O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?
I want to say first I am not opposed to a past millennium in fact if I could be convinced of it, it would be much cleaner eschatological paradigm. The text of the book of Revelation appears to mitigate against it. I have asked several FP with no exegetical response. So I post it here for some sound exegesis that would change my mind from what appears to be the obvious. Please for the sake of this exchange let us stay within the Text of Revelation and exegete this text before going outside the book to other books in the N.T. I do think Russell has done the best exposition of Rev. that I have seen. His one issue that to him was baffling was the rest of the dead 20:5 which will be addressed in my comments. Here is my issue there are several future tenses to Christ and the saints ruling over the nations. 3:21, 5:10, 12:5 Which says he is about to reign. ( I do not believe ch. 12 is a flashback see Russell here) 19:15 Christ will rule over the nation pointing to 20:1-4. These future tenses seem to demand that the events of Ch. 20 come after these references? Add to this that 19:21 speaks of the Rest being slain by the sword which is the same group as the Rest of the dead who lived not during the 1000 years 20:5 ( this solves Russell's dilemma. Same Greek word for the Rest in both places) This also shows that Ch. 20 follows 19 and is not speaking of the same time period. We also see the Beast and false prophet being thrown into the lack of fire in ch. 19 but Satan is only locked in the bottomless pit only to be thrown later into the lack of fire 20:10 where the beast and false prophet are already. I could go on but these are the major issue to seeing the events of Ch. 20 as starting after the fall of Jerusalem and not before. I do not see anything in Revelation that would undercut this obvious reading. I do see parallels to Ezekiel 38-39 in Rev. 19 but given the wider use of Gog and Magog in Jewish literature there is nothing demanding the the events about the loosing of Satan in Ch. 20 as being the same events as Ch. 19. Ezekiel 38-39 probably refers to events before the birth of Christ see Gary DeMar on this. I hope to seem some good exegetical responses to my issue. I am truly open to seeing the Millennium as a past event.
Yours in Christ Mark
A past fulfillment of a literal thousand-year millennium is definitely where I stand. It has been slow going to lay out proof for this, since this is totally uncharted territory. I have only found one person online who has proposed this so far. Being in the minority is not a problem for me, though.
Christ's words in John 12:31 and John 14:30 cross-referenced with Rev. 12:7-13 and Rev. 20:3,7 have confirmed the AD 33 end of the millennium for me.
The prophecy of Habakkuk 3:2 with its stated fulfillment in Ezra 9:9 confirms the literal mid-point of the millennium for me.
And the beginning of the millennium is described by King David in his prophetic prayer for his son, King Solomon, in the Septuagint rendering of the entire Psalm 72. In the days of King Solomon, "shall righteousness spring up, and abundance of peace (with Satan being chained) till the moon be removed (perhaps Israel's power as a people being removed?)". Solomon would also "bring low the false accuser", which to me indicates the binding of Satan in the days of his reign over Israel. The entire thousand years from 968/967 BC - AD 33 could be labeled as "the era of physical temple worship". It foreshadowed the time of true temple worship set up by Christ at his ascension, with Christ being the true foundation stone of this temple. The surge of the prophets' ministry during the thousand-year period, even during Israel's apostasy, was part of God's plan to restrain Satan's ability to deceive the nations. God used even the dispersion of His people into foreign nations to carry the knowledge of the God of Israel with them. Even a little nameless captive maid in Naaman the leper's household could bear witness to the power of God, and was a participant in the process of the "chaining" of Satan.
I do see a Solomonic background to Rev. 20 and it would be from 630 B.C to 70 A.D.. From the completion of the Temple to the Fall of Jerusalem 1000 years See Scott Hahn on this. This is not what John is talking about. Jesus like David ruled over the theocratic people 40 years but like David the Temple could not be built until His enemies where under His feet see 1 King 5:3 Solomon built the Temple. Jesus built the true Temple after His enemies were under His feet 70 A.D. 1 Cor 15:25 this is Rev. 21-22 the heavenly Jerusalem coming down. The 1000 Years in Revelation is the fulfillment of what we saw in type under Solomon. John 12:31 says the ruler of this world will be cast out future tense it does not say he is presently being cast out. in Rev. 12 he is cast to the land not sure this is a parallel? I am still looking for exegetical answers to the issue I raised in the book of Revelation itself.
