Early dating of revelation
We need only go back to the turn of the present century to find (to our surprise) that what was then taken for granted as the scholarly conclusion about the date of Revelation was just the opposite of the claims made above.Consider, for instance, the standard reference work found in most theological libraries, the edited by James Hastings in five large volumes. notes how "the great Cambridge theologians of the last century, "Westcott, Lightfoot, and Hort, held the book to be a unity and assigned it to the time after Nero's death and before the destruction of Jerusalem.This work was published 1898-1904, when the dominating opinion regarding the book of Revelation was indicated in these words: "the majority of modern critics are of the opinion that the book was written in the time of Nero." That Nero is denoted by the beast and its number is "the almost a fixed assumption of critics," "the ruling critical opinion," and "almost a fixed assumption of critics." Having endorsed the preterist approach to the book as most correct, an author says "In general these [preterist] writers date the book before 70"; indeed , as to the date for Revelation, the "ruling view of critics" has been 66-69 A. Torrey observes that, if there are few dissenting voices from the late date in our generation, It was not so in former years, Swete. Many of the foremost German scholars of the same period were in essential agreement with this dating, as is well known.
It cannot be stressed enough today that responsible scholarship must undergird one's choice concerning the time when Revelation was written.D., then he would obviously have been speaking of the Jerusalem, temple, and Empire of his day - the first two of which, as prophesied, were destroyed just a few years following the temple in 70 A. These, the dominant positions, call for study and careful scrutiny. an earlier dating fixes the end of Nero's reign or shortly thereafter. In what follows "the late date" for Revelation will denote the end of Domitian's reign as emperor (viz., the mid to late 60's of the first century).D., then the interpreter would be inclined to the rebuilding of the temple, for instance, but some interpreters infer such a rebuilding from their understanding of the text in conjunction with their understanding of the book's date.) The alternative would be to deny that Revelation had any historical reference to an empirical city or temple whatsoever (i.e., to thoroughly "spiritualize" the references to Jerusalem and the temple there), or to follow many liberal critics in contending that John wrote after the fact but to prophesy what happened. Harrison says: Two periods for the origin of the Revelation have won considerable scholarly support, and only these two need be considered. The early date is elastic enough to encompass the first year of Vespasian's reign, which has been suggested by some of the scholars who disagree with the Domitian dating of the book (e.g., Hort/Dusterdieck, F. Bruce). The thought here would be that, counting from Augustus and omitting the three brief rulers during the anarchy of 68-69, Vespasian is the sixth king ("the one is," Rev. Torrey) who cannot persuade themselves to ignore the three, brief claimants to the throne, but who do commence counting the kings of Revelation with Augustus, have suggested that Galba was the emperor when John wrote Revelation (i.e., the king who "is").So then, if one reads "the holy city shall they tread under foot" (Rev. One is the reign of Domitian, preferable the latter part, around the year 96. ) who brought recovery to the empire from the threat of civil war ("the death-stroke" of the beast "was healed," Rev. But this hardly differentiates the sixth and seventh kings in terms of the shortness of the latter's reign (Rev.11:2) in a natural sense and as genuine prophecy he will need to decide whether John was speaking of the Jerusalem that is now past to us rather contemporaneous (perhaps future) to us. 13:2) and was followed by the two year reign of Titus ("the other," seventh king who will "continue a short while," Rev. The counting on this view commences with Augustus since he was the first official emperor, and the three rules of the anarchy are skipped because Seutonius wrote of their period as a mere interval and the provinces never recognized them as emperors. , "a little while") since Galba and his successor, Otho, reigned for only 2 matter of months.