Chronology of Mankind: 6,000 Years of History, Part II :: By Randy Nettles

In Part I of A Chronology of Mankind, 6,000 Years of History, we reviewed Epochs 1-6, which covered 3,030 years of history. Part II will cover Epochs 7-12, which covers 1,242 years.

Epoch 7: The death of Solomon to the destruction of Jerusalem and the Temple: 931-930 BC to 586-585 BC = 345 years

By adding all the reigns of each of the kings of Judah (after Solomon’s death) mentioned in Kings and Chronicles, we have a total of 345 years. The year in which a king came to the throne was known as his accession year. His first regnal year, i.e., the first full year of the king’s reign, began on the first day of the new year following his accession.

The period between his actual accession and the next new year’s day was known as the beginning of the reign. Israel, in common with other near eastern nations, commenced the new year on the first of Nisan (our March – April), its first king, Jeroboam, having come from Egypt (1 Kings 12:2-3) where the new year began in the spring. Judah, however, commenced the new year on the first of Tishri (our September-October). Where two dates overlap, a coregency is indicated. Regnal years are used.

[Note: Read Edwin R. Thiele’s excellent book, The Mysterious Numbers of the Hebrew Kings, regarding the chronology of the kings of Judah and Israel.] It is deemed the definitive work and reckoning of the calendar years on this topic. The following kings of Judah list is from his calculations. I have added notes regarding some of the prophets of God and their writings.]

Rehoboam – 930-913 BC – 1 Kings 14:21-31; 2 Chr. 9:31

Abijam (Abijah) – 913-910 BC – 1 Kings 15:1-6; 2 Chr.13:1-22

Asa – 910-869 BC – 1 Kings 15:9-24; 2 Chr.14-16

Jehoshaphat – 872-848 BC (includes co-regency time) – 1 Kings 22:41-50; 2 Chr.17-20

Jehoram (Joram) – 853-841 BC – 2 Kings 8:16-24; 2 Chr.21:1-2; he reigned concurrently with his father four years – 2 Kings 8:16; 2 Chr. 21:1-5; 2 Kings 9:29; 8:25

The prophet Elijah was “taken up” (raptured) in approximately 853-852 BC. See: Three Raptures, Vol. II: Elijah :: By Pete Garcia and Randy Nettles – Rapture Ready

Ahaziah – 841 BC – 2 Kings 8:25-9:29; 2 Chr.22:1-2

Queen Athaliah – 841-835 BC – 2 Kings 11:1-20; 2 Chr.22-23

Joash – 835-796 BC – 2 Kings 11-12; 2 Chr.24:1-27

Amaziah – 796-767 BC – 2 Kings 14:1-20; 2 Chr.25:1-28

Azariah (Uzziah) – 792-740 BC (includes overlap reign time with Amaziah – 2 Kin.15:1-7; 2 Chr. 26:1-23 – Note: Amos writes his prophecy in approximately 754 BC. Rome is founded in 753 BC.

Jotham – 750-732 BC (Includes coregency time with Uzziah – 2 Kings 15:32-38; 2 Chr.27:1-9 – Note: Isaiah is commissioned as a prophet in 740 BC.

Ahaz – 735-715 BC (includes overlap reign time with Jotham) – 2 Kin.16:1-20; 2 Chr.28:1-27 – Note: Jonah goes to Nineveh in 725 BC. The same year Assyria invades the northern nation of Israel and begins a three-year siege ending with the destruction of the northern kingdom of Israel and the relocation of the remaining population in 722 BC. For more information on the kings of Judah (from Rehoboam to Ahaz), see my article The Fullness of Sin: Part 4 :: By Randy Nettles – Rapture Ready

Hezekiah – 715-686 BC – 2 Kin.18-20; 2 Chr.29-32; Isa.36-39 – Note: The prophet Hosea writes his book in approximately 715-710 BC. Micah writes his prophecy in 700 BC. The prophet Isaiah writes his book in approximately 700–685 BC.

Manasseh – 696-642 BC (includes coregency time with Hezekiah – 2 Kings 21:1-18; 2 Chr.33:1-20

Amon – 642-640 BC – 2 Kings 21:19-26; 2 Chr.33:21-25

Josiah – 640-609 BC – 2 Kings 22, 23:1-30; 2 Chr.34-35 – Note: Zephaniah writes his book in approximately 635 BC. Jeremiah is called by God to be a prophet in 626 BC. and writes his book in approximately 626-580 BC. Nahum writes his prophecy in 615 BC.

