Historical Support for the Preterist View of the Apocalypse?


#1

I subscribe to the preterist view of the Apocalypse - that what was revealed in John’s vision was substantially fulfilled in the first century. Among many other reported signs of fulfillment, we know from Tacitus and/or Josephus that some soldiers reported seeing several unusual signs, including a chariot coming in the clouds, when Jerusalem fell to the Romans in 70 A.D. We also know that Jerusalem was destroyed by fire, and Rome was not destroyed by fire, strongly supporting the conclusion that the “harlot” city is Jerusalem, not Rome.

The destruction of Jerusalem, together with the historical account of a chariot coming in the clouds over the city at the moment of Jerusalem’s fall, appear to closely coincide with Jesus’ Olivet Discourse as reported in Matthew, Mark and Luke, as well as John’s Apocalypse.

Note: I also believe - consistent with Catholic dogma - that Jesus **will ** come again, and there will be a final judgment.

Is there a way to interpret the sign of the chariot “coming in the clouds” at the moment of Jerusalem’s fall, as reported by the historians, as being consistent with the Catholic view that the *parousia * is yet to come?


#2

Hmmm…interesting question. So are you asking “Does this interpretation of Revelation in some way contradict the doctrine of parousia?” If that is what you’re asking I would say no. Just because Revelation tells us about past events doesn’t mean that this doctrine is not revealed to us elsewhere in divine revelation. For example, Paul’s epistles contain such information such as 1 Thess 4:17 “After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever.” (Of course not to be confused with the idea of rapture.) Also Mark 13: 26-27: “And then they will see ‘the Son of Man coming in the clouds’ with great power and glory, and then he will send out the angels and gather (his) elect from the four winds, from the end of the earth to the end of the sky.”

Also, I’m sure there is support from this doctrine in Sacred Tradition, though I’m not cool enough to be able to cite any specific examples. I would assert that the early Christians believed that Jesus would come again because of the (what I have heard is) Aramaic prayer “Maranatha!” (Don’t know if that is correct spelling). “Come, Lord Jesus”


#3

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