John’s Revelation Unveiled – Part 1

                                                           1 Rev. 1:5f. The Johannine authorship is attested to in Rev. 1:1,4,9 & 22:8. This is asserted also by Justin Martyr, Irenaeus, Tertullian, Clement of Alexandria, and the Muratorian Canon. Mt. 27:56f & Mk. 15:40 & Jh. 19:25f, taken together, perhaps suggest that this author may even have been the half-cousin of our Lord Jesus Christ Himself. 2 The Book of Revelation was possibly and perhaps even probably inscripturated about 65 and before 70 A.D. Rev. 1:4,9,11; 2:10; 3:10; 13:3f; 14:8,10f; 17:1,9-11,16-18; 18:2,8f; 20:4,9 & 21:10f. See too Rev. 1:9 etc. above, with Dan. 12:1 and Mt. 24:1-8,16,21,28 & Acts 18:2. It should be remembered that the early Church Historian Orosius records that Nero's A.D. 64f persecutions of Christians spread far beyond Rome. For other authorities in the Early Church even before Irenaeus (and most of the writers in the Early Church after him) assume an early (Neronic) date for the inscripturation of the Book of Revelation (cf. n. 4 below). A date of about 64-66 A.D. for the writing down of the Book of Revelation is suggested by various Introductions to Ancient Syrian translations, by Melito of Sardis (175 A.D.), by the Muratorian Canon (180), and by Tertullian (220). In the Early Church, it was only Irenaeus who perhaps assumed a late date of 95 A.D. for the writing down of the Book of Revelation. He stated it had been written during Domitian's persecutions of Christians  conceivably those during the nineties. Yet even Irenaeus  as distinct from Eusebius's later (mis?)interpretation of Irenaeus  may well have been referring to an earlier Domitianic persecution of Christians during the late sixties. See at our n. 4 below. Compare too F.N. Lee's manuscript Revelation & Jerusalem: Apocalypse Written Before 70 A.D. (Jesus Saves, Brisbane, Australia, unpub., 1983)  as approvingly cited by K.L. Gentry Jr.'s doctoral dissertation Before Jerusalem Fell: Dating the Book of Revelation (Institute for Christian Economics, Tyler, Tx., 1989, pp. 35 & 58f & 103n.). Advocates of the Early-Church-in-general's earlier (Neronic) date for the Book of Revelation, include: Epiphanius, Andreas of Caesarea, Arethas of Caesarea, Theophylact, Annius, Caponsacchius, Hentenius, Salmeron, Alcazar, Grotius, Hammond, Wettstein, Harenberg, Herder, Hartwig, Guerike, Moses Stuart, Adam Clarke, Zuellig, Luecke, Bleek, Duesterdieck, Lightfoot, Westcott, Hort, Van Andel, A.S. Barnes, J.M. Ford, C. Vanderwaal, Leon Morris, J.A.T. Robinson, F.N. Lee, K.L. Gentry Jr., and D. Chilton. Significantly, the A.D. 400 Church Father Epiphanius gave a very early date to the Book of Revelation  based on Mt. 24:7 & Acts 11:28 & 18:2 cf. Rev. 6:2-8.

Christ has made us Kings unto God, to reign on the Earth 

Caesar Nero ruled the Roman Empire from A.D. 54 to 68. It seems quite likely that at least some of the immediate tribulations of Christians referred to in the Book of Revelation, were those suffered as a result of the persecution which broke out after Nero falsely accused the Christians of instigating the burning of Rome in the July of 64 A.D.

In that case, Revelation would have been written probably just a year or so later  during the year immediately before 66-67. That would have been just three-and-one-half years  or "time [and] two times and half-atime"(?)  before the A.D. 70 Pagan-Roman destruction of the temple in Jerusalem.3 Thus very many Theologians  such as Lightfoot, Westcott, Hort, Leon Morris, Vanderwaal, Francis Nigel Lee, Chilton and Gentry.

On the other hand, others think (with Eusebius and Enoch Pond) that the immediate tribulations referred to in the last book of the Bible were those suffered during Caesar Domitian's later persecution of Christians.4 In that case, Revelation would have been written around A.D. 95f.

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