PMW 2020-022 by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.
A reader recently responded to an aside comment that I made in an article on the Olivet Discourse. Though the issue is not a major one, it is an interesting one nevertheless. And it is at least potentially helpful for better understanding the matter before us.
THE INTERPRETIVE CONCERN
The reader writes:
“I can’t imagine why you would think that Mt 25: 31 & 32 is not a parable. Sheep and goats are metaphors which is exactly what makes a parable a parable.”
Thanks for reading my posts, and taking the time to interact. Much appreciated!
However, I believe you are mistaken in assuming that because “sheep and goats are metaphors” that this is what “makes a parable a parable.” Just a quick observation regarding your statement about metaphors and parables: we speak in metaphors all the time today without anyone claiming we are speaking in parables. You are apparently working with an inadequate definition of a parable.
Your comment indicates that you have not done any extensive work in dealing with parables. Defining a “parable” is a lot more complex than you suppose. I have a dozen books on the parables of Jesus in my library. They invariably have to wrestle with the definition of a “parable.” Defining “parable” is a widely debated issue in New Testament interpretation.
But now regarding your basic concern, which is found in your statement: “I can’t imagine why you would think that Mt 25:31 32 is not a parable.”
I would admit that there are, in fact, many scholars who believe that the Sheep and Goats Discourse is a parable. However, I do not believe they are correct; and I am not alone in this. I will be presenting numerous observations on Matthew 25:31–46 by leading scholars that deny that the passage is a parable. No one should respond to these men by complaining: “I can’t imagine why you would think that Mt 25: 31 & 32 is not a parable.” Continue reading
PMW 2019-026 by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.
In this article I will offer a brief review of an important and helpful new book on the eschatology of Jesus, Jesus and the Future. To paraphrase a well-known biblical proverb, we might say that “the writing of many books on prophecy is endless.” And too many of current prophecy books are downright useless, so that we must confess “that such is wearisome, for the eye is not satisfied with seeing charts and graphs, nor is the ear filled with hearing Antichrist and Rapture predictions.” But this is one of the rare prophecy books that is well worth reading.
Review of Jesus and the Future: Understanding What He Taught about the End Times, by Andreas J. Köstenberger, Alexander E. Stewart and Apollo Makara (Wooster, Ohio: Weaver, 2017). Paperback, 196 pp.
Köstenberger, Stewart, and Makara have written a helpful summary of Jesus’ eschatological teaching that is aimed at evangelical laymen in our confused times. They have designed this small work to “cut through the maze of end-time teaching” that has so befuddled contemporary evangelical thought (p. 17). Continue reading
PMT 2015-081 by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.
In Revelation 20 we have the one section of Revelation that extends beyond the near-time indicators. John speaks of the “thousand years” in which Christ reigns with his martyred saints (Rev 20:4–7). In 20:11 we read of the Great White Throne of God. John informs us that “the heaven and earth fled away” at the setting of the judgment scene.
But what does the fleeing away of the heaven and earth mean? This is the question I will answer in this blog article.
In Rev 20:11 John adds a description regarding the enthroned one. He states that he is the one “from whose presence earth and heaven fled away, and no place was found for them.” According to Scripture, the physical universe will be physically transformed through fiery cleansing to make way for the consummate new heavens and new earth (2Pe 3:10–12; cp. Ps 102:25–27; Isa 51:6; Mt 5:18; 24:35). Continue reading