Be sure to read the previous article in which we demonstrated the overwhelming sense of imminence of the end in 1 Peter. We presented this in our ongoing study of the question of whether Job 19:25-26 predicted an end time resurrection, as affirmed by some folks.
In my formal public debate with Joel McDurmon (July 2012) he argued at length that Job did predict such a resurrection. Be sure to read the earlier articles in which I set forth the problem of the translation of Job 19:25-26. McDurmon just scoffed at the incredibly difficult translational issues, claiming– contra some of the greatest Hebrew linguistics in history– that the translational issues are in fact “a piece of cake.” Anyone even remotely familiar with the translational issues knows that this is ridiculous.
The last article and this one, is focused on the premise that if (a huge “If”) Job 19:25-26 foretold an end time resurrection, then when we come to the NT, and find the NT writers affirming that they were living in, the last days foretold by the OT prophets, that this conclusively confines the fulfillment of Job to the first century. Be sure to read the previous article.
Job 19:25-26– In Light of 1 Peter
In the aforementioned debate with McDurmon, I took note of Peter’s use of the anaphoric article in 4:17:
“For the time has come for judgment to begin at the house of God; and if it begins with us first, what will be the end of those who do not obey the gospel of God?”
We need to note that the text literally reads “the (appointed time, from kairos) time has come for “the judgment” (to krino) to begin.” Peter definitely uses the definite article to refer to the judgment, and this is critical. Let me make a very important point here about the definite article as used by Peter.
Peter, Job 19:25-26 and the Anaphoric Article
The apostle uses what is known as the anaphoric article. The anaphoric article is the preponderant use of the definite article in the Greek (Daniel B. Wallace, Greek Grammar Beyond Basics: An Exegetical Syntax Of The N.T., (Grand Rapids, Zondervan, 1996)218).
What the use of the anaphoric article means is that a speaker or writer would mention a subject. Later, when discussing that subject, they would use the definite article to point back (suggested by the prefix “ana”) to that earlier introduced subject. What this means is that “the judgment” of v. 17– the judgment which had arrived– was the judgment of v. 5! This is irrefutably true, and the significance of this should never be overlooked!
Simply stated, Peter’s use of the anaphoric article in verse 17 means that he was affirming, in unequivocal manner, that the time for the judgment, the judgment of the living and the dead of v. 5, had arrived.
I made this argument at least twice during the debate with McDurmon. I took note that the judgment of the living and the dead is, undeniably, the time of the resurrection (cf. Matthew 25:31f; 2 Timothy 4:1). I also took note of Revelation 11 and the prediction of the judgment of the nations and the living and the dead, pointing out that Joel applies that prophecy to AD 70.
Joel never responded, in any way, to the connection between Job, 1 Peter and Revelation 11. He never commented on Peter’s affirmations of the nearness of “the end of all things.” He ignored Peter’s use of the anaphoric article and his undeniable statement that the time for the judgment of the living and the dead had arrived. Be sure to get your own copy of my debate with McDurmon. It contains a wealth of information.
Now, what all of this means is that any attempt to posit Job 19:25-26 as predictive of a resurrection distinct and different from that predicted by Peter is false. Unless a person can substantively delineate between the time of the end in Job and Peter, then Peter establishes the time for the resurrection foretold in Job as the first century (if one even grants that Job foretold a resurrection for the last days).
Unless someone can prove that the resurrection to the eternal inheritance ascribed to the resurrection of Job 19, and the eternal inheritance that was about to be revealed in Peter’s day, then Peter settles the issue of Job 19.
Unless someone can prove that Peter had a different judgment of the living and the dead, at the end of all things, from the supposed resurrection and judgment of the living and the dead, at the end of all things in Job, then Peter settles the issue of Job. The time for that resurrection had arrived.
Peter’s unequivocal, unambiguous declaration that the time had arrived for the resurrection foretold by the prophets, at the time of the end, truly is a “piece of cake.” There is no Biblical authority for extending the resurrection to the future. It violates what Peter declared through inspiration.
What we have seen in this series on Job 19:25-26 is that first of all, it tenuous at best to find there a prediction of an end times resurrection.
Job 19:25-26– Our Summary
We have shown that there are huge, insurmountable translational issues that deny that application of Job 19:25-26. Modern scholarship is virtually unanimous in rejecting that application of Job.
We have demonstrated that even if one were to grant, for argument sake, that Job foretold the resurrection in the last days, that the NT writers undeniably affirm that they were living in the predicted last days and that the resurrection was near.
We have shown from 1 Peter specifically, how the time for the reception of the eternal inheritance, at the parousia and judgment of the living and the dead, was at hand.
We have demonstrated linguistically that Peter’s use of the anaphoric article in 1 Peter 4:17 is a “nail in the coffin” of any claim for a future resurrection. So, Job 19:25-26 did not predict a fleshly, bodily resurrection for the last days. But, even if one did acknowledge that Job foretold a resurrection for the “last days” the last days were fulfilled in the first century.