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Title: Preaching the End Times Better (Part 2): The Hermeneutics of Parousia
Source: 1517
URL Source: https://www.1517.org/articles/preac ... -hermeneutics-of-parousia-2023
Published: Mar 15, 2023
Author: John Bombaro
Post Date: 2023-03-15 18:32:07 by Charles_Byrd
Keywords: None
Views: 27

2Peter 3 proves a tour-de-force toward preaching the end times better. So far from being a locus classicus for the obliteration of the world, this epistle reinforces both the Lord’s justice in an assured judgment and, until that Final Day, mercy in forbearance. In other words, Saint Peter presents the End Times in clear categories of Law and Gospel as the outcome of Christological thinking. The former demands circumspection regarding a laissez faire disposition toward Christ’s final parousia with its righteous judgment and the latter drives those with ears to hear toward repentance and redeeming grace found in Christ alone. Either way, be it Law or Gospel, the person, word, and work of Christ determines eschatology. Christology determines eschatology. Following the argument and example of Peter presents today’s preachers with a template for better End Times preaching.

In verses 1-9 of 2 Peter 3, Peter reasserts a Christological paragon for End Times thinking. The death and resurrection of Jesus provide the hermeneutic for interpreting the movement of time and the outcome of the cosmos itself. Nothing else should be taught or preached in this regard. The opening verse calls his readers to remember what he, Peter, has previously written to them and the prophetic, dominical, and apostolic witnesses confirming the same teaching (2 Peter 3:2).[1] They will find nothing but consistency and confirmation in God’s Word and witness. These four sets of witnesses operate by the same hermeneutic: Christ determines and anchors the way of truth regarding human understanding and engagement with reality. It is the second time in this letter he has made this point (see 2 Peter 2:1) because, for Peter, there is no other legitimate hermeneutic for understanding the Scriptures which culminate in Christ and, consequently, how Christ then determines history and the outcome of the cosmos itself. Christology is a totalizing hermeneutic.

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