Appendix to Revelation:
The Lost Record of the First 50 Years of Christianity

© 2009 Dr. Barbara Thiering

Contents of Appendix, in order of appearance:

A. The Time Circle and the World Circle

Figure 13

Figure 13 The world circle.

The authors of Revelation believed that all reality was governed by heaven with reference to their solar calendar. They had first worked it out on the principle of a sundial, by following the shadows of a central gnomon on the bare earth of their open air substitute sanctuary in loc 111 at Qumran. (For the sundial, see A. Roitman, A Day at Qumran: The Dead Sea Sect and its Scrolls (Jerusalem: the Israel Museum, 1997). The shadow moved in a circle. Its points for sunrise and sunset varied according to the season, at the solstices and equinoxes.

(See "Learning about the Calendar" in Section 4, Finding the Pesher .)

Their solar calendar, observing the equinoxes of March and September, and the solstices of June and December, worked in seasons. They combined it with their belief that heaven’s operations must be perfectly symmetrical, and must, moreover, treat the number 7 as the primary factor. If the year of 4 recurring seasons lasted 364 days, that would be a sign of symmetrical control. 364 was divisible by 7, which meant that a date always occurred on the same day of the week every year, making the date easy to remember. But the actual fact, which they were forced to admit from observation, was that the solar year last 365 ¼ days. That was 364 days plus 30 hours. The shadow of the sun did not come back to exactly the same spot every year. When they marked the 364 day spot, the sun did not reach its spot for returning for another 17 ½ days.

The same problem is found for all calendars that try to force the sun into a system comprehensible by human minds. The Julian-Gregorian calendar does it by an intercalated day, February 29, every 4 years. Adhering to their 364 day calendar, which had been in use by agriculturalists for centuries, the solarists saw that a 17 ½ day intercalation was feasible, when it was accepted that 3 ½ days, half of 7, was a time unit. They needed to intercalate 2x7= 14 + 3 ½ , total 17 ½ days.

Their 364 day year was constructed as 12 months of 30 days each , with an extra 4 days, which they placed at the end of each season, calling it the 31st of the third month of the three in the season. They inserted the needed intercalation after the31st at one of the seasons, varying according to their beliefs about which was the major season. Normally, their 31st would fall on a Tuesday, starting 6 am. But 17 ½ days later, when the date was repeated after the intercalation, the 31st fell on a Friday at 6 pm.

At the rate of 30 extra hours for the sun every year, it took 14 years for their 364 day calendar to fall back. For example, at the September equinox, September 20 or 21 (also varying slightly) it was the end of the solar year after the period of 14 years. But they had finished their 364 day year early in September, about September 3 or 4. They were behind by 14x 30 hours, 420 hours. That was 17 ½ days. So at the quartodecimal year they inserted an intercalation of 2 ½ weeks. If their previous 14 years had ended on a Tuesday 31st, they waited 2 ½ weeks as a non-time, during which they fasted, then on the Friday evening said it was the true 31st, the same date as when they had started. They named the difference as the Day period and the Night period, the Day period observing the 31st on a Tuesday for 14 years, the Night period observing it on a Friday for 14 years. (See "Chronology" in Section 4, Finding the Pesher).

This observation about their method of intercalation, with associated methods, makes it possible to date exactly all events in the New Testament period. It shows, for example, why Good Friday was already an important date in calendar terms. It was the31st in the Night period, in a year that was itself signifcant for their theory of years. When Jesus said “the hour is come” (Mark 14:41), he was alluding to their chronological theories.

The observation of the methods of intercalation, with its chronological consequences, was the initial step in the research of the present writer. It had not been previously seen, and has not been refuted.

For the Essene ascetics who preserved the solar calendar , combining it with the Julian calendar in the 1st century BC, time corresponded to geographical space. They took it for granted that Jerusalem was the center of the world, the equivalent of the gnomon. At the eastern limit where the sun rose at 6 am at the equinoxes lay Babylon. At the western limit for 6 pm lay Rome. The northern limit for midnight was Antioch, and the southern limit for noon was Alexandria.

A circle with a diameter of 8 cubits made it possible to mark equidistant hours around its perimeter. They were marked by the points where the time circle was imposed on a checkerboard of 10 x 10 cubits, formed by the 1 x 1 cubit positions within the 10x 10 space within the walls of the courtyard. At most points the conjunction of the squares with the circle gave the exact spot. Starting from midnight, as was done when the Julian calendar was adopted, the first conjunction marked 1 am, the next 2 am, and so on round the circle, except for the intermediate times 3 am, 9 am, 3 pm and 9 pm. These were not at a conjunction , and an X from the center of the crcle marked them at equidistant points with the others on the perimeter.

The X was thus able to mark intermediate places , although in an artificial way, treating them as NE, SE, SW and NW. The 3 am spot between Antioch and Babylon represented Damascus as NE, Arabia stood for SE, and Ephesus in Asia Minor the NW. For the SW, the islands of the Mediterranean were grouped as being for the Kittim, that is Gentiles, with Crete as their main center. In Acts 2:10-11, in the list of places from which delegates came on the Day of Pentecost, these directions are summarised as Jews (NW Ephesus), Proselytes (NE Damascus), Cretans (SW Crete) and Arabians (SE Arabia).

The world circle was drawn on as a map for the mission to the Diaspora. It had begun in the 6th century BC, in the time of the prophet Ezekiel, when the inhabitants of Jerusalem were deported to Babylon. Ezekiel’s visionary chariot, described in Ezekiel chapter 1, had Yahweh the Jewish God from the Jerusalem temple mounted on a chariot, of which each wheel turned in 4 different directions representing the compass points of the world. Each wheel was accompanied by one of 4 Living Creatures, called the Man for East , the Eagle for West , the Calf (preferred to Ox) for the North and the Lion for the South. The use of the terms “before and “behind” showed their relative positions, as “before” in Hebrew thought was east and “behind’ was west. The point of the vision was that the Jewish God could travel to Babylon, where he could still be worshipped. The Jerusalem temple was no longer essential.

In the early 1st century BC another mission to the Diaspora was undertaken, encouraged by the intrest of pagan Gentiles in the Jewish religion. The idea was taken up by Herod the Great (37-4 BC), who developed it to impose taxes on Diaspora Jews, bringing in for him enormous wealth. It was the Herodian organization that eventually became Christian, building on the already established system.

The chariot theme suggested a further sub-division, employing other hours on the perimeter. Spokes of the wheel could be depicted between 3 am and 4 am and their counterparts. The spokes pointed outwardsto places far away, such as Media and Parthia.

