Q. Thank you for such a great site! Since Isaac Newton has predicted the world’s end in 2060, do you think it may be possible that the Rapture may not come till around that time? I say this because of two things. One, Brother Newton was a genius and instead of a generation being 40 to 70 years, it may actually be 120 years. Moses had three 40 year periods… Egypt, Midian period and wandering in the desert. It took Noah 120 years to build the ark and then God closed the door. The Rapture of the saints is a type of door closing also, which is based on that very last person being saved and only God knows the number. However, we don’t know the time or date for the Rapture, so can it be that a generation is a 120 years. From 1948, 120 years, minus 7 will be very close to 2060. This is only a thought and I hope I am wrong. We should always be a watchman on the wall.
A. Sir Isaac Newton took the year for a day concept from Ezekiel and applied it to a 1260 day prophecy out of Daniel making 1260 years. He believed that in 800 AD the Pope finally achieved supremacy over world affairs. He believed that the 1260 years corresponded to the duration of the corruption of the Church, so he added 1260 to 800 A.D. and arrived at 2060 as the date of the “fall of Babylon” or cessation of the apostate Church.
While 800 AD was a special year in Europe, there’s no Biblical significance to it, and the year for a day principle is not meant to have general application. In fact, taking the Daniel passages in context does not permit this kind of symbolic use.
By definition, a generation is the span of time between a man’s birth and the birth of his first child. In Biblical times this averaged out to be about 40 years. It has nothing to do with a man’s lifespan, which declined from 969 at its longest (Methuselah) to the 70-80 years described in Psalm 90:10. (This was caused by the collapse of the water vapor canopy that surrounded the Earth before the flood.) Noah lived for 900 years, Shem for 600, Abraham for 175 and Moses for 120 and so on. If you read the story of Moses’ life carefully you’ll see that he lived through 3 of the 4 generations from his birth to the arrival of the Jews in the Promised Land. God had prophesied this in Genesis 15:16.
Matt. 24:34 says, in effect, that the generation being born when the end times signs began would still be alive at their completion. It does not say that all the signs would be fulfilled in one generation, but in the lifetimes of those being born when they begin. If you start with the major sign that has triggered the beginning of the end (the re-birth of Israel) you can reasonably conclude that all end times signs including the 2nd Coming will take place by approximately 2018.