Revelation by maclaren1

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									     Revelation




Coastland University
Pastor Brett Peterson
HISTORICAL BACKGROUND TO
       REVELATION


                      THE AUTHOR
• Four times in Revelation the writer calls himself
  John (1:1, 4, 9; 22:8)
• Ways John refers to himself
   – Servant of Jesus Christ (1:1)
   – Brother of the Christians in Asia Minor and a
     fellow sufferer in the tribulation (1:9)
   – Exiled to the isle of Patmos (1:9)
   – Saw and heard the things record in this book
     (22:8)
    Uniqueness of Revelation

• ―The canonical Revelation is unique in
  being ascribed not to a figure of the
  distant past, but to a contemporary
  member of the first-century church
  named John. The work is also unique
  in being the only surviving document
  by a Christian prophet, which was a
  common function or office in the early
  church.‖ (340)
        Introduction to the
        Book of Revelation
• Date of Writing
  – Between 95-100 AD
  – During the persecution of Domitian
• Author
  – John, ―a prophet and servant of Jesus
    Christ‖
  – Most agree this is the Apostle John.
    Evidence:
    • Writer assumes audience will know he is an
      Apostle
    • Identification of Jesus as ―the word‖
     Introduction to Revelation
            (continued)
• Place of Writing
  – From the Island of Patmos
    • Rugged island in the Aegean Sea 20 miles
      from Ephesus
    • Rome use it as a place of exile for
      offenders/criminals
• Destination of the Letter
  – Written to the seven churches in Asian
    Province
    • Each city mentioned a center of
      communication
    • Ephesus, Smyrna, Pergamum, Thyatira,
      Sardis, Philadelphia, Laodicea
      Purpose of Revelation
• Present Broad/Sweeping Portrait of
  Future Events
• Goal is to:
  – Strengthen the church
  – Promote endurance in the face of trials
  – Encourage suffering believers
• It is a clarification of all end time
  prophecy
• Desires to Instill Moral Earnestness
• Urges Readers to Obey the Words of
  the Prophecy
           Genre of Revelation
• 3 Different Types of Literature
  – Apocalyptic
     •   Usually appeared in times of crisis
     •   Claim by the author to be passing on mysteries
     •   Mysterious, rapturous visions
     •   Use of symbols, parables, and allegories
     •   Concludes with the entrance of God‘s kingdom
  – Prophecy—written to change moral actions and
    here to reveal Christ as King
  – Epistle/Letter
     • Circulated to 7 churches in Asia Minor
     • Opening address and closing salutation
     • This book is written for the Church
     4 Schools of Interpretation
• Preterist
   – Revelation relates to the time it was written
   – Describes struggle between Church and Rome
   – Strength=Revelation relevant to the early
     church
   – Limitation=no significant message beyond 1st
     century
• Historicist
   – A continuous chronicle of church history
   – Symbols represent different events in history
   – Strength=strong emphasis on sovereignty of
     God
   – Limitation=leaves room for multiple
     interpretations
      4 Schools of Interpretation
            (continued)
• Futurist
   – Bulk of Revelation deals with the future action of God in
     history
   – It‘s focus is on events leading to Christ‘s return, kingdom,
     final judgment, eternal state
   – Strength=emphasis on God‘s progressive activity
   – Limitation=None
• Idealist/Spiritual
   – Revelation paints picture of struggle between good/evil
   – God is strengthening the church with hope of victory
   – Strength=some appropriate uses of symbols in
     Revelation
   – Limitation=skeptical attitude toward predictive prophecy
       Millennial Perspectives
            on Revelation
• Premillenial
  – Christ will return before the millennium
     • Pre-tribulation/Pre-millennial
        – Christ will rapture the church before 7 year tribulation
        – After the tribulation, Christ begins 1,000 year reign
           » Before reign begins, Satan is defeated at
             Armageddon
           » Christ established his earthly kingdom/rules for 1,000
             years
           » Christ and His people then enter eternity
        – Mid-Tribulation/Pre-millennial
           » Christ raptures the church at mid-point of tribulation
           -Pre-Wrath
           Church ruptured prior to the wrath
        – Post-Tribulation/Pre-millennial
           » Christ will meet the church in the air after the
             tribulation
           » Millennium begins with Christ‘s & church‘s descent
Millennial Perspectives on Revelation
             (continued)
 • Post-Millennial
   – The return of Christ will occur at the
     conclusion of the millennium
   – Return occurs at the close of a lengthy
     period of human progress
• Amillennial
   – 1,000 year is a symbol of Christ‘s
     present spiritual kingship at the right
     hand of God
   – Millennium is this present period
     • Gospel can spread freely
     • Church can influence history by bringing
       people to faith
1. Preterist - limit the historical
  references to the 1st century & the
  struggle b/t the church and the Roman
  gov‘t.
  A. Strength: Rev. is relevant to life of
  early church.
  B. Weakness: Unable to find significant
  message beyond 1st century. Not
  substantiated with scripture.
2. Historicist - a continuous chronicle of
  church history from apostolic times until
  Christ‘s return. Seals, trumpets and
  bowls are different events in history.
  A. Strength: Sovereignty of God.
  B. Weakness: Widespread interpretations
  linking Rev. to world events.

