Read this before Teaching Revelation (or other Apocalyptic texts)
Interpreting, preaching, and teaching through books like Revelation, Zechariah, Ezekiel, and the latter half of Daniel can be a bit intimidating. There are some great technical resources out there for better understanding these apocalyptic texts (pride of place goes to Collins, The Apocalyptic Imagination), but most of these are pretty technical.
There is, however, a very short, readable, and practical resource that will help anyone process this important and powerful genre, and it’s freely available: David Helm’s An Approach to Apocalyptic Literature: A Primer for Preachers. Whether you’re an expert on this type of thing, or quite intimidated by it, this is a helpful little guide.
[…] or “parables” or “morality tales.” No, the rest of the book is a prophecy and an apocalypse, but defining what that means is beyond the confines of this post. So keeping matters relatively […]
[…] Two genres? That’s not enough for Revelation! There’s a third genre hiding from us. It’s right there in the title. The word “Revelation” could have an “ordinary” meaning, “that which is revealed.” But in Jewish and Christian circles in the ancient world it also had a very specialized meaning. It could refer to a kind of religious literature, a genre. The Book of Revelation is also an “Apocalypse.” We have several apocalypses from the ancient world. We have apocalypses in the Bible (portions of Ezekiel, Zechariah, Isaiah, Daniel 7-12) and we have apocalypses around the Bible (1 Enoch was quite popular, though never considered canonical). I’ve written more about that here. […]