Revelation from Idealist Approach?

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Posts 1645
Rick | Forum Activity | Posted: Fri, Jun 28 2019 4:29 PM

Can anyone recommend a resource in Logos that explains the idealist/spiritual approach of Revelation? I would like something more in depth than a "Four Views" book. I have Dennis Johnson's commentary preordered but would like to add more to my library in order to be able to study it well.

Thanks in advance.

Peace  Smile

Romans 14:19 (NRSV)
19 Let us then pursue what makes for peace and for mutual upbuilding.

Posts 2300
Beloved | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Jun 28 2019 5:11 PM

Rick:

Can anyone recommend a resource in Logos that explains the idealist/spiritual approach of Revelation? I would like something more in depth than a "Four Views" book. I have Dennis Johnson's commentary preordered but would like to add more to my library in order to be able to study it well.

Thanks in advance.

Two highly respected commentaries that cover this view are BECNT Osborne 

https://www.logos.com/product/8080/baker-exegetical-commentary-on-the-new-testament-revelation and NICNT Mounce

https://www.logos.com/product/37593/the-new-international-commentary-on-the-new-testament-the-book-of-revelation 

Meanwhile, Jesus kept on growing wiser and more mature, and in favor with God and his fellow man.

International Standard Version. (2011). (Lk 2:52). Yorba Linda, CA: ISV Foundation.

Posts 1645
Rick | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Jun 28 2019 5:17 PM

Thank you Beloved! I had no idea these two authors practiced this view. I’ll take a look at them. 

Peace  Smile

Romans 14:19 (NRSV)
19 Let us then pursue what makes for peace and for mutual upbuilding.

Posts 2300
Beloved | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Jun 28 2019 5:33 PM

Rick:

Thank you Beloved! I had no idea these two authors practiced this view. I’ll take a look at them. 

Not  to mislead, they cover this view in their study of Revelation. Osborne spends more time with it than Mounce. Two well respected authors.

Meanwhile, Jesus kept on growing wiser and more mature, and in favor with God and his fellow man.

International Standard Version. (2011). (Lk 2:52). Yorba Linda, CA: ISV Foundation.

Posts 1631
Allen Browne | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Jun 28 2019 5:44 PM

Rick:

Can anyone recommend a resource in Logos that explains the idealist/spiritual approach of Revelation? I would like something more in depth than a "Four Views" book. I have Dennis Johnson's commentary preordered but would like to add more to my library in order to be able to study it well.

Thanks in advance.

For a quite straightforward approach without breaking the bank, Michael Wilcox does a good job in the BST series:
https://www.logos.com/product/47514/the-message-of-revelation

Posts 2300
Beloved | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Jun 28 2019 6:10 PM

To give you an idea of what Osborne has to offer

Idealist. This popular approach argues that the symbols do not relate to historical events but rather to timeless spiritual truths (so Hendriksen, Hoekema, P. Hughes). As such it relates primarily to the church between the advents, that is, between Christ’s first and second comings. Thus it concerns the battle between God and evil and between the church and the world at all times in church history. The seals, trumpets, and bowls depict God’s judgments on sinners at all times, and the beast refers to all the anti-Christian empires and rulers in history. Thus the book describes the victory of Christ and his people down through history. The millennium in this approach is not a future event but the final cycle of the book (so Hendriksen) describing the church age. There are certain strengths in this view: the centrality of theology for the book, the relevance for the church at all times, the symbolic nature of the book. But it has certain weaknesses as well: the absence of historical connections, the failure to see the future nature of many of the prophecies or to connect them in any way with history (as it seems the text does in several instances).

 Osborne, G. R. (2002). Revelation (p. 20). Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Academic.

