O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?
Hi everybody, a new member with the same old questions here. I have been aware of preterism for a couple of years now and though I find much of it appealing I however have challenges with primarily 2 issues, one being the resurrection and the other being the end of the old covenant. These may even be the same question. Searching for discussions about these issues has led me here, Im sure it will be beneficial, so just bear with me guy.
How is 1 Cor 15:12-13 " Now if Christ is preached that he hath been raised from the dead, how say some among you that there is no resurrection of the dead? But if there is no resurrection of the dead, neither hath Christ been raised" to be understood
On Revelation, I had seen you mention the 3 beasts etc and I acknowledge your points. Im not sure if I accept limiting Daniel's vision to actions of only one of the 3 beasts in Revelation. However I tend to embrace as much that can fit into the symbolism. IOW I can accept that Ananus and Jesus were referred to but that would not be the complete/total reference of the vision.
On 1 Thes 4 I agree with you completely about the hope for vindication and the grief that the dead would miss out on it and how Paul said they would equally participate.
The only sticky part is how to include the physical resurrection into the picture.
If those who needed comfort were not the first fruit, what comfort did Paul give them?
If those who needed comfort are not included in those participating in verse 15-18 (for the error had taken all other hope besides vindication) what comforting words did Paul provide?
It would seem that Paul did not re-establish any other hope for those who were grieving. What hope would be left for those who died after Pentecost?
Could you also clarify: do you find the Thessalonians grieving for those who died before Pentecost or those who died after.
It's possible I'm just dense, but I really don't see what the sticky part is about fitting a physical resurrection into this picture. I mean, here you have 144,000 Firstfruits saints who undeniably made it above ground in AD 33, mixing and mingling among the body of believers in those days. Their existence was intended to bolster the confidence and hope of the church which was about to be plunged after AD 33 into - not just ONE period of persecution, but no less than THREE periods that would try their endurance to the utmost - and all of this in addition to the 3 1/2 years of tribulation in Judea and Jerusalem that ended in AD 70.
Without saying a single word, the very presence of these 144,000 Firstfruits/Matt. 27:52-53 saints offered this mute testimony:
"We made it through to the other side of death, just as Jesus Himself did. You all can make it through persecution and death as well. Have hope, and don't revert to Judaism, for that is not where hope lies. It lies with the resurrected Christ. We have experienced this, and we will wait on earth to share in the soon-coming rapture with you if you should be killed before Christ returns in AD 70."
This was just the comfort needed for the fledgling church which was destined to soon pass through the following:
#1) the great persecution from AD 33-37, arising from the Jews at Jerusalem the very day Stephen was stoned (Acts 8:1, and Rev. 12:14-16 - the last half of Daniel's 70th week),
#2) then, the tribulation after AD 59 arising from both Jews and Gentiles in Asia following the Ephesian riot of the silversmiths (Acts 19:23 cp. II Cor. 1:8 -Interlinear). This was the "tribulation" that John the writer of Revelation was experiencing as he wrote the book just before AD 60 (Rev. 1:9).
#3) With barely enough time to catch its breath, the church was then subjected to Nero's full-scale pogrom against the saints following the fire at Rome in AD 64, (which was the deadly wound to one of the heads/mountains of Rome on the Sea beast), lasting until Nero's death in AD 68 (the 42 months of Rev. 13:5,7 the same as the time, times, and dividing of time found in Dan. 7:21,25).
Death was such a common fate for the saints in those days that Rev. 16:10 does not exaggerate when it says that the Sea beast's kingdom was "full of darkness" once the 5th angel pours his vial out upon Rome, the "seat of the (sea) beast". If Christians are the light of the world, and the emperor Nero did his best to stamp out this light during that time, no wonder Rome was "full of darkness".
This last heaviest period of persecution, when the saints were "worn out" and "overcome" by this war, would take Paul and Peter's lives in martyrdom by AD 67. But this was exactly what Paul was wishing for anyway - to be dead just in time before Christ returned so that he would be able to participate in the bodily resurrection when it arrived in AD 70. (Phil. 3:10,11 Interlinear) "...to know Him and the power of resurrection His, and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death, IF BY ANY MEANS I MAY ARRIVE AT THE RESURRECTION OF THE DEAD." This "power" of Christ's resurrection is defined as the same power evinced by Christ when He laid His life down, and was also the same type of power displayed when He "took it up again" (John 10:18). Paul wanted to experience that same power that would raise his own body from the grave.
