The original context is found on page 4 of a discussion forum here: https://www.theworldnewsmedia.org/topic/39516-all-aspects-of-1914-doctrine-are-now-problematic-from-a-scriptural-point-of-view/
[Responses or questions from other forum participants are removed, unless brief]
Could it be said that the last days started in 33 C.E?
Yes. Easily. Note these instances of the expression in the NWT:
- (Acts 2:14-17) 14 But Peter stood up with the Eleven and spoke to them in a loud voice: “Men of Ju·deʹa and all you inhabitants of Jerusalem, let this be known to you and listen carefully to my words. 15 These people are, in fact, not drunk, as you suppose, for it is the third hour of the day. 16 On the contrary, this is what was said through the prophet Joel: 17 ‘“And in the last days,” God says, “I will pour out some of my spirit on every sort of flesh, and your sons and your daughters will prophesy and your young men will see visions and your old men will dream dreams,
Now that 33 had arrived, this expression is first used there in Acts. Then Paul tells Timothy that the reason he is seeing such problems in the congregation is because they are in the “last days.”
- (2 Timothy 3:1-14) . . .But know this, that in the last days critical times hard to deal with will be here. 2 For men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, haughty, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, disloyal, 3 having no natural affection, not open to any agreement, slanderers, without self-control, fierce, without love of goodness, . . . 7 always learning and yet never able to come to an accurate knowledge of truth. 8 Now in the way that Janʹnes and Jamʹbres opposed Moses, so these also go on opposing the truth. Such men are completely corrupted in mind, disapproved as regards the faith. 9 Nevertheless, they will make no further progress, for their folly will be very plain to all, as it was with those two men. 10 But you have closely followed my teaching, my course of life, my purpose, my faith, my patience, my love, my endurance, . . .13 But wicked men and impostors will advance from bad to worse, misleading and being misled. 14 You, however, continue in the things that you learned and were persuaded to believe, . . .
Also, Peter explains why people in that time period are ridiculing the delay of the parousia:
- (2 Peter 3:3-8) 3 First of all know this, that in the last days ridiculers will come with their ridicule, proceeding according to their own desires 4 and saying: “Where is this promised presence of his? Why, from the day our forefathers fell asleep in death, all things are continuing exactly as they were from creation’s beginning.” 5 For they deliberately ignore this fact, that long ago there were heavens and an earth standing firmly out of water and in the midst of water by the word of God; 6 and that by those means the world of that time suffered destruction when it was flooded with water. 7 But by the same word the heavens and the earth that now exist are reserved for fire and are being kept until the day of judgment and of destruction of the ungodly people. 8 However, do not let this escape your notice, beloved ones, that one day is with Jehovah as a thousand years and a thousand years as one day.
Jude says the same thing using the term “last times” to explain why people are ridiculing during the time Jude is writing. The idea, in fact, covers both the points made in 2 Peter and the point of 2 Timothy:
- (Jude 17-21) 17 As for you, beloved ones, call to mind the sayings that have been previously spoken by the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ, 18 how they used to say to you: “In the last time there will be ridiculers, following their own desires for ungodly things.” 19 These are the ones who cause divisions, animalistic men, not having spirituality. 20 But you, beloved ones, build yourselves up on your most holy faith, and pray with holy spirit, 21 in order to keep yourselves in God’s love, while you await the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ with everlasting life in view.
The expression “last days” is also used here, in Hebrews, but the NWT chose in this place not to translate it the same way:
- (Hebrews 1:1, 2) 1 Long ago God spoke to our forefathers by means of the prophets on many occasions and in many ways. 2 Now at the end of these days he has spoken to us by means of a Son, whom he appointed heir of all things, and through whom he made the systems of things.
The NIV is more accurate here:
- In the past God spoke to our ancestors through the prophets at many times and in various ways, 2 but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed heir of all things, and through whom also he made the universe.