The following exchange was sent to me by one of our readers. He recently contacted a well known partial preterist– whose name I will omit at this time. The querist asked our noted author friend a good question, and received an answer. The querist then asked me to respond to the prominent author’s answer. We have omitted all personal information here, for confidentiality sake.
I recently asked >>>>> how he can see any further prophesy or resurrection in the Bible? I said according to Jesus, all that was written of the prophets would be fulfilled at 70 AD! His brief comment was (see below) I don’t get it! What in the world is he talking about? I pointed out Luke. 21 and his comment below.
[Quote:] Since Jesus says that all that is written in the prophets have been fulfilled, it’s obvious that He is referring to the prophets of the OT up till that time. If there is a prophecy after this, it does not fall into the category of fulfilled. The epistles and Revelation had not been written yet.[end quote:]
Don K. Preston’s response:
This is >>>’s way to cling onto some semblance of futurism, nothing more, and nothing less. He is saying that the Gospels and Revelation had not been written when Jesus spoke what he did in Luke 21. He is saying that since / if the epistles and Revelation contain something different than what had already been written, then, there is / could be, still prophecies to be fulfilled.
This overlooks a lot of stuff!
1.) All N. T. prophecy is simply the reiteration of what had already been written, i.e. the promises to Israel! So, to admit and say that the destruction of Jerusalem would be the fulfillment of what had been written at the moment Jesus uttered the words of Luke 21 does not offer one word of support for a futurist eschatology! Put another way, here is the argument, using our friend’s logic and words:
When Jesus said that all things written must be fulfilled, in the fall of Jerusalem, "He is referring to the prophets of the OT up till that time.", i.e. all things that had been written at the time Jesus spoke Luke 21.
But, the things that the O.T. prophets had written up till that time (the time when Jesus actually spoke Luke 21), included the prediction of the resurrection of the dead (Isaiah 25 / Hosea 13– as quoted by Paul in 1 Corinthians 15:55f), Christ’s parousia and the New Heavens and Earth (Isaiah 64-66– as cited by Peter and John in 2 Peter 3 and Revelation 21-22).
Therefore, the O.T. prophecies of the resurrection of the dead and the New Heavens and Earth– being O.T. prophecies written before Jesus uttered the words of Luke 21:22– were fulfilled at the time of the fall of Jerusalem in A.D. 70.
This argument is unavoidable, and is based on our friend’s own logic and argument.
2.) There are no extended prophecies in the N. T.. All N. T. predictions of the eschaton, i.e. the parousia, the judgment, and the resurrection, are all said to be near and coming soon by the N. T. writers. So, again, this does not help his attempt to cling to a futurist eschatology, for he is quite adamant in his writings that we must honor the N. T. time statements of imminence, and apply them to the Lord’s A.D. 70 parousia.
3.) Jesus’ statements in Luke are referent to the complete fulfillment of Daniel 9 for sure, and Daniel 9 predicted the resurrection! See my book Seventy Weeks Are Determined…For the Resurrection, or my Seal Up Vision and Prophecy, for a demonstration of this. Also, in my recent debate with Mac Deaver, I demonstrated this, and Deaver could not even begin to refute it. That debate is now available in MP3 format from me.
4.) Take a look at Revelation 10:7f. At the sounding of the Seventh Trumpet, all things written in the prophets would be fulfilled. But, in Revelation 11:15f, the resurrection of the dead occured at the time of the Seventh Trumpet— which is also at the time of the destruction of the city, "where the Lord was slain" (Revelation 11:8). And, I should point out that our friend believes that Revelation 11 does indeed apply to the Lord’s A.D. 70 parousia!
So, all that the prophets foretold would be fulfilled at the time of the sounding of the Seventh Trumpet.
The resurrection, would occur at the sounding of the Seventh Trumpet.
But, the sounding of the Seventh Trumpet–and the resurrection– would be at the judgment of the city where the Lord was slain.
Of course, this agrees perfectly with Luke 21:22, and nullifies what our friend has said.
So, where does this leave our friend any room for a future eschatology? He has no grounds for it. He is simply trying to hold on– desperately it seems to me– to some semblance of that.
I am not trying to be unkind here. I fully understand his struggle, and I have nothing but the highest regard for him and his writings! However, the answer that he has given you overlooks or denies too much Biblical testimony. I am convinced, since I feel that our friend is an honest student of the Lord’s Word, that one day, he will submit to the consistent testimony of the Word, and acknowledge that Christ’s parousia did indeed occur in A.D. 70. There is no scriptural justification for a futurist eschatology.
I hope that this helps, and thanks for contacting me!
For His Truth, and in His Grace,
Don K. Preston