For the disciples to be willing to die for Christ before AD 70 in order to experience the resurrection of their bodies at that time - this is exactly what Christ was speaking of when He said "For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: and whosoever will lose his life (by dying before AD 70's resurrection) shall find it." (Matt. 16:25)
We also have to remember that it wasn't only the Thessalonians which were to benefit by Paul's comforting words. This letter was intended to be read by "all the holy brethren" (I Thess. 5:27). That would include the Corinthian church and the Ephesian church where the error of Hymenaeus and Philetus had taken root (II Tim. 2:17,18 and I Cor. 15:12).
Paul taught the Corinthian church in I Cor. 15:23,24 that there was a proper order of events for the bodily resurrection. First was Christ the Firstfruit in AD 33 (undeniably physical in nature). THEN (epeita - the stage coming sometime afterward) those of Christ at His coming in AD 70 (same type of resurrection, just the 2nd stage of it). THEN (eita - next directly after that) the end, when He shall have given up the kingdom to Him who is God and Father; when He shall have annulled all rule and all authority and power."
I Thess. 4:15 also discusses this proper order of events when it pins down just who is going to "precede" whom. Contrary to what might be expected, those who had already made it above ground first, (the Matt. 27:52-53/144,000 saints) would not have an advantage over the rest of the righteous dead - particularly those who had lost their lives in martyrdom for the testimony of Christ since AD 33 and were still underground.
Even those believers who were hearing Paul's words and would soon perish in one of the blistering persecution periods yet to come in either AD 59 or AD 64 under Nero - even these would "precede" these Matt. 27:52-53/144,000 saints who had already been made alive and had remained on earth. The word "precede" usually means that someone is actually GOING SOMEWHERE. The desired end result Jesus wanted for all the resurrected dead saints was to "be where I am" - in heaven (John 17:24,11). An actual location, not just a condition or state of being. If the physical aspect of resurrection was not to be included, there would be no need to establish who would "precede" whom.
You ask: "What hope would be left for those who died after Pentecost?"
Please let me know why you prefer to hold up Pentecost after the crucifixion as the dividing line for any difference in the destiny for the dead. I'm not quite following you on that one, and am not sure of how to answer your last questions until I know why that occasion in particular should be highlighted.
It seems we are both getting lost but that's why there is the word "Clarification!"
I understood you as SAYING that those who died after Pentecost would not rise in AD70.
Consequently I couldn't find any comfort in Paul's word in 1 Thes 4 for those whose comrades had died after Pentecost since they were not going to rise.
Your clarification on this point will help. Your demarcation of Pentecost is why I also used it as a dividing line.
Okay, I get it - we are getting our lines of communication crossed when it comes to understanding which of two Pentecosts we are discussing. Sorry, let me try again here.
You asked: "What hope would be left for those who died after Pentecost?" (after the time of Pentecost in AD 70 - NOT at Pentecost in AD 33 after the crucifixion)
The hope reserved for anyone who died in the faith after Pentecost in AD 70 is the 3rd bodily resurrection event at the end of human history. It will fall at the time that the Feast of Tabernacles would have ordinarily been celebrated, in order to complete the pattern of the OT types of the 3 required pilgrim feasts. This is the reason we have only this 3rd required feast celebration, (the Feast of Tabernacles), highlighted in Zechariah 14:16-19 in the years following the AD 70 fall of Jerusalem described at the beginning of Zechariah 14.
The other two feast celebrations required under Mosaic law, Passover and Pentecost, aren't brought up at all in Zech. 14, since by the end of the AD 70 holocaust at Jerusalem, the fulfillment of the Passover resurrection in AD 33 and the fulfillment of the Pentecost resurrection in AD 70 would have already been past events. It's not that we are to revert to animal sacrifices again - it's just God's way of emphasizing the importance for the timing of this Feast of Tabernacles.
I also have some firm opinions as to the year in which this last, 3rd bodily resurrection event will take place for all believers who died after Pentecost in AD 70 or who will die in our future. This is based on scriptural symbolism I have seen for the projected length of human history on this planet, and how that intersects with my understanding of the year in which the Rev. 20, literal-thousand-year millennium was already fulfilled. It does run counter to those who align themselves with an old-earth view, so I have refrained from mentioning this before, so as not to test the patience of the website host more than I already have.
Its clear now.
I see my mind would delete the "after ad70" once it saw Pentecost, thus the resulting confusion (as my mind only recognised Acts 2 as Pentecost).
Why do you specify the Pentecost after ad70?
