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Old Testament:

Genesis:

1  (Creation Week)      1:27a      2:4 and 2:15-3:7  (The ‘Second’ Creation Story and The Fall)      6:5-7:1  (~Noah)      6:8-9      6:10-9:19  (The Flood Story)      8:22, 9:6a, 9:9-17, 10:1-24      9:6a      12:16      17:1-17

Exodus:      6:2-8      33:12-17

Leviticus:      14:49-53      24:17-21

Numbers:      11:4-34      12:1-16

Deuteronomy:

8      9:6-13  (The Giving of the Law)      12:1-32      22:13-29      28:20-48

Joshua:      1

2 Samuel:      1:19-27     18:33

2 Kings:      22:1-23:30

2 Chronicles:      5:11-6:3      17:1-5

Job:       The entire book?      1      32:6-10

Psalms:

3      12      18      19:1      22      37:1-7      46      49      52:1b-5a      58      62      67      70      72:1-2      76      89:27-39      103:1      150      Robert Alden’s ‘Chiastic Psalms’

Proverbs:

1:20-33      10:15      11:19-20      26:10-19      31:10-31  (The Virtuous Woman)

Song of Songs:      The entire book      2:8-17

Ecclesiastes:      11:1-12:2

Isaiah:

1:18      1:21-26      2:3-5      3:1-8      5:20      6:10      28:15-18     56:1-8      56:9-12      59:1-3a     60:1-3

Jeremiah:      5:1-31      10:1-11      17:1-3

       Daniel:      2:26-30

Hosea:      13:14

Joel:      1:5-14      3:2-8

Amos:      2:11-12      5:1-17      5:24      8:11-9:15

Obadiah:      10-14

Haggai:      The entire book (2 chiasms)

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New Testament:

Matthew:

5:3-10  (The Beatitudes)     7:16-20      19:30      23:12      23:16-26     13:10-19

Mark:

The entire book      1:1-13      1:21-28      2:1-3:6      2:27      3:20-35      3:22-30      5:1-6      8:35-38     10:17-31      10:29b, 30, 31       10:35-41      11:9b-10      12:28-34      12:35-37      12:38-40      13:4-23  (The Little Apocalypse)      13:24-27      13:4-37

Luke:      1:68-79      4:16b-20      16:13      22:42

John:      5:19-30      17:1-5  (The Beginning of “The High Priestly Prayer”)

Acts:

2:1-21  (Pentecost)      2:22-36  (Peter Preaches on Jesus’ Resurrection at Pentecost)

Romans:      2:5b-11      8:38-39a      10:9-10      11:33-35      14:13-23

1 Corinthians:

1:19-29      7: 20-24      11:3-7 and 8-11      13:8-13  (Paul on Love)      15:1-20      15:35-44

2 Corinthians:      8:9      12:1-5

Galatians:     2:16     3:5-14      4:1-7      5:16-26  (The Fruit of the Spirit)

Ephesians:      1:2; 6:23-24      2:8-9      2:11-22      3:1-13      3:14-21

Philippians:      The entire book      1:15-17

Colossians:      1:3-9      1:9-23

1 Thessalonians:      1-2  (Paul’s earliest writing)     5:23

2 Thessalonians:      3:6-12

1 Timothy:      3:16

2 Timothy:      1:15-18      2:8-10

Titus:      The entire book

Philemon:      The entire book

Hebrews:      12:1-2

James:      The entire book

1 Peter:      2:17      3:16-4:5

1 John:      3:9

2 John:      The entire book

Jude:      The entire book

Revelation:

1:4b-8      1:4-3:22      3:7      12:1-17     14:9-11     21:1-5a

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Examples of Small Chiasmi:

Tiny Chiasmi – ‘Here a Chiasmus, There a Chiasmus …’

Chiasmus Excerpt – “Narrative Criticism of the New Testament”

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Additional Materials:

Recommended Readings and Sites

Chiasmus Verification Criteria

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consider_coverart

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I’m just going to post this. I’ll probably work on it some more at a later date.

For a brief overview of Haggai, see here:  https://www.gotquestions.org/Book-of-Haggai.html

The book of Haggai seems to have been written in two halves. Each half is a 9 part chiasmus. Note how both chiasms encourage the people to ‘consider (your ways)’ in sections D/D’, which is on either side of the center. Note also how similar the two centers (E) are – e.g., ~there will be a shortage of food and drink.

Peace.

 

First half of Haggai:

A

a    1:1  In the second year of Darius the king,

b    on the first day of the sixth month,

B

the word of the LORD came by the prophet Haggai to Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel, governor of Judah, and to Joshua the son of Jehozadak, the high priest saying,  //  2  “Thus says the LORD of hosts, ‘This people says, “The time has not come, even the time for the house of the LORD to be rebuilt. “‘”

C    3  Then the word of the LORD came by Haggai the prophet saying,  4  “Is it time for you yourselves to dwell in your paneled houses  //  while this house lies desolate?

D    5  Now therefore, thus says the LORD of hosts, “Consider your ways!