 All of these views leaves Revelation up to
 man‘s own interpretation.
                   2Pe 1:20 But know this first of all, that
                   no prophecy of Scripture is a matter of
                   one's own interpretation,
3. Futurist - bulk of Rev. (4-22) content
  refers to the future action of God in
  history: Christ‘s return, establishment of
  kingdom, final judgment & eternal state.
  A. Strength: progressive activity of God
  in world history.
  B. Weakness: None
4. Idealist - (spiritual) omits reference to
 time since the reference is to a
 continuous struggle b/t good and evil in
 the church and the history of the world.
 God is strengthening the church with a
 promise of ultimate victory.
 A. Strength: recognizes symbols.
 B. Weakness: skepticism toward
 predictive prophecy, failed perspective of
 the actions of God in history.
  Revelation – An Introduction

• Interpretation: the four views
                 Review

• Interpretation: the four views
  – Idealism     – no historical or predictive value;
    symbolic struggle between good and evil
  Revelation – An Introduction

• Interpretation: the four views
  – Idealism     – no historical or predictive value; symbolic
    struggle between good and evil

  – Preterism – No predictive value.        Depiction
    of the struggle of Christianity against Roman
    persecution
  Revelation – An Introduction

• Interpretation: the four views
  – Idealism     – no historical or predictive value; symbolic
    struggle between good and evil
  – Preterism – No predictive value.     Depiction of the struggle
    of Christianity against Roman persecution

  – Historicism – symbolic pre-narration of
    church history. Antichrist = Pope; ―locusts‖ =
    Islamic invaders, etc. No value now
  Revelation – An Introduction

• Interpretation: the four views
  – Idealism     – no historical or predictive value; symbolic
    struggle between good and evil
  – Preterism – No predictive value.     Depiction of the struggle
    of Christianity against Roman persecution
  – Historicism – symbolic pre-narration of church history.
    Antichrist = Pope; ―locusts‖ = Islamic invaders, etc.

  – Futurism – describes a future and chaotic
    time called the ―Tribulation‖ - in scripture it is
    only referred to as the 70th week of Daniel
  Revelation – An Introduction

• Interpretation: the four views
  – Idealism     – no historical or predictive value; symbolic
    struggle between good and evil
  – Preterism – No predictive value.      Depiction of the
    struggle of Christianity against Roman persecution
  – Historicism – symbolic pre-narration of church
    history. Antichrist = Pope; ―locusts‖ = Islamic invaders,
    etc.
  – Futurism – describes a future and chaotic time
    called the ―Tribulation‖

• And a fifth – Historical
  Revelation – An Introduction
• And a fifth – Historical
• Combines preterist and futurist
  – Like much of Old Testament prophecy,
    Revelation then has a dual meaning
  – This is known as ‗double fulfillment‘
  Revelation – An Introduction
• The Millennial Question
     Revelation – An Introduction
  • The Millennial Question




Millennium = 1000 years. Reference in
Revelation 20 to the future time when Christ
will rule on earth.
     Revelation – An Introduction
  • The Millennial Question




Millennium = 1000 years. Reference in
Revelation 20 to the future time when Christ
will rule on earth.
The various views deal with the interpretation
of the term “millennium”
  Revelation – An Introduction
• The Millennial Question
   – Pre-Millennial View: Christ will return
     before the millennium and will reign 1,000
     years. A literal interpretation of the term.

