pass,” True or False?
 
11. The Law and the Prophets were fulfilled in 70 A.D. True or False?
 
12. The Law and the Prophets are yet being fulfilled after A.D. 70 up to the present or some post 70 (Destruction of Jerusalem) time frame. True or False?
 
13. Death and Hades are destroyed when the Law is fulfilled. True or False?
 
14. Death and Hades are destroyed when they are cast into the lake of fire?
 
15. The destruction of Satan is prophesied in the law and the prophets. True or False?
 
16. The vindication or avenging of the “beheaded” martyrs is fulfilled in 70 A.D. True or False?
 
17. The saints live, become kings and priests, at or after before 70 A.D., True or False?
 
18. The New Jerusalem arrives before the millennium of 1,000 years. True or False?
 
19. The New Jerusalem arrives after the millennium of 1,000 years. True or False?
 
20. The 2nd resurrection occurs after the millennium of 1,000 years?
 
21. The 2nd resurrection is the fulfillment of the Law and the Prophets. True or False?
 
22. The reigning of the martyrs of Revelation 6:9,10 and Rev. 20 are the fulfillment of the law and the prophets? True or False?
 
23. The second resurrection is yet future. True or False?
 
 
24. The second resurrection is past. True or False?
 
 
25. Finally, can you send me a quick list of everything you view as literal in Revelation 20:1-3?
 
CONCLUSION:
I challenge anyone interested in Covenant Eschatology, (aka Full Preterism, Hyper-Preterism, TransmillennialismTM, 30-70AD Millennium), to answer these 25 Questions about the Millennium as forthrightly and thoroughly and consistenly done here. Its become more obvious than ever to me that Covenant Eschatology (30-70AD Millennium) “cherry picks” those things it wants to see as figurative or “literal,” right down to the time statements like Rev 4:1’s “Come up here, and I will show you what must take place after these things” described and foretold in Rev 1-3. And after much critical argumentation over "time Texts" to deduce that Jesus came back around 70AD, 30-70AD Millennialism insists upon its figurative and questionably short version of the long anticipated “The 1,000 Years” reign with Christ of the Resurrected Saints of Revelation 20:4-6 : thereby forfeiting whatever credibility borrowed from Historical Preterism. The reality of it all is, the Covenant Eschatology (Full Preterism, 30-70AD Millennium) carefully cherry picks the application of just about every one of its own Bible interpretation principles. Its needs to in order to survive, it's own internal inconsistencies drive it to consume itself, its followers biting and devouring one another as some succumb to its innate attaction to Universalism and others struggle them to resist.

Matt 15:13-14 "Every plant that my heavenly Father has not planted will be pulled up by the roots. 14 Leave them; they are blind guides. If a blind man leads a blind man, both will fall into a pit." NIV
 
 
2 Peter 3:8
8 But do not let this one fact escape your notice, beloved, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years , and a thousand years as one day.
NASB
 
2 Peter 3:8
8 But do not let this one hint get by you, my friend, that "The Day of the Lord" = "The 1,000 Years," and 1,000 years span "The Day."
 
 

70-1070AD Twenty-five Questions About The Millennium

1. The millennium is a literal 1,000 years. True or False?
2. The millennium represents a defined period of time of literal numerical value. True or False?
3. The millennium begins after Jerusalem’s fall in 70 A.D., hence after Christ’s A.D. 70 return? True or False?
4. The millennium begins after the marriage supper of the lamb, i.e. after the wedding and continues for 1,000 years. True or False?
5. The millennium begins after the tribulation ends and continues for 1000 literal years. True or False.
6. Satan is cast into the lake of fire, before or at the arrival of the New Heavens and Earth. True or False.
7. Satan is cast into the lake of fire after the arrival of the New Heavens and Earth. True or False.
8. The little season follows the 1,000 years binding of Satan. True or False.
9. The little season ends before Satan is cast into the lake of fire. True or False.
10. Revelation describes events shortly to “come to pass,” True or False.
11. The Law and the Prophets were fulfilled in 70 A.D. True or False.
12. The Law and the Prophets are yet being fulfilled after A.D. 70 up to the present or some post 70 (Destr. Of Jer) time frame. True or False.
13. Death and Hades are destroyed when the Law is fulfilled. True or False?
14. Death and Hades are destroyed when they are cast into the lake of fire? True of False?
15. The destruction of Satan is prophesied in the law and the prophets. True or False?
16. The vindication or avenging of the “beheaded” martyrs is fulfilled in 70 A.D. True or False?
17. The saints live, become kings and priests, at or after before 70 A.D., True or False.
18. The New Jerusalem arrives before the millennium of 1,000 years. True or False.
19. The New Jerusalem arrives after the millennium of 1,000 years. True or False.
20. The 2nd resurrection occurs after the millennium of 1,000 years.
21. The 2nd resurrection is the fulfillment of the Law and the Prophets. True or False.
22. The reigning of the martyrs of Revelation 6:9,10 and Rev. 20 are the fulfillment of the law and the prophets? True or False?
23. The second resurrection is yet future. True or False?
24. The second resurrection is past. True or False?
25. Finally, can you list of everything you view as literal in Revelation 20:1-3?

70-1070AD Day of Judgment = 1 Day with Lord = 1000 Years = Day of the Lord = Day of God -- 2 Peter 3:2-14

2 Peter 3:2-14 ~ (written around 63AD, about the same time as Revelation, when those first Christians wondered at its meaning)
You should remember the words spoken beforehand by the holy prophets and the commandment of the Lord and Savior spoken by your apostles. 3 Know this first of all, that in the last days mockers will come with their mocking, following after their own lusts, 4 and saying, "Where is the promise of His coming? ... the present heavens and earth by His word are being reserved for fire, kept for THE DAY OF JUDGMENT and destruction of ungodly men.

8 But do not let this one fact escape your notice, beloved, that WITH THE LORD ONE DAY IS AS A THOUSAND YEARS, AND A THOUSAND YEARS AS ONE DAY. 9 The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance. 10 But THE DAY OF THE LORD will come like a thief, in which the heavens will pass away with a roar and the elements will be destroyed with intense heat, and the earth and its works will be burned up. 11 Since all these things are to be destroyed in this way, what sort of people ought you to be in holy conduct and godliness, 12 looking for and hastening the coming of THE DAY OF GOD, on account of which the heavens will be destroyed by burning, and the elements will melt with intense heat! 13 But according to His promise we are looking for new heavens and a new earth, in which righteousness dwells.

14 Therefore, beloved, since you look for these things, be diligent to be found by Him in peace, spotless and blameless, 15 and regard the patience of our Lord to be salvation;
NASB

DAY OF JUDGMENT = 1 DAY WITH THE LORD = 1000 YEARS = 1 DAY = DAY OF THE LORD = DAY OF GOD

Revelation 20:1-10
And I saw an angel coming down from heaven, having the key of the abyss and a great chain in his hand. 2 And he laid hold of the dragon, the serpent of old, who is the devil and Satan, and bound him for a THOUSAND YEARS, 3 and threw him into the abyss, and shut it and sealed it over him, so that he should not deceive the nations any longer, until the THOUSAND YEARS were completed; after these things he must be released for a short time.

4 And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given to them. And I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded because of the testimony of Jesus and because of the word of God, and those who had not worshiped the beast or his image, and had not received the mark upon their forehead and upon their hand; and they came to life and reigned with Christ for a THOUSAND YEARS. 5 The rest of the dead did not come to life until the thousand years were completed. This is the first resurrection. 6 Blessed and holy is the one who has a part in the first resurrection; over these the second death has no power, but they will be priests of God and of Christ and will reign with Him for a THOUSAND YEARS.

7 And when the THOUSAND YEARS are completed, Satan will be released from his prison, 8 and will come out to deceive the nations which are in the four corners of the earth, Gog and Magog, to gather them together for the war; the number of them is like the sand of the seashore. 9 And they came up on the broad plain of the earth and surrounded the camp of the saints and the beloved city, and fire came down from heaven and devoured them. 10 And the devil who deceived them was thrown into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are also; and they will be tormented day and night forever and ever.
NASB


The problem I see here is that non-preterist folk are so consentrated on the 1000 year time frame that they miss a simple phrase that put this verse in a symbolic frame work. "as is" is not to be taken literal.
It's a comparison showing God's patience.
Not that he's literally going to hang around for 1000 years for his final judgement.
If the 1000 in Revelations is to be taken literal and the starting piont is A.D.70, then the final judgement, (or 3rd appearing), has already happened.
This make no sense whatsoever.


I strongly recommend Parousia: The New Testament Doctrine of Our Lord's Second Coming by J. Stuart Russell

Russell visits virtually every Bible passage dealing with the Lord's Second Coming; many, many of which refer directly to the long anticipated "Day of the Lord" / "Day of God" / "Day of Judgment" / "The Last Day" / "The Lord's Day."

I also recommend one consider again the article here: J.S. Russells Position on the Millennium, the Neglected Third Way of Preterism

70-1070AD Last Day-MILLENNIUM = Middle Age(s) = Sabbath Day of the Lord = the Last Day

THIS VIEW IS BEING RECONSIDERED IN THE LIGHT OF EQUATING
"THE DAY OF THE LORD" WITH "THE 1,000 YEARS" OF REV 20:1-10
AS 2 PETER 3:8 SEEMS TO HINT TOWARD.
I PLAN TO UPDATE SOME OF ITS WORDING.
I am not completely satisfied with my efforts here and post this in the hope of cajoling along further study by others more qualified. However, this remains the most attractive approach to me concerning Revelation 20:1-10's "1,000 Years." While seriously entertaining the view of my Covenant Eschatology/Modern Preterist critics, it dawned upon me afresh the idea that Revelation 20:1-10's "1,000 Years" may be just another way of saying "The Day of the Lord" per 2 Peter 3:8 and Ps 90:4. And that those very same verses suggest with equal force that "The Day of the Lord" is an actual 1,000 years of human history. Which brings me right back to consider the approach below. Does not all eschatology ultimately revolve about "The Day of the Lord" ? ~jwr
I continue to find it attractive to entertain the idea that "The 1,000 Years," like the rest of Rev 18-22, is directly associated with the Fall of Babylon aka Jerusalem in A.D. 70. Consequently, "The 1,000 Years" have their beginning circa Babylon/Jerusalem’s A.D. 70 Fall alongside all the other events that Revelation 18-22 envision. If 2 Peter 3:8 can be taken to hint that "The Day of the Lord" = "The 1,000 Years" of Rev 20, then it also is taken to mean that "The 1,000 Years" is the amount of of actual time "The Day of the Lord" encompasses.
2 Peter 3:8
8 But do not let this one fact escape your notice, beloved, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years , and a thousand years as one day.
NASB
This can also be expressed in this wise:
But do not let this one hint get by you, my friend, that "The Day of the Lord" = "The 1,000 Years," and a 1,000 years span the "Day."
.
The book of Revelation is regarded as series of visions. In the passages following The Fall of Babylon the Great, each "THEN I SAW" and "THEN I HEARD" is a mini-vision describing a DIRECT CONSEQUENCE OF BABYLON'S FALL, ie. the destruction of ancient, Old Covenant Jerusalem in 70ad. These are the reason why there is so much celebration & rejoicing over Babylon's Fall.
.
Revelation 18:1-2-3 After this I saw another angel coming down from heaven. He had great authority, and the earth was illuminated by his splendor. 2 With a mighty voice he shouted:
"Fallen! Fallen is Babylon the Great! " ... [the immediate consequences of Babylon's Fall are hereafter described]
.
Revelation 18:4-24 "Then I heard ..."[more immediate consequences of Babylon's Fall described from another perspective...]
.
Revelation 19:1-10 "After this I heard ... " [still more immediate consequences of Babylon's Fall described from still another view point...]
.
Revelation 19:11-21 "I saw ..."[yet more immediate consequences of Babylon's Fall are described...]
.
Revelation 20:1-10 [and once again, more of the consequential aftermath of the Fall of Babylon is detailed below.... The Millennium = The first 1,000 years of the New Heavens & New Earth which are described in greater detail in yet more "And I saw" mini-visions hereafter...]
20:1 And I saw an angel coming down out of heaven, having the key to the Abyss and holding in his hand a great chain. 2 He seized the dragon, that ancient serpent, who is the devil, or Satan, and bound him for a thousand years. 3 He threw him into the Abyss, and locked and sealed it over him, to keep him from deceiving the nations anymore until the thousand years were ended. After that, he must be set free for a short time.
.
4 I saw [consequences of Babylon's Fall] thrones on which were seated those who had been given authority to judge.
.
And I saw [consequences of Babylon's Fall]the souls of those who had been beheaded because of their testimony for Jesus and because of the word of God. They had not worshiped the beast or his image and had not received his mark on their foreheads or their hands. They came to life and reigned with Christ a thousand years. 5(The rest of the dead did not come to life until the thousand years were ended.) This is the first resurrection. 6 Blessed and holy are those who have part in the first resurrection. The second death has no power over them, but they will be priests of God and of Christ and will reign with him for a thousand years. 7 When the thousand years are over, Satan will be released from his prison 8 and will go out to deceive the nations in the four corners of the earth — Gog and Magog — to gather them for battle. In number they are like the sand on the seashore. 9 They marched across the breadth of the earth and surrounded the camp of God's people, The City He loves [i.e.-the hitherto described New Jerusalem]. BUT FIRE CAME DOWN FROM HEAVEN AND DEVOURED them. 10 And the devil, who deceived them, was thrown into the lake of burning sulfur, where the beast and the false prophet had been thrown. They will be tormented day and night for ever and ever.
.
Revelation 20:11-15 Then I saw [consequences of Babylon's Fall]a great white throne and Him who sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away. And there was found no place for them.
.
12 And I saw [consequences of Babylon's Fall]the dead, small and great, standing before God, and books were opened. And another book was opened, which is the Book of Life. And the dead were judged according to their works, by the things which were written in the books.13 The sea gave up the dead who were in it, and Death and Hades delivered up the dead who were in them. And they were judged, each one according to his works. 4 Then Death and Hades were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death.15 And anyone not found written in the Book of Life was cast into the lake of fire.
.
Revelation 21:1-3 - Rev. 22:5 Now I saw [consequences of Babylon's Fall]a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away. Also there was no more sea.
.
2 Then I, John, saw [consequences of Babylon's Fall]the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.3 And I heard a loud voice from heaven saying, "Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them, and they shall be His people. God Himself will be with them and be their God. ...
NKJV



OBSERVATIONS

1) The Text of Revelation itself makes abundantly obvious that the 1,000 years follow the Fall of Babylon - described as being one of its direct consequences. If we cannot be shown to grasp such straightforward communication as that, then we needlessly forfeit much credibility on any other timing issue, including that of the Lord's Return. It has been shown by many capable commentators that Revelation's "Babylon" = Old Covenant Jerusalem. Presently popular attempts, (among some preterists), to stuff the 1,000+ years that follow the Fall of Babylon (aka ancient Jerusalem) into the 40 years that precede it will never work alongside the preterist insistence that "time statements" be taken seriously, (not to mention the "expectation statements" and faithfulness to the actual Text). This awkward attempt only serves to undercut preterist credibility, leaving us all exposed to the rightful charge of hypocrisy regarding our stance about "time statements."
.
2) Someone might say, "I think the 1,000 years are just a metaphor." Regardless of whether one considers the 1,000 years as a metaphor or not, it follows the destruction of Jerusalem, being a divinely ordained direct consequence thereof. Would one dare to dismiss the prophecies regarding the life & death of Jesus Christ as "just a metaphor?" What of the prophecies regarding the ministry of John the Baptist? Did not God deliver fulfillments that entered the history books? Fulfillments that men could handle and know? Fulfillments that impacted the lives of earthbound men, being witnessed by them? Whatever metaphors are employed in Revelation, they have impact of historic proportions, recognisable in history itself. "Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God." They shall at least see God's hand in history.
Someone else may suggest, "We need to look at the millennium from a heavenly rather than an earthly perspective." Perhaps, but why not do both? Who says we can only view things from one side? Since these words were delivered by our Heavenly Father to us living upon the Earth, and that He has come and made his dwelling among men, these words will definitely have components that are detectable by earthbound men, as well. And if we demand these fulfillments be seen from God's perspective, remember again, He has made His home in and among us: "Behold, the dwelling of God is with men!" (Rev 21:3). We are the Temple of God. He dwells within us. He looks out there through our eyes, albeit, with perfect understanding. But that is an understanding He wishes us to attain. "Be ye perfect therefore, ... "
Another may rush over my words here and then twist, exaggerate, and misunderstand saying, "I don't think Revelation 20 is sequential." The same will go on to assert that the New Heavens, New Earth, & New Jerusalem appear AFTER the 1,000 years are ended. Why should anyone bother to lift a typing finger to refute him? He contradicts himself.
Let us not be such individuals that selectively -and thereby erroneously- apply Bible interpretation techniques in order to dodge the weight of Biblical meaning & message, or to preserve brownie-points with seemingly well-regarded men, whoever they are -God alone really knows. Rather, let us humble ourselves before each fellow Christian, ready of mind to possibly learn something, learn something from the Word of God, from Christ our Teacher. We all have some things to share because the Holy Spirit works through each of us as He wills, and for the same reason we all have some things to learn. But no man but Jesus Christ has it all.
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3) The above two points firmly stand whether or not what follows is valued. It was this very subject that drew me to the preterist view to begin with: If one is to go fishing into the deep, dark waters of distant history for anything remotely resembling prophecy fulfillment, it seems reasonable to begin looking for a big fish such as a 1,000 year period characterized by Christian rule. I was drawn to investigate the possibility that the 1,000 years might be equated with what historians commonly refer to as the 1,000 years of the Middle Age during which today's major world powers were discipled, Christianized.
.

