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Did the gentile times begin in 607 BCE or 70 CE?

Discussion in 'Bible Prophecy' started by marshroanoke, Aug 2, 2017.

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    marshroanoke

    marshroanoke Member

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    Luke 21:24 says that they "will fall by the edge of the sword and Jerusalem will be trampled on by the nations until the appointed times of the nations are fulfilled."

    However, the WT promotes the idea that Jerusalem is trampled on from 607 BCE to 1914 CE. If that is true, why didn't Jesus Christ use the proper tense in this scripture? At the time of Jesus Christ saying that, Jerusalem would've already been trampled for hundreds of years. Both Aramaic and koine Greek have tenses that cover ongoing action as opposed to future action. For example, shouldn't Jesus have said they "are falling by the edge of the sword and Jerusalem is being trampled on by the nations until the appointed times of the nations are fulfilled"?
     
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    Earthbound

    Earthbound New Member

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    Christian greetings, marshroanoke,

    It might be helpful if you could provide a couple examples you feel best illustrate the Watchtower organization's published opinion regarding this so everyone is on the same page (no pun intended).

    ~~Earthbound
     
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    marshroanoke

    marshroanoke Member

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    Sure thing. I just assumed most people on here are very familiar with our religion's official understanding of 1914 and the seven times.

    it-1 pp. 132-135

    "After discussing the destruction due to come upon the city of Jerusalem, Jesus made the statement: “And Jerusalem will be trampled on by the nations, until the appointed times of the nations [“times of the Gentiles,” KJ, RS] are fulfilled.” (Lu 21:24) The period indicated by the expression “appointed times of the nations [Gr., kai·roiʹ e·thnonʹ]” has occasioned considerable discussion as to its meaning and implication."

    "The ‘trampling’ on that kingdom of the dynasty of Davidic rulers did not begin with the Roman devastation of the city of Jerusalem in 70 C.E. It began centuries earlier with the Babylonian overthrow of that dynasty in 607 B.C.E. when Nebuchadnezzar destroyed Jerusalem and took captive the dethroned king Zedekiah and the land was left desolate. (2Ki 25:1-26; see CHRONOLOGY.) This accorded with the prophetic words directed to Zedekiah at Ezekiel 21:25-27, namely: “Remove the turban, and lift off the crown. This will not be the same. . . . A ruin, a ruin, a ruin I shall make it. As for this also, it will certainly become no one’s until he comes who has the legal right, and I must give it to him.” The one who has “the legal right” to the Davidic crown lost by Zedekiah is demonstrated in the Christian Greek Scriptures to be Christ Jesus, of whom the angel, announcing his future birth, said: “Jehovah God will give him the throne of David his father, and he will rule as king over the house of Jacob forever, and there will be no end of his kingdom.”—Lu 1:32, 33."
     
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    Earthbound

    Earthbound New Member

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    I am, but I've also been away for a long, long time, and changes could certainly have taken place in the meantime, so I thought I would just ask for some clarification. ;)

    Does the Watchtower organization's leadership offer an explanation for how the desolation following King Zedekiah's reign ("a ruin, a ruin, a ruin I shall make it") led to the rebuilding of the Temple which was still underway in Jesus' day, the restoration of sacrificial worship resumed at the Temple, and the Herods arose to serve as kings of Judea (and the Jews)? The state of Jerusalem was definitely not "a ruin, a ruin, a ruin" in the years leading up to 70CE, as far as I know-- in fact, it was quite the opposite-- so re-established that even Jesus' own disciples couldn't conceive of anything happening to the Temple and Jerusalem again. :eek:

    ~~Earthbound
     
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    marshroanoke

    marshroanoke Member

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    According to the WT Society, Jerusalem's conquering by Babylon was when Gentile powers began dominating the earth. The rebuilding of the temple and restoration of true worship is apparently irrelevant and they were still being "trampled by the nations"?

    "With Jerusalem’s fall in 607 B.C.E. the Gentile powers exercised domination over the entire earth. The Davidic dynasty and rule suffered interruption, and so Jerusalem, or what it stood for, would continue to be “trampled on” as long as God’s kingdom, as functioning through David’s house, was kept in a low, inoperative condition under the Gentile powers. Observing this connection with rulership Unger’s Bible Dictionary (1965, p. 398) comments: “Consequently Gentiles move on as ‘the nations’ to the end of their stewardship as earth rulers. The termination of this period will be the end of the ‘times of the Gentiles’ (Luke 21:24; Dan. 2:36-44).”—Compare Eze 17:12-21; also the description of Medo-Persia’s fall at Da 8:7, 20."
     
