Presentation on theme: "Future Based Eschatology Identifying the key themes."— Presentation transcript:
Future Based Eschatology Identifying the key themes
Future Based Eschatology This is the traditional Christian belief that at some point in the future, the current world will end. This event is known as the ESCHATON. The 2 nd Coming of Jesus The Resurrection of the Dead The period of Tribulation The final battle The final Judgement Different Christian denominations have different beliefs about the specific order of events.
A bit of background... If the author of Revelation is understood to be the same author of John’s Gospel, it can be dated to around 90AD There was a mixture of Jewish and Greek influences which coloured the way the early Church formulated their new beliefs One clear line of influence was from Jewish Apocalyptic expectation – many of the key themes can be identified in John’s vision (Revelation)
Key themes Jewish history follows a pattern of prosperity, apostasy, suffering, hope, salvation, prosperity. It is known as the “Salvation History Cycle” Much of Jewish apocalyptic literature reflects the hope of the people during times of suffering Hope of an age of future glory brought about by the coming of the Messiah prosperityapostasysuffering hope salvation
JeremiahEzekiel This is what the LORD says: "Restrain your voice from weeping and your eyes from tears, for your work will be rewarded," declares the LORD. "They will return from the land of the enemy. 17 So there is hope for your future," declares the LORD. "Your children will return to their own land. Then he said to me: "Son of man, these bones are the whole house of Israel. They say, 'Our bones are dried up and our hope is gone; we are cut off.' 12 Therefore prophesy and say to them: 'This is what the Sovereign LORD says: O my people, I am going to open your graves and bring you up from them; I will bring you back to the land of Israel.
Influence on John Many of the themes identifiable in the Old Testament writings of the Prophets (Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel) can be seen reflected in the Revelation of John Physical resurrection Establishment of the Kingdom Destruction / Restoration Reward for the righteous (Judgment)
Physical resurrection The Jewish prophets used physical resurrection as a metaphor for the resurrection of the nation of Israel established by the Messiah For John, it is more likely to be on an individual level – illustrated by the raising of Lazarus & the resurrection of Christ. There is a clear expectation that all will face judgment together. This is stated in the Nicene Creed, the Christian statement of belief
Key Questions to consider: 1.Should John’s vision be interpreted literally? What philosophical issues are raised if we do? 2.On what basis are judged? Being a good person or having faith? What issues does each raise? 3.The dead are raised to face judgement. What issues are raised with the idea of physical resurrection? 4.To what extent can belief in future based eschatology be considered meaningful?
The Final Judgment 1. What are people judged on? – Being a Christian? – Being a good person? 2. What philosophical issues are there in sending some people to Hell? 3. Is the idea of Universal Salvation any better? Think about the following: benevolence, mercy, justice, Hick, freewill.