It was engaging to discover how violently out of control and dark things got in the, (by comparison to what they just had enjoyed), "Dark Ages" that followed the Middle Ages and preceeded the Reformation/Rennaissance (French, "Rebirth"), Age of Discovery of the New World, and the dawn of Modern Science and Modern times. Then I read in St. Augustine's City of God (circa ~425ad) and Eusebius' Church History (circa ~325ad) and Phillip Schaff's (a preterist) History of the Christian Church and find that: during the Middle Ages most Christians believed that they were living during of the Millenium (this is one reason why they also believed that saintly martyrs were being resurrected and attaining delegated powers over Creation from the reigning Christ). They antipated that all hell would break loose again at the end of their Millenium which was to end, according to their calculations, at 1000AD. Had they acquired the fortitude of faith to recognise the full prophetic ramifications of Jerusalem's 70AD destruction coupled with Jesus' insistent teaching to His generation that "this generation shall not pass away till all these things are fulfilled", (Mat 24:34), they would have adjusted their calculations to expect the end of their era to end around 1070AD rather than 1000AD.

Continued at History following the 70-1070AD Middle Age http://prophecyhistory.com/?q=node/160.

*Feel FREE to claim as your own anything I write - while I retain the right to do the same the same with it.*

70-1070AD J.S. Russell's Position on the Millennium, the Neglected Third Way of Preterism

By Duncan McKenzie, Ph.D. (Duncan@peoplepc.com)

Links: Duncan McKenzie Study Archive | Duncan McKenzie: The Covenant Judgments of Revelation | The Antichrist Chronicles: vol. II | J.S. Russell's Position on the Millennium, the Neglected Third Way of Preterism | A New Preterist Perspective | Was All The Prophecy in the Bible Fulfilled by A.D.70? | Revelation: The Book of Fulfillment of the Covenant Curses of Leviticus and Deuteronomy | Babylon in Not Jerusalem | Premillennial Preterism | The Serious Error of the Literal Hermeneutic in the Interpretation of the Book of Revelation | A Preterist Book on the Antichrist is Coming | Revelation Chapter 12

The position of James Stuart Russell offers a third option that is different from full preterism and traditional partial preterism. Russell’s position is essentially like the full preterist position (i.e. the one and only Second Coming, the judgment and the resurrection happened at AD 70, the resurrection having an ongoing fulfillment since AD 70. Russell’s position sees us as currently in the new heaven and earth, a symbol of the post AD 70 new covenant order). Where Russell position is different from full preterism is that it does not hold that all Bible prophecy was fulfilled by AD 70. Full preterism can be traced back to the 1970’s and Max King. It was a fundamental shift away from Russell’s position that has never been adequately discussed; in fact it is rarely even mentioned. Russell saw the millennium as beginning at AD 70 not ending at that time as full preterism necessitates. I believe that Russell was right and a wrong turn took place with the advent of full preterism. I say this because of my study of Daniel 7; I believe it lends support to Russell’s position.

It should be noted that in Russell’s system there will be a future end to evil at the end of the millennium (Rev. 20:7-10). In my mind this is an improvement over full preterist paradigm which sees evil as existing into eternity (in men’s hearts). Also Russell’s position does not necessitate the hypothesis of two millenniums. There is much more to be said. I will be saying it in my forthcoming book, The Antichrist and the Second Coming. (800 pages double spaced, see contents below).

The Antichrist and the Second Coming

A Preterist Examination
Duncan McKenzie, Ph. D.
Contents

  1. Introduction
  2. The Coming of the Kingdom of God (Daniel 2)
  3. The Little Horn of the Daniel’s Fourth Beast (Daniel 7)
  4. The King of the North and the Time of the End (Daniel 11:36-12:13)
  5. The Day of the Lord
  6. The Man of Lawlessness (2 Thessalonians 2)
  7. Introduction to the Book of Revelation
  8. The Beast and the False Prophet (Revelation 13)
  9. The Beast and the Harlot (Revelation 17)
  10. The Beast and the Fall of Babylon (Revelation 18)
  11. The Second Coming (Revelation 19)
  12. The Millennium and New Heaven and New Earth (Revelation 20-22)
  13. Where Are We Now?
Appendix A: Why I disagree with the Full Preterist Paradigm

A question that relates to the sequence of the millennium in Revelation is that of the temporal relationship of the judgment committed to those who come alive for the millennium in Revelation 20:4 (And I saw thrones, and they sat on them, and judgment was committed to them…”) and the judgment in Revelation 20:11-15 (Then I saw a great white throne and Him who sat on it…and the dead were judged, vv 11-12). I refer to these two visions of thrones and judgment in Revelation 20:4 and 20:11-15 as the throne scene judgments of Revelation 20. At first glance the sequence appears clear; the setting up of thrones and judgment in Revelation 20:4 happens at the beginning of the millennium and the setting up of the great white throne and judgment in Revelation 20:11-15 happens at the end of the millennium. There is another theory on the sequence of Revelation 20:4 and 11-15, however, that is rarely discussed in the literature on Revelation; i it was proposed by James Stuart Russell. Russell’s position is that what is being shown in Revelation 20 is not two separate throne scenes and judgments (one in Rev. 20:4 and one in 20:11-15) separated by the millennium, but one throne scene and judgment (composed of Revelation 20:4 and 11-15) with a digression of what will happen at the end of the millennium (Revelation 20:7-10) in between. Russell’s position is that John begins describing a throne scene judgment at the beginning of the millennium in Revelation 20:4. At 20:7-10 John digresses about what would happen at the end of the millennium, and then at 20:11 he takes up again the subject of the throne scene judgment he started in 20:4. Russell thus saw the description of the throne scene and judgment that is begun in Revelation 20:4 as being continued in Revelation 20:11. The two sections (Rev. 20:4 and 11-15) are thus describing one throne scene judgment (which happens at the beginning of the millennium) not two throne scene judgments (one at the beginning of the millennium and one at its end). Russell wrote the following on this.

…we must consider the passage which treats of (sic) the thousand years, from ver. 5 to ver. 10, as an intercalation or parenthesis. The Seer, having begun to relate the judgment of the dragon, passes in ver. 7 out of the apocalyptic limits to conclude what he had to say respecting the final punishment of ‘the old serpent,” and the fate that awaited him at the close of a lengthened period called ‘a thousand years.’ This we believe to be the sole instance in the whole book of an excursion into distant futurity; and we are disposed to regard the whole parenthesis as relating to matters still future and unfulfilled. The broken continuity of the narration is joined again at ver. 11, where the seer resumes the account of what…had been interrupted by the digression respecting the thousand years, taking up the thread which was dropped at the close of ver. 4.ii
What Russell is saying is that John begins to relate a throne scene judgment in Revelation 20:4 (And I saw thrones and they sat on them…). In verses 7-10 John digresses and talks about what will happen to Satan at the end of the millennium (“Now when the thousand years have expired, Satan will be released from his prison…” v. 7). At verse 11 the description of the throne scene that was begun in verse 4 is continued (“Then I saw a great white throne and Him who sat on it…).

If Russell’s position is correct (which I believe it is) then the one throne scene and judgment described in Revelation 20:4 and 20:11-15 is as follows.

Rev. 20:4 And I saw thrones and they sat on them and judgment was committed to them. Then I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded for their witnesses to Jesus and for the word of God, who had not worshiped the beast or his image, and had not received his mark on their foreheads or on their hands. And they lived and reigned with Christ for a thousand years

(Parenthesis of 7-10 of what happens at the end of the millennium)

Rev. 20:11-15 Then I saw a great throne and Him who sat on it, from whose face the earth and heaven fled away and there was found no place for them. And I saw the dead, small and great, standing before God and books were opened. And another book was opened, which is the Book of Life. And the dead were judged according to their works, by the things which were written in the books. The sea gave up the dead who were in it, and Death and Hades delivered up the dead who were in them. And they were judged, each according to his works. Then Death and Hades were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. And anyone not found written in the Book of Life was cast into the lake of fire.

If Russell’s position is correct then the picture that emerges is that of the saints of verse 4 (composed of either dead believers or symbolically all believers, living and dead) joining in with God in judging the unbelieving dead in verse 11. If this is true then verse 4 (“And I saw thrones, and they sat on them, and judgment was committed to them…”) is referring to the same judgment that verses 11-12 are (“Then I saw a great white throne and Him who sat on it…and the dead were judged”). It should be noted that Scripture supports this interpretation of Revelation 20:4, 11-15 and its picture of the saints joining with God in the judgment.

Matthew 19:28 Assuredly I say to you, that in the regeneration, when the Son of Man sits on the throne of His glory, you who have followed Me will also sit on twelve thrones judging the twelve tribes of Israel.

1 Corinthians 6:2 Do you not know that the saints will judge the world? And if the world will be judged by you, are you unworthy to judge the smallest matters?

Initially I rejected Russell idea (that Revelation 20:4 and 11-15 were describing one judgment that happened at the beginning of the millennium) as being interesting but unlikely. What finally convinced me that Russell was right, was comparing what is clearly one throne scene and judgment at the beginning of the saints possessing the kingdom in Daniel 7:9-10 (which is when thrones are put in place) with Revelation 20:4 and 11-12. In Daniel 7 there is only one throne scene judgment shown; it is at the beginning of the saints possessing the kingdom, the beginning of the millennium, and it contains the elements of both Revelation 20:4 and 11 (as Russell’s position would predict). This is consistent with the proposition that Rev. 20:4 and 11 are showing one throne scene judgment that happens at the beginning of the millennium. Consider the following comparison of these scriptures. I am using the New Revised Standard Version here and have added the letters A-E for points of comparison. I have also added to Daniel 7 the corresponding verses in Revelation 20 in parentheses.

Dan. 7:9-11 NRSV
As I watched, [A] thrones were set in place (Rev. 20:4) and [B] an Ancient One took his throne (Rev. 20:11), his clothing was white as snow and the hair of his head like pure wool; his throne was fiery flames and its wheels were burning fire. A stream of fire issued and flowed out from his presence. [C] A thousand thousands served him and ten thousand times ten thousand stood attending him (Rev. 20:12). [D] The court sat in judgment (Rev. 20:4) and the [E] books were opened (Rev. 20:12). I watched then because of the noise of the arrogant words that the horn was speaking. And as I watched, the beast was put to death, and its body destroyed and given over to be burned with fire. emphasis added
Rev. 20:4 NRSV
Then [A] I saw thrones, and [D] those seated on them were given authority to judge. I also saw the souls of those who had been beheaded for their testimony to Jesus and for the word of God. They had not worshiped the beast or its image and had not received its mark on their foreheads or their hands. They came to life and reigned with Christ a thousand years. emphasis added
(Parenthesis of 7-10 of what happens at the end of the millennium)
Rev. 20:11-12
Then I saw [B] a great white throne and the one who sat on it; the earth and the heaven fled from his presence, and no place was found for them. And I saw [C] the dead, great and small standing before the throne, and [E] books were opened. Also another book was opened, the book of life. And the dead were judged according to their works, as recorded in the books. emphasis added

Notice that it is only by combining the elements of both Revelation 20:4 and 11-12 that one gets all five of the elements of the one throne scene of Daniel 7:9-10.

Daniel 7:9-10 Revelation 20:4, 11-12

[A]
7: 9. As I watched, thrones were set in place
20:4 I saw thrones

[B]
7:9 an Ancient One took his throne, his clothing white as snow.
20:11 I saw a great white throne and the one who sat on it.

[C]
7:10 A thousand thousands served him and ten thousand times ten thousand stood attending him.
20:12 I saw the dead, great and standing before the throne.

[D]
7:10 The court sat in judgment
20:4 those seated on them [the thrones] were given authority to judge

[E]
7:10 books were opened
20:12 books were opened

Daniel 7:9-10 lends strong support for Russell’s idea that Revelation 20:4 and 20:11-12 is one throne scene and judgment (at the beginning of the millennium) not two judgments (separated by the millennium).iii Note that the NRSV makes element C look different in Daniel and Revelation; the NRSV makes it sound like the ones before the throne are attending the One on the throne. If you look at the NKJV and NASB, however, they give the impression that there are two groups before the throne, those attending God and those there for judgment (“thousands upon thousands were attending Him, and myriads upon myriads were standing before Him; the court sat, and the books were opened.” Dan. 7:10 NASB). If the NASB and NKJV give the correct sense (which I believe they do) then the myriads before the throne in Daniel 7:10 correspond to the dead before the throne in Revelation 20:12, both groups are facing the judgment. If none of those before the throne in Daniel 7:10 are facing judgment, then who is? It would be very strange indeed to show a judgment with no one to be judged.

After examining Daniel 7:9-11, I came to the conclusion that Russell was right; the throne scene and judgment begun in Revelation 20:4 is then continued in Revelation 20:11. Revelation 20 is showing what Paul said would happen at the Second Coming (1 Cor. 6:2); the saints in verse 4 are partnering with God as He judges the world in verses 11-15. Notice how Daniel first saw thrones and then he saw the Ancient of Days take His throne, Dan. 7:9 (“As I watched, thrones were set in place {A} and an Ancient One took his throne” {B}). This is exactly what one gets when one connects Revelation 20:4 with 20:11 (4. “And I saw thrones and they sat on them {A}…11. Then I saw a great throne and Him who sat on it” {B}).

Again, what led me to accept Russell's solution that Rev. 20:4 and 20:11-15 are really describing one throne scene (with the parenthetical statement of what ultimately happens to Satan at the end of the millennium in vv. 7-10) is that it is only in by combining both Rev. 20:4 and 11-12 that you get all five of elements that are found in the one throne scene (which happens at the beginning of the kingdom reign) in Dan. 7:9-11. Daniel’s vision of this throne scene shows the elements of Revelation 20:4 (thrones set up with those sitting on them given the authority to judge) as happening at the same time that elements of Revelation 20:11-12 happen (God takes His throne, myriads are before the throne and the books are opened). This judgment was to happen at the beginning of the saints possessing the kingdom, the AD 70 beginning of the millennium. The millennium began right afterthe defeat of Antichrist (the little horn/individual beast, Dan. 7:9-11, 21-22; Rev. 19:20-20:4); this was the time of the AD 70 Second Coming not AD 30.

Revelation 20:4 and 11-12 are talking about one throne scene and judgment explains the judgment that is committed to those on the thrones in verse 4, the meaning of which is unintelligible if verses 4 and 11-15 aren’t connected. Aune, commenting on this problem, said the following on Revelation 20:4-6, “nothing remotely connected with [krima] ‘judgment’ is found in the narrative; i.e., the right to judge given to those enthroned is apparently not exercised within this pericope.” iv brackets mine Aune further wrote that Rev. 20:4 “looks like the beginning of a judgment scene that is fragmentary, for the judgment itself does not occur (i.e., [krima], ‘judgment’ has no real function in this textual unit)”v brackets mine. This last point is very important; it is strong evidence against the possibility that John was deliberating splitting of the judgment in Daniel 7:9-10 into two separate judgments (not that I have ever seen anyone make this argument). If John were deliberately splitting the throne judgment of Daniel 7 into two judgments, one would think he would have done a more coherent job. That is, the judgment that the saints on thrones in Revelation 20:4 participate in does not make sense if it is not connected to the throne judgment of Revelation 20:11-12. It thus see no indication that John was separating the judgment of Daniel 7 into two judgments (separated by the millennium) in Revelation 20. In Daniel 7:9 thrones are put in place (cf. Rev. 20:4) at the same time that the Ancient of Days is seated (cf. Rev. 20:11).

Some try to escape this problem of the judgment that never happens in Revelation 20:4 by saying that judgment committed to those on the thrones means that they rule, not that they are involved in a judgment. Mounce noted, however, that although the OT term for “to judge” (Heb. mishphat) has connotations of both judging and ruling, the Greek word for “to judge” (krima) does not carry such a range of meaning (he cites Bauer, Arndt, Gingrich, and Danker “as showing no such meaning for [krima]”)vi Again, my position is that the judgment of Revelation 20:4 is not fragmentary; the judgment John begins to describe at the beginning of the millennium in Revelation 20:4 is continued in 20:11. Thus Revelation (like Daniel) is showing one judgment at the beginning of the saints possessing the kingdom (the millennium, Dan. 7:26-27), not two judgments (one at the beginning of the millennium and one at the end).