When the Temple Scroll plan was drawn up in the forn approved by Herod the Great, its 12 gates were placed on a square, with 3 gates on each side. The same pattern is found in Revelation 21:10-13. Its middle square was superimposed on the time-world circle,so that the gate of Simeon, for example, lay between 4 and 5 am. That was the time for the equinox sunrisein the distant places to which the order of Simeon was intended to travel as missionaries. Similarly the orders of Judah to the SE, and on the western side. for sunset, Issachar and Gad. The teritories were not their own home bases, but they were assigned to them in mision for political reasons.

The NW spoke pointed to Asia Minor, which developed as 5 provinces according to 1 Peter 1:1. Their inhabitants were called the “Exiles of the Dispersion”, a name for Jews who believed that their true religious center lay in Jerusalem, but were much better off financially and culturally in Asia Minor. They lived near enough to Jerusalem to be able to visit it on some occasions. When the Diaspora mission reached them they found themselves conflicted beteen the East and the West on questions of identity.

B. The Cathedral Structure

Figure 19

Figure 19. Cathedral with Heavenly Man.

Figure 19a

Figure 19a. Cathedral with Heavenly Man.

The wealthy Herods, aiming to impose a Herodian Kingdom on the world, owned houses in all the main cities of the Diaspora. Since they were far from the Jerusalem temple, Jewish worship was conducted privately in the royal houses. All members of the household, including staff, took part in daily prayers.

The houses developed as cathedrals, where the seat (kathedra) of religious authority was located,occupied by the king or by another representing him. Since Herod the Great had cultivated Essenes and made use of their chronology to serve his ambitions, Essene and related ascetics took control of worship.

Consequently the houses developed their structures from the buildings to which Essenes had been exiled, which they made into holy places. The plan of the Qumran buildings is now known. On the east side of the long north-south open air courtyard, loc 111, which – as may be seen from its features - served as a their substitute sanctuary, there was a set of north-south rooms, locs 101 and 102, which their position and contents indicate to have been a vestry to the substitute sanctuary. As shown in Ezekiel 44:19, a room was needed for the Zadokite priests to change into and out of their holy garments.

At Qumran a new feature had been introduced into the northern one of these rooms following the earthquake of 31 BC, which had damaged the substitute sanctuary so as to render it unusable. A platform for the prayers of priests had been erected over the north end of the vestry room, reached from a set of 7 steps from the back. The steps were found by the archeologists and photographed, but were subsequently removed. Photos 231, 236 in J-B Humbert and A. Chambon, Fouilles de Khirbet Qumran et de Ain Feshkha, 1994. Also in Plate 5a, R de Vaux, Archaeology and the Dead Sea Scrolls, OUP, 1973.

In the Diaspora grand houses under Essene religious control, there were two storeys above ground, and an underground basement. The two above ground were used as the upper and middle floors for worship by priests and abbots respectively, while the basement was for non-sacred purposes and was called a crypt.It also had a higher and lower division.

Since it had become the custom for steps to lead up to the elevated place of prayer, steps were retained, but now brought to the front, the south end. They led up to the middle floor, and were a conspicuous aid to the drama of worship. Behind the steps lay the higher division of the basement which, since the steps concealed it, was called a crypt, a hidden place. There was also a lower division of the basement to which offenders of various kinds were confined. It amounted to a prison, called a praetorium.Prisoners were there brought before judges, held by guards. As it was the lowest part of the house, there was a furnace there for cooking and for heating the whole house in winter. Each Herodian house contained one: in Caesarea (Acts 23:35), in Ephesus (implied in Revelation 1:78, with John 18:28) ) and in Rome (Philippians 1:13). Paul , on his arrival in Rome in 61 AD, was confined to one in the house of Agrippa II for his Romanised version of Christianity, against that of the East (Philippians 1:13 ).

In the Qumran vestry the trial of Jesus had been held in the two uncovered cubits at the north end, near to the furnace


Photo DDD. The large round furnace at the north end of the vestry.

and near the steps leading up from the back. The judges stood in a court (aulē,), which was also called a praetorium (Mark 15:16, John 18:28 and parallels) . The row of the judges was a row 1 in the 12 cubits down to the dais, while the row of the furnace amounted to a row 0 by their methods of numbering using a zero. The dais step was a row 13. With the transfer of the steps to the front in a cathedral, the functions of the northern 2 cubits at Qumran were brought down, and performed in the basement.

The use of the upper and middle floors was as in Figure 19a. The middle floor contained the table at which ministers sat to participate in the sacred meal of bread and wine that developed from Qumran practice. While sitting there the ministers were in the status of abbey members. An abbey, the educational institution of Therapeuts, was different from an Essene monastery, which contained the school for permanent celibates. Abbey members were permitted to marry. Their abbot, called Abba, was a Sadducee priest, conducting their all night vigils at the pentecontads, and supervising the production of wine which became a speciality of abbeys.

The upper floor in the house was for the king, the Herod who owned the house, and the priests who governed religion in his court. Its dimensions as a place for prayers were 10 cubits east-west – the space inside the walls of the room, each of which was 1 cubit thick – and 7 cubits north-south. Those dimensions corresponded to the prayer platform at Qumran. The platform itself had started at row 3 of the north vestry, leaving the 2 cubits uncovered space.

The middle floor, reached from steps at the front, was also 10 cubits east-west, while its north-south width was 10 cubits, making a square.Since the upper floor was only 7 cubits wide, and both floors started together at the north wall, the middle floor projected out further than the upper floor. The two floors were like steps, so that a man at the outer edge of the middle floor could look up along a sloping line to see plainly a man on the outer edge of the upper floor. But a man directly below the edge of the upper floor could not see the man above him. This situation was responsible for events at the Last Supper, as has been shown in the Word-for-Word analysis of the relevant gospel passages (John 13:24-25 and parallels).

The middle floor, a 10 x 10 cubit square, was large enough to contain the time circle of 8 cubit diameter, whereas the upper floor contained only part of it, as shown in Figure 19a. The time circle gave to the abbey membrs their geographical plan for world mission. It was the Therapeuts, with their freedom to move outside their abbeys, for marriage or other purposes, who initiated the Diaspora mission.

