Carey presents an introduction to the elements of apocalyptic discourse in the Hebrew Bible, the intertestamental texts of the Apocrypha and Pseudepigrapha, and the Jewish and Christian apocalyptic texts. He seeks to help modern readers perplexed by the rampant and...
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Carey presents an introduction to the elements of apocalyptic discourse in the Hebrew Bible, the intertestamental texts of the Apocrypha and Pseudepigrapha, and the Jewish and Christian apocalyptic texts. He seeks to help modern readers perplexed by the rampant and somewhat outrageous depiction and interpretation of apocalyptic literature to see apocalyptic discourse as a flexible set of resources that early Jews and Christians could employ for a variety of persuasive tasks. Examining each of the literary works that exhibit apocalyptic discourse, Carey briefly introduces the date and language of each text and shows its basic contents. He examines the particular topics and purposes of the work and concludes by showing a way to read particular examples of apocalyptic discourse as a whole in its own setting with its own purposes.
"One of the strengths of Carey's work is its breadth--the book explores both canonical and noncanonical apocalyptic literature, including writings that fit the technical genre of an apocalypse and those writings that are not apocalypses but contain apocalyptic ideas and motifs. The advantage of this inclusive approach is that it leads to a more balanced and accurate understanding of the nature and function of apocalyptic thought. Too often people's perception of apocalyptic discourse is shaped primarily by what they know about the biblical books of Daniel and Revelation. Students and experienced scholars alike will benefit from Carey's informed and judicious discussions of the origins, structures, and contents of these Jewish and Christian texts. Especially noteworthy is his sensitivity to the rhetorical and theological dimensions of these writings."
Greg Carey (Ph.D., Vanderbilt University) is Professor of New Testament, Lancaster Theological Seminary. Carey has also written: "Ultimate Things: An Introduction to Jewish and Christian Apocalyptic Literature" (2005), and "Elusive Apocalypse: Reading Authority in the Revelation to John" (1999).