LITR 4368 Literature of the Future
lecture notes


Take copy of Parable, presentation handouts, prsn pref sheets, quizzes, class notes, syllabi print-outs, Bible, slinky

 

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presentations

pre-midterm essay 1

Model Assignments

 

 

Learning priorities today:

.1. narratives of time / future, esp. Creation-Apocalypse as linear (midterm essay 1)

2. literary terms: symbols, narratives, romance narrative

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Apocalypse narrative: Genesis, and Revelation

 

1. Creation-Apocalypse narratives exemplify the linear model of time, but what parts of today's texts suggest a more complex model or dimensions beyond "Point A to Point B?"

2. Narrative genres: How does the plot-pattern of Revelation resemble the plot narrative of a romance? Pay attention to the gradual revelation of the central character of Jesus—how does he appear? How is he like a hero in a romance-rescue story? How are the Satanic figures like the villain? (instructor will lead)

3. Symbols are among the most striking and obvious devices of apocalyptic literature, e.g. popular references to "666," "The Beast," "Anti-Christ," "The Whore of Babylon," "Signs in the Heavens," etc. What can we learn about symbols' functions in literature generally from their power in apocalyptic literature?

Special questions for End-Times literature and reading or teaching scripture as literature. (We can't get to all of these, but they suggest millennial literature's many points of interest for literary and cultural criticism.)

4. If Revelation and other apocalyptic texts are among the most popular parts of the Bible, why? What literary appeals? How does Revelation seem different from other Biblical or scriptural texts like the Gospels? (Worth remembering that Eastern Orthodox churches don't include Revelation in the Bible.)

5. What impulses for social or personal change, or what social consequences, result from apocalyptic texts and thought? How does apocalyptic thinking influence attitudes toward decline or progress?

6. Jesus was crucified around 30-36AD, and the Book of Revelation was written between 70 and 95AD. Matthew 24.34 records Jesus saying, "This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled." What social consequences to perennial belief that "ours is the last generation?"

 

 

1. Creation-Apocalypse narratives exemplify the linear model of time, but what parts of today's texts suggest a more complex model or dimensions beyond "Point A to Point B?"

Genesis 1. In the beginning

Revn 1.8: I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending

1.17 the first and the last:

repetition of patterns, recurrence of apocalyptic conventions from Daniel to Revelation

Genesis 9 And out of the ground made the Lord God to grow every tree that is pleasant to the sight, and good for food; the tree of life also in the midst of the garden, and the tree of knowledge of good and evil. . . .

Genesis 3.22 And the Lord God said, Behold, the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil: and now, lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever: 23 therefore the Lord God sent him forth from the garden of Eden, to till the ground from whence he was taken.  24 So he drove out the man: and he placed at the east of the garden of Eden cherubim, and a flaming sword which turned every way, to keep the way of the tree of life.

Revn 22.2 the tree of life [compare Genesis 2.9, 3.22],

Daniel 10.6 His body also was like the beryl [a colored crystal], and his face as the appearance of lightning, and his eyes as lamps of fire

Revn 1.14: His head and his hairs were white like wool, as white as snow; and his eyes were as a flame of fire; [phantasmagoric style]

Matthew 24.15 When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoso readeth, let him understand:)

Mt 24    30 And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. ["clouds" echoes or anticipates "Rapture"-vision in 1 Thessalonians & Revelation 1: 7 Behold, he cometh with clouds]

 

cyclical nature of restoration of tree of life, so that end loops back to beginning

Even with the end of the world, there's some kind of morning after, e.g., heaven, the heavenly city, the thousand years

Matthew (no one knows): Even Revelation is mysterious about nature or sequence of time

time itself as great natural mystery that we approach from different angles, different ways of knowing

everyday experience--glad the day is over, BUT next day starts over

That took forever. That wasn't so bad.

 

As far as we know, there's only one reality (which is enormous, microscopic, infinite and complicated).

Each mind, idea, or text gives us one window on that shared reality.

