The Revelation of St. John in Fausset's Bible Dictionary

Authorship and authenticity. The writer calls himself John (Revelation 1:1; Revelation 1:4; Revelation 1:9; Revelation 22:8). Justin Martyr (Dial. 308, A.D. 139-161) quotes it as the apostle John's work, referring to the millennium and general resurrection and judgment. Justin held his controversy with the learned Jew Trypho at Ephesus, John's residence 35 years previously; he says "the Revelation was given to John, one of the twelve apostles of Christ." Melito, bishop of Sardis (A.D. 171), one of the seven churches whose angel was reproved (Revelation 3:1), is said by Eusebius (H.E. iv. 26) to have written on the Revelation of John. So, Theophilus of Antioch (A.D. 180) quoted from the Revelation of John (Eusebius iv. 26), also Apollonius of Asia Minor in the end of the second century. Irenaeus (A.D. 195), a hearer of Polycarp (John's disciple, probably the angel of the Smyrnean church, Usher), quotes repeatedly Revelation as the apostle John's writing (Haer. iv. 20, section 11; 21, section 3; 30, section 4; 5:26, section 1; 30, section 3; 35, section 2). In v. 30, section 1 he quotes the beast's number 666 (Revelation 13:18) as in all the old copies, and orally confirmed to him by persons who had seen John, adding "we do not hazard a confident theory as to Antichrist's name, for if it had been necessary that his name should be proclaimed openly at this present time it would have been declared by him who saw the apocalyptic vision, for it was seen not long ago, but almost in our generation, toward the end of Domitian's reign." In writing "against heresies" ten years after Polycarp's martyrdom he quotes Revelation 20 times as inspired Scripture. These are testimonies of those contemporary with John's immediate successors, and connected with the region of the seven churches to which Revelation is addressed. Tertullian of northern Africa (A.D. 220, Adv. Marcion iii. 14, 24) quotes the apostle John's description of the sword proceeding out of Christ's mouth (Revelation 19:15), and the heavenly city (Revelation 21). See also De Resurr. 27; De Anima 8:9; De Praescr. Haeretic, 33...

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