As opposed to Wilcock

 Opinions about its historical references are broadly of four kinds: the preterist view, that it describes in veiled language events of John’s own time, and nothing more; the futurist, that it is largely a prophecy of events still to come; the historicist, that it is a chart of the whole of history from Christ’s first coming to his second, and beyond; and the idealist, that between messages for the first century and prophecies of the far future it deals chiefly with principles which are always valid in Christian experience. Opinions also divide over the particular matter of the ‘millennium’, the thousand-year period described in chapter 20; premillennialism, postmillennialism, and amillennialism will be considered in the introductory essay to Scene 7 (pp. 175–182).

 Wilcock, M. (1986). The message of Revelation: I saw heaven opened (pp. 23–24). Leicester, England; Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press.

And here is Mounce

A fourth method of interpretation is the idealist or timeless symbolic. Its proponents hold that Revelation is not to be taken in reference to any specific events but as an expression of those basic principles on which God acts throughout history. More than a century ago Milligan wrote, “We are not to look in the Apocalypse for special events, but for an exhibition of the principles which govern the history both of the word and the Church.” The Apocalypse is thus a theological poem setting forth the ageless struggle between the kingdom of light and the kingdom of darkness. It is a “philosophy of history wherein Christian forces are continuously meeting and conquering the demonic forces of evil.” The idealist approach continues the allegorical interpretation that dominated exegesis throughout the medieval period and still finds favor with those inclined to minimize the historical character of the coming consummation. It is supported by the obvious fact that Revelation employs symbol as its major literary device. Its weakness lies in the fact that it denies to the book any specific historical fulfillment. From the idealist’s point of view the symbols portray an ever present conflict: there exists no necessary consummation of the historical process

 Mounce, R. H. (1997). The Book of Revelation (pp. 28–29). Grand Rapids, MI: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co.

Meanwhile, Jesus kept on growing wiser and more mature, and in favor with God and his fellow man.

International Standard Version. (2011). (Lk 2:52). Yorba Linda, CA: ISV Foundation.

Posts 1645
Rick | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Jun 28 2019 6:31 PM

Excellent! Thanks for the additional input Allen and Beloved. 

Peace  Smile

Romans 14:19 (NRSV)
19 Let us then pursue what makes for peace and for mutual upbuilding.

Posts 3115
Mattillo | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Jun 29 2019 8:04 AM

Isn't Beale from Nigtc idealistic?

Posts 2300
Beloved | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Jun 29 2019 9:57 AM

Mattillo:

Isn't Beale from Nigtc idealistic?

From TOC

Major Interpretative Approaches

The Preterist View

The Historicist View

The Futurist View

The Idealist View

The View of This Commentary: Eclecticism, or a Redemptive-Historical Form of Modified Idealism

 Beale, G. K. (1999). The book of Revelation: a commentary on the Greek text (p. viii). Grand Rapids, MI; Carlisle, Cumbria: W.B. Eerdmans; Paternoster Press.

Meanwhile, Jesus kept on growing wiser and more mature, and in favor with God and his fellow man.

International Standard Version. (2011). (Lk 2:52). Yorba Linda, CA: ISV Foundation.

Posts 1631
Allen Browne | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Jun 29 2019 5:45 PM

Mattillo:

Isn't Beale from Nigtc idealistic?

Beale describes himself as eclectic, i.e. taking the best from each of the approaches. So, yes, he includes (but is not limited to) the Idealistic approach.

Beale's strength is in recognizing how Revelation reuses images images from the Old Testament. Wordy, but good.

The other book you might enjoy if you're exploring this approach is Richard Bauckham, The Climax of Prophecy: Studies on the Book of Revelation. London; New York: T&T Clark: A Continuum Imprint, 1993. This only became available in Logos recently. It's less of a verse-by-verse commentary, more of a big-picture overview of how to approach Revelation, once again setting it in the canonical story, as the climax of the whole canon.

Posts 1645
Rick | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Jun 29 2019 6:17 PM

I‘m continuing to watch this thread. Great discussion and recommendations. I’m researching each and every recommendation. There’s a lot for me to evaluate before I make a purchase. Thanks again to all.

Peace  Smile

Romans 14:19 (NRSV)
19 Let us then pursue what makes for peace and for mutual upbuilding.

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