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    Earthbound

    Earthbound New Member

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    For the sake of full disclosure, I do not see the prophecies regarding Jerusalem
    Hmm. The Herodian Dynasty was, pretty much, representatives of Rome, and there appears to be a significant amount of historical evidence that Jesus wasn't put to death for his message, but rather out of fear that if the leaders of Israel didn't handle the situation, Rome would rain down its wrath on Jerusalem, and I imagine they were getting tired of having to stack the blocks back up centuries after centuries.

    So, if the Watchtower's position is that there hasn't been an independent king since King David, would they be right in saying that the Davidic rule was/is gone until Jesus assumed/s the throne?

    ~~Earthbound
     
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    Joshuastone7

    Joshuastone7 Administrator Staff Member

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    First we might ask, what is the WT talking about when it mentions "gentile times". Well let's start with Luk 21 where we read about the appointed times of the nations, when they trample Jerusalem.

    Luk 21:24 "And they will fall by the edge of the sword and be led captive into all the nations; and Jerusalem will be trampled on by the nations until the appointed times of the nations are fulfilled."

    Is this time period 7 times as read in Daniel 4? Well, Revelation 11 tells us the times of the nations is 42 months.

    Rev 11:2 "But as for the courtyard that is outside the temple sanctuary, leave it out and do not measure it, because it has been given to the nations, and they will trample the holy city underfoot for 42 months."

    So then how does the WT connect the "gentile times" to the fourth book of Daniel and the 7 times, instead of the 42 months?

    The next thing you might ask is, how does the WT connect the Davadic throne to the fourth book of Daniel? Is it because of Dan 4:17 where it states; "those alive will know the most high is ruler" and sighting proof the Davadic throne is represented in the tree of Daniel 4?

    Dan 4:17 "This is by the decree of watchers, and the request is by the word of the holy ones, so that people living may know that the Most High is Ruler in the kingdom of mankind"

    That is no connection what so ever, and nothing more then going beyond what is written.

    So can we say the "times of the nations" began in 607, 587, 70, etc? Can we say the times of the nations are meant in the story we read in Dan 4? Can we connect the Davadic throne to Dan 4? How about Eze 17 and the heaven high tree that falls, representing Egypt, why doesn't the WT also claim this chapter represents the Davadic throne? Can the times of the nations be shown to be any other time period then 42 months?
     
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    marshroanoke

    marshroanoke Member

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    @Joshuastone7 are you suggesting that the gentile times haven't begun yet? Sorry you ended with a bunch of questions.
     
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    Joshuastone7

    Joshuastone7 Administrator Staff Member

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    I believe it was fulfilled twice before, and will be again, one more time...
     
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    Joshuastone7

    Joshuastone7 Administrator Staff Member

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    Let me offer a little more information now that I have the time...

    When I say I believe the gentile times, or 42 months have been fulfilled before, in essence we are talking about Dan 12.

    Dan 12:7 "It will be for an appointed time, appointed times, and half a time."

    We understand from Rev 12 this time period is 1260 days, or 42 months, 42 months of 30 days equal 1260 days.

    Then we read of a time table that extends 30 days beyond the 1260;

    Dan 12:11 "And from the time that the constant feature has been removed and the disgusting thing that causes desolation has been put in place, there will be 1,290 days."

    What many fail to realize when studying this verse is the fact that the time period of 1290 days is the time between the constant feature being removed, and the disgusting thing being placed. The 1290 days begin the same day as the 1260 when the constant feature is removed and the "times of the nations" begins trampling the Holy City.

    We also read of a final day in this time period 45 days after the 1290 days, as each day count in Dan 12 run congruently, all beginning on the same day.

    Dan 12:12 "Happy is the one who keeps in expectation and who arrives at the 1,335 days!"

    So then, as I mentioned, I have come to believe this time period has been fulfilled twice before, and the first was that of the Maccabean revolt from 167-160 BCE. Although not part of the completed Bible we have today, the book of Maccabeans is held by majority as a record of actual history. In that revolt we see the sacrifices being ceased, a time for the nations to trample the city, and an idol being placed within the temple.

    I also believe this time period was fulfilled in the Jewish war of 66-70 CE. We find that the temple clerk Eleazar ben Hanania stopped sacrifices to the Roman people and Emperor which was the catalyst for the outbreak of war, and in turn represented the constant feature ceasing.

    (Wikipedia)

    "Eleazar ben Hanania (Hebrew: אלעזר בן חנניה‎‎; Ancient Greek: Ἐλεάζαρος υἱὸς Ἀνανία) was a Jewish leader during the Great Revolt of Judea. Eleazar was the son of the High Priest Hanania ben Nedebai and hence a political figure of the 1st century Judaea Province. Eleazar was the governor of the temple [1] at the outbreak of the rebellion in 66 CE and following the initial outbreak of the violence in Jerusalem convinced the priests of the Jewish Temple to stop service of sacrifice for the Emperor. The action, though largely symbolic, was one of the main milestones to bring a full-scale rebellion in Judea."