This is quite refreshing to actually have someone comprehend what I'm saying! Hopefully you don't feel as if I'm hammering away with these comments simply to bludgeon someone into finally agreeing with me. But I believe it's an almost universal need of the soul for one to at least be understood. If you happen to be in agreement with any of these points - well, that is just additional icing on the cake.
To address your last question: "Why do you specify the Pentecost after AD 70? (for the 2nd bodily resurrection, that is)
Since you're actually the first person to ever take the time to ask me that, this answer is in rather rough draft form, and could probably use some pruning and refining to get it on simpler, more basic terms. But here goes.
First of all, on the calendar, this resurrection was during the AD 70 year, (not after), which I think was the intent of your question. More than any other text, I believe the Daniel 12:11-13 verses pinpoint the exact day of this 2nd bodily resurrection. The following is how it reads in the Septuagint, which was the version of these verses that seemed to open them up to me in a way that the KJV had not done:
"And from the time of the removal/change of the perpetual sacrifice, when the abomination of desolation shall be set up, there shall be a thousand two hundred and ninety days. Blessed is he that waits, and comes to the thousand three hundred and thirty-five days. But go thou, and rest; for there are yet days and seasons to the fulfillment of the end; and thou shalt stand in thy lot at the end of the days."
I realize that the 1290 and 1335 days mentioned here have been applied to any number of interpretations from the various eschatological camps. Those who can't devise an explanation for their meaning will assign a symbolic sense to these two numbers, as in Calvin's Daniel commentary.
To my mind, however, the very imprecision of these numbers argues against using them in any symbolic sense. 1335 is an odd number, by any calculation, as is 1290 as well. In that case, it seems best to take them as a literal number without rounding them off in any fashion. Besides, there is a definite "blessing" that falls on Daniel and anyone else who waits for this length of time to expire, and arrives at the end of this 1335th day - the blessing of "standing in their lot".
This phrase is a clear reflection of the Land of Canaan being "divided by lot" to the tribes of Israel. Their inheritance in the land of promise was portioned out to each tribe by Joshua in Joshua 18:10, after the land was subdued. There are many that have recognized the parallels between the 40 years of wilderness wandering for the Israelites with the 40 years' transition period for the covenants, which ended in AD 70. The fall of Jericho is meant to be a type for the fall of Jerusalem, after which the Israelites entered the promised land. Daniel 12:13 draws out this connection between the two episodes, with the "standing in your lot" phrase meant to represent the resurrection for Daniel's people - the whole house of Israel - including the mixed multitude of believing "strangers" within it.
Once we see that a resurrection is attached to the end of the 1335th day mentioned in Daniel 12:12, then we can pinpoint the date for it by using the two features that describe the day that begins the 1335-day countdown. These two features are said in the Septuagint verse 11 to happen at the same season. They are the season when #1), the "removal/change in the perpetual sacrifice" takes place, and also #2), the day when the "abomination of desolation shall be set up".
The common misconception is that these two features are separated by a time gap between them of 1290 days. THAT'S WRONG. There is NO gap between these two features. The abomination of desolation is set up "WHEN" the time/season/kairos for a removal/change in the perpetual sacrifice takes place. These two features run concurrently.
Now, there are many and varied arguments, particularly among dispensationalists, as to what the "abomination of desolation" is. Personally, I'm standing on the corollary passage to Mark 13:14, found in Luke 21:20, that says quite bluntly that the abomination of desolation in Daniel is ARMIES surrounding Jerusalem. That means I look for a season when the perpetual sacrifice is removed, combined with a day when the armies surround Jerusalem.
After considering each of the times that armies could be said to have come against Jerusalem, (Cestius Gallus in AD 66, Vespasian gathering his forces against Jerusalem in AD 68/69, and Titus at Passover in AD 70), there is only one of these that occurs at the same season when the perpetual sacrifice is removed. That one would be the arrival at Jerusalem in Oct. 4, AD 66 of Cestius Gallus, that inept commander who managed to snatch defeat out of the jaws of victory, and whose 12th legion ended up being trounced by the Jewish rebels.
One of the very reasons Rome's hand was forced to initiate a military campaign against Judea was in reaction to the change in the daily temple sacrifice that the Jews had agreed to offer for the Roman emperor. I quote from John Evans' book, "The Four Kingdoms of Daniel" (p. 305-306):
"In August, King Agrippa, a great grandson of Herod the Great, gave up trying to hold the revolutionaries in check and removed to the territory under his direct rule to the northeast of Jerusalem beyond the Jordan. In the same month (August), Eleazar, a high official of the Temple and the son of the former high priest Ananias, engineered the elimination of the twice-daily sacrifice for the Roman emperor at the Temple, while rebel forces captured the fortress of Masada and massacred the Roman garrison there. Recall that Josephus wrote that this suspension of sacrifices for foreigners 'was the true beginning of our war with the Romans'. After intense fighting in Jerusalem, the Romans surrendered to Eleazar in September and were subsequently put to death. The suspension of the temple sacrifices and the massacre of captives presented the Romans with a challenge from which they could not shrink".