That Revelation 20:4 and 11-15 are describing one throne scene judgment at the beginning of the millennium (not one at the beginning and one at the end) explains why there is no Second Coming shown at the end of the millennium in Rev. 20:7-10 (which is a fatal problem for postmillennialists). Both full preterists and most traditional partial preterists are post-millennialists. Full preterists say that the Second Coming happened in AD 70 at the end of the millennium. Most traditional partial preterists say the Second Coming will happen in the future at the end of some form of a millennium. Look at what Revelation says about the end of the millennium, however; it does not mention the Second Coming as happening at that time.

Rev. 20:7-10 Now when the thousand years have expired, Satan will be released from his prison and will go out to deceive the nations which are in the four corners of the earth, Gog and Magog, to gather them together to battle, whose number is as the sand of the sea. They went up on the breadth of the earth and surrounded the camp of the saints and the beloved city. And fire came down from God out of heaven and devoured them. The devil, who deceived them, was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone where the beast and the false prophet are. And they will be tormented day and night forever and ever.

This is the only unequivocal statement in Revelation concerning the end of the millennium, and the Second Coming is not even mentioned. We are shown God’s judgment on Gog and Magog here (the fire coming from God in vs. 9) but that is hardly the Second Coming. There is no Second Coming mentioned in this section.vii In the same manner there is no coming of God shown in Ezekiel 38-39, which is the passage that Revelation 20:7-10 is referring to. The coming of God happens at the beginning of the saints inheriting the kingdom (Dan. 7:21-27). This is when thrones are set up, at the beginning of the millennium (Dan. 7:7-12). What many have construed as a judgment at the end of the millennium in Revelation 20:11-15 is just the continuation of the judgment John was describing that happens at the beginning of the millennium in Revelation 20:4. Again, understanding that the judgment of Revelation 20:4 and 11-15 are one judgment at the beginning of the millennium helps to explain why the Second Coming is not shown at the end of the millennium. Daniel 7 (which is what the millennial teaching of Revelation 20 is drawn from) only shows one judgment and it was to happen at the AD 70 coming of God (the Second Coming) at beginning of the saints possessing the kingdom (the beginning of the millennium, Dan. 7:7-11, 21-27).

As I mentioned earlier, I originally rejected Russell’s position on the millennium. Allow me to share some of my earlier ideas on the millennium, as I think they are initially attractive but ultimately lead in the wrong direction. My earlier position (which I now think is mistaken) was that Rev. 20:4 was the 70AD beginning of the millennium and that Rev. 20:11-15 was the resurrection and judgment at the end of the millennium (which I saw as the end of time). I thus was in agreement with Russell that the millennium began at AD 70 but was extending Russell’s view on future things (relative to us) from Revelation 20:10 to 20:15. That is, Russell’s position is that only Revelation 20:7-10 speaks of future things whereas my former position saw Revelation 20:5-15 as dealing with future things (i.e. I saw Rev. 20:10-15 being a future judgment at the end of the millennium). In my former position I saw Revelation 21 as returning to AD 70, as the topic of the New Jerusalem/bride started in Revelation 19:7 is continued (Rev. 21:2, 9-10). My position seemed fine at first but on closer inspection I discovered logistical problems that could not be remedied.

In Rev. 21:1 (which my old position had said was AD 70) there is no more sea. If the sea (symbolic of Satan’s domain) ceased to exist in AD 70 how could it be around to give up the dead in it at (what my old position had said was) the end of time in Rev. 20:13? Also in Rev. 20:11 heaven and earth/Land flee and there is no place found for them. If this was the end of time, how is it that there is a new heaven and earth/Land in Rev. 21:1 (which my old position said was AD 70)? The necessity of a new heaven and Land in Revelation 21:1 (which I was saying was AD 70) was because the old heaven and Land had fled in Rev. 20:11 (which I was saying was the end of time). To say Revelation 21:1 is AD 70 while Revelation 20:11 is the end of time did not make sense. If Revelation 21:1 is referring to an AD 70 new heaven and new Land then the old heaven and old Land fleeing in Revelation 20:11 must also be referring to AD 70. Similarly, If Revelation 20:11 is the end of time then Revelation 21:1 should be the end of time. The new heaven and new Land in Rev. 21:1 is a direct result of the fleeing of the old heaven and old Land in Rev. 20:11. If Rev. 21:1 is AD 70 then Rev. 20:11 should also be AD 70. Since one is the direct result of the other, one can not separate the two time periods.viii The logical inconsistencies of my previous position presented an insurmountable challenge. Since I knew that the full preterist solution that the millennium was the period from AD 30 to AD 70 was wrong, I went back and reexamined, and ultimately accepted, Russell's position.

While I believe that Russell’s proposition that Revelation 20:4 and 20:11-15 form one judgment at the AD 70 beginning of the millennium is correct, it does bring up a difficulty. Revelation 20:5a says, “But the rest of the dead did not live again until the thousand years were finished.” This would seem to be at odds with the position which I am advocating which sees one resurrection of the righteous and wicked happening at the beginning of the “thousand years,” not a resurrection of the righteous at the beginning of the “thousand years,” (Rev. 20:4, 6) and then another resurrection, of the wicked (or wicked and righteous) at the end. As I investigated this difficulty, I discovered that there is some question as to whether the part of verse 5 (5a) that speaks of the rest of the dead coming alive after the thousand years was in the original text of Revelation. Notice how the NRSV highlights how Revelation 20:5a interrupts the flow of John’s thought from verse 4 to 5b. In an attempt to smooth this interruption out, the NRSV (as well as the NIV) puts 5a in parentheses (I have added a and b to v. 5).

4. Then I saw thrones, and those seated on them were given authority to judge. I also saw the souls of those who had been beheaded for their testimony to Jesus and for the word of God. They had not worshiped the beast or its image and had not received its mark on their foreheads or their hands. They came to life and reigned with Christ a thousand years. 5a. (The rest of the dead did not come to life until the thousand years were ended.) b. This is the first resurrection. Rev. 20:4-5 NRSV

As it stands, Revelation 20:5 does not make sense, 5a. reads “But the rest of the dead did not live again until the thousand years were finished.” 5b. reads “This is the first resurrection.” This makes it sound like the rest of the dead coming to life after the thousand years constitutes the first resurrection. Aune said the following about how verse 5a interrupts this passage, “Since the clause interrupts the thought of the passage, it may have been an annotation added at a final stage of composition.”ix Beale said the following on the awkwardness of Revelation 20:5a. The rest of the dead did not come to life… “is omitted by several good mss. [see footnote] because it was abrupt and seemed out of place or, more likely because a copyist’s eye skipped from ‘years’ at the end of v. 4 to the following ‘years’ [in verse 5].”x

I don’t believe that Revelation 5a is missing in some of the best manuscripts of Revelation simply due to a copyist’s error (this type of error is referred to as a “homoioteleuton”). Revelation 5a is absent in a little over a third of all manuscripts of Revelation including two of the three best (Sinaiticus and 2053 don’t have it, Alexandrinus does). James Parkinson wrote the following on Revelation 20:5a and whether it is part of the original text of Revelation.

In the Greek of Rev 20:5 the first sentence ends with “the thousand years,” just as does the last sentence of the preceding verse. Thus, if it is assumed both sentences were in the original, it would have been an easy mistake for the copyist’s eye to skip from the first “the thousand years” to the second, thus accidentally omitting a sentence. Indeed, Tischendorf, Alford, and others automatically regard it as an accidental omission (technically referred to as a “homoioteleuton”). However, if the sentence in question were originally a comment, with the same terminal words, the automatic judgment has no way to detect it as spurious. In the case of Rev 20:5, the sentence, “The rest of the dead lived not until the thousand years were finished” (Greek: ...until were finished the thousand years) has sufficient theological import that it is unlikely it would disappear quietly from about 37% of the manuscripts (from a progressively higher percentage in centuries before the fourteenth). While the Millennarian sentiment of Papias (early 2nd century) and others might welcome accidental omission, the anti-Millennarian spirit from Constantine onwards would severely punish it. The sentence itself interrupts the context, perhaps implying that the first resurrection is the absence of a resurrection! The earlier Aecumenius text (in manuscript 2053, preserving a text of ca. A.D. 600) omits the sentence both times, but it is added in the commentary; it suggests the sentence itself may have originated similarly.

Subsequent additions of the Words “But” and “again” seem like an effort to smooth out a foreign sentence. The absence of the disputed sentence in two of the three best manuscripts does not permit the question to be automatically dismissed, particularly because its absence from the Aramaic (Syriac), and from the popular family 82, implies that it is not a local accidental omission. Nevertheless, the manuscript evidence is not so strong as to remove all doubt; so it is here listed under Probable Corrections. xi

I believe that Revelation 5a may well have been a gloss, an early marginal comment by a scribe that got incorporated into the text of Revelation. R.H. Charles wrote the following along these lines.

As another illustration of the critical value of the form of the text I will give the vision of the kingdom of Christ and the glorified martyrs in 20:4-6. This vision would consist of seven stanzas of two lines each, but for the prosaic addition in the fifth stanza 20:5a: ‘the rest of the dead lived not till the thousand years were fulfilled.’ If this were original we should expect it to be introduced by a conjunction and that an adversative one: ‘And they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years, but the rest of the dead lived not.’ But no such conjunction is given. Hence the words appear to be a marginal gloss incorporated in the text. Moreover, it intervenes between two lines which should not be separated; for the second line (‘This is the first resurrection’) defines what the first line means. Thus the first stanza should be read: 20: 4i And they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years; 5b This is the first resurrection.’xii

The Syriac Philoxenian version of the New Testament (from the sixth century) reads the way that Charles suggests as being correct. It omits Revelation 20:5a (“the rest of the dead did not come to life until the thousand years were ended” NRSV) and connects the 2 lines that Charles felt are incorrectly separated. It gives an idea of how I believe Revelation 20:4-6 should read.

04 And I saw thrones, and [persons] sat on them, and judgment was given to them, and to the souls that were beheaded for the testimony of Jesus and for the word of God: and these are they who had not worshipped the beast of prey, nor its image, neither had they received the mark upon their forehead or on their hand; and they lived and reigned with their Messiah those thousand years. 05 This is the first resurrection. 06 Blessed and holy is he that hath part in this first resurrection: over them the second death hath no dominion; but they shall be, [nay] are, priests of God and of his Messiah; and they will reign with him the thousand years.xiii brackets in original
This reading is much less awkward, but more importantly, it is consistent with the teaching of the rest of Scripture that there is only one resurrection event of the physical dead (although that resurrection continues since its AD 70 beginning).xiv Nowhere else in Scripture does it show two resurrections of the physical dead separated in time. It should be clear that Revelation 20:4 is referring to the time of the resurrection, as it shows the coming to life of the souls of those who had been killedxv by the beast. These were the souls of believers (the saints overcome by the beast, cf. Rev. 13:7), being resurrected. This is not a spiritual coming to life, as the dead here were saints; they were already spiritually alive (cf. Rev. 6:9-11). Johnson said the following about how the coming alive of the martyrs of the beast is not speaking of a spiritual coming to life.
The reference to “souls” (psychas) immediately recalls 6:9, where the same expression is used of the slain witnesses under the altar. The word describes those who have lost their bodily lives but are nevertheless still alive in God’s sight. This term prepares us for their coming to (bodily) life again at the first resurrection. It is a mistake to take psychas to imply a later spiritual resurrection or rebirth of the soul, as did Augustine and many since. These martyrs are also those who did not worship the beast or his image or receive his mark on them (cf. 13:1-17; 15:2).xvi

Only one resurrection, a first, is explicitly mentioned in Revelation 20 (although such a designation could infer a second). Personally I believe that two resurrections are inferred here but that they are not separated in time. That is, they are two aspects of one resurrection event. Again, this is consistent with the rest of Scripture which shows only one resurrection of the physically dead that includes the righteous and the wicked. Jesus talked about two resurrections of the physical dead, but they were part of the same resurrection event. The first resurrection was to life, the second was to condemnation, “Do not marvel at this, for the hour is coming in which all who are in the graves will hear His voice and come forth- those who have done good, to the resurrection of life and those who have done evil, to the resurrection of condemnation.” (John 5:28-29; cf. Dan. 12:1-2; 7). These two resurrections that Jesus referred to were to happen at the same time; they were not to be separated by a period of time (such as the millennium).


i This position is not discussed by either Aune or Beale (who between the two of them cover quite a lot of ground) or any other current day commentary on Revelation that I am aware of.

ii J. Stuart Russell, The Parousia, New Edition (Grand Rapids: Baker Books, 1999), 523-524. Originally published in London by T. Fisher Unwin, 1887.

iii Russell made little to no use of the book of Daniel in The Parousia. This is unfortunate as Daniel supports his position.

iv David Aune, Revelation 17-22, Word Bible Commentary vol. 52c, gen. eds. Bruce Metzger, David Hubbard and Glen Barker, NT ed. Ralph Martin (Nashville: Thomas Nelson, 1998), 1079.

v David Aune, Revelation 17-22, Word Bible Commentary vol. 52c, gen. eds. Bruce Metzger, David Hubbard and Glen Barker, NT ed. Ralph Martin (Nashville: Thomas Nelson, 1998), 1084. Aune sees the seemingly disorganized arrangement of this part of Revelation 20 as due to “hysteron-proteron,” the reversing of the logical order of narrative events.

vi In spite of this, Mounce suggests that “rule” may be the meaning here. Robert H. Mounce, The Book of Revelation, rev. ed., The New International Commentary on the New Testament, gen. eds. Ned Stonehouse, F.F. Bruce and Gordon Fee (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans Publishing, 1998), 364. Mounces citation for the meaning of krima is found in W. Bauer, W.F. Arndt, F.W. Gingrich, and F. Danker, A Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament (2nd ed., Chicago, 1979), 450-51.

vii Postmillennialists assume (as do most others) that the judgment of Revelation 20:11-15 happens at the end of the millennium, it is taken for granted by them that the Second Coming has to happen at this time even though it is not shown.

viii Some partial preterists maintain that Revelation 20:11 is the end of time and yet Revelation 21:1 is AD 70. One can disconnect these two verses in terms of their timing. The new heaven and new Land in Rev. 21:1 is a direct result of the fleeing of the old heaven and old Land in Rev. 20:11. If Rev. 21:1 is AD 70 then Rev. 20:11 should also be AD 70. If Revelation 20:11 is the end of time then Revelation 21:1 should be the end of time. The new heaven and earth of Rev. 21 happen right after the fleeing of the old heaven and earth in Rev. 20.

ix David Aune, Revelation 17-22, Word Bible Commentary vol. 52c, gen. eds. Bruce Metzger, David Hubbard and Glen Barker, NT ed. Ralph Martin (Nashville: Thomas Nelson, 1998), 1090.

x G. K. Beale, The Book of Revelation, The New International Greek Testament Commentary, eds. I. Howard Marshall and Donald Hagner, (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1999), 1015. The manuscripts that Beale cites are the following: Sinaiticus, 2030, 2053, 2062, 2377; also the better mss of the Majority text of the Apocalypse, the Syriac, Vic, Bea. Note: ‘Vic’ stands for Victorinus Petavionensis, which means that Victor, a Bishop in Austrian around 300 (very early) quotes the passage and omits 20:5a. ‘Bea’ stands for the Commentary on the Apocalypse written by Beatus of Liebana (Spain) in the late 8th century which quotes this passage, again without 20:5a. These are very interesting-showing Western Europe’s acceptance of this version of the text. This reading, then, occurred in Syria, Egypt, and Austria. I am indebted to Stephen Douglas for helping me better understand the manuscript evidence.

xi “Manuscript Evidence and the English New Testament” http://www.heraldmag.org/olb/contents/reference/mscript1.pdf accessed 6-20-2006
The few references I know of that mention the question of Rev. 20:5a are the following:
The Greek New Testament According to the Majority Text - Hodges & Farstad
Concerning the Text of the Apocalypse - H. C. Hoskier
International Critical Commentary on Revelation - R. H. Charles.

xii R.H. Charles, The British Academy Lectures on the Apocalypse, (London: Oxford University Press, 1922), 44-45.

xiii James Murdock, The New Testament: Translated from the Syriac Peshitto Version (New York: Stanford and Swords, 1852), Gary Cernava 1996. The text that this version of Revelation is based on is from the 6th century. Earlier editions of the Syriac New Testament did not contain Revelation; see Gentry, Before Jerusalem Fell, 106.

xiv The resurrection continues as people have continued to believe since AD 70. It continues in the spiritual sensed when one is born again. It continues in its ultimate sense when the believer dies and puts on his or her resurrection body (cf. Rev. 14:8-13).

xv I have had full preterists try to make this fit an AD 30 beginning of the millennium. They say that these are the souls of those who would be killed by the beast (future to AD 30). Revelation 20:4, however, says that these souls of the martyrs of the beast had been killed (past tense). If the millennium began at AD 30 this would require a pre-AD 30 individual beast and mark (Rev. 13:11-18) to produce the martyrs that come alive in the millennium.

xvi Alan F. Johnson, Revelation in The Expositor’s Bible Commentary, Revised Edition: vol. 13 Hebrews-Revelation, Tremper Longman III and David E. Garland gen. eds. (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2006), 767. While Johnson and I agree that the souls coming to life n Rev. 20:4 is a reference to dead people being resurrected (as opposed to merely a spiritual coming to life) Johnson would not agree with me that the Second Coming and resurrection happened (or more correctly, started) at AD 70

70-1070AD Premillenial Preterism

By Duncan McKenzie, Ph.D. (Duncan@peoplepc.com)

From: http://www.preteristarchive.com/PartialPreterism/mckenzie-duncan_pp_05.html

Anybody who has been around preterism for any length of time may be thinking “Oh great just what we need another brand of preterism!” In this article I will not be offering another brand or form of preterism but highlighting an existing form that isn’t discussed much. The form of preterism I will be discussing is James Stuart Russell’s premillennial preterism. Simply stated Russell’s position was that the one and only Second Coming (the Parousia) happened in AD 70. Russell saw the Second Coming as beginning the millennium in AD 70 (not ending it at that time as full preterists teach); this made him a premillennialist.

