PMW 2018-042 by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.
As John writes the Book of Revelation, Israel has been a part of the Roman regime for almost a century. As such she enjoyed special leagues of “friendship and mutual alliance” which began with Julius Caesar (Jos. Ant. 14:10:1 §185). Her love for Caesar was so great that after he was murdered, Jews wept for many nights at the site of his cremation (Suetonius, Jul. 84:5). Josephus, a priestly member of the Jewish aristocracy, praises Julius and records many of the treaties with the Jews which were established by Caesar and later Roman authorities (Ant. 14:10:2-25 §190-267). He then declares: “there are many such decrees of the senate and imperators of the Romans and those different from these before us” (Ant. 14:10:26).
Israel engages these alignments despite her OT prophets condemning unholy alliances as harlotry (e.g., Hos 7:11). As we read in Rev 13, the exercise of the Land beast’s authority is “in his [the Roman emperor’s] presence” (13:1a). Later in Rev 17 we see Israel’s alliance symbolized by a harlot engaged in a drunken sexual orgy with the sea beast. Continue reading
PMT 2015-124 by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.
Here in Rev the temple speaks as an image of the emperor-god. When the Pharisees rebuke Christ for not stopping those who praise him at the triumphal entry, “He answered and said, ‘I tell you, if these become silent, the stones will cry out!’” (Lk 19:40). This probably signifies that the stones of the temple will declare him when not one is left on another in AD 70 (cp. Lk 21:5-6) (See: R. C. H. Lenski, Luke, 966; E. E. Ellis, Luke [NCBC], 226). Prosopopoiia clearly appears as a major feature in the later chapters in Rev where two cities are presented as women, one an evil harlot, the other a righteous bride (Rev 17; 21). Continue reading
PMT 2015-121 by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.
I appreciate the questions readers send to me. I regret that I am not able to answer them quickly, due to my schedule. However, here is one that is a favorite among dispensationalists. And it is an intriguing one.
You argue that John must be measuring an actual, historical temple in Rev 11:1-2. Yet Ezekiel measures a temple, even though it does not exist in history. This suggests that the temple does not need to exist for John to measure it. How do you explain this problem for your view?
Thanks for your perceptive question. Please consider the following response. Continue reading