Jehoahaz (Shallum) – 609 BC – 2 Kings 23:31-34; 2 Chr.36:1-4; Jer.22:1-12

Jehoiakim (Eliakim) – 609-598 BC – 2 Kings 23:34-37; 2 Chr36:4-8. Jer. 22:13-23, 26:36 – Note: Habakkuk writes his prophecy in 605 BC, and Jeremiah prophesies a 70-year captivity the same year. The first group of Jews is deported to Babylon in this year.

Jehoiachin (Coniah) – 598-597 BC – 2 Kings 24:8-17; 2 Chr.36:9-10; Jer.22:24-30, 52:31-34 – Note: The second wave of Jews are deported to Babylon in 597 BC.

Zedekiah (Mattaniah) 597-586 BC – 2 Kings 24:17-20, 25:1-7; 2 Chr.36:11-21; Jer.39:1-10, 52:1-11 – Ezekiel receives a glorious vision of God and is commissioned to be a prophet in 593 BC. For more information on the kings of Judah (from Hezekiah to Zedekiah), see my article The Fullness of Sin: Part 5 :: By Randy Nettles – Rapture Ready

The destruction of Jerusalem and the Temple occurred on the 9th day of Av in 586 BC by King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon and his army. Many tragic events took place on the 9th day of Av in the history of the Jewish people. For more information, go to: Zedekiah was the last king of Judah. He reigned for 11 years. The people of the southern kingdom of Judah were killed or removed to Babylon. Only the very poor remained behind in Judah.

3,030 years (epochs 1- 6) + 345 years (epoch 7) = 3,375 years

Epoch 8: The destruction of the first temple to the finished construction of the second temple: 586-585 BC to 516-515 BC = 70 years

The destruction of Jerusalem and the Temple occurred in 586 BC. The third group of Jews was deported to Babylon in 586 BC. Jeremiah writes Lamentations in 580 BC. Ezekiel receives a vision of a glorious future temple in 573 BC (Ezekiel 40). Daniel receives a vision of four kingdoms/beasts (Daniel 7) in 553 BC. The construction of the second Temple was finished in 516 BC. Both dates are well established in secular histories as 586-585 and 516-515 BC. There were 70 years from the destruction of the first Temple (Jer. 52:12-13) in the “nineteenth year of Nebuchadnezzar” (Jer. 52:12) and “eleventh year of Zedekiah’s reign” (2 Kings 25:2); to the building of the second temple “in the sixth year of the reign of Darius” (Ezra 6:15).

Destruction of the first Temple – Year 3375 from creation – 586 BC – Jeremiah 52:12-13, 25:1, Daniel 2:1

Babylon falls to the Medes and Persians (led by Cyrus II/the Great) – Year 3422 from creation – 539 BC – Daniel 5 – Note: Thus the 1st Babylonian kingdom/beast (of Daniel’s vision) falls before the might of the 2nd Medo-Persian Kingdom/beast.

Sheshbazzar, the prince of Israel, leads the Jewish exiles from Babylon back to Jerusalem – Year 3424 from creation – 537 BC – Ezra 1

Reconstruction of Jewish Temple begins – Year 3425 from creation – 536 BC – Ezra 2 – Note: After several years, they stopped construction due to opposition from surrounding nations. The work on the Temple remained dormant for well over a decade until God called the prophets Haggai and Zechariah to urge the people to complete the project. Haggai wrote his book in 520 BC…the same year Zechariah began to preach. The work on the Temple resumed under Darius, the king of Persia, in 520 BC. The foundation of the Second

Temple was laid on Kislev 24, 520 BC.

The second Temple is rebuilt in the 6th year of King Darius – Year 3445 from creation – 516 BC – 2 Chronicles 36:21,23

3375 years (epochs 1-7) + 70 years (epoch 8) = 3,445 years

Epoch 9: From the sixth year of King Darius the Mede (when the second Temple was finished) to the Persian king Artaxerxes’ decree to rebuild the walls of Jerusalem: 516 BC to 444 BC = 72 years

There were three different decrees issued by the Medes/Persian kings regarding rebuilding Jerusalem and/or the Tempe. Cyrus issued a decree in 538 BC regarding the rebuilding of the Temple in Jerusalem (Ezra 1:1-2). This wasn’t the decree we’re looking for because Dan. 9:25 speaks of the rebuilding of the city, Jerusalem, including the streets and walls, not merely the Temple. The people resisted this decree and stopped work on the Temple until the second year of Darius (See Ezra 4:4-5, 24.)

