What is the Foundation of the Earth?: “Foundation of the Earth” is a Biblical Expression denoting Founding Fathers.
Preterists believe that the old heaven and earth were destroyed at the destruction of the Temple in A.D. 70. See the commentary on 2 Peter 3:5-13. That having been said, what exactly is the foundation of the earth? What does this expression mean? The foundation of the earth is an expression denoting the founding fathers of a city. In the case of Ephesians 1:4-5 the foundation of the earth is Jesus and the twelve disciples. The fact that Jesus and His early followers are the foundation of the world is derived from Isaiah 28:16, Romans 9:33, 1 Corinthians 3:16, 1 Peter 2:4-6 and Revelation 21:14. Isaiah 28:16 reads, “Behold, I am laying in Zion a stone, a tested stone, A costly cornerstone for the foundation, firmly placed. He who believes in it will not be disturbed [emphasis mine].” This verse is quoted in Romans 9:33 and 1 Peter 2:6 where the cornerstone of the foundation is identified as Jesus Christ. The cornerstone is the first stone laid down in a foundation. The cornerstone is often put in place during a ceremony celebrating the construction of an important building. The building that was to be built was the new spiritual Temple of God, the New Jerusalem (Revelation 21:22, 1 Corinthians 3:16, 1 Peter 2:4-6). The New Jerusalem, the Temple of God, is also the new heaven and earth as is indicated in Revelation 21:1-2: “Then I saw ‘a new heaven and a new earth,’ for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea. I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband.” Thus because Jesus is the cornerstone of this spiritual Temple which is the New Jerusalem, the new heaven and earth, Christ is therefore part of the foundation of the world. The foundation of the world mentioned in Ephesians 1:4 might also mentioned in Revelation 21:14: “And the wall of the city [the New Jerusalem] had twelve foundation stones, and on them were the twelve names of the twelve apostles of the Lamb.” Here it is shown that the foundation of the new heaven and earth is also composed of the twelve disciples. Jesus and His first-century disciples are called the foundation of the world because they were the founders of the Christian church, the New Jerusalem of Revelation 21 and 22. For an explanation of how the New Jerusalem is a metaphorical depiction of the Christian church see the commentary on Revelation 21. Thus as stated above, the expression “foundation of the world” denotes the founders of a city or kingdom.
If the expression “foundation of the earth” denotes the founding rulers or sovereigns of a city or kingdom, then this idea implies that the foundation of the earth is not set at the birth of those sovereigns, but rather denotes the time in which they began to reign. As stated above, the New Jerusalem is the Christian church. And the Christian church began to exist during Jesus’ ministry. Thus the new heaven and earth, the New Jerusalem which is the Christian church, began its construction around A.D. 30. The fact that the new spiritual Temple of God which is also the Christian church was in the process of being built in the first half of the first century is implied in 1 Peter 2:4-6 where the first-century saints are said to collectively constitute the Temple of God: “As you come to him, the living Stone—rejected by humans but chosen by God and precious to him—you also, like living stones, are being built into a spiritual house [the Temple of God] to be a holy priesthood, offering spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ [emphasis mine].” Echoing 1 Peter 2:4-6, 1 Corinthians 3:16 reads, “Don’t you know that you yourselves are God’s temple[.]” The fact that the new Temple of God began its construction in the early part of the first century by the formation of the Christian Church is also implied in Matthew 7:24-27 where the house built on the rock (the new spiritual Temple of God, the church which is the new heaven and earth) withstood the storm while the house built on sand representing the old Temple of God which signified the Old Covenant was destroyed in A.D. 70.
Though construction of the new heaven and earth, the Christian church began prior to the destruction of the old heaven and earth which occurred at the destruction of Herod’s Temple in A.D. 70, the new heaven and earth did not replace the old until the destruction of the old heaven and earth in A.D. 70 (2 Peter 3:10-13, Revelation 21:1). As stated above, the expression “foundation of the earth” denotes the founding rulers or sovereigns of a city or kingdom, thus the foundation of the earth is not set at the birth of those sovereigns or even the time in which they began to garner support and divide the loyalty of the kingdom before staging a coup, but rather denotes the time in which they BEGAN TO REIGN.
When did Jesus and the twelve disciples begin to reign? Revelation 12:7-10 explicitly states that the saints began to reign once Satan was cast out of heaven:
Then war broke out in heaven. Michael and his angels fought against the dragon, and the dragon and his angels fought back. But he was not strong enough, and they lost their place in heaven. The great dragon was hurled down—that ancient serpent called the devil, or Satan, who leads the whole world astray. He was hurled to the earth, and his angels with him. Then I heard a loud voice in heaven say: ‘Now have come the salvation and the power and the kingdom of our God, and the authority of his Messiah [emphasis mine].
When was Satan cast out of heaven? Many Christians believe that Satan was cast out of heaven at Jesus’ death and resurrection. However, Satan is still called the god of this world even after Jesus’s death and resurrection. 2 Corinthians 4:4 reads, “[T]he god of this world [Satan] has blinded the minds of the unbelieving so that they might not see the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God.” Also Romans 16:20 reads, “The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet.” In 2 Corinthians 4:4 and Romans 16:20 one can see that Satan was still in heaven after Jesus’ resurrection. Ephesians 6:12 echoes the idea that Satan was not cast out of heaven after Jesus’ resurrection and ascension: “For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.” Because Ephesians was written years after Jesus’ resurrection and ascension, the fact that there were still forces of evil in the heavenly realms implies that Satan had still not yet been cast out of heaven at that time.
Interestingly, a vision of a war in heaven just like that described in Revelation 12 which immediately preceded the Messianic reign was witnessed in Iyyar of A.D. 66, at the very start of the Jewish War. Recording this event Tacitus writes, “In the sky appeared a vision of armies in conflict, of glittering armour” (Tacitus The Histories 5.13). If this vision recorded by Tacitus is to be believed, it appears that the war which resulted in Satan being cast out of heaven mentioned in Revelation 12:7-9 occurred in A.D. 66. Thus it must have been somewhere between A.D. 66 and A.D. 70 that Satan was finally cast out of heaven.
Since the foundation of the earth is the time in which a king begins to reign. And since Revelation 12:7-10 says that Jesus and His people began to reign after Satan was cast out of heaven, this means that the foundation of the new heaven and earth points to A.D. 70. This date is also implied by the fact that the new heaven and earth and its foundation were to replace the old heaven and earth (2 Peter 3:5-13 and Revelation 21:1). Thus the time in which the new heaven and earth replaced the old which was in A.D. 70 may be the point of reference for foundation of the earth mentioned in Ephesians 1:4-5. For more information on the past fulfillment of Biblical end time prophecy see revelationrevolution.org.