Before Antichrist, Elias and Enoch will preach for 1,260 days:

Apoc. 11:3:

And I will give unto my two witnesses [Elias and Enoch], and they shall prophesy a thousand two hundred sixty days, clothed in sackcloth

What exactly will their preaching look like, according to Catholic commentators? Will it involve modern communication technologies like the internet, radio communication, etc.? Or will it be strictly word-of-mouth preaching?

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    Note: As far as I'm aware, the "two witnesses" are not specifically identified in Scripture. That they are Elijah and Enoch is one hypothesis, but is not certain. (However, their identity may be irrelevant to the question.)
    – Matthew
    Commented Jan 29 at 6:27
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    If you had not named the witnesses, I would have suggested that you imagine what the "double witness" of the whole Christian community would look like. Commented Jan 29 at 11:55
  • @Matthew It's fairly certain. Both Enoch (Sir. 44:16, Heb. 11:5) and Elias (2 Kgs. 2:11, Sir. 48:9) are alive (have not yet died), and Malachias 4:5 says God "will send you Elias, the prophet, before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the Lord".
    – Geremia
    Commented Jan 29 at 19:45
  • @Matthew Apoc. 11:7-12 says the Beast (Antichrist) will martyr both witnesses. (Also, Elias will preach to the Jews, and Enoch to the gentiles.)
    – Geremia
    Commented Jan 29 at 19:45
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    Jesus identified the Elias prophesied by Malachi as John the Baptist, "if you will receive it": Matthew 11:14 Commented Feb 1 at 14:06

2 Answers 2


Fr. Charles Arminjon, End of the Present World and the Mysteries of the Future Life, 3rd Conference:

How, within the space of time set for their mission [1,260 days], will they manage to give their testimony in all inhabited places, and cover the whole extent of the earth? We answer that it will not be necessary for them to visit every town; it will be enough for them to appear in the principal ones, and for their preaching to be heard in the capitals and main centers of population where the Antichrist has been present and has exercised his most powerful fascination. Furthermore, it is unlikely that Enoch and Elijah will be constantly together; it is more probable that they will preach separately, until, by a command from God, or following a providential inspiration, they suddenly come together for the supreme battle.


What will Elijah's and Enoch's preaching look like?

Always thought that Enoch would preach to the Pagans and Elijah would preach to the Jewish people. However Dr. Taylor Marshall thinks otherwise.

I have a fascination with Enoch and Elias. Enoch (or Henoch) is the inspiration for the apocalyptic work called “1 Enoch” cited by Saint Jude in his epistle. Elias (or Elijah) is considered to be the Old Testament founder of the Carmelites and the greatest of the Old Testament prophets before Saint John the Baptist. Best of all, neither of these prophets ever died!

Scripture only knows two men who never experienced natural death. (The Blessed Virgin Mary did experience death before her glorious Assumption, as explained in this post.)

Enoch lived before the great Flood. We read the following about him:

“And all the days of Henoch were three hundred and sixty-five years. And he walked with God, and was seen no more: because God took him.” - (Genesis 5:23–24, D-R)

Concerning Elias we read that he was taken up in a Chariot of Fire:

“And as they went on, walking and talking together, behold, a fiery chariot and fiery horses parted them both asunder: and Elias went up by a whirlwind into heaven.” - (2 Kings 2:11, D-R)

As you can see, these two men did not die. According to St Thomas Aquinas, they are preserved in the atmospheric heaven (which is identified with earthly paradise), but not in the empyrean heaven (Heaven proper). See Summa theologiae III, q. 49, a. 5.

Saint Thomas, in agreement with the Church Fathers explains why Enoch and Elias are waiting out there in outer space. Saint Thomas writes these two men will return at the end of time to do battle with the Antichrist. It is unthinkable that these two men would never die since this is contrary to the Apostolic teaching:

“And as it is appointed unto men once to die, and after this the judgment:” (Hebrews 9:27, D-R)

Enoch will evangelize and organize the Jews who will seek baptism and convert to the Catholic Faith during the reign of the Antichrist. Elijah will evangelize and organize the last wave of Gentiles that will convert to Christ during the Antichrist’s reign of terror. Both prophets will be slain, rise again, and ascend to Heaven as explained in Apocalypse chapter 11.

I cannot help but wonder about the identity of “atmospheric heaven.” Saint Thomas Aquinas sees it as synonymous with “earthly paradise.” This could be a location in “outer space.” It could be a place hidden on earth. Or perhaps it is the Garden of Eden transferred to another place. There state, I imagine, would be one of natural paradise without the beatific vision. - Enoch and Elias are in the Atmosphere…They will return to battle the Antichrist

Elijah will most certainly preach to the Jews. This makes more sense than Marshall’s interpretation.

The memory of Elias has ever remained living in the minds both of Jews and Christians. According to Malachias, God preserved the prophet alive to entrust him, at the end of time, with a glorious mission (iv, 5-6): at the New Testament period, this mission was believed to precede immediately the Messianic Advent (Matthew 17:10, 12; Mark 9:11); according to some Christian commentators, it would consist in converting the Jews (St. Jer., in Mal., iv, 5-6); the rabbis, finally, affirm that its object will be to give the explanations and answers hitherto kept back by them. I Mach., ii, 58, extols Elias's zeal for the Law, and Ben Sira entwines in a beautiful page the narration of his actions and the description of his future mission (Sirach 48:1-12). Elias is still in the N.T. the personification of the servant of God (Matthew 16:14; Luke 1:17; 9:8; John 1:21). No wonder, therefore, that with Moses he appeared at Jesus' side on the day of the Transfiguration. - Elias (Catholic Encyclopaedia)


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