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Administrative - New Classification:
Progressive Full Preterism

This classification is a holding pen for reconsideration of works previously labeled as "Hyper Preterism".  Includes the works of nominal Full Preterists who have in actuality do not hold to the heretical dispensationalism of the teaching that "ALL Bible prophecy was fulfilled by AD70" -- Many mistakenly self-apply the label "Full Preterist" (Including "Postmillennial Paradise Preterists" such as David Chilton; or, "Immortal Body at Death" Preterists such as Arthur Melanson and Idealist/Eclectic Preterists such as Patrick Stone).
 

The "Immortal Body at Death" View of Full Preterism, in general, is under reconsideration for classification.  To be determined - this question: If the judgment and resurrection are said to be ongoing through the Christian Age, then doesn't that make "The Resurrection" unfulfilled in AD70?  If IBD can answer "yes" to that question, then perhaps it is not Hyper Preterism.

The view that the "Second Coming was in AD70" is also under review.  Orthodox commentators such as Hammond and Lightfoot taught as much -- yet while acknowledging a future coming to themselves.   The doctrine that the second and ONLY coming was in AD70 is heretical.

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What is Bimillennial Preterism?

By Kurt M. Simmons

   Bimillennial Preterism is a school of Biblical eschatology that advocates there are two millennial periods contemplated by the text of Rev. 20:1-6, rather than the traditional single millennium advanced by other schools and commentators.  (The prefix "bi-" is from the Latin "bis," meaning "twice;" "millennium" is from the Latin “mille,” “a thousand” and “annum,” “a year.”  Hence, Bimillennial means “two millennia,” or "two one thousands.")  "Preterism" holds that Biblical eschatology was fulfilled in the first generation of the church, within the lives of inspired apostles and prophets of the Lord.  The term is derived from the Latin "praeterit," meaning “pass before.”  The term occurs in Matt. 24:34, where Jesus stated that the end of the Mosaic economy, the destruction of Jerusalem, and his second coming would transpire within the lives of the apostles:  "Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass (haec generatio non praeteribit), till all these things be fulfilled." (Cf. Matt. 10:23; 16:27, 28)  Here follows the text of Rev. 20:1-6, then a brief discussion of Pre-, Post-, and A- Millennialism, and finally, a discussion of Bimillennialism. 

And I saw an angel come down from heaven, having the key of the bottomless pit and a great chain in his hand.  And he laid hold on the dragon, that old serpent, which is the Devil, and Satan, and bound him a thousand years, and cast him into the bottomless pit, and shut him up, and set a seal upon him, that he should deceive the nations no more, till the thousand years should be fulfilled: and after that he must be loosed a little season.                                                                                                                                        (Rev. 20:1-3) And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them: and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years.  But the rest of the dead lived not again until the thousand years were finished.  This is the first resurrection.  Blessed and holy is he that hath part in the first resurrection: on such the second death hath no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with him a thousand years. (Rev. 20:4-6)  Premillennialism      The above verses have given birth to numerous interpretive schools.  Among the early church fathers, some saw a literal, physical thousand-year reign of Christ on earth portrayed in the text.  This system of interpretation is traditionally styled "chiliasm" from the Greek chilia, meaning a thousand.  An example of this may be seen in the writings of Lactantius (A.D. 260-330):

But He, when He shall have destroyed unrighteousness, and executed His great judgment, and shall have recalled to life the righteous, who have lived from the beginning, will be engaged among men a thousand years, and will rule them with most just command...Then they who shall be alive in their bodies shall not die, but during those thousand years shall produce an infinite multitude, and their offspring shall be holy, and beloved by God; but they who shall be raised from the dead shall preside over the living as judges...About the same time also the prince of the devils, who is the contriver of all evils, shall be bound with chains, and shall be imprisoned during the thousand years of the heavenly rule in which righteousness shall reign in the world, so that he may contrive no evil against the people of God...Throughout this time beasts shall not be nourished by blood, nor birds by prey; but all things shall be peaceful and tranquil.  Lions and calves shall stand together at the manger, the wolf shall not carry off the sheep, the hound shall not hunt for prey; hawks and eagles shall not injure; the infant shall play with serpents.[1]

    From what Lactantius writes, it is clear that among the characteristic features of chiliasm is a willingness to find in the language of scripture a wondrous, physical regeneration of the earth, including all of its creatures, during the millennium.  The notion that the language of scripture is symbolic and that there is a latent, spiritual meaning within the symbolism of the text is completely away from this interpretive school.  Hence, in the regeneration wolf and kid lay down together, the little child plays over the hole of the asp, etc.  Literally!  The whole creation is wonderfully and marvelously recreated for the millennial reign of Christ on earth.  Although chiliasm failed to achieve lasting credibility in the church (and for good reason), there have always been adherents to this school.  Today, the heirs of chiliasm are called “Premillennialists”; "pre" signifies that Christ is to return prior to his purported thousand-year reign on earth.  Premillennialism teaches that the church is merely an emergency measure, a substitute for the kingdom promised in the Old Testament prophecies.  According to Premillennialism, Jesus came to establish an earthly kingdom; however, when the Jews rejected him an unforeseen crisis developed and Jesus began to announce an entirely new aspect which his kingdom was to assume - a new spiritual contingent called the church.  Thus, the church and crucifixion were no part of God’s original plan and stand, not as the fulfillment of the Old Testament types and shadows (Col. 2:14-17; Heb. 10:1-4), but as temporary, provisional measures instituted until Christ’s second coming.  At his return, the kingdom postponed at his first coming will be established, Christ will reign a thousand years on earth, the devil will be bound, Christ will sit on David's throne in Jerusalem, the temple will be rebuilt, its service reinstituted, and the Jews will submit to Christ en masse.  Although the whole system is in error, the notion that the church and crucifixion were not part of God’s eternal purpose (Eph. 3:1-11) is heterodox; it is a denial of the inspiration and immutability of scripture.  According to the logical consequences of Premillennialism, if the Jews had accepted Christ at his first coming, there would have been no crucifixion and, hence, no atoning sacrifice for mankind’s sin.  Moreover, the idea that the temple and its services are to be reinstituted with the approbation of God is no less serious, for the temple and sacrifices are an implicit denial of the remission of sins by the atoning blood of Christ. “For where remission of these is, there is no more offering for sin.”  (Heb. 10:18)  The worshippers once purged, “would they not have ceased to be offered?”  “But in those sacrifices there is a remembrance again made of sins every year.”  (Heb. 10:2, 3; cf. Col. 2:16, 17)  Hence, not only does Premillennialism effectively deny the cross of Christ, it makes God a repudiator of it as well by approving reinstitution of the temple service in Jerusalem during Christ’s millennial reign.  Yet, it was their very adherence to the temple and its service that marked out the Jews as the enemies of Christ in seeking to perpetuate a system founded in denial and unbelief.  “He that killeth an ox is as if he slew a man; he that sacrificeth a lamb, as if he cut off a dog’s neck; he that offereth an oblation, as if he offered swine’s blood; he that burneth incense, as if he blessed an idol.”  (Isa. 66:3)  As long as the temple service on earth endured, it stood in denial of Christ’s priesthood in heaven; as long as the nation endured it stood in denial of his kingdom.  Return to the temple service is nothing less than apostasy from Christ.  “For if I rebuild again the things which I destroyed, I make myself a transgressor.” (Gal. 2:18; cf. Heb. 10:26-29; 13:8-10)  Far from coming to establish an earthly kingdom and reinstitute the temple service, Christ’s second coming was to destroy these types which stood in denial of his Sonship, substitutionary death, and atoning blood.  “A voice of noise from the city, a voice from the temple, a voice of the Lord that rendereth recompence to his enemies.”  (Isa. 66:6; cf. Matt. 24:3, 34; Acts 6:13; Heb. 9:26-28; 10:37; 12: 27, 28)  Premillennialism is a dangerous doctrine that must be rejected; it bears in it seeds that deny the very gospel of Christ.  Sound exegesis of scripture requires that the thousand-year period(s) of Revelation be understood as veiled symbols of basic spiritual truths plainly declared in other places, and not literal periods describing physical events yet to be take place in Palestine.[2] 

