The “Last Days” of Isaiah 2:2 Versus A Parallel in Revelation 11

Don Preston argues that the “last days” in Isaiah 2:2 defines the context of all of Isaiah 2-4 to be the “last days”, which Preston then further defines to be the Destruction of Jerusalem. In the list below Preston takes scriptures from Isaiah 2-4 and finds what he takes to be parallels in Revelation. Then, Voila!, he concludes Revelation is merely a highly symbolic book describing the AD 70 destruction of Jerusalem. There are a couple of problems with Preson’s approach. First, the context of Isaiah 2-4 is not continuous, and the list of scriptures from there therefore does not speak of a single prophetic event but refers to various times and events. Second, the parallels he draws from Revelation are often not parallels at all, as we show in the comments. Since the prophecies in Isa 2-4 do not pertain to a single event, the comparison with Revelation is relatively meaningless. The context shifts from the “last days” referring to the last 2000 years of the earth (Isa 2:1-4) to the sordid moral condition of Isaiah’s day (Isa 2:5-9) to the Second Coming (Isa 2:10-22) to the day of Jacob’s trouble (Isa 3:1- 4:6).

Isaiah 2-4 compares to

Revelation “Parallel”

James’ Comments

Prophecy for the “the last days” (2:2) 

John was in the last days (Acts 2:15f)

The argument appears to be, John lived in the last days, therefore his Revelation is for the last days. I don’t have a problem with this, except that the “last days” only defines a time subsequent to one half of the total duration of this age. “The last days” does not require fulfillment of all things in John’s day. In fact, most of the events Isaiah mentions that are in the 3000 years of the last days are clustered toward the end of that time.



What are the last days?
The last days are the last 3, 1000 year days. Starting from Pentecost (the 5th day) and including the millennium (the 7th), there were 3 out of 7 days left. The “last days” cannot be limited to the time just before the coming of Christ, because the Lord’s house does not descend until after Jesus returns at the close of the 6th day. The coming of Christ is the end of the 6th day and the beginning of the 7th (“very early in the morning”, cp Mk 16:2). The Lord’s house descends on the 7th day, but the 7th day is one of the last days.



What happens in the last days?
1. The mountain of the Lord’s house is fixed above the top of the mountains (YNG) and above the hills (Isa 2:2)
2. People from many nations will come to it (Isa 2:2)
3. The people from many nations will come to learn of the God of Jacob and to serve Him. (Isa 2:3)
4. God Himself will judge the disputes and settle the differences of these various nations. (Isa 2:4)
5. The time of God’s rule will be peaceful, and war will be a thing of the past. (Isa 2:4)
6. People will enjoy leisure and reap the benefits of their labor. (Micah 4:4)
7. There will not be threats from any source (Micah 4:4)
8. The law of the Lord and His word will go forth from Zion and Jerusalem. (Isa 2:3)
9. God will pour out the Spirit upon men and women. (Joel 2:29)
10. Before the day of the Lord comes, the sun shall be turned into darkness and moon into blood. (Joel 2:31)



11. Before the day of the Lord comes, there will be portents in the heavens and on the earth–blood, fire, and vapor of smoke. (Joel 2:30)
12. God will send deliverance to those that call on the name of the Lord. (Joel 2:32)
13. Mt Zion and Jerusalem will provide deliverance in the last days. (Joel 2:32)
14. The remnant of the Jews will provide deliverance (Joel 2:32)
15. The dishonest gain of the rich men will witness against them when the Lord of Hosts returns in the last days to avenge all injustice against His people. (Jas 5:3)
16. Jesus spoke in the last days after He had been made heir of all things. The things Jesus spoke during His ministry were not of Him, but were of the Father. (Heb 1:2)
17. Lustful scoffers will come before the day of the Lord. (II Pe 3:3) 18. They will ridicule the idea that Jesus is coming again. (II Pe 3:4) 19. They will be willfully ignorant of the creation and the judgment of the Flood. (II Pe 3:5)

Israel guilty of blood-guilt, shedding blood of prophets  (4:4)

Babylon guilty of blood of prophets (16:6f)

Isa 4:4 says not one word regarding the shedding of the blood of prophets. No match here. Rev 16:6 speaks of the third bowl of wrath. This plague is the same as the third trumpet plague in Rev 8:10-11 that involves the Amazon basin polluted by fragments of a poisonous asteroid. Babylon is not mentioned until the seventh plague. There is no logical connection between Babylon that is mentioned in the 7th plague and the blood of the prophets in the third plague of Rev 16:6. The connection between the plagues only exists in the DOJ scenario, but that is the issue to be proven. You can’t assume a conclusion, and then use your assumption to prove your point!

