Paper 4
FYS 102.X31
   by Jenny Zimmerman

Due Thursday, April 10, at 3:05pm

Consider the following excerpts from the chapter "Apocalyptic Literature," in The New Oxford Annotated Bible.

Apocalyptic literature is a class of Jewish and Christian writings that first appeared about 250 B.C. and continued well into the opening centuries A.D.  It frequently reflects a negative view of this world and expresses the hope for salvation in new creation or in another life. It served to comfort and encourage the faithful in difficult times. (363)

Apocalyptic eschatology is distinguished from prophecy, however, by the expectation of a judgment of the dead and of reward or punishment in a future life. (363)

Apocalypticism is also characterized by dualism. There are two opposing personified forces in the universe, one good and the other evil. (363)

Dualism also modifies the eschatology of the apocalypses. There are two distinct and separate ages, the present age and the age to come. The second is not a natural development of the first, but is a new creation. At present, human history is under the domination of the power of evil; consequently it is evil and corrupt. God, however, has set a limit to the era of wickedness and will intervene at the appointed time to execute judgment. (363)

If Martin Luther King, Jr., aimed to "comfort and encourage the faithful in difficult times," as did the apocalyptic writers described above, in what ways did his dream conform or deviate from the dualism and eschatology found in the book of Revelation?

"I Have a Dream"

May 17, 1956

"The Death Of Evil Upon The Seashore"

Service of Prayer and Thanksgiving
Cathedral of St. John the Divine
New York, New York

"Letter from a Birmingham Jail"