The Declarations of the Nearness of His Coming.
“The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave Him to show His servants — things which must shortly take place… 3 Blessed is he who reads and those who hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which
are written in it; for the time is near.” (Rev 1:1,3)
“Behold, I am coming quickly! Blessed is he who keeps the words of the prophecy of this book.” (Rev 22:7)
In spite of the unanimity of concrete external evidences indicating a late AD 96 date of John’s vision which we considered in the previous blog, the Preterists persist in seeking interpretive arguments in support for their AD 66 – AD 70 coming of Christ within the book of Revelation. One of the main arguments they present is based upon the statements declaring the nearness of Christ’s return. However, having already seen that it wasn’t written until AD 96, it is evident that the coming of Christ being referred to could not possibly be an AD 70 coming of Christ. The coming of Christ mentioned in Revelation must have still been future in AD 96 when the Revelation was given to John. Also, it is worthy of consideration that all of the Early Church Fathers unanimously believed that the Second Coming of Christ in Revelation was yet in their future. So how are we to understand the multiple references to Christ’s soon return in the book of Revelation?
The book of Revelation opens and closes with Jesus’ declarations that His coming would not only take place quickly or suddenly, but that His return was also to be perceived as being near. Six times throughout Revelation Jesus says that He will come quickly. (2:5; 2:16; 3:11; 11:14; 22:7; 22:12; 22:20) After Jesus declares His last words in Revelation 22:20 saying, “Surely I am coming quickly,” John follows up by saying “Amen. Even so. Come Lord Jesus!” Two things are evident in John’s heart-cry “Even so. Come Lord Jesus”: First, that he did not know the exact timing of Christ’s return, and also that he longed for and anticipated His soon return – hopefully even within his own lifetime. Truly that has been the blessed hope of every love-sick saint from that day until now (Titus 2:13; 2 Tim 4:8).
As presented in Chapter 7, (Timing of Destruction Revealed – Timing of Second Coming Hidden), it is the obvious divine intent that every generation should live with a sense of expectancy, with the hope that they may live to see His coming. Jesus, in His humanity, said that even He did not know the exact time of His return. He simply instructed us to live with expectancy, watching for the signs of His coming:
“But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father. 33 Take heed, watch and pray; for you do not know when the time is. 34 It is like a man going to a far country, who left his house and gave authority to his servants, and to each his work, and commanded the doorkeeper to watch. 35 Watch therefore, for you do not know when the master of the house is coming — in the evening, at midnight, at the crowing of the rooster, or in the morning — 36 lest, coming suddenly, he find you sleeping. 37 And what I say to you, I say to all: Watch!” (Mark 13:32-37)
After His resurrection and ascension to the Father, He evidently knew the hour when He would return. However, when the disciples inquired as to the timing of His coming, He withheld that information from them, emphasizing instead the task at hand:
“Therefore, when they had come together, they asked Him, saying, ‘Lord, will You at this time restore the kingdom to Israel?’ 7 And He said to them, ‘It is not for you to know times or seasons which the Father has put in His own authority. 8 But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.” (Acts 1:6-8)
From just these two passages alone, we should understand that God wants each generation to focus upon the work at hand, while at the same time living with the expectancy that His return could be within their own lifetime. As discussed in chapter seven, God often intentionally hides from us the exact timing of the fulfillment of His promises. In the hidden council of His own unsearchable wisdom, He withholds certain information from us for our own good and also in order to fulfill His own good purposes.
“The secret things belong to the Lord our God, but those things which are revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may do all the words of this law.” (Deut 29:29)
God gives us information on a need to know basis that we might better concentrate upon the work at hand. We see this very same thing expressed in a parable Jesus gave to those who were expecting the kingdom of God to immediately appear:
“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.” (Luke 19:11-13)
That it would be counter-productive for us to know the exact time is evident. If we were to think it was immediate, we would not do the business He left us to accomplish. If we were to know that it is in the distant future – beyond our lifetime, we would also tend to procrastinate and occupy ourselves with nonessentials, much as we tend to wait until a deadline and then cram at the last minute for an exam.
As an example of the human tendency to remain passive when under the assumption that nothing will happen in our own lifetime, consider the unbridled consumerism and wastefulness of our generation. Even knowing that our excesses are depleting the earth’s natural resources and contaminating the environment, only those who have become convinced that they or their children will personally have to reap the consequences in their own lifetime have begun to take the necessary measures to prepare for the survival of future generations.
Many, even knowing we are nearing a crisis in natural resources; in their covetousness, deny the validity of the warning signs, in order to justify continuing in their excesses. The same is true with regards to the expectancy of Christ’s Second Coming and the end of the age. The Preterists, argue that the end of the age is already behind us; that Christ already came in AD 70; that we are now living in the new age and Christ will not come again until the far distant future – possibly even a million years from now.  They often mock their Futurist brethren who have labored in their generations under the belief that Christ could return even in their own lifetime. They accuse them of “escapism” and complacency – completely ignoring all that the Church has accomplished while looking for the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ (Titus 2:13).
Also, we see from 1Peter 4:7 that it is not only the coming of Christ which is said to be near, but also the end of the entire order of things as we know it: “But the end of all things is at hand; therefore be serious and watchful in your prayers” (1Peter 4:7). Surely the localized AD 70 destruction of Jerusalem cannot be reasonably referred as “the end of all things.” George Eldon Ladd makes a good observation concerning the nature of eschatological prophecy:
“There is in biblical prophecy a tension between the immediate and distant future, the distant is viewed through the transparency of the return of the Lord, and it is the nature of biblical prophecy to make it possible for every generation to live in expectancy of the end. To relax and say ‘where is the promise of his coming?’ is to become a scoffer of divine truth. The ‘biblical’ attitude is ‘take heed, for you do not know when the time will come.” 
Peter prophesied saying that “scoffers will come in the last days, walking according to their own lusts, and saying, ‘Where is the promise of His coming?’” (2Peter 3:3,4). In response to these mockers, Peter explains that time is irrelevant to the God who inhabits eternity: “with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.” (v.8). He continues explaining that the Lord is taking His time and will continue waiting until all the elect of this age have come to repentance (v.9). Note that when He does come, it will not be in any way comparable to the AD 70 destruction of Jerusalem:
“But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night, in which the heavens will pass away with a great noise, and the elements will melt with fervent heat; both the earth and the works that are in it will be burned up….13 Nevertheless we, according to His promise, look for new heavens and a new earth in which righteousness dwells.” (2Peter 3:10,13)
The Second Coming described in this passage, and also in the book of Revelation, is obviously referring to something more global in scope than the localized destruction of Jerusalem in AD 70. Contrary to what Welton and other Preterists argue, when the word for earth (ge) is used in conjunction with the heavens it always refers to the Planet Earth and not a localized region like the land of Israel. It is the same construction as used in Genesis 1:1 (LXX), and not even the Preterists would argue that the original creation only included the land of Israel. The heavens and the earth which will be made new in the day of the Lord cannot possibly be referring to the localized destruction of Jerusalem nearly 2,000 years ago. If the Second Coming of Christ was nothing more than the destruction of Jerusalem, then unbelievers would be justified in mocking us.