Postmillennialism 

  The basic premise of Postmillennialism is that the personal, second coming of Christ and end of the world will follow the millennial reign of the saints on earth.  This school has it that Satan is now bound and that the saints presently reign in the kingdom (church) of Christ.  According to this interpretation, the first resurrection speaks to the spiritual regeneration of the elect; the thousand-year reign stands for a period of indefinite length, beginning with Christ's earthly ministry and ending at his personal coming to destroy the world, and raise the dead.  However, whereas in Premillennialism the thousand-year period is interpreted literally, with Postmillennialism it is understood figuratively.   Among the basic flaws of this system is that, like Premillennialism, it introduces a period of exceeding length and duration between the apostolic age and the end of the world.  A fair reading of Biblical eschatology, however, shows that the early church was taught to be in earnest expectation of Christ’s imminent return.  Nowhere is there the least suggestion that the end would be postponed for thousands of years. At every turn the New Testament writers affirm that it would come upon their generation.  (Matt. 10:23; 16: 27, 28; 24:34; I Cor. 1:7, 8; 7:29; Heb. 10:37; Jm. 5:8, 9; I Pet. 4:7; I Jno. 2:18; Rev. 1:2, 3; 2:5, 16, 25; 3:3, 11; 16:15; 22:6, 10, 12, 20)  As a system of “partial preterism,” Postmillennialism concedes that most of Revelation spoke to events fulfilled in the first century; however, as a system of futurism it maintains the end is not yet come, interposing a period symbolized by the thousand years between the first century and end or the world and resurrection of the dead. Postmillennialism generally holds that the fall of Babylon, the Beast, and False Prophet belong to the first century, but places a figurative millennium between these events and the personal coming of Christ to raise the dead and destroy the world.   Against this, it should be pointed out that Paul plainly joins the destruction of the man of sin (the animator of the Beast) to the coming of Christ and the general resurrection.  (I Thess. 4: 13-18; II Thess. 2:1-12)  There is no suggestion anywhere in the New Testament that there would be a long, indefinite period consisting of thousand of years separating these eschatological events.  The plain statements of scripture pointing to the imminent, first century fulfillment of God’s redemptive and eschatological purpose control our interpretation of Revelation’s symbols.  Because the notion of a prolonged absence of Christ is nowhere a part of the teaching of the gospels and epistles, we cannot, consistent with the analogia fidei and scripturae, interpret John to teach such here.  With Premillennialism, Postmillennialism must be rejected.

Amillennialism

  The "A-" in Amillennialism is a simple negation; Amillennialism holds that there is no literal millennial kingdom and that the millennium is a figure for the reign of the deceased saints in heaven with Christ.  Other than the idea that the first resurrection describes the reign of the saints in heaven versus the regeneration of the saints on earth, there is little real or practical difference between A- and Post- millennialism.  Both hold that the church age is the kingdom era; both hold Satan was bound during Christ's earthly ministry and is bound at present; both look for a future, definitive contest between light and darkness when Satan is released, followed by his destruction and the resurrection of the dead at the personal coming of Christ to end the world.  With Postmillennialism, Amillennialism generally, though not universally, dissevers the second coming of Christ to raise the dead and destroy the world from the defeat of the Harlot, Beast, and False Prophet by introducing a figurative thousand-year period between them.  For the rest, differences between the two systems seem to lie more in terms of Biblical ethics than in Biblical eschatology; for present purposes, they require no discussion.[3] 

Bimillennial Preterism

  Our survey completed, we are prepared to discuss Bimillennial Preterism.  The brief descriptions provided above of Pre-, Post-, and A- millennialism reveal that they have these features in common:     1) Revelation 20:1-6 contemplate a single, millennial period;     2) The millennium begins with the binding of Satan;     3) The millennium will end upon the release of Satan; and     4) There is a future, personal coming of Christ to raise the dead and destroy the world.

Bimillennial Preterism denies each of these suppositions and holds instead that:

    1) Revelation 20:1-6 contemplates two millennial periods defined a) by the binding of the Dragon and b) the reign of the saints and martyrs in paradise;      2) The millennium marking the binding of the Dragon (Rome) began with the collapse of the persecution that arose over Stephen and the ascent of Claudius to the imperial throne; this millennium ended with the release of the Dragon by the persecution under Nero Caesar;      3) The millennium describing the reign of the martyrs (the first resurrection) spoke to  the victory and blessed state of the saved in paradise from and after Abel until the general resurrection when it ends; and      4) The second coming of Christ, the end of the age, and the resurrection of the dead occurred in the events culminating in the destruction of Jerusalem in A.D. 70.

