• Welcome to Christian Forums
  1. Welcome to Christian Forums, a forum to discuss Christianity in a friendly surrounding.

    Your voice is missing! You will need to register to be able to join in fellowship with Christians all over the world.

    We hope to see you as a part of our community soon and God Bless!

  2. The forums in the Christian Congregations category are now open only to Christian members. Please review our current Faith Groups list for information on which faith groups are considered to be Christian faiths. Christian members please remember to read the Statement of Purpose threads for each forum within Christian Congregations before posting in the forum.
  3. Please note there is a new rule regarding the posting of videos. It reads, "Post a summary of the videos you post . An exception can be made for music videos.". Unless you are simply sharing music, please post a summary, or the gist, of the video you wish to share.
  4. There have been some changes in the Life Stages section involving the following forums: Roaring 20s, Terrific Thirties, Fabulous Forties, and Golden Eagles. They are changed to Gen Z, Millennials, Gen X, and Golden Eagles will have a slight change.
  5. CF Staff, Angels and Ambassadors; ask that you join us in praying for the world in this difficult time, asking our Holy Father to stop the spread of the virus, and for healing of all affected.

When did the Christian Interpretation of the Abomination of Desolation split from the Jewish one?

Discussion in 'Christian History' started by mnphysicist, May 24, 2019.

  1. mnphysicist

    mnphysicist Have Courage to Trust God!

    United States
    Was this a result of replacement theology and/or a form of superseccionism and when did it occur?

    If we consider that Jesus attended the feast of dedication in John 10:22-23 which directly comes from Jewish teachings 1 Macc 4:52-59; 2 Macc 10:5 where worship was restored after Antiochus put a Zeus in the temple (Abomination of Desolation according to every Rabbi I've talked to wrt Daniel 11:31-32 ) it doesn't seem like it would have been divergent in that time.

    And yet, by the time we get to Calvin, he is adamant that the Jews were in error with their teachings on this. I can sort of see his logic, but it also seems that if the practice orignated with Jewish folks, shouldn't they have the ultimate say in this.
    We teamed up with Faith Counseling. Can they help you today?
  2. Michael Collum

    Michael Collum Everything began with a voice, use yours Supporter

    Christian Seeker
    There's this passage about not believing in Jewish fables which probably influenced the later interpretation.
  3. Michael Collum

    Michael Collum Everything began with a voice, use yours Supporter

    Christian Seeker
    Also, I am not able to tell what the Christian idea is, and the Jewish idea is from the post.

    My perception of the Christian idea is a meddley of theologies that do not agree, like with a lot of the end time topics.
  4. Hidden In Him

    Hidden In Him Well-Known Member Supporter

    It's Supersessionism, LoL.

    Not only did it "originate" with the Jews, but Replacement theology makes the Lord's communication to the Jews on this subject out to be utterly incomprehensible to them, as if He was talking right passed them to us, which is a position I find too self-absorbed and dismissive, as if the Jews meant nothing to Him, not just now but even then.

    As to exactly where and when the alternate interpretations originated I have no idea, but it would be an interesting study.

    Blessings in Christ.
  5. Peter J Barban

    Peter J Barban Well-Known Member

    I don't know exactly when this happened, but the Gospels certainly made a difference with verses such as:

    Matthew 24:15 (NIV)
    15 “So when you see standing in the holy place ‘the abomination that causes desolation, ’spoken of through the prophet Daniel—let the reader understand—

    This makes it clear that the abomination of Daniel is still a future event.
  6. tz620q

    tz620q Regular Member Supporter

    I think his point is that to the Jews the abomination of desolation would occur when the temple was desecrated again as it had been by Antiochus Epiphanes. Remember that to the Jews of this time the temple was the center of their worship and the center of God's presence on this earth. God had promised to be with them and this was the place. If the temple was desecrated, would God's Chosen people remain His or would the promise be removed. Ringed by powerful enemies, the only real protection that the Jews had was through this promise. The Roman desecration of the temple in AD 70 would have been seen as this abomination. This event was what led to the final split of "The Way" into a separate Christian religion and the obliteration of the OT Jewish worship and finally an embrace of a Pharisaic Jewish religion centered around the synagogue, not the temple.
  7. ~Anastasia~

    ~Anastasia~ † Handmaid of God † CF Senior Ambassador Supporter

    United States
    Eastern Orthodox
    If you're talking about prophecy according to Daniel as opposed to prophecy according to Jesus (or even if you're not really) ...