    Approximately 1290 days later Rome entered the temple to destroy it, fulfilling Jesus words in Mth 24, Luk 21 and Mrk 13.

    It has been my contention that these previous events are a measuring tool for us to understand the final fulfillment of these time periods in the time of the end.

    All love to the family of Christ...
     
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    Tsaphah

    Tsaphah Experienced Member

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    I was researching the letter of Jude where he writes; “Yet Michael the archangel, when contending with the devil he disputed about the body of Moses, durst not bring against him a railing accusation, but said the LORD ( Jehovah Zec 3:2 ) rebuke thee.” ( Jude 1:9 DNKJB ) [1]

    I always wondered where that particular quote came from. “And Jehovah said to Satan, Jehovah rebuke you, Satan! And, Jehovah who has chosen Jerusalem rebuke you! Is this not a brand plucked out of the fire?” (Zech 3:2 LITV)

    From these scriptures, I looked for the account in the (O.T. = Hebrew Scriptures) but could not find an account. The only reference to the death of Moses says: “And Moses went up from the plains of Moab unto the mountain of Nebo, to the top of Pisgah, that is over against Jericho...” ( Deut 34:1a DNKJB ) “So Moses the servant of Jehovah died there in the land of Moab, according to the word of Jehovah. And he buried him in a valley in the land of Moab, over against Beth-peor: but no man knoweth of his sepulchre unto this day. And Moses was an hundred and twenty years old when he died: his eye was not dim, nor his natural force abated.” ( Deut 34:5-7 DNKJB )

    This account made me wonder when this took place, so I looked for a good reference guide or time table. One thing I have found is that there are many different sources which conflict with each other. We are left with what archeologists have found with certain historical records of nations (gowy go'-ee). Their accounts/dates do not necessarily match bible dates.

    The attached time table is from: “A Handbook for Travellers in Syria and Palestine...” by John Murray, 1858. Introduction, part 3.— Chronological Table, pg. xxxiii. So, when did the “Gentile Times” begin? From the time they were taken captive to Babylon? (606-607 BC) Or, was it based from the time of the destruction of the temple in Jerusalem? (588 BC) Or, was the 70 years from the destruction of the temple to the rebuilding of the temple? (588 BC to 515 BC)

    According to the table, the 70 years started in 606 BC., and ran to 536 BC. (Ezra 1) An interesting statement is spoken by Cyrus: “Jehovah, the God of heaven hath given me all the kingdoms of the earth; and he hath charged me to build him an house at Jerusalem, which is in Judah.” (Ezra 1:2) Did Cyrus actually rule “all the kingdoms of the earth”? Did that include Africa, India, China, England, Russia, North and South America? Of course not. It only applied to nations that had direct contact with the nation of Israel, Jehovah’s representative people. It was a figurative “all the earth”.

    The 70 CE date is also a “guessed at” date. It all depends on who is writing the history and which Roman writer wrote the account hoping to not be displeasing to the ruler” of the day. Not pleasing?, to the arena for you! Pleasing?, have a gold ring! Or, in modern day Rome, “You're hired!”, or “You're fired!”

    [1] A commentary by Adam Clarke states:
    “Of this personage many things are spoken in the Jewish writings “Rabbi Judah Hakkodesh says: Wherever Michael is said to appear, the glory of the Divine Majesty is always to be understood.” Shemoth Rabba, sec. ii., fol. 104,3. So that it seems as if they considered Michael in some sort as we do the Messiah manifested in the flesh.”

    “Let it be observed that the word archangel is never found in the plural number in the sacred writings. There can be properly only one archangel, one chief or head of all the angelic host. Nor is the word devil, as applied to the great enemy of mankind, ever found in the plural; there can be but one monarch of all fallen spirits. Michael is this archangel, and head of all the angelic orders; the devil, great dragon, or Satan, is head of all the diabolic orders. When these two hosts are opposed to each other they are said to act under these two chiefs, as leaders; hence in Revelation 12:7, it is said: MICHAEL and his angels fought against the DRAGON and his angels. The word Michael seems to be compounded of mi, who, ke, like, and El, God; he who is like God; hence by this personage, in the Apocalypse, many understand the Lord Jesus.” (The Adam Clarke Commentary - Jude )

     
    Last edited: Aug 4, 2017
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    Tsaphah

    Tsaphah Experienced Member

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    DUH!!! I forgot to insert the timetable from “A Handbook for Travellers in Syria and Palestine...", so.... here it is.
     

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    Joshuastone7

    Joshuastone7 Administrator Staff Member

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    You make an interesting point, but with the information we have it appears that Jude 1:9 isn't really a quote, but merely added information to event surrounding Moses's death.

    I see no connection to Zech 3 other then the Archangel himself repeating the rebuke, but you have sparked my interest in the Archangel again, I'll have to see if I can dig anything up, for you know, he has been a point of debate for thousands of years...
     

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