Premillennial Preterism at first sounds like an oxymoron, a contradiction in terms, (something like “thunderous silence”). The reason for this is because we usually associate premillennialism with futurism. For example Hal Lindsey, who is a futurist, is a premillennialist. The term “premillennial,” however, simply speaks of the sequence of the Second Coming and the millennium it doesn’t address their timing. A premillennialist believes that Jesus returns before (pre) the millennium. A premillennial futurist like Lindsey believes Jesus will return in the future to begin the millennium. A premillennial preterist like Russell believes that Jesus returned in past (AD 70) and started the millennium at that time.
James Stuart Russell, the author of the classic preterist work The Parousia (1878) was a premillennial preterist. His position falls in-between current day full preterism and traditional partial preterism (I use the term “traditional partial preterism” to distinguish it from Russell’s premillennial preterism, which, while technically partial preterism, is much closer to full preterism). Full preterism could be classified as either amillennial or postmillennial, it says that Jesus’ Second Coming occurred at the end of the millennium in AD 70. Because full preterists believe all prophecy was fulfilled by AD 70 they are forced to fit the millennium in before AD 70. Their usual solution is to say the millennium was the 40-year period between AD 30 and AD 70. Actually, full preterists have to cut the millennium down from 40 years to make it fit before AD 70. Revelation 20:7-10 says that after the 1000 years of the millennium are ended Satan is released from the abyss to deceive the nations and gather them together for a massive invasion of Jerusalem. One has to fit this time at the end of the millennium in before AD 70 also. If one starts the millennium at AD 30 he or she has to subtract the period at its end (when Satan is loosed) from the 40 years to determine the actual length of the “1,000 year” reign.
Traditional partial preterists maintain that AD 70 was a coming of Jesus in judgment on Israel, but believe that the “real” Second Coming is to happen in the future. Again Russell’s position is in between full preterism and traditional partial preterism. Like full preterists Russell believed that AD 70 was the time of the one and only Second Coming, like partial preterists he didn’t believe that all the prophecy in the Bible was fulfilled at that time. Since the definition of a full preterist is one who believes that all prophecy was fulfilled by AD 70, technically Russell was a partial preterist. Instead of believing that the Second Coming in AD 70 ended the millennium (as full preterists do), Russell saw the Second Coming as beginning the millennium. To simply call Russell’s position either full preterism or partial preterism does not adequately describe his position; this is why I am proposing the term “premillennial preterism.” Premillennial preterism is the position I ascribe to and neither the label of full preterist or partial preterist really fit it (although it is much closer to full preterism then it is to traditional partial preterism).

Russell’s position on the book of Revelation was that all of it was fulfilled around AD 70 except for Revelation 20:5-10. Russell saw Revelation 20:5-10 as forming a parenthesis of future things. Below is Revelation 20:4-11, I have highlighted Russell’s proposed parenthesis of verses 5-10.