If unbelievers will mock us (or even our Preterist brethren for that matter), may it be for our patient and continued hope in the glorious return of our Lord in the clouds to take His Bride to be with Him:
“Therefore be patient, brethren, until the coming of the Lord. See how the farmer waits for the precious fruit of the earth, waiting patiently for it until it receives the early and latter rain. 8 You also be patient. Establish your hearts, for the coming of the Lord is at hand.” (James 5:7-8)
They shall look upon Him whom they have pierced
“Behold, He is coming with clouds, and every eye will see Him, even they who pierced Him. And all the tribes of the earth will mourn because of Him. Even so, Amen.” (Rev 1:7)
This is one of the strongest passages declaring the global planetary scope of Christ’s Second Coming. In the first place, it says that every eye shall see Him when He comes in the clouds. It should be obvious that it cannot be limited to the eyes of those living in Israel in AD 70, as Preterists must argue. Apart from the fact that Revelation was not even written until 25 years later, as we have already seen, the book of Revelation wasn’t even written to those living in the land of Israel, but rather to the seven churches in far-away Asia Minor. It is probable that the majority living in that region were not even aware that Jerusalem’s siege had taken place. They didn’t have the news media to make them globally aware as we do in the 21st Century.
Even Welton admits that the Thessalonians would have been too far from Jerusalem to know that Jerusalem had been destroyed. But even if they were able to personally witness the destruction of Jerusalem with their own eyes, seeing Jerusalem destroyed by the Romans is still a far cry from seeing “Him” – Jesus, coming with clouds. Seeing Jerusalem destroyed is not the same as seeing Jesus return. When Christ truly comes again to rule in the millennial earth, future theologians and historians will not be debating as to whether or not He actually came. His coming will be an undebatable event. After the Second Coming of Christ, there will no longer be any mockers still saying: “Where is the promise of His coming?” All will know that He has come to reign:
“And the stars of heaven fell to the earth, as a fig tree drops its late figs when it is shaken by a mighty wind. 14 Then the sky receded as a scroll when it is rolled up, and every mountain and island was moved out of its place. 15 And the kings of the earth (ge), the great men, the rich men, the commanders, the mighty men, every slave and every free man, hid themselves in the caves and in the rocks of the mountains, 16 and said to the mountains and rocks, ‘Fall on us and hide us from the face of Him who sits on the throne and from the wrath of the Lamb! 17 For the great day of His wrath has come, and who is able to stand?” (Rev 6:13-17)
The declaration that “every eye will see Him” is not the only indicator in Revelation 1:7 which reveals that He will be seen on a planetary level when He comes with clouds. The saying “every tribe of the earth” cannot be reasonably limited to those who were in the land of Israel and witnessed Jerusalem’s destruction as the Preterists argue. Wherever the expression “all the tribes of the earth” (pasai fulai tes ges) appears in the Scriptures, it refers to the whole of humanity (Gen 12:3; 28:14; Ps 72:17; Zech 14:17 LXX cf. Acts 3:25). As we have already seen, the Greek word ge normally is the proper name for our planet, unless the immediate context limits its meaning. The “earth” (ge), is mentioned just two verses earlier in 1:5 where it refers to Christ as “the ruler over the kings of the earth (ge).” Clearly Christ’s sovereignty is here declared to be over the entire Planet Earth and not just the land of Israel. The other instances in Revelation where the tribes of the earth are mentioned, also emphasize that the term is used with reference to the whole Earth and not just a locality:
“And they sing a new song, saying, Thou art worthy to take the book, and to open its seals; because thou hast been slain, and hast redeemed to God, by thy blood, out of every tribe, and tongue, and people, and nation, 10 and made them to our God kings and priests; and they shall reign over the earth (ge).” (Rev 5:9-10 Darby)
I don’t believe that any Preterists would want to argue that the blood of Christ only redeemed those living in the land of Israel or that the kingdom reign is limited to Israel rather than covering the whole Earth.
“It was granted to him (the Beast) to make war with the saints and to overcome them. And authority was given him over every tribe, tongue, and nation. 8 All who dwell on the earth (ge) will worship him, whose names have not been written in the Book of Life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.” (Rev 13:7-8)
Preterists argue that the Beast referred to here who will have authority over every tribe, tongue and nation upon the earth was Nero who reigned from AD 54 – AD 68. However, here, once again, they must limit the scope of every tribe and all those who dwell on the earth (ge), to the old Roman empire under Nero – something they would not attempt to do in Revelation 13:9,10, since there they would also be limiting the scope of Christ’s redemption to a locality. Also, in order to argue that Nero is the Beast of Revelation, they must first establish that Revelation was written before he committed suicide in AD 68, which, as we have already seen, they are not able to do. Also, they must go against the belief of the early Church, since the Early Church Fathers regarded the Beast as being a yet future Antichrist.
Also, in Revelation 3 we see that the church of Philadelphia in Asia Minor was given the promise of exemption from the prophesied hour of trial which would come upon the “whole inhabited world” (oikoumeneis holeis), to test those who dwell on the earth (ge):
“Because you have kept My command to persevere, I also will keep you from the hour of trial which shall come upon the whole world (oikoumeneis holeis), to test those who dwell on the earth (ge). 11 Behold, I am coming quickly! Hold fast what you have, that no one may take your crown.” (Rev 3:10,11)
That Philadelphia would be kept from that hour of trial would go without saying if ge was limited to the land of Israel, since Asia Minor was hundreds of miles from the affected region in Israel. Also, we see here that earth (ge) cannot be limited to a localized geographical region in this context, since it is used in conjunction with oikoumineis holeis, which literally means “the whole inhabited world.” The promise is obviously directed to the church in Philadelphia in order to reassure them that they would not have to experience the world-wide persecution under the coming Antichrist. The church of Philadelphia had already suffered greatly, and in the context Jesus was giving them words of comfort. He wanted them to know that the Great Tribulation, described in the rest of the book of Revelation, would not affect them.
