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Re: [revelation-list] Re: Babylon: Rome or Jerusalem

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  • Ian Paul
    ... Yes, but using one part of the NT for the exegesis of the other has to overcome one important problem: suppose John disagreed with Paul and Matthew? Or
    Message 1 of 27 , Sep 3, 2001
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      Don wrote:

      >>>> I do not feel that the pattern found in Matthew and Thessalonians
      >has been addressed. Jesus blamed Israel for killing the prophets,
      >him, and his apostles. Paul blamed Israel for killing the prophets,
      >Jesus and the apostles. The Apocalypse blames Babylon for killing the
      >prophets, Jesus, and the apostles. I find this quite compelling, and
      >see no reason to discount it. >>>

      Yes, but using one part of the NT for the exegesis of the other has to
      overcome one important problem: suppose 'John' disagreed with Paul and
      Matthew? Or at least, suppose he is writing in a different situation and is
      concerned with a different audience?

      Ian Paul
      .......................
      Revd Dr Ian Paul 32 Penn Hill Avenue, Poole, Dorset BH14 9LZ
      01202 745963 fax 01202 385539
    • John M. Sweigart
      Dear Ian: Yes and amen. Or to put it another way, before we start comparing texts between books, is it not necessary to establish the literary structure of
      Message 2 of 27 , Sep 3, 2001
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        Dear Ian:

        Yes and amen. Or to put it another way, before we start comparing texts
        between books, is it not necessary to establish the literary structure of
        the two passages under consideration? I have always been concerned when
        discussions in academic dialogue disregard that question. For example, in
        Matthew 24, I have seldom seen anyone discuss the topic "in what order did
        Jesus answer the three questions?" Or two questions with one question having
        two parts (reflecting the original) It seems apparent after some study that
        He answered the questions in reverse order. Thus his discussion of "the
        end" first; secondly "the sign of his coming" next the answer to the vital
        question "when will these things be?" His answer to this question begins
        "Now concerning (peri de in the Greek, the famous Pauline marker for a
        change of subject) the day and the hour..." It seems apparent to me that
        this discourse cannot be used to prove some sort of order in the Revelation
        which shows marks of chronological advance by its use of the series of
        sevens.

        John M. Sweigart


        -----Original Message-----
        From: Ian Paul [mailto:ian.b.paul@...]
        Sent: Monday, September 03, 2001 5:57 AM
        To: revelation-list@yahoogroups.com
        Subject: Re: [revelation-list] Re: Babylon: Rome or Jerusalem


        Don wrote:

        >>>> I do not feel that the pattern found in Matthew and Thessalonians
        >has been addressed. Jesus blamed Israel for killing the prophets,
        >him, and his apostles. Paul blamed Israel for killing the prophets,
        >Jesus and the apostles. The Apocalypse blames Babylon for killing the
        >prophets, Jesus, and the apostles. I find this quite compelling, and
        >see no reason to discount it. >>>

        Yes, but using one part of the NT for the exegesis of the other has to
        overcome one important problem: suppose 'John' disagreed with Paul and
        Matthew? Or at least, suppose he is writing in a different situation and is
        concerned with a different audience?

        Ian Paul
        .......................
        Revd Dr Ian Paul 32 Penn Hill Avenue, Poole, Dorset BH14 9LZ
        01202 745963 fax 01202 385539


