High Priest Before AD 70

by Terry Wane Benton

Our AD 70 Hyper Preterists claim that the kingdom came in AD 70 and that Jesus did not begin His reign until that point in time when the temple was destroyed in Jerusalem in AD 70. Further, they have two laws and two systems operating from AD 30-70. They have both laws in place and are fully binding by God. This would mean that Jews were fully bound to keep following the Levitical priest system while also following Jesus as High Priest. They would be bound by the dietary rules of the Old Testament while also being free to eat all meats under Christ. They sin and don’t sin in the same acts.

Here are some facts that totally refute the Hyper-preterists:

  • People were translated into the kingdom long before AD 70 (Colossians 1:13). Therefore, the kingdom came before AD 70.
  • Christ came (past tense) as High Priest (Hebrews 9:11). This would have been unlawful for Jesus to do before AD 70 when they say Jesus removed the law and the prophets. If Jesus became High Priest before fulfilling the law, then He lied in Matthew 5:17f. Hyper-preterists say that AD 70 was when the law and prophets were completely fulfilled. Jesus could not, according to them, divert people from obeying the Law until it was all fulfilled. But they misapply this passage in an effort to deny the Law of Moses was fulfilled and nailed to the cross (Colossians 2:13-16; Ephesians 2:15). Jesus could not be a lawful High Priest without first a “change of the Law” (Hebrews 7:11-12). The fact that Jesus “changed the Law” way before AD 70 and became our High Priest, proves that whatever He needed to “fulfill” first was fulfilled before AD 70. That change of Law took place at Pentecost AD 30, not at AD 70.
  • Christ came (past tense) with a greater and more perfect tabernacle (Hebrews 9:11) long before AD 70. But, the reformation from an earthly to a spiritual tabernacle could not be lawful if the old tabernacle was still binding. If Jesus set up a new tabernacle, then all Jews were obligated to leave the old earthly tabernacle and become part of the new spiritual tabernacle. All Jews were obligated to Jesus when Jesus started His church, and no Jews were obligated to keep the earthly covenant and tabernacle going. Whatever Jesus needed to “fulfill” in order to change the Law, was fulfilled long before AD 70.
  • Jesus came with His own blood (Hebrews 9:12). The blood of bulls and goats were no longer needed or required when Jesus came with His own blood. But, Jesus came with His own blood and washed away sins long before AD 70. Therefore, whatever Jesus needed to “fulfill” in order to change the Law and start applying His own blood, was completed by Pentecost AD 30, 40 years before the fall of Jerusalem in AD 70.
  • He entered the Most Holy Place once for all (Hebrews 9:12). This was to obtain eternal redemption for all. No animal sacrifice was required after this point. Therefore, two laws were not requiring two different things once Jesus entered the Most Holy Place once for all. Whatever needed to be fulfilled before Jesus could lawfully “change the Law” and provide eternal redemption by His High Priestly activity of going into the real Most Holy Place was fulfilled at Pentecost of AD 30. Nothing was provided in AD 70 that pertained to our eternal redemption. Jesus provided it all when He entered the Most Holy place in AD 30.
  • Jesus has an unchangeable priesthood (Hebrews 7:24) and this was before AD 70. He did not begin one later, in AD 70. He has one that began around AD 30. “We have such a High Priest  who is seated at the right hand of the Majesty in the heavens” (Hebrews 8:1). His work was already in progress.
  • The “true tabernacle” was already erected (Hebrews 8:2) long before AD 70. No one was obligated to keep using the earthly, symbolic tabernacle. Unbelief was the only reason Jews were still using it. God was not holding them under obligation to keep it going.
  • He is the Mediator of a better covenant (Hebrews 8:6). No one was obligated to the inferior covenant once the better covenant was in place. The new covenant was in place after Jesus died on the cross (Hebrews 9:15-17). When the better High Priest and a better covenant were lawfully in place, the old system was not binding at all. The only thing that kept Jews going to the earthly Levitical priests was unbelief. God was not obligating them to keep it going till AD 70.
  • He was king at the same time that He was High Priest. According to the prophecy of Zechariah 6 and Psalms 110, He would be king and Priest at the same time. Priest on His throne, and in place as such “after the order of Melchizedek” (who was king and priest in one). So, you cannot have Jesus as an active High Priest in AD 30 but not an active king until AD 70. No! He was king and priest at the same time. “Now both Lord and Christ (Anointed)” (Acts 2:36). The counsel of peace (Zechariah 6:13) comes from Jesus being both king and priest. The counsel of peace was issued in the remission of sins that began to be enjoyed in Acts 2:38ff. If peace was enjoyed, it was because Jesus was both king and priest from Pentecost (Acts 2) forward. If people rejoiced in having remission of sins before AD 70, then Jesus was king and priest before AD 70. This is further proof that the AD 70 brethren are in grave error. If Jesus was High Priest in action long before AD 70, then He was king long before AD 70. This is another powerful scripture blow to their whole stack of cards.

The Hyper-preterist would like us to think that there were two laws bound upon Jews by an obligation of God for a forty-year period. That would be impossible! You cannot be obligated to two systems at the same time. You cannot be obligated to believe in Jesus as the High Priest and Mediator of a better covenant and at the same time be responsible to keep the earthly, Levitical priesthood going and supplying animal sacrifices under an inferior system and law. They twist a lot of scriptures to try to make their theory work, but it does not work.

The premise that every kind of promise in the Old Testament had to be fulfilled before the Law of commandments could cease to be binding is not true (Ephesians 2:15). If it was true, then Jesus sinned by abolishing many portions of the Law before every promise was fulfilled. You don’t want to go further with that idea. Further, every promise was not fulfilled in AD 70. Some prophecies of the fall of Rome were fulfilled after AD 70. But every command had to be fulfilled by Jesus in order to be a perfect offering. When Jesus filled up the requirements of the Law, He filled up the typological offerings and set in motion the new and better covenant, and He did that before AD 70. Jesus removed the obligation to the temple and its earthly priesthood at the cross, and then He visibly removed that system corrupted by unbelief in AD 70. The obligation was to Jesus, His superior covenant and provisions from Pentecost forward. Do not let men deceive you!

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