The Preterists argue that the phrase, “even they who pierced Him,” must have reference to the Jews of the very same generation that crucified Him (Other Preterists would say it refers to the Roman soldiers instead of the Jews). However, literally speaking, it was only one individual - a Roman soldier, who actually pierced Him (Jn 19:34). In a real sense, however, all who have ever sinned against God pierced Him, since “He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities, and the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all.” (Isa 53:5,6). Many of us have already looked upon Him whom we have pierced and repented of our sins against Him. However, all of Adam’s race will one day look upon Him whom they have pierced – not just that one individual Roman soldier, but all the sons of Adam.
The passage in Revelation 1:7 is actually a quote from Zechariah’s prophecy. When seen in its context, it is obvious that seeing the One whom they pierced is an act of God’s grace and produces repentance, and therefore cannot be applied to a judgment without mercy upon Jerusalem in AD 70, as Preterists maintain:
“And I will pour on the house of David and on the inhabitants of Jerusalem the Spirit of grace and supplication; then they will look on Me whom they pierced. Yes, they will mourn for Him as one mourns for his only son, and grieve for Him as one grieves for a firstborn.” (Zech 12:10)
This is a clear reference to the true Second Coming of Christ - the time when the Deliverer comes out of Zion, saving Israel and removing all ungodliness from Jacob. It is a coming for their salvation and not for their destruction:
“And so all Israel will be saved, as it is written: ‘The Deliverer will come out of Zion, and He will turn away ungodliness from Jacob; 27 for this is My covenant with them, when I take away their sins.’ 28 Concerning the gospel they are enemies for your sake, but concerning the election they are beloved for the sake of the fathers.
For the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable.” (Rom 11:26-29)
Contrary to what the Preterists affirm, the Second Coming is for Israel’s salvation – not for her destruction. Although national Israel has been hardened in part by God in order that salvation might come to the Gentiles; when Christ comes out of Zion, He will save all Israel.
So, we see that Revelation 1:5 and 1:7, which are key introductory verses to understanding the book of Revelation, do not favor an AD 66 – AD 70 fulfillment of its prophecies as the Preterists would claim. From beginning to end, the Preterists use their own creativity in interpreting the details of the book of Revelation. According to individual preferences they either apply a literal or symbolical/spiritual meaning to any given passage. Since they do not abide by the normal obvious sense of the text and show a disregard for the basic rules of hermeneutics, I have not been able to find even two Preterists who are wholly in agreement in their interpretations of the book of Revelation. Rather than lose ourselves in a morass of subjectivity concerning the details of their interpretations of Revelation, I will just focus on a few points in which they all seem to be in agreement.
The Temple of Revelation 11
“Then I was given a reed like a measuring rod. And the angel stood, saying, ‘Rise and measure the temple of God, the altar, and those who worship there. 2 But leave out the court (aule) which is outside the temple, and do not measure it, for it has been given to the Gentiles. And they will tread the holy city underfoot for forty-two months.” (Rev 11:1,2)
The Preterists present this passage as evidence that the book of Revelation was written before Herod’s Temple in Jerusalem was destroyed in AD 70. Welton represents the argument of most Preterists when he says:
“The first important detail here is the fact that the Temple is standing in the vision… This is yet another proof that Revelation was not written in AD 96. If it was written in AD 96, it makes no sense that John does not ever mention the ‘past’ destruction of Jerusalem and the Temple. Of course, the obvious reason he doesn’t mention it as a past event is because it wasn’t. Instead, he was prophesying it was about to happen. Also, it’s important to note that forty-two months is three and a half years, the exact length of time the siege of Jerusalem took place, from AD 66–70. It was started by the Emperor Nero (the beast) and ended finally under General Titus.” 
The Preterists, in order to establish a pre-AD 70 fulfillment of the book of Revelation, must demonstrate that the Temple being described in the vision of Revelation Chapter eleven is Herod’s Temple and not a future Temple on the same site. Further, they must demonstrate that the details of the forty-two months (1,260 days) correspond with the AD 66 – AD 70 Roman siege, rather than being prophetic of yet future events. Once again, however, the weight of evidence is not in their favor.
Revelation is not a history book.
Preterists argue that the mention of the Temple in Jerusalem is proof that Revelation was written before it was destroyed in AD 70. They say that if Jerusalem and Herod’s Temple had already been destroyed at the time of writing, John certainly would have mentioned such a significant historical event.
However, the focus of the book of Revelation is not upon historical events - it is a prophecy of future events. Also, we must keep in mind that John is writing to churches in far-away Asia Minor, more than a quarter of a century after Herod’s Temple had been destroyed. If God were to give revelation to the church concerning future events today in the 21st Century, it is doubtful that the prophet, even if he lived in New York, would enter into details concerning the 2001 terrorist attack upon the twin-towers in New York City, even though it was a significant historical event. Prophecy is not about history - it’s about the future. Therefore, the reason John doesn’t give details concerning the destruction of the Temple is not because it hadn’t yet taken place, but because he was prophesying, rather than giving a history lesson.
The measuring of the Temple.
Also, we can see that the details do not fit those of the historical Second Temple. Herod’s Temple was destroyed in AD 70, at the end of the Roman siege with not one stone upon another, just as Jesus predicted. John is commanded by the angel to measure the Temple and the worshipers within. He is then told not to measure the outer court. As we already saw in Chapter 5, the outer court (aule) is referred to as the “holy place” (topos hagios) in the Old Testament (Lev 6:16). It is where Jesus says that the abomination of desolation will be set up, marking the beginning the Great Tribulation in Matthew 24:15.
Why is John commanded to measure the Temple and its worshippers? Obviously, he wasn’t being commanded to measure the Herodian Temple. That would have been superfluous, since its measurements could have easily been obtained from existing records. Also, what purpose could be served by knowing the measurements of an already existing Temple? However, if they were dimensions of a future Temple in Jerusalem revealed to John in vision, then we can understand the importance of the measurements.
Although we do not know what the Temple of Revelation measured, its dimensions were obviously revealed to John since he measured it, even though he did not specify them for us. However, it was something measurable, although non-existent in John’s time, except in vision. To my way of understanding, based upon my past experience as a carpenter, measurements are normally given for future reference. They are usually related to something planned out but not yet in existence.