The numbers used in the Book of Revelation are all symbolic. The period of 1,000 years is therefore not a literal period of time.
In that case, the "Millenium" was the 40 year period form 30AD to 70AD
Don't have much time here, but I'm curious to know how you interpret the "remnant" in Rev. 11:13 who are frightened at the earthquake and the deaths of 7,000 in the city, and give glory to the God of heaven as they watch these things occur. This is just before the seventh trumpet sounds. It uses the same "loipoi" term as in Rev. 19:21 and Rev. 20:5, and is in a chapter that precedes the later references, so would you say that they, too, are the same remnant? They glorify God at what they see, so this doesn't sound like the unrighteous remnant of 19:21 to me.
Also, the remnant of the woman's seed in Rev. 12:17 who keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ. Because they are also called a remnant, do you link them with the others as well? I guess I'm asking if you are saying that every use of the same Greek word means the same thing across the board, regardless of the immediate context.
And please excuse if I am not addressing every point you are making. I tend to take a while to chew on things before I understand people's statements completely.
No just because the same Greek word is used does not mean it has the same reference. The point between 19:21 and 20:5 is not only is it the same greek word but they are killed in 19:21 and do not live in 20:5 meaning they do not share in the 1000 years. Context is also the driving force here. The loipoi of 11:13 and 12:17 are not the same. Also in regards to 11:13 see Josephus Jewish wars book iv ch. 5. I totally understand you mulling things over. I have two theology degrees and have been studying preterism since 1983. I like the idea of a past millennium but I have to see it exegetically. I try not to hold to assumption but to let the text speak for itself. My reading of Revelation does not support ch 20 being a flashback but coming after ch. 19 which is the parousia. Russell seems to me to be the most honest with the text. Ratton also has some good insights but he also sees the fall of Rome in Rev. I do not I think it is all about the Judgement on Apostate Israel and the end of the O.C. as per Hebrews. I have had input over the years from Chilton, Jordan, DeMar, Gentry Hahan and Scott Foster who wrote a thesis " Thoughts on the Millennium" and Ed Stevens and I have been friends for 29 years. He does not interact well with me these days since I am now a Catholic. This drives him to ridicule instead of exegeting the text I bring. up. Eugenio Corsini a Catholic scholar holds to a Millennium similar to yours so this is not an issue that will jeopardize my catholic faith I just can not see it in the Text itself? I checked on Ed's website but could not locate his thoughts on Matthew 27:52-53 and the 144,000. The site is being redone and I know he is busy writing his master thesis.
Along the lines of the Rev. 19:21 and Rev. 20:5 connection we know as preterist that Rev. 20:11-5 is a 70 A.D.event cf. Daniel 12:1-2 and Matthew 25:31-46. We also know this because John uses the I Saw phrase which he does not use when speaking of the loosing of Satan. This is were Russell threw his hands up because the rest of the dead seems out of place in 20:5 if 20:11-15 is speaking about the parousia. The flow of the text makes sense if we see John contrasting two groups at the parousia. Those under the altar and their fellow brethren who are vindicated and those killed by the sword at the parousia. John is just making the point that those who came to life were once under the altar of sacrifice the martyrs and those who were slain in the judgement against apostate Israel did dot share in the first resurrection. I believe 20:11-15 is the judgement of all Israel throughout the ages. Those not in the book of life which would include those of Rev. 19:21 & 20:5 were cast into the lake of fire. Those found in the book of life of the Jews of all ages entered into life where the martyrs had a special degree of glory. The other solution is to maintain that the phrase about the rest of the dead should be absent from 20:5. There is a textual variant there. Most textual critic maintain it. If John wrote the phrase about the rest of the dead in 20:5 then seeing the connection to 19:21 makes sense and shows chronology between the two chapters. If you remove it then one could argue that 20:1-4 could be a flashback. But all FP I know make 20:11-15 the parousia and connect it to Mt.25:31-46 which flows from 20:1-4. So it is my observation that 20:11-15 shows chronology from Ch. 19 and if 20:5 is authentic it strengthens the chronology. The only consistent argument against this is to take corsini's approach and say all of Rev. is about the O.C. period with the fall of Jerusalem the backdrop. If I were to take the millennium as past this makes the most sense over a 30 to 70 millennium to me. Corsini maintains this by saying Rev. 1:1 is telling us this is a book about the Revelation about Jesus Christ not From Jesus Christ. This is novel. His other problem as I see it he excludes the preterist interpretations of many text in the epistles like 1 cor. 15 and 1 & 2 Thessalonians. So because his whole paradigm is untenable compared to Matthew 24 which he says is not about the fall of Jerusalem like Luke is. I can not see his exegesis on the 1000 years as correct.