Day of Lord to punish blood-guilt (2:19f; 4:2f)                     

Day of the Lord to punish blood-guilt (6:9-17)

Isa 2:19ff and Rev 6:9-17 are actually parallel. However, Isa 4:2ff is not. God is the Avenger of Blood (Rom 12:19), and on the day of the Lord, He will do just that. Isa 4:2 has a different context. There are several things about Isa 4:1-6 that do not fit the context of the DOJ, the coming of Christ, or the new earth.
1. There are many more women than men, and they are so desperate for children that they are willing to support themselves and their children if the men will only take away their reproach. This event is probably the one that was foreshadowed by Pharaoh’s murder of the males during the days of Moses. At the antitype event described in v 1, like the time of the Exodus, men will be scarce because of their deaths related to protecting the country from the Assyrian invasion. Like it was when Israel left Egypt that Israeli men had multiple wives, so it is here in Isaiah 4 that multiple women will attach themselves to one man.
2. It is time of escape for Israel. That did not happen at the DOJ. Israel was conquered, but Isa 2:2 shows an Israel that escaped the assault made upon them. This verse also does not talk of the Second Coming or the New Earth, because it talks about “survivors”. At the Second Coming, everyone will die.



3. There will be people that remain and that are left and that remain among the living. At the DOJ everyone fled, was killed, or was captured. At the Second Coming, there will be NO survivors or fugitives. All will die (He 9:27, Isa 13:12)
4. The purging of blood from Jerusalem by judgment and burning happens when there are people left in Zion and Jerusalem. That did not happen at the DOJ, and nobody will remain after the Second Coming. The earth will return to primeval silence for 7 days after Jesus comes again.
5. No literal sense can be made of verse 5 with respect to the DOJ. The description of a cloud and pillar of fire also does not describe the new earth, for then floating city of New Jerusalem will be above the earthly Jerusalem. The pillar of cloud and fire are what happened to israel in the wilderness. Isaiah’s description here shows that at some point in the future before New Jerusalem descends, God’s visible presence returns, just like it did before the Exodus when Israel gathered at Raamses to come out of Egypt.



6. No cloud protected or lightened Israel at the DOJ. Also, New Jerusalem will be the light of earthly Jerusalem on the new earth, not a pillar of fire. Verse 6 describes an event that is yet to be when God sets His visible presence over Israel. It will remain there until He comes again. The pillar stood between Israel and the Egyptians before Israel crossed the Red Sea. It will stand between Israel and the nations before God’s people cross into the new heavens and new earth. This time instead of crossing a sea of water, God’s people will cross a sea of fire when Jesus returns to redeem the earth and rescue His people.

Day of Lord time of war against Israel (3:13-26) 

Day of the Lord against Babylon, where the Lord slain (11:8)

Isa 3:1-26 also contains things that do not fit the DOJ, the Second Coming, or the new earth. The term “the day of the Lord” does not appear in this chapter. Isaiah uses the term “in that day”, and you have to determine from the context what day it is. The day of which Isaiah speaks is a day when Judah has fallen and Jerusalem is ruined, but the Israeli people remain in the land and in control of their ruins. On the day of Jacob’s trouble, the Assyrian invaders actually overrun northern Judah and get as far as the suburbs of Jerusalem (Isa 10:24-34) before they are turned back. Only on the day of Jacob’s trouble do you have a situation where Judah falls and Jerusalem is ruined, but somehow Israel survives and remains in control in the land. This is not true of any other historical or prophetic event regarding Jerusalem. 1. Children will rule in Jerusalem (v4) 2. People will live in Jerualem among ruins (v6) 3. Women rule in Jerusalem, even as Isaiah 4:1 describes a population in Jerusalem that is disproportionately women. (v12) 4. Clothes are destroyed, but people survive (v17, 6, 7, 24) 5. Baldness and scabs on the heads of young women is a symptom of radiation poisoning, not the DOJ or the end of the world. (v24, 17) 6. The men are destroyed in the war (v25). At the DOJ everybody died, fled, or was taken captive. At the end of the world, everyone dies. Only on the day of Jacob’s trouble do you have an event where a disproportionate number of women survive.