The Temple measurements revealed to Ezekiel were also for a Temple yet future at the time of writing (Ezek 40-48). At the time of Ezekiel’s vision, Jerusalem was also without a Temple, since the first Temple had already been destroyed by Nebuchadnezzar. The measurements were given to him, also using a measuring rod, just as we see in John’s vision. We also see that the Temple revealed in Ezekiel’s vision has reference to a yet future Temple because Herod’s Temple was much smaller. Daniel was also shown events related to a yet future Temple, since he wrote during the Babylonian captivity when there was no longer a Temple in Jerusalem (cf. Dan 8:11-14; 9:27; 12:11).
Contrary to the preterist argument for an early date based upon the mention of the Temple in Jerusalem, we see that John’s visions follow the same pattern established in Daniel and Ezekiel - prophesying concerning an as yet non-existent Temple.
The court is given to the Gentiles.
“But leave out the court (aule) which is outside the temple, and do not measure it, for it has been given to the Gentiles.” (Rev 11:2)
Why is John told to leave the court out of the measurements? The reason is stated: “for it has been given to the Gentiles.” I believe that this could potentially be more than relevant to the present situation in Israel. At present the Muslims do not even allow the Jews to pray on the Temple Mount. However, the Zionist Jews are determined not only to reclaim their right to pray on the mount, but are also actively working towards the rebuilding of the third Temple. The Temple Institute has been making preparations and seeking world-wide support for their right to have their own Temple on the Temple Mount.  Some Jews insist that the new Temple must be built on the present site of the Al-Aqsa Mosque. Although sharing the mount with the Muslims is unacceptable to most Zionists, others are willing to share the mount with the Muslims as well as people of other faiths in order to have their own Temple. Some have proposed building the Temple beside the existing Mosque. If this compromise is agreed upon, it could explain why the Temple court (Gr. aule) also referred to as the holy place (topos hagios) (cf. Lev 6:16 LXX), is said to be given to the Gentiles. In this manner it could easily become a representative inter-faith center for ecumenical religious unity, thus preparing the way for the false prophet to set up the Image of the Beast or the abomination of desolation in the holy place, also known as the Temple court, and putting an end to their daily sacrifices (Matt 24:15; Dan 9:27; Rev 13:14-18; 2Thess 2:4; Dan 11:36).
Forty-two-month Gentile occupation of the Holy City
“But leave out the court (aule) which is outside the temple, and do not measure it, for it has been given to the Gentiles. And they will tread the holy city underfoot for forty-two months.” (Rev 11:2)
Preterists argue that this verse has reference to the Roman siege of Jerusalem, which, according to them, lasted for three and a half years. Welton dogmatically states that this was precisely fulfilled at that time. Quoting his words again, he says:
“it’s important to note that forty-two months is three and a half years, the exact length of time the siege of Jerusalem took place, from AD 66–70. It was started by the Emperor Nero (the beast) and ended finally under General Titus.”  (emphasis mine)
Gentry, on the other hand, is more cautious when he states: “And the fact is that it took almost exactly forty-two months for Rome to get into a position to destroy the Temple in the Jewish War of A.D. 67-70”  (emphasis added) Gentry subtly admits that it cannot be established that the siege lasted exactly three and a half years, or to be more precise (as the angel was with John), 1,260 days. For a more in-depth study revealing the uncertainty as to the exact timing of the siege, I recommend Hitchcock’s dissertation. 
I would only like to point out one additional argument against the claim that the Roman siege lasted exactly forty-two months. If it was precisely fulfilled, the early church would have been the first to recognize it. However, the Early Church Fathers believed in a yet future forty-two-month fulfillment during the reign of the coming Antichrist.
Also, the fact that in Revelation 11:2 the Temple court is “given over to the Gentiles” and the Gentiles “will tread the holy city underfoot for forty-two months,” rules out a fulfillment during the Roman siege of Jerusalem, since the Roman army was neither within Jerusalem nor in the Temple court during the extended siege. They surrounded the city and sealed it off, but they did not enter until AD 70, when they finally breached the wall and destroyed the Temple.
Gentry recognizing this, says that it took the Romans forty-two months “to get into a position to destroy the Temple.” This does not coincide with the passage in Revelation 11. In the first place, we see that according to 11:2, both the Temple court and the city of Jerusalem will be occupied and dominated by Gentiles for forty-two months. They will not be outside the city walls until the very end, as was the case with the Roman siege from AD 66 to AD 70. Actually, the time of the siege was probably the first time ever under Roman rule when there were actually no Gentiles within the city of Jerusalem.
Secondly, there is no indication in Revelation that the Temple will be destroyed at the end of the forty-two months, as was the case in AD 70. If the detailed description in Revelation 11 were a description of the AD 70 destruction, we would expect it to end by saying: “And after the forty-two months are completed the city and the Temple shall be destroyed.” But rather than saying that, it simply limits the time of gentile occupation to forty-two months.
The Beast is not Nero.
Preterists identify the Beast of Revelation as Nero. However, Nero cannot possibly be the Beast mentioned here in Revelation 11, as becomes evident when we continue reading the passage:
“And I will give power to my two witnesses, and they will prophesy one thousand two hundred and sixty days, clothed in sackcloth.’ 4 These are the two olive trees and the two lampstands standing before the God of the earth. 5 And if anyone wants to harm them, fire proceeds from their mouth and devours their enemies. And if anyone wants to harm them, he must be killed in this manner. 6 These have power to shut heaven, so that no rain falls in the days of their prophecy; and they have power over waters to turn them to blood, and to strike the earth with all plagues, as often as they desire. 7 When they finish their testimony, the beast that ascends out of the bottomless pit will make war against them, overcome them, and kill them. 8 And their dead bodies will lie in the street of the great city which spiritually is called Sodom and Egypt, where also our Lord was crucified. 9 Then those from the peoples, tribes, tongues, and nations will see their dead bodies three-and-a-half days, and not allow their dead bodies to be put into graves. 10 And those who dwell on the earth will rejoice over them, make merry, and send gifts to one another, because these two prophets tormented those who dwell on the earth. 11 Now after the three-and-a-half days the breath of life from God entered them, and they stood on their feet, and great fear fell on those who saw them. 12 And they heard a loud voice from heaven saying to them, "Come up here." And they ascended to heaven in a cloud, and their enemies saw them. 13 In the same hour there was a great earthquake, and a tenth of the city fell. In the earthquake seven thousand people were killed, and the rest were afraid and gave glory to the God of heaven.” (Rev 11:3-13)
Simultaneous with the forty-two-month Gentile occupation of the Temple court and the city of Jerusalem, God raises up two witnesses who become a thorn in the side of the Beast and his followers. For the same period of forty-two months or 1,260 days, they will have power to testify unhindered. Then, after the 1,260 days - when they finish their testimony, the beast that ascends out of the bottomless pit will make war against them; overcome them and kill them. This presents an obvious problem for Preterists. The reign of the Beast is said to last for the forty-two-month period (Rev 13:5). His reign is brought to an abrupt end by the Second Coming of Christ (Rev 19:11-18). At Christ’s coming the Beast unites the nations in battle against Him and is defeated. The Beast is then cast alive, into the lake of fire, together with the false prophet (Rev 19:20).
