Tag: Revelation, Book Of (home)

"Though St. John the Evangelist saw many strange monsters in his vision, he saw no creature so wild as one of his own commentators."

permalink source: G. K. Chesterton
tags: Hermeneutics, Revelation, Book Of

If Revelation is clear, why do so many people have trouble with it? And why is it so controversial? We have trouble because we approach it from the wrong end. Suppose I start by asking, “what do the bear’s feet in Revelation 13:2 stand for?” If I start with a detail, and ignore the big picture, I am asking for trouble. God is at the center of Revelation (Rev. 4-5). We must start with him and with the contrasts between him and his satanic opponents. If instead we try right away to puzzle out details, it is as if we tried to use a knife by grasping it by the blade instead of the handle. We are starting at the wrong end. Revelation is a picture book, not a puzzle book. Don’t try to puzzle it out. Don’t become preoccupied by isolated details. Rather, become engrossed in the story. Praise the Lord. Cheer for the saints. Detest the Beast. Long for the final victory. The truth is, some teachers of the Book of Revelation have set a bad example. They turn the Book on its head; they turn it into a puzzle book. In their example they preach obscurity instead of clarity, and of course people end up feeling incompetent.

permalink source: The Returning King, Vern Poythress, http://www.frame-poythress.org/Poythress_books/Returning_King/BRvCIntro1a.htm
tags: Hermeneutics, Revelation, Book Of

Some modern people come to Revelation with the recipe, “interpret everything literally if possible.” That recipe mistakes what kind of book Revelation is. Of course, John literally saw what he says he saw. But what he saw was a vision. It was filled with symbols, like the Beast of 13:1-8 and the seven blazing lamps in 4:5. It never intended to be a direct, nonsymbolical report of the future. People living in John’s own time understood this matter instinctively, because they recognized that John was writing in a “apocalyptic” manner, a manner already as familiar to them as a political cartoon is today.

permalink source: The Returning King, Vern Poythress, http://www.frame-poythress.org/Poythress_books/Returning_King/BRvCIntro1b.htm
tags: Hermeneutics, Revelation, Book Of

Satan attacks the saints in two main ways. The Beast attacks with power and persecution, endeavoring to destroy the witness of the saints and force them to worship the Beast. Babylon attacks with seduction, endeavoring to destroy the purity of the saints.

permalink source: Vern Poythress, The Returning King, http://www.frame-poythress.org/Poythress_books/Returning_King/BRvCom17.htm
tags: Temptation, Revelation, Book Of, Persecution