The X of the time circle ran out to join the perimter at the hours of 3 am (NE), 9 am (SE), 3 pm (SW) and 9 pm (NW). From the use of the term “pillars” in Revelation 3:12 and Galatians 2:9 it is readily supposed that on the middle floor a podium was placed at each of the cubit squares through which the X passed. It would have been a square flat stone, divided into two triangles by the outer point of the X. A man stood on it, like a statue on a base, showing sovereignty over a segment, a quarter of the world. His name and relevant facts were inscribed on the base as for a statue, as shown in Revelation 3:12. For example, of the two triangles of the NE podium, one looked to the North, Antioch, the other to the East, Babylon, and so on for all four. The original “pillars” had been Herodian Jewish ascetics. By 44 AD at the Christian schism they were replaced in the mission plan by Christians, namely the four who formed the original workers w ith Jesus: Peter, Andrew, James Niceta and John Aquila.

The Christian development of Diaspora cathedrals.

The Diaspora cathedral incorporated a feature introduced in the Qumran vestry, the opening of a section of the floor at the edge of the higher floor between noon and 3 pm each day. When it was open, the congregation on the ground floor below could see up to the platform where their priests stood under the open sky, offering their prayers to heaven at times when the sun was at its highest point in the sky. The significance of the opening for giving the time has been shown for Good Friday, in the Three Hours Darkness, when a necessary adjustment of the time caused it to remain covered. (See "Three HoursDarkness" in Chronology in Section 4, Finding the Pesher .) A central space of 4x 4 cubits was opened, covered by two removable planks, each 2 cubits long and 1 cubit wide. This practice was retained in the Diaspora cathedrals, but it was now performed on the edge of the upper floor, which itself was a room under a high roof, where a fixed glass panel let down the light at all times.

When this is understood, the relationship of the flors of the Herodian cathedral-house may be expressed in numerical terms. It will then be seen why the two floors and basement were understood as Heaven, Earth and Sea, the arrangement referred to in such passages as Revelation 10:5-6. It will further be suggested why the architecture of such Christian churches as St Peter’s Basilica in Rome took its present shape.

As illustrated in Figure 19, the 3-dimensional shape, a single diagram, covered the relationship of the three floors in the cathedral. A single set of numbers was in use for the 1 cubit wide rows, from 0 down to 13. That was the length of the Qumran north vestry, from its original north wall down to and including the dais step. The cathedral used the same continuous set of numbers even when they applied to different floors.

The upper floor finished at rows 6 and 7, the center of which held the noon opening. The east center of row 7 was called Heaven, The same numbers, 6 and 7, were used for the corresponding space a floor below, so that the man sitting at the meal table on that floor could not see the person directly above him. But he was said to be in Earth, for the Earth is under Heaven. Sitting at a table for meals, he and those with him were equal to abbey members, who were free to obey the needs of the body. The abbot sat at the central point between rows 6 and 7. That point became the center of the time-world circle for which there was room on the middle floor.

Since abbey members, Therapeuts, belonged partly to the village class, although superior to married men, the figure of the Heavenly Man became the main method of designating the rows on the middle floor and downwards. (See "Heavenly Man" in Section 4, Finding the Pesher .) The X shape of the time circle ran out from the center of his forehead, where he wore a phylactery. The whole world would wait for the Law that came from him. (Isaiah 42:4, in the first of the Suffering Servant Songs that were revered at Qumran). Row 10 was his “bosom”, here the Beloved, a woman or a Gentile, could sit at theAgape meal, At the Last Supper, it was John Mark, the Beloved Disciple, who looked up from row 10 on the south side of the table to see what was happening on rows 6 and 7 above. Peter, directly under rows 6 and 7, could not see, so beckoned to John Mark to tell him who was there. (John 13:24-25)

The continuous numbers went down to rows 12 and 13. The body of the Heavenly Man again gave a means of naming the spaces . His buttocks on row 12 gave a double sense to the word “feet”. All parts of the body refer, not to the part itself, but to an object worn or placed at that part. A jar for receiving the compulsory Herodian tithes that were used for welfare (CD 14:12-15) was placed at the collector’s feet.When the “feet” were washed at the Last Supper – not by Jesus but by Simon Magus as shown by RLR (John 13:5) - it meant that the jar containing money from Herodian taxes was checked in case a villager forced to pay them held some back. The part of body also gave an image for the uncleanness of money, especially in the exploitative Herodian system.

It was on the same row 12 that the Sea of the three levels was found. The term when used at Qumran referred naturally to the Dead Sea on their immediate east, as well as having a double meaning. In Revelation 10:2 the values of the compass points were reversed, so that the “right foot”, a container for charity gifts, was placed “upon of the Sea”, in the West beside the East, for PrinceAgrippa preferred the West. Whichever side it was on, it meant the basement for those given the low status of the unclean.

As the steps had been transferred from behind the Qumran prayer platform to the front leading up to the middle floor in the cathedral, there were transferred with them the function of the first 2 cubits of the Qumran north vestry, loc 101. . These 2 cubits were left uncovered so that the smoke of the furnace could escape. The Qumran round furnace, the remains of which are still to be seen, of 2 cubit diameter, was built outside the north wall of the room .

The furnace would have been used originallyfor cooking the sacred loaves. According to Exodus 25:30 with 1 Samuel 21:1-6,referred to in Mark 2:25-26, new holy loaves had to be baked afresh every day and offered to heaven in the sanctuary as the bread of the Presence. The loaves were eaten by the priests on behalf of heaven. One of the purposes of the vestry would be to give a place where the priests would eat them, while being in their physical state, “ in the body”, so not robed. In the situation at Qumran, where the exiles were dependent on pilgrims for their food, there would be enhanced reason for treating the loaves as sacred, yet to be eaten for physical needs. Mark 2: 25-26 says that the men who ate the holy loaves were hungry.

A further function of the uncovered first two cubits is shown by the pesher of events on Good Friday. It was the place for the trial of Jesus, so it was a court for judges and defendants. The word aulē, court , was used for it. (John 13:5) Peter, who accompanied Jesus at his 3 am trial, stood near the fire, that is the furnace, which was rekindled each day at 3 am for the cooking. Used every day, its coals were never extinguished, so it was called the “unquenchable fire”, asbestos, the “burning bush” of the Moses story( Exodus 3:2) It would be seen as suitable for a courtoom, a reminder of eternal punishment. It is used in that sense in Mark 9:44,45.

The consecutive numbered rows relate to the three floors.

Upper floor, Heaven, priests

Row 1
Row 2
Row 3 Royal space
Row 4 Footstool
Row 4 Music
Row 6 2 cubit plank
Row 7 2 cubit opening

Middle floor, Earth, Abbey

Row 6 seat seat seat seat seat seat
Row 7 seats
Row 8 table
Row 9 table
Row10 Beloved at bosom
Row 11 top step

Lower floor, Sea

bottom step
Row 12
Upper Basement, crypt
Row 13 Lower basement, praetorium

It is noteworthy that the internal architecture of St Peter’s Basilica in Rome reflects the structures of the pre-Christian cathedrals as shown through the pesher.