    It is not at all uncommon for prophecy to be fulfilled in "layers" or in a way in history that is a type or shadow of something that happens again in a greater way later, or still to come in the future. So sometimes two or more interpretations of prophecy can still be correct, even if they disagree.

    I'm not even aware of the Zeus thing. When did this happen? If it was before Jesus' time, then clearly Christians need to have a different/additional understanding from the time before the crucifixion, since Jesus referenced it Himself.

    (ETA somehow I missed a few of the previous posts and I see this was already brought up :) )
  8. Brian Mcnamee

    Brian Mcnamee Well-Known Member

    Hi good question and some prophecies have layers to them and the Jewish idea was for sure an abomination in the temple. If you look at Dan 9 the stopping of the daily sacrifice is supposed to happen in the middle of the 70th week of Daniel. It speaks of a prince who shall come. So until Jesus declared that the abomination of desolation was still a future event and to watch for it the old idea that antichios had committed had stood. Jesus predicted the destruction of Jerusalem and warned when you see it being surrounded know its destruction is near and to flee. He also warned about the end of the age when you see the abmination of desolation that Daniel spoke of standing where it should not be to flee. Now this is where the rubber meets the road because Jesus also predicted the destruction of the temple which occurred in 70AD. Some will say that Nero was the one who Jesus was talking about. The futurist view sees a 3rd temple to come where this will take place and this ties in the antichrist,
    2 thess 2 1 Now, brethren, concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our gathering together to Him, we ask you, 2 not to be soon shaken in mind or troubled, either by spirit or by word or by letter, as if from us, as though the day of Christ[fn] had come. 3 Let no one deceive you by any means; for that Day will not come unless the falling away comes first, and the man of sin[fn] is revealed, the son of perdition, 4 who opposes and exalts himself above all that is called God or that is worshiped, so that he sits as God[fn] in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God. 8 And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord will consume with the breath of His mouth and destroy with the brightness of His coming. 9 The coming of the lawless one is according to the working of Satan, with all power, signs, and lying wonders, 10 and with all unrighteous deception among those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth, that they might be saved. 11 And for this reason God will send them strong delusion, that they should believe the lie, 12 that they all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness.
    Now if we think this over the lawless one is destroyed at the coming of the LORD. Note also that he deceived them and they believed the lie. This does not fit with 70AD. In Dan 7 we see the day the kingdom of God comes to earth and a very similar person is described who is pompous and has dominion and is persecuting the saints. This one is destroyed and given to the flame when the son of man described as the glorified Jesus comes and this is when the kingdom that has no end begins. If we link this with Rev 13 and 20 we see the beast is given authority for 42 month over every tribe tongue kindred and nation. he also is persecuting the saints and is also destroyed at the coming of the Lord and given to the flame. Also in Dan 7 the pompous one has a times times and half a time or 1+2+1/2 for 3 1/2 which in months is 42 which is the middle of the week of 7 years. Dan 9 speaks of teh middle of the week too when the sacrifice is stopped.
    The evidence that it is still future is that Israel is a nation and they have prepared everything to resume the daily sacrifices. Hosea 3 notes that the return of the kingdom is linked with the return of the sacrifice after many days of having neither. This again does not fit as they had the sacrifice up until then. 4 For the children of Israel shall abide many days without king or prince, without sacrifice or sacred pillar, without ephod or teraphim. 5 Afterward the children of Israel shall return and seek the LORD their God and David their king. They shall fear the LORD and His goodness in the latter days.
  9. The Righterzpen

    The Righterzpen Jesus is my Shield in any Desert or Storm

    United States
    To answer the OP question; we have to dig through history a little bit.

