Death of the Beast
Anaclisis esteems no degree of academic acclaim; but rather, fear of the unknown; it equally affects the learned and unlearned. Recognizing academician and plebeian propensity to equal metaphysical susceptibility, Ben Winter would recommend a hiatus to traditional perceptions, to disregard previous impressions (as much as possible), and proceed to investigate the strict semantics peculiar to Bible documentation. Dr. Borden's prognosis concerning “Daniel visions being opened to understanding and therefore Revelation, in mid-First Century A.D.," ignores his own futurist requisites; for, he proposes a future 'end time,' post-First Century A.D. (after A.D. 70), which, together with his claim to Daniel insight, is nonsensical to the limit imposed by Daniel’s non-access until the futurist time in Borden’s on prohibition to the evidence he would dextract.
We should first acknowledge the future 'events sequence' to be feasible only in the Parousia fulfillment: that is, one continuous event but Daniel not being accessable until the ‘end time’; if so, then, we should attempt to establish parameters for accomplishment. Devolvement between the point in Daniel visions to Parousia beginnings was sealed to understanding until the 'end time' actuality. You cannot have two Parousias Dr. Borden; so what shall it be, the time leading up to Temple destruction in A.D. 70 or some Temple destruction in the future. Therein, 'relative negativism' would seem to be indicated, to clear our mind of infeasible applications and alert our cognizance to practicality. And we would forewarn the curious; such technique is not ubiquitous in Borden’s “The Death Of The Beast.” Dr. Borden violates his futurism (second coming extension) prognostication when he pronounces Daniel to be interpretable, for Daniel visions were sealed until the 'end time,' or Parousia; therefore, antagonistic to his own assertions, the visions would remain inviolate until Dr. Borden's unseasonable and unreasonable 'end time' forecast. Realistically, the good Doctor cannot unseal Parousia cabala prior to his imagined time frame. If the good Doctor can interpret such, then he must do so in post-Parousia beginnings; thus, his futurism becomes unseasonal unless he can experience an aorist event complete with 'end time' horrors, Temple worship, and ongoing Parousia.
Opinionative offense marks page 1; here, Borden posits in bold type: "Revelation is a book written for every generation!" Such cannot be the case, for the vision was to Seven Churches in Asia. In specific instruction, Revelation 2:10 would limit certain utility, “. . . and ye shall have tribulation ten days: . . .” We do not intercept the quote meaning to define a literal ten days; but realistically, we cannot furnish commentary on every traditional inharmonic opinion on the ancient semantics; for, “The Death Of The Beast” contains about 340 pages of continuous departures from semantic reason. But suffice to say, those ‘ten days’ had special meaning and are inapplicable to modernist or futurist application. One can find a reasonable interpretation for Bible cabala in THE GREAT DECEPTION: Symbols And Numbers Clarified, by Ben Winter.
The good Doctor should have questioned: why only “Seven Churches In Asia” (Asia Minor)? And he should question why 10 brides awaited Messiah, regardless their preparedness. And why Seven Brothers would be proposed (by the Sadducees) to contend for a wife they all had previously wed—and all dead at the time? Why the Samaritan woman had been Covenanted to Five Husbands, and was then living with a man and un-Covenanted? Of course, he did not! Neither have other futurist advocates! The numbers oppose conventional pedagogy, and more than one bride opposes Paul's one wife limitation. Why, then, ten for the Messianic Bridegroom?
Traditionally, conventionally, and typically, lest there be some misunderstanding where Dr. Borden is coming from, he proliferates the ultimate misinterpretation when he writes on page 4: “Seven reasons will clearly illustrate that Revelation was written initially about the fall of Rome in the first century; . . .”
The above statement, then, represents Dr. Borden's premise: all prophecy, parables, and other prophetic literature must conclude with Rome's imminent destruction--and then prescribe an 'eternal generation' to await Parousia. Such linguistic liberty makes absolutely no sense!
