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The Apocalypse of St. John: A Commentary on the Greek Version

The Apocalypse of St. John: A Commentary on the Greek Version

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  • ISBN-13: 9781533468161
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform
  • Release Date: May 26, 2016
  • Pages: 432 pages
  • Dimensions: 0.98 x 9.0 x 6.0 inches

Overview

IN January 1906 the present writer published a book on "The Apocalypse, The Antichrist, and The End," and in 1908 a supplementary book of "Essays on the Apocalypse." These books were designed to show that the Revelation was given in the year 67, that the Letters to the Seven Churches were predictions concerning the Seven Ages of the Church of Christ, and that the Jewish and Roman themes of the book were historic forecasts, which have come true. These works were so well received and favourably reviewed, notwithstanding their many shortcomings, that the author ventures now to publish a "Commentary" on the Greek text of the Apocalypse. Further study especially of the original Greek of S.J ohn has strengthened the conclusions reached in the works above mentioned. The usual custom has been followed of giving the Revelation its ancient title, “The Apocalypse." But that word seems to have had an obscuring influence on the study of the book. Its real title is "The Revelation of Jesus Christ." Many of those who have neglected Ie The Apocalypse," as being a difficult and mysterious book, would have felt compelled to read Ie The Revelation of Jesus Christ." A slight sketch of the Book and its period will enable the reader to appreciate its contents. We pass over the Preface and the Letters to the Seven Churches, and come to the first or Jewish theme. This is a dramatised representation of the end of the Jewish Dispensation. At the time of writing, i.e., in the year 67, this climax was in sight. The armies of Nero were marching on Jerusalem. In the eyes of S. John and his brethren it was an epoch of transcending impo~tance. The establishment of the Kingdom of Christ preached by our Lord and His Apostles was immediately looked for. It was the turning-point of religious history, when Christianity took over the inheritance of the Jews. Delivered from its earliest foe, Judaism, Christianity was next imperilled by the hostility of the Caesars evidenced by Caesar worship. Nero's persecution of the Church was in progress when S. John went to Patmos. Nero's extraordinary prominence in the history of the Church as the destroyer of the Ancient Temple and bloody persecutor of the nascent Church invested him with peculiar horror in the eyes of Hebrew Christians. He was looked upon as a kind of demoniacal manifestation. Christians and heathens alike thought that there was something supernatural about him. Traces of this feeling will be noticed in the Roman theme of the Apocalypse, in which Nero appears as the great protagonist of paganism. The Roman theme is a dramatised version of the history of Caesar worship and the punishment it brought upon Rome and the Caesars, symbolically rendered. It ends with the fall of Rome about the beginning of the sixth century. Then follows a prediction of a thousand years of peace for the Church. After which we are told the Devil must be loosed for a little time. The predictions of Revelation have been marvellously fulfilled as history shows us. The Chosen People were given prophets to warn them of the future. It is natural to suppose that the people chosen to replace them would be given a like advantage. No one can study this Revelation without seeing that the mantle of prophecy has fallen on S. John. He is our Christian prophet, and this Book contains his predictions, meant for the guidance of the Chief Bishops of the Church, down to the end of time. The last two Popes have been moved to ordain a special searching of the Holy Scriptures. Leo XIII. wrote: "Let Catholics cultivate the science of criticism, as most useful for the right understanding of Holy Scripture. They have our strenuous approval. Nor do we disapprove if the Catholic interpreter, when expedient, avails himself of the work of nonCatholics.

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