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Thursday, March 15, 2012

Eschatological and Scatological

James and John, sons of Zeedee

I was driving around in Vero Beach, Florida, and Kathy in the back seat asked if I believed in the Mayan end-of-time thing coming up at the end of 2012.
I said that the Mayan calendar was just going to go to  zero and reset. Although there were a lot of scarey stories among the Mayan mythology, there was not a full fledged Twilight of the gods or End-of-Times as we are used to..., that takes a bunch of people with a Christian background to take every weird story that comes along and then change it into The End of the World As We Know It.
Ask Harold Camping; he predicted the end at least twice in 2011.

I said that some Christians just never heard an end of time tale that they didn't grab hold of: charter a plane and print your tickets and reserve picnic tables in Jonestown!
"Never saw an End-of-Times Party I didn't like!", I said.
Kathy said, "I'll bring the kool-aid!"
I never understood why people are so in love with end of time, so much so that they will fools of themselves over and over again trying to pin it down to year, month, day, hour, and minute... or commit suicide.

I do not think John of Revelations is John the son of Zebedee, either. I believe the Book of Revelations was describing what was going on at the time and possibly what was to happen in the near future, not some distant point in time.
The expression "whore of Babylon" only appears here. Elsewhere, Jerusalem itself is described as a harlot for running after false gods, but the whore of Babylon is John's expression alone: not bad for a fisherman with little schooling. He had to not only learn to write and read extremely well, but he had to delve into ancient philosophies about Logos and such. Remembering that he and James were the "Sons of Thunder", I think Zebedee let fly with rich and complex invectives when irritated.., such, perhaps, as when his sons left him high and dry mending the nets alone.
Even though it is intriguing to consider "whore of Babylon" to be one of Zebedee's more descriptive curses, I doubt it.

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