    First off, we have to understand that the current Jewish interpretation of "the abomination that makes desolate" may not be the same as they thought it was in the 1st century.

    Why is this a possibility to be considered?

    Between the return from Babylon and 70 AD, we have roughly 3 schools of Jewish thought. There were the Pharisees, the Sadducees, doctors of the law and other various groups. The Essenes are another example mentioned by secular Roman historians, although not mentioned in the Scripture that I'm aware of. They were said to be living alone the Dead Sea; (thus believed to be the "keeper" / "stowing" of the Dead Sea Scrolls - which is under debate now. Archeologists don't think Qumran was a place that was permanently habituated long term.) Some scholars believe the Essenes were a further splinter of the Sadducees.

    So there is a lot of information that's lost to history today. And this is because, when the temple was destroyed in 70 AD; what became what is now known today as Rabbinic Judaism, became the predominate interpretation of all previous Jewish beliefs and lore that are extra-Biblical. So today, all of what occurred between the Babylonian captivity and 2019, has been filtered through Rabbinic traditions and Rabbinic Judaism is an offshoot of the Pharisees.

    So, all these other groups that existed between the Babylonian captivity and the destruction of the temple in 70 AD; what they thought "the abomination of desolation" was? We don't know.

    The Reformation:

    Now the next big "eschatological compilation of beliefs" (shall we call it) came out of the reformation. Christian interpretations of (let's say Daniel and Revelation) had not "hit" the "theological expiatory writing scene" really until we get to the Reformation.

    The reason for this I think has to do with semantics of inventions like the printing press, the proliferation of the concept of education for the masses and other technological and social type factors that played into the development of western civilization. Prior to the Industrial Revolution; literature and who had access to books (along with the ability to read them) was comparatively a very small segment of the population.

    Now obviously back in antiquity there was more of a mass degree of basic rudimentary literacy, as the Persians, Greeks and Romans did commonly use written language in public discourse. Obviously there had been a ginormous library in Alexandria! Yet even in those societies, the time for your common person to just sit down and read books did not exist.

    So we get to the reformation and the first interpretation to come out of the Protestants was that the Roman Catholic Church was "Babylon the Mother of Harlots". Out of that sprung all these other passages (abomination of desolation) being connected to the RCC.

    Well the Roman Catholic Church than countered it's presentation of interpretation of these passages by saying for example - the one head on the beast in Revelation was Nero. And the body of interpratation that came out of that, which we call Preterism today; primarily came out of the RCC.


    Now it isn't until we get to about the middle of the 19th century that another interpretation of eschatology begins to emerge that we today call Dispensationalism. The spread of this interpretation primarily came out of Scofield's Reference Bible. This interpretation is heavily Zionistic and the reason for that is because this era saw the birth of Zionism.

    The advent of Zionism was the result of pressure European rabbis felt to "keep Jews together" on account of several social factors that were causing Jews in Europe to abandon Judaism. One factor was that the latter half of the 18th century and through the 19th century, saw a lot of religious revivals in both North America and Northern Europe. So thus Jews who lived in the greater Northern European and North American society were converting to Christianity in quite large numbers. Now interestingly this was apparently in such large numbers that the Human Genome Project has born out that great numbers of people of European ethnicity have Ashkenazi DNA.

    The other factor in mass conversions of Jews to Christianity came out of Darwinian ideas of "survival of the fittest". In the age of colonialism; the prevailing belief was that the culture with the wealth and power was the "fittest to survive"; and so the whole sail conversion of all things related to that culture became the prevailing belief of mass numbers of people around the globe. This is still happening today; except we call it "westernization".

    Now in general this isn't "bad" because what group of people doesn't want basics like sewers, running water, electricity, cleaner cities, a healthier population, technology, the ability to connect to other people around the world, the ability to share ideas, the ability to communicate to ban together to force political and economic change etc. So obviously all of this has it's upsides and downsides.

    And of course the proliferation of access to technology which brings access to information includes all sorts of variants of Christian thought, ideas and theologies.

