Eschatology and the Book of Revelation, Part One
Learn what the Bible teaches about the End Times!
Taught by Dr. Arnold Fruchtenbaum
- Eschatology is the study of last things
- Covers prophecy from both the Hebrew Bible & New Testament
- This course, Part One, covers Revelation Ch. 1-14
- Level: Associate’s
- Discipline: Theological Studies
- Course Title: Eschatology and the Book of Revelation, Part One
- Course Code: MJT 302
- Prerequisites Recommended: None
- Instructor: Dr. Fruchtenbaum
- Length: Five Units: 15 Segments, 9 hours of video lectures
- Course Cost: $99 (excluding textbooks)
- Audit Cost: $49 (excluding textbooks)
The video above is the first video segment for this course; there are 15 video segments for this course. The video lectures vary in length.
Meet Your Instructor
Dr. Arnold Fruchtenbaum
Th.M. Dallas Theological Seminary, Ph.D. New York University
Dr. Fruchtenbaum is the Founder and Director of Ariel Ministries. He is a world-class Bible scholar and authority on Messianic Jewish theology and biblical studies. He also has been a prolific author and in-demand Bible teacher and conference speaker in the United States, Canada, Italy, Israel, Germany, Hungary, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, and many other nations.
I. Course Outline
Unit 1: Introductory Material
The Outline of Eschatology
Introduction to the Book of Revelation
Unit 1 Exam
Unit 2: The Course of this Age: Part One
Unit 2 Exam
Unit 3: The Sequence of Pretribulational Events: Part One
Unit 3 Exam
Unit 4: The Sequence of Pretribulational Events: Part Two
Unit 4 Exam
Unit 5: The Great Tribulation: Part One
Jews and the Worldwide Revival, The Trumpet Judgments, The Two Witnesses, and The Ecclesiastical Babylon, and Summary
Unit 5 Exam
II. Course Learning Objectives
- There are Course Learning Objectives for each Segment of the course.
- So, for this course (Eschatology and the Book of Revelation) there are 15 Segments, thus 15 separate sets of learning objectives.
For example, here are the Learning Objectives for Segment #1
Segment #1 Learning Objectives
After studying this segment, students should be able to:
- List and explain the seven reasons why biblical prophecy is an essential element in life for a believer.
- Define what is meant by having a “two world view.”
- State the approach used by Dr. Fruchtenbaum for studying prophecy.
- List, define, and identify examples of the rules of interpretation provided both by Dr. Fruchtenbaum and Dr. Pentecost that must serve as a foundation for a study of eschatology and biblical prophecy.
- Examine the historical development of the allegorical and the grammatical-historical methods of interpretation and contrast the two methods.
- Understand when “eschatology proper” begins, with reference to the seven dispensations and the basic outline of eschatology.
- Demonstrate an understanding of how the book of Revelation serves as the “grand central station” of biblical prophecy
- Know the historical background, the four interpretive approaches, essential message, and outline of the book of Revelation.
- Understand Rev. 1:1-20 as whole in context but also each verse specifically, including the meaning, interpretation, and implications for the believer today.
- Memorize and meditate upon the promises in Rev. 1:3 and consider beginning each study session for this course with that verse in prayer.
III. Required Textbooks and
- For each of the 15 Segments you will see this heading which lists the required reading for that particular Segment.
- Students can do this required reading before or after watching the Segment video lecture.
Segment #1 Required Reading
- Article by Dr. Paul Benware “Biblical Prophecy: An Essential Element in Living a Genuine and Useful Christian Life.” Read this 12 page article. (We’ll provide pdf files to our students after signing up for the course).
- The Bible – Read Revelation Chapter 1 from at least two different translations (e.g. ASV, NASB95, HCSB, ESV, etc.). It is recommended that you read it several times, the more the better). In addition, it is often good to listen to an audio Bible.