Darius issued a decree in 520 BC and ordered the construction of the Temple to continue (Ezra 6:11-12). Again, this decree was for the Temple, not the city. The Temple was completed by the sixth year of Darius (Ezra 6:14-15), so this could not be the decree spoken of by Daniel. Counting the prophecy from these dates would place us well before Christ’s life.

When Nehemiah arrived in Jerusalem, everybody was already at work building Jerusalem (Neh. 2:16) under the authority of the decree they had received thirteen years earlier from Ezra. Nehemiah finished his work in 52 days (Neh.6:15). The city and walls had been rebuilt much earlier, and Nehemiah merely repaired some recent damage to the gates and walls.

Actually, once you determine the date of the decree of Artaxerxes (in his seventh year), then it is easy to determine the date of Nehemiah’s commission since it was in the 20th year of Artaxerxes (Neh.2:1). Nehemiah 1:1-2 shows that Nehemiah’s brother came from Susa in December (Chislev) to report the sad situation in Jerusalem. Four months later (Nisan), in the spring of 444 BC, Artaxerxes’ 20th year, the king gave permission for Nehemiah to go to Jerusalem (Neh.2:1-8).

The second Temple was rebuilt in the sixth year of King Darius – Year 3445 from creation – 516 BC – Ezra 6:15.

Esther becomes Queen of Persia by marrying King Ahasuerus (Xeres) – Year 3482 from creation – 479 BC – Esther 1-2.

Xeres allows the Jews to defend themselves against the plot of Haman – Year 3487 from creation – 474 BC – Esther 1-8. First Purim celebration is observed the next year in 473 BC.

Ezra arrives in Jerusalem to be in charge of Jewish affairs (teaching the law of God to the Jews and setting up judges) on behalf of King Artaxerxes and the Persian government. Ezra read the Law to the returning exiles on the 1st day of the 7th month, on the Feast of Trumpets, and the people understood and believed. This marked a new beginning for Israel as they accepted God’s covenant once again. – Year 3503 from creation – 458 BC – Ezra 7

King Artaxerxes’ decree to rebuild the walls of Jerusalem under the leadership of Nehemiah– Year 3517 from creation – 444 BC – Nehemiah 2:1

3445 years (epochs 1-8) + 72 years (epoch 9) = 3,517 years

Epoch 10: Artaxerxes’ decree to rebuild Jerusalem to “Palm” Sunday before Jesus’ crucifixion: 444 BC to AD 33 = 476 years (Daniel 9:24-26)

The decree given by Artaxerxes to Nehemiah in 444 BC (Neh. 2) was the starting point of Daniel’s 70th Week/Sevens prophecy recorded in the book of Daniel. “Know therefore and understand, that from the going forth of the commandment to restore and to build Jerusalem unto the Messiah the Prince shall be seven weeks (49 years), and threescore and two weeks (434 years): the street shall be built again, and the wall, even in troublous times. And after threescore and two weeks shall Messiah be cut off, but not for himself: and the people of the prince that shall come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary; and the end thereof shall be with a flood, and unto the end of the war desolations are determined” (Daniel 9:25-26).

The end of this part of the prophecy occurred in AD 33 when Jesus was “cut off” from being King of the Jews. This occurred on Nisan 10, on a Sunday (now known as Palm Sunday), fulfilling the prophecy of Daniel 9:25-26. Daniel 9:24 (Jesus’ second coming to establish His millennium kingdom) and Daniel 9:27 (the last 7 years of the “Tribulation” before Jesus returns) have yet to be fulfilled.

Four days later (Thursday) AD 33 Nisan 14, the Lord Jesus was crucified on a Feast of Passover. Three days later (Sunday) AD 33 Nisan 17, Jesus was resurrected back to life on a Feast of Firstfruits, fulfilling His prophecy of Matthew 12:39-40.

The first part of Daniel’s prophecy (Daniel 9:25-26) consists of 483 total years of 360 days per year…not our current solar calendar of 365.2422 days per year. The 360-day per-year calendar (called the prophetic calendar) was the one that Daniel was referring to when he gave his prophecy. The only other time/s in the Old Testament that this 360-day calendar was referred to was during the flood of Noah, Genesis 7 and 8 and possibly Genesis 29:27-30.

