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Rev 11

February 25, 2010

For Fogey:

That the two witnesses symbolize the church in its role of witnessing to the world is shown by the identification of them as lampstands (11:4), the symbol of the churches in chapter 1, where the seven churches are represented as seven lampstands (1:12, 20).  That they are only two does not indicate that they are only part of the whole church, but corresponds to the well-known biblical requirement that evidence be acceptable only on the testimony of two witnesses (Deut. 19:15).  They are therefore the church insofar as it fulfils its role as faithful witness.  As witnesses they are also prophets (11:3, 10), modelled especially on the Old Testament figures of Elijah and Moses (11:5-6; cf. 2 Kings 1:10-12; 1 Kings 17:1; Exod. 7:14-24).  But they are not Elijah and Moses redivivi, since the powers of both Elijah and Moses are attributed to both witnesses (11:6).  Nor do Moses and Elijah here stand for the law and the prophets.  Both are prophets.  As prophets who both confronted the world of pagan idolatry they set the precedent for the church’s prophetic witness to the world.

— Richard Bauckham, The Theology of the Book of Revelation, 85

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One Comment leave one →
  1. Fogey permalink
    February 25, 2010 7:56 pm

    I’m gonna say that he is probably not pre-trib. 🙂

    I don’t know, the lampstands = church thing is kinda reaching. 7 lampstands makes sense, as God’s human witness in the world. That will not end when the church is gone. It will just happen in a different way, I think.

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