John the Baptist 27 AD "The Kingdom of Heaven is at hand." (Matthew 3:2) 27 AD "Who warned you to flee from the wrath about to come?" (Matthew 3:7) 27 AD "The axe is already laid at the root of the trees." (Matthew 3:10) 27 AD "His winnowing fork is in His hand." (Matthew 3:12) 27 AD "The kingdom of heaven is at hand." (Matthew 4:17) 27 AD "The kingdom of God is at hand." (Mark 1:15) 27 AD “Who warned you to flee from the wrath about to come?” (Luke 3:7) 27 AD “The axe is already laid at the root of the trees. " (Luke 3:9) 27 AD "His winnowing fork is in His hand…." (Luke 3:17) Jesus the Christ 28 AD "The kingdom of heaven is at hand." (Matthew 10:7) 28 AD "You shall not finish going through the cities of Israel, until the Son of Man comes." (Matthew 10:23) 28 AD "....the age about to come." (Matthew 12:32) 28 AD “The kingdom of God has come near to you.” (Luke 10:9) 28 AD “The kingdom of God has come near.” (Luke 10:11) 30 AD "The Son of Man is about to come in the glory of His Father with His angels; and will then recompense every man according to his deeds." (Matthew 16:27) 30 AD "There are some of those who are standing here who shall not taste death until they see the Son of Man coming in His kingdom." (Matthew 16:28; cf. Mark 9:1; Luke 9:27) 30 AD "'When the owner of the vineyard comes, what will he do to those vine-growers?' '....He will bring those wretches to a wretched end, and will rent out the vineyard to other vine-growers, who will pay him the proceeds at the proper seasons.' '....Therefore I say to you, the kingdom of God will be taken away from you, and be given to a nation producing the fruit of it.' ....When the chief priests and the Pharisees heard His parables, they understood that He was speaking about them." (Matthew 21:40-41,43,45) 30 AD "This generation will not pass away until all these things take place." (Matthew 24:34) 30 AD "From now on, you [Caiaphas, the chief priests, the scribes, the elders, the whole Sanhedrin] shall be seeing the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of Power, and coming on the clouds of heaven." (Matthew 26:64; Mark 14:62; Luke 22:69) 30 AD "What will the owner of the vineyard do? He will come and destroy the vine-growers, and will give the vineyard to others. ....They [the chief priests, scribes and elders] understood that He spoke the parable against them." (Mark 12:9,12) 30 AD "This generation will not pass away until all these things take place.” (Mark 13:30) 30 AD “What, therefore, will the owner of the vineyard do to them? He will come and destroy these vine-growers and will give the vineyard to others." …The scribes and the chief priests …understood that He spoke this parable against them.” (Luke 20:15-16,19) 30 AD “These are days of vengeance, in order that all things which are written may be fulfilled.” (Luke 21:22) 30 AD "This generation will not pass away until all things take place.” (Luke 21:32) 30 AD "Daughters of Jerusalem, stop weeping for Me, but weep for yourselves and for your children. For behold, the days are coming when they will say, 'Blessed are the barren, and the wombs that never bore, and the breasts that never nursed.' Then they will begin to say to the mountains, 'Fall on us,' and to the hills, 'Cover us.'” (Luke 23:28-30; Compare Revelation 6:14-17) 30 AD "I will come to you. …In that Day you shall know that I am in My Father, and you in Me, and I in you.' …'Lord, what then has happened that You are about to disclose Yourself to us, and not to the world?'" (John 14:18,20,22) 30 AD "If I want him to remain until I come, what is that to you?" (John 21:22) The Disciples 30 AD "We were hoping that He was the One who is about to redeem Israel.” (Luke 24:21) Paul the Apostle to the Gentiles 52 AD “…we who are alive, and remain until the coming of the Lord… …We who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds… …You, brethren, are not in darkness, that the Day should overtake you like a thief.” (1 Thessalonians 4:15,17; 5:4) 52 AD “May your spirit and soul and body be preserved complete, without blame at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.” (1 Thessalonians 5:23) 52 AD “It is only just for God to repay with affliction those who afflict you, and to give relief to you who are afflicted and to us as well when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with His mighty angels in flaming fire.” (2 Thessaloniams 1:6-7) 56 AD “The time has been shortened.” (1 Corinthians 7:29) 56 AD “The form