Tabernacle follows day of the Lord (4:4-6)

Tabernacle follows day of the Lord (21:2f)

Again, nowhere in Isaiah 4 does Isaiah use the term, “The day of the Lord”. He uses the term “in that day”, and the day to which he refers must be determined from the context. The context of “that day” is a ruined Jerusalem where women outnumber men 7 to 1. It is a day when God’s visible presence has returned to Israel after many days (Hosea 3:4-5). It is a day when Israel at last seeks the Lord and their Messiah, David their king (Hosea 3:5, Jer 30:9). Like Jesus was in the cloud that protected Israel in the wilderness (I Cor 10:4), so Christ will return in the cloud in Israel, and Israel will finally recognize Jesus’ claims.



I agree that the mountain of the Lord’s house in Isa 2 is New Jerusalem in Rev 21, but the preterists do not believe either Isa 2 or Rev 21 is telling the truth. They do not believe it is literally a house, but is a symbol for the church. I don’t know how this helps their case that Revelation is all about the destruction of Jerusalem. I do not agree that either of these passages has any reference to the Destruction of Jerusalem. This is another of Preston’s hodge podge of scriptures that he erroneously applies to the DOJ. Acts 2:16-17 says the day of Pentecost was in the last days and thus defines Pentecost and after as being in the last days. Joel says The law of the Lord went forth from Zion and from Jerusalem went the word of the Lord, and that happened with the preaching of the gospel. Preston reasons that since Isa 2:2 is in the last days, the fulfillment of Isa 2:2 follows Pentecost and refers to the DOJ. I agree that the Spirit was poured out on all flesh in the last days (Act 2:18), and the word of the Lord went forth from Jerusalem as fulfillment of Micah 4:2. These things happened in the last days, and the day of the Lord follows Pentecost, but Preston goes on to conclude that not only did the last days arrive in AD 30, but the day of Lord also arrived in AD 70. Preston’s view is excluded by a consideration of Joel’s requirement that the moon is turned to blood and sun to darkness in the last days but before the great and notable day of the Lord will come. Those things did not happen at or before the DOJ. So, Peter says we are in the last days (Acts 2:16-17), but the harbingers of the day of the Lord have not yet arrived.



Preston says the descent of the tabernacle from heaven follows the day of the Lord and cites Rev 21:2ff. John does indeed call New Jerusalem the “tabernacle of God” (Rev 21:3), and its descent follows the day of the Lord, but it is no help to the preterist position that tries to make the DOJ is the day of the Lord. The day of the Lord comes after the moon is turned to blood appearance and the sun to darkness appearance (Joel 2:28), and the day of the Lord is the day Jesus returns (I Th 4:14-5:3, II Pet 3:10). The tabernacle of God comes down from heaven after Jesus returns, cleanses the earth with fire, and resurrects the dead (Rev 20:9-21:3). If Preston is correct, the DOJ would have to happen after all these things. There are three equal periods of earth history: 2000 years of the dispensation of the Patriarchs, 2000 yrs of the dispensation of the Law, and 2000 years of the dispensation of Christianity. The last days are the 2000 years of the dispensation of Christianity. The mountain of the Lord’s house will be established above (YNG version) the top of the mountains. The mountain of the Lord’s house and His tabernacle is New Jerusalem. New Jerusalem literally will descend in the last days at the end of 6000 earth years.

Fulfillment far off in last days (2:2) 

Fulfillment “must shortly come to pass” (22:6, 10, 12, etc.)

The last days probably began at the resurrection of Christ. That was nearly 700 years after Isaiah wrote. However, Isaiah said nothing about the last days being “far off”. Preston injects that idea into the narrative. He attempts thereby to cast the idea of the relative time statements like “must shortly come to pass” in terms of a human lifetime. We have already shown that is not valid through a consideration of the mountain of the Lord’s house that must come to rest above the hills in the last days. The mountain of the Lord’s house does not descend until after Jesus’ Second Coming and the Judgment (Mt 25:31, Rev 20:11, 21:1-27) in the beginning of the 7th day. The present age lasts 6000 years or six days (Barnabas 15:4). Since the end of the sixth day does not come until 6000 years of earth history, and the descent of God’s house does not come until after the sixth day, then the “shortly” terms in Revelation must be evaluated in this light. From a consideration of the fact that we are in the “last days”, from God’s perspective, the time is less than half of the whole 6000 year age of the earth, and from that perspective 2000 years would be “shortly”.

About James Johnson

Bible student for 60 years. Preacher of the gospel for over 40 years. Author of commentary on Revelation, All Power to the Lamb. Married with children. Worked in aerospace and computer engineering for over 40 years.
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