This may sound like an academic concern, but it is actually quite relevant. Leithart, The Promise of His Appearing (2004 PDF) • J. Marshall, Parables of War: Reading John’s Jewish Apocalypse (Studies in Christianity and Judaism, 10; Waterloo, Ont.: 2001) ; `Who’s on the Throne?
This is because if Revelation was not written before 70AD, then it was likely not warning its audience about the Destruction of Jerusalem in 70AD.
” Revelation – “Behold, I am coming quickly.” Revelation – “Surely I am coming quickly.” εγγυς, engus means “at hand, near” Revelation 1:3 – “The time is near.” Revelation – “The time is at hand.” μελλει, mello, mellei means “about to, on the point or verge of” Revelation – “Write … • David Chilton, Paradise Restored (Tyler, TX: 1985); and The Days of Vengeance (Ft. • William Newton Clarke, An Outline of Christian Theology (New York: 1903). • Gary De Mar, End Times Fiction ; Last Days Madness: Obsession of the Modern Church • George Edmundson, The Church in Rome in the First Century (London: 1913 PDF). Fisher, The Beginnings of Christianity, with a View to the State of the Roman World at the Birth of Christ (New York: 1916), pp.
the things that are about to take place.” Revelation – “… is about to come upon the whole world.” Revelation says no less than six times at the beginning of the letter, and five times at the end of the letter, that ALL of its contents are to surely take place “SOON”. • Adela Yarbro Collins, The Combat Myth in the Book of Revelation (Harvard Theological Review; Harvard Dissertations in Religion, 9; (Missoula: 1976) ; Crisis and Catharsis: The Power of the Apocalypse (Philadelphia: 1984).
What more could John and Jesus possibly say to communicate when this prophecy was to be fulfilled?
They said it over eleven times in many different ways.
A plain reading of the time statements are KEY to understanding the meaning and nature of the whole message. Friesen, Twice Neokoros: Ephesus, Asia and the Cult of the Flavian Imperial Family (Religions in the Graeco-Roman World, 116; Leiden: 1993) ; Imperial Cults and the Apocalypse of John: Reading Revelation in the Ruins (New York: 2001) ; `Satan’s Throne, Imperial Cults and the Social Settings of Revelation’, JSNT 27 (2005): 351-73.
Berkof says that no one in church history has undertaken a thorough study of eschatology. The Reformers were fighting the salvation wars, thus, Calvin and Luther wrote a commentary on every book of the Bible but Revelation.
Luther didn’t even think Revelation should be in the Bible!
It is important to realize that this is a modern call imposed upon the text, not something arising from the text itself. The letter of Revelation itself says nothing about a shift in audience or subject matter. Chopping the letter up is an arbitrary idea forced onto the text.
It says nothing about a delay in timing or a change in intended audience. It is the result of a misunderstanding about when or why it was written and how it was fulfilled to its original audience. Reed (eds.), Heavenly Realms and Earthly Realities in Late Antique Religions (Cambridge: 2004): 123-41.