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Church-State Relations and the Book of Revelation
An Introduction to The Parousia: A Careful Look at the New Testament Doctrine of the Lord's Second Coming
by James Stuart Russell (1878) // Written by
Todd Dennis, Curator
 



 

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STORYLINE SURROUNDING THIS AUTHOR AND THE EARLIEST KNOWN FULL PRETERIST  :
 


Robert Townley - Earliest Known Full Preterist (All Prophecy Fulfilled By AD70)


Attacks David Thom's Universalism in 1845 Book "
Second Advent a Past Event"


Thom Pens "Man's Enmity" partially in response, and Townley converted to Universalism


Thom acquaints American Universalist Preterists to Townley in letter of recommendation


Tonwley becomes pastor of  Preteristic "Charlestown Universalist Church" in Boston

 


THE NUMBER AND NAMES
OF THE
 
APOCALYPTIC BEASTS

WITH
AN EXPLANATION AND APPLICATION.

Dr. David Thom
PH. D., A. M., HEIDELBERG,
MINISTER OF BOLD STREET CHAPEL, LIVERPOOL

LONDON: H. K.
LEWIS, 15, GOWER STREET, NORTH.
LIVERPOOL: GEORGE PHILIP.

LONDON : MDCCCXLVIII.
 

"By some, the whole Book is considered to have received its accomplishment in the fact, and at the period of Jerusalem's destruction. Among the American Universalists of the Ballou school, this view is just now very prevalent."


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"Various works on the subject of Apocalyptic or general prophecy, such as those of Jurieu, Bossuet, Semler, Sir Isaac Newton, Dr. S. Lee.." (xxi)

"For many years I have rejected unhesitatingly, and on what seem to myself to be most valid and satisfactory grounds, the notion,— might I not even be justified in calling it the fable ? — of this Book having been composed towards the close of the first century, A. D. 95 or 96, or thereabouts. Evidence to substantiate this, which is the common opinion, is, it appears to me, totally a-wanting. Events connected with the destruction of Jerusalem, and the passing away, at that era, of the Old Testament economy, are in more than one part of it clearly and strikingly spoken of, as matters of future occurrence : and if so, it must have proceeded from the pen of inspiration before A. D. 69 or 70 ; unless we feel disposed to impute to the Holy Ghost the uttering of prophecies subsequently to their accomplishment. Can it be shewn satisfactorily, indeed, that any of the New Testament records were composed at a later period than the one which has just been indicated ? I believe not." (pp. 8-9)

The fact is, that, while the composition of the Apocalypse preceded the period of Jerusalem's destruction, A. D. 69, and while it had for one object, among other and far more important ones, to prepare the minds of the disciples  for that rapidly approaching event, and the consequences which were therein involved, it was intended not to be subservient to other inspired writings, but to be the consummation of them all. As respects the passing away of the Mosaic economy, it was to be the final warning. Hence the Apocalypse is, as on the face of our Bibles it appears to be, the last specimen of prophetic inspiration; and its grand object, as may afterwards be shewn, is to serve as a summary and exponent of all that had gone before.  (p. 12)

"By some, the whole Book is considered to have received its accomplishment in the fact, and at the period of Jerusalem's destruction. Among the American Universalists of the Ballou school, this view is just now very prevalent. Similar, also, judging from Wilkinson's "Last Days," and Mr. Stark's writings, I take to be the opinion of the Salemites, a recent sect, having its locality chiefly in Devonshire. Pushed to an extreme is this theory, in " The Second Coming of Jesus Christ a Past Event," by Robert Townley, A.B., 1845. These notions may have sprung up in the minds of modern enquirers, from a perusal of the Scriptures themselves. For my own part, however, I am inclined to think, that, although perhaps unconsciously, they have had their origin in theories propounded, and in views entertained and promulgated, by Grotius, Hammond, and others, two centuries ago. Maintained, afterwards, by Le Clerc ; and revived, in our own days, in a modified form, by Michaelis and some of the other divines of Germany, from whom Professor Moses Stuart, of Andover, U. S., appears to have borrowed them." (p. 13-14)

"Dr. Lee, the learned Professor of Arabic in the University of Cambridge, I may fairly rank among this class of theologians. To him, evidently, do the Salemites owe much of what is valuable—almost all, indeed, that appears to carry with it any weight—an their views and writings. Only let this, with regard to the Doctor, be observed, that in his admirable " Dissertation on Prophecy," contained in the volume entitled "Six Sermons," &c., published by him, at London, in 1830, he makes admissions respecting instances of the fulfilment of prophecy, subsequently to the destruction of Jerusalem, which, notwithstanding the ingenuity of his attempts to account for them, seem to be inconsistent with, and destructive of his general theory."  (p. 14-15)
 

 

 

   

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