This does not parallel with the life of Nero and the circumstances of his reign. Nero did not even live to see the destruction of Jerusalem. Neither was he cast alive with a false prophet into the lake of fire. He committed suicide on June 9 AD 68 after being displaced by Galba as Emperor. Throughout the brief time of the rebellion of Jerusalem, five Emperors were on the throne in Rome. Nero initially sent troops to quell the rebellion in Jerusalem. Shortly before he committed suicide Galba took power. Galba was followed by Otho, Vitellius, and finally Vespasian. When Vespasian assumed the throne in July of AD 69, he gave his son Titus (who would later become the tenth Emperor), the task of ending the Jerusalem rebellion. The actual siege itself took place under Titus’ command and only lasted six months - from February AD 70 to August AD 70. It wasn’t until the very end of the siege, in August AD 70, that the Romans were finally able to penetrate the northern wall and enter the city.
The city of Jerusalem and the Temple court was not occupied by Gentiles for forty-two months, as we see in Revelation 11. It was occupied by Jewish Zealots. Nero did not live to see the end of the Jewish revolt and the destruction of Jerusalem. So, he could not have put the “two witnesses” to death after 1,260 days. Therefore, Nero was not the Beast of Revelation.
The two witnesses
Preterists, in order to argue for a pre-AD 70 fulfillment of Revelation 11, must also find a historical fulfillment of the vision concerning the two witnesses. John is shown that for 1,260 days, the two witnesses will be prophesying in Jerusalem against the Beast and his followers. They are given supernatural power for protection until the forty-two months are completed. At the end of 1,260 days, the Beast will be allowed to kill them. While their dead bodies lay in the streets of Jerusalem for three-and-a-half days, the whole world will rejoice. But then God raises them from the dead, and before the watching world they are caught up in a cloud into heaven. Then Jerusalem is shaken by a great earthquake, killing 7,000 people. The rest give glory to God.
The Preterists are hard-pressed to find an AD 70 fulfillment, since there is no record of two prophets of God prophesying for three and a half years in Jerusalem from AD 66 to AD 70 with such phenomenal signs following their testimony. There is no record of two individuals being killed by Nero (or any other “Beast” for that matter), and then being raised from the dead after three and a half days and then caught up in a cloud while the world looked on. Neither is there any record of an earthquake killing 7,000 people in Jerusalem in AD 70 with the rest of the onlookers giving glory to God.
Many Futurists believe that the two witnesses will be Moses and Elijah who appeared with Jesus and were speaking with him on the mount of Transfiguration. As the disciples descended from the mount, they asked Jesus about the promise of the coming of Elijah, prophesied in Malachi 4:5,6. Jesus replied saying to them: “Indeed, Elijah is coming first and will restore all things.” (Matt 17:11). Surely, in the light of the context of Jesus’ words referring to a future coming of Elijah immediately after meeting with Elijah together with Moses, it is reasonable to surmise that the two witnesses who are to come before the day of the Lord could be Moses and Elijah.
This presents a problem for the Preterists who must find a pre-AD 70 fulfillment for the two witnesses. Since there was no known literal fulfillment during the siege of Jerusalem, they must resort to a symbolic fulfillment to explain the two witnesses. Welton explains their way of getting around this interpretive problem. He says:
“This passage is not talking about the actual Moses and Elijah; rather, Moses and Elijah are the symbols that represent the Law and the Prophets.” 
If it is as he claims, then several questions immediately come to mind: Were Moses and Elijah on the mount of transfiguration also symbols speaking with Jesus rather than persons? When Jesus explained that Elijah had already come in John the Baptist, He was referring to a person. When He said that Elijah would come and restore all things, are we to understand that it will not also be in a person as was the case with John the Baptist? Also, how could it be said that the “Law” and the “prophets” were killed and laid dead on the streets of Jerusalem for three and a half days? Welton anticipates this question and attempts to reply:
“The question is, If the two witnesses represent the Law and the Prophets, how can they be put to death? I believe the two witnesses (the Old Testament Law and Prophets) were witnessing about Jesus to the Jews before the AD 70 destruction, but ultimately the Law and the Prophets were ignored, rejected, and ‘killed’ by the Jews. The Law and the Prophets testified as witnesses of Jesus as the Messiah-King and of Israel as the covenant-breaking nation that stood guilty.” 
However, the text says that the Beast, and not the Jews, will kill the two witnesses. In what way did “Nero” kill the Law and the Prophets? This explanation only presents other anomalies with the text: In what sense were the bodies of the “Law” and the “Prophets” left unburied for three and a half days without being put in their graves? What motivated the world at that time to celebrate their death? Listen to Welton’s fanciful reply:
“In other words, the AD 70 world was happy to see Jerusalem destroyed and, with it, all the Old Testament rules, regulations, sacrifices, and ceremonies.” 
For the remaining details concerning their resurrection and ascension into heaven and the great earthquake, he refers us to R.C. Sproul’s creative explanation:
“After the dust from Jerusalem’s destruction had settled, ‘the breath of life from God’ came back into the two witnesses (Rev. 11:10). The voice of the Law and the prophets rose again. Then the two witnesses were called back into heaven (Rev. 11:12), but at that same time ‘there was a great earthquake’ (Rev. 11:13). As we have discussed before, in apocalyptic language earthquakes represented a demolition or transfer of authority. Indeed, two witnesses were taken to heaven, but the Law and the prophets continued to sound through the Church. The voices of two witnesses were transferred to the Church, and hence, the Law and the prophets continue sounding forth the voice of God even today.” 
This spiritualization of the text ignores the specific details of the vision. If the earthquake only represented a transfer of power, why bother saying that a tenth of the city fell and that there were 7,000 fatalities as a result of it? And why say that the survivors gave glory to God upon witnessing it? Even when the visions are symbolic and not literal, each detail of the vision must have a literal application. In my own personal opinion, the mental gymnastics required in order to follow their “interpretive” imagination is almost overwhelming. If the plain sense makes common sense, we should not seek any other sense - even if it means we must modify our doctrines to conform to the obvious meaning of the text.
