Robycop3, I find your reply #89 to be really deluded regarding the post-exilic return of the scattered tribes. You state that they were not really scattered that much until Hadrian, but that opinion contradicts Cyrus’ decree. He sent out his decree in Ezra 1:1-3 to every nation under his control in the whole habitable world at that time, encouraging the return of the tribes’ families to Jerusalem to rebuild their temple. Sorry, but the texts you present of a regathering of the tribes back to Israel are NOT referring to modern-day events, but to the return after 70 years of captivity under the Babylonians.
And Rella, your objections to a fulfilled “no more SEA” in our current New Heavens and New Earth are not taking Jewish terminology into consideration. John was not talking about oceanography and maritime realities. To the Jews of old, the SEA typically referred to pagan Gentile nations, just as the LAND typically referred to their own promised land of Canaan where the tribes of Israel had their inheritance.
This is why John pronounced woe in Rev. 12:12 upon the inhabitants of the LAND (of Israel), and upon the inhabitants of the SEA (pagan Gentile nations). He was not warning sharks, plankton, and jellyfish of coming disasters by the Satanic realm at that time.
Isaiah 60:5 also made the same comparison of the SEA to GENTILE NATIONS when he said that the “abundance of the SEA” would be converted to the Lord, by the “forces of the GENTILES” coming to the Lord.
You’re not the only one getting this issue confused, Rella. A Furman university professor I used to go to church with also had the same idea you have about “no more sea” meaning no more oceans existing in the world. As a great fan of vacations to the oceanside, they were greatly relieved to see (by the scriptures I just gave) that God was not promising in Rev. 21:1 to get rid of the oceans on this planet.
And I notice that no one above gave the year when all those miraculous signs appeared in the heavens and the temple that were recorded by Tacitus and Josephus. Josephus said these miraculous signs took place “...BEFORE the Jews rebellion, and BEFORE those commotions which preceded the war...” (Wars 6.5.3/290-291). The priests taking note of these signs interpreted them to “portend those events that immediately followed it” (meaning the Jewish rebellion started by the Zealots and the Roman / Jewish war).
So these signs of armies in the skies, the star looking like a sword hanging over Jerusalem, the bright light around the altar during the night, the heavy temple gate opening by itself, the heifer giving birth to a lamb in the temple on the way to being sacrificed, and the tumult and quaking of a great multitude leaving the temple saying “Let us depart hence” - all these occurred in AD 66 before Eleazar jump-started the rebellion against Rome late that year.
This great multitude departing the temple in AD 66 at Pentecost was not DEMONIC forces leaving the temple. It was RIGHTEOUS angels leaving it just before Jerusalem became a “prison” (phulake) that confined every unclean spirit without exception within its walls, according to Rev. 18:2 and Isaiah 24:21-22. The righteous angels were “getting out of Dodge”, as it were, before it was given over to hordes of imprisoned demons and those they tormented - the “seven-fold” numbers of devils that Christ had predicted would come upon that same wicked generation in its “last state” (Matt. 12:43-45).
This occasion of the sound of the great multitude of righteous angels leaving the temple at Pentecost was also dated to begin the 5 months of demon-inspired torment put upon the citizens of Judea (Rev. 9:3-11). God allowed this so that they would be compelled in desperation to revolt against their abuse by governor Gessius Florus and his Roman troops.
This EXIT of the righteous multitude from the temple in AD 66 at Pentecost (Wars 6.5.3/299-300) was polar opposite to the Pentecost of Acts 2, which sound of a rushing mighty wind brought the fullness of the Spirit’s power INTO the Temple to rest on the believers assembled there.
I have often heard Full Preterists suggest that these heavenly apparitions and miraculous signs in the temple cited by Josephus and Tacitus were signs that Christ had just accomplished His return, and that these were the only physical manifestations of that return. That idea is not quite on target date wise. Christ did not bodily return for the bodily resurrection of His saints until Pentecost of AD 70 - not AD 66.