Daniel 9:24-26 and Genesis 29: 27-30 are the only two times in the Bible that the word “weeks” is used as a term for 7 years (360 days per year). However, when reckoning cumulative years for Bible chronology, we use the solar calendar and thus the 476 years. For more details, see my article Ancient Calendars, Feast Days, & Daniel 12:11: Part 3 :: By Randy Nettles (

King Artaxerxes decrees rebuilding Jerusalem -Year 3517 from creation – 444 BC – Nehemiah 2:1 – Note: Nehemiah, the cupbearer to King Artaxerxes of Persia, approached the king regarding rebuilding the walls and gate in Jerusalem. Ezra, the Jewish priest, led the people to pray and repent; the people responded with a will to accomplish the task. The wall was completed in 52 days.

1 and 2 Chronicles were written (possibly by Ezra) in 440 BC. The books of Nehemiah and Malachi were written in 430 BC.

Alexander the Great conquers Palestine (the new name for the land of Judah) and becomes a province of the Greek Empire– Year 3629 from creation – 332 BC – Note: Alexander defeats Darius at Gaugamela in 331 BC, thus the 3rd Greek kingdom/beast (of Daniel’s vision) defeats the 2nd kingdom/beast of the Persians. The Greeks go on to defeat most of the known world. Alexander’s reign is short-lived as he dies in 323 BC. The kingdom is divided up into four parts by his generals. The same year (323 BC), Ptolemy I controls Palestine and, in 319 BC, conquers Jerusalem. In 311 BC, Seleucus I Nicator conquers Babylon and begins the Seleucid dynasty.

Scriptures of the Hebrew and Aramaic Pentateuch are translated into Greek Septuagint translation – Year 3711 from creation – 250 BC.

Antiochus III of the Seleucid dynasty of Syria gains complete control of Palestine – Year 3763 from creation – 198 BC – verified by the Jewish historian Josephus.

Antiochus Epiphanes ends the Jews’ “sacrifices and atonements” in the Temple of God on Kislev 24 167 BC. First abomination of desolation occurs on December 25, 167 BC by the Seleucid king Antiochus IV Epiphanes – Year 3794 from creation – 167 BC – Book of Maccabees.

Judas Maccabeus, a Jewish priest, leads a revolt against the Syrians – Year 3795 from creation – 166 BC.

Recapture of the Jewish Temple and cleansing of the sanctuary led by Judas Maccabeus on Kislev 24, 164 BC. This great event took place on the 24th day of the ninth month (Jewish calendar), exactly 3 years to the day after Antiochus IV had forced the ending of the daily sacrifice. – Year 3797 from creation – 164 BC

Brief history of the Maccabean dynasty: Judas Maccabeus defeats the Seleucid general Nicanor in 161 BC and dies the same year. Judas’ son Jonathan becomes the leader. In approximately 142 BC, Simon Maccabeus succeeded his brother Jonathan as the high priest and ruler of Judea. After the death of Simon, his son John Hyrcanus came to power in 134 BC. John Hyrcanus died in 104 BC and was succeeded by his son Aristobulus I, who ruled for 1 year and died in 102 BC. His brother Alexander Janneus succeeded him as high priest and proclaimed himself king. He married Salome Alexandra, the widow of Aristobulus. Janneus was an excellent military commander, and at the end of his reign, he ruled more territory than any Judean king had since Solomon. He died in battle in 76 BC, and his wife ascended to the throne.

Salome Alexandra ascended to the throne as queen of Judea, and peace marked her 10-year reign. Upon Salome’s death in 67 BC, civil war over the throne began between her sons Aristobulus II and Hyrcanus II. The civil war lasted for several years until the Roman general Pompey conquered Jerusalem in 63 BC after a 3-month siege and reinstated Hyrcanus II as high priest. Julius Caesar is assassinated on March 15, 44 BC. His grandnephew, Gaius Octavian, eventually overcame Mark Anthony and consolidated his power in 30 BC. He was later called Caesar Augustus. It was under his reign that Jesus Christ was born.

Julius Caesar, the Roman emperor, proposed to reform the old Roman calendar in 46 BC. It took effect on January 1, 45 BC by edict and was called the Julian calendar. The Julian calendar became the predominant calendar throughout the empire and the Western world for more than 1,600 years until Pope Gregory XIII initiated the Gregorian calendar, which is still in use today.

Hyrcanus II ruled Palestine, along with the Idumean (Edomite) regent, Antipater, until 40 BC when he was removed by Aristobulus’s son, Antigonus, with help from the Parthians. Herod, the son of Antipater, was governor of Palestine at this time and had to flee to Rome to seek help from Octavian and Mark Antony, who declared Herod the rightful (puppet) king.

Herod returned to Jerusalem with two legions of Roman soldiers in 37 BC and laid siege to Jerusalem for six months until Jerusalem fell to Rome. The Romans beheaded Antigonus, and Herod married Hyrcanus’s granddaughter to strengthen his right to the throne in the eyes of the Judeans. He became King of Judea in 37 BC.

In 30 BC, Herod charged Hyrcanus with treason and executed him in order to prevent the Roman emperor Octavian Caesar “Augustus” from placing any descendants of the Maccabees in charge of Palestine (Judea).

Herod (called the Great) began his restoration and renovation of the Temple in 19 BC.

Caesar Augustus issues a decree for all Judeans to return to their homelands for the purpose of a census in 6 BC.

Birth of Jesus Christ – Year 3956 from creation – 5 BC – Mathew 2; Luke 2:1-20

Herod the Great dies in the year 4 BC, and his son, Herod Agrippa I, becomes the new king.

Tiberius Caesar begins his official reign (not co-reign) in the fall of AD 14 as emperor of Rome.

John the Baptist and Jesus’ ministries begin – Year 3990 from Creation – AD 29 – Luke 3:21-38 – Luke 3:1-6 says that John the Baptist’s ministry began in the 15th year of Tiberius Caesar’s reign, so that would be in the fall of AD 29/30.

Jesus’ death by crucifixion on the day of the Passover Feast, Nisan 14, 33 AD. He was resurrected back to life 3 days later on the Feast of Firstfruits, Nisan 17, 33 AD – Year 3993 from Creation (note: only 7 years shy of 4,000 years of mankind by my reckoning – 4th day of the Lord) – AD 33 – Luke 23:32-49.

Note: Joseph, Jesus’ stepfather, was a descendant of King David and his son Solomon. Mary, Jesus’ mother, was a descendant of King David and his son Nathan.

3,517 years (epochs 1- 9) + 476 years = 3,993 years

Epoch 11: The New Testament era – giving of the Holy Spirit to the apostles during Pentecost to the last books of the Bible written by John: AD 33 to AD 100 = 67 years

The Holy Spirit comes upon the apostles during Pentecost – Year 3993 from creation – AD 33 – Acts 2:1-42.

Here are a few major events of this time of the New Testament era: Stephen, an early church elder (full of faith and power who did great wonders and miracles among the people), was martyred in AD 35. Paul is converted the same year.

Herod martyrs James the apostle, the brother of John the apostle in AD 44. James, Jesus’ stepbrother, writes the first New Testament book in AD 45. Paul and Barnabas (and John Mark initially) embark on the first missionary journey in AD 48. In AD 49, James leads a council of Christians in Jerusalem to discuss the new Gentile converts and the sufficiency of grace for salvation free of the law. Paul writes Galatians the same year.

Herod Agrippa II becomes king of the Jews in AD 50 after his father is struck down by God. He was the last in the line of Roman-appointed Herodian kings. Paul embarks on his 2nd missionary journey. Paul writes 1 Thessalonians and 2 Thessalonians in AD 51 and embarks on his 3rd missionary journey in AD 53. In the same year, the Jews are expelled from Rome until AD 54, when Nero ascended to the Roman throne.

Paul writes 1 and 2 Corinthians and Romans in AD 56. He makes his final visit to Jerusalem in AD 57. Mark writes his Gospel book in AD 58. Matthew and Luke write their Gospels in AD 60. Paul writes Ephesians, Colossians and Philemon from prison in Rome in AD 60. He then writes Philippians and 1 Timothy in AD 62. Luke, the physician, writes Acts in AD 62. James, the Lord’s brother and leader of the church in Jerusalem, is martyred by the high priest of the Jews.

Peter writes his first epistle in AD 63. It is believed that Hebrews was written in the same year; the author is unknown but many believe it was authored by Paul. Peter writes his second epistle in AD 64. The same year, fire ravages Rome for 6 days and destroys half the city. Nero blames the Christians in Rome, and they are persecuted in great numbers. Peter is one of the martyred Christians and is killed in AD 65.

