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Now it is possible to point out several schemes, according to which this prediction was more or less accurately fulfilled. Perhaps the most satisfactory is, to take the five fallen kings to be those from Augustus to Nero inclusive, and to suppose the three claimants of empire, Galba, Otho, and Vitel- lius, not to be counted as actual emperors. Then the sixth will be Vespasian, the seventh the shortlived Titus, and the eighth Domitian, a tyrant and a persecutor, who was recognised both by Christians and Pagans as a revival of Nero. It is probable that this was the interpretation really given, if not by St Victorinus, at all events by the authorities he used and ought to have followed.
It harmonises with this, that in ch. xi. Jerusalem and the Temple there are apparently spoken of as still existing. It is true, we cannot be sure how far we are to understand such passages literally, how far " the Holy City " and " the Temple of God" are to be understood spiritually of their evangelical antitypes. But on the whole it appears simplest to take the literal sense, which appears to be the traditional one. There is even a respectable amount of traditional evidence for referring to the fall of Jerusalem the vision of the seven seals in ch. vi.: and this interpretation is supported by the close resemblance between the imagery there, and that in our Lord's prophecy, St Matt. xxiv. &c.
Thus on the question of date, as of authorship, we seem to find external evidence in conflict with internal. On the former question, we found the possibility of reconciliation between the two to be conditional on our decision on this point: on the other hand, it is a consideration in deciding this, what view will best harmonise all the evidence on all the questions affecting the book. And on the whole, the most probable view seems to be, that the Revelation was written by the Apostle John, at some time between the death of Nero in June A.D. 68, and the capture of Jerusalem in August A. D. 70: the Gospel and Epistles being much later works of the same author. " (The Revelation of S. John the Divine: With Notes and Introduction, xxxix)
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