Revelation 20:4-11

4. And I saw thrones, and they sat on them, and judgment was committed to them. Then I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded for their witness to Jesus and for the word of God, who had not worshipped the beast or his image, and had not received his mark on their foreheads or on their hands. And they lived and reigned with Christ for a thousand years.
5 But the rest of the dead did not live again until the thousand years were finished. This is the first resurrection. 6 Blessed and holy is he who has part in the first resurrection. Over such the second death has no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with Him a thousand years. 7 Now when the thousand years have expired, Satan will be released from his prison 8 and will go out to deceive the nations which are in the four corners of the earth, Gog and Magog, to gather them together to battle, whose number is as the sand of the sea. 9 They went up on the breadth of the earth and surrounded the camp of the saints and the beloved city. And fire came down from God out of heaven and devoured them. 10 The devil, who deceived them, was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone where the beast and the false prophet are. And they will be tormented day and night forever and ever.
11. Then I saw a great white throne and Him who sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away. And there was found no place for them
John, being shown the beginning of the millennium in verse 4 (which was about to start) is briefly enlightened of about what will happen at its end (Rev. 20:5-10). At Revelation 20:11 (to the end of Revelation) John goes back to describing events that were about to happen. Notice how John breaks from “I saw” in verse 4 and returns to “I saw” at verse 11. Russell said that John was relating vision (of things that were about to happen) with the “I saw” in verse 4. At verse 5 he breaks into prophecy of future events at the end of the millennium. At verse 11 he returns to vision again using “I saw”. Thus the judgment at verse 11 is not a separate judgment but a continuation of the description of the judgment John started at verse 4.
Notice that the judgment committed to God’s people in Rev. 20:4 (“and judgment was committed to them”) is something that has been promised to the believers at the judgment at Jesus’ Second Coming (which full preterists correctly say was AD 70).
“Do you not know that the saints will judge the world? And if the world will be judged by you, are you unworthy to judge the smallest matters?” 1 Cor. 6:2.
The judgment committed to God’s people in Revelation 20:4 is the judgment that Paul was telling his readers they would participate in the future (at the judgment at the Second Coming in AD 70). To say millennium of Revelation 20:4 is talking about AD 30 doesn’t fit the judgment that is shown being committed to believer.
Russell gave the following connection between the judgment given to God’s people in Rev. 20:4 and the judgment promised to the disciples.
We further observe that there is a manifest allusion in this passage [Rev. 20:4] to the promise of our Lord to His disciples, ‘Verily I say unto you, That ye which have followed me, in the regeneration when the Son of man shall sit in the throne of his glory, ye also shall sit upon twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel’ (Matt 19:28). That period has now arrived. The regeneration, when the kingdom of the Messiah was to come, is now regarded as present and the disciples are glorified with their glorified Master…The Parousia 519-520 emphasis mine
In an attempt to show that the millennium began at AD 30 there are those in both the full and partial preterist camps that say the “regeneration” began at AD 30. Matthew 25:31 dispels this notion. Jesus had said in Matt. 19:28 that the regeneration would be at the time when He would “sit on the throne of His Glory.” Matthew 25:31 puts this time when Jesus sits on the throne of His glory at the Second Coming in AD 70.
Matthew 25:31
When the Son of Man comes in His glory, and all the holy angels with Him, then He will sit on the throne of His glory. emphasis mine
This fits an AD 70 beginning to the millennium. Jesus promised his followers the power of judgment in the regeneration when he would sit on the throne of His glory (Matt 19:28). Matt. 25:31 puts this time of Jesus sitting on His throne of glory as being at the Second Coming. For full preterists this is an AD 70 event not an AD 30 event. The millennium (Rev. 20:4) shows this AD 70 event of judgment being given to believers (Paul included all believers as participating in the judgment of the world at the Second Coming 1 Cor. 6:2).
Traditional partial preterists put Matt. 25:31 in the future at what they see as the final Parousia. Logically then they should put the regeneration in the future although many of them also seem to want to put the regeneration at AD 30 (at least that is what David Chilton taught when he was a traditional partial preterist. David Chilton The Days of Vengeance (PDF) 509 &510 Chilton became a full preterist shortly before he died in 1997). Again the regeneration was when Jesus was to sit on the throne of His glory (Matt. 19:28), which was to happen at the Second Coming (Matt.25:31). Whenever one wants to make the Second Coming is when they should be saying the regeneration was or will be (of course the correct answer is that the regeneration was in AD 70 at the Second Coming of Jesus).
Revelation 21:4&5 show the regeneration.
4. And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away.
5. “Then He who sat on the throne said “Behold, I make all things new.…”
Full preterists correctly say that the Rev. 21:5 regeneration is an AD 70 event, they are inconsistent when they try to put the Matt 19:28 regeneration (when authority and judgment were promised to the disciples) back to AD 30 to try to try and make the millennium start in AD 30. That would make two different regenerations (which is about as consistent as traditional partial preterists making two different Parousias).
In Russell’s mind the millennium was a near event in terms of its beginning but the end of it would be in the distant future from when John wrote. When Max King came along in the early 70’s he put forth the proposition that all prophecy (including the millennium) was fulfilled by AD 70. This was the birth of modern day full preterism. A fundamental shift occurred at this time from Russell’s premillennial preterism to full preterism. Again the full preterist position is that the millennium (and the season at its end) was from around AD 30-70, and that the Second Coming in AD 70 occurred at its end. It is this shift that Max King made away from Russell’s position that I am seeking to highlight. I personally believe it was a mistake but either way people need to be more aware of it (so they can make up their own minds). Let me interject here that even though I disagree with full preterists they are obviously my brothers and sisters in Christ. Max King appears from his writings to clearly be a fellow believer who is searching for the truth just as I am. I have some disagreements with his position but I am not questioning his character as a person or his commitment as a Christian. As I have said my position is much closer to full preterism than traditional partial preterism. Of course the final authority is not Russell or King but Scripture, all conservative (Bible believing) preterists agree on this.
Russell said the following about those who in his day (the mid to late 1800’s) were trying to fit the millennium in before AD 70 (which is what full preterists propose).
Some interpreters indeed attempt to get over the difficulty [of the end of the millennium not being one of the things that were at hand when John wrote] by supposing that the thousand years, being a symbolic number, may represent a period of very short duration, and so bring the whole within the prescribed apocalyptic limits [of AD 70]; but this method of interpretation appears to us so violent and unnatural that we cannot hesitate to reject it. The act of binding and shutting up the dragon does indeed come within the ‘shortly’ of apocalyptic statement, for it is coincident, or nearly so, with the judgment of the harlot and the beast; but the term of the dragon’s imprisonment is distinctly stated to be for a thousand years, and thus must necessarily pass entirely beyond the field of vision so strictly and constantly limited by the book itself. We believe, however, that this is the solitary example which the whole book contains of this excursion beyond the limits of ‘shortly;’ and we agree with [Moses] Stuart that no reasonable difficulty can be made on account of this single exception to the rule. We shall also find as we proceed that the events referred to as taking place after the termination of the thousand years are predicted as in a prophecy, and not represented as in a vision. Indeed the passage, chap. 20:5-10, seems evidently introduced parenthetically, interrupting the continuity of the narrative, which is again resumed, as we shall see, at ver. 11. James Stuart Russell, The Parousia pg. 514 emphasis mine
Russell was saying that John started describing the judgment at the beginning of the millennium (AD 70) in verse 4. He breaks into prophecy about what will happen at the end of the millennium in verses 5-10 and then returns to describing the judgment at the beginning of the millennium in verse 11. Russell’s position is thus in agreement with full preterists over most things (the Second Coming and judgment were in AD 70, we are currently in the New Jerusalem etc.). The disagreement between Russell’s position and full preterism would be over Revelation 20:5-10 and the idea that all prophecy had to be fulfilled by AD 70. Thus Russell saw Satan as still on the scene after AD 70, though limited in his ability to deceive the nations (the meaning of the symbol of Satan being bound and put in the bottomless pit as he was not bound with a literal chain and put in a pit in the earth at AD 70). In contrast full preterists see Satan as being eternally off the scene, confined to his final place of judgment (the lake of fire) in AD 70.
That Russell, the father (grandfather?) of modern preterism considered trying to fit the millennium in before AD 70 “violent and unnatural” should not be taken lightly (it is usually ignored or brushed aside by full preterists as they embrace Russell as one of their own). This is a strong condemnation of the full preterism’s premise that all prophecy was fulfilled by AD 70.
The full preterist proposition of starting the millennium at or around AD 30 runs into a very big problem right off the bat. Consider the millennium verse of Revelation 20:4.
Rev. 20:4 And I saw thrones, and they sat on them, and judgment was committed to them. The I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded for their witness to Jesus and for the word of God, who had not worshiped the beast or his image, and had not received his mark on their foreheads or on their hands. And they lived and reigned with Christ for a thousand years. emphasis mine
One of the groups that enter the millennium consists of martyrs who had not worshipped the beast or his image. These believers had overcome the beast at the cost of their lives Cf. Rev. 12:11. The beast was to be an eighth king (Rev. 17:11) he was to come after Nero (AD 54-68) who all preterists agree was the sixth king (the one ruling when Revelation was written, Rev. 17:10). The beast was to be destroyed at the Second Coming in AD 70 (Rev. 19:11-21). Whoever one wants to say the beast was (I am not going into his identity here) he existed around the time of AD 70 as he fights against Jesus at the Second Coming (Rev. 19:11-21). The mark of the beast is discussed in Revelation chapter 13. John was warning his readers not to take it. The millennium was being held out as a reward to those who would face the beast, some of them would be killed in the process of resisting him. Now to say the millennium started around AD 30 means that some of those coming alive at that time (AD 30) had been martyred by the beast. This just doesn’t fit the timing of Revelation. One would have to come up with a pre-AD 30 beast (and remember the beast was to be an eighth king that was to come after Nero! {54-68} Rev. 17:11). Even if one comes up with a pre-AD 30 beast, why were Christians being warned about him some 35 years after the fact? (Revelation was probably written around AD 65). If the mark of the beast were a pre AD 30 phenomenon then Jesus should have been warning about it in AD 30 instead of John warning about it in AD 65. Again, the people who come alive for the millennium had overcome the beast, this fits an AD 70 beginning to the millennium not an AD 30 beginning.
At this point some would say that at times in Revelation the beast refers to a person and at times it refers to the Roman Empire, thus a pre AD 30 mark of the beast could refer to the general worship of the emperor. It is true that at times the beast speaks of an individual and at other times the kingdom which he was a part of is stressed (consider Rev. 12:3 where it is the dragon with 7 heads and 10 horns not the beast) but the mark of the beast (which those who enter the millennium hadn’t taken) refers to a specific man. He was to be an eighth king, who was to come after the sixth king who was Nero (AD 54-68) Rev. 17:10&11. Revelation chapter 13 makes this point.
Revelation 13:16-18
16. He [the land beast, a.k.a. the false prophet Cf. Rev. 19:20] causes all, both small and great rich and poor, free and slave, to receive a mark on their right hand or on their foreheads,
17. and that no one may buy or sell except one who has the mark or the name of the beast, or the number of his name.
18. Here is wisdom, Let him who has understanding calculate the number of the beast, for it is the number of a man: His number is 666. emphasis mine
The (sea) beast and the land beast of Revelation 13 represent specific persons (the land beast was from the “land” of Israel. He is the one who enforces the sea beast’s mark. The sea beast of Rev.13 is “the beast,” the land beast is later referred to as the “false prophet,” Rev. 19:20). In Revelation 19:19-20 the beast and false prophet fight against Jesus at the AD 70 Second Coming and are thrown into the lake of fire at that time. I don’t think anybody would want to take the position that this was referring to the Roman Empire being thrown into the lake of fire at AD 70. To try and say that the mark of the beast was simply worshipping the Roman Empire (so one can say the mark of the beast was a pre AD 30 phenomenon and thus say the millennium started at AD 30) is illegitimate. It is an attempt to avoid the clear AD 70 implications of those who enter the millennium, they “had not received his [the beast’s] mark on their foreheads or on their hands” Rev. 20.4. Again, the mark of the beast had to do with a specific ruler (“Let him who has understanding calculate the number of the beast, for it is the number of a man”). One cannot legitimately make the beast (who was an eighth king that was to come after Nero (AD 54-68) who was the sixth king Rev. 17:10&11) and his mark a pre AD 30 phenomenon.
In Revelation chapter 14 John saw three angels. The first had the everlasting gospel to preach to every inhabitant of the earth (Rev. 14:6). This was something Jesus said had to happen by the Second Coming (AD 70) Matt. 24:14; cf. Col. 1:5&6. The second angel proclaims that Babylon (Jerusalem) is fallen (Rev. 14:8), again an AD 70 event. The third angel proclaims
Revelation 14:9 “If anyone worships the beast and his image, and receives his mark on his forehead or on his hand, he himself shall also drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out full strength into the cup of His indignation…”
Again this is an AD 70 event as the beast was to come after Nero {AD 54-68} (the sixth king Rev. 17:10&11) and fights against Jesus at the Second Coming (Rev. 19:11-21). The very next thing John sees in Revelation chapter 14 (vs.14-16) is One like the Son of Man on a cloud reaping the harvest of souls from the earth (the Second Coming). These are all AD 70 events. To try and make the third angel’s pronouncement about the mark of the beast speak of the time around AD 30 is, as Russell said, doing violence to Scripture but that is what one has to do to fit the millennium in before AD 70. Of course another option for full preterists would be to come up with two beasts, one pre AD 30 and one around the time of AD 70, but this is absurd.
One of the underlying problems here is that full preterists use verses like Luke 21:22 to establish a higher order interpretive principle, what I call a “meta-hermeneutic.” Full preterists interpret Luke 21:22 (“For these are the days of vengeance, that all things which are written may be fulfilled”) as saying that all prophecy in the Bible was to be fulfilled by AD 70. If this is true (which it isn’t) then the millennium must fit in before AD 70 even though the context of Revelation clearly doesn’t allow for it. In my article “Was All the Prophecy in the Bible Fulfilled by AD 70” (on the partial preterism section of the Preterist Archive under my name) I examine Luke 21:22. In that article I argue that a meta-hermeneutic (a higher order interpretive principle), because it forms the basis for how one interprets Scripture, needs to be examined very carefully and be very solid. I argue that when one examines Luke 21:22 in terms of it meaning that all the prophecy in the Bible was to be fulfilled by AD 70 that meaning does not hold up. The importance of full preterists reexamining Luke 21:22 cannot be overemphasized, it is a linchpin in their “all fulfilled by AD 70” foundation of full preterism. This hermeneutic constraint (that all Bible prophecy must be fulfilled by AD 70) is what makes full preterists feel they need to fit the millennium in before AD 70. Again see my article.
Another difference between full preterism and Russell’s premillennial preterism centers on the current location of Satan. Full preterists teach that Satan was banished to the abyss in AD 30 (at what they see as the beginning of the millennium) and then to his final place of torment, (the lake of fire), in AD 70. Full preterists thus take the position that evil was dealt with as fully as it ever will be in AD 70. This means evil will have no final end or if it does Scripture doesn’t address it. Full preterists believe that Satan was put in his final place of torment in AD 70 and evil continues to live on the earth for eternity; they say that evil still exists because it lives on in men’s hearts. This explanation of why evil is still around even though Satan is supposed to be in his final place of torment may satisfy full preterists but I don’t think it satisfies anyone else. The overwhelming majority of Christians would have a big problem with the full preterist contention that evil is to continue into eternity with no final end. Premillennial preterism says that Satan was bound or limited in his ability to deceive the nations at AD 70 and still awaits his final destruction. This explains why evil is still around, it also says that at a point in the future evil will be permanently banished from the universe (in the lake of fire, Rev. 20:10).
Russell said the following about the time at the end of the millennium (Rev. 20:7-10) when Satan is released before being put in his final place of confinement (the lake of fire).
“We must consequently regard this prediction of the loosing of Satan, and the events which follow, as still future, and therefore unfulfilled. We know of nothing recorded in history which can be adduced as in any way a probable fulfilment of this prophecy. Wetstein has hazarded the hypothesis that possibly it may symbolise (sic) the Jewish revolt under Barcochebas, [the Bar Kosiba War, 132-135 AD] in the reign of Hadrian; but the suggestion is too extravagant to be entertained for a moment.
There is an evident connection between this prophecy and the vision in Ezekiel concerning Gog and Magog (chaps. 38&39), which is equally mysterious and obscure. In both the scene of conflict is laid in the same place, the land of Israel; and in both the enemies of God meet with a signal and disastrous overthrow.”
Notice that Russell (unlike full preterists) puts the final destruction of Satan in the future. Russell was not working under the full preterist meta-hermeneutic that all prophecy had to be fulfilled by AD 70. When Russell was writing in 1878 there was no Israel and it didn’t appear there ever would be again. An invasion of the land of Israel is less “mysterious” in our day now that there is an Israel (after the flesh) to invade. See my article “A New Preterist Perspective” for my views on Israel and Gog and Magog (In a nutshell, I look for peace to come to the nation of Israel as Ezek. 38:8-11 says Israel would be dwelling in unwalled villages when the Gog and Magog attack happens, this would indicate her being at peace. How or exactly when this peace will happen I am not sure but it is coming. When peace finally does come to Israel then begin to keep an eye on Russia, as those are the conditions for the Gog and Magog invasion. Again see my article for more details).
Full preterists tend to spiritualize the Gog and Magog invasion (Rev. 20:7-10) and put it right before AD 70. Because of this are almost forced to say it is the same war as in Revelation 19:11-21. Notice some critical differences between the two wars, however. The Rev. 19 war features the beast and false prophet. In the Gog and Magog war they are absent. At the end of the Rev. 19 war the beast and false prophet are thrown into the lake of fire (Rev. 19:20). At the end of the Gog and Magog war Satan is thrown into the lake of fire where the beast and false prophet already are (Rev 20:10). This puts the Gog and Magog war after the Rev. 19 war. It explains why the beast and false prophet are not mentioned in the Gog and Magog war as that war happens after the Rev. 19 war (when they were put in the lake of fire). Since full preterists (correctly) put the Rev. 19 war at AD 70 there is no room for another major war (Gog and Magog) after it but before AD 70. Thus to end the millennium (which is when the Gog and Magog invasion happens) at AD 70 doesn’t fit.
To me the natural sequence of Revelation chapters 19 and 20 is the following. The Revelation 19:11-21 war happens at the one and only Parousia in AD 70. The beast and false prophet were put into the lake of fire at that time (Rev. 19:20) and Satan was bound for the millennium (Rev. 20:1). (Those who want the millennium to start at AD 30 say that at Revelation 20 the scenario goes back to AD 30, this is what is known as a “recapitulation.” I believe Revelation has recapitulations I just don’t see one at Rev. 20. I see Rev. 20 as continuing the description of what happens after the Second Coming which has been described in Rev. 19:11-21.) At the end of the millennium (which I believe we are in) Satan is loosed and gathers the nations for the Gog and Magog invasion. He is of course defeated (he didn’t have a chance, he was defeated at the cross) and then is thrown into the lake of fire where the beast and false prophet are waiting for him (Rev. 20:10). The full preterist position says the Satan, the beast and false prophet were all thrown into the lake of fire at the same time (AD 70). That is just not what Revelation 19 and 20 show.
It should be clear that while the similarities between full preterism and premillennial preterism are many, the differences are important. Among other things these differences affect how we should be living now. If Satan is still around (even though bound or limited) it would mean our reigning with Jesus should be more active then if he is totally off the scene for eternity. It is my belief that we are living in the time at the end of the millennium when Satan is loosed to deceive the world (see my article on the Preterist Archive, “A New Preterist Perspective”). I believe this is why we have seen such a rise of evil in the world in the last half of the 20th century. Spiritually speaking this is our world (the Christian’s); we need to be more active in our rule by prayer (corporate and individual) and sharing the good news of the Bible. Jesus won all power and authority in heaven and on earth at the cross (Matt. 28:18). That authority was fully transferred to His people at the Second Coming (the kingdom coming with power (Matt. 16:28; Mark 8:31& 9:1; Rev. 2:26) this was the beginning of the millennium. Pre-millennial futurists put the millennium in the future, full preterists put it in the past. The outcome of both of these positions is the same, inactivity. When is the last time you saw a full preterist article calling for more prayer? . Come to think of it when is the last time you saw any preterist article (full or partial) calling for more prayer? I am not saying they are not out there I just haven’t seen any. We need to be applying the authority that preterism (both full and partial) teaches we have. This authority is primarily implemented through prayer; the Christian army advances on its knees. Spiritually speaking this world is the Christians but just as the Children of Israel had to possess the Promised Land (which I am equating with entering the millennium in AD 70) we have to possess this world. When the children of Israel entered the Promised Land they were told “Every place on which the sole of your foot treads, I have given it to you” Joshua 1:3. I believe that is how it is for the Christian today, spiritually speaking this is our world but we need to be possessing it (by prayer and sharing God’s word). By the way the Children of Israel possessed the Promise Land by the sword, we turn the sword into a plowshare; we possess with the plowing (sowing God’s word) and reaping (“They shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks” Isaiah 2:4). Again the primacy of prayer in our rule with Jesus over the nations cannot be over emphasized.
Revelation 2:25-27 says that at AD 70, believers (at the church at Thyatira) would be given authority over the nations (while full prets. and partial prets. would disagree over which Coming of Jesus this is referring to I think both would agree the reference is to AD 70).
25. But hold fast what you have till I come.
26. And he who overcomes, and keeps My works until the end to him I will give power over the nations
27. He shall rule them with a rod of iron; they shall be dashed to pieces like the potter’s vessels’ as I also have received from My Father.
The “end” referred to in Rev. 2:26 is not the end of the world but the AD 70 end of the Old Covenant age Cf. Heb. 9:26; 1 Cor. 10:11, I think both full and partial preterists would agree on that also.
Revelation 3:20 & 21 also speaks of believers (at the church of Laodicea) sharing in Christ’s reign at His AD 70 Coming.
20. Behold I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with him, and he with Me.
21. To him who overcomes I will grant to sit with Me on My throne as I also overcame and sat down with My Father on His throne.
Again while full and partial preterists would disagree over whether these references (Rev. 2:26 & 3:21) to believers sharing in Jesus’ reign are speaking of the Second Coming or a judgment coming of Jesus on Israel both would agree that the time of the references is to AD 70. It is my position that these promises (given to those who overcome) of sharing in Christ’s AD 70 reign speak of the same sharing of Jesus’ reign that those who enter the millennium participate in (Rev. 20:4). Again the promises of Rev. 2:26 and 3:21 of sharing in Jesus’ authority and reign over the nations are clearly (to a preterist) AD 70 promises. Again I believe these promises corresponded to the AD 70 beginning of the millennium when judgment and authority were to be given to God’s people as they shared in Jesus’ reign. The millennial reign was being held out as a reward to those who stayed faithful to Jesus until his AD 70 (Second) Coming. “If we endure, we shall also reign with Him.” 2 Timothy2:12. Timothy, writing around AD 66, considered believers sharing in Jesus’ reign (the millennium) as a near but future event. If believers endured (to the Second Coming in AD 70) they would reign with Christ, this was the millennium (And they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years Rev. 20:4).
The things being promised to the seven churches (Rev. 2:1 to 3:22) in AD 65 (which is approximately when Revelation was written) were the blessings that were to be available at the Second Coming in AD 70. Towards the end of Revelation God reminds the hearers of the book of these promises (that were to happen at AD 70) that He had made to the overcomers in the seven churches (“He who overcomes will inherit these things…” Rev. 21:7 NASB). Again the reference of Revelation 21:7 is to the promises made to the seven churches at the beginning of the book (Rev. 2:1 to 3:22). These promises were made to those who would overcome, that is, those who would stay faithful to Jesus up to His AD 70 Second Coming. The believers of the seven churches were being told about the AD 70 promises so as to provide encouragement and incentive for them to remain faithful until that time (AD 70).
The believers at the church of Ephesus had been promised access to the tree of life. (“To him who overcomes I will give to eat from the tree of life, which is in the midst of the Paradise of God” Rev. 2:7). We see the tree of life in Rev. 22:2, to a full preterist access to the tree of life (which was in the New Jerusalem) was a clearly a promise that would have an AD 70 fulfillment.
The believers at the church at Pergamos were promised a new name (“To him who overcomes I will give… him a white stone, and on the stone a new name written which no one knows except him who receives it.” Rev. 2:17). This secret name corresponded to the secret name which Jesus had at His Second Coming (“He [Jesus] had a name that no one knew but Himself” Rev. 19:12). Again the promise given to the believers of having a new name was to have an AD 70 fulfillment. By the way the promise of a new name for the believer was not a promise of a new moniker, rather it was a promise of something new about their essence and/or position Cf. Gen.17:5. The point I want to make here is that this promise of a secret name was to have an AD 70 fulfillment just as we see Jesus with a secret name at His AD 70 Coming.
The believers at the church of Sardis were promised that they wouldn’t have their name blotted out of the book of life (“He who overcomes shall be clothed in white garments and I will not blot out his name from the Book of Life…” Rev. 3:5). The book of life speaks of one receiving eternal life at the judgment (Rev. 20:12), again to a full preterist the judgment in Rev. 20:12 is at AD 70, again a clear AD 70 promise.
The believers at the church of Philadelphia were promised a part in the New Jerusalem (“He who overcomes, I will make him a pillar in the temple of My God and he shall go out no more. I will write on him the name of My God and the name of the city of My God, the New Jerusalem, which comes down out of heaven from My God. And I will write on him My new name”. Rev. 3:12). Again full preterists correctly say that the blessedness of the New Jerusalem coming down to earth was an AD 70 event (Rev. 21:2).
The pattern of the promises given to the seven churches involved telling about the wonderful things that were going to happen at the AD 70 Second Coming and offering them as incentives to those who would stay faithful until that Coming. These AD 70 incentives were being held out to the seven churches because the believers of those churches would have to face the difficult times talked of in Revelation (persecution, the great tribulation, the mark of the beast etc.). Now consider the AD 70 incentives made to the churches at Smyrna, Thyatira and Laodicea, they were all promises that related to participating in the millennium. Remember the pattern of the promises offered to the seven churches was to present the blessings that would be available to those who stayed faithful until Jesus’ Coming in AD 70, this makes the millennial promises (and hence the millennium) AD 70 events.
The believers at the church of Smyrna were promised not to be hurt by the Second death (“He who overcomes shall not be hurt by the second” death Rev. 2:11). This promise is fulfilled in those who come alive for the millennium (“over such the second death has no power but they shall be priests of God and of Christ and shall reign with Him a thousand years” Rev. 20:6. The incentive offered to the church of Smyrna was to have an AD 70 fulfillment. This AD 70 incentive was to be fulfilled at the beginning of the millennium, that puts the millennium’s beginning at AD 70. If the millennium began in AD 30 then Jesus was promising the believers at Smyrna something they already had.
The believers at the church of Laodicea were promised to sit on Jesus’ throne, that is, they would share in His rule (“to him who overcomes I will grant to sit with Me on My throne, as I also overcame and sat down with My Father on His throne” Rev. 3:21). This AD 70 promise was a reference to believers sharing in Jesus’ rule, again this was to be fulfilled at the beginning of the millennium (“And I saw thrones and they sat on them and judgment was committed to them…and they lived and reigned with Christ for a thousand years” Rev. 20:4). Again the AD 70 promise to believers to share in Jesus’ rule was to be fulfilled at the AD 70 beginning to the millennium. If the millennium started at AD 30 Jesus was again promising something to believers that they already had, which would not be much of an incentive.
The believers at the church of Thyatira were also promised to share in Jesus’ AD 70 rule (“And he who overcomes, and keeps My works until the end, to him I will give power over the nations- He shall rule them with a rod of iron; They shall be dashed to pieces like the potter’s vessels- as I also have received from My Father.” Rev. 2:26&27). Again the “end” referred to here is the AD 70 end of the Old Covenant age. Cf. Matt. 13:36-50 (note the old King James Version mistranslated the Greek aion (which means age) in Matt. 13:36-50 as “world” the newer translations correct this mistake). The promise to believers at the church of Thyatira (which was to be fulfilled in AD 70) was of sharing in Jesus’ messianic rule. That promise was to be fulfilled in those who participate in the millennium {again indicating an AD 70 beginning of the millennium} (“Blessed and holy is he who has part in the first resurrection. Over such the second death has no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with Him a thousand years.” Rev. 20:6). Again, if the millennium began in AD 30 then Jesus’ promise to share in his messianic reign over the nations made little sense, as it would have been something the believers at Thyatira already had.
As I have said, the promises made to the seven churches were being given as incentives to encourage them to remain faithful to Jesus through the difficult times that were coming (between the writing of Revelation around AD 65 and the Second Coming in AD 70). These promises were to have an AD 70 fulfillment. In effect Jesus was saying, remain faithful to Me until My AD 70 Coming and these are the rewards you will get. To me the fact that three of the seven churches (Smyrna, Thyatira and Laodicea) were being offered AD 70 incentives that related to them entering the millennium is a clear indication of the millennium beginning in AD 70.
While I agree with full preterists that AD 30-70 was a transition period, I disagree with them that it was the time of the believers sharing in the millennial reign of Jesus. AD 30-70 was the “already but not yet” of the kingdom. With the ministry of Jesus the kingdom of God was in the midst of His hearers (Luke 17:21 NASB). The kingdom would come with full power (the millennium) in the lifetime (AD 70) of some of those listening to Jesus (Mark 8:38&9; Luke 9:27). This AD 70 coming of the kingdom with power, when believers would rule with Jesus (the millennium) can be seen in the following parable.
Luke 19:11-27
11 Now as they heard these things, He spoke another parable, because He was near Jerusalem and because they thought the kingdom of God would appear immediately. 12 Therefore He said: "A certain nobleman went into a far country to receive for himself a kingdom and to return. 13 So he called ten of his servants, delivered to them ten minas, and said to them, 'Do business till I come.' 14 But his citizens hated him, and sent a delegation after him, saying, 'We will not have this man to reign over us.' 15 And so it was that when he returned, having received the kingdom, he then commanded these servants, to whom he had given the money, to be called to him, that he might know how much every man had gained by trading. 16 Then came the first, saying, 'Master, your mina has earned ten minas.' 17 And he said to him, 'Well done, good servant; because you were faithful in a very little, have authority over ten cities.' 18 And the second came, saying, 'Master, your mina has earned five minas.' 19 Likewise he said to him, 'You also be over five cities.' 20 Then another came, saying, 'Master, here is your mina, which I have kept put away in a handkerchief. 21 For I feared you, because you are an austere man. You collect what you did not deposit, and reap what you did not sow.' 22 And he said to him, 'Out of your own mouth I will judge you, you wicked servant. You knew that I was an austere man, collecting what I did not deposit and reaping what I did not sow. 23 Why then did you not put my money in the bank, that at my coming I might have collected it with interest?' 24 And he said to those who stood by, 'Take the mina from him, and give it to him who has ten minas.' 25 (But they said to him, 'Master, he has ten minas.') 26 For I say to you, that to everyone who has will be given; and from him who does not have, even what he has will be taken away from him. 27 But bring here those enemies of mine, who did not want me to reign over them, and slay them before me.' "
Notice that this parable was told because the hearers of Jesus thought the kingdom of God was just about to come (what I would call an expectation of an AD 30 millennium). The kingdom of God would come (with full power) when the nobleman returned from the far country after receiving his kingdom (the Second Coming in AD 70). Notice the events that happen when this nobleman returns ( again symbolic of the Second Coming) there is the judgment of both the nobleman’s followers and the people who didn’t want the nobleman to rule over them (the Jews that rejected Jesus). The people who rejected the nobleman (the Jews who rejected Jesus) are destroyed at this point. A full preterist would correctly say these events are AD 70 events. This AD 70 beginning of the implementation of the nobleman’s rule when he returned from a far country was the AD 70 beginning of the millennium at the Second Coming Cf. 2 Timothy 4:1. Notice that this is the point that the servants share in the nobleman’s rule (“Well done good servant; because you were faithful in a very little, have authority over ten cities” Luke 19:17). This sharing in the rule of the nobleman’s (Jesus’) kingdom is what the millennium is all about (“And they lived and reigned with Christ for a thousand years” Rev. 20:4). To try and make the millennium start at AD 30 goes against meaning of the parable of the nobleman. There would be a delay of the full implementation of the kingdom. The kingdom was to come with full power at the Second Coming in AD 70 (Mark 8:38 & 9:1; Luke 9:27) that was the time that believer would share in Jesus’ rule, that was the beginning of the millennium. The followers of the nobleman would share in his rule at the time when the nobleman destroyed those who didn’t want him to rule over them (the Jews, “we have no king but Caesar” John 19:15). This was at the destruction of the Jewish nation at AD 70.
Traditional partial preterists have some trouble with this parable of the nobleman. They would probably say the nobleman’s coming and destroying the subjects that didn’t want him to rule over them was Jesus’ AD 70 coming in judgment on the Jews. That the judgment of the nobleman’s followers also happens at this time presents a real problem for their position as they say that that judgment is to happen at a future coming of Jesus. Look at the parable of the talents in Matthew 25:14-30 (which traditional partial preterists say should happen in the future) it is essentially the same as the one in Luke 19:11-27. Traditional partial preterists want to put Israel’s judgment at the AD 70 Parousia and the believers judgment at a future Parousia; the parable of the nobleman puts them at the same time (at the one and only Parousia at AD 70).
Again I agree with full preterists that AD 30-70 was a transition period, I even agree with them on most of the particulars of this period; I just disagree that this transition period was the millennium. The picture of the transition period of AD 30-70 was that of the wilderness journey of Israel. Jesus’ death on the cross in AD 30 fulfilled the feast of Passover. Just as the death of the Passover lamb set in motion the events that set the Children of Israel free from the bondage of Egypt, so Jesus’ death set believers free from the bondage of Satan’s kingdom (Heb. 2:14&15). Just as the children of Israel would spend 40 years in the wilderness before they reached the Promised Land so the first Christians would go through a 40-year wilderness journey before they entered the millennium. The millennium corresponded not to the 40-year wilderness journey but to entering the Promised Land. The writers of Hebrews (who I believe was Paul) used the analogy of Israel’s wilderness journey in speaking to his audience. He warned them not to fall in the wilderness as some of the children of Israel did (Hebrews 4:11). Paul uses the wilderness parallel in 1 Corinthians 10, he warns his readers of how many of the children of Israel were laid low in the wilderness, not making it to the Promised Land (1 Cor. 10:5&6). In 1 Corinthians 9:27 Paul says he even he was careful that after preaching to others that he should not be disqualified. This brings up a very important difference between the transition period of AD 30-70 and the millennium. Those that lived in the transition period (AD 30-70) could lose their salvation, those in the millennium can not (“over such the second death has no power” Rev. 20:6). Paul (during the transition period) said to his hearers “we have become partakers of Christ if we hold the beginning of our confidence steadfast to the end.” Heb. 3:14. Again the end is the end of the age, the Second Coming at AD 70. Paul was telling his hearers they were partakers of Christ if they were steadfast to the end Cf. Hebrews 6:4-6; 10:35-39. Consider how one of Jesus’ servants (the unprofitable one) is thrown into outer darkness at the Second Coming (Matt. 25:30). This need of staying faithful to the AD 70 end of the age was why God was constantly telling the seven churches that it was the one who overcame that would receive the promised blessings (Rev. 21:7). One of these promised AD 70 blessings was access to the tree of life (Rev. 2:7; 22:2). The promises to the churches Sardis (Rev. 3:5) and Smyrna (Rev. 2:11) highlight the point that one could lose his or her salvation during the AD 30-70 transition period.
Rev. 3:5 “He who overcomes shall be clothed in white garments, and I will not blot out his name from the Book of Life.”
Rev. 2:11 “He who overcomes shall not be hurt by the second death.”
The clear implication of these two promises is that those of the seven churches that didn’t overcome could have their names blotted out from the book of life and could be hurt by the second death (the lake of fire, Rev. 21:8) otherwise the promises are meaningless. The promise of Rev. 2:11 was that those who overcome and remain faithful to the AD 70 Coming (even if that faithfulness costs them their lives) would not be hurt by the second death. This AD 70 promise to the church of Smyrna made around AD 65 is fulfilled in those who come alive for the millennium.
Rev. 2:11 He who overcomes shall not be hurt by the second death.
Rev. 20:6 Blessed and holy is he who has part in the first resurrection. Over such the second death has no power, but they shall be priest of God and of Christ, and shall reign with Him a thousand years.
What was a future promise in AD 65 (of an AD 70 blessing) is a fulfilled promise for those who enter the millennium. Again that makes the millennium an AD 70 event not an AD 30 event.
Again believers during the transition period (AD 30-70) could lose their salvation (fall in the wilderness so to speak) those coming alive for the millennium could not. This fits the millennium beginning in AD 70 not AD 30. I praise God that we who are born again after AD 70 are among those who have access to the tree of life and can’t be hurt by the second death! I believe that Revelation 14:13 describes the blessedness of those born again after AD 70.
Rev. 14:13 Then I heard a voice from heaven saying to me, “Write: Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord from now on” Yes says the Spirit, that they may rest from their labors and their works follow them.
The “rest” that Paul had told his readers was coming (and exhorted them to be diligent to enter) at the Second Coming (Hebrews 4:1-11) has come in Revelation 13:14. Again we who are born after AD 70 (born into the millennium so to speak) are born into this rest, to this I say praise the Lord! Again those who enter the millennium receive a secure salvation as they can not be hurt by the second death (the lake of fire, Rev. 21:8), this fits an AD 70 beginning of the millennium not an AD 30 beginning.
I believe that the “1,000 years” of the millennium (Rev. 20:4) is symbolic of the Day of the Lord (“with the Lord one day is as a thousand years…” 2 Peter 3:8). The Day of the Lord was something that Peter saw as being very close but in the future from when he wrote 2 Peter (probably in the mid AD 60’s.). The Day of the Lord (which a 1,000 years would be a fitting symbol of) was to start at the Second Coming in AD 70 (2 Peter 3:10-13) this was the beginning of the “1000 years” of the millennium.
Full preterists try to make the millennium 40 years. One problem with this is that by far the most common symbolic use of the number 40 in the Bible is that of a time of trial and testing (in the Flood it rained for 40 days, the Children of Israel were 40 years in the wilderness, Jesus tested in the wilderness for 40 days, 40 minus 1 lashes {2 Cor. 11:24, the “minus 1” was so the punishment didn’t mistakenly go over 40} etc.)
“The period of forty days or years is an important one in Scripture and in Jewish tradition. As the church fathers observed, it is most often associated with hardship, affliction and punishment.” Leland Ryken ,et al, Dictionary of Biblical Imagery 305
A time associated with hardship, affliction and punishment is hardly a fitting symbol for the millennium. Those coming alive for the millennium are said to be “blessed” (Rev. 20:6). Forty years is not a very good number to represent a blessed period. Those entering the millennium had just come through the 40 years of testing (the wilderness transition period AD 30-70), the blessed period (the millennium) was to start at AD 70. Added to this, it is difficult to make the millennium last 40 years if one starts it in AD 30. One has to fit the “1,000 year” reign and the time Satan is released from the abyss at the end of the 1,000 years (Rev. 20:7-10) into the 40 year period. That makes the millennium less than forty years. Even if one somehow gets around this (by trying to start the millennium before AD 30 or making the time when Satan is loosed at its end extraordinarily short) and makes the millennium 40 years, as I said the number 40 is a lousy symbol for a blessed period such as the millennium. If one is going to say the 1,000 years of the millennium is a symbolic number (which I believe it is) one has to say what the 1000 years are symbolic of. As I have said I believe the 1000 years of the millennium are symbolic of the Day of the Lord (“with the Lord one day is as a thousand years…” 2 Peter 3:8). The Day of the Lord was to start at the Second Coming in AD 70 (2 Peter 3:8-13). I am not sure what full preterists would say the 1000 years of the millennium are symbolic of (some say it is symbolic of 40 which they connect with King David’s reign, but that doesn’t make sense).
I could write more, like, why did Peter say in the early 60’s AD that the devil was walking about like a roaring lion? That doesn’t sound like he was bound and in the abyss to me. Why does Paul (writing around 55 or 56 AD) refer to the devil as “the god of this age” (2 Corinthians 4:4) again that doesn’t sound very bound. Again I could write more but I think I have written enough for now.
To summarize: James Stuart Russell’s position was that the millennium began at AD 70 at the one and only Parousia. In the early 1970’s a shift occurred away from Russell’s premillennial preterism to full preterism. This shift was subsequently buried. I have endeavored to offer some reasons why I think this shift from Russell’s premillennial preterism to full preterism has resulted in some mistakes and needs to be reexamined. I have called for the use of the term “premillennial preterism” to differentiate Russell’s position from full preterism and traditional partial preterism. Like the full preterists Russell saw AD 70 as the time of the one and only Second Coming (the Parousia), like the partial preterists he did not see all the prophecy in the Bible as fulfilled at that time. Premillennial preterism agrees with the most of the tenants of full preterism (AD 70 was the time of the Second Coming, resurrection and judgment, we are currently in the New Jerusalem etc.). The main disagreement between premillennial preterism and full preterism is with the hermeneutic constraint of full preterists that all the prophecy in the Bible had to have been fulfilled by AD 70 and the outgrowth of this, that the millennium had to have ended by AD 70. Full preterists usually embrace Russell, they are not as enthusiastic about me when I elaborate on his position.
Russell’s book The Parousia should be required reading for any preterist. If one would like to read more of my thoughts I have the following articles on the partial preterist section of the Preterist Archive. (Russell can be found on the full preterist section of the Preterist Archive, while I am on the partial preterist section. This highlights the fact that premillennial preterism falls somewhere between the classifications of full preterism and traditional partial preterism). My articles are the following.
A New Preterist Perspective” In this article I discuss Israel, Gog and Magog and where I think we are now.
Revelation Chapter 12” In this article I discuss how Rev. 12 shows Satan being thrown to the earth when God’s people entered the wilderness period at AD 30 (not into the abyss at that time as the full preterist position would predict).
Was All The Prophecy In The Bible Fulfilled By AD 70?” In this article I examine Luke 21:22, one of the foundations of the “all fulfilled by AD 70” hermeneutic constraint of full preterism.
Revelation Book Of The Covenant Curses Of Leviticus And Deuteronomy.” In this article I look at the covenant curses of Leviticus and Deuteronomy and how they provide the background for many of the images in the Book of Revelation. One interesting thing God said was that after he had brought all the covenant curses on Israel and scattered them to the nations (which happened in AD 70) he would bring them back to the Land, even if it meant gathering them from the farthest parts under heaven (Deut. 30:1-10).
I am currently working on a book on the Antichrist/Beast. I have written 250 pages and have about 100 more pages to go. In the book I offer a different candidate for the beast than Nero. I am not going into the identity of my candidate right now but trust me the book will be a revelation (excuse the pun). By the way I am looking for a publisher if there are any out there.
Duncan McKenzie

