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Does the use of erchomai in Rev 6:17 tell us when God's eschatological wrath begins?

By my departed friend Greg Anderson (edited by Steve Conley)


Erchomai in Rev 6:17, and its relationship to the question, 'When does God's eschatological wrath begin?'


One common objection to prewrath is the 2nd aorist form of ἔρχομαι (i.e. ἦλθεν), in Revelation 6:17. This and all other objections to the prewrath eschatological model can be answered if one will simply take the time. Let's look at this point of grammar that many use to establish the starting point of God's eschatological wrath. Does Rev. 6:17 teach that God's eschatological (DotL) wrath had already started, prior to its mention by wicked earth-dwellers in 6:17?


Before we discuss Rev 6:17, let's identify a common but unsupported understanding of the Koine Greek aorist tense form. Many believe the aorist tense form, even in the indicative mood, tells us something about a verb's 'time of action'? Yet it is impossible to support such a claim from a reputable, current Greek grammar source? The whole premise of this argument (about Rev. 6:17) rests on the assumption that the verb 'has come' means the verb's action (God's wrath) occurred in past time. The claim is that the 2nd aorist indicative demonstrates this, and that this claim is backed up by most English translations. This claim calls for supportive evidence yet to be delivered.


In the meantime, please consider:


“Let us rejoice and be glad and give the glory to Him, for the marriage of the Lamb HAS COME (ἦλθεν) and His bride has made herself ready.” Revelation 19:7 [same verb form as Rev. 6:17]


Q. Is John saying that the 'marriage of the Lamb' is an event that already occurred in 'past time'? Or is this marriage action about to unfold?


"..“Are you still sleeping and taking your rest? It is enough; the hour HAS COME (ἦλθεν) . The Son of Man is betrayed into the hands of sinners..." Mark 14:41. [same verb form as Rev. 6:17]


Q. Is Jesus saying 'his hour' has already occurred in 'past time'? Or is the action about to unfold?


Let's consider English past tense verbs:


“The lights dimmed, as Frank hugged his grand daughter before her piano recital saying, 'Your time HAS COME, Susan!' ”


Q. Has Susan's 'time' i.e. her piano recital already occurred in 'past time'? Note that 'HAS COME' is an English past tense construction. NOT present tense, not future tense. So do English past tense constructions always describe an action which occurred in 'past time'?


Like NT Greek, English also uses past tense forms to describe the present, or even the future.


The bus will be there at 12. It’s time WE LEFT.


All of my shoes are old! It’s time I BOUGHT a new pair.


The man was very nervous. He WAS GETTING MARRIED that morning.


I didn't call him up to tell him the news because I WAS GOING to his office the next day.


Please consider: form is a matter of morphology in all languages. Form is not function. Function is conveyed by context." --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Greek verb tense does not convey any time designation (past, present, future) to the action, the time of action is entirely dependent upon context.

The context of Rev 6:17 is clear. They are hiding because the wrath of God is about to be poured out upon them. (See my article: "Evidence Against the Wrath of God starting with what John sees after the opening of the First Seal")

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