The result of this provocation in August (the season when the change was made in the perpetual sacrifice for the Roman emperor), was the gathering of the Roman armies of the 12th legion under Cestius Gallus, who arrived to surround Jerusalem (the abomination of desolation) on Oct. 4, AD 66 according to Ussher's Annals of the World (entry # 6940).
This Oct 4th AD 66 date is the beginning of the 1335 days in Daniel 12:12. Count forward 1290 days, and you arrive just after Passover week has started in AD 70 when Titus came to surround Jerusalem a final time. Titus' battle campaign strategy was for him to arrive when the maximum number of Jews had arrived for the required feast, in order to bottle them up within the city under a siege. Count forward another 45 days from when Titus arrived, and you come to Pentecost in AD 70, exactly 1335 days after Oct 4, AD 66.
The blessing waited for by Daniel and his people was the resurrection which occurred on this day. Even Isaiah spoke of those who waited for this day in Isaiah 25:8-9, when the "defensed city" is turned into a ruinous heap that will "never be rebuilt".
"He will swallow up death in victory; and the Lord GOD will wipe away tears from off all faces; and the reproach of His people shall He take away from off all the earth: for the LORD hath spoken it. And it shall be said in that day, Lo, this is our God; WE HAVE WAITED FOR HIM AND HE WILL SAVE US; this is the Lord: WE HAVE WAITED FOR HIM, WE WILL BE GLAD AND REJOICE IN HIS SALVATION."
I take this "salvation" to be the culmination of all resurrection hopes that believers from creation up to that point in AD 70 had waited for. It was the fulfillment of their complete salvation package - an incorruptible body, soul, and spirit in the presence of God in heaven at the end of this 1335th day. They all "stood in their lot" in the True Land of Promise at that day.
It is the same salvation that Job waited for in Job 14:14-15 LXX: "For if a man should die, shall he live again, having accomplished the days of his life? I WILL WAIT till I am made again. Then shalt thou call, and I will hearken to thee: but do not thou reject the work of thy hands." Also Job 14:12: "And man that has lain down in death shall certainly not rise again till the heaven be dissolved and they shall not awake from their sleep."
Thankfully, I don't need to convince Preterists on this website that the "dissolved heaven" mentioned here in Job 14 occurred in AD 70. What they can't accept is that Job (and every other believer) were each "made again", and "rose again" in their re-made bodies in AD 70.
So there you have it, Boyardee. As I said, this could use some pruning so that it isn't so wearisome to get through. Let me know if any of this still sounds foggy to you.
But the main take home is this: the eschatological outlook of the Thessalonians (before Paul clarified) had been [transformed to] one where the redemptive plan would be accomplished by the ad70 vindication alone [without the need for physical resurrection]. Paul's correction and comforting words however, did not explain anything beyond ad70.
And this is the same scenario I see in 1 Cor 15, the hope of those who denied resurrection was simple vindication i.e. they could have complete (pseudo) Christian eschatology without physical resurrection.
Hello Patricia (and Boyardee)
I've been following this thread for a while, just out of curiosity. I have also been a member of DID for many years, but don't post much anymore.
In any case, I just wanted to chime in and make a few observations.
1. What exactly is your premise or disagreement with preterism in this thread? You talk about a lot of stuff, but it's really difficult to determine what you agree with or disagree with and whether or not you are still on topic. The thread's title is "resurrection", but that's pretty broad. Preterism is itself a broad subject, since it has many interpretations about what happened in the first century and preterists don't really agree amongst themselves about the details. I prefer the label "fulfilled eschatology" and "covenant eschatology" to describe what preterists talk about, as I don't like another "ism" added to my christianity.
