Revelation is not Christian

Discussion in 'Christianity' started by sonoman, Sep 16, 2008.

  1. sonoman

    sonoman Interfaith Forums

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    I am a Christian who believes the book of Revelation is not Christian because it contradicts the teachings of Jesus about forgiveness of sins and about the destruction of the world.

    Jesus told us God did not send him to destroy the world but to save it yet in Revelation the world is subject to horrendous calamities and humanity is all but destroyed save the tiny percentage that believe in Jesus Christ, the Avenger of God. No forgiveness of sins, humanity toasted. That is not what Jesus teaches.
     
  2. Eclectic Mystic

    Eclectic Mystic Well-Known Member

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    Jesus's Gospel message was for the first time around.
     
  3. ChristineES

    ChristineES Follower of Yeshua

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    Interesting. My mother told me about a year ago that she doesn't believe that Revelation was inspired because of the same reasons you mentioned. She says she also doesn't believe in Jude, either.
    You do raise some valid points, but I am not sure I want to completely dismiss Revelation yet.
     
  4. Thomas

    Thomas Administrator Admin

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    Within Catholic circles, the common view is that Revelations was addressed to a community suffering, or about to suffer, persecution.

    The symbolism draws from Hebrew scriptural imagery, and is heavily influenced by the idea of apocalypse, which was prevalent at the time. Although many today emphasise its prophetic content, and read all manner of things into its imagery, there is strong evidence to suggest that the audience of its day would understand the symbolism as referring to their own situation; they had a pretty good idea of who 'Babylon' was, for example, and not assume this was a text written which meant nothing to them, but would become clear in the next few millenia...

    Certainly not all the Fathers were sure of it, but eventually it was included in the Biblical canon. I don't know much about the discussions surrounding the decision to include it.

    Thomas
     
  5. sonoman

    sonoman Interfaith Forums

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    I have to wonder about that, if the early Christians had a good idea about the meaning of "Babylon" in Revelation. When one realizes that Paul's theology attempts to link Christianity back to Judaism as a "branch" off the vine, there arises a conflict with the Gospel's theology of Jesus which, especially in John, is very hostile to Pharaisic Judaism. Understanding Jesus' message forces a Jew to renounce Judaism as a barrier between humanity and God. With this understanding one can, and many have, myself included, read into Revelation's symbolism a continuation of the Gospel Jesus' and John's attack on Judaism, e.g. the beasts symbolizing Yahweh (as Yamm-which Yahweh originally was complete with Tiamat, Lotan, Leviathan, type-seven-headed sea-monster icon) and Moses, and the attack on the Shema, Judaism's most holy prayer with the Name of God worn in "frontlets" on the forehead.

    To purists like John and the author of Revelation, Jews went wrong during their captivity in Babylon where they learned Iranian theology concepts and the Jewish priesthood started "interpreting" the Torah, the arise of the Talmud and rabbinical Judaism. If Revelation continues John's attack on Judaism then "Babylon" may not refer to Rome and Roman persecution but to Judaism gone bad because of Iranian theological pollution. Somewhere along the line Jews learned that making money was OK with Yahweh, it's in the Talmud, and that right there becomes reason for spiritual purists to look upon the Jewish religious authority as corrupt. Early Christians, following Jesus' teachings, were seriously anti-wealth.
     
  6. 17th Angel

    17th Angel לבעוט את התחת ולקחת שמות

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    Babylon isn't to just symbolise as you say Judaism.. It's -all- religions which are not of christ.
     
  7. Dor

    Dor Bible Thumper

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    That is one of the main problems with "Christianity" now is the whole picking and choosing what we like.
     
  8. Dream

    Dream Well-Known Member

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    Hi Sonoman, interesting posts.

    I think Revelation is already not about Rome. Modern disputes about Revelation started when some Protestants used a 'Continuous Historic' interpretation of Revelation to accuse the RC of being the 'Great Harlot', and someone since that time has devised the Futurist and Preterit points of view to take some of the heat off the RC. These three views have accomplished nothing except to distract us from the text, so when you ask most people about Revelation all they have ever heard of are one of the three time-line prediction interpretations.

