The Evangelical Universalist Forum

Aionios in 2Tim 1:9, Titus 1:2 and Rom 16:25


I tend to take our Lord’s predictions in the literal sense, if that sense makes sense. Matthew 24 seems to be the preterist “stronghold.” But I have major problems with assigning the events therein described, to the fall of Jerusalem and the destruction of the temple around 70 A.D.

For as the lightning comes from the east and shines as far as the west, so will be the coming of the Son of Man. Wherever the corpse is, there the vultures will gather. Immediately after the tribulation of those days the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light, and the stars will fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken. Then will appear in heaven the sign of the Son of Man, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. And he will send out his angels with a loud trumpet call, and they will gather his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other (Matthew 24: 27-31 ESV)

Did the coming of the Son of Man occur around 70 A.D.? Did He gather his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other? Was the sun darkened? Did the moon not give its light? Did the stars fall from heaven?

I don’t know why translators render the word “αστραπη” as “lightning.” It should be translated as “lighting.” It refers to the lighting of the sun that appears to come from the east (at sunrise) and shines to the west (later in the day). Everyone sees the sunrise and the sunset. So it will be when Christ returns. Everyone will see Him. Jesus Himself warned against those who claim a secret coming.

So, if they say to you, ‘Look, he is in the wilderness,’ do not go out. If they say, ‘Look, he is in the inner rooms,’ do not believe it. For as the lighting [of the sun] comes from the east and shines as far as the west, so will be the coming of the Son of Man. (Matthew 24:26,27)

The fact that everyone will see Him at his coming is also verified in Revelation:

Behold, He is coming with clouds, and every eye will see Him, even they who pierced Him. And all the tribes of the earth will mourn because of Him. (Revelation 1:7 ESV)

Thus we can be sure that when Jesus returns, everyone will know it. But no one knew of any coming of Christ in 70 A.D. Josephus who wrote in detail of the events concerning the fall of Jerusalem and the destruction of the temple around 70 A.D. never referred to that coming. The Christians of the second century never mentioned it, and there is no historical record of it. So if He came in 70 A.D. one may say that “no eye ever saw Him.”


Says You. There is more scriptural evidence of a 70 AD Parousia than any for a future one. Everyone in that time did see Him coming and it was an awful terrible thing. And yes EVERYONE did know it. You don’t have to like or agree but the evidence is there. YOU WERE NOT THERE!!!

But I still love you :smiley:


Matthew 24:27-31:

For what it’s worth, I have the following understandings:

“the tribulation of those days” = Jesus Christ’s Passion in A. D. 30, beginning with His struggles in Gethsemane and ending with His death upon the Cross

“the sun will be darkened” = “Now from the sixth hour until the ninth hour there was darkness over all the land.” (Matthew 27:45)

“the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory” = Christ’s Ascension into Heaven in A. D. 30 (cf. Daniel 7:13, in which the Son of Man comes from earth to Heaven.)

The “angels” (Greek “messengers”) are the Apostles, sent by Christ to gather the Church from all lands and places.

In short, I think that Christ’s Olivet Discourse refers to events that culminated in A. D. 30. I do not think in this discourse Christ was talking about things that would happen in the far future, not even 40 years in the future. I believe this discourse was given at the beginning of His ministry (circa A. D. 28), and that it was fulfilled by A. D. 30. It took only two years to fulfill. I think that the only references to the Second Coming are in Acts and in the Epistles.


This is the deficiency of popular literalist futurism… it fails to grasp (or just plainly ignores because this has been pointed out before) the biblical use/pattern of biblical prophetic language.