- Fruchtenbaum, FOTM refers to the Arnold Fruchtenbaum textbook, The Footsteps of the Messiah: A Study of the Sequence of Prophtic Events. Revised edition. San Antonio, TX: Ariel Ministries, 2020. For this Segment, read the Foreword, Prefaces, and Chapter 1.
- Purchase Info: Textbooks are not included with the price of the course. You can purchase this book directly from Ariel Ministries, electronic/ebook or hardcover, or from any other retail source that may carry the book but be sure to get the 2020 edition. To order this from Ariel please contact the Ariel home office (210) 344-7707 or (877) 242-7435 or send an order via email to firstname.lastname@example.org You can also order it on the Ariel Ministries as well: https://www.ariel.org/books/the-footsteps-of-the-messiah
- Pentecost, TTC refers to the Dwight Pentecost textbook, Things to Come: A Study of Biblical Eschatology. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 1964. For this Segment read the Preface, Introduction, Chapters 1-4
- Ariel Ministries does not carry this book so you will need to purchase this online from: Christianbook.com or Amazon.com or OliveTree Bible software sells it as part of their Bible software. You can also order it directly from the publisher: https://www.zondervan.com/9780310308904/things-to-come/
- Constable, ENOR refers to Thomas Constable’s, “Expository Notes on Revelation.” Read the Introduction and his notes on Rev. Chapter 1 (this is page 1 to 38 in the 2020 edition). You can read them online or download them as a pdf document from his website. Here is the link: https://planobiblechapel.org/tcon/notes/pdf/revelation.pdf
- Copyright Policy. “Unauthorized translation, republishing, file duplication, website or email distribution of any portion of this copyrighted material in any form, without the express written consent of Dr. Thomas L. Constable, or his appointed representatives, is strictly forbidden. You may use these Bible study notes for your own personal study or for teaching a class. You may download a copy to your computer, print, or make paper photocopies for a class or Bible study group, but charge only the cost of copying. You may NOT make changes and then attribute the Notes to Dr. Constable.” Permission was granted to Ariel Online Courses for use of these resources. If you’d like to make a donation to his ministry, here is the link: https://planobible.churchcenter.com/giving
- There will be a number of free journal articles and other resources provided for students who sign up for this course, however there will be some you will need to purchase and download (these are generally only a few dollars). For example, in Segment #10 you will need to purchase and read the following Messianic Bible Study:
Arnold G. Fruchtenbaum – “The Little Apocalypse of Isaiah,” Messianic Bible Study (MBS) 064, Tustin, CA: Ariel Ministries, 1980.
IV. Optional Reading
- You will also see this heading, Optional Reading, for each of the 15 Segments for this course.
- Optional reading is not required but it is recommended. Optional reading items are helpful but keep in mind that Ariel Ministries does not necessarily endorse all the content or doctrines in the optional readings in this course. For an example of this part of the curriculum, here is the Optional Reading for Segment #1
For example of this part of the curriculum, here is the
Optional Reading for Segment #1:
Segment #1 Optional Reading
Read about the persecution Dr. Fruchtenbaum endured when he became a believer in Yeshua, and the pressure he was under to renounce his faith in Yeshua and return to “normative” Judaism. Grace, Jesse, L. Chosen Fruit: The Personal Life Story of Dr. Arnold G. Fruchtenbaum, Founder and President of Ariel Ministries. San Antonio, TX: Ariel Ministries, 2015.
- Benware, Paul. Understanding End Times Prophecy: A Comprehensive Approach. Chicago, IL: Moody Publishers, 2006. Chapter 1. (We provide links to several other of his resources to our students)
- Thomas Constable’s “Audio-based Bible Studies on Revelation.” These are audio teachings (stream or download) which you can access on the following link: https://planobiblechapel.org/constable-audio-revelation/ It is recommended (not required) that you listen to the first three lessons on Revelation:
- “The Unveiling of Jesus Christ”
- “Overview of Revelation”
- “The Preparation of the Prophet John”
- Cooper, David L. Exposition of the Book of Revelation. Biblical Research Society, 1972. Read Chapters 1-4. This book can be downloaded as a free pdf file here: https://www.biblicalresearch.info/Revelation.pdf
- Geisler, Norman. L. Systematic Theology, Volume Four: Church, Last Things. Minneapolis, MN: Bethany House Publishers, 2005. Chapter 13.