    Revelation is about the spiritual war we wage, Christ versus antichrist, and it does not represent an event-per-event time line in the physical world. I partly see your point of view of John the Baptist, Jesus, and John the Rev.'s 'attack' on Judaism, but its less of an attack than a return to basics. I think you lost me by saying Yahweh is 'complete with Tiamet, Lotan, Leviathan, ...seven headed', etc. I had heard the monster picture of the 'Demiurge' was part of a lost Gnostic sect, but nothing else. I also object that in Scripture Leviathan usually represents Assyria or Ninevah -- not Yahweh. (Isaiah, Job) I do not see how John the Rev. would have associated Yahweh with the Beast, and I don't think John is opposing the Shema. (I'm interested if you have more info, of course.) John's attack is against antichrist whereas Christ is present in the Shema, and this is recognized many ways. Additionally, Paul identifies the Rock in the wilderness as Christ.
     
  9. Quahom1

    Quahom1 What was the question?

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    One of the points of revelation that is not being addressed is the attrocities man inflicts upon humanity and the world, before the intervention of God. Indeed the warning is that if not for direct intervention from God, the total destruction of mankind is imminent and short coming.

    Forgiveness is one thing. Allowing the total destruction of all of mankind is another.

    Revelation is not about forgiveness, but about a battle between those for God and those opposed to God (it is a mirror of the first battle that occured between the Creator and some of the created, as noted in Genesis).

    The "prize" is human kind's existence, and the souls/spirits of those caught in the middle.

    When Christ was crucified, man didn't know any better. Now we do...

    v/r

    Q
     
  10. Quahom1

    Quahom1 What was the question?

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    Actually it refers to the seat of power of the anti Christ, and the location is real. It is called Babylon (the only place that modern man still knows the location of, as being the same). The beginning of civil law as we know it, for society at large, the cradle of human civilization is 60 clicks S/SW of Bagdad.
     
  11. sonoman

    sonoman Interfaith Forums

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    Ba'al's chief rival for kingship among the gods was Yamm, meaning "Sea", who also sometimes took the guise of a storm-god. His personal name was Yaw or, in some texts, Yawu. For instance, in the Epic of Ba'al, El, speaking to Athirat (Asherah) about their son Yamm says, "The name of my son is Yaw, Oh Goddess. . ."

    "Yamm was the Canaanite god of the sea who also represented Chaos in the yearly nature saga that the Canaanite religion was based on, i.e., the death of crops at winter and their rebirth at spring represented by God or God's lieutenant being taken down into the Abyss or hell there to be rescued (Spring resurrection)by a Savior god or goddess, Baal and Anath for Canaanites, Marduk and Ishtar for Babylonians. This pagan mythology became incorporated in the Easter resurrection tradition of Jesus Christ. According to the Canaanite myths, Baal seized the throne of El with a surprise attack in the palace of El on Mount Sapan. Baal then claimed Asherah and Anath as his wives. Yamm formed an alliance with his father, El, and attempted to drive Baal from the throne. However, Baal defeated Yamm, who had taken the form of a sea dwelling dragon.

    This archetypal myth finds what is believed to be its earliest fully intact version in Canaanite mythology. In the beginning, the people of Canaan taught, there was a rivalry between two great primordial deities, `Yamm' and `Baal'. Yamm, known also as `Prince Sea', was "identified with or accompanied by two fearsome sea monsters, Litan (the Biblical Leviathan) and Tunnan (the Biblical Tannin)". This sea-god Yamm was itself thought to be a sea-monster, being variously referred to as `the dragon', `the twisting serpent', and `the seven-headed monster'. Since this Canaanite sea-god may be an ancient symbol for the Primordial Soul, which would have functioned as a controlling `judge' over its partner the Spirit, it is worth noting that the other name commonly used for Yamm was `Judge River'.

    And Baal, in the role of the young storm-god, was variously called `Lord of the Storm', `Rider of the Clouds', and `Conqueror'. Again, at first this sea-god Yamm was master over Baal, holding power and control over him. But Baal ultimately overthrew Yamm."