In its basic essentials, St Peter’s has an altar raised above the main floor level, reached from a set of steps at the front. The steps lead up to a platform on which the holy table stands, corresponding to the abbey table on the middle floor of the cathedral, the table being an altar.High above the table is a canopy. It would represent the upper floor that was no longer used once Christian worship adopted abbey principles rather than monastic. The congregation sit on the ground floor not far from the steps and table. Near to the steps, the visitor looks down to the recess containing the blue and silver casket said to hold the bones of St Peter, directly under the altar. Its niche can also be seen from below, at the level of the corridor of grottoes containing the tombs of recent Popes, below the level of the ground floor, but higher than ancient structures under it. The grottoes would correspond to the upper crypt.

C. The Hierarchy

From information in both Revelation, in other parts of the New Testament and apocryphal books, it becomes apparent that there was a basic structure derived through the Dead Sea Scrolls from at least the 6th century BC, when Jewish priests in Babylon were associated with archangels. From the basic pattern a series of equivalences were derived, until the original hierarchy developed into the Christian ministry.

The basis for leaders came from the chariot of Ezekiel chapter 1, which depicted a four-wheeled vehicle capable of traveling in 4 directions , E,W, N and S. The driver was the high priest, a Zadokite, acting for God traveling from the Jerusalem temple. He was not physically defined, only a shimmering appearance, “the appearance of the likeness of the Glory of the Lord” (Ezekiel 1:28. He was bringing the Jewish religion from its center in the Jerusalem temple to all the great cities of their known world, Babylon E, Rome W, Antioch N, Alexandria S. Four Living Creatures controlled the 4 wheels, the Man for E, Eagle for W, Calf for N, Lion for S. Thus there were 5 images of persons: “God” and the .Four Living Creatures.

These 5 were leaders in the monastic system, which measured time in great feasts and seasons. Each of the 5 was in charge of one of the Jewish seasonal feasts. The agricultural seasons at which they were held were denoted by appropriate colors.

Monastic system. 5 great authorities for feasts
1Gabriel, Babylon EastManSpring, greenPassover
2SarielRome WestEagleAutumn, redTabernacles
3RaphaelAntioch NorthCalfWinter, blackHannukah
4Kohath (lay)Alexandria SouthLionSummer, whitePentecost

In 1QS 8: 1 there are said to be threepriests at the top of the hierarchy. They would be Michael, Gabriel and Sariel for the main traditional feasts at the equinoxes, Atonement, Passover and Tabernacles. There was originally no traditional winter feast, until Hannukah (Dedication) was added in the 2nd century BC.

In 1QM 9:15-16 the order and status of the priests is given. Their names were to be written on the shields of warfare, showing that they were the authorities over holy war. Michael and Gabriel were placed on the right,therefore superior; Sariel and Raphael on the left, therefore inferior. That meant that Jerusalem and Babylon were superior, Rome and Antioch inferior, Alexandria lowest with an actual fighter, the Lion.The Zadokite presence in Babylon is shown throughout Ezekiel, including the Taw sign of initiation, in the X shape, in Ezekiel 9:4.

Abbey system of 7 lesser ministers for days of the week and grades

For the abbeys,schools for Therapeuts which were more open than monasteries, there was another set of lesser status, 7 ministers for the days of the week, making 12 ministers in all. As shown in the Table below, they were denoted by the Hebrew letters and the numbers that the letters were also used for. The numbers from Qof 100 down to Lamedh 30 were used to determine the number of days that a married man spent away from his family in solitary spiritual retreats. Qof was the letter for graduation after 4 years study in a school. When “a camel passed through the eye of a needle” (Mark 10:25), a man graduated, for the ordinary meaning of the letter Qof was “eye of a needle.” He then entered Class C, the third of the four main classes. In Hebrew, the letter Gimel was used as the third, actually a G, but used as equal to C. The ordinary meaning of Gimel was “camel”.

From 1 AD, at the separation of Qumran from Essene monasteries, the first three great priests for the seasons served also for the first three days of the week. The Annas Sadducee priests who then began their reign took on the roles of Michael and Gabriel. Herod the Great had set the pattern in his claim to be the Messiah of Aaron and Israel. He was at times represented by a Phanuel, whose role as a supreme priest was defined in the fragment 4Q400. Phanuel’s office became that of a cardinal. Gabriel was at times represented by the Christ, of equal grade. His presence withh the Annas priest illustrated the Herod-David split of 1 AD.

The days of the week were valued in relation to the Saturday sabbath, so that Friday was the least important, for the lowest minister, and Sunday was day 1 of the week. Saturday was a number 0. A zero was in operation for all systems.

The lowest levitical familes, of Kohath, Gershon and Merari, named in 1 Chronicles 6:16-30 and in the Temple Scroll, were placed last in the list of higher ministers. The ordinary Christian forms of ministry, bishop, presbyter and deacon, were derived from them.

The educational grades, each requiring a year’s study, were numbered from 0 as the highest down to 10 as the lowest. Pre-initiates belonged in the grades 10, 9, and 8. Undergraduates studied for 4 years, through grades 7, 6, 5,and 4. Graduates began at grade 3, and entered the three divisions of the sanctuary at grades 2, 1 and 0.

Sets of images were associated with the grades, as shown in the table. The four main ones were welfare recipients and Nazirites, the Poor and Crippled (welfare for tithes), and Lame and Blind (Nazirites for alms ) (Luke 14:21)

Abbey system of 7 lesser ministers for days of the week and grades
Saturday0Michael, Godcardinal Phanuel0,3Taw0400
Sunday1Gabriel, Christabbot, SpiritClass AShin1300
Monday2Sariel, Lord, Westdeputy abbotClass BResh2200
Tuesday3Raphael, Northarchbishop, kingGraduate Class CQof3100
Wednesday4Kohath, Southbishop, LifeCong. Class DSadhe490
Thursday5Gershonpresbyter, Truth Gentile Class EPe580
Friday6Merarideacon, WayAdam GentileAyin670

CongregationWelfare recipientsNazirite
Lame, InitiateSamekh760
SarahNoahWithered, dryMem940
EveVirginDoveShemLeper, sickLamedh 1030
MiriamSisterRavenHamBoy 19, sparrowKaph20
WifeHenJaphethBoy 18, cock Yod10
Boy 17Tet9
Boy 16Heth8
Boy 15Zayin7
Boy 14Waw6
Boy 13He5
Boy 12Daleth4

As has been seen in the Word for Word pesher of Revelation chapters 2 and 3, the 7 Gentile churches of the province of Asia followed the pattern of 7days of the week and corresponding ministries and grades.