    So to answer the most basic question raised in the OP about "when did the split happen"; there isn't really a "when". It happened over the course of centuries and it was thus further proliferated by social factors such as education, the advent of the Internet etc.

    Now if you were to go back 75 years and ask African Christians, or Middle-Eastern Christians, Indian Christians or Christians in the Far East what their understanding of "abomination of desolation" meant as it related to Jewish interpretation, you'd get a very different answer. Those areas of the world (particularly the Middle-East and Africa) are quite anti-Zionistic and most Arab / African Christians find very little use in Jewish interpretations of the Scripture.

    Replacement theology:

    Now here's another misnomer of sorts. In the working out of God's eternal redemption plan; none of His elect (i.e. those who come to trust in Christ) have EVER been replaced by anyone! Jews and gentiles regardless of what era they lived (pre-cross or post Pentecost) have always and never ceased to be the Israel of God.

    The church didn't "replace" Israel. The Church and Israel, eternally speaking are the same entity. The only difference in definition, is by which perspective one is viewing this through.

    Christ was the promised seed of Abraham. Christ was the Mediator of the Old Covenant. Christ was the Prophet that was to come after Moses. All of the sum of what "Israel" is, is found in Him because He was the propitiation for sin. But He wasn't just the payment for Jews who'd be atoned for, He was the payment for all who'd be atoned for. All of God's true "Israel" is found in Christ.

    By the same token; Christ's "body" (the Church) stretches back to Adam and Eve. All of whom He'd purchased with His blood are part of His body; which again is not determined upon which time, nation or geographical area they lived in.

    So again, the church didn't "replace" Israel. Through the expanse of linear time, in the great schema of God's redemption plan; "Israel" and "the Church" are the same entity.

    Abomination of Desolation:

    So what exactly is that?

    Here is another resource to investigate should one care to do so: (the "abomination that causes desolate" is covered in this study.

    Bible Study - END TIMES? Chapter 1: Introduction, a bible fanfic | FanFiction
    Last edited: May 24, 2019
  10. mnphysicist

    mnphysicist Have Courage to Trust God!

    United States
    Thats the part I don't get... if was important enough for Jesus to attend the feast of dedication in Jerusalem, then why on earth are we 20th century Christian's so dismissive of Jewish folks and their teachings?

    This seems to make the most sense. We have the Jewish teachings of 168BC, and 70AD, and possibly something in the future depending upon how much hoop jumping one is willing to engage in.

    This seems really dismissive of Jewish oral tradition... and if we dismiss that, then aren't we likewise opening the door to dismissing much of the scriptures? And what about 1 and 2 Maccabees, they are part of the canon, or were for the entirety of Christian world up until Luther.

    That being said, the history you provided is really awesome and super helpful, albeit it opens the door to even more questions for me to ponder!
  11. The Righterzpen

    The Righterzpen Jesus is my Shield in any Desert or Storm

    United States
    Well the challenge with "oral tradition" is that you don't really know what it was until it's written down. I know that's sounds rather oxymoronical; but it presents real issues for historians, because you can't accurately pinpoint the timing or accuracy of something until it's written down.

    For example, there's a lot of Native American oral tradition that allegedly goes back centuries before Europeans ever came along. The only problem with this is; that many elements of this lore (especially in the east coast tribes) comes out of colonial European societies; such as "running the gauntlet".

    "Running the gauntlet" was a military disciplinary measure used by the British army, which has its origins in Ancient Rome. The Romans used the same terminology; so obviously it's more likely the British got the idea and its terminology from the Romans, not the Native Americans; seeing how colonial armies were modeled off the Roman army.

    Another of the oral traditions of our local tribes; (I live in western NY) has to do with tools and weapons they invented. Now there is no doubt they invented these weapons and tools; yet in order to fashion them in the manner they are said to be "traditionally invented"; requires the ability to forge iron. Native Americans did not have that knowledge until the Europeans came. They could forge things in gold and sliver; but not iron. Now they did possess iron "ball hammers"; but those were constructed out of meteorites.

