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Author says Revelations and Christian Prophesy is simply wrong.

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posted on Feb, 10 2012 @ 11:14 AM
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reply to post by jmdewey60
 

Thanks for some of the observations and arguments on the book.


I can imagine that the "Jewish" issue in Revelations will cause more concern than the other arguments of Kirsch, especially since the fundamentalist Christians currently most obsessed with Revelations could be considered "Christian Zionists", or in some cases "Messianic Jews".

I've been a bit side-tracked with other reading obligations.

What I can shortly say is that the points raised by Kirsch on p.14 are again mentioned later in the book.
I'm not sure my Bible interpretations speak of "Jews" (but I'll check), and the terms Hebrews, Israelites or Judeans were more common. As you also seem to suggest, terms like "Jew" as apart from "Christian", were still under construction. But that's what Kirsch points out too: differences between Judaic sects, and the author of Revelations condemning the "sell-outs" in a context of Roman colonialism and oppression.

A stunning book that I bought at the flea-market is: After Jesus: The triumph of Christianity (The Reader's Digest Association, Pleasantville: New York).
This has been a very helpful companion on Kirsch, and it can be read from a faithful or simply historical position.
I've just read on the confusions in early Christianity, and what really differentiated groups like the Pharisees, Sudducees, and Essenes.

During the life of St. Paul there were huge debates about the "God fearers" (gentiles who attended synagogues, but were not willing to undergo the painful hazards of adult circumcision, or the dietary laws).
Some Christian churches (which were localized sects) demanded that circumcision came before baptism for gentiles, while St. Paul eventually decided the Mosaic law was not applicable to gentiles who turned to Christ, and suggested that they only help to fund the poor in Jerusalem.
However that was not the final word on the matter for other sects.
Then there was also the unclear status of older sects, like the Samaritans, who formed the only native population of the Judean region that was recruited into the Roman army.

So Revelations was indeed written at a confusing time, but it probably helped to define Christianity as apart from Judaism over the coming centuries.
About three centuries later, the Catholic Church infused Christianity with paganism on the pretext of distancing itself from the Jews.
Luther and the Protestant "reformation" kept a huge dash of antisemitism in his writings.

Kirsch refers again to the paradox of "Christian Zionisms" on pp.194-210.

I think ultimately the author of Revelations (Luther first wanted to leave it out completely) did have a fervor against certain people and groups (Romans and the priestly upper-class; Hellenists and sell-outs), and although Christianity preached peace (or passive resistance), the Judeans did have a major uprising in AD 70, which destroyed the more war-like groups, but not necessarily their anti-authoritarian mind-set.

edit on 10-2-2012 by halfoldman because: (no reason given)




posted on Feb, 10 2012 @ 11:32 AM
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reply to post by halfoldman
 

Probably my main objection I was trying to make is that Kirsch takes positions on what the proper interpretation is of certain passages of Revelation, but not what everyone agrees on it means.

It could be he knows some history where people did believe exactly that way, and I'm sure such an interpretation would have caused lots of problems based on the ignorance of a lot of people and their not having the resources to come to a better interpretation.

edit on 10-2-2012 by jmdewey60 because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 10 2012 @ 03:04 PM
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reply to post by jmdewey60
 

Well, I thought you had a very good point and criticism.

Of course what should be remembered is that Kirsch's context is historical. Although sometimes directly, largely we are to draw certain implied conclusions from past interpretations of Revelations as metaphors of current Millennial interpretations.

He does not offer his own interpretation - he points out what is obtuse (such as the exact identity of the Synagogue of Satan), and how various groups interpreted it, and since we are still here, we can pretty much conclude that they were all wrong.

He's not quite neutral however, I think.



posted on Feb, 10 2012 @ 05:09 PM
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reply to post by halfoldman
 

Right.
When I get further along I would probably see where he is saying this is represented historically as an influential interpretation .
It could be that he wanted to grab the reader's attention at the beginning by making what looks like an outlandish way of reading Revelation.



posted on Feb, 10 2012 @ 05:21 PM
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reply to post by jmdewey60
 

Is there any non-outlandish way to read Revelations, or summing up what it says?



edit on 10-2-2012 by halfoldman because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 10 2012 @ 05:42 PM
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reply to post by halfoldman
 


Well, of course I would be biased towards my own view which is that we don't need to be looking at Old Testament prophecy and wondering if Gog and Magog are going to attack, God took care of them already, in Revelation.
The mistake in my view is saying these are in the future. John starts out, right at the beginning, saying these are things soon to pass, so you look at what happened right after it was written, and there is the fall of Jerusalem and the destruction of the temple at the same time as righteousness is spreading with the Gospel to all the world.
So the reader back in 80 A.D. should not get upset if they are seeing what looks like bad times because it will soon blow over seeing how Jesus has events well in hand. The evil doers got their judgment and those killed in the judgment inadvertently (collateral damage) are justly compensated by special treatment in heaven as the personal entourage of God, or whatever.

edit on 10-2-2012 by jmdewey60 because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 13 2012 @ 10:05 AM
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Another thing I wanted to comment on from what I have read in the beginning part of Kirsch's book is how he comes out proclaiming in an unequivocal manner, the identity of one of the key figures in Revelation, the slaughtered lamb, as being none other than Jesus himself. I know I was led to believe that myself, and recently came to question it on account of the Darbyites on this forum who portrayed the lamb as this horrific murderer.
I came to the tentative conclusion, after looking over Revelation with a particular interest in what this lamb character was doing, that it was not Jesus but those who had believed in Jesus and had received from him, the spirit of Christ.
Since then I have gone through at least twenty different commentaries on Revelation to look for their interpretation of the slaughtered lamb character. A few of the less cautious and the less authoritative and more agenda driven commentaries would do as Kirsch does and just accept Jesus as the intended identification of the slaughterer lamb, while the more scholarly versions would be more circumspect and place that interpretation on their short list of possible solutions. The most authoritative, the Anchor Commentary, and the most conservative, does not ever make the claim that the slaughtered lamb character is in fact Jesus.

edit on 13-2-2012 by jmdewey60 because: (no reason given)



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