D. Systems of Plagues and Aeons. Other Chronology additions.

Systems of Plagues

A “plague” was a seasonal attack on the Romans by the Therapeuts of Egypt, acting like Moses who brought the plagues on Pharaoh in Exodus chapters 7 to 12. The original plagues had been agricultural blights affecting the seasons, so the plan was to.start with an attack at each of the four seasons of the solar calendar, at the equinoxes and solstices.Of the 10 plagues of Egypt, 7 were selected for repetition. The number 7 was the one most highly revered by Therapeuts, as is stated by Philo. “Nature takes delight in the number 7” (Allegorical Interpretation I, 8), “The properties of the number 7 are beyond all words” (On the Creation, 90). As Pythagoreans they could believe that all events were determined by arithmetic - until their expectations failed. Of the total of 10 plagues, the first 7 were said to form an initial unit, for persistent harassment against Rome, until the final 3 which would bring an onslaught and the desired victory. The first 7 plagues according to Exodus were: rivers of blood , frogs, gnats, flies, cattle disease, boils, hail. The final three were locusts, darkness and death of the firstborn.

In 7 years there were 28 seasons, 4 per year. The number 4 was equally revered, as the first square. The unit of 7 plagues permitted combining 4 and 7 in a set of 28 by planning for 4 successive series of 7 plagues extending over 7 years. The first in each set started March 1, the Jewish beginning of a year, and ended January 1, the Julian beginning of a year. Terms such as “frogs” and “hail” gave a means of dating for those familiar with the complex system. When a “frog” appeared, as in Revelation 16:13, it was the season of the 2nd plague in a set of 7 years that was 7 years later than the previous “frogs”, that is it was September 68 AD. When “hail” appeared, as in Revelation 16:21, it was January 70 AD, 7 years later than the “hail” of January 63 AD.

On the due date the secret order was received by members in other parts of the world to stage a demonstration or some act of harassment that would show the extent of their hostility to Rome and gain sympathy.

The seasonal “plague”began on the 1st of the Julian month, since an attack on Rome should appropriately use their Julian calendar.

The system began in 1 BC, which was the millenium 3900 after a correction of Herod the Great’s millennium. It fell in the period of the Roman Occupation of Judea. As the Roman domination continued, the series was renewed, each set of 7 years supplying a timetable for militant action against Rome. In Parts C and D of Revelation, from the time of Nero onwards, the word appears in Revelation 15:1, 6, 8; Revelation 16:9, ; Revelation 18:4, 8; Revelation 21:9; Revelation 22:18. The word “plague” gives a date in terms of the current Table.

March 1 BC to Jan 7 AD

1)Mar 1 BC(0)June 1 BCSep 1 BCJan 1 ADMar 1 ADJune 1 ADSep 1 AD
2)Jan 2 ADMar 2 ADJune 2 ADSep 2 ADJan 3 ADMar 3 ADJun 3 AD
3)Sep 3 ADJan 4 ADMar 4 ADJun 4 ADSep 4ADJan 5 ADMar 5 AD
4)Jun 5 ADSep 5 ADJan 6 ADMar 6 ADJun 6ADSep 6ADJan 7AD
blood 1 frogs 2gnats 3flies 4cattle 5boils 6hail 7
(Locusts 8 )(Darkness 9) (Death 10)

March 7 AD to Jan 14 AD. (not set out)
March 14 AD to Jan 21 AD (not set out)

March 21 AD to Jan 28 AD

1)Mar 21June21Sep 21Jan 22Mar 22June 22Sep 22
2)Jan 23Mar 23June 23Sep 23Jan 24Mar 24Jun 24
3)Sep 24Jan 25Mar 25Jun 25Sep 25Jan 26Mar 26
4)Jun 26Sep 26Jan 27Mar 27Jun 27Sep 27Jan 28
blood 1 frogs 2gnats 3flies 4cattle 5boils 6hail 7

March 28 AD to Jan 35 AD

1)Mar 28June28Sep 28Jan 29Mar 29June 22Sep 29
2)Jan 30Mar 30June 30Sep 30Jan 31Mar 31Jun 31
blood 1 frogs 2gnats 3flies 4cattle 5(Locusts 8)(Darkness 9)
3)Sep 31Jan 32Mar 32Jun 32Sep 32Jan 33Mar 33
(Death 10) frogs 2gnats 3flies 4cattle 5boils 6hail 7
4)Jun 33Sep 33Jan 34Mar 34Jun 34Sep 34Jan35
blood 1 frogs 2gnats 3flies 4cattle 5boils 6hail 7

March 35 AD to Jan 42 AD

1)Mar 35June35Sep 35Jan 36Mar 36June 36Sep 36
2)Jan 37Mar 37June 37Sep 37Jan 38Mar 38Jun 38
3)Sep 38Jan 39Mar 39Jun 39Sep 39Jan 40Mar 40
4)Jun 40Sep 40Jan 41Mar 41Jun 41Sep 41Jan 42
blood 1 frogs 2gnats 3flies 4cattle 5boils 6hail 7

March 42 AD to Jan 49 AD

1)Mar 42June42Sep42Jan43Mar43June 43Sep 43
2)Jan 44Mar 44June 44Sep 44Jan 45Mar 38Jun 45
3)Sep 55Jan 46Mar 46Jun 46Sep 46Jan 47Mar 47
4)Jun 47Sep 47Jan48Mar 48Jun 48Sep 48Jan 49
blood 1 frogs 2gnats 3flies 4cattle 5boils 6hail 7

March 49 AD to Jan 56 AD

1)Mar 49June49Sep49Jan50Mar50June 50Sep 50
2)Jan 51Mar 51June 51Sep 51Jan 52Mar 52Jun 52
3)Sep 52Jan 53Mar 53Jun 53Sep 53Jan 54Mar 54
4)Jun 54Sep 54Jan 55Mar 55Jun 55Sep 55Jan 56
blood 1 frogs 2gnats 3flies 4cattle 5boils 6hail 7

March 56 AD to Jan 63 AD

1)Mar 56Jun 56Sep 56Jan 57Mar 57June 57Sep 57
2)Jan 58Mar 58June 58Sep 58Jan 59Mar 59Jun 59
3)Sep 59Jan 60Mar 60Jun 60Sep 60Jan 61Mar 61
4)Jun 61Sep 61Jan 62Mar 62Jun 62Sep 62Jan 63
blood 1 frogs 2gnats 3flies 4cattle 5boils 6hail 7

March 63 AD to Jan 70 AD

1)Mar 63Jun 63Sep 63Jan 64Mar 64Jun 64Sep 64
2)Jan 65Mar 65Jun 65Sep 65Jan 66Mar 66Jun 66
3)Sep 66Jan 67Mar 67Jun 67Sep 67Jan 68Mar 68
4)Jun 68Sep 68Jan 69Mar 69Jun 69Sep 69Jan 70
blood 1 frogs 2gnats 3flies 4cattle 5boils 6hail 7

The intensive two campaigns from 56 to 63 AD and 63 to 70 AD resulted not in victory but catastrophe, the fall of Jerusalem. Then when hope was renewed under Simon Bar Kokhba who claimed kingship in 99 AD, at the end of a 49 year jubilee from 50 AD, a new set began, from 99 to 106 AD, 106 to 113, 113 to 120 , 120 to 127 , 127 to 134. His new Jewish state was founded in 132 AD and collapsed in 135 AD.