    So, here is where the real challenge comes in historically and this is why the Scripture instructs us to interpret it by comparing it to itself, not someone's cultural tradition. (Isaiah 28)

    So if you understand that you get Spiritual truth by comparing the Scripture to itself; than you don't run the risk of dismissing Scripture by setting aside the cultural interpretations thereof.

    Now it is useful to know some if this historical information; because if you do know it, certain details of the Scripture make more sense.

    (Warning - here comes another history lesson and my apologies for it being so long - LOL)

    For example: "Before the cock crows twice, you'll deny me 3 times." That's often interpreted as a chicken; but it wasn't a literal chicken.

    Soldiers watches were divided up by times of the day and night and the time between 3 and 6 AM was "the crowing of the cock" or "cock watch". The "cock crowing" was two trumpet blasts that signaled to soldiers when the start and end of watch was. The trumpet would blow in one direction and then roughly 5 to 10 minutes later, blow in the other. The first blast was to signal to soldiers coming on watch that they needed to get to their post and you better be there by the second blast. The soldiers leaving watch were released at that point. So the "crowing of the cock" was roughly 3 AM.

    So Peter denies Jesus at roughly 3 AM. Ironically, jump over 2 days and the resurrection likely happened at 3 AM. There were more than 2 soldiers at the tomb when it happened, and we can figure this out by plural use of language when it speaks about some being paid off; while other's apparently maintained what they'd seen. And it's not likely there would have been more than 2 soldiers posted to the tomb on a watch. So the likelihood that the resurrection happened about 3 AM is pretty high. We know it happened before the sun came up.

    The resurrection probably spread around the Antonia fortress before it spread around the rest of Jerusalem; and there were about 5000 soldiers stationed on that base.

    The Antonia fortress is also what many (probably most) people today call "the temple mount". The Dome of the Rock Mosque does not sit where the temple was. The temple was south of the fortress in the City of David and there is nothing left today of the temple.

    Archeologists have found portions of the "basement floor" of the temple where there are channels carved into the stone where the blood from the sacrifices would have drained off into the "run off" of the Gihon spring; but no-one claims publicly to know what that is; because declaring that this is actually where the temple was, would "upset the political applecart" too much. Too many traditions and thus modern rabbis as well as Zionist Christians have declared that the Dome of the Rock is where the temple "should be rebuilt". The "wailing wall" which is said to be one of the walls of the temple is actually the western wall of the fort. We also have records of this from antiquity. Josephus said that the only structure left standing in Jerusalem at the end of the siege was this fort. Josephus called it "an abomination".

    The Temple, 30 AD and John the Baptist:

    So also, what people think is the "foundation stone" (thought to be of the temple, which is inside the Dome of the Rock Mosque someplace) is a natural rock feature of the land and it is said by early Christian custom to be part of what Scripture calls "the pavement", which was part of the Praetorium in the Antonia Fortress. This is where Pilate would have heard the charges against Jesus and also where the crowds would have told Pilate to crucify Jesus. This rock feature was called "the judgment stone" by the Romans.

    Now the prison house that held Barabbas and the other thieves would have also been inside this Roman fort. The southern steps of the fort butted up to the north end of the "court of the gentiles" of the temple.

    On the north end of the temple (across the court of the gentiles) was a structure called "the hewn stone chamber" which was where the Sanhedrin was suppose to meet to hold trials. They were suppose to hold trials in this area "in front of" the north side of the temple so God could "oversee" their judiciary processes. The north end of this "chamber of hewn stone" opened into the court of the gentiles and the southern door opened into the "court of the priests" inside the temple.

    Directly east of this, as the southern wall that separated the court of the gentiles from the court of the Jews (Jews south of the wall, gentiles north of the wall) were structures where the animals to be purchased for sacrifices were stored. The "money changers" would have originally been here also. This was also probably where "the tower of Siloam" was. This tower housed birds to be sacrificed. Attached to this tower was some sort of walkway which transversed the court of the gentiles. This walkway collapsed and killed a bunch of people, sometime before the Passover that Jesus was arrested. This event is recorded in Scripture and I'll explain how this fits together in a minute.