Given that you’re waiting for a physical cosmic catastrophe you’ll be waiting for a while. But IF when appealing for understanding… looking back into the Scriptures this can be found and deemed useful in helping determine to what Jesus was referring to via his mini apocalypse…

In biblical parlance Joseph’s father and brothers UNDERSTOOD COMPLETELY this cosmic metaphor, symbolic of headship and eldership i.e., leadership FALLING before him. Again, with reference to THE FALL of Babylon Isaiah’s prophetic oracle uses such cosmic language…

Likewise there is Joel’s prophetic words towards Pentecost which follow on from what Peter had declared “this IS that” which would be in their lifetime, followed by…

Such cosmic language was used to demonstrate the height of the significance of the things spoken… and THEY would have UNDERSTOOD IT accordingly. The world of the old covenant was near to FALL and those that clung to it would lose all, but those enduring who believed Jesus’ words would be “saved.”

YEAH AND… would you expect such a clear delineation from someone NOT associated with the faith; seriously?! But that said, Eusebius certainly makes valid reference to Josephus’ accounts of that era…


This makes interesting reading from Eusebius Pamphili of Caesarea (AD. 264-339)


Wiki research does uphold this viewpoint at Eusebius

It’s time to celebrate the 4th of July - in the US :smiley:


Paidion, compare Jesus’ description of the end times to how David described God saving him from his enemies.

2 Samuel 22 (NRSV)
In my distress I called upon the Lord;
to my God I called.
From his temple he heard my voice,
and my cry came to his ears.
Then the earth reeled and rocked;
the foundations of the heavens trembled
and quaked, because he was angry.
Smoke went up from his nostrils,
and devouring fire from his mouth;
glowing coals flamed forth from him.
He bowed the heavens, and came down;
thick darkness was under his feet.

He rode on a cherub, and flew;
he was seen upon the wings of the wind.

He made darkness around him a canopy,
thick clouds, a gathering of water.
Out of the brightness before him
coals of fire flamed forth.

The Lord thundered from heaven;
the Most High uttered his voice.
He sent out arrows, and scattered them
—lightning, and routed them.
Then the channels of the sea were seen,
the foundations of the world were laid bare

at the rebuke of the Lord,
at the blast of the breath of his nostrils.
He reached from on high, he took me,
he drew me out of mighty waters.
He delivered me from my strong enemy,
from those who hated me;
for they were too mighty for me.
They came upon me in the day of my calamity,
but the Lord was my stay.
He brought me out into a broad place;
he delivered me, because he delighted in me.*


Okay, some of you preterists did a fine job of showing that there is figurative language in the Old Testament concerning astronomical phenomenae. I’m well aware of it, and have heard it expressed several times previously. However, that is not the matter of which I said that there is no evidence. I said that there is no evidence of the second coming of Christ in or around A.D. 70, the coming in which “every eye shall see Him.”

Davo, Eusebius’ writing that you quote refers only to the part of our Lord’s predictions that refer to the events of A.D. 70 or thereabouts. Nowhere did Eusebius indicate that the predicted coming of Christ occurred then. The historic evidence that Christ returned around 70 A.D. is totally absent. Maintenance Man, the fact that I was not there in 70 A.D. is irrelevant to the fact of there is not a shred of historical evidence that Christ returned at that time.

Paul’s fellow-worker Clement (A.D. 30-100)—See Philippians 4:3—wrote a powerful letter to the Corinthians after Paul and Peter’s deaths. His letter is believed to have been written around A.D. 90. In ch. XXIII, he referred to a coming of the Lord as future to his time. If the Lord had returned in 70 A.D., he would have been well aware of it (as would everyone else at that time (Every eye shall see Him).

Justin Martyr (A.D. 100-165) in his "Dialogue With Trypho referred to “the second coming of Christ” as a future event in Chapters XLV, LIV, and CX.
Irenæus (A.D. 120-202) wrote in “Against Heresies” of a coming of Christ future to his time in ch. XXIII.

But which of the early writers wrote of a coming of Christ in 70 A.D.? The answer—no one. For in their day, no one had ever heard of such a thing.


To be truthful Paidion you made the bold claim, that… “The Christians of the second century never mentioned it, and there is no historical record of it.” Your bogus claim has been found wanting by the contrary evidence amply supplied.