System of Aeons

Another system on which the solarist Pythagoreans relied to give a date was that of the Aeons of the Aeons (aiōnas tōn aiōnōn). An aeon was a set of 490 years, part of the sets of 490 years relied on in the Apocalypse of Enoch. According to that book, all time since creation had been divided by major events for the Jewish people every 490 years. When history arrived at the year 3920 from creation, the 8th aeon (8 x 490) , a Restoration would come. The Zadokites and Davids who had been expelled from office by the Persians would be restored to their rightful place in the Jerusalem temple and palace.

Although it had been necessary to make frequent corrections to the system, even to the extent of altering the date of creation, the solarists clung to their belief, especially when it looked as if history was bringing them to the year in question. From 21 BC, after several corrections, they believed that it was about to come, encouraged by the reign of Herod the Great who was friendly to Essenes. When nothing happened then, they allowed a zero jubilee of 49 years, bringing them to September AD 29, when Jesus announced a fulfilment (Luke 4:16-21). They still hoped in March 33 AD, 3 ½ years later, allowing for the 3 ½ years that commemorated the desolation of the temple in Daniel 9:27, half a “week” of years. March 33 AD was the season of the crucifixion. As Simon Magus was well aware, his “resurrection” of Jesus would be powerful evidence that the true Restoration had come, and he, Simon was its instrument.

However, he failed to convince the Annas priests, who were pro-Rome and in favor of worthy Herods. Through them, especially Matthew Annas, Agrippa II became Christian. But there was still no Restoration to the Jerusalem temple and palace. Matthew Annas at least cherished hopes for the East, for a universal triumph in both Wet and East. The term “Aeons of the Aeons” continued to appear after the gospel period.

A date that could be interpreted in these terms was made the suject of an announcement from the edge of the upper floor in Diaspora cathedrals. It was announced on the planks covering the 4 x 4 cubit opening at the center of rows 6 and 7, at times when the opening was closed. The genitive relationship of the terms meant that both rows 6 and row 7 were used for the announcement, the one on row 6 being superior to the one on row 7.

Since the equinoxes of September and March had proved unproductive, it came to be believed that the Restoration would come at the solstices, those of June and December, the dates of which, slightly varying, fell at about the 20th or 21st of the Julian month. If hope was held at the June solstice because of some minor victory, it was declared that this was the first appearance, a foreshadowing of the final one in December. If December gave no decisive event but something favorable happened, it was held that it was the foreshadowing of the decisive one the following June.

The question then arose, What particular date at the solstice was the correct one for the foreshadowing and the fulfilment? Since it was to give victory over the Romans, it should be on the Roman New Year, January 1, and/or on their other half year, June 1. These were the dates when the term appeared in Revelation in 1:6, 1:18, 4:9 and 4:10 (in these latter two cases at the extension from midnight at 3 am), 10:6, 11:5. The dates expressed the expectations of Romanised Christians for victory in the West. But for Matthew Annas, the Sadducee priest who was a co-founder of Christianity, the fulfilment should include Jews of the East. The great date should be the major one of the solar calendar, the intercalated 31st, which fell at about the time of the solstice. Since 3 am as the extension of midnight was the preferred decisive hour for Therapeuts when they ended their vigil, it could come at that hour.

In order of appearance the dates were:

Revelation 1:6PentecostSunday June 1, 49 AD 3 am
Revelation 1:18Sunday June 1 49 AD, 9:05 am
Revelation 4:9Monday June 2, 49 AD, 3 am
Revelation 4:10Monday June 2, 49 AD, 3:05 am
Revelation 5:13Wednesday June 18, 49 AD, 3 am
Revelation 7:12Dec-JanuaryMidnight beginningTuesday December 12, 52 AD
Revelation 10:6(Part A (i) ) Year 14Midnight beginningWednesday January 1, 44 AD.
Revelation 11:15(Part A (i) )Midnight beginning Monday June 1, 44 AD

Additional Chronology in Revelation 1260 days, Revelation 11:3 and Revelation 12:6

The chronological term 1260 days appears in Revelation 11:3 (Part A (i))and 12:6 (Part A (ii)). In the context of calendar signposts, it would certainly have a calendar significance. As may be seen, it was another method of giving an exact date. Its solution affects one of the major critical problems, the date of the crucifixion. In John’s gospel it is stated that Good Friday was a pascha, apparently meaning Passover. Yet the word pascha in Mark 14:1 is used for a date that appears to fall at least earlier in that same week.

To turn first to 11:3 and 12:6, the special meaning of the word pascha is not Passover, but “unleavened bread”. For the record of Exodus 12, both fell 14/I, at the same time. In Exodus 12:6 the Passover is to be observed 14/I in the evening. In Exodus 12:18, the 7 days of unleavened bread begin 14/I in the evening.

The starting point of many problems is the fact that underlies all detail of the solar calendar, that it adopted a quartodecimal intercalation of 17 ½ days. It was necessary in order to bring their 364 day year into line with the 365 ¼ day year of the sun. Every year they fell behind the sun by 30 hours, and in 14 years had fallen behind by 14 x 30 hours, 420 hours, 17 ½ days. The symmetry of their 364 day calendar was retained, and they performed an intercalation of 17 ½ days.

An intercalation is a method of bringing the calendar into line with the sun. For us, using the Julian calendar, it is February 29 every 4 years, because over 4 years we have fallen behind the sun by 6 hours per year, so we adjust by having an extra day of 24 hours.

An intercalation unit of 17 ½ days appears awkward, but not when it could be understood as 2 ½ weeks. 3 ½ days was half a week of 7 days, and, as shown in Daniel 9:27, could be treated as a unit of measurement.