    Now interestingly in 30 AD there was a massive earthquake in Turkey. We have historical record of this. This earthquake did affect Jerusalem and though it didn't do much structural damage, it did damage this "chamber of hewn stone". Both Josephus and the Talmud talk about this earthquake as having "evicted" the Sanhedrin from this chamber. Also the Talmud states this quake caused the inner doors of the temple to open and they couldn't ever really get them properly closed again. These doors were right behind the veil of the temple.

    Now this quake obviously damaged the north wall of the complex and so the money changers were moved north into the court of the gentiles on the other side of this wall. Apparently though, they were still using the tower of Siloam to house sacrificial birds. Luke 13:1-5 talks about this. It's a very brief blurb and it's only a couple of sentences.

    The incident of this tower falling is coupled together with another incident described as Pilate sending soldiers into the temple after a bunch of Galileans where as the Scripture says "who's blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices".

    Now if you go back into the historical records of the Greeks as well as the Old Testament, Jews throughout history have been accused of as well as guilty of performing human sacrifices. There are records of secular court cases throughout Europe that go back centuries of such things; as well as this is claimed by some to be still going on today.

    Matter of fact, according to the Greeks side of the story of the Maccabees's revolt; this is why the Greek king (Antiochus VI) forbid Jewish religious customs. There's a story in an anthology by a Greek historian that records the king going into the Jewish temple and finding a Greek merchant who'd been abducted from some city and was being held captive there. As soon as this merchant saw the king, he ran up to him and fell at his feet and pleaded for his life. As the story goes, this merchant had been held captive there for nearly a year and one of the servants that brought him food, had told him that they intended to use him as a sacrifice in a vow the Jews had made among themselves to "hate the Greeks forever".

    So having this history that the Romans were aware of, coming from the Greeks; we can surmise by the context of what is said in Scripture as to why Pilate sent soldiers into the temple after these people.

    So this event is coupled to this other event of the tower of Siloam falling on people in the court of the gentiles. And note what Jesus says. You suppose these Galileans were sinners above all Galileans for forbearing such things. I tell you that unless you repent, you will all likewise perish. Interesting condemnation to come out of Jesus's mouth if these people were just innocent victims of senseless Roman brutality!

    Back to John, Jesus and Herod the Great:

    Now, jumping back to 30 AD and this earthquake. I believe the Talmud said it was alleged to have happened during Passover. The secular record (as it related to the cities in Turkey that were destroyed) only said "spring of the year".

    John the Baptist appears on the scene in summer of 29 AD at the commencement of the 15th year of Tiberius Caesar. Now we actually have some "confirmation" from the Romans as to when John most likely began preaching. Now Tiberius's reign actually began in July of 14 AD after Augustus died; but he wasn't "officially installed" until September of that year. Jump ahead 15 years and John probably began preaching in July of 29 AD. (As Scripture declares at the the commencement of Tiberius's 15th year.) Yet, Low and behold in September there is a solar eclipse which marks the commencement of Tiberius's "official reign" of his 15th year. We know this because the Romans minted a coin that came out in 30 AD.

    Now what's the significance of this coin? Apparently, the Jewish leaders also felt this solar eclipse was something to take note of, because suddenly they are coming down from Jerusalem to see John who's baptizing people in the Jordan river and telling the nation to repent. What's interesting about this Roman coin; is that it has Tiberius "in eclipse" on the front of it AND.... the Jewish temple on the back! Now aint THAT a fascinating piece of history!

    This solar eclipse and the leaders of the nation coming down to see John the Baptist by the Jordan, would have occurred about the time of the feast of tabernacles. Jesus was most likely the last person John baptized. Jesus is immediately driven by the Spirit into the wilderness and the leaders arrest John.

    The birth of Christ and what the leaders already knew:

    Now back up almost 40 years to about 8 BC. Herod the Great had finished the "rebuild" of the temple and it "opened for business" being rededicated that year. The first major feast being conducted in this brand new temple was probably Passover. (This was actually the 3rd temple because Herod had actually torn down and reconstructed the entire temple from the days of Ezra.)

