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Historical Context
for the Holy Bible
Let’s start at the end: Revelation
The Book of the Revelation of Jesus Christ
Authorship: the Apostle John
Revelation 1:4
John,
To the seven churches in the province of Asia:
26Feb2017: I presented a lesson on the 7 churches in my Doctrine Series.
Which were:
1. Ephesus, founded by Paul (Acts 19) on 1st missionary journey
2. Smyrna, believed to have been founded by Paul
3. Pergamum, unknown, but Catholic history suggests Paul had great influence
4. Thyatira, founded by Paul (Acts 16), near Philippi, it is Lydia’s home
5. Sardis, believed to have been the first church founded by John
6. Philadelphia, unknown, perhaps John
7. Laodicea, not founded by Paul, but nurtured by Paul (Colossians mentions)
The Isle of Patmos and the 7 Churches
When was Revelation written?
There is only one small window of time in which there
were only 7 churches in Asia. The early AD 60's.
The apostle Paul founded, established and/or nurtured 9
churches in that area, but only 7 were addressed in
Revelation. The reason for this is that the cities of Colosse,
Hierapolis, and Laodicea, were all destroyed by an
earthquake around AD 61. Laodicea was rebuilt soon
afterwards, but the other 2 cities were not. This left only 7
churches in Asia during the 5 years just prior to the
beginning of the Roman/Jewish war.
John wrote Revelation to the 7 existing churches of Asia.
Peter and Paul, Martyrs
Peter probably died by crucifixion with
arms outstretched at the time of the Great
Fire of Rome in the year 64.
Paul was also martyred under the reign of
Nero, around AD 65.
The Coming Hour of Temptation
In the message to the church of Philadelphia
(Revelation 3:10-11) Christ told John to inform
them that an "hour of temptation" was "about
to come upon all the world”.
Had the church ever experienced “worldwide”
persecution before?
No. The first persecution of Christians took
place under Nero Caesar in AD 64.
John wrote Revelation before that time.
The Temple in Jerusalem
When John wrote Revelation, the Jewish temple was still standing.
Revelation 11:1-2, "And there was given me a reed like unto a rod: and
the angel stood, saying, Rise, and measure the temple of God, and the
altar, and them that worship therein. But the court which is without the
temple leave out, and measure it not; for it is given unto the Gentiles:
and the holy city shall they tread under foot forty and two months.”
The Temple in Jerusalem was completely destroyed in 70 AD, and in
Luke 21:20-24, Jesus told the disciples that they would see this event.
They had asked Him about their temple (verse 5), and Jesus told them
it would be destroyed before their generation passed away (verse 32).
Notice again what Jesus said in verse 24, "Jerusalem shall be trodden
down of the Gentiles.”
John wrote Revelation before 70 AD.
Is the date relevant?
• Absolutely.
• The Revelation of Jesus Christ is a book full of dire
warnings of a coming persecution of the Church.
• The horrific persecution of the Church, and the
destruction of Jerusalem and the Temple by the
Roman Emperors happened from the 60s and 70s
AD.
• It is perfectly reasonable to recognize the book of
Revelation as the prophetic warning of the
Roman persecution, which was fulfilled long ago.
Later Date Theories
• If you are familiar with theories of Revelation
being written at a later date, after 70 AD,
please present the evidence.

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Historical Context for the Bible: Revelation

  • 1. Historical Context for the Holy Bible Let’s start at the end: Revelation The Book of the Revelation of Jesus Christ
  • 2. Authorship: the Apostle John Revelation 1:4 John, To the seven churches in the province of Asia: 26Feb2017: I presented a lesson on the 7 churches in my Doctrine Series. Which were: 1. Ephesus, founded by Paul (Acts 19) on 1st missionary journey 2. Smyrna, believed to have been founded by Paul 3. Pergamum, unknown, but Catholic history suggests Paul had great influence 4. Thyatira, founded by Paul (Acts 16), near Philippi, it is Lydia’s home 5. Sardis, believed to have been the first church founded by John 6. Philadelphia, unknown, perhaps John 7. Laodicea, not founded by Paul, but nurtured by Paul (Colossians mentions)
  • 3. The Isle of Patmos and the 7 Churches
  • 4. When was Revelation written? There is only one small window of time in which there were only 7 churches in Asia. The early AD 60's. The apostle Paul founded, established and/or nurtured 9 churches in that area, but only 7 were addressed in Revelation. The reason for this is that the cities of Colosse, Hierapolis, and Laodicea, were all destroyed by an earthquake around AD 61. Laodicea was rebuilt soon afterwards, but the other 2 cities were not. This left only 7 churches in Asia during the 5 years just prior to the beginning of the Roman/Jewish war. John wrote Revelation to the 7 existing churches of Asia.
  • 5. Peter and Paul, Martyrs Peter probably died by crucifixion with arms outstretched at the time of the Great Fire of Rome in the year 64. Paul was also martyred under the reign of Nero, around AD 65.
  • 6. The Coming Hour of Temptation In the message to the church of Philadelphia (Revelation 3:10-11) Christ told John to inform them that an "hour of temptation" was "about to come upon all the world”. Had the church ever experienced “worldwide” persecution before? No. The first persecution of Christians took place under Nero Caesar in AD 64. John wrote Revelation before that time.
  • 7. The Temple in Jerusalem When John wrote Revelation, the Jewish temple was still standing. Revelation 11:1-2, "And there was given me a reed like unto a rod: and the angel stood, saying, Rise, and measure the temple of God, and the altar, and them that worship therein. But the court which is without the temple leave out, and measure it not; for it is given unto the Gentiles: and the holy city shall they tread under foot forty and two months.” The Temple in Jerusalem was completely destroyed in 70 AD, and in Luke 21:20-24, Jesus told the disciples that they would see this event. They had asked Him about their temple (verse 5), and Jesus told them it would be destroyed before their generation passed away (verse 32). Notice again what Jesus said in verse 24, "Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles.” John wrote Revelation before 70 AD.
  • 8. Is the date relevant? • Absolutely. • The Revelation of Jesus Christ is a book full of dire warnings of a coming persecution of the Church. • The horrific persecution of the Church, and the destruction of Jerusalem and the Temple by the Roman Emperors happened from the 60s and 70s AD. • It is perfectly reasonable to recognize the book of Revelation as the prophetic warning of the Roman persecution, which was fulfilled long ago.
  • 9. Later Date Theories • If you are familiar with theories of Revelation being written at a later date, after 70 AD, please present the evidence.