Looking forward to the beginning of the Nativity Fast, which starts on Tuesday, 15 November, I have decided to read and re-read several times the Book of Revelation. I have already begun by reading the first three chapters yesterday and re-reading chapter one today. The commentary I am going to use is part of the outstanding series, Brazos Theological Commentary on the Bible, Joseph Mangina's Revelation. It is amazing so far and I have not yet progressed beyond the introduction
Apocalypse means something like "lifting of the veil." The veil is lifted to reveal something that was previously hidden. There are those who have already seen what is behind the veil. Hence, when Jesus returns He will be revealed to those who did not already know Him. Mangina, introducing a long quote by Douglas Harink from Paul among the Postliberals: Pauline Theology Beyond Christendom and Modernity, writes, "A properly theological understanding of apocalypse begins when we learn to use the term with a primary christological inflection." He then cites Harink:
Most simply stated "apocalypse" is shorthand for Jesus Christ. In the New Testament, in particular for Paul, all apocalyptic reflection and hope comes to this, that God has acted critically, decisively, and finally for Israel, all the peoples of the earth, and the entire cosmos, in the life , death, and resurrection, and coming again of Jesus, in such a way that God's purpose for Israel, all humanity, and all creation is critically, decisively, and finally disclosed and effected in the history of Jesus ChristI Mangina's phrase, "the apocalypsing of Jesus Christ."