70-1070AD 2 Peter 3: Understanding the Language of the Prophets

From: http://www.preteristcentral.com/p2_peter_3.htm

by Kurt Simmons

 
2 Peter 3
Understanding the Language of the Prophets
 
 
In this article we discuss the elements of 2 Peter 3, and decide they are not reference to the Mosaic law or temple ritual.
Obstacles to Understanding
There are only two or three truly difficult passages that serve as obstacles to full preterism. These are the “eschatological change” of 1 Cor. 15:51-55, the “rapture” of 1 Thess. 4:16, 17, and the language of “cosmic conflagration” in 2 Pet. 3:7-12. The chief difficulty of the first two passages is the tendency to assume that the catching away of living saints to heaven is or was to be substantially simultaneous with the resurrection of the dead. However, once that assumption is dispelled, it becomes clear that Paul is in fact describing the process by which the living are translated one-by-one at the time of death.
The chief difficulty with 2 Peter 3 is the tendency to take the language literally. This can be overcome by comparing Peter’s language with established usage in the Old Testament and providing a suitable explanation for the symbolism.
Comparing 2 Peter 3 with Old Testament Usage
The Old Testament passage that bears the greatest overall similarity to 2 Peter 3:10-12 is probably Isaiah 34:1-10. This is a prophecy of God’s judgment and wrath upon the nations of the ancient world, first by the Babylonians, then the Medes and Persians. The time of wrath is world-wide (“all nations”). However, while it the prophecy opens by announcing wrath upon all nations, it narrows as it progresses, bringing its focus to bear upon Edom (Bozrah, Idumea) for that nation’s part in helping destroy Jerusalem (see Obadiah 10-16).

 
2 Peter 3:10-12
 
Isaiah 34:1-10
 
But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up. Seeing then that all these things shall be dissolved, what manner of person ought ye to be in all holy conversation and godliness, looking for and hasting unto the coming day of God, wherein the heavens being on fire shall be dissolved, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat?
 
 
 
Come near, ye nations, to hear; and hearken, ye people: let the earth hear, and all that is therein; the world, and all things that come froth of it. For the indignation of the Lord is upon all nations, and his fury upon all their armies: he hath utterly destroyed them, he hath delivered them to the slaughter. Their slain also shall be cast out, and their stink shall come up out of their carcases, and the mountains shall be melted with their blood. And all the host of heaven shall be dissolved, and the heaven shall be rolled together as a scroll: and all their host shall fall down, as the leaf falleth off from the vine, and as a falling fig from the fig tree...for the Lord hat a sacrifice in Bozrah, and great slaughter in the land of Idumea...For it is the day of the Lord’s vengeance, and the year of recompences for the controversy of Zion. And the streams thereof shall be turned into pitch, and the dust thereof into brimstone, and the land thereof shall become burning pitch. It shall not be quenched night nor day; the smoke thereof shall go up for ever.
 

 
A list will reveal the following points of contact between these two prophecies:

 
2 Peter 3:10-12
 
Isaiah 34:1-10
 
Day of the Lord
Heavens & Earth
Heavens pass away
Earth burned
Heavens dissolved
 
Day of Vengeance
Heavens & Earth
Constellations dissolved
Mountains melt
Land turned to brimstone
Streams turned to pitch
Heavens dissolved
 

 
 
 
The merest consideration will show that the language of Isaiah is figurative and describes a time of world-wrath through the agency of men and nations, whose armies exact the vengeance of God. The points of contact between Isaiah and Peter should suffice to show that the latter is also figurative, and that Peter in no way intends us to understand that the physical cosmos would be consumed at Christ’s coming. Indeed, Peter all but says this very thing when he states that judgment he wrote about was for the “perdition of ungodly men” (v. 7). In other words, it is men who oppose the gospel that would be destroyed; appeal to the heavens and earth is merely the stuff of poetic apparatus. Here are two more passages for comparison. This time, let’s use a passage from Matthew:

 
Matthew 24:29, 30
 
Isaiah 13:9-13
 
Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken. And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.
 