Again Paidion… no matter the weight of evidence contrary to your particular partisan belief you WILL NOT SEE anything other than what your myopia permits – case in point, this quote supplied by Holy-Fool-P-Zombie above makes a mockery of your fraudulent claim…

How you can continue to peddle such misinformation on this as you do is beyond me. Again this is just blind adherence to a position that cannot / will not countenance that which threatens sacred cows.

Still you fail to see that the bible’s “cloud coming” language IS the language of Yahweh’s Coming in Judgment… which is demonstrably clear from the texts already shown. Jesus CAME in-kind in the POWER/AUTHORITY of Yahweh. THAT’S what the Parousia was all about… judgment on the OLD by the fullness of the NEW!


Hi Davo. Let me play Devil’s Advocate for a moment. I looked at the Protestant site Got Questions article entitled What is the preterist view of the end times?. I’m curious how you would respond to this segment:

The Got Questions site elaborates on their meaning of “this generation”, in What did Jesus mean when He said, “this generation will not pass”?

I thought I would use the article at Preterism Biblical Commentary, to define a couple terms, from the Got Questions article (note: to present a balanced perspective, this site is pro-Preterism).

I assume Davo is a full pretertist. :exclamation: :smiley:

As an aside, another Protestant site did render a fuller criticism at Why Preterism is not an Accurate Interpretation of Bible Prophecy. But there are those out there, that side with you - according to this article:

Here is a Wiki article on Hank Hanegraaff
Here is a Wiki article on Gary DeMar

Hum :exclamation: I wonder what known, contemporary figures (other than open theists), side with Paidion’s position :question: :laughing:


Davo, what do you take as the reference of that “it”? You seem to suggest my “it” was something other than the supposed coming of Christ in A.D. 70.

Here is the exact quote of me in context:

I still stand by this assertion. There is no historical evidence of a coming of Christ in A.D. 70. Absolutely zilch.

I will be responding to your quote of Eusebius at a later time.

Meanwhile, I wish you the best, and trust you will consider some of your statements more thoughtfully, such as, “Your bogus claim has been found wanting by the contrary evidence amply supplied.” I don’t think there’s anything “bogus” about my claim that there is no historical evidence of Christ having returned in A.D. 70. You have not yet supplied a single piece of such historical evidence. On the other hand, I have provided the testimony of Clement, Paul’s fellow labourer, who lived during the destruction of Jerusalem in A.D. 70, who in his letter to the Corinthians around A.D. 90, never mentioned a coming of Christ in A.D. 70. but rather predicted a future coming. I also stated that Justin Martyr had referred in his “Dialogue With Trypho” to a future “second coming of Christ” three times, and Irenæus also wrote of a future coming. This seems to be clear evidence that these early Christians expected a second coming of Christ future to the time in which they lived. If Justin Martyr had believed that Christ returned in A.D. 70, he would have referred to the future coming of Christ as a “third coming” rather than a “second coming.”


Again, Davo, I suggest you watch your language. It is inflammatory. Are you saying these things in a spirit of love?

I could call your claim that Christ returned in A.D. 70 fraudulent. But I don’t do that. I respect you in spite of the fact that you haven’t earned that respect. I don’t think you are a fraud;I think you are sincere in your full-preterist belief. Surely you can at least acknowledge that I am sincere, rather than suggesting that my claims are fraudulent (claims made in order to intentionally deceive). I don’t mind you making the best arguments of which you are capable, but I don’t appreciate your calumnious attacks. They don’t give any measure of support to your belief that Christ returned in A.D. 70., but rather tend to cast doubt on you for resorting to such tactics instead employing carefully reasoned statements or historical evidence for any return of Christ during the fall of Jerusalem and the destruction of the temple.

As for the quote of Eusebius above, the context makes clear that he was not writing about any supposed coming of Christ in A.D 70. Rather he was writing about the coming of Christ, as a human being, having been born through his mother Mary (often referred to as the “first” coming of Christ).