of this world is passing away.” (1 Corinthians 7:31) 56 AD “Now these things …were written for our instruction, upon whom the ends of the ages have come.” (1 Corinthians 10:11) 56 AD “We shall not all fall sleep, but we shall all be changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet; for the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we shall be changed.” (1 Corinthians 15:51-52) 56 AD "Maranatha!" [The Lord comes!] (1 Corinthians 16:22) 56 AD “Godliness …holds promise for the present life and that which is about to come.” (1 Timothy 4:8) 56 AD “I charge you …that you keep the commandment without stain or reproach until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ.” (1 Timothy 6:14) 56 AD “…storing up for themselves the treasure of a good foundation for that which is about to come, so that they may take hold of that which is life indeed.” (1 Timothy 6:19) 57 AD “He has fixed a day in which He is about to judge the world in righteousness…” (Acts 17:31) 58 AD “Not for [Abraham's] sake only was it written, that [faith] was reckoned to him [as righteousness], but for our sake also, to whom it is about to be reckoned.” (Romans 4:23-24) 58 AD “If you are living according to the flesh, you are about to die.” (Romans 8:13) 58 AD “I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that is about to be revealed to us.” (Romans 8:18) 58 AD "It is already the hour for you to awaken from sleep; for now salvation is nearer to us than when we believed. The night is almost gone, and the day is at hand." (Romans 13:11-12) 58 AD “The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet.” (Romans 16:20) 60 AD “There is about to be a resurrection of both the righteous and the wicked.” (Acts 24:15) 60 AD “As he was discussing righteousness, self-control and the judgment about to come…" (Acts 24:25) 61 AD "...not only in this age, but also in the one about to come.” (Ephesians 1:21) 61 AD “In the last days difficult times will come. For men will be lovers of self… …Avoid these men. For of these are those who enter into households and captivate weak women… …These also oppose the truth… …But they will not make further progress; for their folly will be obvious to all…” (2 Timothy 3:1-2,5-6,8-9) 61 AD “I solemnly charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who is about to judge the living and the dead…” (2 Timothy 4:1) 62 AD “The Lord is near.” (Philippians 4:5) 62 AD "The gospel …was proclaimed in all creation under heaven." (Colossians 1:23; Compare Matthew 24:14; Romans 10:18; 16:26; Colossians 1:5-6; 2 Timothy 4:17; Revelation 14:6-7; cf. I Clement 5,7) 62 AD “…things which are a shadow of what is about to come.” (Colossians 2:16-17) 63 AD “God, after He spoke long ago to the fathers in the prophets in many portions and in many ways, in these last days has spoken to us in His Son.” (Hebrews 1:1-2) 63 AD “Are they not all ministering spirits, sent out to render service for the sake of those who are about to inherit salvation?” (Hebrews 1:14) 63 AD “He did not subject to angels the world about to come.” (Hebrews 2:5) 63 AD “…and have tasted …the powers of the age about to come.” (Hebrews 6:5) 63 AD "For ground that drinks the rain which often falls upon it and brings forth vegetation useful to those for whose sake it is also tilled, receives a blessing from God; but if it yields thorns and thistles, it is worthless and near a curse, and it's end is for burning.” (Hebrews 6:7-8) 63 AD “When He said, 'A new covenant,' He has made the first obsolete. But whatever is becoming obsolete and growing old is ready to disappear.” (Hebrews 8:13) 63 AD “The Holy Spirit is signifying this, that the way of the [heavenly] Holy Places has not yet been revealed, while the outer tabernacle is still standing, which is a symbol for the present time. Accordingly both gifts and sacrifices are offered which cannot make the worshiper perfect in conscience, since they relate only to food and drink and various washings, regulations for the body imposed until a time of reformation.” (Hebrews 9:8-10; Compare Galatians 4:19; Ephesians 2:21-22; 3:17; 4:13) 63 AD “But when Christ appeared as a high priest of the good things about to come…” (Hebrews 9:11) 63 AD “Now once at the consummation of the ages He has been manifested to put away sin.” (Hebrews 9:26) 63 AD “For the Law, since it has only a shadow of the good things about to come…” (Hebrews 10:1) 63 AD “…as you see the Day drawing near.” (Hebrews 10:25) 63 AD “…the