The regularity of the solar calendar, in which the date fell on the same day of the week every year, meant that what was the solar date on a certain day of the week in March 6 AD was the same in March 44 AD. Both years produced a day 1260 which is used as a time point in Revelation. Both years were in the period of the Night position of the calendar, when the intercalated 31st fell on a Friday.

In the normative Day position of the calendar the intercalated 31st fell on a Tuesday. The next intercalation began on a Tuesday morning and treated the next 2 ½ weeks as a non-time. When it finally reached the Friday evening, it was said to be the same date as when it had begun, the 31st, but now intercalated. A full list of the dates of the intercalated 31sts in our terms will be found in the See "Table of Julian and Solar Dates" in Section 4, Finding the Pesher, Chronology).

A further factor was the intercalation of 3 ½ years. A period of 3 ½ years “non –time” had been introduced to commemorate the desolation of the temple by the Seleucid conqueror Antiochus Epiphanes in 168 BC (Daniel 9:27) For a year of 364 days, 3 ½ years was 1274 days (364 x 3 =1092 + half year 182 = 1274.) For Revelation, the period of 3 ½ years extended from September in the earlier year to March in the later year.

Since the intercalated 31st was Day 1274, Day 1260 occurred two weeks before it.

The method of finding Day 1260 in the Night position was:

At the start of the intercalation on a Tuesday 6 am, count 3 ½ days until the following Friday of the same week, which was day 1260 .Then count an even two weeks, 14 days, until Day 1274, the intercalated 31st on a Friday 6 pm, at the end of 17 ½ days.

Thus, in the year 44 AD, for Revelation 11:3, On Tuesday March 3 at 6 am, start the 17 ½ days intercalation. Count 3 ½ days until Friday March 6 at 6 pm. This is Day 1260, two weeks before Day 1274 Friday 6 pm is the intercalated 31st, Day 1274.

In the year 6 AD, when the other Day 1260 occurs (Revelation 12:6), the Tuesday for the start of intercalation, was March 2. Day 1260 was Friday March 5 at 6 pm. Day 1274 was Friday March 19 at 6 pm, the intercalated 31st.

In the gospels there is no Day 1260, but the week of the crucifixion in March 33 AD gives relevant facts, with its varying use of the word pascha. Its detail may be brought together with March 44 AD, when a commemmoration of the crucifixion was held, described in Revelation 11. In 44 AD, after 11 years, the Julian calendar produced the same dates on the same days of the week. Friday March 20 was Good Friday in 33 AD, and a commemoration of it was held on Friday March 20 in 44 AD .

Another important fact was the variation between Exodus and Leviticus on the date for the start of unleavened bread, pascha. For Exodus, it was the same as Passover, 14/I in the evening. For Leviticus 23:6, it was the following day, 15/I. The Leviticus passage states that 14/I was Passover, and 15/I Unleavened Bread. The difference is acknowledged in Mark 14:1. Its pesher is “It became the pascha. And the unleavened bread (azyma) after (meta with accusative, the time unit after) 2 days (day 2 of the week Tuesday, and with “after”, Wednesday). To the pesharist the Mark verse says that the Passover was on Tuesday March 17 and the Unleavened Bread was Wednesday March 18, 33 AD. Different words, pascha and azyma, are used in Mark for the two different dates on Tuesday and Wednesday.

But John’s gospel uses the word pascha for Good Friday at noon (John 19:14). A further step must now be taken on this complicated matter, which gives (perhaps!) some understanding of the disputes in the medieval Church about the date of Easter.

According to Luke 5:33, “the disciples of John fast frequently. And they offer prayers. And the ones of the Pharisees.” The study of the dates and times in the Synoptic gospels yields the fact that groups connected with John the Baptist and some Pharisees added 2½ days to the date when the intercalation began, and kept on adding 2 ½ days. Each day reached during the process was a day for fasting. The reason was, as usual, mathematical. They “fasted frequently”, over 7 years. 2 ½ x 7 = 17 ½. They then repeated the process during the next 7 years, bringing them into line with the quartodecimal method. So, starting at the same time as orthodox solarists, on the Tuesday 31st, they added 2 ½ days at once, then kept on doing so over the next 7 years, then repeated the 7 years.

Whereas, in the Night position, the intercalation began on a Tuesday, they waited 2 ½ days, a figure drawn from their varying treatment of the 17 ½ days

In March 33 AD, on Tuesday March 3 at 6 am, 14/I they started their next 7 years, adding 2½ days to bring them to Thursday March 19 at 6 pm. That was the date of the Last Supper. It was treated as a 14/I Passover as in Exodus, so on that evening the ceremony of the Passover lamb was held. “They killed the pascha” meaning they held the lamb ceremony that afternoon and evening (Mark 14:12).

But the same group had their Leviticus faction, which counted 2 ½ days from Wednesday 15/I 6 am to Friday. For them, Good Friday March 20 was the pascha for the lamb ceremony, as in John. The John 19:14 passage states clearly that it was the 6th hour, noon. On a Friday the Essene regulations required a noon meal, as there was to be none at 6 pm. At noon on Good Friday Jesus was hanging on the cross. For the calendar experts the hour was confirmation that Jesus was the paschal lamb, the Suffering Servant of Isaiah 53:7, whose suffering performed the atonement.

There was thus no contradiction between the Synoptics and John. Different methods of calculating the pascha were being used, both arising from different traditions that had begun in ancient times.

E. Rules of Pesher

(This section is also located in For Reference. Note: Addition rule for Tenses in Revelation is highlighted in pink.)

While the pesher mainly depends on the special meanings of terms, additional devices were introduced.

  • All events are strictly successive
    In narrative, each event follows the previous one. There are no "flashbacks" to previous events. Quoted speech may, however, refer to past or future events.

  • Plural of reproduction (plu.rep.)
    An apparent plural term refers to a single person or object. One person could reproduce the office of another, according to a theory of unbroken succession in an office. So "scribes", "Pharisees" etc mean a single person, reproducing the function of another scribe or Pharisee. Similarly an object reproduces the function of another.

  • Rule of the last referent. (RLR)
    The device that makes most difference to the apparent sense is the Rule of the Last Referent (RLR). It is: when the subject of a verb is not given, or a pronoun alone used, the subject of the verb or referent of the pronoun is not to be supposed from the general sense, as would be normal, but is mechanically derived, allowing no subjective suppositions. It is to be found in the last occurring noun of the same person, number and gender as the verb or pronoun requires.

    The mechanical nature of the device is seen when the referent is in quoted speech immediately preceding. There is not necessarily a connection in the sequence of narrative, but the referent is nevertheless supplied in the same way.