 

Apocalypse turns into evolution, evolution to apocalypse, depending on perspective.

+ alternative times . . .

 

2. Narrative genres: How does the plot-pattern of Revelation resemble the plot narrative of a romance? Pay attention to the gradual revelation of the central character of Jesus—how does he appear? How is he like a hero in a romance-rescue story? How are the Satanic figures like the villain? (instructor will lead)

 

Daniel 7 23 Thus he said, The fourth beast shall be the fourth kingdom upon earth, which shall be diverse [different] from all kingdoms, and shall devour the whole earth, and shall tread it down, and break it in pieces.

 

romance narrative / narrative genres

previous state of perfection: Garden of Eden, Christ among the Apostles, or Apostolic era

fall, separation (Adam & Eve exiled from Eden, cursed to labor; Christ crucified, resurrected, ascended; disciples left to own leadership)

disasters build on each other > state of sin, believers beset by struggle, opposition

rescue by hero = savior

restoration of previous state (tree of life restored in heaven)

 

attractions or appeals of romance narrative:

cf. Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God paras. 2, 4, 9, 20, 24, 25 but 34-35

audience / reader receives vicarious excitement of being exposed to danger and destruction followed by relief or release or rescue (cf. roller-coaster, thrill-rides, San Andreas)

conclusion as restoration of earlier state of union, completeness, security

 

Question: How does this description of End-Times narrative conform to popular narratives, as in disaster / action movies?

 

What are risks and value-added to recognize literary qualities in scripture?

 

risks: desacralize scripture, makes scripture "one text of many"

value-added: see sacred working through nature or everyday reality, bridge gap b/w spiritual and material (God in world, world as working-out or development of divinity in everyday materials and life)

 

Revelation 14.14: And I looked, and behold a white cloud, and upon the cloud one sat like unto the Son of man, having on his head a golden crown, and in his hand a sharp sickle.

Rev 19.20: And the beast was taken, and with him the false prophet that wrought miracles before him, with which he deceived them that had received the mark of the beast, and them that worshipped his image. These both were cast alive into a lake of fire burning with brimstone.
21: And the remnant were slain with the sword of him that sat upon the horse, which sword proceeded out of his mouth: and all the fowls were filled with their flesh.

 

 

 

3. Symbols are among the most striking and obvious devices of apocalyptic literature, e.g. popular references to "666," "The Beast," "Anti-Christ," "The Whore of Babylon," "Signs in the Heavens," etc. What can we learn about symbols' functions in literature generally from their power in apocalyptic literature?

Two points about symbols:

1. Since symbols are images, they often have a visual or emotional impact:

Much of the appeal of apocalyptic texts is their powerful visual symbols:

Daniel 7

Revn 12.1: And there appeared a great wonder in heaven; a woman clothed with the sun, and the moon under her feet, and upon her head a crown of twelve stars:

Revn 9

9: And I went unto the angel, and said unto him, Give me the little book. And he said unto me, Take it, and eat it up; and it shall make thy belly bitter, but it shall be in thy mouth sweet as honey. [phantasmagoric style]
10: And I took the little book out of the angel's hand, and ate it up; and it was in my mouth sweet as honey: and as soon as I had eaten it, my belly was bitter.

unusual poetic juxtapositions of images

4.6 sea of glass

15.2 sea of glass, mingled with fire [nuclear winter]

21.21 12 gates were 12 pearls

 

 

2. Symbols are part of language and are always being translated or interpreted.

Symbols can't mean anything you want them to mean, but they can often mean more than one thing to multiple viewers.

Symbols always operate in a code, network, or context of meanings. Therefore symbols may change when contexts change

Meanings of symbols can change over time.

 

Daniel 7. 16 I came near unto one of them that stood by, and asked him the truth of all this. So he told me, and made me know the interpretation of the things. [prophecy's need to be interpreted (and re-interpreted)]

Daniel 8  20 The ram which thou sawest having two horns are the kings of Media and Persia. [interpretation of symbols]

2.17: He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the hidden manna, and will give him a white stone, and in the stone a new name written, which no man knoweth saving he that receiveth it. [great symbol: very suggestive, impossible to conclude meaning]

Revn 1.20 The seven stars are the angels of the seven churches: and the seven candlesticks which thou sawest are the seven churches.