The paragraph immediately preceding the quote from Eusebius is as follows:

This paragraph clearly indicated that he is writing about the coming of Christ when He was seen by many people on earth.

After making references to a few more events surrounding the coming of Christ, Eusebius sums it all up as follows:


Are you referring to my position that the second coming of Christ is future to our time? If so, then as far as I know, all Christians except full preterists (and maybe some very liberal Christians) believe that Christ will come again in the future (including Catholics). Even partial preterists hold that the second coming is yet future. That belief is what defines them as partial preterists. Steve Gregg is a partial preterist.


Hi, Paidion. I’m just playing the “Holy Fool” and clowning around. I do respect Davo and his knowledge and exposition of scripture. But if I did side with Perterism, it would be as a partial Perterist. i agree with a future coming of Christ. I believe (as you do) that most of the contemporary Christian bodies (i.e. Roman Catholic , Eastern Orthodox and Protestant), would agree with a future (or possibly present) coming of Christ.

There might be people here I disagree with, but I might respect how they present their position. But since we are human beings (and not Mr. Spock or Mr. data - from the Star Trek series), emotions could easily cloud our presentations. But emotional reaction can be minimized, by training in such things as “real” martial arts, Zen or Insight Meditation (or hanging around “Holy Fools” and “P-Zombies”). We just have to be as cool as Fonzie - from Happy Days. :exclamation: :laughing:

How about a Zombie love song, to get everyone back to cool :question: Hum. What if the end-times, is like the Walking Dead? Some of us go to heaven, some stay behind for a while - as humans? And the worst become P-Zombies? And the humans have to live with them - for a while. And if universalism is true, we all go to the same place eventually. And the P-Zombies become human again. Oh, dear. Oh, My. How does everyone like my vision, of the end-times? :laughing:


Randy posted:

On whatever side you fall on in this debate, I would recommend listening to some of Gary DeMar’s American vision episodes. I do not think he considers himself a full preterist (unless something has changed in the last few years), but his delivery and knowledge seem to be pretty top notch. Real good stuff. :smiley:


Sorry Paidion… you are right, I can get a little overly and descriptively robust at times, my bad; absolutely nothing of a personal nature intended. I will get back to your posts presently. :nerd:


DeMar is a partial prêterist. My journey to a fuller and inclusive prêterism (what I call pantelism) came naturally via partial prêterism and at the time greatly helped by DeMar’s brilliant book… Last Days Madness: Obsession of the Modern Church.


Well, I have not read DeMar’s book, though I will look into it.

David your passion for truth is evident in both your knowledge (and thus study) of the topic at hand and also your willingness to take on all comers when it comes to what you view as the truth of the fulfilled eschatology view. Those who have not seen your web site owe it to themselves to view your posts… very thoughtful and very insightful. For those who don’t Know, go to

The full preterist view is some what flawed in my opinion as I do believe in the universalist view of scripture. David deals with this in what he says is inclusionary… I hope I said that right. The view that death has been put away allows all to be included into God’s reconciliatory act of sending us the Christ… The Messiah. Through Israel, all the nations (humanity) will be blessed.

Please don’t think I am speaking for David, I am just voicing my agreement with his published idea’s on the subject.


I enjoy Davo’s posting too. My concern is if he doesn’t think “any” of the Bible should be taken literally. Most importantly, if Davo doesn’t believe that Jesus performed miracles during his ministry, that Jesus died, and that Jesus rose from the dead.


Let me ease your “concern” qaz… I’m good with all the above. :sunglasses:


Before the continuing debate between Davo and Paidion (i.e. Pantelism vs Futerist), I have a message for everyone. Get them while they’re hot. :laughing:

You can find a definition of Dave’s postion - Pantelism - here.

We find a definition of Futurism (Christianity) here

Oh, yes. A question for Davo. If everything was achieved in 70 AD, then why is everyone still waiting and suffering :question:

And from Questions Preterists Wished You Would Not Ask:

Now back to our sponsor. :exclamation: :laughing: