These two somewhat related Greek words are seriously misunderstood
and misused in extant and casual Christian theology, and thus the usage
fosters and helps to maintain significantly false concepts and doctrines.
Definition/Description of Parousia and Apocalypse
The word “Parousia” means the effectual display of a royal or official
public presence, hence not so much a specific arrival nor relocation of
proximity in time nor space. THE great important display or Parousia has already taken place, and it went largely unrecognized and unappreciated.
1. PAROUSIA. (3952) This word occurs twenty-four times in the New Testament. It comes
from the verb PAREMI which means "at hand," "to be present." The noun
signifies "Presence." This verb emphasizes the actual personal presence of the one
who comes. "Be patient unto the COMING (presence) of the Lord" (James 5:7).
PAROUSIA never indicates the act of coming or the arrival of a person, but denotes the
presence of one who has already arrived. The Vine's dictionary incorrectly defines
Parousia as either presence or coming. Vine introduced this error to support his strong
belief in the pre-tribulation rapture doctrine. Consider: I am present, here and now, with I am coming
but I am not here but will be sometime. These are opposite meanings. Greek is a
very precise language. If the bible says present it means present not I am coming. Parousia
can never be translated as coming or second coming. If the Greek authors of
scripture wanted to say coming they would have used the word ERCHOMAI. Matt 24:3, 24:27,
24:37, 24:39, 1 Cor 15:23, 16:7, 2 Cor 7:6, 7:7, 10:10, Phil 1:26, 2:12, 1 Thes
2:19, 3:13, 4:15, 5:23, 2 Thes 2:1, 2:8, 2:9, James 5:7, 5:8, 2 Pet 1:16, 3:4, 3:12, 1 John 2:28
The word “Apocalypse” means an uncovering or revealing, hence not so
much a dramatic one, but one that cuts through all the confusion or
mystery. It definitely does NOT mean or even imply a
destructive event, but simply the end of something being hidden or covered
up and unrecognized. This false meaning of an age-ending destruction comes from the fanciful
events described in the NT book of Revelation.
Actually, THE great Apocalypse of God has
already taken place, and it went and still is largely unrecognized and unappreciated
for what it was.
It signaled not the end of time, nor the end of the world nor the end of an
earthly empire, but rather the end of a spiritual age and the dawning of a
new one. The next great apocalypse will be the unveiling of the true
understanding of, and the entering into, the
kingship of the heavens.
2. APOKALUPSIS. (602) This word comes from the verb APOKALUPTO meaning "to uncover,
"unveil," and stresses the appearing or revelation of one by means of an
uncovering or unveiling. It is the disclosure of one who has been hidden
Christendom has continued to misuse these terms for far too long, yet few
think that the majority of scholars and clerics can be so wrong as to not
even use these important terms clearly.