    What happens in Passover of 8 BC? Low and behold - An angel comes to the father of John the Baptist! John is conceived probably about July of that year. Jesus is conceived round about December of that year. John is born about the time of Passover of 7 BC. Jesus is born about the time of Feast of Tabernacles of 7BC.

    Two years pass, the Magi show up in Jerusalem about 5 BC, probably in the fall. And it aint just a couple of guys on a camel. We're talking caravans of people. There were probably more than one set of Magi that were coming from different directions. We can deduce this from language in the Bible where some say "we come from the east" and others say "we saw his star in the east". One set was coming from the direction of India, another from Africa and maybe the 3rd from Europe. Tradition assumes there are 3 kings because there are 3 gifts. (Fair enough.) The Scripture says Herod was disturbed by this as was all of Jerusalem.

    So the Magi go find Jesus and an angel tells Jospeh to take Jesus and Mary into Egypt, while the Magi all go home in different directions and never come back to Herod. Herod become incensed and kills all the boys 2 and under in Jerusalem. (This hearkens back to Moses being hid in a basket and "found" by Pharaoh's daughter.)

    Now interestingly, historical record tells us that in 5 BC there was a comet that passed earth that was quite visible from Jerusalem. The ancients saw comets as bad omens. So here, this comet comes, these magi show up saying: "the King of the Jews is born" and Herod is like - I'm in deep .... and this is probably part of the imputes that causes him to kill these babies in Bethlehem.

    Historical record tells us that Herod the Great dies suddenly in February of 4 BC. An angel comes to Joseph and tells him to go back to Judea.

    Now jump over to the book of Daniel. There's two sets of numbers in Daniel 8 and 12 (I believe they are). one is 1290 days. The other is 2300 days. Well, it's 1290 days from the angel appearing to John's father to the Magi and it's 2300 days from the angle appearing to John's father to Jesus returning from Egypt.

    So jump ahead again some nearly 40 years and here's John preaching in the wilderness and who's on the throne than Herod the Great's son! Gee guys, doesn't this look familiar!

    So there's your history lesson for today - and does this not bring reason to pause concerning alleged rabbinic oral traditions?

    Next - I'll address your question about the books of Maccabees and what the Protestants call "the Apocrypha".
  12. The Righterzpen

    The Righterzpen Jesus is my Shield in any Desert or Storm

    United States
    Now as for your question about Maccabees and what the cannon contained.

    Another history lesson here: LOL

    The Scripture was translated into Latin about 400 AD. That translation became known as the Latin Vulgate. It was translated by a monk named Jerome after Constantine had legalized Christianity and the Latin Vulgate was written primarily for the Roman Catholic Church.

    Now Jerome lived in Jerusalem and was familiar with the Rabbinic traditions. He had:
    Hebrew Old Testament,
    Alexandrian Greek New Testament,
    The Greek Septuagint (that is the Greek translation of the Old Testament, which was "in process" while Jesus was on earth. Paul actually quotes the Septuagint in places.)
    New Testament in Syriac Egyptian,
    Aramaic New Testament
    (and I believe Arabic New Testament - which Arabic and Aramaic are linguistic cousins.)

    These begin to form the core of what would later be called "the received texts"; by the time we get post Reformation and are translating the Bible into German, French and English.

    The first vernacular "northern" European language the Scripture was translated into was French. (probably because it's closer to Latin than the Germanic language group is) The next was German and then English. Before we get to the King James though, we have the Bishops Bible and the Tyndale Bible, which are both "combo" English / German translations. English is primarily a Germanic language and this is why we have these "prototype" English translations.

    So we take all these and put them together and this is what becomes known as "the Received Texts". Now it's called that because this is the cannon that has been passed down (received) through the various "corporate manifestations" of the church.

    The "Received Text" differs in some places from what we call "the Critical Texts". Now the "Critical Texts" are textural variants that began to appear starting in the late 19th century through the 20th century. Most of these came to be known because of archeology. (This is where we get the "Gnostic Gospels" from.) Yet most of these texts are Byzantine in nature and are not as old as the Alexandrian texts.