 

Any image / symbol can turn into something else, become something new, or shift from meaningless to meaningful

 

 

Daniel 7.24 ten horns = ten kings

Revn 1.20 The seven stars are the angels of the seven churches: and the seven candlesticks which thou sawest are the seven churches.

Note to Revn 1: [7 candlesticks / churches, 7 stars / angels: 7 as holy number (days of Creation) = numerology. In dreams and prophecies one thing often turns into another, revealing a code behind every sign or phenomenon; in literature repetitions are a way of ordering, unifying + mnemonic or memorization device.]

Revn 2.11  He that hath an ear, let him hear

2.17: He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the hidden manna, and will give him a white stone, and in the stone a new name written, which no man knoweth saving he that receiveth it. [great symbol: very suggestive, impossible to conclude meaning]

Daniel 7. 16 I came near unto one of them that stood by, and asked him the truth of all this. So he told me, and made me know the interpretation of the things. [prophecy's need to be interpreted (and re-interpreted)]

Daniel 8  20 The ram which thou sawest having two horns are the kings of Media and Persia. [interpretation of symbols]

Daniel 11.11 And the king of the south shall be moved with choler [anger], and shall come forth and fight with him, even with the king of the north: and he shall set forth a great multitude; but the multitude shall be given into his hand. [These kings of south and north have been applied to many political situations since]

 

Matthew 24.   3 And as he sat upon the mount of Olives, the disciples came unto him privately, saying, Tell us, when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world?

 

 

"The Beast," Antichrist

for early Christians, Roman Emperor Nero

for early (and some later) Protestants, the Pope

King George in American Revolution

Napoleon

Hitler

Saddam Hussein

Osama bin Laden

 

 

"Babylon"

Rome

Berlin

America (for Rastafarians)

back to Baghdad!

 

 

text stays alive (becomes poetry or scripture) by being adaptable to new meaning . . . What does it mean now?

 

 

 

 

 

objective 3. Is the future "written" (i. e., set, fixed, programmed, and usually apocalyptic) or "being written" ("open-ended" and usually evolutionary)?

 

 

 

Special questions for End-Times literature and reading or teaching scripture as literature. (We can't get to all of these, but they suggest millennial literature's many points of interest for literary and cultural criticism.)

4. If Revelation and other apocalyptic texts are among the most popular parts of the Bible, why? What literary appeals? How does Revelation seem different from other Biblical or scriptural texts like the Gospels? (Worth remembering that Eastern Orthodox churches don't include Revelation in the Bible.)

How describe? mystical, visionary

highly visual

 

sublime or spectacle

Daniel 7.10. A fiery stream issued and came forth from before him: thousand thousands ministered unto him, and ten thousand times ten thousand [sublime scale] stood before him: the judgment was set, and the books were opened.

Matthew 24   29 Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken: [spectacular or sublime imagery]

Revn [6.12-17: sublime]

Revn 12.1: And there appeared a great wonder in heaven; a woman clothed with the sun, and the moon under her feet, and upon her head a crown of twelve stars:

 

 

Dramatic, simple time-line

sudden, explosive change

 

 

Order of time: dramatic, near future

1.1 things which must shortly come to pass

16.15 I come as a thief

18.10 . . . in one hour is thy judgment come.

22.10 the time is at hand

but “Little Apocalypse” Mark 13. 32 But of that day and that hour knoweth no man . . . .  Watch ye therefore: for ye know not when the master of the house cometh . . . Watch.

apocalyptic future is usually imagined as happening to "us"--not some distant future of people we don't know

future becomes personalized

What will you do?

 

other literary qualities

Popularity of Revelation: romance narrative?

