James the Just on the Apocalypse of John

Yeah yeah yeah, I know I know, what does James the Just have to do with the Apocalypse of John? Well, it turns out that the MySpace version of James the Just responded to another user about his views on the Apocalypse.

The other MySpace user (dubbed “Cyclist” a.k.a David G. Hobbs) writes:

Just studying your work in the New Testament this morning. What do you think of Revelation?. I have my doubts as to whether this should be in canon but if its not inspired then why has God allowed us to have it?. Too many cults have abused this work.

James the Just replies:

Revelation is a fantastic book! I agree, however, that so many folks have abused its message that it is often neglected. Nonetheless it is still inspired. I tend to lean towards an interpretation of the book of Revelation that sees it as a cryptic slam against the Roman Empire. While the book does have some futuristic material, it is mostly meant to encourage those who have suffered persecution for their faith. (Genuine persecution, not the type that comes from being obnoxiously “christian” at the drinking fountain.) John speaks to an audience who is facing the wrath of the largest empire on earth – a military political machine that devours everthing in its path, all for the sake of “pax romana” (the peace of Rome). John in a sense pulls the wool from over their eyes (not unlike what Morpheus does with Neo in the movie, the Matrix). John is shown that Rome is not the final word. Instead, the risen Christ is the final word, and one day the kingdoms of this world will become the kingdom of God. Not some “pie in the sky sweet by and by” saccrine sweet vision of pudgy angels floating on clouds in heaven, but the kingdom of God of righteousness and peace, where mourning is forever gone, and sadness and sickness is no more. In the meantime, however, John knows that the world is not as it should be now. Still, God is in control. The call to his readers is to endure. Endure the persecution, and don’t believe the message of Rome, that materialism and military security under the guise of an emperor who sees himself as God is the only way to peace. The message is much the same today. Sometimes the christians who read it don’t know it, but they have bought the very lies it has tried to expose.

That’s my view of the Apocalypse of John – Apocalypse means unveiling, and all of the imagery is meant to help his readers see that the world as they normally see it is but a shadow of what it is intended to be.

Pardon my rantings, but I do love that book.

So, from this interchange we can tell that (A.) James the Just is not a dispensationalist, and (B.) He watches movies like the Matrix.

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