Therefore, it should be evident to any unbiased reader that Revelation 11 is speaking of a yet future Temple in Jerusalem. None of the details of this vision correspond to the AD 70 destruction of Jerusalem and the Temple. The Temple court was not given to the Gentiles for three and a half years; Jerusalem was occupied by Jewish Zealots and not Gentile Roman soldiers; there is no record of two witnesses giving testimony in Jerusalem for 1,260 days, and their “Beast,” Nero, wasn’t even alive to kill them in AD 70. Also, as we saw in Chapter 3, the earliest Church Fathers, who were closest in time to the actual historical event of the AD 70 destruction of Jerusalem and the Temple, uniformly believed in a future Temple and a future Antichrist.
The Beast of Revelation
“Then I stood on the sand of the sea. And I saw a beast rising up out of the sea, having seven heads and ten horns, and on his horns ten crowns, and on his heads a blasphemous name. 2 Now the beast which I saw was like a leopard, his feet were like the feet of a bear, and his mouth like the mouth of a lion. The dragon gave him his power, his throne, and great authority. 3 And I saw one of his heads as if it had been mortally wounded, and his deadly wound was healed. And all the world marveled and followed the beast. 4 So they worshiped the dragon who gave authority to the beast; and they worshiped the beast, saying, ‘Who is like the beast? Who is able to make war with him?’ 5 And he was given a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies, and he was given authority to continue for forty-two months. 6 Then he opened his mouth in blasphemy against God, to blaspheme His name, His tabernacle, and those who dwell in heaven. 7 It was granted to him to make war with the saints and to overcome them. And authority was given him over every tribe, tongue, and nation. 8 All who dwell on the earth will worship him, whose names have not been written in the Book of Life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.” (Rev 13:1-8)
“The beast that you saw was, and is not, and will ascend out of the bottomless pit and go to perdition. And those who dwell on the earth will marvel, whose names are not written in the Book of Life from the foundation of the world, when they see the beast that was, and is not, and yet is.
9 Here is the mind which has wisdom: The seven heads are seven mountains on which the woman sits. 10 There are also seven kings. Five have fallen, one is, and the other has not yet come. And when he comes, he must continue a short time. 11 The beast that was, and is not, is himself also the eighth, and is of the seven, and is going to perdition.
12 The ten horns which you saw are ten kings who have received no kingdom as yet, but they receive authority for one hour as kings with the beast. 13 These are of one mind, and they will give their power and authority to the beast. 14 These will make war with the Lamb, and the Lamb will overcome them, for He is Lord of lords and King of kings; and those who are with Him are called, chosen, and faithful.” (Rev 17:8-14)
The Sixth King was not Nero
In order to establish an early date for the book of Revelation, Preterists must demonstrate that it was written prior to AD 66, during the reign of Nero. Furthermore, they must make out Nero as being the Beast of Revelation, since the three-and-a-half-year period they apply to Jerusalem’s destruction is also the time referred to as the reign of the Beast. Welton presents the seven kings of Revelation 17:10 as being Roman Emperors, with Nero as the sixth king of Revelation:
“They are also seven kings. Five have fallen, one is, the other has not yet come; but when he does come, he must remain for only a little while (Revelation 17:10). This passage, which is speaking of the line of rulers in Rome, tells us exactly how many rulers had already come, which one was currently in power, and that the next one would only last a short while. Take a look at how that perfectly fits with Nero and the Roman Empire of the first century. The rule of the first seven Roman Emperors are as follows:
Julius Caesar (49–44 BC)
Augustus (27 BC–AD 14)
Tiberius (AD 14–37)
Caligula (AD 37–41)
Claudius (AD 41–54) ‘Five have fallen...’
Nero (AD 54–68) “One is...”
Galba (June AD 68–January AD 69, a six-month ruler-ship) ‘the other has not yet come; but when he does come, he must remain for only a little while.’
Of the first seven kings of the Roman Empire, five had come (Julius Caesar, Augustus, Tiberius, Gaius, and Claudius), one was now in power (Nero), and one had not yet come (Galba), but would only remain a little time (six months). The vast majority throughout Church history have understood that the beast in Revelation 17 is a reference to Nero.” 
Contrary to Welton’s claim that “the vast majority throughout Church history have understood that the beast in Revelation 17 is a reference to Nero,” the most important witnesses throughout Church history – the early Church of the first five centuries, did not believe that Nero was the Beast. They regarded the Beast of Revelation to be one who would reign in their future, during the final three and a half years, and that his reign would come to an end by the Second Coming of Christ.
There are many reasons why Nero could not have been the Beast. We have already seen that Nero committed suicide on June 9, AD 68. Jerusalem and the Temple were not destroyed by Nero. It wasn’t destroyed until August of AD 70 after four other Emperors had already succeeded him on the throne. The Beast is permitted to reign over the world for three and a half years, during which time he is permitted to overcome the saints (Rev 13:5-8). After the three and a half years come to an end, he will cause the two witnesses to be put to death (Rev 11:7); he, together with the ten final kings, will form an army against Christ at His coming, and will be finally cast alive into the lake of fire and brimstone (Rev 17:14; 19:19-20). Preterists, on the other hand, have Christ coming through the Beast for the destruction of Jerusalem in AD 70.
Also, the list of Emperors Welton presents commences with Julius Caesar who is not recognized by any historian as a Roman Emperor. He was a general under the old Roman Republic who took power and governed a military state for four years between 49 and 44 BC. After his death, the Roman Senate continued to govern the Republic for another seventeen years before Augustus was finally declared the first Emperor of the new Roman Empire in 27 BC. Therefore, any historian would tell them that Galba was the sixth Emperor and not Nero.
Additionally, it isn’t likely that Galba fills the description of the seventh king, who is said to also be the eighth, and will reign for a little while. Galba was followed by more than one hundred and fifty Emperors - forty-eight of them between his reign and the reign of Constantine.
The book of Revelation puts the primary focus upon the seventh and final king, who reigns for a little while, together with the other ten kings (Rev 17:9-14). His brief reign, together with the ten kings, is brought to an abrupt end by the Second Coming of Christ to save His people Israel and unite with His Bride for the wedding feast. Not just the kingdom of the Beast, but all the kingdoms of man come to an end at the Second Coming, when the kingdoms of this world will have become the kingdoms of our Lord and of His Christ, and He shall reign forever and ever! (Rev 11:15).