   This includes all Bible based Eschatologies,
     including pre-trib, mid-trib, pre-wrath, and post-
     trib.
        Revelation – An Introduction


• Pre-millennial Events include:
  – Rapture of the church
  – Judgment seat for believers
  – Israel rebuilding their temple under the antichrist‘s
    rule
          Revelation – An Introduction


• Pre-millennial Events include:
  –   Rapture of the church
  –   Judgment seat for believers
  –   Israel rebuilds the temple under antichrist‘s rule
  –   The 70th week of Daniel
  –   Open return of Christ
  –   Battle of Armageddon
  –   1000 year reign of Christ
  –   Final judgment
  –   New Jerusalem
  Revelation – An Introduction
• The Millennial Question
  – Pre-Millennial View: Christ will return before the millennium
    and will reign 1,000 years. A literal interpretation of the term.

  – The Dispensational Pre-Millennial
    View (started ‘pre-trib’)
      • More rigid view originated by J.N. Darby
        around 1860. Divides history into seven
        dispensations.
  Revelation – An Introduction

• The Dispensations
  [1] Age of innocence – Garden of Eden
  Revelation – An Introduction

• The Dispensations
  [1] Age of innocence – Garden of Eden
  [2] Age of conscience – after expulsion
  Revelation – An Introduction

• The Dispensations
  [1] Age of innocence – Garden of Eden
  [2] Age of conscience – after expulsion
  [3] Age of human government – covenant
    with Noah
  Revelation – An Introduction

• The Dispensations
  [1] Age of innocence – Garden of Eden
  [2] Age of conscience – after expulsion
  [3] Age of human government – covenant with
    Noah
  [4] Age of promise – covenant with
    Abraham
  Revelation – An Introduction

• The Dispensations
  [1] Age of innocence – Garden of Eden
  [2] Age of conscience – after expulsion
  [3] Age of human government – covenant with
    Noah
  [4] Age of promise – covenant with Abraham
  [5] Age of law – covenant with Moses
  Revelation – An Introduction

• The Dispensations
  [1] Age of innocence – Garden of Eden
  [2] Age of conscience – after expulsion
  [3] Age of human government – covenant with
    Noah
  [4] Age of promise – covenant with Abraham
  [5] Age of law – covenant with Moses
  [6] Age of grace – the church age
  Revelation – An Introduction

• The Dispensations
  [1] Age of innocence – Garden of Eden
  [2] Age of conscience – after expulsion
  [3] Age of human government – covenant with
    Noah
  [4] Age of promise – covenant with Abraham
  [5] Age of law – covenant with Moses
  [6] Age of grace – the church age
  [7] Millennial reign of Christ
 Revelation – An Introduction

• The Dispensations
  [1] Age of innocence – Garden of Eden
  [2] Age of conscience – after expulsion
  [3] Age of human government – covenant
    with Noah
  [4] Age of promise – covenant with
    Abraham
  [5] Age of law – covenant with Moses
  [6] Age of grace – the church age
  [7] Millennial reign of Christ
 Revelation – An Introduction

• The Dispensations
  [1] Age of innocence – Garden of Eden
  [2] Age of conscience – after expulsion
  [3] Age of human government – covenant
    with Noah
  [4] Age of promise – covenant with
    Abraham
  [5] Age of law – covenant with Moses
  [6] Age of grace – the church age
  [7] Millennial reign of Christ
  Revelation – An Introduction
• The Millennial Question
  – Pre-Millennial View
     • Christ will return before the millennium and will reign 1,000
       years. A literal interpretation of the term.
  – The Dispensational Pre-Millennial View
     • More rigid view originated by J.N. Darby around 1860.
       Divides history into seven dispensations.

  – The Amillennial View
     • There is no literal or figurative millennium. A
       more accurate concept would be that we are
       experiencing the ―millennium‖ now – the
       period between the 1st and 2nd advents of
       Christ. Things would get better and better,
       much like the next view…
  Revelation – An Introduction
• The Millennial Question
  – Pre-Millennial View
  – The Dispensational Pre-Millennial View
  – The Amillennial View
  – The Post-Millennial View
     • The now obsolete view that the world is
       getting better and better – the ―figurative‖
       millennium we‘re presently living in. When it
       reaches a certain point, Christ will return.
     • A view popular from the industrial revolution
       to the world wars of the 20th century
• Preterist View
• The preterist view regards Revelation
  as a symbolic picture of early church
  conflicts which have already been
  fulfilled. This view denies the future
  predictive quality of most of the Book
  of Revelation.
            Our Stance

• We will let the text speak for itself.
• This is an interactive class – I
  encourage questions, comments, and
  interaction.

								
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