- Swindoll, Charles. Insights on Revelation, Swindoll’s New Testament Insights. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2011. Introduction and Chapter 1.
- Thomas, Robert L.Revelation 1-7: An Exegetical Commentary. Chicago: Moody Press, 1992. Introduction and Chapters 1-2.
- Walvoord, John F. The Revelation of Jesus Christ (Galaxie Software, 2008).
V. Study Questions
- Again, there are custom study questions for each segment of the 15 segments to this course.
- Study questions do not need to be answered by the student. These are only listed to assist students in preparing for the Unit Exams or for students to test their own knowledge and recall.
Below is a sample of the Study Questions for this course:
Segment #1 Study Questions from Benware Article
- Think About It – “Those who fail to inform their flock of things to come do not follow the example of Yeshua and the Apostles whose teachings were peppered through and through with truths about future things.” How well is your congregation or church doing in terms of teaching about future events (both in terms of doctrinal accuracy and spending sufficient time teaching it)? We call these “Think About It” questions and they are designed as very short essay questions. It is requested that you write a 2 to 5 sentence response in the space provided on the Unit Exam.
- What is a “two world view” and how does it relate to biblical prophecy?
- Biblical prophecy understood and embraced will have significant, positive results in the believer’s life. Dr. Benware lists seven such results. List them.
Segment #1 Study Questions from Fruchtenbaum, FOTM and Lecture
- In this study of prophecy, what is the approach taken by Dr. Fruchtenbaum?
- What were the reasons for discussing rules of interpretation prior to the study of specific topics of eschatology?
- You will be required to memorize the Golden Rule of Bible Interpretation.
- How many direct quotations from the Old Testament are there in the book of Revelation?
- Summarize what we learn the source and transmission of revelation from 1:1-3.
- What is meant in verse one that states that the things that are being revealed “must shortly come to pass”?
- Verse three puts an obligation on the fifth person of the progression, the believer, while at the same time giving a promise. What is the obligation and the promise?
- What is the central theme of the book of Revelation and what verse is cited to support this claim?
- What insight was given with regard to the Greek word in Rev. 1:10, translated as “Lord”?
Segment 1 Study Questions from Pentecost, TTC
- Think About It: Why do you think Dr. Pentecost begins his book with a discussion about interpretation, specifically the hermeneutics of prophecy?
- Explain what is meant by the following statement: “The first great danger of the allegorical method is that it does not interpret Scripture.”
- A second great danger in the allegorical method is that the basic authority in interpretation ceases to be the Scriptures, but the mind of the interpreter. What are some of the things that would impact such a loss of objectivity?
- The Platonic Jews of Egypt began in the first century, in imitation of the heathen Greeks, to interpret the Old Testament allegorically. How did this impact Philo of Alexandria’s interpretive method?
- The Fathers of the third and later centuries may be divided into three exegetical schools. List the schools and foremost exponent from each.
- Dr. Pentecost made the following statement, “Luther also maintained the perspicuity of Scripture…He sometimes came near to the modern remark that, “the Bible is to be interpreted like any other book.” Do a bit of your own research online and define “perspicuity of Scripture.”
- The Grammatical School was founded by Ernesti, who wrote an important work on the interpretation of the New Testament, in which he laid down four principles. Be able to identify these principles.
- Dr. Charles Feinberg stated “…in the interpretation of prophecy that has not yet been fulfilled, those prophecies which have been fulfilled are to form the pattern.” Elaborate on what he means by this statement.