"Things are getting bad," but escape, transcend, rise above as in "rapture"

pleasure of threat as long as you feel secure.

Vivid imagery

 Define image: language that appeals to senses (mostly visual, but also other senses as well)

Contrast with gospels and especially letters in New Testament—cross, tomb, garden, but otherwise a few mountains, fields, etc.; plus characters

Images from Revelation: Lamb, horses (red, black, white, etc.), beasts, thunder, earthquake (6.12), sun, moon, stars, vials, seals, blood, rivers, fountains, Whore of Babylon, angels, dragon

6.12, 14 moon became as blood . . . heaven departed as a scroll

 

unusual poetic juxtapositions of images

4.6 sea of glass

15.2 sea of glass, mingled with fire

 

 

phantasmagoric, psychedelic, surreal, free-association images

10.8-  eat the book

21.21 12 gates were 12 pearls

 

images appeal to imagination, give reader significant materials with which to interpret  phenomena

 

 

emotional / cultural appeals / influences of Revelation / apocalyptic narrative

pro:

comfort

2.7 To him that overcometh . . . the tree of life

7.17 shall wipe away all tears

give up to greater power (as to parents)

genuine departure from cycles of existence

21.1 new heaven and new earth

pleasure of being chosen, special, our generation

utopia descending

21.10

 

 

 

 

5. What impulses for social or personal change, or what social consequences, result from apocalyptic texts and thought? How does apocalyptic thinking influence attitudes toward decline or progress?

 

negative:

fatalistic (doomed): if world is going to end soon anyway, why bother?

self-righteous, vengeful: I or we see the truth and the light, and everything would be perfect if others would too, but they'll suffer soon enough and see that we were right

 

reality not here but elsewhere, not on earth but in heaven, afterlife

 

positive:

urgency, possibility of rapid change; humanity not doomed to endless cycles of rise and fall but can make progress, achieve a new reality, escape limits of nature

motivation to save world

 

reality not limited to our perennial errors; "a change is going to come"

 

decline or progress?

 

6. Jesus was crucified around 30-36AD, and the Book of Revelation was written between 70 and 95AD. Matthew 24.34 records Jesus saying, "This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled." What social consequences to perennial belief that "ours is the last generation?"

Mt 24   34 Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled.

millennialism

protestantism

 

 

3. Is the future "written" (i. e., set, fixed, programmed, and usually apocalyptic) or "being written" ("open-ended" and usually evolutionary)?

Revelation as "written future":

angel unrolls scroll

6.12, 14 moon became as blood . . . heaven departed as a scroll

1.11, 19 write in a book . . . things which shall be hereafter

5 a book written within and on the back side, sealed with seven seals . . . open the book

13.8 names written in book of life

summary: future written, already “in the books”

 

   36 But of that day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but my Father only.

  

   42 Watch therefore: for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come.

 

   44 Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh. [argument from example]

 

 

 

 

 

appeal of apocalyptic narrative

5. Is the future "written" (i. e., set, fixed, programmed, and usually apocalyptic) or "being written" ("open-ended" and usually evolutionary)?1.8 Alpha and Omega (Greek alphabet)

 

Idea that "the future is written" may be comforting even if it's a dystopian future—"Written" implies that at least there's a plan, a purpose, a "master-narrative" to a world of apparently random change or chaos

 

"God has a plan for your life"

 

less positively, "That's my story and I'm sticking with it." People prefer simple stories to complicated ones.

 

bumper sticker:

 

 

 

 

 

 

modern education: it's testable!

 

true enough for people who want to believe it

 

respect but never confident enough to stop there

 

power of scripture or great literature: survives human change, questioning, doubt

 

 

 

 

linear time, simple & dramatic story

modern secular, multicultural view of world is that lots of different realities are always competing for attention, dominance

may be fair and tolerant, but difficult to learn so many stories!

Bible as model of linear time, beginning and ending +

we are the chosen, they are the damned

 

 

future written / being written?

