As promised, I am beginning a series on Revelation. I will be using material I have collected for the purpose of teaching a Young Adult Sunday School Class.
As a kind of prologue, I would like to make a few opening comments of a general nature:
1) Although I do have a definite opinion on issues such as the Tribulation and Millennium, I do not intend to present this study as a means of forwarding those opinions. In fact, I intend to say rather little about particular eschatological schemata.
2) While I intend to be somewhat scholarly in my approach, bringing forth the various options for disputed passages, my goal is to make a presentation with potential for personal application, and informed by pastoral concerns.
3) My belief is that Revelation has two primary thrusts: pastoral and ethical. Revelation is written to and for people enduring persecution. It is under such circumstances that the question "How do we live our faith?" is being asked and answered.
4) My format will be a mixture of verse for verse and paragraph for paragraph exegesis. There are times when verse for verse is entirely appropriate, even necessary, to bring out the full meaning of the text. Yet there are also times when verse by verse can encourage one to become bogged down with minutiae that do not really make a contribution to our understanding commensurate with the time and energy they require. I will strive to strike an appropriate balance.
Next time, we will begin with the first few verses of Revelation 1.