- Briefly summarize each of the four interpretive approaches to Revelation.
- List the various views on the meaning of the “seven Spirits.”
- Messiah Yeshua will return physically to earth, just as He ascended physically into heaven. What verses support this?
- John sometimes first stated a general term, and then followed it up with a more specific one. What example is provided here?
- According to Dr. Constable, these “angels” (1:20) were probably men. Why and what biblical support is there for this?
VI. Spiritual Growth: Implications and Applications
- There is a unique Spiritual Growth Implications and Applications feature for each Segment of the 15 Segments.
- These are an important part of our courses because they help students to internalize application points which foster growth in character formation.
- There are a variety of approaches used with vary with each Segment. Sometimes this involves journaling, praying through a passage of Scripture, insights on Jewish outreach and discipleship, a little additional reading (we provide the content at no extra cost), and sometimes some Bible memorization/meditation on short passages. Students taking our courses for credit are required to complete the Spiritual Growth assignments, however students who are auditing our courses do not need to do these assignments.
- When a written assignment is required, such as a journal or prayer, students must complete these, but they are not turned-in for grading or credit. We expect students to complete these assignments, using the honor system.
- For student journal assignments you can use a Word doc on your computer or a handwritten journal or notebook; whichever you prefer is fine (again these will not be collected, turned-in or graded).
- However, when there is a Bible memory passage that is assigned and also required, then the Bible memory passage will be included in the Unit Exam. Bible memory verses for this course are based on the NASB (1995) version of the Bible; per Dr. Fruchtenbaum’s instructions. He uses the ASV in teaching but requested that the NASB be used for the Bible memory passages for this course.
Segment #1 Spiritual Growth: Implications and Applications Assignment*
In many of these segments you will be asked to meditate upon and memorize Scripture. Meditating upon Scripture simply means thinking deeply about it. In short, it is a way to slow down and let the Word of God soak into your mind and heart, to internalize it. This can be done by reading it over and over, which is excellent, and of course, through memorizing it. Ideally, we should select larger portions of Scripture to memorize because too often when we only memorize one verse it can easily be taken out of context and is more susceptible to misinterpretation. The benefits of memorizing Scripture cannot be overstated.
As a teenager, Arnold Fruchtenbaum used to attend summer Bible memory camps and was required to memorize longer portions of Scripture. He did this joyfully and is still reaping benefits from that discipline today. You can read all about this in his biography, Chosen Fruit: The Personal Life Story of Dr. Arnold G. Fruchtenbaum, by L. Jesse Grace. Here is an except related to his efforts in Bible memory camp:
“In addition to Camp Sar Shalom taking place every summer, Burl Haynie was planning the launch of a new Memory Camp in the summer of 1959 on behalf of the ABMJ at another campsite in the Adirondack Mountains in upstate New York. Being a keen learner of the Word of God, Arnold yearned to take part. As an incentive, the teenagers were offered a paid trip if they could have the one hundred and twenty assigned Bible verses memorized before the start. Over a prior ten-week period, they were expected to learn twelve verses by heart each week. A local ABMJ worker would check on the accuracy of the recited verses and then send the results to the ABMJ headquarters” (p. 92-93).
We won’t have you memorize 12 verses for this segment but we will have you memorize three, Revelation 1:1-3. You can memorize this in good Bible version you desire (Dr. Fruchtenbaum recommends the ASV 1901 or the NASB95) and then write it out on the Unit Exam from memory.
Note: This portion of the curriculum for the course, entitled “Spiritual Growth: Implications and Applications Assignment” is a requirement. Therefore, students must read this portion for each segment and complete any work that is assigned. Sometimes this involves Bible memorization/meditation passages, other times it may require additional reading and journaling. On rare occasions there may be optional assignments, but this will be stated, otherwise, assume that all work in this part of the curriculum is required.
