Revelation 1:1 Study Archive
And there was given me a reed like unto a rod: and the angel stood, saytng, Rise, and measure the temple of God, and the altar, and them that worship therein
Friedrich Dusterdieck (1886)
“It is sufficient for chronological interest, that prophecy depends upon the presupposition that the destruction of the Holy City had not yet occurred. This is derived with the greatest evidence from the text, since it is said, ver. 2, that the Holy City, i.e., Jerusalem, is to be trodden down by the Gentiles. . . . This testimony of the Apoc., which is completely indisputable to an unprejudiced mind, can still be misunderstood only with great difficulty.” (Critical and Exegetical Handbook to the Revelation of John, pp. 46-47.)
James M. Macdonald (1877)
“It is difficult to see how language could more clearly point to Jerusalem, and to Jerusalem as it was before its overthrow.”, (The Life and Writings of St John , p. 159.)
Jay E. Adams (1966)
“(the standing of the temple is) unmistakable proof that Revelation was written before 70 A.D.” (The Time is at Hand, p. 68).
Henry Cowles (1881)
“When Jeremiah and the old prophets contemplated and predicted the capture of Jerusalem, the fate of the temple could not be overlooked; indeed it was the first and central thought. No one prediction from Jeremiah made so much impression upon the people as that which declared (Jer. 7: 1-15, and 26: 6)—”I will make this house like Shiloh.” So in the present case the temple must needs come to mind before the doom of the city is consummated.—The “reed like a rod” and the measuring of the temple are in imitation of Ezek. 40.—Remarkably the best manuscripts omit the clause, “and the angel stood,” the passage reading literally—”There was given me a reed like a rod, saying,” etc., i. e., one, some one not defined, saying.—As to the significance of this transaction, no other view seems to me admissible save this—that it puts in other symbol what we had in chap. 7: 1-8, viz., the sifting out for salvation of all the precious elements from among the ancient covenant people before the last crushing blow should fall. The Simeons and the Annas, the devout and honest worshipers of the true God, must be carefully measured off and removed away, and possibly the symbol may include the idea that all which is worth preserving in the temple itself and its altar—all its embodied truths, all its symbolic power, all its hallowed associations—must be husbanded with a wise economy and treasured away safely before the storm of ruin shall engulf both city and temple. But the “court without the temple”—always far less holy—leave out; it is given to the Gentiles; the holy city they will tread proudly and insultingly under their feet three years and an half.—The great event predicted here is doubtless the siege and ultimate sack, pillage, and utter destruction of both city and temple by the Romans. The language in part (“trodden under foot”) follows that of Jesus himself (Luke 21: 24): “Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles.” But the time and in general the symbols take their shape from the very analogous case of the famous desecration of the temple by Antiochus as foretold by Daniel (8: 10-14, and 11: 31). This accounts for the duration named here—”forty two months”—this being precisely the period given by Daniel, and proximately the duration of the siege and sack of Jerusalem by the Romans.—That Jerusalem is certainly meant by “the holy city,” I do not see how any one can reasonably doubt. So of “the temple” and “the altar,” we are all afloat if we abandon the literal, normal sense of these words, and consult our fancy for some ideal sense which neither John or his first readers could possibly have thought of. Let us not forget that the writer is a Jew; that he was perfectly at home in whatever pertains to the temple, the altar, its worshipers, the court without and the holy city; that many of his readers also were familiar more or less with the Jewish sense of these words; so that it is simply impossible that they could have given any other sense to these words than what I have here assumed. Consequently here is one of the landmarks of our prophetic interpretation. We know that the temple, altar and holy city were standing at the time of this vision; we know they were on the very eve of their desolation; we know therefore that this desolation—so “shortly” after these visions were seen and recorded—can not possibly be any other than that effected by the Roman armies A. D. 70. It should be some comfort to us to know where we are in place and in time in this series of prophetic events. It gives a pleasing sense of certainty in the results of our investigations.” (Revelation, in loc.)
Ken Gentry (1989)
“If John wrote about literal Jerusalem (“where also their Lord was crucified”) twenty-five years after the destruction of the literal Temple (as per the evangelically formulated late date argument), it would seem most improbable that he would speak of the Temple as if it were still standing. The symbol would be confusing in its blatant anachronism. The Temple is required to be standing for the symbolical action of the vision to have any meaning. John uses the future tense when he speaks of the nations’ treading down the city. As just stated, this is not a reminiscence of a past event, but rather a future expectation.” (Before Jerusalem Fell, p.175)
Moses Stuart (1836)
“In Rev. 11:2, the time during which the Romans are to tread down the holy city, (in this case the capital is, as usual in the Jewish Scripture, the representation of the country), is said to be forty-two months = three and a half years. The active invasion of Judea continued almost exactly this length of time, being at the most only a few days more; so few that they need not, and would not, enter into symbolic computation of time.” (Stuart, p. 279)
Johannes Friedrich Bleek (1870)
“As to the time of writing, there are several statements which indicate this with tolerable clearness, and to which we have already referred. In the first division (ch. xi. 1-14) . . . Jerusalem and the temple are spoken of as still standing.” (An Introduction to the New Testament, 2:226).
