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The Little Horn, the Beast, Gog and Anti-Christ

Monday, December 10th, 2007

[…] Yes, the ‘prince that shall come’ is indeed the ‘little horn’ that comes out of the fourth beast of Dan 7. But the same ‘litte horn’ (and I must insist that he is indeed the same on solid exegetical evidence) comes “no less” out of a division of the third kingdom (see 8:9). So I think it is a mistake to overly emphasize the ‘territorial’ aspects of the successive beast kingdoms, but to see rather the more generic, ‘organic’ nature of their relation. Notice that the kingdoms are not represented as ceasing to exist, but each lives on in its successor, so that at the end, all are destroyed at once as all existing at once. That’s what the language of the passages seem to represent. The kingdoms are viewed as unit, the beast-like kingdom of man. They are distinguished and identified according to their impingement on fate and fortunes of Israel as usurpers of the theocratic kingdom of David (Dan 2:44). I see them in a more ‘organic’ relation to the doctrine of the principalities and powers in chapter ten, the real ‘powers’ behind the kingdoms of this present evil age, and their defeat as the real issue of Israel’s restoration. But even on territorial grounds, Rome certainly included most of the eastern Arab lands that could produce a figure that could marshal the Islamic world against Israel. So I see Titus and the 70AD destruction of the temple and city as only a pre-typical fulfillment of a yet future destruction of city and sanctuary by the actual contemporary people of the Antichrist. […]

When was the book of Revelation written?

Wednesday, November 28th, 2007

[…] 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 hodge podge 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. […]

Where is the tribe of Dan in Rev. 7?

Sunday, October 7th, 2007

[…] Could it be that this is a clue that the sealed remnant represents a heavenly spiritual corporate entity/ or company that anticipates, as first-fruits, not only the literal gathering of Israel at Christ’s return, but the perfection in love of an overcoming church that “loves not its life unto death according to Rev 12? That is, this is the first fruits of covenant fulfillment, not only of millennial Israel, but also, and even more particularly, this is the eschatological forerunners of the glorious church of Christ as it is about to be perfected through the sufferings of the final test (Rev 3:10). These are free from sensual entanglements, as Samson the Danite was not, and these are free from idolatry, as the tribe that was particularly prone to idolatry was not, and these are vigilant and set for the defense of the gospel, not as Dan that was slack and negligent concerning its duty to participate in the defense of their brethren. They were not their brother’s keeper. But these, in complete contrast of the compromised tribe of Dan, are perfect in their love and faithful unto death. Though hunted, persecuted, even killed, paradoxically, not a hair of their head will perish. They are sealed; already ascended far above the access of principalities and powers, because their faith has found an unshakable resting place. I take this in complete keeping with the eschatological birthing of the man-child (Rev 12), a key to which is Paul’s remark concerning the relationship of travail to the “formation of Christ” in his wavering believers. See what I mean? These are those in whom Christ has been formed to such a degree as to manifest Him in the flesh through their faith and love unto death. […]