Could an "end of the world" prediction alter your perception? Many Christians read the Bible with the news report each day hoping to see any fulfillment of prophecy that will lead to unexpected turn of events— "the beginning of sorrows" leading up to "the end." Or possibly, the greatest of all events— "Christ's return" leading up to "a new heaven and a new earth."
It may sound Calvinistic to say this, but the Apocalypse was certainly predetermined. God decided beforehand that destruction will come upon those who would not do the words that are written in the Book of the Law (Deuteronomy 28:58-61). Another major truth that must be recognized is that the Lord Himself talked about the "Jewishness" of the Apocalypse in the Olivet discourse. In fact, Jesus Christ predicted the definite events that led to the utter desolation [despoliation] of Jerusalem and the fall of their nation in A.D. 70 (Matthew 24; Luke 21:20-24).
We must also remember that the apostate Jews who rejected Christ and delivered Him to the Romans had "the greater sin" and received "the greater damnation." The Jewish nation was given to "the tormentors" until the "Day" that Jerusalem [Babylon the Great] was consumed with fire (Malachi 4:1; Matthew 18:34, 23:14; John 19:11; Revelation. 17:16).
So knowing God's judgments upon the Jewish nation is more than just a Preterist proposition or interpretation; it is a revelation of real eschatological events in first-century Israel. Yet all too often many Christians miss that crucial point.
We always encounter these expressions: "signs of the times," "last days," "two witnesses," "Babylon the Great," "antichrist," "wrath of God," "kingdom of heaven," "great white throne judgment," and "resurrection of the dead." But we fail to check how these apocalyptic expressions reveal God's judgments in a manner that applies to the Jewish nation and the Roman Empire during the first century.
For that reason, we have written these series on "fulfilled prophecy." It is our hope and conviction that through these study notes you will be blessed with a better understanding of Biblical Apocalypses, of Heaven and Hell, and above all, of the Glory of God.