The purposes of this portion of the curriculum are threefold:
- To help students be discerning thinkers, to evaluate biblical interpretations in light of accurate exegesis and sound doctrine (1 Thess. 5:21-23; 2 Tim. 2:15; Titus 2:1)
- To internalize Scriptures and aspects of the study that can foster character formation towards Christlikeness as students grow in their knowledge of God, of themselves, and of the Scriptures (Romans 12:1-2; 2 Peter 3:18; James 1:22).
- To keep an emphasis on Messianic Jewish implications and applications (e.g. Jewish evangelism and discipleship, living a Messianic Jewish life that is well-pleasing to the Lord).
VII. Course Exams
- There are no mid-term or final exams, no term papers, no major projects, presentations, or quizzes.
- There are, however Unit Exams for all of our courses. Unit Exams are open-note, open-book, and open-Bible.
- The exams are based on multiple-choice, true-false, and fill-in-the-blank type of questions.
- The exams are on the website as well, graded automatically. Take as long as you need to complete the exams and exams can be taken as many times as needed.
- Students can save answers and close the exam and finish at a later time if desired. Students taking courses for credit are required to take the exams but students who audit our courses can skip or by-pass all the exams.
- This course is comprised of five unit exams. Each unit exam is to be completed after viewing the lecture, completing all required reading, and assignments for that particular unit.
Exams vary in length (between 100 to 200 questions).
*Note: The Unit 1 Exam is comprised of 151 Questions. Here are a just a few sample questions from that exam to give you an idea of the format:
Segment #1 Exam Questions from Benware article “The Importance of Biblical Prophecy”
- Think About It: “Those who fail to inform their flock of things to come do not follow the example of Yeshua and the Apostles whose teachings were peppered through and through with truths about future things.” How well is your congregation or church doing in terms of teaching about future events (both in terms of doctrinal accuracy and spending sufficient time teaching it)?
- Peter refers to prophetic events almost ______ times in his two epistles. Jude, Hebrews and Paul’s writings are simply packed with statements about future events.
- Prayer and Scripture. “Imagine for a moment that the angel Gabriel showed up at your bedside tonight and informed you that Yeshua was going to return sometime this month. Assuming that it really was Gabriel, do you think you would have a serious problem with sin from that point on?” Take some time to think this through and consider praying about this now. When you are done type out 1 John 2:28, 29, and 3:3 in the space below. Do not just cut and paste Scripture but type each word. This may help internalize these truths into your mind and heart.
- False teaching characteristically has a “one world” focus and a person who is not indoctrinated with a “two world” perspective will easily fall prey to this kind of false teaching. The Apostles warned us that the basic element in much of false teaching is “lust.” Lust (epiyumia) does not, as some think, simply refer to immorality. While immorality is included, the word rather refers to:
- A lack of biblical knowledge
- A lukewarm love for God and things of God
- wrong desires of any kind
- sexual sins (in thought or behavior)
Segment #1 Exam Questions from Fruchtenbaum, FOTM and Lecture
- In this study of prophecy, what is the approach taken by Dr. Fruchtenbaum?
- To study it thematically, by topic
- To study it theologically, by doctrine
- To study it chronologically, as the sequence of events are revealed in Scripture
- To study it practically, with a focus on contemporary relevance and application
- You were required to memorize the Golden Rule of Bible Interpretation. Now, from memory, fill-in the missing words:
- When the ____ sense of _____ makes common ____, seek no other _____ therefore, take every _____at its _____, ordinary, _____, literal meaning, unless the _____ of the immediate _____, studied in the light of _____ passages and _____ and fundamental _____, indicate clearly _____.
- One of the most important rules of good Bible interpretation to follow relates to the important of:
- Cause and Effect
- The Book of Revelation has 550 direct quotations from the Old Testament.
- According to Dr. Fruchtenbaum, the majority of the things found in the first twenty chapters of the Book of Revelation are found elsewhere in the Old Testament. Only the last two chapters deal with things totally new.