The Preterists must also argue that the ten kings were involved in the AD 70 destruction of Jerusalem, since Revelation 17:12-14 says that they will reign with the Beast, whom Preterists claim was Nero. Harold Eberle, in Victorious Eschatology, seeks to demonstrate that the ten kings were providences of the Roman Empire who participated in the AD 66 – AD 70 war against Jerusalem. He argues the following:
“We also know that the Roman Empire was divided into ten regions with ten leaders governing those regions. This corresponds to the ten horns of the dragon.
The 10 Provinces of the Roman Empire: Achaia, Gaul, Africa, Germany, Asia, Italy, Britain, Spain, Egypt, Syria.” 
Even if it could be demonstrated that the Roman Empire was at that time divided into these ten provinces and all ten could somehow be demonstrated to have participated in the siege, the ten horns of the Beast could not have any application to them whatsoever, since John said that at the time of the vision, they were not yet kings:
“The beast that was, and is not, is himself also the eighth, and is of the seven, and is going to perdition. 12 “The ten horns which you saw are ten kings who have received no kingdom as yet, but they receive authority for one hour as kings with the beast. 13 These are of one mind, and they will give their power and authority to the beast. 14 These will make war with the Lamb, and the Lamb will overcome them, for He is Lord of lords and King of kings; and those who are with Him are called, chosen, and faithful.” (cf. Rev 17:11-14)
The text specifically states that the ten kings did not yet have a kingdom at the time the Revelation was given to John. The one hour they will have with the Beast will lead to war against the Lamb when He comes. Their corpses will lay upon the mountains of Israel (Isa 34:3). Christ – the Lamb, did not come with the Beast and the ten kings to destroy Israel, as Preterists would have us believe. Rather, the Beast and the ten kings will be destroyed by the Lamb, when He comes out of Zion to deliver His people Israel from the armies that come against Jerusalem (Rom 11:26).
The Seven Kings Represent Seven Empires throughout Israel’s History
What, or who, then, is represented by this final Beast, with seven heads and ten horns that is allowed to wield worldwide power for the final three and a half years prior to Christ’s Second Coming? A key to understanding Revelation is to see that it is built upon the foundation of the revelation given in the book of Daniel. To Daniel are revealed the four major powers that would affect God’s people Israel from his day down to the end of the age. We see in the Image shown in Nebuchadnezzar’s dream that the head was of gold (Dan 2:36-45). Daniel said to Nebuchadnezzar: “you are this head of gold.” Its chest and arms were silver and represented the Medo-Persian Empire which followed. Then came the third kingdom, the Greek Empire represented by the thighs of brass. The fourth kingdom was the Roman Empire represented by the legs of iron. The Roman Empire was divided into two divisions in AD 395, as represented by the legs. The final form, composed of the feet with the ten toes: part iron and part clay, are descriptive of the kingdom of the Beast in Revelation, with the seven heads and ten horns. It is at the close of this final kingdom when Christ will return:
“And in the days of these kings the God of heaven will set up a kingdom which shall never be destroyed; and the kingdom shall not be left to other people; it shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand forever.” (Dan 2:44)
Daniel was shown that in the days of the ten final kings, the kingdom of God will come like a rock cut without hands; falling from heaven and demolishing all the kingdoms of man; establishing an everlasting kingdom. While Preterists would argue that this event occurred in AD 70, it is obvious from the description that it is something that will happen suddenly when Christ comes. They must argue that Christ – the stone cut without hands, came and demolished the kingdoms of this world nearly two-thousand years ago – something that is pretty hard to demonstrate historically in a very convincing manner.
So, back to the question: Who are the seven kings, and who is the seventh king who will rule over ten kings? The seven kings are also called seven heads and seven hills. The heads are seven kings or kingdoms – five of them having come and gone before John’s time. The seven heads are also called seven “hills” which, in keeping with the symbolic nature of the vision, would speak of the rise and decline of powers - better describing empires which rise and decline than emperors. Had five empires already existed in Israel’s history with a sixth in power in John’s day? Yes. The one that was in John’s time was the Roman Empire. There are only five other empires in history, previous to Rome, who had any significant impact upon God’s chosen people. The first empire was the Egyptian Empire which enslaved the people of Israel. The second was the Assyrian Empire which conquered and dispersed the ten northern tribes of Israel. That takes us up to Daniel’s day when the third kingdom, the Babylonian Empire, took Judah captive. The fourth was the Medo-Persian Empire and the fifth was Greece.
That the seven heads are representative of World Empires rather than Roman Emperors can be further seen by comparing the beasts of Daniel’s vision with the beast of Revelation. Daniel’s vision is described in the following manner:
“The first was like a lion and had eagle's wings. I watched till its wings were plucked off; and it was lifted up from the earth and made to stand on two feet like a man, and a man's heart was given to it. 5 And suddenly another beast, a second, like a bear. It was raised up on one side, and had three ribs in its mouth between its teeth. And they said thus to it: 'Arise, devour much flesh!' 6 After this I looked, and there was another, like a leopard, which had on its back four wings of a bird. The beast also had four heads, and dominion was given to it. 7 After this I saw in the night visions, and behold, a fourth beast, dreadful and terrible, exceedingly strong. It had huge iron teeth; it was devouring, breaking in pieces, and trampling the residue with its feet. It was different from all the beasts that were before it, and it had ten horns. 8 I was considering the horns, and there was another horn, a little one, coming up among them, before whom three of the first horns were plucked out by the roots. And there, in this horn, were eyes like the eyes of a man, and a mouth speaking pompous words.” (Daniel 7:4-8)
Comparing the beasts of Daniel’s vision to that of Revelation we can observe important similarities:
“Then I stood on the sand of the sea. And I saw a beast rising up out of the sea, having seven heads and ten horns, and on his horns ten crowns, and on his heads a blasphemous name. 2 Now the beast which I saw was like a leopard, his feet were like the feet of a bear, and his mouth like the mouth of a lion.” (Rev 13:1,2)
Comparing the Beast of Revelation with both the image and the beasts of Daniel, we see that the Beast described in Revelation is a composite beast, made up of all four of the beasts of Daniel. It has the mouth of the first beast - Babylon; The feet of the second beast - Medo-Persia; the body of the third beast - Greece, and the ten horns of the fourth beast – Rome. The seven heads of the Beast of Revelation would also indicate that this final Empire will somehow also encompass all the six prior kingdoms.
Therefore, the final Beast of Revelation is not simply a revival of the Roman Empire or the fourth beast of Daniel, (although it is that). The ten horns of the Beast of Revelation are the ten horns of Daniel’s final beast which represents Rome. Also, the ten toes of Daniel’s image represent the latter form of the Roman Empire. However, the Beast of Revelation encompasses all the prior kingdoms as well.
