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The Christian Scriptures

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Revelation and other apocalyptic writings

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This book is sometimes called "The Revelation of St. John the Divine," "The Revelation of Jesus Christ," "The Revelation," "The Apocalypse," "The Revelation of John," or "The Revelation to John." It is the final book in the Christian Scriptures (New Testament) and thus concludes the Bible.  The Greek title of the book translates as the "Apocalypse of John."  The Greek word "apokalypsis," from which the English word apocalypse was derived, means "revelation, disclosure or unveiling."

Opinions differ about the significance of this book:

bullet

Many Christian liberals and progressives point out that Jewish apocalyptic writings were quite common during the 1st centuries BCE and CE, and always referred to a massive, imminent change expected to occur in the author's very near future. Such Christians often interpret the prophecies in Revelation to refer only to the world during the late 1st century and early 2nd century CE.

 

bulletMany conservative Christian individuals and groups have used the contents of this book to predict a wide range of dates for the end of the world in their future. So far, they have one factor in common: none have come true.

Topics covered in this section:

bulletAbout apocalyptic writings
 
bullet The Revelation to John:
bulletUnderstanding Revelation, Topics covered. Jesus in Revelation.
bulletWho wrote Revelation?
bulletInterpreting Revelation
 
bulletSignificance of the "number of the beast:" 666 (or perhaps 616)
 
bulletControversy over its acceptance into the official canon
 
bulletRevelation 22 -- perhaps the most misunderstood biblical passage

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