1.11, 19 write in a book . . . things which shall be hereafter 

5 a book written within and on the back side, sealed with seven seals . . . open the book

13.8 names written in book of life

in contrast to evolution, where the future is constantly being written and revised, therefore open-ended

summary: future written, already “in the books”; therefore an ending?

But 3.12 Him that overcometh . . . I will write upon him the name of my God . . .

 

 

 

 individual salvation (plus or minus family, acquaintances)

Evangelical Protestantism is also highly compatible with freemarket capitalism

 

dramatic division (winners & losers, saints and sinners)

 

fatalism

if we're not long for this earth, why act to solve problems?

ecological consideration--is there a linkage between evangelicalism and gas-guzzling?

 

 

 

 

 

Notes on Revelation's literary qualities

1.3 the time is at hand

1.11 What thou seeest, write in a book

1 . . . seven candesticks, stars, churches

1.20 the mystery of the seven stars

2.7 To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the tree of life, which is in the midst of the paradise of God.

2.10 Fear none of those things which thou shalt suffer

2.17 fight against them with the sword of my mouth

2.20: Notwithstanding I have a few things against thee, because thou sufferest that woman Jezebel, which calleth herself a prophetess, to teach and to seduce my servants to commit fornication, and to eat things sacrificed unto idols.
2.21: And I gave her space to repent of her fornication; and she repented not.

2.29 He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches.

 

3.1: And unto the angel of the church in Sardis write;

3.3: Remember therefore how thou hast received and heard, and hold fast, and repent. If therefore thou shalt not watch, I will come on thee as a thief, and thou shalt not know what hour I will come upon thee. [cf. Matthew 24: 43 ("Little Apocalypse")]

3.8 behold, I have set before thee an open door

3.12: Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out: and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God: and I will write upon him my new name.

3.20: Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup [dine] with him, and he with me.

 

4.1: After this I looked, and, behold, a door was opened in heaven: and the first voice which I heard was as it were of a trumpet talking with me

4.3 a rainbow round about the throne, in sight like unto an emerald.

4.5 seven lamps of fire burning before the throne, which are the seven Spirits of God.

4.6 a sea of glass like unto crystal [phantasmagoric style]: and in the midst of the throne, and round about the throne, were four beasts full of eyes before and behind. [the four beasts are traditionally associated with the four Gospels: Matthew (winged human), Mark (winged lion), Luke (winged ox), & John (eagle)]

 

5.1: And I saw in the right hand of him that sat on the throne a book written within and on the backside, sealed with seven seals.

5.6  Lamb as it had been slain, having seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven Spirits of God sent forth into all the earth.

5.8 8: And when he had taken the book, the four beasts and four and twenty elders fell down before the Lamb, having every one of them harps, and golden vials full of odours, which are the prayers of saints.

 

6.1 the Lamb opened one of the seals, and I heard, as it were the noise of thunder

Four horsemen

6.9: And when he had opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of them that were slain for the word of God, and for the testimony which they held:
6.10: And they cried with a loud voice, saying, How long, O Lord, holy and true, dost thou not judge and avenge our blood on them that dwell on the earth?

6.12: And I beheld when he had opened the sixth seal, and, lo, there was a great earthquake; and the sun became black as sackcloth of hair, and the moon became as blood;
13: And the stars of heaven fell unto the earth, even as a fig tree casteth her untimely figs, when she is shaken of a mighty wind.
14: And the heaven departed as a scroll when it is rolled together

 

7.17: For the Lamb which is in the midst of the throne shall feed them, and shall lead them unto living fountains of waters: and God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes.

 

8.1: And when he had opened the seventh seal, there was silence in heaven about the space of half an hour.

8.7 hail and fire mingled with blood, and they were cast upon the earth: and the third part of trees was burnt up, and all green grass was burnt up.

the third part of the sea became blood;
8.9: And the third part of the creatures which were in the sea, and had life, died; and the third part of the ships were destroyed.

 

9.1 the key of the bottomless pit.

