A Problem with the Churches
A strange commentary by Victorinus. He mentions the churches Paul wrote to but not the ones John wrote to. This is hard to believe but it would be consistent with both Eusebius and Victorinus looking at the Apocalypse John the Baptist wrote and that would not include the seven churches.
A Church History
A problem with the churches. Eusebius mentions six of the seven churches of the Apocalypse but never associates them with the Apocalypse. He doesn’t mention Antipas. All this would be consistent with an earlier version of the Apocalypse written by John the Baptist. Victorinus has a similar problem.
A First Coming
A kingdom at hand. The time was near. John the Baptist knew the Lamb, a word used 27 times in the Apocalypse. He wrote the first one. Later John the apostle added Jesus and the seven churches. He knew about the followers of John the Baptist in Ephesus. There must be a third John.
A reasonable explanation to address what is not settled. Who wrote it? When was it written? Why was the Apocalypse written? The Apocalypse has “a decidedly Jewish complexion” and it was suggested that John the Baptist was the first writer. Others have suggested multiple writers.
A Date for the Apocalypse
A bishop, John Chrysostom, is the writer according to the astronomer Nikolai Alexandrovich Morozov who sets the date as 395. At this time five of the seven dynasties of Rome had fallen. Chrysostom was in Ephesus at the end of the fourth century. Would he not look for evidence of the most famous book of the bible?
A Third John
A confirmation that the apostle wrote the Apocalypse was necessary to get it in the Bible which was being translated and defined by Jerome. Just before the Vulgate was completed John Chrysostom was in Ephesus replacing seven corrupt bishops. Jerome needed a reliable version of the Apocalypse.
A Connection to John the Baptist
A Lamb of God. A “bare record” clearly points to John the Baptist. So does the word “lamb”. This also explains why the time is at hand. He was preparing the way for the first coming. John the apostle knew all this when he added the seven churches and Jesus to his version of the Apocalypse.
A canon that only considers apostles. So why did they think John wasn’t the apostle? The apostle wouldn’t use his name five times. He wouldn’t say lamb more times then Jesus. The Baptist would since he didn’t know Jesus was the Lamb. The apostle knew who “bare record” and Jesus.
A City of God
A new bible translated by Jerome precedes Augustine’s commentary on the Apocalypse in The City of God. Prior to the Vulgate many believed the Apocalypse did not belong in the bible. This was settled once and for all by Jerome who had the authority to define the bible.
A testimony of Jesus Christ. Blessed is he that readeth. Augustine read it. “Why then read it if only to keep silence about it?” Understanding it is a challenge. You may not have time for this. You may not have that much time. It’s later than you think. You may need help understanding it. Ask for it.