One other note the FP like Ed Stevens maintain Ch. 12 as a flashback to the incarnation as an contextual support for a flashback in 20:1-4 but if as Russell and Ratton maintain it is about the Church in Judea and not a flashback then evidence for a possible flashback in 20 vanishes in my mind? We do not have any other flashback. The book is telescopic in nature I believe. I guess in the end it all boils down to exegesis and as we both know they are manifold even in the FP community. I have larger issue with the FP like this physical world will never end of if the sun does burn out we will be living on another planet as Steven's maintains. Kind of a Battle star galatica Theology which is actually Morman in nature. Lauren Greene produced the series from Mormon theology he was Mormon. I do think that the inspired text would have us know there will be a final divine intervention at the end of time. If as Russell lays out that is a loosing of Satan one last time than it makes sense. I think John does not describe what that entails because we have it in type in the fall of Jerusalem. The Jews saw the Temple as a micro- cosmos Solomon patterned it off the 6 days of creation. The called the Temple the Heavens and the earth
Look up Steven's Then and Now podcast for Jan. 19, 2014, Listener Feedback and Matthew 27:52-53. Last 10 minutes or so in particular of this 49 min. audio. He quotes multiple commentaries, expressing agreement with them here and there. One error he makes is to say the Matthew 27 saints probably ascended with Christ, and then a few minutes later he states that this is a fact. Sorry, that's jumping to a presumption as to just when they left this planet in their resurrected bodies.
Apologies for this being off your topic here, but thought you might want to know what webpage I was looking at.
Thank you. I was just thinking of sending you another post. I challenge you to sit and read Revelation in one sitting. Try to sweep any preconceived notions away. I think you will see the flow of the book and that the 1000 years makes sense as beginning after the Judgement of the false harlot the beast and the false prophet. I have done this many times and it seems to make sense and the natural sense the book seems to unfold as you read. Once I saw that Ch. 12 was not a flashback it really fell into place. Thank you for your kind interaction most FP I know of seem to resort to name calling to prove their point. Many take the position that if you do not see they have the truth then your the dumb one. This is why Ed and I can not interact. He has studied and found the truth and you either agree or you are a heretic. Interacting with you has been a pleasure. I really would like to put a FP paradigm into my thinking but the sacred text does not seem to teach that taken as a whole I am open but I need to overturn every exegetical rock and examine all my presuppositions so as see what the text says not what I want it to say.
I listened to the podcast section on Matthew 27:52-53 Some good points and I am in agreement that they probably partakers of the first Resurrection. It is very interesting looking at Rev. 20 4 John uses the aorist tense when talking about those who reign ect. but in Verse 6 he uses the future tense of the reigning. I think a possible solution is that those seen in Matthew 27:52-53 was the beginning of gathering those who would reign the 1000 years starting at the parousia. Their full number was after Rev. 19. It is also possible that Rev. 20:6 and the future tense may refer to those joining those of 20:4 throughout the 1000 years agreeing with your point about those who live and reign at different points in the millennium. If this is correct then the future tense of 20:6 would be another indicator of Ch. 20 coming after the events of 19.