Christ's parables are not about the prophecies of Revelation, nor are they in any way expressed in the same way. Christ's parables are designed as teaching mechanisms meant to connect with Christ's already expressed literal explanation in order to help generalize the overall concept, which are especially helpful for the more abstract thinkers. I should know, I'm studying for a career in teaching. It's a basic teaching tool.
I dunno Aquila. It feels like you're not even trying; like its something you just don't want to mess with. And that's fine. But please don't respond then. That way the discussion can continue, rather than stop.
Jesus said that He only explained things plainly to His disciples, and that the parables were meant to keep the blind unaware of what was coming. So it is with Revelation. Contrary to your opinion, it is not chickenscratch. It is well designed actually.
My intentions are not to stop your discussion, and trust me, I have done much more than just try. I have gotten many much more hateful responses from many so called Christians when I explain to them about my views concerning the history and authenticity of the bible.
I started out like most all other Christians out there with the belief in the inerrancy of the bible concept. However, after researching the overall creation of the modern day bible and reading so many of the other radical and/or contradicting views of it, as well as the lost books of both the old AND new testaments, I personally came to the conclusion that the most important and authentic books of the bible are simply the four gospels. So as you can see, many have gotten angry and yelled "blasphemey!" Despite my explainations of how following only Jesus Christ not only nullifies nearly all contradictions, brings nearly all Christians together as opposed to seperate, brings you into a closer relationship to him and him alone, and not only that but it is actually commanded by him for us to do so. So please, telling me I'm simply not trying hard enough to understand the very material I have personally researched for years, simply because I came to a different conclusion is a bit of an insult to me. Especially since My conclusion has most likely brought me much more grief than yours has.
Now, concerning the quote: "Jesus said that He only explained things plainly to His disciples, and that the parables were meant to keep the blind unaware of what was coming." I would like for you to post exactly which scriptures he said this in. I was personally under the impression that his message was direct the truth, meant to be expressed to all the people of the world, and that his parables were designed to further people's understanding as opposed to with hold information for the 'elect.'
John's book of Revelation is practically chicken scratch compared to Christ's parables. Revelation is in no way told as a narrative, nor is it a clever teaching method. It's more like one of the one time posters on here that posts a thread about some off the wall lunacy with absolutely no supportive evidence, referances, and least of all proof.
Okay. I see where you're coming from. I just think you are approaching apocalyptic literature from the wrong perspective. Indeed, it isn't a narrative, but it has narratives in it (Rev. 12-14, for example.) It isn't an instructional piece either, but it has instruction in it (like the messages to the seven churches in Rev. 2-3.) Its not lunacy either. I just don't think you're explored it very well.
Apocalyptic writing is its own genre of literature. In Revelation, the history is established in chapter 1. In chapters 2-3, the intended audiences are instructed how to stay faithful and what the results of their choices would be. Chapters 4-9 describe the times of the Jews, showing that it would come to an end with Jerusalem's destruction, similar to Jesus' parables (though less clear, yes.) Chapter 10 interrupts the sequence to explain a new prophecy about the times of the Gentiles (10:11.) Chapter 11 shortly explains what would happen during that time and how it would all end, culminating with the return of Jesus at Jerusalem upon the blasting of the seventh trumpet. Chapters 12-14 given an account of the persecution of the saints and their deliverance from the Babylonian Exile to the return of Jesus. So the theme is faithfulness in persecution, which would have been relevant to Smyrna, Pergamos, and Philadelphia. Chapter 15 introduces the God's wrath against those that made war on the saints and chapter 16 describes how that wrath would play out upon the 'beast' and those that took the mark of its name. Chapter 17 describes the destruction of the Roman Church and chapter 18 indulges in hyperboly to demonstrate the dangers of loving money and power; a message relevant to Laodicea and Thyatira. Finally, chapter 19 details the return of Jesus and chapter 20 describes the setting up of his kingdom. Chapters 21-22 describe all things being made new and the fulfillment of all of God's promises.
These are all these that Jesus spoke about.
In your responses, you said nothing about the audience (seven churches), the historical background laid out in chapter 1, or the themes mentioned in the book.
Jesus' Gospels flow in the same manner as Revelation, such as Mattew 22:1-14's parable of the wedding feast, which described the destruction of Jerusalem for rejecting the Gospel and killing the saaints; and the kingdom spreading to the Gentiles, as shown in Rev. 7, Rev. 10:11, Rev. 11, and Rev. 12:17. It even describes someone who crept into the kingdom that had no business being there, which Rev. 13 shows is the false prophet and those that take the mark of the beast. This is also reiterated at the end of Rev. 20.
What I think is important about Revelation is that it is the only piece in the New Testament that thoroughly describes what would happen to Jerusalem as well as what would happen during the times of the Gentiles, something the rest of Scripture, save for Daniel 7, is silent about.
I understand quite a bit about apocalyptic liteerature actually, and have actually studied nostradamus and many other 'end of the world' prophets. However I will admit that I most likely haven't studied them quite as thoroughly as you have. I have read many prophetic scriptures, however I never came to the conclusion that they have a more organized setup. I understand what you're saying. However regardless of how organized the prophecy is, it doesn't necessarily make it true. Many end of the world prophecies have been made, all written by imperfect man, and all so far with a 0% accuracy rate. Therefore forgive me I find myself skeptical of yet another imperfect man's prediction, regardless of whether Christian or not.
Also, please explain to me your interpretation of Matthew 22: 1-14 in greater detail. I re-read it and could find no indication of it describing the 'destruction of Jerusalem for rejecting the Gospel and killing the saints.'
I appreciate it. I have been realistic about it, otherwise I would not have ever abandoned futurism. I am on a quest for truth, and I can't shake the nagging feeling that Revelation is true.
If one could deduce that Revelation was written before Jerusalem's destruction, then it becomes even more true.
Once again, I am not attempting to derail or diminish your discussion. I'm simply expressing my beliefs concerning the book of Revelation, and my own personal faith in Jesus Christ. I personally find that following Christ only is more realistic than anything, and that adding to or taking away from his message is just not his intention.