The view of the Roman Empire given in these chapters fits in well with what we know of the relatively benign rule of Nero in his early years when he was under the influence of the philosopher Seneca (Nero reigned from AD54-68). Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window), Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window), Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window), Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window), Click to share on Tumblr (Opens in new window), Click to share on Pinterest (Opens in new window), Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window), Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window), What is the Mark of the Beast? Long has taught full time at Grace Christian University since 1998, specializing in Bible and Biblical languages. ][unreliable source? In answer to this argument, we cite R. H. Gundry: Archaeological discoveries and literary studies have recently demonstrated that along with Aramaic and Hebrew, Greek was commonly spoken among first century Palestinians. So the date of the book exactly can be interpreted differently by different scholars depending on which section of the book they decided to read first. This list mentions it as a part of the New Testament canon.  He was a Jewish Christian prophet, probably belonging to a group of such prophets, and was accepted by the congregations to whom he addresses his letter. The people of earth retreat to caves in the mountains (6:15). According to Polycarp the Church at Smyrna was not founded until after the death of Paul, so it could not have been born any earlier than around AD64-67.  For example, narrative critics examine characters and characterization, literary devices, settings, plot, themes, point of view, implied reader, implied author, and other constitutive features of narratives in their analysis of the book. All of the secular evidence for persecution under Domitian comes from after his reign. (15:6–8), First Bowl: A "foul and malignant sore" afflicts the followers of the Beast. (5:6–14), First Seal: A white horse appears, whose crowned rider has a bow with which to conquer. Are they the Same in Scripture? The majority of the early church assumed that it was under Domitian’s persecution that the book was written. According to Pope Benedict XVI some of the images of Revelation should be understood in the context of the dramatic suffering and persecution of the churches of Asia in the 1st century. In her view, what Revelation has to teach is patience. If, however, this persecution is dated in the time of Nero, how does one account for the fact that Peter and Paul are murdered, yet John is only exiled to an island? From out of the smoke, locusts who are "given power like that of scorpions of the earth" (9:3), who are commanded not to harm anyone or anything except for people who were not given the "seal of God" on their foreheads (from chapter 7) (9:4). We will now examine the evidence for this. However, the last one hundred years have seen a surge of support for the AD 65 date under the reign of Nero (this is the “preterist” or “partial preterist” view). Although the acceptance of Revelation into the canon has, from the beginning, been controversial, it has been essentially similar to the career of other texts. Fourth, several secular historians and early church writers specifically mention that John was exiled under the reign of Domitian. Apostles Peter and Paul are estimated to have died under Roman Emperor Nero’s reign. The people of the world wonder and follow the Beast. Rather they were the victory of the anti-Christian Roman Empire over the Jewish revolt. Joel, Although I once believed in such a late date for the Johannine books, I did not have a single verse to support that position. Christina Rossetti, "Christians should resemble fire-flies, not glow-worms; their brightness drawing eyes upward, not downward.". In his comments on Revelation chapter 17 Victorinus states: Accordingly, it is useful to understand the time in which the Apocalypse was written, because Domitian was Caesar then. Enter your email to subscribe to our newsletter and receive new articles straight to your inbox. Surely it would have required more than eight or nine years for that city to have risen again to the state of affluence described in Revelation. I have examined some of the preterist arguments for the 65 AD date and there appears to be four main arguments for the early date based on internal evidence in Revelation. It kills a third of the sea creatures and destroys a third of the ships at sea. The point remains the same, like Miller said. , The Synod of Hippo (in 393), followed by the Council of Carthage (397), the Council of Carthage (419), the Council of Florence (1442 AD) and the Council of Trent (1546 AD) classified it as a canonical book. Nor will this age end in the triumphant Church imposing Christianity on the nations. Obviously, if Revelation was written after AD 70, then the book could not be a prophecy of the destruction of Jerusalem. Condition of the Churches in Revelation 2-3. G. K. Beale believes that, however much John makes use of Ezekiel, his ultimate purpose is to present Revelation as a fulfillment of Daniel 7.  Poetry was also the reason John never directly quoted the older prophets. The chariot's horses in Zechariah's are the same colors as the four horses in Revelation (Zech 6:1–8; Rev 6:1–8). Oppression of Christians in Asia under Domitian. They were local in character and largely confined to the area around Rome itself. It is hard to believe that the two situations could be contemporary, as must be the case if Revelation were written before AD70. This is possible only by pursuing the most irresponsible form of exegesis. Most interpreters date the book c. 95.