fury of a fire which is about to consume the adversaries.” (Hebrews 10:27) 63 AD “For yet in a very little while, He who is coming will come, and will not delay.” (Hebrews 10:37) 63 AD “For here we do not have a lasting city, but we are seeking the one that is about to come.” (Hebrews 13:14) Peter the Apostle to the Circumcision 30 AD “This is what was spoken of through the prophet Joel: 'And it shall be in the last days…'” (Acts 2:16-17) 62 AD “…salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.” (1 Peter 1:5) 62 AD “He …has appeared in these last times for the sake of you.” (1 Peter 1:20) 62 AD “In the last days mockers will come. …For this they willingly are ignorant of…” (1 Peter 3:3,5) 62 AD “They shall give account to Him who is ready to judge the living and the dead.” (1 Peter 4:5) 62 AD “The end of all things is at hand; therefore, be of sound judgment and sober spirit for the purpose of prayer.” (1 Peter 4:7) 62 AD "For it is time for judgment to begin with the household of God.” (1 Peter 4:17) 62 AD “…as your fellow elder and witness of the sufferings of Christ, and a partaker also of the glory that is about to be revealed.” (1 Peter 5:1) 62 AD “We have the prophetic word …which you do well to pay attention as to a lamp shining in a dark place, until the Day dawns and the morning star arises in your hearts.” (2 Peter 1:19) 62 AD “Their judgment from long ago is not idle, and their destruction is not asleep.” (2 Peter 2:3) 62 AD “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. Since all these things are to be destroyed in this way, what sort of people ought you to be in holy conduct and godliness, looking for and hastening the coming of the day of God.” (2 Peter 3:10-12) James 62 AD "Speak and so act, as those who are about to be judged by the law of liberty." (James 2:12) 62 AD “Come now, you rich, weep and howl for your miseries which are coming upon you. …It is in the last days that you have stored up your treasure!” (James 5:1,3) 62 AD “Be patient, therefore, brethren, until the coming of the Lord.” (James. 5:7) 62 AD “You too be patient; strengthen your hearts, for the coming of the Lord is at hand.” (James. 5:8) Jude the brother of James 62 AD “For certain persons have crept in unnoticed, those who were long beforehand marked out for this condemnation. …About these also Enoch …prophesied, saying, 'Behold, the Lord came with many thousands of His holy ones, to execute judgment upon all, and to convict all the ungodly…'” (Jude 1:4,14-15) 62 AD “But you, beloved, ought to remember the words that were spoken beforehand by the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ, that they were saying to you, 'In the last time there shall be mockers, following after their own ungodly lusts.' These are the ones who cause divisions…” (Jude 1:17-19) John the Apostle whom Jesus loved 62 AD “The darkness is passing away, and the true light is already shining.” (1 John 2:8) 62 AD “The world is passing away, and its desires.” (1 John 2:17) 62 AD “It is the last hour.” (1 John 2:18) 62 AD “Even now many antichrists have arisen; from this we know that it is the last hour.” (1 John 2:18; Compare Matthew 24:23-34) 62 AD “This is that of the antichrist, of which you have heard that it is coming, and now it is already in the world.” (1 John 4:3; Compare 2 Thessaloniams 2:7) 63 AD “…to show to His bond-servants, the things which must shortly take place.” (Revelation 1:1) 63 AD “The time is near.” (Revelation 1:3) 63 AD “Nevertheless what you have, hold fast until I come.” (Revelation 2:25) 63 AD “I also will keep you from the hour of testing which is about to come upon the whole world.” (Revelation 3:10) 63 AD “I am coming quickly.” (Revelation 3:11) 63 AD “And she gave birth to a son, a male child, who is about to rule all the nations with a rod of iron.” (Revelation 12:5) 63 AD "And in her [the Great City Babylon] was found the blood of prophets and of saints and of all who have been slain on the earth." (Revelation 18:24; Compare Matthew 23:35-36; Luke 11:50-51) 63 AD “…to show to His bond-servants the things which must shortly take place.” (Revelation 22:6) 63 AD "Behold, I am coming quickly. " (Revelation 22:7) 63 AD "Do not seal up the words of the prophecy of this book, for the time is near." (Revelation 22:10; Compare Daniel 8:26) 63 AD "Behold, I am coming quickly.” (Revelation 22:12) 63 AD "Yes, I am coming quickly." (Revelation 22:20)

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)