    I have this reference note and no source for it. But here's another indication of Yamm as the pre-Yahweh, the name of the tribe of Benjamin which is not the given Hebrew meaning, "Son of my right hand' but means "Sons of Yamm".

    Is Judaism about Yamm's revenge on Baal as Yahweh? :confused:

    Btw, the seven-headed beast from the sea with the wound that did not heal? The seven heads symbolize the seven planetary rulers with the moon being the one with a mortal wound that healed, i.e., the phases of the moon where it disappears and reappears again.
     
  12. Quahom1

    Quahom1 What was the question?

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    The irony about revelation (and other 'prophetic scripture') is the dual nature of the message. It was appropriate for the times then, and is apparently appropriate for the times now...or do you disagree?
     
  13. iBrian

    iBrian Peace, Love and Unity Admin

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    I thought that was supposed to be one of the strengths, hence why not every Christian on this thread is a Catholic? :)
     
  14. sonoman

    sonoman Interfaith Forums

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    I do agree. I believe God has embedded spiritual truth within scriptures even though I also believe the parties to this embedding often had no idea what they were doing for God and future readers. I do believe we are in the End Times but for me, the "End Times" denote the end of spiritual authority arising from traditional religions losing their spiritual credibility for people of intelligence. That is not to say I disbelieve in the ancient texts but to say they must be taken in historical context as the products of their times, i.e. leaving room for improvement even though each set of Abrahamics tried to lock their particular gospel in with threats of damnation for those who dared change them--each failing to do so because why?

    God is God of the living, not the dead.
     
  15. Quahom1

    Quahom1 What was the question?

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    Ok, but then that puts us in a slew of conundrums, considering the fact that Jesus made the law's simple and to the point (the living God right?). Love God, Love neighbor...there is no "out" from these simple laws.

    Can't do even that, and he said He is coming back, and he is not going to be happy in the way he has to come back...
     
  16. sonoman

    sonoman Interfaith Forums

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    "His disciples said to Him, 'Twenty-four prophets spoke in Israel, and all them spoke in You.' He said to them, 'You have omitted the one living in your presence and have spoken only of the dead."

    Gospel of Thomas
    52
     
  17. Dream

    Dream Well-Known Member

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    Sonoman, that is a first class effort you're making; and I see the similarities in the names, and you may be on to something. My only comment, very respectfully, is a warning not to fall into the error of Jacob Bryant.

    Jacob Bryant's A New System; or, an Analysis of Antient Mythology discussed etymological clues in the names of mythological gods; and the book is a wonder and really fantastic. Unfortunately, Mr. Bryant, while extremely intelligent and well meaning overestimated the value of etymological evidence. After developing a really good system for etymological study, Bryant put too much faith into his system. That does not necessarily mean you are on the wrong track, Sonoman, but you need to answer the questions that Jacob Bryant did not. You must explain why your etymological evidence trumps the Traditions, or you haven't proven your theory. How are you better than Jacob Bryant?
     
  18. Quahom1

    Quahom1 What was the question?

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    What does that have to do with revelation?
     
  19. sonoman

    sonoman Interfaith Forums

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    For me it means nearly 2000 years have passed since the Gospels were written by men who at first clearly expected to see the return of the Messiah or Son of Man within their lifetime and this includes Jesus himself according to his writers. John's Gospel ends with that return ambiguous. Clearly Jesus did not come as expected.

    The Jewish Christian writers of the Gospels researched the Jewish epic, Isaiah and Psalms, in order to make it conform to prophesies of a Suffering Servant, not Israel, but Jesus and Jesus as suffering servant Messiah. Less than probably 400 years divided writers of the Old Testament from the New Testament. Perhaps things have changed in the intervening years as much as they changed before. Muhammad thought so. So did the Bab, Joseph Smith, Mary Baker Eddy, etc, etc, not an unreasonable assumption given the prophetic track record despite attempts to thwart new revelation. But not to worry! We've got posting rules now!;)
     
  20. Quahom1

    Quahom1 What was the question?

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    Yes, I suppose we do.
     

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