    Some cases of RLR make a significant difference to the meaning, giving a different subject from the one that would be naturally assumed. These are marked SRLR.

    A frequent exception occurs when the preceding word is in the genitive case. The grammarians apparently treated a genitive as adjectival, part of the governing word. This is applied also to genitives governed by a preposition. There is also no reference back to a vocative, treated as a 2nd person not a 3rd person.

    When two singular persons have been named, followed by a plural verb, the verb does not refer to the pair, but to a previous plural noun.

    All referents are given in the word-for-word pesher. They make differences to the meaning, giving further information. In the resurrection narrative, for example, the device is used several times to make Pilate the subject, whereas it would normally be assumed that Jesus was the subject. The information is thus given that Pilate was an initiate and could be promoted in the grades.

  • Participles
    It also becomes apparent that participles were subject to distinctions by the grammarians. A participle is part of a verb that acts also as a noun. Its verbal function is drawn on when a participle does not refer back to a noun or pronoun, but to the subject of the previous verb. It does not refer back to a verb in speech, where the verbs may give a past or future time that is different from the time of the participle. When a participle follows speech, its subject is the subject of the verb in the narrative preceding speech.

  • Infinitives
    Infinitives, not being a full verb, act like participles. A pronoun with an infinitive refers back to the subject of the previous verb, not to an intervening referent.

  • Tenses
    Since the equation of time and place is a basic assumption of the pesher, the Greek tenses, normally referring to time, are used in a sense that has a pesher in terms of position. In the Book of Revelation, with its simpler and more obvious systems, the present, future and past tenses are used to place the action in the center, the east, and the west respectively. In the gospels and Acts, the tenses are used to indicate differences of social position, not physical position. When the present tense sometimes appears without apparent reason in the course of a narrative in the past, it indicates that the subject of the verb, a member of the celibate community normally following its recurring rules, is at this point acting in his capacity as a man in the world of villagers and the married. It may be found for Jesus, who as a dynast belonged with both celibates and in the world. It is used only of a restricted group in the same category.

    In the Book of Revelation, with its simpler and more obvious systems, the present, future and past tenses are used to place the action in the center, the east, and the west respectively. In the gospels and Acts, the tenses are used to indicate differences of social position, not physical position.
    In quoted speech, tenses are used in their natural sense referring to past, present and future.
    The distinctions in narrative apply to full verbs only, not to participles and infinitives, and indicate only minor differences in status which are not drawn out in the Word for Word interpretation dealing with major events.
  • "And" begins a new sentence
    Since the Greek manuscripts did not give punctuation, it normally had to be assumed, but this procedure was not objective enough for pesharists. Verbal punctuation was supplied by the word "and’ (kai) which following Hebrew usage began a new sense unit.

  • Questions are statements.
    Apparent questions depend on punctuation, not present in Greek manuscripts. As they have to be objectively determined, they are to be treated as statements. A question is marked by a word, ei, the word meaning "if". The words following it are then quoted speech.

  • Words not given are not to be supplied.
    A transitive verb may require an object that is not supplied. The object is not to be assumed, but the sense of the verb alone is to be relied on.

  • Repetitions of words
    Repeated words are not for style but indicate two different positions, east and west, of the same subject.

  • Nouns with numbers
    All nouns with cardinal numbers (not ordinal numbers) are to be read as a numbered item in a series. Eg. three days, day 3 (Tuesday, the 3rd day in the week). Two men, Man 2, one man only, of grade 2.

  • Double negatives
    In Greek a double negative is normally used to mean simply a negative. In the pesher it is treated mechanically, two negatives giving a positive.
  • Parts of body
    All words for parts of the body mean, not the part itself, but an object used or worn at that part. A rule of possession for these terms in a form such as “face of him” shows that it is not the literal face by referring “him” to the referent before last, another person.
  • Apposition
    When two nouns or the equivalent, referring to persons, appear together, the second one is in apposition, meaning a different person from the first one.
  • Genitive relationship
    When two nouns are in a genitive relationship, X of Y, X is a grade below Y in the system of grades.

F. Corrections to Jesus of the Apocalypse

The first outline of the pesher of Revelation was given in my 1995 book, Jesus of the Apocalypse, published by Transworld Doubleday, now Random House. Its account of the structure and chronology still stands. In the verse-by-verse treatment it was not possible at that stage to give the pesher of every word. Further study in subsequent years has now made that possible. It is published on this website only, with thanks to Dylan Stephens for opening up the form of publication of a website derived from the Internet.

Some corrections of Jesus of the Apocalypse may be noted:

Two new calendar observations were made after its publication, requiring correction of some detail of dates, but not of the overall chronology. They are first, the series of Plagues. Wherever the word “plague” appears, it refers to one of the tables of Plagues that are given in the Appendix and repeated at each relevant verse. They were a complex system based on the plagues of Egypt in Exodus, which were sent to punish Pharaoh of Egypt. (Exodus 7-12). Each season in the Qumran set was predestined , they believed, for an attack on the emperor of Rome, the latterday equivalent of Pharaoh.

The other new observation concerns the expression “aeons of aeons”. An aeon in the pesher language meant a year 490 in the historical scheme set out in the Apocalypse of Enoch. A vital one, the 8th aeon, the year 3920 from creation, was still in the future at the time of writing that book in the 3rd century BC, and in the 1st centuries BC and AD it was still relied on by the Essene ascetics. The year 3920 should bring a Restoration to power of their Zadokite priests and David kings. Their expectations for a Restoration in the form of a great political victory were constantly disappointed, but they clung to them and kept making calendar adjustments. When they adopted a Roman Julian calendar making January 1 the New Year, they thought of the year in two halves, at the solstices of December-January and June, instead of at the equinoxes September and March as Jews had previously done. So the Restoration should come in two stages, its early signs at a solstice, and its fulfilment at a later solstice. The early one was an “aeon”, but subodinate to the later one, so the expression “aeons of aeons” arose, since “of”meant a subordinate relationship in the pesher language.

Another corection concerns the 5th and 6th seal of Revelation 6:9 and Revelation 6:12. Since a “seal” was a new book of Christian scripture being canonised, and the first 4 were the gospels, I at first assumed that the 5th and 6th were other books of the New Testament such as Epistles. Rather, they mean the gnostic gospels of Thomas and Phlip. The 7th Seal is the early part of the Book of Revelation itself.

The structure of buildings in which the action took place became better understood through detail that is now published, added to personal observations and measurements. This information is given in some new Figures.

End of Word for Word Pesher section and Appendix: The Lost Record of the First 50 Years of Christianity
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