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Clement of Alexandria
(c.150- 220)

Founder of the allegorical school of Biblical Interpretation | Teacher of Origen

“Shepherd of Tender Youth” – A.D.200 Earliest Known Hymn with Author

Excerpts from Homilies | Excerpts from Stromata | Fragments of Clemens Alexandrinus

“Being baptized, we are illuminated; illuminated, we become sons; being made sons, we are made perfect; being made perfect, we are made immortal…This work is variously called grace, and illumination, and perfection, and washing: washing, by which we cleanse away our sins; grace, by which that holy light of salvation is beheld, that is, by which we see God clearly.”


(On The ‘Seventy Weeks’ of Daniel)
“”The Temple was rebuilt in seven weeks: then, after an interval of sixty-two weeks, the Messiah came. then, after an interval of half a week, Nero placed an abomination in the Temple of Jerusalem: and, after another half-week, the Temple was destroyed by Vespasian.”

“And thus Christ became King of the Jews, reigning in Jerusalem in the fulfillment of the seven weeks. And in the sixty and two weeks the whole of Judaea was quiet, and without wars. And Christ our Lord, “the Holy of Holies,” having come and fulfilled the vision and the prophecy, was anointed in His flesh by the Holy Spirit of His Father. In those “sixty and two weeks,” as the prophet said, and “in the one week,” was He Lord. The half of the week Nero held sway, and in the holy city Jerusalem placed the abomination; and in the half of the week he was taken away, and Otho, and Galba, and Vitellius. And Vespasian rose to the supreme power, and destroyed Jerusalem, and desolated the holy place.  And that such are the facts of the case, is clear to him that is able to understand, as the prophet said.” [The Stromata, Or Miscellanies. Book 1. ed. A.Roberts and J. Donaldson, 4.0 ed., The Ante-Nicene Fathers, Vol. 1, vol. 1), p. 307.]

(On Matthew 24:15, The Abomination of Desolation)
“We have still to add to our chronology the following, — I mean the days which Daniel indicates from the desolation of Jerusalem, the seven years and seven months of the reign of Vespasian. For the two years are added to the seventeen months and eighteen days of Otho, and Galba, and Vitellius; and the result is three years and six months, which is “the half of the week,” as Daniel the prophet said. For he said that there were two thousand three hundred days from the time that the abomination of Nero stood in the holy city, till its destruction. For thus the declaration, which is subjoined, shows: “How long shall be the vision, the sacrifice taken away, the abomination of desolation, which is given, and the power and the holy place shall be trodden under foot? And he said to him, Till the evening and morning, two thousand three hundred days, and the holy place shall be taken away.”

“These two thousand three hundred days, then, make six years four months, during the half of which Nero held sway, and it was half a week; and for a half, Vespasian with Otho, Galba, and Vitellius reigned. And on this account Daniel says, “Blessed is he that cometh to the thousand three hundred and thirty-five days.” For up to these days was war, and after them it ceased. And this number is demonstrated from a subsequent chapter, which is as follows: “And from the time of the change of continuation, and of the giving of the abomination of desolation, there shall be a thousand two hundred and ninety days. Blessed is he that waiteth, and cometh to the thousand three hundred and thirty-five days.” ” (The Ante-Nicene Fathers, vol. 2, p. 334)

(On Matthew 24:3,34)
“But our Master did not prophesy after this fashion; but, as I have already said, being a prophet by an inborn and every-flowing Spirit, and knowing all things at all times, He confidently set forth, plainly as I said before, sufferings, places, appointed times, manners, limits. Accordingly, therefore, prophesying concerning the temple, He said: “See ye these buildings? Verily I say to you, There shall not be left here one stone upon another which shall not be taken away [Matt. 24:3]; and this generation shall not pass until the destruction begin [Matt. 24:34]. . . .” And in like manner He spoke in plain words the things that were straightway to happen, which we can now see with our eyes, in order that the accomplishment might be among those to whom the word was spoken. (Clementine Homilia, 3:15. See Roberts and Donaldson, Ante-Nicene Fathers, 8:241.)