 
Behold, the day of the Lord cometh, cruel both with wrath and fierce anger, to lay the land desolate: and he shall destroy the sinners thereof out of it. For the stars of heaven and the constellations thereof shall not give their light: the sun shall be darkened in his going forth, and the moon shall not cause her light to shine. And I will punish the world for their evil, and the wicked for their iniquity...Therefore I will shake the heaven, and the earth shall remove out of her place, in the wrath of the Lord of hosts and in the day of his fierce anger.
 
 

 
 
 
The Lord’s statements recorded by Matthew are almost exact quotes from Isaiah’s prophecy about the judgment God would visit upon Babylon and the world through the Mede-Persian Empire, which swept like a great storm from the Elam and the Black Sea in the north-east, to Egypt and Red Sea in the south-west, encompassing the whole civilized world. The points of contact between the two passages include the following:

 
Matthew 24:29, 30
 
Isaiah 13:9-13
 
Day of the Lord
Heavens & Earth
Sun & moon darkened
World punished
Heavens shaken, constellations fall
Christ comes in clouds
 
Day of the Lord
Heavens & Earth
Sun & moon darkened
World punished
Heavens shaken, earth moved
Lord comes in wrath
 
 

 
 
 
Let’s make one more comparison and then conclude. This time we will look at language from Ezekiel regarding God’s judgment upon Egypt by Babylon:

 
Luke 21:25-27
 
Ezekiel 30:3-19
 
And there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars; and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity; the sea and the waves roaring; men’s hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth: for the powers of heaven shall be shaken. And then shall they see the Son of man coming in a cloud with power and great glory.
 
The day is near, even the day of the Lord is near, a cloudy day; it shall be the time of the heathen. And the sword shall come upon Egypt, and great pain shall be in Ethiopia...And I will make the rivers dry, and sell the land into the hand of the wicked: and I will make the land waste, and all that is therein...I will set fire in Egypt: Sin shall have great pain, and No shall be rent asunder...At Tehphnehes also the day shall be darkened, when I shall break there the yoke of Egypt: and the pomp of her strength shall cease in her: as for her, a cloud shall cover her, and her daughters shall go into captivity.
 

 
 
Luke here repeats the prophecy recorded in Matthew’s account of the Olivet Discourse, but so expands the language as to make clear that much more than the fall of Jerusalem was involved in the wrath that would overtake the first-century world. In each of the passages compared, we find a day of the Lord, clouds, heavens and earth, stars moved out of their courses, fire, darkness and dread of doom. Yet, in each case the wrath was confined to men and nations, not the physical cosmos or its elements. Reading these together should make clear that 2 Pet. 3:10-12 is simply one more in the long line of hyperbolic speech used by the prophets to describe heaven’s rod upon a rebellious world.
 
What are the Heavens & Earth?
 
Having compared Peter with the prophets and seen that he continues a long established tradition of figurative speech in describing world events, let us next interpret his symbology.
Preterists have long held that the “heavens and earth” of 2 Pet. 3:10-12 are allusions to Judea and the Mosaic law. This is due to a tendency to interpret the eschaton solely in terms of the fall of Jerusalem (“locally and covenantally”). So many passages emphasize God’s wrath upon the Jews for the murder of Christ and persecution of the gospel that we tend to narrow our focus and overlook events in the rest of the Roman Empire. This is unfortunate. If there is anything that is clear it is that the second coming was a time of world-wrath, in no way confined to Palestine or the Jews. Daniel two and seven are second coming passages and do not mention the Jews at all. Many New Testament epistles speak of Christ’s coming and the saints’ need to be in readiness, which could have no meaning to churches in Europe and Asia if the second coming was limited to the fall of Jerusalem. Thessalonica was in the province of Macedonia, yet Paul told the church there that they would find relief from their persecutors at Christ’s coming (2 Thess 1:4-10). Paul told the Athenians, also in Europe, that God was “about to judge the world” through Jesus Christ (Acts 17:31). John wrote to the seven churches of Asia, exhorting them to abide faithful against Christ’s soon coming. These churches are a thousand miles from Jerusalem. Yet, Jesus told them that his coming would directly impact them. Finally, Peter’s epistle is written to churches in the vicinity of the Black Sea where Christians were suffering, or soon would suffer, persecution. How would the fall of Jerusalem help them? Wasn’t it rather the changes and alterations in the Roman government that would bring relief from their persecutions and not the fall of Jerusalem? These and other considerations argue forcibly against the notion that the second coming was somehow confined to Palestine.
What then do the “heavens and earth” symbolize? If we can think of the world like the canopy of heaven in which governments provide order to the world of men in the way that constellations are hung in the sky and regulate the cycles of nature and the revolution of seasons, we can see how the heavens and earth describe things social and political. The best explanation we have encountered for the symbolism of the heavens and earth is Sir Isaac Newton’s:
 
"The figurative language of the prophets is taken from the analogy between the world natural and an empire or kingdom considered as a world politic. Accordingly, the world natural, consisting of heaven and earth, signifies the whole world politic, consisting of thrones and people, or so much of it as is considered in prophecy; and the things in that world signify the analogous things in this. For the heavens and the things therein signify thrones and dignities, and those who enjoy them: and the earth, with the things thereon, the inferior people; and the lowest parts of the earth, called Hades or Hell, the lowest or most miserable part of them. Great earthquakes, and the shaking of heaven and earth, are put for the shaking of kingdoms, so as to distract and overthrow them; the creating of a new heaven and earth, and the passing of an old one; or the beginning and end of a world, for the rise and ruin of a body politic signified thereby. The sun, for the whole species and race of kings, in the kingdoms of the world politic; the moon, for the body of common people considered as the king's wife; the stars, for subordinate princes and great men; or for bishops and rulers of the people of God, when the sun is Christ. Setting of the sun, moon, and stars; darkening the sun, turning the moon into blood, and falling of the stars, for the ceasing of a kingdom." (Observations on the Prophecies of Daniel, Part i. chap. 2)
 

70-1070AD 2 Peter 3's "Day of the Lord" = "Thousand Years" of Revelation 20

It should be noted that, at the time of writing of both 2 Peter and Revelation around 62AD, the "Day of the Lord" and the "Thousand Years" were each regarded as events about to begin.  This rules against any theories of a Millennium that begins prior to 62AD. 

 

From:  BibleWheel.com

 

From: http://preterism.ning.com/photo/rev-20-2-peter-3

Revelation 20 and 2 Peter 3 are the Same Event.

1 Peter 1:1 church in asia
Rev 1:4 church in asia

1 Peter 2:9 made a preisthood
Rev 1:6, Rev 20:6 kingdom of priests

1 Peter 4:5 ready to judge living and the dead
Rev 11, and 20 judge the living and the dead

1 Peter 1:20 foundation of the world
Rev 13:8 foundation of the world

1 Peter 4:17 judge family of God
Rev 4 warnings against churches

1 Peter 5:13 Babylon
Rev 14, 16, 17, and 18 Babylon

1 Peter 5:8-10 resist Devil, suffer a little while
Rev 20:3 released for a short time

2 Peter 2:4 angels chains
Rev 20:1-3 chains

2 Peter 3:13 new heaven and new earth
Rev 20:11, Rev 21 heaven and earth flee, New heaven and earth

2 Peter 3:8 day a thousand years thousand years a day
Rev 20:2 thousand years

70-1070AD The Day of the Lord in Zechariah 14

From: http://preterism.ning.com/forum/topics/the-day-of-the-lord-in

by Duncan McKenzie
http://www.amazon.com/Antichrist-Second-Coming-Preterist-Examinatio...

The Day of the Lord in Zechariah 14

What makes the interpretation of many of the OT passages concerning the ultimate day of the Lord complicated is the mixture of physical and spiritual fulfillments. The destruction of the land of Israel and Jerusalem that these passages speak of ultimately refers to the destruction and desolation of the Jewish nation that took place in AD 70. This was the time of the great tribulation at the end of the old covenant age (Dan. 11:40-12:7). That nothing unholy (Is. 4:3; Zech. 14:21) nor any alien (Joel 3:17) would enter Jerusalem after this time is not talking about a ban on sinners and foreigners in the physical city of Jerusalem in some future millennial kingdom; it is talking about the New Jerusalem. It is the New Jerusalem bride (those who are part of the new covenant, cf. Rev. 21:9-10)1 that nothing unholy would be able to enter at this time. Only those in the Lamb’s Book of Life are part of her: “And they shall bring the glory and honor of the nations into it. But there shall by no means enter it anything that defiles or causes an abomination or a lie, but only those who are written in the Lamb’s Book of Life” (Rev. 21:27).

THE ULTIMATE DAY OF THE LORD IN ZECHARIAH 14

Zechariah 14 is one of those sections of Scripture that point exclusively to the ultimate day of the Lord. Chapter 14 says that on the day of the Lord the city of Jerusalem would be captured, its women raped (cf. Is. 3:16-4:6), and the invaders (the Romans) would divide up the spoil in Jerusalem’s midst. The defeat of physical Jerusalem would be so complete at this time that the invaders would feel perfectly secure in dividing up the spoils in the city itself:

Behold the day of the Lord is coming, and your spoil will be divided in your midst. For I will gather all the nations to battle against Jerusalem; the city shall be taken, the houses rifled and the women ravished. Half of the city shall go into captivity, but the remnant of the people shall not be cut off from the city.
Zechariah 14:1-2; cf. Matthew 24:36-44 2


It was at this time that God would come and deliver his true people, the remnant (Zech. 14:3-11). If God is talking about delivering physical Jerusalem in Zechariah 14 he was tragically late, as the city had been plundered and its inhabitants (as well as most of the land of Israel, cf. Zech. 13:8-9) desolated. All that was left in physical Jerusalem was a remnant of raped women (v. 2). It was not physical Jerusalem that would be delivered at this time (at AD 70) but the New Jerusalem bride. The bride was the meek and humble people who would be left in the midst of Jerusalem (cf. Zeph. 3:12; Matt. 5:5). It was the New Jerusalem bride that would no longer have unclean people in her from this time on (Zech. 14:20-21; cf. Rev. 21:27). Consistent with this, Paul said the New Jerusalem and her children would receive their inheritance at the time that Old Jerusalem and her children were cast out (Gal. 4:24-31). We are told that these “things are symbolic. For these are the two covenants . . .” v. 24.

Zechariah goes on in chapter 14 to say that after physical Jerusalem was thoroughly defeated God would come and fight for his people:

Then the Lord will go forth and fight against those nations, as when He fights on a day of battle. In that day His feet will stand on the Mount of Olives, which is in front of Jerusalem on the east; and the Mount of Olives will be split in its middle from east to west by a very large valley, so that half of the mountain will move toward the north and the other half toward the south. You will flee by the Valley of My mountains, for the valley of the mountains will reach to Azel; yes, you will flee just as you fled before the earthquake in the days of Uzziah king of Judah. Then the Lord, My God, will come, and all the holy ones with Him! In that day there will be no light; the luminaries will dwindle. For it will be a unique day which is known to the Lord, neither day nor night, but it will come about that at evening time there will be light.
Zechariah 14:3-7 NASB


This sequence is shown in Revelation 17-18 where the Antichrist is allowed to destroy harlot Babylon (i.e., Jerusalem; cf. Rev. 11:8). It is after the destruction of the great city (Rev. 17:18) that God comes with the armies of heaven and fights as on a day of battle (Zech. 14:3) against the beast and his armies. At this time God marries his New Jerusalem bride.

After these things [the destruction of the harlot in Rev. 17-18] I heard a loud voice of a great multitude in heaven, saying, “Alleluia! Salvation and glory and honor and power belong to the Lord our God! For true and righteous are His judgments, because He has judged the great harlot who corrupted the earth with her fornication; and He has avenged on her the blood of His servants shed by her.” . . . And I heard, as it were, the voice of a great multitude, as the sound on many waters and as the sound of mighty thunderings, saying “Alleluia! For the Lord God Omnipotent reigns! Let us be glad and rejoice and give Him glory, for the marriage of the Lamb has come and His wife has made herself ready” . . . Now I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse. And He who sat on him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness He judges and makes war . . . And the armies in heaven, clothed in fine linen, white and clean followed Him on white horses.
Revelation 19:1-2, 6-7, 11, 14; cf. 21:9-10


This sequence of God destroying the city of Jerusalem and then marrying his bride can be seen in Matthew 22:1-10. At AD 70 God would send his armies to burn up the city of those who rejected the invitation to his Son’s wedding (v. 7), and then the wedding would go forward with a new people (8-10). Most of physical Israel would be cast out at this time of the messianic banquet at the full establishment of God’s kingdom (Matt. 8:10-12).

PHYSICAL JERUSALEM VS. NEW JERUSALEM

Some will no doubt argue that for me to say that Zechariah 14:1 and part of verse 2 (up to and including the part about the women being raped) is talking about the AD 70 destruction of physical Jerusalem and the rest of the chapter’s references to Jerusalem speak of the deliverance of the New Jerusalem is an inconsistent hermeneutic. This is a legitimate concern; my interpretation does involve a switching from a physical fulfillment to a spiritual fulfillment in verse 2, from physical Jerusalem to the New Jerusalem (the raped women being in physical Jerusalem; the saved remnant in the New Jerusalem; cf. Matt. 24:32-51). I would not even dare to offer such an interpretation if it were not for the fact that the NT backs it up.

The Jerusalem in Zechariah 14:2 in which the raped women are found is clearly physical Jerusalem. According to the book of Revelation, however, the Jerusalem in Zechariah 14:8 that the “living waters” flow out of is the New Jerusalem, the bride (Rev. 21:9-10).

And in that day living waters will flow out of Jerusalem, half of them toward the eastern sea and the other half toward the western sea; it will be in summer as well as in winter. And the Lord will be king over all the earth; in that day the Lord will be the only one. All the land will be changed into a plain from Geba to Rimmon south of Jerusalem; but Jerusalem will rise and remain on its site from Benjamin’s Gate as far as the place of the First Gate to the Corner Gate, and from the Tower of Hananel to the king’s wine presses. People will live in it, and there will no longer be a curse, for Jerusalem will dwell in security.
Zechariah 14:8-11 NASB


Again, it is the New Jerusalem bride, not physical Jerusalem, which has these waters of life (Zech. 14:8; cf. Rev. 21:27-22:2). It is the New Jerusalem that would be raised up (on a mountain) at this time (Zech 14:10; cf. Rev. 21:9-10). It is the New Jerusalem in which there would “no longer be a curse” (Zech. 14:11 NASB; cf. Rev. 22:3).

Then one of the seven angels who had the seven bowls full of the seven last plagues came and spoke with me, saying, “Come here, I will show you the bride, the wife of the Lamb.” And he carried me away in the Spirit to a great and high mountain, and showed me the holy city, Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God . . . Then he showed me a river of the water of life, clear as crystal coming from the throne of God and of the Lamb, in the middle of its street. On either side of the river was the tree of life, bearing twelve kinds of fruit, yielding its fruit every month; and the leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations. There will no longer be any curse; and the throne of God and of the Lamb will be in it, and His bond-servants will serve Him; they will see His face, and His name will be on their foreheads. And there will no longer be any night; and they will not have need of the light of a lamp nor the light of the sun, because the Lord God will illumine them; and they will reign forever and ever.
Revelation 21:9-10; 22:1-5 NASB


It is the New Jerusalem bride that has the water of life flowing out of her, not physical Jerusalem (cf. John 4:10-14); it is the New Jerusalem that is the abode of the remnant (Zech. 14:2).

And it shall come to pass afterward that I will pour out My spirit on all flesh; your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions. And also on My menservants and on My maidservants I will pour out My Spirit in those days. And I will show wonders in the heavens and in the earth: Blood and fire and pillars of smoke. The sun shall be turned into darkness and the moon into blood, before the coming of the great and awesome day of the Lord. And it shall come to pass that whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved. For in Mount Zion and in Jerusalem there shall be deliverance, as the Lord has said, among the remnant whom the Lord calls.
Joel 2:28-32; cf. Acts 2:17-21


Thus, when the NT is figured into one’s interpretation of Zechariah 14 (something “literalists” consistently neglect to do),3 clearly there is a shift from the raped women of physical Jerusalem in verse 2 to the living waters of New Jerusalem in verse 8.

LIVING WATERS IN JERUSALEM

The living waters Zechariah prophesied of in Jerusalem at this time (Zech. 14:8) are of much deeper spiritual significance than a supposed future river in physical Jerusalem. The living waters that would flow out of the New Jerusalem on the day of the Lord symbolize the life-giving properties of God’s Holy Spirit. Consider Jesus’ reference to the ultimate meaning of the water used in the Feast of Tabernacles (the feast that Zech. 14:16-21 is referring to).