Simon J. Kistemaker
“In contrast, lexicographers place the term naov Í (11:1, 2) in the category of the physical temple in Jerusalem.” (Walter Bauer, A Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament (2d rev. and augmented edition by F. Wilbur Gingrich and Frederick W. Danker from Walter Bauer’s 4th ed.; Chicago and London: University of Chicago Press, 1979) 533; Joseph Henry Thayer, Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament (New York: American Book Company, 1886) 422.)” (The Temple in the Apocalypse, p.1)
“In this case we are fairly obviously to think in terms of the earthly temple in Jerusalem.” (TDNT 4.887.)
John A. T. Robinson (1976)
“It is indeed generally agreed that this passage must bespeak a pre-70 situation.. There seems therefore no reason why the oracle should not have been uttered by a Christian prophet as the doom of the city drew nigh.” (Redating the New Testament pp.. 240-242).
Charles C. Torrey (1958)
“A most important passage, truly decisive in view of all the other evidence, is the beginning (the first two verses) of chapter 11.. This was written before the year 70, as all students of the book agree.” (The Apocalypse of John, p. 87)
Bernhard Weiss (1889)
“The time of the Apocalypse is also definitely fixed by the fact that according to the prophecy in chap. xi. it was manifestly written before the destruction of Jerusalem, which in xi. 1 is only anticipated.” (A Manual of Introduction to the New Testament, 2:82.)
Date: 20 Dec 2005
Will someone please comment on Steve Smith’s theory about the “final nun”. Do the manuscripts spell it with a final Nun?
Also, how about the correct, in context translation of the Greek word “charagma”: “No one buys or sells without the MONEY of the beast on/in mind/hand.”
Nero’s picture being on the money at the time the “Revelation” was written and the Jews revolted and coined their own $$$.
And, Do you believe Christians plagerized, the Revelation by adding stuff about Jesus at the beginning and end? That the book was originally written in Hebrew/Aramaic and that the Church destroyed all the evidence; destroyed all the original copies of “Revelation” that did not mention Jesus. Or maybe some of these versions exist in the Vatican vaults?!
For my take see: www.666isMONEY.com
Date: 12 Jun 2009
John the beloved knew that the literal temple was no longer valid in the community of believers. John is the one who told us that Christ’s body is the temple (Jn.2:21). The temple on earth consists of all believers on Christ. The temple spoken of in Rev.11:1 is this same temple: believers. In the temporal temple destruction in 70 ad, the entirety of it was destroyed. In Rev.11:2, only the courtyard is given unto the Gentiles. If you fail to interpret the 1,260 days as literal years, your prophetic interpretation will always falter.
Date: 03 Mar 2010
I agree with the preterist viewpoints. Revelation is John’s Olivet Discourse in greater detail than the other gospel writers. Postdating Revelation after 70 A.D. comes from one comment by Ireneas (sp)of which comment is very vague. Ireneas often got his dating wrong, even believing that Christ lived past the age of 50. If God spoke so much in the Old Testament of the destruction of Israel under the Assyrian Empire, and then the destruction of Jerusalem under the Babylon Empire, why then would God be so silent in the New Testament of the final devastation of Jerusalem under the Roman Empire. But instead God spoke of this destruction in detail in John’s Olivet discourse…the book of Revelation…the time of Jacob’s trouble. Greater than any other time of woe to Israel as this was the final destruction of the Theocracy of Israel in order to evidence that the Kingdom of God and His Christ had been ushered in. Acts two clearly explains that David liked the Resurrection of Christ to the seating of Christ on David’s throne. Truly the kingdom is here and advancing since that time…though not yet consummated.
Date: 11 May 2013
Even though usually jerusalem, in this passage the holy city is vatican city, the temple of god is the catholic church, the court are all the vaticans churches and buildings, the gentiles are the one world government/religion.
Too see what I mean read the next verse. By the altors and them that adore therin hes refering to those few who stay true catholics and have a valid mass said on their altors after the abomination of desolation takes away the continuL sacrifice by making a new invalid mass in which transubstantiation wont work