(On the Significance of the A.D.70)
“Whence also Peter, in his Preaching, speaking of the apostles, says: ‘But we, unrolling the books of the prophets which we possess, who name Jesus Christ, partly in parables, partly in enigmas, partly expressly and in so many words, find His coming and death, and cross, and all the rest of the tortures which the Jews inflicted on Him, and His resurrection and assumption to heaven previous to the capture of Jerusalem. As it is written, These things are all that He behooves to suffer, and what should be after Him. Recognizing them, therefore, we have believed in God in consequence of what is written respecting Him.’ ” (Miscellanies 4:15)

(On the Timing of John’s Banishment)
And to give you confidence, when you have thus truly repented, that there remains for you a trustworthy hope of salvation, hear a story that is no mere story, but a true account of John the apostle that has been handed down and preserved in memory. When after the death of the tyrant (previously identified as Nero) he removed from the island of’ Patmos to Ephesus, he used to journey by request to the neighboring districts of the Gentiles, in some places to appoint bishops, in others to regulate whole churches, in others to set among the clergy some one man, it may be, of those indicated by the Spirit. (Who is the Rich Man that shall be Saved?, Section 42)

(On the end of Apostolic revelation)
“Mystagogues of the souls of the impious. ” “They do not make a right but a perverse use of the divine words. “

“For the teaching of our Lord at His advent, beginning with Augustus and Tiberius, was completed in the middle of the times of Tiberius. And that of the apostles, embracing the ministry of Paul, end with Nero.” (Miscellanies 7:17.)

(On the Identity of Israel under the New Covenant)
“Let us then draw near to Him with holiness of spirit, lifting up pure and undefiled hands unto Him, loving our gracious and merciful Father, who has made us partakers in the blessings of His elect. For thus it is written, When the Most High divided the nations, when He scattered the sons of Adam, He fixed the bounds of the nations according to the number of the angels of God. His people Jacob became the portion of the Lord, and Israel the lot of His inheritance. And in another place [the Scripture] saith, Behold, the Lord taketh unto Himself a nation out of the midst of the nations, as a man takes the first-fruits of his threshing-floor; and from that nation shall come forth the Most Holy. Seeing, therefore, that we are the portion of the Holy One, let us do all those things which pertain to holiness,. . . ” (Epistle to the Corinthians, 34.)

(That Christ was soon to return in the second century)
“Far from us be that which is written, “Wretched are they who are of a double mind, and of a doubting heart; who say, These things we have heard even in the times of our fathers; but, behold, we have grown old, and none of them has happened unto us..”(10) Ye foolish ones! compare yourselves to a tree: take [for instance] the vine. First of all, it sheds its leaves, then it buds, next it puts forth leaves, and then it flowers; after that comes the sour grape, and then follows the ripened fruit. Ye perceive how in a little time the fruit of a tree comes to maturity. Of a truth, soon and suddenly shall His will be accomplished, as the Scripture also bears witness, saying, “Speedily will He come, and will not tarry;”(11) and, “The Lord shall suddenly come to His temple, even the Holy One, for whom ye look.” (The Epistles to the Corinthians, ch. 23)


Martin Anstey
“Clement of Alexandria (3rd Century A.D.) was a disciple of Pantaenus, the founder of the famous catechetical school at Alexandria, and the teacher of Origen. He was a widely-read scholar, familiar with the whole body of classic literature, and with the books of the Old and New Testaments. He was the founder of the allegorical school of Biblical Interpretation, and the author of some able defences of Christianity against the absurdities and immoralities of pagan theology. The four works of his that have come down to us are (1) An Admonition to the Gentiles, (2) The Paedagogue, (3) Stromata, and (4) Who is the rich man that is saved? Amongst his lost works the most important, known to us only through fragmentary paraphrases in other authors, was his great work entitled Hypotyposes i.e., Types or Adumbrations.”