    So, where did Maccabees come from and why is it in the Roman Catholic Bible and not in the Protestant Bible?

    Maccabees is part of a group of Jewish writings, some of which, at least are claimed to have came out of the Babylonian captivity. (Remember the issues I mentioned earlier about oral traditions and verifiable historical fact.) They were written between the time the Old Testament was completed and John the Baptist came on the scene. This body of Jewish literary writings became known as the Apocrypha.

    Now the Apocrypha has about 30 books total in it. The RCC only has about 14 or 15 of these 30 books. The Eastern Orthodox Church has all 30. This body of Jewish lore is written in Greek and Latin. None of the Apocrypha is written in Hebrew, nor is it in the Hebrew cannon. The Apocrypha was not in the Old Testament Jesus had.

    Matter of fact, there are only 3 books from the Apocrypha that are in the Dead Sea Scrolls; and Maccabees are not any of them. (Ben Sira, Tobit, Epistle of Jeremiah) Which this begs the question of the real age of all the Apocrypha except these 3 known books; seeing how we know the Dead Sea Scrolls all date before 70 AD.

    Josephus does mention the existence of the Apocrypha; but to my knowledge does not name all of the books. He does mention Maccabees though, so we know that existed by 100 AD.

    Some of the Apocrypha books are written in Latin, which probably post dates them past the end of the 1st Century; at least past the penning of the New Testament. The entire New Testament was written in Greek.

    Now Constantine legalizes Christianity in about 315 AD and by 325 AD kicks all the rabbis out of Jerusalem. They go east to Babylon and this is where they complete the Talmud. The Jerusalem Talmud was written in Western Aramaic and the Babylonian Talmud was written in Eastern Aramaic.

    The Old Testament contains Hebrew and some Chaldean words and phrases. There is some "early Aramaic" in Daniel and Ezra as phrases from the Persian Empire are borrowed in the writing of these books.

    Aramaic is kind of a mishmash language, sort of like English. It's a combination of Hebrew, Syriac and Phoenician and uses the Phoenician alphabet. It was taken up as a secondary language in the Babylonian Empire and was used by merchants. It became more of a common vernacular for a short while in the Persian Empire until Alexander the Great came along. At that point, the predominant official language became Greek.

    So the Old Testament is translated into Greek. The New Testament is written in Greek. The Talmud is written in Aramaic and the earliest books of the Apocrypha are written in Greek and the latter in Latin.

    Back to the monk Jerome:

    So Jerome takes all this stuff and translates it all into Latin. He binds the Apocrypha together in a separate book and tells the RCC authorities that these are secular Jewish writings. The Jews don't recognize them as part of Hebrew Scripture cannon. Jerome states he does not believe they are part of Scripture cannon either, but if you want to read them; here they are.

    So the question within the RCC of where, what, or if the Apocrypha has any bearing in Scripture cannon kicks around until the Protestant Reformation. Once the Protestants declare the Apocrypha is not part of the Scripture cannon; the RCC canonizes it! (So, make what you want out of that decision!)

    Now this answers the historical questions about the Apocrypha as it relates to the RCC and the Protestant Reformation. It doesn't address the Eastern Orthodox views of the Apocrypha. Their means / views of canonizing or not canonizing things is "fuzzier" than Rome's was. The RCC passed decrees to say "X is in" or "Y is not"; whereas the Eastern Orthodox churches didn't really do that. Their inclusions or exclusions of things more grew up around local traditions than rulings passed by councils. Much of the Eastern Orthodox church doesn't recognize the book of Revelation as "cannon"; which is interesting.

    I'd have to do more research on the Eastern Orthodox though, because I don't know as much about that as I know about the RCC or Protestant traditions.
    Last edited: May 25, 2019
  13. ~Anastasia~

    ~Anastasia~ † Handmaid of God † CF Senior Ambassador Supporter

    United States
    Eastern Orthodox
    I think this is the most likely answer.

    Very often the fulfillment of prophecy is only recognized in hindsight too. But I guess that won't be the case for "end of the age" stuff.