9.7: And the shapes of the locusts were like unto horses prepared unto battle; and on their heads were as it were crowns like gold, and their faces were as the faces of men.
9.8: And they had hair as the hair of women, and their teeth were as the teeth of lions
. [phantasmagoric style]

 

10.1. And I saw another mighty angel come down from heaven, clothed with a cloud: and a rainbow was upon his head, and his face was as it were the sun, and his feet as pillars of fire: [phantasmagoric style]
10.2: And he had in his hand a little book open

10.9: And I went unto the angel, and said unto him, Give me the little book. And he said unto me, Take it, and eat it up; and it shall make thy belly bitter, but it shall be in thy mouth sweet as honey. [phantasmagoric style]
10.10: And I took the little book out of the angel's hand, and ate it up; and it was in my mouth sweet as honey: and as soon as I had eaten it, my belly was bitter.

 

11.7 the beast that ascendeth out of the bottomless pit shall make war against them

11.12 a great voice from heaven saying unto them, Come up hither. And they ascended up to heaven in a cloud [rapture?; cf. 1 Thessalonians 4]

11.19 And the temple of God was opened in heaven, and there was seen in his temple the ark of his testament:

 

12.1: And there appeared a great wonder in heaven; a woman clothed with the sun, and the moon under her feet, and upon her head a crown of twelve stars:
2: And she being with child cried, travailing in birth, and pained to be delivered.
3: And there appeared another wonder in heaven; and behold a great red dragon, having seven heads and ten horns, and seven crowns upon his heads.
4: And his tail drew the third part of the stars of heaven, and did cast them to the earth: and the dragon stood before the woman which was ready to be delivered, for to devour her child as soon as it was born.
5: And she brought forth a man child, who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron: and her child was caught up unto God, and to his throne.

12.7 war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels,

12.9: And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan

12.17: And the dragon was wroth with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed, which keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ.

 

13.1: And I stood upon the sand of the sea, and saw a beast rise up out of the sea, having seven heads and ten horns, and upon his horns ten crowns, and upon his heads the name of blasphemy.
2: And the beast which I saw was like unto a leopard, and his feet were as the feet of a bear, and his mouth as the mouth of a lion: and the dragon gave him his power, and his seat, and great authority.  [phantasmagoric style]

13.18 the number of the beast: for it is the number of a man; and his number is Six hundred threescore and six. [666]

 

14.3: And they sung as it were a new song before the throne, and before the four beasts, and the elders: and no man could learn that song but the hundred and forty and four thousand, which were redeemed from the earth.
4: These are they which were not defiled with women; for they are virgins
.

14.8 Babylon is fallen, is fallen, that great city

14.9 If any man worship the beast and his image, and receive his mark in his forehead, or in his hand,
10: The same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb:

14.14 behold a white cloud, and upon the cloud one sat like unto the Son of man, having on his head a golden crown, and in his hand a sharp sickle.

14.18 gather the clusters of the vine of the earth; for her grapes are fully ripe.

14.20 blood came out of the winepress

 

 

15.1: And I saw another sign in heaven, great and marvellous, seven angels having the seven last plagues; for in them is filled up the wrath of God.
2: And I saw as it were a sea of glass mingled with fire: and them that had gotten the victory over the beast, and over his image, and over his mark, and over the number of his name

15.7 And one of the four beasts gave unto the seven angels seven golden vials full of the wrath of God

 

16.4 rivers and fountains of waters; and they became blood.

16.13: And I saw three unclean spirits like frogs come out of the mouth of the dragon, and out of the mouth of the beast, and out of the mouth of the false prophet.

16.16: And he gathered them together into a place called in the Hebrew tongue Armageddon.

16.19 the cities of the nations fell: and great Babylon

 

17.3 I saw a woman sit upon a scarlet coloured beast, full of names of blasphemy, having seven heads and ten horns.

17.5 upon her forehead was a name written, MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH.