The Personage of the Beast
The individual person of the Beast of Revelation is “the little horn” that rises among the ten horns or kings, and at some point, plucks up three of the ten horns by its roots (Dan 7:8). Even as Daniel referred to Nebuchadnezzar as the representative head of the first Empire – the head of gold (Dan 2:38), John, in Revelation often makes reference to the individual representative head of the beast of Revelation, who himself is called the Beast. It appears that the man referred to as the “Beast” receives a mortal wound as he is rising in influence:
“And I saw one of his heads as if it had been mortally wounded, and his deadly wound was healed. And all the world marveled and followed the beast. 4 So they worshiped the dragon who gave authority to the beast; and they worshiped the beast, saying, ‘Who is like the beast? Who is able to make war with him?’ 5 And he was given a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies, and he was given authority to continue for forty-two months.” (Rev 13:3-5)
“And he (the false prophet) exercises all the authority of the first beast in his presence, and causes the earth and those who dwell in it to worship the first beast, whose deadly wound was healed. 13 He performs great signs, so that he even makes fire come down from heaven on the earth in the sight of men. 14 And he deceives those who dwell on the earth by those signs which he was granted to do in the sight of the beast, telling those who dwell on the earth to make an image to the beast who was wounded by the sword and lived.” (Rev 13:12-14)
As we can see here, one of the heads (the person of the Beast), receives a mortal wound by the sword and raises back from the dead. When this happens, the whole world will worship him. He will be allowed to continue for forty-two months or three and a half years. In the light of the assassination and resuscitation of the seventh king or the Beast, we can now understand the enigmatic phrase in Revelation 17:11: “The beast that was, and is not, is himself also the eighth, and is of the seven, and is going to perdition.” In Revelation 17, John is being given more details of the Beast. In Chapter 13, John sees the seven-headed Beast arise out of the sea. Then, as he looks on, one of its heads is mortally wounded, only to be brought back to life. In Chapter 17, the angel explains to John that the one head that was assassinated was himself the seventh king and becomes the eighth when he is brought back to life. However, it will not be a true resurrection since the entity entering his corpse and giving him life will have ascended from the pit (17:8). This entity, inhabiting the body of the seventh king – thus becoming the eighth, will be given power for forty-two months and the whole world will be deceived by him.
A Mixed Alliance
In Nebuchadnezzar’s dream, the feet and the ten toes, made partly of iron and partly of clay, are explained by Daniel:
“Whereas you saw the feet and toes, partly of potter's clay and partly of iron, the kingdom shall be divided; yet the strength of the iron shall be in it, just as you saw the iron mixed with ceramic clay. 42 And as the toes of the feet were partly of iron and partly of clay, so the kingdom shall be partly strong and partly fragile. 43 As you saw iron mixed with ceramic clay, they will mingle with the seed of men; but they will not adhere to one another, just as iron does not mix with clay. 44 And in the days of these kings the God of heaven will set up a kingdom which shall never be destroyed; and the kingdom shall not be left to other people; it shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand forever.” (Dan 2:41-45)
Daniel says that the feet and toes will be made up of two elements which do not adhere one to the other. If the inclusion of elements of each of Daniel’s four beasts in the description of the Beast of Revelation is referring to the same geographical areas occupied by all of those prior Empires put together, then we would have a kingdom made up of an incompatible mix of western nations with radical Islamic Mid-Eastern and African nations, as we can see from the maps below. This would be a very volatile mix and could help explain the revival of the barbaric practice of decapitation as we see mentioned in Revelation (Rev 20:4).
Therefore, as we have seen, all evidence - both external and internal, indicate that the book of Revelation was written in AD 95 or AD 96, at the close of Domitian’s reign. Although the date of writing is not a vital issue for Futurists, it is absolutely essential for the Preterists to demonstrate that Revelation was written prior to AD 66, in order to argue that it prophecies an AD 66 – AD 70 destruction of Jerusalem. Otherwise, according to their interpretation, it would be a history book written after the fact rather than a revelation of future events. However, nothing they have to present warrants abandoning the Futurist interpretation of the Scriptures held by the Early Church Fathers for their more recent doctrine of Preterism.
This blog is an excerpt from my book: “Last Days – Past or Present?”
 Milton Terry, Biblical Apocalyptics (Whitefish, MT: Kessinger Publishing, 2009), 451.
 George Eldon Ladd, A Commentary on the Revelation of St. John (Grand Rapids: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1972. p. 22.
 Welton, Jonathan (2013-11-01). Raptureless: An Optimistic Guide to the End of the World - Revised Edition
Including The Art of Revelation (Kindle Location 2320). BookBaby. Kindle Edition.
 Welton, Jonathan (2013-11-01). Raptureless: An Optimistic Guide to the End of the World - Revised Edition Including The
Art of Revelation (Kindle Locations 5071-5077). BookBaby. Kindle Edition.
 Welton, Jonathan (2013-11-01). Raptureless: An Optimistic Guide to the End of the World - Revised Edition Including The
Art of Revelation (Kindle Locations 5075-5077). BookBaby. Kindle Edition.
 Gentry, Kenneth Before Jerusalem Fell: Dating the Book of Revelation. Tyler TX: Institute for Christian Economics, 1989, p. 250.
 Hitchcock, Mark. “A Defense of the Domitianic Date of the Book of Revelation.” Dissertation for Dallas Theological Seminary. December 2005. p. 28. http://www.pre-trib.org/data/pdf/hitchcock-dissertation.pdf
 Welton, Jonathan (2013-11-01). Raptureless: An Optimistic Guide to the End of the World - Revised Edition
Including The Art of Revelation (Kindle Locations 5088-5089). BookBaby. Kindle Edition.
 Welton, Jonathan (2013-11-01). Raptureless: An Optimistic Guide to the End of the World - Revised Edition
Including The Art of Revelation (Kindle Locations 5112-5116). BookBaby. Kindle Edition.
 Welton, Jonathan (2013-11-01). Raptureless: An Optimistic Guide to the End of the World - Revised Edition
Including The Art of Revelation (Kindle Locations 5132-5133). BookBaby. Kindle Edition.
 R.C Sproul, The Last Days According to Jesus (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books, 1998), 186-187.
 Welton, Jonathan (2013-11-01). Raptureless: An Optimistic Guide to the End of the World - Revised Edition Including The
Art of Revelation (Kindle Locations 2387-2397). BookBaby. Kindle Edition.
 Eberle, Harold R. (2007-12-04). Victorious Eschatology (Kindle Locations 2390-2406). Worldcast Publishing.