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      • Don K. Preston
        Ian, has raised good questions of course, but not, in my view, questions that are unanswered. First, we have Paul s statement that he and John, who I would
        Message 3 of 27 , Sep 5, 2001
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          Ian, has raised good questions of course, but not, in my view, questions
          that are unanswered.
          First, we have Paul's statement that he and John, who I would accept as the
          author of the Apocalypse, were not in disagreement in their gospel.
          Second, Paul preached the hope of Israel in his eschatology, and John was
          also anticipating the fulfillment of the promises made to Israel.
          Third, Paul and John both write about a common theme, the New Jerusalem (not
          to mention martyr vindication). In Galatians 4, Philippians 3, and
          (depending on the Pauline authorship), Hebrews 12, Paul sets forth his idea
          of the New City in a context of contrast between Old Jerusalem and the New.
          It would seem to me that one would have to reject either Paul's statement of
          gospel accord between he and John, disprove Johannine authorship of
          Revelation (which of course, in itself would not prove disjunction between
          "John" and the Pauline corpus, and prove a different situation between Paul
          and the Apocalypse.
          So far, I have not been persuaded that any of this can be proven.
          The accord and agreement between the Pauline epistles and Revelation is
          consistent thematically and doctrinally so far as I can see. I find no
          reason to posit a conflict either in doctrine, or circumstances between the
          two authors.
          Thus, I don't have a problem with intertextuality.

          Don K.

          ----- Original Message -----
          From: "Ian Paul" <ian.b.paul@...>
          To: <revelation-list@yahoogroups.com>
          Sent: Monday, September 03, 2001 3:57 AM
          Subject: Re: [revelation-list] Re: Babylon: Rome or Jerusalem


          >
          > Don wrote:
          >
          > >>>> I do not feel that the pattern found in Matthew and Thessalonians
          > >has been addressed. Jesus blamed Israel for killing the prophets,
          > >him, and his apostles. Paul blamed Israel for killing the prophets,
          > >Jesus and the apostles. The Apocalypse blames Babylon for killing the
          > >prophets, Jesus, and the apostles. I find this quite compelling, and
          > >see no reason to discount it. >>>
          >
          > Yes, but using one part of the NT for the exegesis of the other has to
          > overcome one important problem: suppose 'John' disagreed with Paul and
          > Matthew? Or at least, suppose he is writing in a different situation and
          is
          > concerned with a different audience?
          >
          > Ian Paul
          > .......................
          > Revd Dr Ian Paul 32 Penn Hill Avenue, Poole, Dorset BH14 9LZ
          > 01202 745963 fax 01202 385539
          >
          >
          > To unsubscribe from this group, send an email to:
          > revelation-list-unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com
          >
          >
          >
          > Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/
          >
          >
          >
        • Ian Paul
          Don There is an interesting question here on where the burden of proof lies. If I understand correctly, then for your argument to be valid you need a number of
          Message 4 of 27 , Sep 5, 2001
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            Don

            There is an interesting question here on where the burden of proof lies. If
            I
            understand correctly, then for your argument to be valid you need a number
            of things all to be true:

            -Paul's statement of agreement with John has particular implications in
            terms of what they both write
            -this John is the author of Revelation
            -they are writing with similar concerns and into similar situations.

            For my question to raise problems, only one of these be weak.

            I think it would be very hard to argue that 'the New Jerusalem' expressed in
            this way is a major theme of Paul. Justification by faith, the new
            eschatological era of the Spirit, the expectation of the redemption of all
            creation, yes, but 'New Jerusalem'? Hmmm. And how clear is substitutionary
            atonement in Revelation?

            For myself, I think the question of authorship is difficult to prove. And if
            Revelation
            is even a few years later than Paul, then the Christian community is in a
            very different relationship with Judaism (and therefore the Empire vis-a-vis
            the fiscus judaicus), and the whole dynamic has changed.

            And given the diversity of situations and concerns we already have in the NT
            (cf Romans v Cor v Heb v James v John) we surely need to start with the
            assumption that John has his own agenda, rather than that we can use other
            parts of the NT for exegesis of Revelation. There is a question here of the
            extent to which, even in principle, we can read one text through another
            without doing violence to the integrity of each text. To take Scripture
            seriously must mean allowing it to be as diverse as it really is, rather
            than trying to integrate it doctrinally in a way that it resists.

            Having said that, I agree that John and Paul are not approaching things from
            a fundamentally different doctrinal position. But I have become convinced of
            that by studying the texts each in their own right.

