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Is there a message for the people of today in the Book of Revelations?

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Introduction

Jacqueline Brown - 12 Jerome Theology Coursework Is there a message for people today in the book of Revelation? Before we can decide whether or not there is a message for the Christians of today in the book of Revelation we first need to understand the book itself and the reason why it was written. With the eschatological imagery it is a piece of apocalyptic scripture containing what some people believe to be prophetic visions of the destruction of the world others however believe it to be an account of important first century events and some see it as an allegorical account of God's battle against Satan. There are many questions still left unanswered but the two main unanswered questions are when it was written and who it was written by. Although some question whether John the apostle did write Revelation what is clear is that the style and symbolism of Revelation and the fourth gospel are too similar to not have been written by the same man. As to the date Revelation was written, there are two main arguments that scholars see as possible. A.D. 69 and A.D. 96. The majority of scholars hold the opinion that it was written in A.D. 69 as the Temple being measured is mentioned in Revelation 11 and the Temple was torn down by the Romans during the Jewish Roman war in A.D.70. ...read more.

Middle

The letters seem to be filled with specific things that his intended audience would be aware of suggesting that Revelation was written as a historical account of the first century 'I know your affliction and your poverty. However the fact that the letters address the chances of following false teachers and letting their love for Jesus be eroded 3:9 'I will make those of the synagogue of Satan who say they are Jews and are not...' it could be suggested that these letters were written as a message to all Christians throughout time to ignore false leaders and to follow 'the words of the holy one, the true one.' The letters are often viewed as a way of strengthening faith in Jesus, that he would someday end the persecution of Christianity, and so it could be argued that they have a message for the believers of today who are questioning their faith. There is further evidence that suggests it was written for that particular audience in that John says 'Do not fear what you are about to suffer' this suggests that John is giving the message to the Christians of that specific time referring to perhaps the destruction of the Temple and the following years of persecution at the hands of the Romans and that God would someday restore justice. ...read more.

Conclusion

However those who see the book of Revelation as a historical retelling of the important events during the first century tend to see that Revelation held many messages for those early Christians living in Rome during the persecutions but not many if any relevant messages for people of today in a society completely different to when it was written. In my opinion it depends on how you look at Revelation. Whether you see it as a historical retelling of important and meaningful events for the Christians during the first century, or as the prophetic work foretelling the end of time and the second coming of Christ. I believe the book should be looked at as symbolic of the persecution the early Christians had to endure. The book of Revelation was written for a new type of Christian who had been expelled from the temple and had to build up an entirely new religion, it is my opinion that John was writing for that specific audience, that he wanted to help them with their faith when feeling as if they had been abandoned by God. This does not however mean there is no message at all in the book of Revelation for people of today's society. If there is a message throughout the entirety of Revelation it is that you need to have faith no matter what we endure in this world that God will bring peace and justice eventually. ...read more.

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