Robert Jamieson (On The Early Date of Revelation)
“The following arguments favor an earlier date, namely, under Nero: (1) EUSEBIUS [Demonstration of the Gospel] unites in the same sentence John’s banishment with the stoning of James and the beheading of Paul, which were under Nero. (2) CLEMENT OF ALEXANDRIA’S‘S story of the robber reclaimed by John, after he had pursued, and with difficulty overtaken him, accords better with John then being a younger man than under Domitian, when he was one hundred years old. Arethas, in the sixth century, applies the sixth seal to the destruction of Jerusalem (A.D. 70), adding that the Apocalypse was written before that event. So the Syriac version states he was banished by Nero the Cæsar. Laodicea was overthrown by an earthquake (A.D. 60) but was immediately rebuilt, so that its being called “rich and increased with goods” is not incompatible with this book having been written under the Neronian persecution (A.D. 64). ” (JFB Commentary, Introduction to Revelation)

St. Jerome
The learned scholar Clement, presbyter of the church at Alexandria, regards the number of years as a matter of slight consequence, (691) asserting that the seventy weeks of years were completed by the span of time from the reign of Cyrus, King of the Persians, to the reign of the Roman emperors, Vespasian and Titus; that is to say, the interval of four hundred and ninety years, with the addition in that same figure of the two thousand three hundred days of which we made earlier mention. He attempts to reckon in these seventy weeks the ages of the Persians, Macedonians, and Caesars, even though according to the most careful computation, the number of years from the first year of Cyrus, King of the Persians and Medes, when Darius also bore rule, up to the reign of Vespasian and the destruction of the Temple amounts to six hundred and thirty.”   (Commentary on Daniel; Chapter 9)


C. Jonathan Seraiah
“It is true that the “eschatology” of the New Testament is predominantly preterist. For those unfamiliar with the preterist perspective, it is the ancient view that many of the eschatological passages of the New Testament were fulfilled (completely) in the destruction of Jerusalem in a.d. 70. This view may sound novel, but in reality there have been orthodox adherents to it throughout church history (e.g., Clement of Alexandria, Eusebius, John Lightfoot, John Owen, Milton Terry, Jay Adams). This interpretation does not deny the Final Coming of Christ; it merely finds that not all “coming” passages refer to that event. The preterist interpretation is actually the most faithful to the biblical text because it recognizes that Old Testament prophetic terminology was used by the New Testament authors. This recognition is helpful in distinguishing the prophecies of Christ’s coming that were near, in the first century (Matt. 10:2316:2824:3026:641 Thess. 5:22 Thess. 1:7James 5:7-91 Pet. 4:7Rev. 1:37; etc.) and thus fulfilled in a.d. 70, from those that were far (John 5:28-29Acts 1:11; 17:31; 1 Cor. 15:23-241 Thess. 4:161 Jn. 3:2; etc.) and thus not yet fulfilled even in our day. It also helps to distinguish between a spiritual “coming” (invisible for temporal judgment, as in a.d. 70) and a physical coming (visible for eternal judgment).” (End of All Things)

G.H. Van Kooten
“The only comparable independent patristic information (on the dating of Revelation) seems to be provided by Clement of Alexandria, according to whom ‘on the tyrant’s death, he [i.e. John] returned to Ephesus from the isle of Patmos’ (What Rich Man Can Be Saved? 42).  Clement, however, does not specify this tyrant’s identity, and it is only Eusebius who, when quoting Clement, assumes, in the light of Irenaeus’ claims, that this tyrant is Domitian (Church History, 3.23.5).  Clement himself appears to apply the contents of Daniel’s prophecies, which also resonate in Revelation, to the year of the four emperors in Stromata 1.21: ‘Nero held sway, and in the holy city Jerusalem placed the abomination: and.. he was taken away, and Otho, and Galba, and Vitellius.  And Vespasian rose to the supreme power, and destroyed Jerusalem.'” (The Year of the Four Emperors and the Revelation of John PDF)

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08 Sep 2003


I did not realize God’s two prophets died in the street for 3 days and rose again to the astonishment of onlookers when 70 AD took place? I am eager to read more about this past event. Also the earth quakes being greater during that time more than ever since the beginning of earth must have been something. I am still new to all these prophets who say thus sayeth the LORD but I plead with Jesus/GOD to have mercy on us all. Least of all me a sinner who repented not of my own doing but of Jesus doing and mercy. I was able to move away from athieism, paganism, etc. and was taught the bible was fiction as a teenager, i.e. from priests who were lied to and passed the lies on to children in schools, replacing signs, wonders and spiritual gifts with fables, etc. I have seen many signs and wonders and I pray Jesus makes good out of our wretched ungodly world of today. Jeff Vincelette A Wretch Like Me