  Comparison of the points above will show that Bimillennial Preterism departs from traditional eschatology in two basic ways: First, the basic assumption of the other schools is that Christ’s second, personal coming to raise the dead and destroy the world are wanting to fulfill God’s eschatological purpose.  In this regard, Pre-, Post-, and A- millennialism are variations of futurist eschatology; they differ from one another only in questions of when and how Christ will return to end the world, but are agreed in the conclusion that these events have not yet been fulfilled.  In its affirmation that the second advent of Christ and the resurrection of the dead occurred in the events culminating in the destruction of Jerusalem, Bimillennial Preterism offers perhaps its greatest challenge and departure from traditional schools.  However, quite apart from its preterist approach to eschatology, Bimillennial Preterism departs from other interpretative systems by its insistence that Revelation contemplates two millennia rather than the single millennium prevailing in other schools.  Premillennialism assumes a single, literal thousand-year period is contemplated by Rev. 20:1-6; A- and Post- millennialism assume a single, figurative thousand-year period.  Like inverted pyramids, these systems rest upon the narrow point of a single, basic assumption.  If that assumption is demonstrated to be wrong, the elaborate structures that have grown up around it must fall. If the subject text is shown to contemplate two millennia and not a single millennium, the basic premise of the other systems is false and must needs be rejected.  Let us treat briefly each of the foregoing propositions to show the verity of Bimillennialism; the verity of preterism has been given in another place.

  1) Revelation 20:1-6 contemplates two millennial periods defined a) by the binding of the Dragon and b) the reign of the saints and martyrs in paradise. 

  Perhaps the simplest argument demonstrating that the subject text contemplates two millennial periods is the grammatical structure of the passages.  In Rev. 20:2, John uses the indefinite article (“a”), saying an angel bound the Dragon “a thousand years.” However, in Rev. 20:3, John uses the definite article (“the”), saying a seal was set upon the Dragon that he should not deceive the nations until “the thousand years are fulfilled.”  The definite article in verse three is referential; it refers back to the original mention of a thousand years in verse two.  The Dragon was bound until which thousand years were fulfilled?  The thousand years previously mentioned in verse two.  However, verse four introduces a new subject, another thousand years.  This is seen by use of the indefinite article, saying, “I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus...and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years.”  Had John intended us to understand that this thousand years was the same as the thousand-year binding of the Dragon he would have used the definite article thus: “I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus…and they lived and reigned with Christ the thousand years.”  Had it been used, the definite article in verse four would have been referential, like its use in verse three, pointing back to the original thousand years introduced in verse two.  To the question, “The saints reigned until which thousand years were fulfilled?” we would again receive the answer, “The thousand years the Dragon was bound.”  However, use of the indefinite article obviates this possibility entirely; our attention is not directed back to the thousand years previously referred to, it points ahead to a new thousand years.  Hence, the Dragon was bound a thousand years and the martyrs reigned with Christ a thousand years, two separate periods, each signified by the indefinite article.  This same pattern (“a…the…a”) may be seen in numerous passages of scripture; whenever we encounter it, two subjects are identified.   

 For example, in Rev. 11:13, 19, we read, “And the same hour was there a great earthquake, and the tenth part of the city fell, and in the earthquake were slain of men seven thousand…And the temple of God was opened in heaven, and there was…an earthquake, and great hail.”  Here, two earthquakes are clearly in view, a great earthquake referred to twice in v.13, and another introduced in v. 19.  The definite article in v. 13 is referential, pointing to the great earthquake mentioned earlier in the same verse.  By shifting to the indefinite article in v. 19, however, a second earthquake is signified, the “a…the…a” structure indicating that a new subject has been introduced.  This same pattern occurs in chapters eight and nine:   “And…there fell a great star from heaven…and the name of the star was Wormwood…and I saw a star fall from heaven unto the earth…”  (Rev. 8:10, 11; 9:1) That two different stars are contemplated by the text is beyond dispute - the first denominated Wormwood, the second denominated Abaddon and Apollyon.  (Rev. 9:11) The indefinite article in v. 10 (“And there fell a star from heaven”) introduces a new subject, but the definite article in v. 11 is referential and points back to the star earlier introduced.  However, just as a new subject (a star) was introduced in Rev. 8:10 by the indefinite article, so in Rev. 9:1 a new subject, a second star, is introduced; the fact that these stars are given different names only serves to confirm this conclusion.   In both of these, and countless other examples, we see that the “a…the…a” structure is a consistent and reliable indicator that two subjects are contemplated.  The presence of this identical structure in Rev. 20:1-6 is yet another example.  Unfortunately, most commentators miss it entirely.  Failure to recognize the significance of the “a…the…a” structure has allowed the other schools to blunder into the mistake of thinking a single millennium is present in the text.  The error corrected, the edifice of Pre -, Post -, and A – millennialism collapse upon themselves like buildings without a foundation.[4]

 

  2) The millennium marking the binding of the Dragon (Rome) began with the collapse of the persecution that arose over Stephen and the ascent of Claudius to the imperial throne; it ended with the release of the Dragon by the persecution under Nero Caesar.

  Revelation describes the persecutor of God’s people as a Beast that “was, and is not, and yet is.”  (Rev. 17:8)  That the Beast “was and is not” speaks to the fact that it had ceased to persecute the saints.  However, the cessation from persecution is merely temporary; the Beast still exists (“yet is”) and “shall ascend out of the bottomless pit.”  (Rev. 17:8; cf. 11:7)  “Was, and is not, and yet is,” and “shall ascend out of the bottomless pit” therefore assume former and latter persecutions.  Two persecutions are contemplated by this language, and only two persecutions are portrayed in Revelation;[5] the millennium binding the Dragon therefore comes between and is defined by these.  The first is of the Mother church in chapter twelve.  This persecution began after the ascension of the man-child who was “caught up to God, and to his throne.”  (Rev. 12:5)  The Dragon was defeated by the blood of the lamb and the testimony of Michael and his angels (Christ and the apostles).  (Vv. 7-11)  This speaks to the earthly ministry of Christ and his triumphal cross and glorious resurrection by which he “spoiled principalities and powers, triumphing over them in it.”  (Col. 2:15)  In casting out the prince of this world (sin and death, Jno. 12:31; cf. Rom. 5:14, 17, 21) the Dragon (the world civil power consisting of the children of disobedience through whom sin and death acted and expressed themselves) was cast down and persecuted the woman (the Mother church) who brought forth the man child.  The fact this persecution follows close upon the heels of the ascension of Christ firmly fixes its time-frame, placing it at or near the beginning of the gospel.  We submit that it describes the persecution that arose over Stephen that St. Paul led or took part in.  This persecution lasted for forty-two months, or approximately A.D. 34-38.  It collapsed after receiving a triple strike to its most powerful actors: The departure of Pilate from Palestine, the removal of Caiaphas from the high priesthood, and the conversion of St. Paul, all within the space of little more than a year (e.g., A.D. 36-38).[6]   The collapse of this persecution was soon followed by the ascent of Claudius Caesar to the imperial throne.  Claudius enforced the religio licita, protecting the church from persecution at the hands of its Jewish antagonists.  The collapse of the persecution and the restraining power of Claudius answer to the binding of the Dragon in the bottomless pit.[7]  Hence, the Beast “was and is not.”  It would ascend out of the bottomless pit in the renewed persecution under Nero.  The release of the Dragon is manifested in the form of the Beast that rises from the bottomless pit.  (Rev. 11:7; 17:8; cf. 20:7)  The Beast is the alter ego of the Dragon.  The Dragon acts to persecute God's people by and through the Beast; he gives the Beast its authority and power.  (Rev. 13:1, 2)  While the Dragon is restrained, the Beast is restrained.  When the Dragon is loosed, the Beast is loosed; when the Dragon ascends from the bottomless pit the Beast ascends from the bottomless pit.  The Beast causes all that will not worship it or receive its mark to be killed.  (Rev. 13:15)  This persecution is portrayed in Rev. 13-15 and is the dominant theme of the book.  Nero is identified as the animator of this persecution by, among other things, the mystic name of the Beast[8] and the chronological statements in Rev. 17:10, which show the sixth emperor was then reigning.[9] Like the persecution that arose over Stephen, this persecution lasted forty-two months (A.D. 64-68).  (Rev. 13:5)  Upon release from the bottomless pit, the Dragon, acting through the Beast, surrounded the camp of the saints (the church) in the battle of “Gog and Magog,” otherwise known as Armageddon.  (Rev. 20:8, 9; 16:13-16)  However, this persecution ended in the complete defeat of the church’s enemies by the stroke of God in the suicide of Nero, the civil wars that enveloped the empire, and the destruction of Jerusalem and the temple, the latter of which is portrayed as the destruction of the Great Whore.  (Rev. 17, 18)