On the last day, that great day of the feast [of Tabernacles], Jesus stood and cried out, saying, “If anyone thirsts, let him come to Me and drink. He who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.” But this He spoke concerning the Spirit, whom those believing in Him would receive . . . .
John 7:37-39; cf. John 4:10-14


The living waters that flow from Jerusalem which Zechariah 14:8 speaks of are not composed of literal H2O in physical Jerusalem that will flow sometime in the future; they are symbolic of the life-giving properties of God’s Holy Spirit that are flowing today!

And behold I am coming quickly, and My reward is with Me, to give to every one according to his work . . . And the Spirit and the bride say, “Come!” And let him who hears say, “Come!” And let him who thirsts come. Whoever desires, let him take the water of life freely.
Revelation 22:12, 17; cf. Matthew 16:27-28


Similarly, the life-giving properties of water from rain that would be withheld from those who would not acknowledge the Lord from this time forward (Zech. 14:16-17) speak of the water of life that is withheld from those who are not part of the New Jerusalem bride today. To take verses 16-19’s statement about the nations of the world going up to Jerusalem to celebrate the Feast of Tabernacles in a literal physical sense is grossly misguided. It should be noted that Jesus taught just the opposite. He said the time was coming (and was already beginning) when people would no longer worship in Jerusalem:

Jesus said to her, “Woman, believe Me, the hour is coming when you will neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem, worship the Father. You worship what you do not know; we know what we worship, for salvation is of the Jews. But the hour is coming and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and in truth; for the Father is seeking such to worship Him. God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.”
John 4:21-24


Notice how Jesus talks about living water as a symbol of the life-giving properties of God’s Spirit in this context: “Whoever drinks of this [physical] water will thirst again, but whoever drinks of the water that I shall give him will never thirst. But the water that I shall give him will become in him a fountain of water springing up into everlasting life” (John 4:14).

Despite what many dispensationalists say, we are not going back to Temple worship in some future millennium; indeed it would be blasphemy to do so. For that matter, how, logistically, could hundreds of millions, let alone billions, of people all go up to the Temple to celebrate the Feast of Tabernacles/Ingathering? There are not nearly enough airlines in the world to physically get everyone to Jerusalem, let alone room for them when they arrived. Such thinking is foolishness! The ultimate sacrifice has been given by Jesus (cf. Heb. 10:11-18). God wants us to worship him in Spirit and in truth, not go back to the elemental things of the old covenant. The Jerusalem that people need to come to today for living water is the New Jerusalem; they need to become part of the bride (now wife)!
There is a crucial principle of hermeneutics here: the NT needs to be factored into one’s interpretation of the OT; often the interpretation that the NT gives is a spiritual one not a literal physical one. So-called literalists often neglect this principle.

THE MOUNT OF OLIVES SPLIT IN TWO?

As for Zechariah’s images of the Mount of Olives being split in two to make a large valley (vv. 4-5) and Jerusalem being raised in elevation (v. 10), these are yet more examples of the symbolism found in prophetic language. DeMar writes the following along these lines:

In Micah 1:3 we are told that God “is coming forth from His place” to “come down and tread on the high places of the earth.” How is this descriptive language different from the Lord standing on the Mount of Olives with the result that it will split? Micah says “the mountains will melt under Him, and the valleys will be split, like wax before the fire, like water poured down on a steep place” (1:4) . . . [Similarly] Isaiah 40:4 is descriptive of earth-moving events that did not literally take place.
Clear the way of the Lord in the wilderness; make smooth in the desert a highway for our God. Let every valley be lifted up, and every mountain and hill be made low; and let the rough ground become a plain, and the rugged terrain a broad valley. 4


In Revelation, when John is shown the New Jerusalem bride she comes down out of heaven to an elevated place, to a high mountain (Rev. 21:9-10; cf. Zech. 14:10). Jerusalem being in a high place speaks of both her prominence and her closeness to God (he actually dwells in the midst of his bride today, Rev. 21:1-3; cf. 2 Cor. 6:16). Her elevation is no more literal than the whole world becoming a mountain at the AD 70 full establishment of God’s kingdom in Daniel 2:35, Daniel 2:44.

Daniel and Revelation both use symbolic changes in geography to portray this time of the full establishment of God’s kingdom on earth. When the New Jerusalem comes down out of heaven, the sea ceases to exist (Rev. 21:1-2). If literal, this would be catastrophic, as we get most of our rain from the oceans. Without the sea this planet would quickly become a desert wasteland. What Revelation is portraying is that at AD 70 the whole world became the Land (i.e., the Holy Land) as the sea (the domain of the serpent, cf. Is. 27:1; 51:9-10; and abode of the Gentiles, Is. 60:5) ceased to exist at that time.5 This is the symbolic language of apocalyptic Scripture. Just as the mountains did not literally melt nor the valleys literally split at the coming of God against the northern kingdom of Israel in the eighth century BC (Mic. 1:1-6), neither did the Mount of Olives literally split in two at God’s coming on the ultimate day of the Lord at AD 70 (Zech. 14:4-5).

As to what the splitting of the Mount of Olives symbolizes, I believe the seventeenth-century Puritan Matthew Henry was on the right track:

These verses are dark and hard to be understood; but divers good expositors take this to be the meaning of them: God will carefully inspect Jerusalem, even then when the enemies of it are laying it waste: His feet shall stand in that day upon the mount of Olives, whence he may take a full view of the city and temple, Mk. 13:3 . . . The partition-wall between Jews and Gentiles shall be taken away. The mountains about Jerusalem, and particularly this [the Mount of Olives], signified it to be an enclosure, and that it stood in the way of those who would approach to it. Between the Gentiles and Jerusalem this mountain of Bether, of division, stood, Cant. 2:17. But by the destruction of Jerusalem this mountain shall be made to cleave in the midst, and so the Jewish pale shall be taken down, and the church laid in common with the Gentiles, who were made one with the Jews by the breaking down of this middle wall of partition, Eph. 2:14. Who art thou, O great mountain? . . . A new and living way shall be opened to the new Jerusalem, both to see it and to come into it. The mountain being divided, one-half towards the north and the other half towards the south, there shall be a very great valley, that is, a broad way of communication opened between Jerusalem and the Gentile world, by which the Gentiles shall have free admission into the gospel-Jerusalem, and the word of the Lord, that goes forth from Jerusalem, shall have a free course into the Gentile world. Thus the way of the Lord is prepared, for every mountain and hill shall be brought low, and plain and pleasant valleys shall come in the room of them, Isa. 40:4. 6

Henry’s suggestion that the Mount of Olives splitting speaks of the wall of partition between Jew and Gentile being broken down fits well with the symbol of the sea (the abode of the Gentiles) ceasing to exist and the whole world becoming the Land at AD 70 (Rev. 21:1-2).

Finally, as I noted in my discussion of Daniel 12, the feast of Tabernacles/Ingathering that Zechariah 14 refers to was the last feast in Israel’s yearly cycle. It symbolized the ingathering of God’s people at the end of the old covenant age (cf. Matt. 13:36-43). I believe this feast was fulfilled in AD 70, 1,335 days after the coming of Titus to the Holy Land (the abomination of desolation, cf. Dan. 9:27), Daniel 12:6-12. Believers were gathered into the New Jerusalem (i.e., into the fullness of the new covenant) at this time (cf. Matt. 3:7-12; 24:15-34). This was the time of the full establishment of God’s kingdom, the time when the Lord exercised his kingship over “all the earth” (Zech. 14:9; cf. Dan. 2:44-45; Dan. 7:21-22, 27; Matt. 16:27-28; Rev. 11:15-18).

Endnotes:
1. New Jerusalem is not a physical city. It is not a giant cube in the sky that God’s people live in (its length, breadth, and height are all said to be equal, Rev. 21:16); rather, it is a symbol of the totality of God’s faithful old and new covenant people (Rev. 21:12-14). That the New Jerusalem is cube-shaped is symbolic; the “city” is in the shape of a cube just as the holy of holies in the Temple was cube-shaped (1 Kings 6:20). The New Jerusalem is shaped like the holy of holies to symbolize that God’s presence dwells there (Rev. 21:1-3). The New Jerusalem is the Jerusalem that nothing unclean would enter after Jesus’ parousia (Rev. 21:27; 22:14-15). This is the Jerusalem whose walls would be called “Salvation” and her gates “Praise” (Is. 60:18). This is the Jerusalem that is the “mother” of those who are part of the new covenant (Gal. 4:26; cf. Is. 66:7-13). This is the Jerusalem that her sons and daughters (which would include Gentiles) would be gathered to on the ultimate day of the Lord (Is. 60; 66). This is the Jerusalem that God would be a wall of fire around (Zech. 2:4-5). This was the Jerusalem that no foreigner or anybody who was not holy would ever set foot in again (Joel 3: 17; Zech. 14:20-21; Rev. 21:9-10, 23-27). For a discussion of the concept of the New Jerusalem as a symbol of God’s people see Robert H. Gundry, “The New Jerusalem: People as Place, not Place for People,” Novum Testamentum XXIX, 3 (1987), 257.

2. I believe that Jesus’ reference to one being taken from Jerusalem and one left in Matthew 24:36-44 alludes to the reference to half taken and half left in Zechariah 14:2. The half left refers to the remnant who are left in the New Jerusalem.

3. This discussion brings up an important principle of hermeneutics: the NT is the final interpreter and authority on the meaning of a given OT passage. One has to integrate the NT in one’s interpretation of the OT. Dispensationalists are notorious for ignoring this principle. Too often it conflicts with their literal physical interpretations of Scripture. Dispensationalists usually say that Zechariah 14 is talking about physical changes in geography that will happen in earthly Jerusalem at some time in the future (e.g., the Mount of Olives split in two in v. 4; a life-giving river in v. 8). They see this as the time of the millennium, a time when Jesus will literally sit on David’s throne and physically rule over the world from Israel.

4. Gary DeMar, Last Days Madness: Obsession of the Modern Church, 4th ed., 441.

5. This is not teaching any kind of universalism. While the whole world became the kingdom of God at AD 70 (Dan. 7:21-27; Rev. 11:15-18) everybody is not part of the kingdom. In the first century, Rome ruled most of the then known world. Just because a person lived in the Roman Empire, however, did not mean he was necessarily a citizen of the Roman kingdom; indeed most were not. The citizens of the kingdom of God are those who are part of the New Jerusalem bride. These are the ones with access to the tree and water of life (Rev. 22:1-3, 14-15). To be a citizen of the kingdom of God one must come to the Lord (Rev. 22:17).

6. Matthew Henry, "Commentary on Zechariah 14," Matthew Henry Complete Commentary on the Whole Bible Crosswalk.com, http://bible.crosswalk.com/Commentaries/MatthewHenryComplete/mhc-co....


The sun being darkened is often used in the context of God judging a nation.

EZEKIEL 30, 32: THE DAY OF THE LORD ON EGYPT

Ezekiel 30 speaks of a day of the Lord in the context of the armies of Babylon invading and defeating Egypt (“For the day is near, even the day of the Lord is near; it will be a day of clouds . . . The sword shall come upon Egypt,” Ezek. 30:3-4; cf. Jer. 46). In Ezekiel 32 God talks of how he would fight against Egypt using the Babylonians as his “net’ to capture them and as his “sword” to destroy them.

And it came to pass in the twelfth year, in the twelfth month, on the first day of the month, that the word of the Lord came to me, saying, “Son of man, take up a lamentation for Pharaoh king of Egypt, and say to him: ‘You are like a young lion among the nations, and you are like a monster in the seas, bursting forth in your rivers, troubling the waters with your feet, and fouling their rivers.’ Thus says the Lord God: ‘I will therefore spread My net over you with a company of many people and they will draw you up in My net. Then I will leave you on the land; I will cast you out on the open fields, and cause to settle on you all the birds of the heavens, and with you I will fill the beasts of the whole earth. I will lay your flesh on the mountains, and fill the valleys with your carcass. I will also water the land with the flow of your blood, even to the mountains; and the riverbeds will be full of you. When I put out your light, I will cover the heavens, and make its stars dark; I will cover the sun with a cloud, and the moon shall not give her light. All the bright lights of the heaven I will make dark over you, and bring darkness upon your land,’ says the Lord God. ‘I will also trouble the hearts of many peoples, when I bring your destruction among the nations, into the countries which you have not known. Yes, I will make many peoples astonished at you, and their kings shall be horribly afraid of you when I brandish My sword before them; and they shall tremble every moment, every man for his own life, in the day of your fall.’ For thus says the Lord God: ‘the sword of the king of Babylon shall come upon you. By the swords of the mighty warriors, all of them the most terrible of the nations, I will cause your multitude to fall. They shall plunder the pomp of Egypt, and all its multitude shall be destroyed. Also I will destroy all its animals from beside its great waters; the foot of man shall muddy them no more, nor shall the hooves of animals muddy them. Then I will make their waters clear, and make their rivers run like oil,’ says the Lord God. ‘When I make the land of Egypt desolate and the country is destitute of all that once filled it, when I strike all who dwell in it, then they shall know that I am Lord.’”
Ezekiel 32:1-15

The day of the Lord on Egypt would be a day of darkness (v. 8); in Ezekiel 30:3 it is said to be “a day of clouds.” God said he would darken the sun, moon, and stars at this time of his judgment on Egypt, c. 568 BC (Ezek. 32:7), that he would bring darkness to its land (cf. Rev. 16:10). Clearly this was not talking about the physical darkening of the luminary objects in the sky; it is symbolic language used to describe the judgment of the Egyptian Empire in the sixth century BC.

ISAIAH 13: THE DAY OF THE LORD ON BABYLON

Isaiah 13 talks of a day of the Lord (“Wail, for the day of the Lord is at hand . . . .” v. 6) in the context of the armies of the Medes overthrowing the Babylonian Empire in 539 BC.

Behold the day of the Lord comes, cruel, with both wrath and fierce anger, to lay the land desolate; and He will destroy its sinners from it. For the stars of heaven and their constellations will not give their light; the sun will be darkened in its going forth, and the moon will not cause its light to shine . . . Therefore I will shake the heavens, and the earth will move out of her place, in the wrath of the Lord of hosts and in the day of His fierce anger . . . Behold I will stir up the Medes against them, who will not regard silver; and as for gold, they will not delight in it. Also their bows will dash the young men to pieces, and they will have no pity on the fruit of the womb. And Babylon, the glory of the kingdoms, the beauty of the Chaldean pride, will be as when God overthrew Sodom and Gomorrah.
Isaiah 13:9-10, 13, 17-19

Notice the imagery that Isaiah uses for the judgment of the Babylonian Empire: it would involve pain as a woman in childbirth (Is. 13:8; cf. Matt. 24:8 NASB; 1 Thess. 5:3). The sun, moon, and stars would not shine (Is. 13:10; cf. Matt. 24:29). God would shake the heavens and earth (v. 13; cf. Matt. 24:29). Obviously the sun, moon, and stars did not literally quit shining at this time that the Medes overthrew the Babylonians. The planet did not shake at this time. Similar to Ezekiel, Isaiah is using images of celestial and terrestrial upheaval to describe God bringing one nation (the Medes) against another (the Babylonians) to exercise his judgment.

It should be noted that Jesus borrowed from this language describing the fall of Babylon in his prophecy of the fall of Jerusalem: “But in those days, after that tribulation, the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light; the stars of heaven will fall, and the powers in the heaven will be shaken” (Mark 13:24-25). Wright had the following comments on this: “All this language [in Mark 13:24-25] refers to the fall of Jerusalem, which is to be understood against the scriptural background of the predicted destruction of Babylon.”[Jesus and the Victory of God, 321] Jerusalem had gone from being the persecuted to being the persecutor. She had destroyed God’s ultimate Temple, Jesus (John 2:18-22), and was persecuting God’s people; she had become like pagan Babylon (cf. Rev. 11:8; 17:18). Jesus’ use of this language of cosmic catastrophe to describe the fall of the Jewish nation is no more a literal description of the end of the universe than Scripture’s use of it to describe the sixth-century BC fall of Babylon.

This imagery of the darkening of the sun to indicate the darkening of a kingdom can be seen in Revelation as well. Consider Revelation 16:10, “Then the fifth angel poured out his bowl on the throne of the beast, and his kingdom became full of darkness; and they gnawed their tongues because of the pain.” This is not talking about a literal eclipse of the sun that creates darkness; it is talking about the eclipse of a ruler and a kingdom (cf. Ezek. 32:7-8). This judgment is poured out on the throne of the beast. It is referring to how darkness came upon the Roman Empire in AD 68 with the death of Nero. Nero’s death left Rome in the dark; for the next year and a half she would go through a period of confusion and uncertainty. During this time two back-to-back civil wars would be fought as the empire came to the verge of collapse. Vespasian finally brought stability back to the empire when he became emperor at the end of AD 69.

The disagreements between futurists and preterists to a large extent boil down to a disagreement on hermeneutics, how the prophetic/apocalyptic sections of Scripture are to be interpreted. The literalist who says these pictures of cosmic catastrophe are to happen in a literal physical sense needs to examine how they are used in the rest of Scripture (e.g. Dan. 8:10, 24; Rev. 12:3-4)