Research insights into the Date of Revelation, Part IV

Textual redaction considerations:

• The “Syriac version” of the New Testament, which dates back to the second century A.D., states that Revelation was written during the reign of Nero making a date of 64-68 A.D.

• The “Muratorian Fragment,” dating back to 170-190 A.D., states that this work of John was written during the reign of Nero.

• The “Aramaic Peshitta” version has a remark that places its date prior to 70 A.D. The title page of Revelation states this work of John was written right after the reign of Nero.

• The “Monarchian Prologues,” that dates back to 250-350 A.D., claims that Paul also wrote to these seven churches (possibly Romans which was a “circular letter,” it went out to many addressees) following John’s Book, thus, placing the book even before some of the other Pauline epistles.

•A quote, arguably attributed to Papius (130 AD), states that John the Apostle was martyred before the destruction of Jerusalem in A.D. 70.

Roman law of exile:

Nero Caesar exiled John on the island of Patmos. Nero died in 68 AD, and according to Roman law, those banned by a prior Caesar would be released by the succeeding Caesar. Thus, John would have been released from Patmos around 68 AD. (John himself mentions he was at Patmos when he received the Revelation).
The condition of the Church in Asia Minor:

John is clearly writing to the seven churches and consequently to people being persecuted by Rome. Rome was a bloodthirsty, pagan empire that oppressed its people, especially Christians, who were considered criminals and slaves and used for sadistic entertainment.

Peter also wrote to the Christians in Asia Minor around the same time for an early date or a few years before John (1Pet. 1:1-6; 4:12; 5:9). He notes that they were in extreme persecution, suffering, and in dire anguish. This is similar to John’s language and situation (Re 2:9; 3:9) and similar situations recorded by Paul in Acts 13:50; 14:5,19; 17:5-8,13; 18:12. Thus, the severity of the persecution is consistent with an early date.

Keep in mind that a Preterist view would require that the date for Revelation be prior to 70 A.D.

7 thoughts on “Research insights into the Date of Revelation, Part IV

  1. oh, it awaits “moderation”. I won’t hold my breath that you show the integrity of publishing it and disabusing your readers of your erroneous statements, but maybe a man who thinks he is not prone to error and can read people’s hearts and minds might have some integrity. We’ll see.

  2. The Aramaic Peshitta and the Syriac refer to the same version, from the fourth century at the earliest. Few place the Peshitta in the second century, but in any case, the earliest evidence for the statement concerning Nero is centuries later.

    The Muratorian Canon doesn’t mention Nero.

    The Muratorian Canon, not the Monarchian Prologues, state that Paul followed the example of John.

    It’s Papias, not Papius.

    Papias doesn’t say “when” John was martyred.

    There are other mistakes in other parts of this study also.

  3. You might want to revise the regnal dates for Nero’s reign as written in your first paragraph. That would be from AD 54 – AD 68, wouldn’t it? Not AD 64 – 68. Just a typo I presume.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s