  The fatal flaw of Pre -, Post -, and A – millennialism is that they separate the two persecutions portrayed in Revelation by virtually thousands of years.  Yet the text is clear and unequivocal: When John wrote the Beast that “was and is not” was about to (mellei, Rev. 17:8) ascend out of the bottomless pit.  The whole book of Revelation is built around the theme of this imminent persecution and crisis that would envelope the church in those last days.  The events portrayed were “at hand” (Rev. 1:3; 22:10) and would “shortly to come to pass.”  (Rev. 1:1; 22:6)  The churches were admonished to “hold fast” until Christ came (Rev. 2:25; 3:11); those that persevered through the coming persecution and overcame were promised rewards.  (Rev. 2:7; 10, 11; 17; 26-28; 3:5; 12; 21)  Only the worst sort of exegesis can lift these warnings and promises from their first century context and transport them across to the centuries to our time and beyond.  Pre -, Post -, and A – millennialism introduce a total discontinuity into the text of scripture by removing the eschatological events described in Revelation and the New Testament from their immediate historical context, dissevering by thousands of years events treated together by the Lord and his apostles.  Discerning students of God’s inspired word will reject these schools entirely.

  3) The millennium describing the reign of the martyrs (the first resurrection) spoke to the victory and blessed state of the saved in paradise from and after Abel until the general resurrection when it ended.

  Those slain by the Beast are depicted as living and reigning with Christ a thousand years. (Rev. 20:4)  The thousand-year reign of the saints is described as the "first resurrection."  (Rev. 20:5)  The second death (gehenna, Rev. 20:14) has no power over participants in the first resurrection.  Hence, they are immune to the everlasting punishment and/or annihilation of hell.  John describes those who share in the first resurrection as "the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshipped the Beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands."  (Rev. 20:4)  The fact that the souls are beheaded is indicative of Roman execution and that these martyrs did not die under the Jewish persecution in Palestine that arose over Stephen.  Jewish execution was typically by stoning.  (Acts 7:59)  In other words, they are martyrs under Nero that have been gathered unto rest in paradise to await the general resurrection. Like the souls under the altar in Rev. 6:9-11, they have paid the ultimate price for their testimony and won the martyrs’ crown. Although only martyrs are portrayed, it may be fairly assumed that they are representative of all the righteous dead from and after Abel.  That the martyrs are put for the whole of the church ad requiem is consistent with the larger theme of Revelation and the time of persecution that would envelope the church.  The purpose of the passage is not to give instruction regarding the state of all the righteous dead so much as to strengthen and confirm the saints against the coming confrontation by showing God’s provision for those who would die for the faith and win the martyr’s crown.  However, that these, or any martyrs, were participants in a special resurrection unique to them and not shared by all the saints that have died in the Lord is not the teaching of the text, and would violate the analogia fidei and analogia scripturae.  Nowhere else in scripture is there the least suggestion that martyrs were raised up earlier in time than their fellow saints.  Jesus himself was a martyr of the first rank; indeed, more than just a martyr, he was The Martyr (“the faithful and true witness” Grk, martyr; Rev. 3:14), the very pattern of suffering and obedience unto death. Although he died a righteous man, the thief crucified with our Lord was not a martyr. That both Jesus and the thief were in paradise together (Lk. 23:43; cf. Acts 2:27) serves to show that a common destiny awaited all the righteous dead and there was no special resurrection for martyrs.   “Blessed are the dead that die in the Lord from henceforth: Yea, saith the Spirit, that they may rest from their labours; and their works to follow them.”  (Rev. 14:13)  All who die in the Lord are blessed, martyrs and non-martyrs alike; the saints of every age and generation all rested together in paradise pending the general resurrection.  The figure of a thousand years is used to describe the period from death until the resurrection; it spoke to the timeless quality of the hadean realm and that the abode of the saints there was temporary and not eternal, albeit wonderfully sublime. 

  More to the point, however, is the martyr's death under the Beast.  The fact that the martyrs died under the Beast that ascended from the bottomless pit (Rev. 20:4; cf. 11:7; 17:8) obviates entirely the possibility that their reign is coterminous with the Dragon's binding.  To the contrary, the whole book of Revelation was written in anticipation of the coming persecution and is based upon the assumption and assurance that the Dragon was soon to be loosed and would cause the martyrs to be slain.  The Dragon acts through the Beast; the Dragon gives the Beast its power and authority.  (Rev. 13:1, 2)  In order for the martyrs to die under the Beast, it was necessary that the Dragon first be loosed.  The martyrs must die in order to reign.  Since they do not die and cannot reign until the Dragon is loosed, their reign cannot possibly be defined by the Dragon's binding.   The millennia of the martyrs’ reign and the Dragon’s binding are further distinguished by the separate resurrections each received.  The martyrs reign because they have been faithful unto death, not because the Dragon has been bound. Their reign is anticipatory of their eternal reward in heaven; it is not defined by the Dragon’s internment, nor is the Dragon’s binding defined by the reign of the saints.  The Dragon’s internment ends when he recovers from his near mortal stroke (Rev. 13:3, 14) received in the collapse of the persecution that arose over Stephen and is permitted to renew persecution of the church (Rev. 20:7); the saints’ thousand-year reign ends only by yielding to their eternal reign with Christ in heaven at the general resurrection. (Rev. 20:12, 13)  The symbol of a thousand years is used to describe both because both are in hades, the Dragon symbolically, the saints and martyrs actually.    