            Ian Paul
            ----------
            >From: "Don K. Preston" <dkpret@...>
            >To: <revelation-list@yahoogroups.com>
            >Subject: Re: [revelation-list] Re: Babylon: Rome or Jerusalem
            >Date: Wed, 5 Sep 2001 08:43:12 -0700
            >
            >Ian, has raised good questions of course, but not, in my view, questions
            >that are unanswered.
            >First, we have Paul's statement that he and John, who I would accept as the
            >author of the Apocalypse, were not in disagreement in their gospel.
            >Second, Paul preached the hope of Israel in his eschatology, and John was
            >also anticipating the fulfillment of the promises made to Israel.
            >Third, Paul and John both write about a common theme, the New Jerusalem
            (not
            >to mention martyr vindication). In Galatians 4, Philippians 3, and
            >(depending on the Pauline authorship), Hebrews 12, Paul sets forth his idea
            >of the New City in a context of contrast between Old Jerusalem and the New.
            >It would seem to me that one would have to reject either Paul's statement
            of
            >gospel accord between he and John, disprove Johannine authorship of
            >Revelation (which of course, in itself would not prove disjunction between
            >"John" and the Pauline corpus, and prove a different situation between Paul
            >and the Apocalypse.
            >So far, I have not been persuaded that any of this can be proven.
            >The accord and agreement between the Pauline epistles and Revelation is
            >consistent thematically and doctrinally so far as I can see. I find no
            >reason to posit a conflict either in doctrine, or circumstances between the
            >two authors.
            >Thus, I don't have a problem with intertextuality.
            >
            >Don K.
          • Ed Garcia
            In Rev. Paul s response to Mr. Preston he says: Hmmm. And how clear is substitutionary atonement in Revelation? More often than not the book of Revelation
            Message 5 of 27 , Sep 6, 2001
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              In Rev. Paul's response to Mr. Preston he says:

              "Hmmm. And how clear is substitutionary atonement in Revelation?"

              More often than not the book of Revelation refers to Jesus as the Lamb. As I
              understand it, Jesus as sacrificial Lamb definitely suggests the idea of
              substitutionary atonement. When the Lamb takes the scroll the elders respond
              by saying "Worthy are You to take the book and to break its seals; for You
              were slain, and purchased for God with Your blood men from every tribe and
              tongue and people and nation." The idea of redemption is one of the dominant
              themes of the prophecy.
            • Don K. Preston
              Ian, I will try to address some of the issues that you have raised. Thanks for the input and comments. My thoughts interjected below. Don K ... From: Ian
              Message 6 of 27 , Sep 6, 2001
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                Ian, I will try to address some of the issues that you have raised. Thanks
                for the input and comments.
                My thoughts interjected below.
                Don K
                ----- Original Message -----
                From: "Ian Paul" <ian.b.paul@...>
                To: <revelation-list@yahoogroups.com>
                Sent: Wednesday, September 05, 2001 3:17 PM
                Subject: Re: [revelation-list] Re: Babylon: Rome or Jerusalem


                >
                > Don
                >
                > There is an interesting question here on where the burden of proof lies.
                If
                > I understand correctly, then for your argument to be valid you need a
                number
                > of things all to be true:
                >
                > -Paul's statement of agreement with John has particular implications in
                terms of what they both write
                Response: Yes, Paul's statement of agreement between he and John would have
                directly implications for what they both write. I have never found the
                suggestions of disagreements and conflicts between any of the NT writers
                convincing in anyway. On the other hand, I find direct statements of
                agreement (Galatians 2; 2 Peter 3:15f, etc). Given these statements, the
                burden of proof that John and Paul did disagree would seem to be on the one
                that says they did disagree.

                > This John is the author of Revelation
                Response: I made note of this in my other post. Even if one were to prove
                that the John of Galatians 2 was not the author of Revelation, (I am not
                convinced at all of this suggestion), one would still have to concretely
                prove that this John was in disagreement with Paul. I see no evidence of
                this.


