Saturday, October 18, 2014

Preterists and Pre-Tirbulationists

I find it amusing when I see people who hold a Preterist and/or Amillenial view of Revelation/Matthew 24 joining the trendy chorus of Post-Tribbers in mocking Pre-Trib and going on about how there is no mass vanishing in The Bible.

However the basic fallacy that lies behind the Secret Rapture doctrine, That Christ's Coming described in 1 Thessalonians 4 could go mostly unnoticed, that he won't be seen by every single living person, is needed for Preterism to work too.

But Pre-Tribbers at least see it as a world wide event, while Preterists mostly think what was visible to the world was only seen in Jerusalem.  Citing Supernatural events described by Josephus and Tacitus and The Yossipon (I could do a whole post on Yossipon if an English version was available to the masses).

Preterism views the 70th Week of Daniel as the 7 years of the First Jewish-Roman War.  With the Abomination of Desolation event happening in it's 4th year in 70 AD.  One Preterist website I was reading cited historical references to what they view as the "Spiritual Resurrection" (reading this website made me realize how Gnostic full preterism tends to be) fulfilling 1 Corinthians 15, places them in 66 AD.

And some will add an event Cassius Dio and Suetonius record Nero seeing in Greece.  This must have been earlier then 70 AD.

One event they refereed to happened on Pentacost 66 AD, at the start of the War.  So they're even specifically Pre-Trib in timing.

And this same Website refereed to multiple returns of Jesus during the 60s and 70s AD.  So they don't even agree with those Post-Tribbers on only one "Second Coming".

All those three basic Biblical points of contention they are with Pre-Trib on more then any other Futurist model.  All they share with Post-Trib is Replacement theology.  And that makes no sense, all us Futurists who believe in Two Comings believe it's because he has two covenant people to come back for.  These Preterists have Jesus doing all this back and forth for not much of a reason at all.

On the subject of the Pentecost incident record by Josephus, Tacitus and Yossipon (the latter two are merely adapting Josephus to suit their own agendas).

Josephus The Wars of the Jews 6.5.3.
"Moreover, at that feast which we call Pentecost, as the priests were going by night into the inner [court of the temple,] as their custom was, to perform their sacred ministrations, they said that, in the first place, they felt a quaking, and heard a great noise, and after that they heard a sound as of a great multitude, saying, "Let us remove hence.""
 “The doors of the holy place abruptly opened, a superhuman voice was heard to declare that the gods were leaving it, and in the same instant came the rushing tumult of their departure.”
Sepher Yosippon, Trans. Dr. Steven Bowman, Ch. 87, Burning of the Temple, cited in Edward E. Stevens, First Century Events in Chronological Order: From the Birth of Christ to the Destruction of Jerusalem in A.D. 70, (Pre-publication manuscript, 2008), 59-60.
  “When the holiday of Shavouth came in those days, during the night the priests heard within the Temple something like the sound of men walking, the sound of many men’s marching feet walking within the Temple, and a terrible and mighty voice was heard speaking, ‘Let’s go and leave this House.’”
 This doesn't seem like a Resurrection to me, but the divine presence leaving The Temple.  Josephus does not claim to have been an eyewitness to this event.  He was near Jerusalem but not in her at the time.  The Talmud says the Door of The Temple suddenly flew open 40 years before The Temple was destroyed.  Same year I believe Jesus was Crucified.  Maybe Josephus had deliberately changed or been mislead on when this happened.  Maybe this is the divine presence of The Holy Spirit leaving the Temple made of Stone and entering The Body of Christ on the Pentecost of 30 AD.  After the Veil was Torn.

In this same account, during the Feast of Unleavened Bread before this Pentecost Josephus says.
Moreover, the eastern gate of the inner [court of the] temple, which was of brass, and vastly heavy, and had been with difficulty shut by twenty men, and rested upon a basis armed with iron, and had bolts fastened very deep into the firm floor, which was there made of one entire stone, was seen to be opened of its own accord about the sixth hour of the night. Now those that kept watch in the temple came hereupon running to the captain of the temple, and told him of it; who then came up thither, and not without great difficulty was able to shut the gate again.
Before this it also talked about a strange Light in the Temple at the ninth hour, and a heifer giving birth to a Lamb.  Both signs that were originally interpreted as positive things but that Josephus insists the learned men knew were signs of disaster.

In Jerome's commentary on Matthew he repeatedly mentions differences that Gospel has in the version used by a sect of Jewish Christians (who's over all views he may or may not be misrepresenting) he called the Nazarenes or Ebonites.  When discussing Matthew 27:51 he says this Gospel claimed the lintel of The Temple was broken and split.

The Talmud actually claims the Veil was Torn because Titus slashed it with his Sword, in a passage Preterists love to quote as proving he committed an Abomination of Desolation.  So there is a precedent for the concept that some people wanted to move things that happened to the Temple in 30 AD up to 70 AD.

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