Conclusion

  The brief outline above, describing the reign of the martyrs and the binding and loosing of the Dragon and its persecution of the church, should be sufficient to dispel entirely the notion that they describe the same period or events.  The only thing common to them both is the figure of a thousand years.  Other than this, there is a total disunity of subject matter.  There are separate passages that describe separate characters, under separate judgments, who experience separate destinies at separate times.  With so many things separate, how can they possibly describe the same period or events?  A prima facie case has been made for the existence of two millennia; the burden of proof now shifts to Pre-, Post-, and A-, millennialism to demonstrate that a single millennium is contemplated by the text.  Until now, this supposition has never been tested.  We believe that, once weighed in the balance, they will be found wanting.  Bimillennial Preterism denies every major tenant of Pre-, Post-, and A- millennialism. Although Preterism alone is sufficient to overthrow these competing systems, Bimillennialism attacks upon a separate front.  The other systems, based as they are upon the false assumption a single millennium, fall under their own weight upon proof that there is no connection between the reign of the saints and the binding of the Dragon other than their proximity to one another and the similarity of symbols in their several passages.  Pre-, Post-, and A- millennialism have feet of clay; as systems of Biblical interpretation they are broken to pieces together by the fact that two millennia are posited by Revelation, not one.  Like the chaff of the summer threshing-floors, the wind has carried them away, and there is no place found for them.

Chart of Bimillennialism

[1]  Lactantius, Divine Institutes, XXIV; Ante-Nicene Fathers, Vol. VII, p. 219. 

[2]  For a full refutation of Premillennialism, see Foy E. Wallace Jr, God’s Prophetic Word (Oklahoma City, Foy E. Wallace Jr. Publications (1946, revised ed. 1960), pp. 359-364.

[3]  Postmillennialism emphasizes the duty of the church to impact the socio-political and economic lines of society so as to bring them into conformity to Christ.  However, Amillennialists are largely a-political and simply look to the next life, feeling no duty to preach or work to conform men's institutions to Christ or the gospel while they are here.  Any change the church or gospel may have upon culture or government is purely incidental and no part of the Great Commission’s charge to teach all nations whatsoever things Christ has commanded.  (See generally, R.C. Sproul, The Last Days According To Jesus (Grand Rapids, Baker Books, 1998), pp, 201; David Chilton, Days of Vengeance (Tyler TX, Dominion Press, 1987), pp. 493-498.

[4]  The only argument against this grammatical structure is the use of the definite article in v. 7: (“And when the thousand years are expired, Satan shall be loosed out of his prison.”)  However, the definite article here refers to the thousand years of Satan’s binding, not the thousand years of the saints’ reign; it does not establish that they are identical or synchronous.  The literary arrangement of the chapter, interposing the reign of the saints and confessors between vv. 3 and 7, must not confuse us or prevent us from correctly identifying its several parts and themes.  As demonstrated by the arguments in the following sections, the fact of two millennia is equally demonstrated by other proofs.

 [5]  Some see a third war or persecution in Rev. 20:7-9, but this is mistaken.  The persecution in Rev. 20:7-9 is the same persecution variously portrayed as that referred to in Rev. 11:7; 13:1-18; 17:8 and averred to in the letters to the churches.

 [6]  Josephus, Antiquities of the Jews, XVIII, iv, 2, 3.  Pilate departed Palestine by order of Vitellius, president of Syria, to answer charges in Rome before Tiberius in connection with the death of some Samaritans slain in an uprising. Ibid.  For a detailed table of chronological events, see Appendix A.

[7]  The bottomless pit is another term for tartarus; the place of the wicked dead pending the resurrection unto damnation and their punishment and/or annihilation in gehenna, also called the lake of fire or second death.  (Rev. 20:14)  Casting down to the bottomless pit is not unique to the Dragon (Rome) or Rev. 20:1-3.  The same figure is encountered numerous times in the Old Testament prophets.   According to the usus loquendi of the prophets, casting down to the bottomless pit is a figure of personal or national defeat and debasement so complete as to all but equal death.  Hence, Ezekiel describes the fall of Tyre thus:  “They shall bring thee down to the pit, and thou shalt die the deaths of them that are slain in the midst of the seas.”  (Ezek. 28:8)  Concerning Assyria Ezekiel said:  "I made the nations to shake at the sound of his fall, when I cast him down to hell with them that descend into the pit..."  (Ezek. 31:16)  Other nations described by Ezekiel as being cast down to the pit also include Egypt, Elam, Meshec, Tubal, Edom, and Zidon.  (Ezek. 32:18, 22, 24, 26, 29, 30; cf. Isa. 14:9-23; 30:27-33)  The casting down of the Dragon (Rome) and binding it in the pit would last for a period qualitatively described as a "thousand years," after which it would be loosed for a "little season" to resume its role as the adversary of Christ's church.  (Rev. 20:7)  

[8]  Reduced to its numeric value, Neron Kesar, the Hebrew spelling of Nero Caesar, equals six hundred threescore and six.  

[9]  These are: Julius, Augustus (Octavius), Tiberius, Caligula (Caius), Claudius, and Nero.

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Date:
17 Apr 2003
Time:
17:46:26

Comments

Great work, Kurt!


Date:
17 Apr 2003
Time:
19:40:53

Comments

Silly. Ranks up there with 1) Ed's non-recorded literal first century rapture theory, and 2) the dispy notion that in Matthew 24, Jesus is talking about two different comings separated by thousands of years. A new doctrine built upon "a" and "the". Are we really growing that tired of time-tested arguments in favor of these whims?


Date:
18 Apr 2003
Time:
08:27:13

Comments

Is it April 1st? This is a joke I hope...


Date:
18 Apr 2003
Time:
12:20:33

Comments

While it is certainly true that all forms of futurism "are a house of cards" , thus totally failed systems. Your entire premise expounded above rests (whether you relize it or not) on your assumption that "the dragon" was the Roman Empire (which deceived the nations) and your assumption that "the abyss" is tartarus. As both of these assumptions are demonstrably false you should "go back to the drawing board" and seek to get it right.


