Nerfing Revelation

Don Carson, gospel preacher and brilliant New Testament scholar, is coming out with a new commentary on Revelation that will sum up how he’s taught Revelation and Matthew 24 for years – that many prophecies (such as “time, times and half a time”) cannot be interpreted literally because the apocalyptic genre is the primary lens through which the book should be viewed. Since Revelation is an example of that genre, popular in post-exilic Jewish lit, the book’s details have to be interpreted with a knowledge of the genre.

I may post more later on the specific passages that Carson misinterprets, but this is my quick thought for now:

Dismissing literal interpretations of Revelation because of genre is the same as dismissing literal interpretations of Psalms – you can’t gloss over Psalms as mere poetry, nor is Revelation mere apocalypse. When God speaks, it transcends genre. If Carson’s method of interpretation were applied to Psalms, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” would forever be David’s.

Don’t cage God!


~ by bradybush on December 24, 2009.

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