- Verses 4b-5a indicate the primary author of the book of Revelation was:
- The Spirit
- The angel
- The Triune God
- What is the central theme of the book of Revelation and what verse is cited to support this claim.
- The Kingdom of the saints as priests to God is the theme and this is supported by Rev. 1:6
- The New Earth is the theme of the book and Rev. 21:1 supports this
- The death and resurrection of Yeshua is the theme of the book and Rev. 1:8 supports this
- The return of Yeshua to this earth is the central theme of this book and Rev. 1:7
Segment #1 Exam Questions from Pentecost, TTC
- Think About It. “No question facing the student of Eschatology is more important than the question of the method to be employed in the interpretation of the prophetic Scriptures. The basic differences between the premillennial and amillennial schools and between the pretribulation and posttribulation rapturists are hermeneutical, arising from the adoption of divergent and irreconcilable methods of interpretation. The fact that the Word of God cannot be correctly interpreted apart from a correct method of and sound rules for interpretation gives the study its supreme importance.”
- This statement by Dr. Pentecost appears in the very first paragraph of his book. Why do you think he begins his book with a discussion about the method of interpretation, specifically the hermeneutics of prophecy?
- Look it Up: Dr. Pentecost made the following statement, “Luther also maintained the perspicuity of Scripture…He sometimes came near to the modern remark that, “the Bible is to be interpreted like any other book.” Do a bit of your own research online and define “perspicuity of Scripture.”
Dr. Charles Feinberg stated “…in the interpretation of prophecy that has not yet been fulfilled, those prophecies which have been fulfilled are to form the pattern. The only way to know how God will fulfill prophecy in the future is to:
- Consider the consequences if He does not fulfill them in the future”
- Ascertain how He has done it in the past”
Segment #1 Exam Questions from Constable, ENOR
- Dr. Constable views the book of Revelation as:
- An epistle containing prophecy, much of it apocalyptic
- Entirely apocalyptic
- Half prophetical and half homiletical
- An unknown genre of literature that thus cannot and should not be categorized
- Dr. Constable wrote a chapter entitled “Suffering in the Book of Revelation.” What is the title of the book in which this chapter appears? [Note: Dr. Constable’s footnotes are important so some questions will be drawn from the these as well.]
- Why, O God? Suffering and Disability in the Bible and Church
- How Long O Lord? Suffering and Disability in Scripture and in Life
- Pause for Prayer and Praise: Re-read Rev. 1:12-17 as well as the following quote form Barclay – “The hand of Messiah Yeshua is strong enough to uphold the heavens and gentle enough to wipe away our tears.” Take a few moments to meditate upon this and write out your thoughts in the space below. Consider writing it out in the form of a prayer or praise to God.
- Grades on Unit Exams are calculated into percentages (100% = perfect score), regardless of the number of questions on an exam.
- The final grade is automatically calculated, also using percentages, based on all of the combined totals from all ten Unit Exams.
IX. Communication and Contact Information
- Because our courses are pre-recorded, self-paced, with open-enrollment, there is no direct personal one-on-one student-to-teacher or teacher-to-student communication.
- If you have customer service type of questions related to the online courses, please click on the “Contact Us” link on the Ariel Online Courses homepage or you can email the Director of Online Studies at: Administrator@ArielCourses.com
- Please do not send questions related to course content to the course instructor or professor. Please do not call the Ariel home office regarding the Ariel Online Courses. Instead, please use the “Contact Us” link on the Ariel Online Courses homepage or the email: Administrator@ArielCourses.com
- We will promptly respond to your questions, generally within 48 hours (except on weekends or holidays). All communication with Ariel Online Courses will be through email, there is no telephone customer service for matters pertaining to Ariel Online Courses.
X. Course Records
- If you complete the “My Profile” section on the Ariel Online Courses homepage, we can keep an official record for your progress including the courses you complete and your grades. Please sure to complete this information.
- “My Profile”
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