Date:
19 Apr 2003
Time:
05:26:44

Comments

Some interesting thoughts. I appreciate fresh insights into this difficult section of scripture.By there very nature, it is at times very difficult to be dogmatic about what the symbols correspond to but many of us feel that at least the time frame must be viewed as related to the early recipients of this letter. Whether partially or completely on the money,thanks for a new attempt at solving the puzzle.


Date:
19 Apr 2003
Time:
14:12:18

Comments

You said it.. the accomplishment here is not "waiting to be determined" if it is 100% correct. The freshness presented in this article (and in a forthcoming book) *should* shock a few proud Prets (and others) back into the reality of how truly difficult this area of study has been for the last 2,000 years. Frankly, if we don't start at consideration of the Greek, then we might as well consider ourselves rubes on the subject. Todd


Date:
19 Apr 2003
Time:
18:21:39

Comments

The last time someone played with "a" and "the", John 1 was the passage -- and the JW's were born. I agree that Greek expertise would be a benefit to future studies, but not the kind of weak-Greek I've seen above. Kenneth Copeland "uses" Greek too, but cannot read it and has no clue about the things in which he makes confident original-language assertions.


Date:
19 Apr 2003
Time:
18:50:37

Comments

J.S. Russell had it right. There have been many attempts to discredit him on this one part of scripture while still calling him one of the Fathers of Preterism. When large numbers are used in scripture (i.e. thousand, 144,000, etc.) they are always used figuratively for larger numbers. Does anyone suppose God owns the cattle on 1000 hills and not 1001. Does anyone think the 144,000 was literal? No more and no less? When J.S. Russell got it right we should have left it alone and turned our energies to another section of scripture. Rick


Date:
20 Apr 2003
Time:
22:28:06

Comments

^^^^ofcourse Russel stuart is not GOd, so he is open to criticism.


Date:
20 Apr 2003
Time:
22:28:16

Comments

^^^^ofcourse Russel stuart is not GOd, so he is open to criticism.


Date:
21 Apr 2003
Time:
20:41:00

Comments

I also find J.S. Russell's view on the millennium to make the most sense. For a summary of it see McKenzie's article entitled "Premillennial Preterism" in the partial preterist section. Mark


Date:
22 Apr 2003
Time:
18:09:50

Comments

Without commenting on the rest of the theory, a word should be said about Greek articles. Firstly, you say "John uses the indefinite article" - however, in Greek, there is no "indefinite article". There is only a definite article (equivalent to English "the"), and the lack of an article is interpreted as being "indefinite". This is a minor nitpick, but if you are writing a book, you should be sure to get this right. The more important thing that you need to address is that Rev.20:4 has the greek article (ie. is definite) in the Majority Text (2001 Robinson/Pierpont). So does Textus Receptus (many people still read Bibles based on Textus Receptus, like KJV and NKJV, so you will at least have to explain to them why their version is "wrong"). You are clearly working from a modern Critical Text, where some scholars have decided that the article should be thrown out (probably because, by their criteria, it is "harder" to explain the variant). But if you decide to continue with this theory, you need to be able to justify why that (definite) article, which exists in the majority of Greek manuscript evidence, should be thrown out. Frankly, I would not place too much trust in a theory that relies in any way on a Greek text variant to support it.


Date:
23 Apr 2003
Time:
06:02:43

Comments

No one is saying J.S. Russell was God. But when you've got it right, you've got it right. He may not be right on everything concerning preterism (although I think he's closer than anyone else I've seen), but I think he's right on this point. \ Mark, you're right Duncan McKenzie has some great papers on this topic and he's should be coming out with his book in a few months. Rick


Date:
23 Apr 2003
Time:
11:10:39

Comments

I appreciate this comment as it is well reasoned and offers something tangible. It is true that the Greek has no "indefinite article" ("a") the absence of the definite article ("the") being translated "a" in English. In the book we deal with this, but pass it over in the article. I place no stock in the "Majority Text" as there is not a single translation that has ever been made based upon it, it being only a theory propounded by a very small handful of men. It is true that some versions of the Textus Receptus has the definite article in this place. The translators of the KJV departed from the Textus Receptus when, in their judgment, the evidence required. Rev. 20:4 presumably is one of those places inasmuch as they do not use the definite article in their translation. (The version of the Textus Receptus available in most interlinears does not reflect the departures made by the translators of the KJV.) As may been seen by resort to the apparatus criticus appended to the interlinears, there is considerable textual variation in v. 4 touching the definite versus indefinite article. The trend of scholarship is clearly toward the absence of the definite article. (Lachmann, Tishchendorf, Tregelles, Alford, Wordsworth would omit it.) Strange to relate, virtually every translation uses the indefinite article in this place, including the KJV. I am not aware of any translation that uses the definite article in this place (which is not to say there isn't one, only I have never seen it). I think the fact that no translation uses the definite article in v. 4 speaks volumes. For my part, it means I am in the "majority" position when I reason from the translation occurring in virtually every major version of the Bible. With you, I would not (and do not) build a whole theory relying solely upon this sort of evidence. I only say that it is the easiest means of demonstrating two millennial are contemplated by the text. There are many other considerations that confirm this result. The presence/absence of the definite/indefinite article merely gets us there by a more direct route, without having to provide explanations of the symbols. However, quite apart from the Greek article, I think the symbols show two millennial are contemplated by the text. Thanks for your comments - I appreciate your thoughts. Kurt


Date:
23 Apr 2003
Time:
16:47:47

Comments

When you use phrases like "virtually every translation uses", "I am in the "majority" position", and "very small handful of men", it sounds like you place some weight on quantitative evidence. I agree that quantitative evidence is important. Please consider the following: When you are using the evidence of a Greek article to support your theory, it does not matter what any given translator renders into English. The English translation is only relevant when trying to convince someone who is trusting the English and doesn't care to check the original Greek. What matters is the choice of Greek text underlying the translation. The modern Critical Text does not contain the article, therefore it's not surprising that modern English translations do not include it. You say that the Majority Text is based on the theory of "very small handful of men". Actually the modern Critical Text (which leaves out the article) has been created by a very small handful of text-critics, who think they can "second-guess" the majority of manuscript evidence. If you are basing your Greek text on Textus Receptus, and just "head-counting" the men involved, then you don't even have a handful -- you have Erasmus (but actually TR is probably closer to the original than the Critical Text :-) ). The "theory" behind the Majority Text is that you should give priority to the numerical weight of manuscript evidence: The majority of manuscripts have the article in Rev 20:4. If you, as the chooser of the Greek that underlies the translation, leave out the article, you are basing your text choice on a "small handful of manuscripts." I'm not saying that you can't do this, you certainly can. But please be honest with your readers that this is what you are doing (ie. siding with the minority of manuscript evidence). Again, I'm not saying anything about your theory as such, only your use of this sort of evidence to try to support it. Honesty requires that we recognize both the strengths and weaknesses of our interpretations. In this case, the manuscript evidence is a weakness for your theory, and not a strength. You might have done this in your book, but it is certainly not clear from your article.