                >They are writing with similar concerns and into similar situations.
                Response: The concerns in Paul and the Apocalypse are certainly similar in
                many regards. The issues of persecution, martyr vindication, the New
                Creation, the fulfillment of Israel's prophetic hopes at the eschatological
                consummation, all play a major role in Pauline theology. And, these are very
                important themes in Revelation as well. Thus, as I suggested earlier,
                thematically, Paul and Revelation are related.

                >
                > For my question to raise problems, only one of these be weak.
                >
                > I think it would be very hard to argue that 'the New Jerusalem' expressed
                in
                > this way is a major theme of Paul. Justification by faith, the new
                > eschatological era of the Spirit, the expectation of the redemption of all
                > creation, yes, but 'New Jerusalem'? Hmmm. And how clear is substitutionary
                > atonement in Revelation?
                Response: To suggest that the new eschatological era of the Spirit, and the
                redemtion of creation were significant to Paul but that the New Jerusalem
                was not, is, I believe, to draw a line of delineation that is not found in
                scripture. The New Creation included the life of the Spirit, and assuredly
                involved the New Jerusalem.
                Further to ask "how clear is substituionary atonement in Revelation" is, it
                seems to me, to argue ex silencio. Because John does not provide a lengthy
                discourse on the atonement does not mean it is not present (Revelation 5,
                7), nor does it mean that he would disagree with Pauline thought. I think
                Kaylor's suggestion, (Paul's Covenant Community), while made in his
                discussion of the book of Romans, is valid in regard to Revelation as well.
                The word covenant might not appear in Romans, but the thought is dominant.
                Likewise, the word atonement might not appear in Revelation but the thought
                lies behind much of what is written.
                Finally on this issue, the New Jerusalem was sufficiently important to Paul
                that provided the ground for his discussion of the rejection of the Old
                Jerusalem, the reception of the inheritance, the identity of the true seed
                of Abraham, etc--which incidentally, are issues addressed in Revelation.

                >
                > For myself, I think the question of authorship is difficult to prove. And
                if Revelation
                > is even a few years later than Paul, then the Christian community is in a
                > very different relationship with Judaism (and therefore the Empire
                vis-a-vis
                > the fiscus judaicus), and the whole dynamic has changed.
                Response: This takes, it seems to me, for granted that Revelation was
                written later than Paul. I am not convinced of that at all. Instead, I find
                that the issues of Revelation were the identical issues confronting Paul at
                a very early stage, even the eating of meats sacrificed to idols (Romans 14;
                1 Cor. 10; Rv. 2-3).

                >
                > And given the diversity of situations and concerns we already have in the
                NT
                > (cf Romans v Cor v Heb v James v John) we surely need to start with the
                > assumption that John has his own agenda, rather than that we can use other
                > parts of the NT for exegesis of Revelation. There is a question here of
                the
                > extent to which, even in principle, we can read one text through another
                > without doing violence to the integrity of each text. To take Scripture
                > seriously must mean allowing it to be as diverse as it really is, rather
                > than trying to integrate it doctrinally in a way that it resists.
                Response: I would heartily disagree that we need to start with the
                assumption that Paul and John had their own agenda. I am convinced that
                there was in fact, a unifying principle lying behind their writings, and
                that is the fulfillment of the promises made to Israel, and they both state
                that in their writings. If the promises made to Israel was the guiding
                principle/issue for both writers (not to mention the other NT writers) then,
                we have every reason to look for unity and thus, inter-textuality is not
                only tenable but proper. When Peter said that Paul wrote of the New
                Creation, just as he, (Peter), did, I do not expect to find disagreement, I
                expect to find harmony. As I stated above, given statements like this, it is
                incumbent on the one positing disagreement/conflict between the authors to
                prove that Peter was wrong, or misguided, and that Paul did not actually
                write the same things he did.
                >
                > Having said that, I agree that John and Paul are not approaching things
                from
                > a fundamentally different doctrinal position. But I have become convinced
                of
                > that by studying the texts each in their own right.

