There are 4 main views of “Last Days” which is called “Eschatology”.
1.Historical ~ That the “last days” started almost 2,000 years ago and are gradually fulfilled.
2. Idealist ~ That much of the “Last Days” prophecies simply describe the spiritual journey that people go through during life and not literal historical events.
3. Futurist ~ That most of the last days prophecies will happen at once, within one final generation of mankind.
4. Preterist ~ That most of the last days prophecies were directed specifically to natural Israel and were fulfilled within one generation of Jesus at 70 AD. ****
All of my life, I was a die-hard futurist that had only ever heard of that one view. I didn’t even know the other’s existed and simply listened to many different vantage points based on the futurist view. Pre-Tribulation, Mid-Trib. and Post-Trib. being the main 3.
The Book of Revelation was defined by the author, John in the first verse.“1The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave Him to show to His bond-servants…”
Jesus had already been revealed in the flesh and gone back to the Father but, this prophecy unveiled him more fully! Revelation is about Jesus (imagine that) not the “end of the world”. It contains very powerful symbolism that the O.T. Prophets, and their readers were familiar with to convey a powerful point in Rev.19:16. Jesus is ~“KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS.”
The Wrath and judgements of God described in great detail within this prophecy were never due to the whole world or the Gentile nations. That negates the power of Jesus’ Cross! (Col.1:20) Jesus even interceded forgiveness for his murderers on the cross but, they continued to reject their King and His Covenant to the point of pursuing Christians and murdering whoever believed in Jesus name!
God is not a God of wrath. He offered the Israelites a better Covenant in the wilderness but, mankind botched it (like we always have) and God seems to have regretfully given them the Old (Mosaic) Covenant and the Law. Paul made the Law’s purpose very clear in Romans and Galatians 3 ~19Why then was the Law given? It was imposed later on for the sake of defining sin, until the seed should come to whom God had made the promise..”
Romans 5:20 ~20But there was the introduction to The Written Law that sin would increase, and wherever sin increased, there grace superabounded.”
The Law was not God’s best but, it was necessary because of mankind’s rebelliousness and sin to demonstrate God’s best through Jesus! Jesus (not Isaac or Ishmael) was the “Seed” that would come and did come! Through Jesus the promise of God’s Spirit is given! That’s the New Covenant that was prophesied throughout the Old Testament from Moses to Malachi! Moses prophesied very similar sounding judgements described in Revelation to Israel for the “end of their days” when they would refuse God’s voice (Jesus) and reject His Covenant!
Even before they had entered the Promised Land, Moses declared the same things that Isaiah, Jeremiah and everyone up to Jesus prophesied.
~ Complete destruction on Jerusalem, the Temple and the Jews until the Gentiles were brought into the Kingdom.
Jesus declared it would come on “that generation” many times in Matt.21-24, Mark 13 and Luke 21 but never prophesied it would come on the whole world! That is a mistranslation that is corrected in any Literal Translation of the Bible. (YLT or BLT)
Jesus demonstrated who God is and He never demonstrated wrath. He only warned “that generation” and the religious leaders of the same wrath that all previous prophets had declared to them. Hebrews 8:13 made it very clear that the Old Covenant (which contained wrath) was being wrapped up because Jesus made it obsolete and the New Covenant was being fully realized. The book of Hebrews and even Revelation only make sense when we see that they describe in great symbolism a very brief time in Jewish history that the Old Covenant was being completed and the New Covenant being brought it. (Heb.9:8)
The New Covenant has many promises of no wrath. Romans 4 ~15for the Law brings about wrath, but where there is no law, there also is no violation.”
God’s wrath was wrapped up in the Law and the Old Covenant. God has given us the better covenant of unending love. Preterism clarifies why we aren’t going to go through some future doomsday because God is not full of wrath….God is love.
***There are different degrees of believed fulfillment of preterism too. Some don’t believe that Jesus will still manifest himself to the world. I believe that is an extreme and wrong view. We are all growing in understanding daily and trust the Holy Spirit to continue to guide us in all Truth in the Scriptures. (John 16:13)