Date:
23 Apr 2003
Time:
17:24:42

Comments

By the way, if you are looking for an English translation that is pretty reliable to the original Greek, Young's Literal Translation (public domain) is quite good. It does translate Rev.20:4 with the article as follows: "...and they did live and reign with Christ the thousand years."


Date:
23 Apr 2003
Time:
18:47:05

Comments

If I may jump in and join this discussion...The problem with the “Majority Text” is that, like Wescott’s and Hort’s “New Greek Text,” it purports to rediscover or recreate the “true text” of the original autographs at a time very remote from the birth of the church. The basic premise of Wescott and Hort was that the “true text” was lost early into the history of the church and they found it 1800 years later. To accept this theory, one has to be prepared to believe that God let his word disappear for most of the history of the church and that for 1800 odd years we have been without a reliable text. The so-called Majority Text makes the like claim based upon a simple head count of the variant readings (not manuscripts). Textual Criticism is a lot more than just counting heads. We must consult manuscripts, versions, and church fathers. A version or patristic writer from A.D.150 cannot be dismissed merely because it is not a “manuscript” (Greek, hand copied text). Testimony of a particular reading from a church father dating A.D. 250 is of more weight than a Greek manuscript dating from A.D.1300. The theory behind the Majority Text is overly simplistic. It also is based upon the premise that God let the “true text” disappear until 1970 or so when the advocates of this new theory rediscovered it! I, for one, am not prepared to believe God let his word disappear and that it has now wondrously been uncovered by the proponents of this new theory. I believe that God's providence guarded the text and that the Textus Receptus – the dominate text for the last 500 years – is his providentially preserved and approved text. It went through over 20 editions by numerous editors and textual critics over a period of 100 years. Unlike the textual critics of today, the editors of the TR were men of faith. The translators of the KJV used the TR. The translators of the KJV(and every other English version) apparently did not feel the definite article was in the original autographs. Simmons seems to be on good ground and in good company. If you are going to disparage his interpretation, it should be done on the basis of exegesis, not textual criticism you are not qualified to argue.


Date:
23 Apr 2003
Time:
22:30:44

Comments

Just wanted to share that you are all to be appreciated for making an effort to honorably discuss this topic. Very helpful!


Date:
24 Apr 2003
Time:
02:53:23

Comments

(response to comment: 23 Apr 2003 18:47:05) I am not debating theories of text criticism. I'm not going to argue the merits or demerits of whichever version of "Textus Receptus" you think is the most "authoritative." By your criterion, it sounds like the authoritative Greek text was "lost" and rediscovered in the Textus Receptus in 1516 (or 1522 or 1527 or 1535 or ??? depending on which of the 20 editions you think is authoritative). The 1550 Stephen's edition of Textus Receptus contains the article in Rev.20:4. I've seen another version of the TR that leaves out the entire phrase at the end of that verse. I will assert that at _best_, you have mixed textual support for the Greek article in Rev.20:4. And the modern text critics that you say are not "men of faith" have decided to exclude the article from Rev.20:4. So this part of the Bimillenial argument is moot for purposes of establishing it's credibility. I have said nothing about the credibility of the rest of the argument. But it would be dishonest to make it seem like there is no question of the presence or absence of the article in the original Greek text. The article above does not even mention that there is "mixed" textual evidence. This is essentially presenting less than the whole truth. I hope that in their book, the authors do justice to the truth, no matter if it is "messy" or uncertain. They could do this one of two ways: 1. They could leave out their argument about the article in Rev.20:4. 2. Or they could retain their point about "a-the-a" and also discuss the fact that there are text variants, and the reasons why they believe that the many manuscripts which contain the article should be dismissed. Either one of these solutions would do justice to the truth. The authors might have another solution, but I think I have asserted my point, and backed it up sufficiently, no matter what you think my "qualifications" are. You say that the translators of the KJV did not "feel the article was in the original autographs." If you are suggesting that the KJV translaters were guided by the Holy Spirit, and therefore the text-critical decisions that they made (based on the multiple versions of TR they had available) should be considered "authoritative" and unquestioned 400 years later by us who are not "qualified" to do so, then we have nothing to discuss, because you are presupposing something that I (and many others) do not.


Date:
24 Apr 2003
Time:
06:00:57

Comments

The writer's point is well made that the above article does not mention the textual variation regarding the presence/absence of the definite article in Rev. 20:4. For the record, the article above is attached as an appendix to the book. The book notes the variation. However, questions regarding the quantity and quality of the manuscript authority are not discussed other than to note that the trend of scholarship is to omit the definite article in this place and that all English translations, including the KJV, do likewise. Because the article is attached as an appendix to the book, it does not discuss the point a second time and omits other material covered in the comments on Chapter 20 bearing upon the two millennia approach. However, your comments on both sides of the textual question are interesting and are appreciated - Kurt.


Date:
25 Apr 2003
Time:
07:35:08

Comments

Premillennialism and Postmillennial say that the dragon will be loosed at some point in the future, immediately prior to the second coming and resurrection. Preterists reject that hypothesis and hold that the resurrection has already occurred. Since the dragon is loosed before the resurrection, and since as Preterists we hold the resurrection occurred in A.D. 70, the dragon must have been loosed before A.D. 70. The question thus becomes, when was the dragon loosed? Placing the loosing of the dragon at the persecution under Nero fits the historical framework of Preterism and the Bible. If loosed in Nero, it must have been bound at some earlier point in time. Simmons’ suggestion that the time of calm under Claudius was the binding is quite plausible; it fits the time-frame and is consistent with the historical information we possess. I think his exegesis is tight and sound.


Date:
27 Apr 2003
Time:
17:31:38

Comments

I appreciate Mr. Simmons' strivings for the true interpretative foundation--allowing scripture to interpet scripture--in the midst of the age-old contrivance wherein doctrine that is to be received by the multitude and is considered "sound," must first pass through the politically orientated hands of the assumed authoritative modern-Pharisee. Nevertheless, I find the bimillenium explanation lacking (as I shall explain below). I've found that as one disciples himself to study the Bible, he will find that the gap between that which the Bible says, and that which the common theologian teaches, are non-conciliatory. Mr. Simmon's explanation does not fall into the mentioned theologian's lot. The bimillenial veiw as presented, in its most fundamental points, does no damage to the doctrine of the prophets and Apostles (who declared-established the Kingdom of God through the Spirit of the only Savior, Jesus Christ, King of that Kingdom). I was impressed with Mr. Simmon's article in that it demonstrates that if Revelation was given to St. John prior to 70 AD, the Book was immediately applicable to the preservation of the infant church-world. Furthermore the article confirms that the commonly accepted views of milleniumism belittle the "King of kings and Lord of lords" by denying the ministration of Christ, either in part or full. Nevertheless, bimillenial preterism appears to present its own interpretative problem that passes unaddressed: Why do the events of today so closely mirror the types found in the Book of Revelation? and, If all is already fulfilled, why bother seeking for answers regarding our day in that Book, or for that matter, anywhere in the Bible? Those who do and will fight the preterist view have not yet brought forth their full arsenal since most of them have not yet been driven to think. Most of them are more willing to preserve an image of God than to search the scriptures for direct revelation as given by the Author. They don't feel challenged yet; although they lack knowledge, they won't lack the mouth or the pen to dispense their objections. Nevertheless, Jesus Christ, the same yesterday, today and forever. I submit (as from my understanding) that the Revelation of Jesus Christ reveals a pattern of fulfilment showing God's unalterable judgment upon an apostate nation and His blessing to His faithful remnant. Yet death is not yet put under His feet, and the battle between good and evil persists. If Jesus is the Faithful Witness, then to understand the fulfilment of scripture as a prototype (the preterist view), necessitates an antetype (God's impending judgement on the consolidated world as fomenting wrath to this day). Although this full preterist view is excellent, it appears lacking in that it is impracticable to the present age as presented. Today the world is looking for a savior for mortal man's earthy kingdom. The prototype is seen in the Pharicees of the New Testiment who also looked for a savior for their earthly kingdom. My concern is that preterism, if unchecked by present antetypes, may negate the authority of judgment by resigning it to past history in the minds of her adherents.


Date:
01 May 2003
Time:
18:28:10

Comments

The Greek Text used by the translators of the Authorized (King James) Version does not have the article in Rev. 20:4. The primary text used was Beza's 1598 edition of the Textus Receptus. However, the translators departed from the text when, in their judgment, the original autograph required. The Greek underlying the Authorized Version was traced and edited by F.H.A. Scrivener, M.A., D.C.L., LL.D., and was published by Cambridge University Press in 1894 and 1902. Copies are available from the Trinitarian Bible Society.


Date:
30 Nov 2003
Time:
13:36:45

Comments

Life and Death are in the Lord's hands, always was the case. Jesus, being exalted by the Father to His own right hand, has the keys the death and hades; this He made plain at the outset of the Revelation. Jesus said to those of His day "he who lives and believes in me shall never die" so what death did He mean to accomplish this? Jesus claims in this statement that He already was the ruler over death before His own death and resurrection; as Peter said in Acts "it was IMPOSSIBLE for death to hold Him". All things, and Death too, are under His feet now.


Date:
10 Jan 2004
Time:
07:30:04

Comments

Rev 20:2 - And he laid hold on the dragon, that old serpent, which is the Devil, and Satan, and bound him "[A] Thousand Years", ==== Rev 20:3 - And cast him into the bottomless pit, and shut him up, and set a seal upon him, that he should deceive the nations no more, till "THE Thousand Years" should be fulfilled: and after that he must be loosed a little season. ==== Rev 20:4 - And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them: and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus …. and they lived and reigned with Christ "[A] Thousand Years". ==== Rev 20:5 - But the rest of the dead lived not again until "THE Thousand Years" were finished. This is the first resurrection. ==== Rev 20:6 - Blessed and holy is he that hath part in the first resurrection: on such the second death hath no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with him "[A] Thousand Years". ==== Rev 20:7 - And when "THE Thousand Years" are expired, Satan shall be loosed out of his prison, ==== ==== ==== 1) Using the indefinite article ("a") and definite article ("the") to justify a case for two millennial periods is a weak argument, especially when Greek has no "indefinite article". Anyway, if John uses the indefinite article ("a") to designate the beginning of Millennium periods, as in Rev. 20:2 (the 1st Millennium) and in Rev 20:4 (the 2nd Millennium), then what about Rev 20:6? Perhaps when the dead lived again after THE thousand years (your 2nd Millennium) were finished, the saints "shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with him "[A] Thousand Years" - for the Third Millennium? ======== 2) Using your line of argument, then the "THE Thousand Years" of verse 7 should follow that of "A Thousand Years" of verse 6. But that is not the case. While you have 'admitted' that 'the only argument against this grammatical structure is the use of the definite article in v. 7', you nevertheless take this as an exception (and argue that the definite article refers to the thousand years of Satan's binding, not the thousand years of the saints' reign). ======== 3) OK, so at the end of Satan's binding (verse 7), he went out and deceive the nations (verse 8), and was thrown into the Lake of Fire (verse 10). This is followed by verse 11 - the Great White Throne Judgment, where the dead, small and great come alive and stand before God to be judged (verse 12). But wait a minute - they were supposed to come alive after the First Millennium not after the Second! ======== My view is simply. One can see the pairing of "a-the" in verses 2 and 3, verses 4 and 5, verses 6 and 7. Each of the "a" is used like a numerical value to indicate the length of the same period in discussion - "bound him a thousand years", "reigned with Christ a thousand years", "shall reign with him a thousand years". Each of the "the" is referred the ending of the said period - "till the thousand years should be fulfilled", "until the thousand years were finished", "when the thousand years are expired". There is only one Millennium period - when Christ rules, there is no place for Satan. (Remember the temptation of Satan in trying to offer co-rulership with Christ? No way!) ==== MS Cheo.


Date:
20 May 2004
Time:
13:49:09

Comments

"The best scholars, and among them Bengel, Wesley, and Dr. Owen, assert that there are two distinct periods of a thousand years spoken of in verses 1-7. The Greek article sustains this view. The first period extends through the repression of Satan which, Bengel says, indicates the great prosperity of the Church. The second is the reign of martyrs." ======== For more details on why these scholars have asserted these two independent periods of time go here: www.gospeltruth.net/Antinomianism/antinom_chap14.htm ======== JackM


Date: 12 May 2010
Time: 07:37:46

Your Comments:

Does anyone on this website realize that the JW's founder actually BOUGHT a house in San Diego, California for Abraham, Issac and Jacob to live when they were resurrected? J RUTHERFORD taught in "Millions Now Living Shall Never Die" that they would be resurrected in 1925. They called it BETH SARIM. They even took a picture of it and published it in one of their books. It was even Deeded to them (Abraham,Issac and Jacob) filed and recorded in DEED BOOK 1741. A copy of which can be found here <http://www.escapefromwatchtower.com/deed.html> Eventually they quietly disposed of it.

 

 

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