                Finally, I still do not feel that the issues of Matthew 23--->1
                Thessalonians 2:15f---Revelation have been addressed. It seems to me that we
                are being asked to virtually ignore the parallels between the texts, even
                though they are thematically identical. Further, I have pointed out that
                Paul, in agreement with what Jesus said about the filling the measure of
                sin/sufferring in Matthew 23, said that God had set forth the apostles "last
                of all, as men condemned to die." This agrees with the picture of Revelation
                17-18, which does not carry the theme of martyrdom beyond the apostles.
                Since Jesus limited the framework of persecution to his generation, his
                apostles and Jewish culpability, I think it very significant that the
                Apocalypse stays within those strictures.

                Well, that is more than enough. Thanks again. I enjoy the exchange.
                Don K.


                >
                > Ian Paul
                > ----------
                > >From: "Don K. Preston" <dkpret@...>
                > >To: <revelation-list@yahoogroups.com>
                > >Subject: Re: [revelation-list] Re: Babylon: Rome or Jerusalem
                > >Date: Wed, 5 Sep 2001 08:43:12 -0700
                > >
                > >Ian, has raised good questions of course, but not, in my view, questions
                > >that are unanswered.
                > >First, we have Paul's statement that he and John, who I would accept as
                the
                > >author of the Apocalypse, were not in disagreement in their gospel.
                > >Second, Paul preached the hope of Israel in his eschatology, and John was
                > >also anticipating the fulfillment of the promises made to Israel.
                > >Third, Paul and John both write about a common theme, the New Jerusalem
                > (not
                > >to mention martyr vindication). In Galatians 4, Philippians 3, and
                > >(depending on the Pauline authorship), Hebrews 12, Paul sets forth his
                idea
                > >of the New City in a context of contrast between Old Jerusalem and the
                New.
                > >It would seem to me that one would have to reject either Paul's statement
                > of
                > >gospel accord between he and John, disprove Johannine authorship of
                > >Revelation (which of course, in itself would not prove disjunction
                between
                > >"John" and the Pauline corpus, and prove a different situation between
                Paul
                > >and the Apocalypse.
                > >So far, I have not been persuaded that any of this can be proven.
                > >The accord and agreement between the Pauline epistles and Revelation is
                > >consistent thematically and doctrinally so far as I can see. I find no
                > >reason to posit a conflict either in doctrine, or circumstances between
                the
                > >two authors.
                > >Thus, I don't have a problem with intertextuality.
                > >
                > >Don K.
                >
                >
                > To unsubscribe from this group, send an email to:
                > revelation-list-unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com
                >
                >
                >
                > Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/
                >
                >
                >
              • Don K. Preston
                That is why I referred to Rv. 5, and 7 due to the referents to the redeeming shed blood. Atonement is very much present. I probably did not communicate what I
                Message 7 of 27 , Sep 6, 2001
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                  That is why I referred to Rv. 5, and 7 due to the referents to the redeeming
                  shed blood. Atonement is very much present. I probably did not communicate
                  what I meant clearly enough however. Thanks for the additional comment.
                  Don K
                  ----- Original Message -----
                  From: Ed Garcia <Ed.Garcia@...>
                  To: <revelation-list@yahoogroups.com>
                  Sent: Thursday, September 06, 2001 3:31 PM
                  Subject: [revelation-list] Re: Babylon: Rome or Jerusalem


                  > In Rev. Paul's response to Mr. Preston he says:
                  >
                  > "Hmmm. And how clear is substitutionary atonement in Revelation?"
                  >
                  > More often than not the book of Revelation refers to Jesus as the Lamb. As
                  I
                  > understand it, Jesus as sacrificial Lamb definitely suggests the idea of
                  > substitutionary atonement. When the Lamb takes the scroll the elders
                  respond
                  > by saying "Worthy are You to take the book and to break its seals; for You
                  > were slain, and purchased for God with Your blood men from every tribe and
                  > tongue and people and nation." The idea of redemption is one of the
                  dominant
                  > themes of the prophecy.
                  >
                  >
                  > To unsubscribe from this group, send an email to:
                  > revelation-list-unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  > Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/
                  >
                  >
                  >
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