Can you tell me why I should accept a late date (96AD) for the writing of Revelation, without quoting Irenaeus?
I’ve never studied the matter closely, probably because I can’t see where it would make a lot of difference. Sure, it’s a ‘make or break’ for preterism. They absolutely MUST defend the early date with all their might, and you know the power of a subjective interest. But that is only because they are content with a hodgepodge of inconsistent exegesis. For example, if we make Nero the Beast, then how can we NOT make him Paul’s man of sin, which is obviously Daniel’s ‘willful king’ (11:36) ‘little horn’ (7:21) and beast (7:11)? Since this figure is clearly destroyed at no time short of Christ’s return (whether mystically or literally conceived), then you have a real problem, because Nero meets his ‘apocalyptic’ demise quite some time before Jerusalem is destroyed by Titus, (the other so-called return of Christ in ‘mystical’ apocalyptic judgment) some years later.
So what’s wrong with this picture? Exegetically everything! The Beast is slain and the millennium of the martyred souls is believed to begin with the death of the Nero, the Beast, some years before the siege and fall of Jerusalem. It’s silly. In the real world of biblical exegesis, the brief tenure of the Beast’s career coincides with the final desolations of Jerusalem as perfectly concurrent . So, early dating John’s Apocalypse assists nothing for the preterist’s cause. I have no problem with an earlier date, because I have no problem that the book might have had a very beneficial early circulation, bracing both Roman Christians in the north of the empire and Jewish Christians in the south for two very horrific but distinct periods of tribulation, both having much of the essence of the final tribulation that closes this age with the “actual’ return of Christ.