As the gospels and the book of Acts alone tell us Jesus lived in the first century some question if that is actually the truth.

The Book of Revelation claims that Jesus was crucified in a city it chooses to call Sodom and Egypt (1:8). These names underline the fact that the city is being said to be one that oppresses God’s people (like Egypt did in the book of Exodus) and tries to corrupt them (like Sodom did in the Book of Genesis). Why hide the identity of the city under symbolic names? This city can only be Rome because the book would not have been and was not afraid to insult any other city. To insult Rome was very serious. It was the one city the writer couldn’t dare to insult. It would endanger anybody found with a copy of the book. So it was Rome for it had to be condemned in disguise.
Jesus must have died before the first century for the author would not have meant that he died in Rome recently for that would have been shot down straight away. Revelation was not kept secret for it kept its own secrets in its bizarre symbolism. It spoke to the people for it said that it to be published fast for the end was nigh.

Read Revelation 1:7 “Behold, He is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see Him, even those who pierced Him; and all the tribes of the earth shall gaze upon Him and beat their breasts and mourn and lament over Him”. The context says that Jesus has made his Church a kingdom and made its members kings and priests to God. It calls Jesus the ruler of the kings of the earth. Since Jesus has the power to rule the kings and the kings defy him he is not a real king because a real king uses his power. He could make them bend the knee or cast them down from their thrones if they do not listen to him. That is what being a king is about. The Book of Revelation says that Jesus is coming back now. There is no doubt that the book thinks that Jesus is on his way and is travelling on the clouds when it calls him king and when it calls the Christians kings. He is coming to be king and this coming is so close that he might as well be described as king now and his followers as kings. This denies the gospel Jesus who claimed to be king. It denies he existed.
Now read the verse again. Why are we told that even those who pierced Jesus will see him coming on the clouds? Even means surprisingly. Now what would be surprising about that?
It could only be surprising if they are going to be raised from the dead especially to see him. That means that Jesus did not live in the first century at all for Revelation would have been written when his killers were alive if he did.
The verse stresses that everybody alive on earth will see Jesus. That is the straightforward interpretation and therefore the correct one. Christians twist it to make people think it means that all the people who ever lived will rise from the dead to see Jesus. But that interpretation is too fancy and therefore the wrong one. Why is it so important to the author that he says that all people will see Jesus? The answer is because Jesus left no evidence for his existence therefore people need to see him.
Revelation 12 has a heavenly woman with a crown of twelve stars and who stands on the moon and is clothed with the sun and who gives birth to a baby boy who has a rod to rule the nations. A dragon is ready to eat her baby and he fires down a third of the stars of Heaven to the earth. The child was born safely and snatched up to God and his throne so the child becomes a ruler which indicates that the child was taken away from possible harm at birth and kept in Heaven and then given the throne when ready – when he had become a man. The woman after the pain she had in labour flees to the desert after the child gets the throne. She has recovered by then so the child could be an adult and it could be a long time after the birth. She was looked after in the desert for 1260 days. This was before Satan was thrown out of Heaven by Michael and his army and before he was on earth to deceive Adam and Eve into sin.
A possible interpretation of this is as follows. Jesus was born in Heaven of an angelic mother who gave birth to him before Satan was thrown out of Heaven prior to the creation of Adam and Eve. She prefigures Israel and its twelve tribes because she has twelve stars. There is no reason to believe that she is Israel. Israel did not flee into the desert after giving birth to the Messiah and it did not have twelve tribes at the time it gave birth to Jesus unless Jesus was born in Egypt before the Exodus and that is what is being said but that would mean over a thousand years before Revelation was written. The view that the woman was Israel and gave birth to Jesus and then fled into the desert as the persecuted Church is not sensible. There is no reason to think that. Nothing hints that the woman becomes a new Israel. Israel rejected the faith so how could the same woman represent Israel and the Church?
Satan the dragon waited in front of the pregnant woman to eat her baby but she got away from him and had her child in safety. Later Satan the dragon was said to have been defeated in Heaven and thrown out by the blood of the Lamb so the sacrifice of the cross took place before Adam and Eve were made. So the baby had grown up and been sacrificed by the time this happened. Satan the dragon then goes after the woman when he is on earth and realises he has been defeated. The dragon is described as wreaking havoc on earth and causing sin so it takes him a long time to realise he is defeated. By the time he realises this, the children of the woman, the spiritual brethren of her son Jesus, are on the earth and he goes after them when the woman escapes. The early Church always believed the woman was Mary and the baby was Jesus. It is undeniable that if this is right the chapter says that Jesus was born in Heaven and was crucified before living memory. It is possible that the woman represents not just the mother of Jesus but all women. All women are poetically symbolised as the Woman – after all the woman was described as a sign. Maybe the dragon wanted to destroy women to destroy life on earth. Maybe that is how the woman could be the mother of those who followed Jesus. The chapter may be about a sign in Heaven but that does not mean the chapter is all symbolism and that we can never understand it. The chapter makes perfect sense and there is no better interpretation than this one.
About Jesus, Revelation 13:8 reads, “And all the inhabitants of the earth will fall down in adoration and pay him homage, everyone whose name has not been recorded in the Book of Life of the Lamb that was slain [in sacrifice] from the foundation of the world” (Amplified Bible). Some translators pervert the message to make the from the foundation bit mean what is written in the Book. But if the writer had meant that he would have put the from the foundation elsewhere (Fred Pearce, Jesus – God the Son or Son of God? Page 29). We expect this for he knew that for many people considering the claims of Christianity that his book would be the only record of Christian teaching that they would have.
Christians argue that the passage teaches that since God is outside time, it is true to say that Jesus was crucified before the world was made and even that he is being crucified now meaning that it is happening in eternity but not time is concerned. But if the author had this in mind he would have written, “from before the foundation of the world”, meaning eternity as well as time assuming time began when the raw materials of the world did. But he wrote from the beginning. He is thinking about time only. His Jesus died before the world was completely made. But there was enough of it orderly for him to have been crucified, probably by demons, where Rome is now.

But the Book of Revelation calls Jesus the Lion of Judah and the Son of David it seems. But the first occurrence calls him the root or source of David (See Amplified Bible 5:5). The lion reference is inspired by Genesis 49:9 which calls Judah the lion’s cub. Since Jesus was the lion and Judah was the cub it follows that Jesus was older than the cub his son. And Jesus later calls himself the Root and offspring of David (22:16) meaning that he was the adopted offspring of David for he could not have been David’s ancestor and offspring unless he was adopted or reincarnated. There is no evidence that Jesus was believed to be an angel or God that lived as a spirit before he was born on earth in the first century in this book. Reading the Revelation in this light is not on. So he existed as man from before Israel was formed. Jesus could have become the Messiah after David’s time and is to come again to be a proper king.

Revelation should be listened to when it reflects an ancient tradition that Jesus did not live in the first century but centuries before.

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