2. It seems that you are more of a mind to interpret first century happenings in literal rather than figurative language. I can appreciate that, but where I believe you are making errors in your interpretations is in your mixing of the two. For example, you want to assign names to the two witnesses as real humans who lived and died in the streets of Jerusalem. OTOH, if you are consistent with biblical interpretation, and the principles of preterism, you can't interpret some parts of Revelation figuratively and other parts literally. Most of preterism, or at least the branch of it that sees the NT prophecies as fulfilled via OT symbols recognizes that the OT literal physical happenings have their fulfillment in the NT in symbolic ways. The Jews made this mistake in looking for a physical messiah who would rescue them from the Romans. But Christ came in a way that they did not expect. Though He was physical, the things He spoke of were spiritual, and they could not hear them because they were looking for a physical fulfillment, but He fulfilled the OT types spiritually. Yes, He had to physically die, but after His death, the kingdom was transferred from earth to heaven, and now the things that happened on earth had a direct corollary in heaven, both pre-70 and post-70. Yet, preterism shows that the kingdom of God is an eternal thing, and that even today, people are entering into it by their "resurrection to life". A physical resurrection is no longer indicated nor needed after the resurrection of Christ, since He is the forerunner and High Priest, and fulfilled ALL things in His body, including the need for a physical resurrection. A physical resurrection is unneeded by christians today, since what we are raised into is newness of life, and are born again, not out of the womb, as Nicodemus thought, but out of the water (baptism) and the blood of Christ. But I digress...
Well, this is all my two cents observations. I will shrink back to lurking. Thanks.
Always a joy for someone to chime in, even with just 2 cents.
My questions regarding the covenant eschatological view of the resurrection are already well expressed (I hope). What renewed interest was the possible link I recently stumbled across between Rev 11 and 1 Thes 4. It was in working around the implications of this possibility, which seems clear to me, that I started trying to reconstruct the eschatology of the Thessalonians. I concluded that as far as the discussion in 1 Thes 4 there is no room for exegesis that speaks of a future resurrection different from the one which was to occur in the lifetime of the original audience.
Fearing the tendency towards full preterism, I needed alternative thinking. Thus I sought to see how my partner in crime (Patricia) could work a way around this and as far as I have understood her, the 3rd resurrection is simply assumed, it can not be proven.
The discovery of a complete eschatology ending with the AD70 resurrection naturally brought me back to 1 Cor 15 (the discussion point of this thread). I tried to see if there could be a way to maintain a physical resurrection and making sense of the fact that a heresy denying this had gained ground. I came up with my own reconstruction and wanted to hear how Patricia (and anyone else who believes in a future physical resurrection) would work a way around it.
But if anything, I am more open to the IBD view than the CB view.
Here is a passage you may wish to look at a little more carefully as an indication that there actually is a third coming of Christ in our future.
Look at Luke 12:350-38 in the Interlinear version. The context is Christ's instructions for the disciples to watch and be prepared for His coming.
"Let be your loins girded about and lamps burning; and ye like to men waiting for their lord, whenever he shall return from the wedding feasts", (notice, this is plural feasts here) "that having come and having knocked, immediately they may open to him. Blessed bondmen those whom coming the Lord shall find watching. Verily I say to you that he will gird himself and will make recline them, and coming up will serve them. And if he come (#1) in the second watch, AND (#2) in the third watch he come, and find [them] thus, blessed are bondmen those."
Notice it doesn't say that it is alternately EITHER the 2nd watch, OR the 3rd watch - it says the second AND the third watch. In other words, if Christ finds His servants ready and watching when He comes those TWO TIMES, all those servants are blessed. Peter's response to this in Luke 12:41 was to ask, "Lord, speakest thou this parable unto us, or even to all?" In other words, did this watching for Christ's coming just apply to them at that time, or to all believers who would ever live? Christ's answer is generic, and applies it to whoever is a steward of God's truth as a leader over His "household". That would mean any generation - both theirs and ours - should be prepared for His coming returns - both of them.
As further proof of a third coming, you may not recall further back in this Resurrection post that I brought out the two connected references of Hosea 6:3 and James 5:7,8 that speak of the Lord's two comings (including resurrections) that would occur at the occasions of the "early rain" and the "latter rain" - which are specifically the times for the Feasts of Tabernacles and Pentecost.
We have scripture promises in both OT and NT that "ALL those who go down to the dust shall bow before Him." (Ps. 22:29 and Phil. 2:10,11) This would have to include the just and the unjust who have died from before AD 70 as well as after AD 70. All those beings that are "under the earth" (in the grave) will eventually get their day in court in which they will show subjection to Jesus Christ, whether joyfully or grudgingly.
Only it takes place on two different occasions instead of just one as traditionally presumed.
Im sure you know I believe together with you for another coming of Christ and a physical resurrection.
When I spoke about this 3rd coming being assumed, I meant in the context of 1 Thes 4 i.e. you can not get the text to confess to the 3rd coming, you have to read it into the text. Don't know if you agree with that point alone (the 3rd coming we agree).