17.7 I will tell thee the mystery of the woman, and of the beast that carrieth her,

17.18 the woman which thou sawest is that great city

 

18.2 Babylon the great is fallen, is fallen, and is become the habitation of devils

18.17 For in one hour so great riches is come to nought.

18.22: And the voice of harpers, and musicians, and of pipers, and trumpeters, shall be heard no more at all in thee; and no craftsman, of whatsoever craft he be, shall be found any more in thee; and the sound of a millstone shall be heard no more at all in thee;
18.23: And the light of a candle shall shine no more at all in thee; and the voice of the bridegroom and of the bride shall be heard no more

 

19.6 the voice of a great multitude, and as the voice of many waters, and as the voice of mighty thunderings, saying, Alleluia

19.7 the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready.

19.11 I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and he that sat upon him was called Faithful and True

19. 20: And the beast was taken, and with him the false prophet that wrought miracles before him, with which he deceived them that had received the mark of the beast, and them that worshipped his image. These both were cast alive into a lake of fire burning with brimstone.
21: And the remnant were slain with the sword of him that sat upon the horse, which sword proceeded out of his mouth: and all the fowls were filled with their flesh.

 

 

20.1: And I saw an angel come down from heaven, having the key of the bottomless pit and a great chain in his hand.
2: And he laid hold on the dragon, that old serpent, which is the Devil, and Satan, and bound him a thousand years,
3: And cast him into the bottomless pit, and shut him up, and set a seal upon him, that he should deceive the nations no more, till the thousand years should be fulfilled: and after that he must be loosed a little season.

20.12 I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works.

20.14: And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death.
15: And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.

 

21.1: And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea.
2: And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. [analogy]

21.4: And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.

21.5 I make all things new

21.10 that great city, the holy Jerusalem, descending out of heaven from God,
11: Having the glory of God: and her light was like unto a stone most precious, even like a jasper stone, clear as crystal;
12: And had a wall great and high, and had twelve gates, and at the gates twelve angels, and names written thereon, which are the names of the twelve tribes of the children of Israel:

21.18 the city was pure gold, like unto clear glass.

21.23 the city had no need of the sun, neither of the moon, to shine in it: for the glory of God did lighten it, and the Lamb is the light thereof.

 

22.2 the tree of life [compare Genesis 2.9],

22.7: Behold, I come quickly: blessed is he that keepeth the sayings of the prophecy of this book.

22.13: I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last.
14: Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city.
15: For without are dogs, and sorcerers, and whoremongers, and murderers, and idolaters, and whosoever loveth and maketh a lie.
16: I Jesus
have sent mine angel to testify unto you these things in the churches. I am the root and the offspring of David, and the bright and morning star.

 

Discuss blending of apocalypse and evolution

How are both present? How account for co-presence instead of co-exclusion?

Where do they diverge? Where do they meet?

 

apocalyptic narrative

Literary topics:

In Parable, is the future written or being written?

What is attractiveness to readers of apocalyptic theme?

 

appeal of apocalyptic narrative

 

background: different sects / denominations / traditions place different emphases on Revelation

Catholic church, Orthodox church, older Protestant "mainline" churches like Presbyterians, Lutherans, Episcopalians de-emphasize end-times.

Evangelical Protestant churches (e. g. fundamentalist Baptists, Assemblies of God, Pentecostal movement, Vineyard, new "corporate" churches like Grace Church on Gulf Freeway) tend to emphasize or welcome coming end-times.

When churches or religious movements start, Revelation is often a key text

Popular evangelism (e. g., televangelism) often refers to ideas central to apocalypse, e. g.

"Things are really getting bad out there."

"The signs are being fulfilled."

Popular religious fiction and media often features Apocalyptic themes

Left Behind series

Always movies and documentaries around with titles like Armegeddon, Signs of the Times, etc.--the fact that there were similar movies and titles a couple of years before does nothing to diminish their popularity--apparently an ever-fresh impulse

Plus secular apocalyptic stories; e. g., alien invasion stories

Independence Day

War of the Worlds

28 Days Later

Parable of the Sower