Paul writes Titus in AD 66. A Jewish revolt against the Romans occurs in Jerusalem in AD 66 and lasts for 3 years. In AD 67, the church at Jerusalem adheres to a divine revelation (Luke 21:20-21) that was given to Jesus’ disciples and escapes the city and flees to Pella. Paul is arrested and brought back to Rome, where he writes 2 Timothy. He is martyred in AD 68.

The Roman general Vespasian and his son Titus conquer Galilee in AD 67. Vespasian is proclaimed emperor in AD.69 and turns the war over to his son Titus.

Jerusalem and the Temple are destroyed in AD 70 on the 9th day of Av (Jewish calendar) – Year 4030 from creation – AD 70. The Jewish historian Flavius Josephus was an eyewitness to the tragedy.

The Roman army plowed the Temple Mount and the city of Jerusalem on the 9th Day of Av (on the 1-year anniversary of the destruction of the Temple and the city) – Year 4031 from creation – AD 71.

The remnant Jewish soldiers and some women and children who had fled Jerusalem in AD 70 were “holed up” at the rock fortress at Masada. In AD 73, the Roman army built a ramp and was about to break through, so the Jews committed mass suicide rather than face enslavement under the Romans.

In AD 79, Vespasian dies, and Titus becomes emperor of Rome. His reign was short-lived as he died in AD 81. Titus’ brother, Domitian, then becomes emperor the same year. In AD 87, Domitian issues a decree that he was to be worshiped as lord and god. Of course, the Christians were unwilling to submit to this decree and were subject to great persecution under Domitian’s rule. John was exiled to the island of Patmos during this persecution.

John writes the book of Revelation and the Gospel of John – Year 4055 from creation – AD 95.

Domitian is assassinated in AD 96, and Nerva replaces him as emperor. Nerva issued a recall of all of Domitian’s exiles the same year, and John returned to Ephesus. John writes 1,2,3 John between the years AD 96 and AD 100.

3993 years (Epochs 1-10) + 67 years (Epoch 11) = 4,060 years

Author’s Note: The rest of this chronology is adequately recorded in history; I will just add some of the more important events

Epoch 12: Catholic Christianity Era: AD 100 – AD 312 = 212 years

Ignatius, the bishop of Antioch, is martyredYear 4070 from creation – AD 110 – Persecution of Christians by the Roman government and the emperor Trajan began about this time.

The Jewish revolt against the Roman occupation of Palestine began in AD 132 and ended in AD 135. The entire Jewish population of Judea was deported and replaced with Gentiles. The province’s name was changed from Judea to Syria-Palestine.

Polycarp, bishop of Smyrna and a disciple of the apostle John, is martyred in AD 156. Justin, one of Christianity’s first apologists, is martyred in AD 165.

Septimius Severus, a man of African descent, became emperor of Rome in AD 192. In AD 202, he established a law forbidding new conversions to Christianity. One could worship other gods, but they had to acknowledge that the Roman sun god was supreme. Persecution ensued, and many were martyred during this time.

Origen, a scholar from Alexandria, Egypt, begins his writings in approximately AD 205. Origen wrote extensively on theological matters with more than 2,000 works, including commentaries on nearly every book of the Bible. Origen was one of the first (and greatest) theologians who made allegorical interpretation of the Bible (especially eschatological writings) the standard hermeneutic from his time through the Middle Ages. He included many concepts from Plato into his writings, merging philosophy with spiritual matters.

Trajanus Decius becomes emperor of Rome in AD 249 and begins the persecution of Christians in AD 250. He died in battle the following year.

Emperor Diocletian issues four edits in AD 303, which results in the most vicious and horrific persecutions upon the Christians of the empire. He ordered the destruction of church buildings and the prohibition of Christian worship, as well as the burning of Bibles. Thousands of Christians were tortured and killed. Diocletian abdicated the throne in AD 305.

Diocletian’s son-in-law Galerius assumes the throne in AD 303 and persecutes Christians even more than Diocletian did. On his deathbed in AD 311, Galerius issued the Edict of Toleration, which pardoned Christians and allowed them to resume their faith in Jesus. He died 5 days after issuing his edict. Perhaps he saw “the writing on the wall” before his death.

Constantine was the western co-emperor of the Roman Empire beginning in AD 306. In AD 312, he defeats his rival for the throne, Maxentius, in front of the Tiber River near Rome. Constantine then becomes sole emperor of the Western Roman Empire.

4,060 years (Epochs 1-11) + 212 years (epoch 12) = 4,272 years

In part III, we will review epochs 13-19, which will cover 1,709 years of recorded history.

Randy Nettles