This author would ask, why ‘initially’ in the quote and not ‘totally’? But choice of words for Revelation text origination is not the issue; the issue revolves around selecting Rome as protagonist to earn Deity anger, judgment, and retribution; notwithstanding, the recalcitrant children of Israel were scheduled as promise recipients and to merit judgment actions. Misinterpretation is made more farfetched when we consider the imminence and urgency in Revelation language and the great length of time required to accomplish Rome’s demise. And if The Death Of The Beast, or any other commentary, should propose Rome or the Pope to have been imminently deposed in the first century, such entity's eminence in biblical text would stretch credibility to the utmost--notwithstanding the Pope's failure to exist in biblical times. And concerning imminent destruction--if the Pope had existed then, does not the Pope and his henchmen still sell absolution to the unwary, 2000 years after the 'at hand' destruction proposed by Dr. Borden? To shorten this critique, Winter would castigate Borden's shortsightedness with the following brief comments:
1.) Page 249, the Beast should be Israel, not Rome as claimed.
2.) Page 226, the Locusts should be Saints, not Demons as claimed.
3.) Page 208, the 'Second Death' is not Spiritual Death but 'death' of Spiritual Death.
4.) Page 262, Gematria, or numerology, can be made to mean whatever the author
might imagine or desire. The numerical oddity, 666, however computed, is the number of a man. No 'man' meets the existentialist criteria other than tribal Israel, as'man' pseudonym. Such a 'man' is described in II Thessolonians 2:3. This entity represents the same seed line from whence the "son of 'man'" must evolve.
5.) Page 204, (inchoate with 1st Seal, through 208 and 4th Seal) How wrong can you
get? The Beasts, opening the Seals, wish only to show their own characterization
to John. And the First Seal contents do not represent Messiah. If you want to
know who, read the book.
6.) Page 126 and 164, Revelation was not written between "69 and 79 A.D."; it was
written in A.D. 60. How could it be written after the fact and still recommend an
imminence for certain events.
7.)Page 20, Interpreting the Image relative to Nebuchadnezzar's dream, Borden
wrongly proposed the Medo-Persian Empire to be one inferior to
Nebuchadnezzar's Empire and thus represent the Imaged silver breast and arms.
Reason fails to be reason if we propose an inferior kingdom to conquer a
superior kingdom. No, the inferior kingdom to succeed Nebuchadnezzar was his
grandson, Belshazzar, not the Medo-Persians.
8.) Page 15, The Roman Empire was not responsible for Messiah's crucifixion; the
honor belonged to Judean Temple authorities.
9.) Page 21, The Shaggy He-goat, Daniel 8, did not represent Greece as proposed by
Borden; but the symbol was a far more sinister opportunist (Grecia) with translated features representing Israel heritage. One should remember who belongs as principal characters in the entire biblical Ten Ages sequence.
10.) Page 41-43, Sorry but Nabonidus was not ruler over Belshazzar or Chaldea at
Belshazzar's death; for Belshazzar was Chaldean king at his death time, not
Babylon king as traditionally thought. Nabonidus was long gone--many miles
away, out, in the desert (at Temah) doing archaeological work and building
Temples. Chronology is distorted when limited to the biblical Daniel Chapters’
11.) Page 47-48-49-53-56, Concerning Daniel prophecies, Borden’s commentary is
obsessed with the Medo-Persians as principals in Daniel’s prophetic visions. He
miscalculates the Tribal People's cabala style and demonstrates a propensity to
expose one and symbolize another. The visions are consistent however; for
prophetic symbology, though changed over time intervals and symbols choice,
always represents the same thematic protagonist.
12.) Page 38, Here, Dr. Borden neglects the Babylon desolation so energetically
qualified by subsequent evidence. However, the biblical desolation instance does not mean destruction, but rather, nonexistence to Babylonian influence following Cyrus and the Persian eminence. Consistently, no one lives there today as Babylonian, but rather as Iraqi; but, to be sure, people still live there and always have as far back as history can record. Estheticism, idealism, and spiritualism are commendable in ethical attributes, but are always relative, and can never replace reason and logic as syllogistic affirmation for symbols intent.
Lest this critique become extended and overly tedious, let us offer a summation. Dr. Borden's book faithfully conforms to traditional interpretation and expectation, and cannot be faulted in this respect--however, its conformity to historical fact and semantic integrity is lost in 'propositional truths.' Admittedly, my own brief comments can do little more than roil confusion in the casual adherent; therefore, as a foil to those extraordinary persuasions fostered by conventionality and insalubrious recommendation, this author submits "THE GREAT DECEPTION: Symbols And Numbers Clarified" as a source to logically refute popular symbol interpretations and offer relief to the world's anaclitic dependency, to relieve the monotheism adherents hard-pressed and impoverished misunderstanding.