E    6  “You have sown much, but harvest little; you eat, but there is not enough to be satisfied; you drink, but there is not enough to become drunk; you put on clothing, but no one is warm enough; and he who earns, earns wages to put into a purse with holes.

D’   7  Thus says the LORD of hosts, “Consider your ways! 

C’    8  “Go up to the mountains, bring wood and rebuild the temple, that I may be pleased with it and be glorified,” says the LORD.  9  “You look for much, but behold, it comes to little; when you bring it home, I blow it away.  Why?” declares the LORD of hosts, “Because of My house which lies desolate,  //  while each of you runs to his own house.  10  “Therefore, because of you the sky has withheld its dew, and the earth has withheld its produce.  11  “And I called for a drought on the land, on the mountains, on the grain, on the new wine, on the oil, on what the ground produces, on men, on cattle, and on all the labor of your hands.”

B’

12  Then Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel, and Joshua the son of Jehozadak, the high priest, with all the remnant of the people, obeyed the voice of the LORD their God and the words of Haggai the prophet, as the LORD their God had sent him. And the people showed reverence for the LORD.  13  Then Haggai, the messenger of the LORD, spoke by the commission of the LORD to the people saying, “‘I am with you,’ declares the LORD.”  14  So the LORD stirred up the spirit of Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel, governor of Judah, and the spirit of Joshua the son of Jehozadak, the high priest, and the spirit of all the remnant of the people;  //  and they came and worked on the house of the LORD of hosts, their God,

A’

b’   15  on the twenty-fourth day of the sixth month

a’   in the second year of Darius the king.

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Second half of Haggai:

A    2:1  On the twenty-first of the seventh month, the word of the LORD came by Haggai the prophet saying,  2  “Speak now to Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel, governor of Judah, and to Joshua the son of Jehozadak, the high priest, and to the remnant of the people saying,  3  ‘Who is left among you who saw this temple in its former glory? And how do you see it now? Does it not seem to you like nothing in comparison?  4  ‘But now take courage, Zerubbabel,’ declares the LORD, ‘take courage also, Joshua son of Jehozadak, the high priest, and all you people of the land take courage,’ declares the LORD, ‘and work; for I am with you,’ says the LORD of hosts.  5  ‘As for the promise which I made you when you came out of Egypt, My Spirit is abiding in your midst; do not fear!’

B    6  “For thus says the LORD of hosts, ‘Once more in a little while, I am going to shake the heavens and the earth, the sea also and the dry land.  7  ‘And I will shake all the nations; and they will come with the wealth of all nations; and I will fill this house with glory,’ says the LORD of hosts.  8  ‘The silver is Mine, and the gold is Mine,’ declares the LORD of hosts.  9  ‘The latter glory of this house will be greater than the former,’ says the LORD of hosts, ‘and in this place I shall give peace,’ declares the LORD of hosts.”

C    1On the twenty-fourth of the ninth month, in the second year of Darius, the word of the LORD came to Haggai the prophet saying,  11  “Thus says the LORD of hosts, ‘Ask now the priests for a ruling:  12  ‘If a man carries holy meat in the fold of his garment, and touches bread with this fold, or cooked food, wine, oil, or any other food, will it become holy?'” And the priests answered and said, “No.”  13  Then Haggai said, “If one who is unclean from a corpse touches any of these, will the latter become unclean?” And the priests answered and said, “It will become unclean.”  14  Then Haggai answered and said, “‘So is this people. And so is this nation before Me,’ declares the LORD, ‘and so is every work of their hands; and what they offer there is unclean. 

D    15  ‘But now, do consider from this day onward:

E    before one stone was placed on another in the temple of the LORD,  16  from that time when one came to a grain heap of twenty measures, there would be only ten; and when one came to the wine vat to draw fifty measures, there would be only twenty.  17  ‘I smote you and every work of your hands with blasting wind, mildew, and hail; yet you did not come back to Me,’ declares the LORD.

D’   18  ‘Do consider from this day onward,

C’    from the twenty-fourth day of the ninth month; from the day when the temple of the LORD was founded, consider:  19  ‘Is the seed still in the barn? Even including the vine, the fig tree, the pomegranate, and the olive tree, it has not borne fruit. Yet from this day on I will bless you.'”

B’   20  the word of the LORD came a second time to Haggai on the twenty-fourth day of the month saying,  21  “Speak to Zerubbabel governor of Judah saying, ‘I am going to shake the heavens and the earth.  22  ‘And I will overthrow the thrones of kingdoms and destroy the power of the kingdoms of the nations; and I will overthrow the chariots and their riders, and the horses and their riders will go down, everyone by the sword of another.’

A’   23  ‘On that day,’ declares the LORD of hosts, ‘I will take you, Zerubbabel, son of Shealtiel, My servant,’ declares the LORD, ‘and I will make you like a signet ring, for I have chosen you,’” declares the LORD of hosts.

Paul Mosaic

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Here’s my chiasmus in brief:

A:

a:  Greetings

b:  Grace to you

B:

a:  Focus on the Philippians:  i: peace / ii: prayer

b:  Focus on Paul’s experience in prison

C:

a:  i: Stand firm! / ii: Enemies’ destruction

b:  Be united, work together!

D:

a:  “Have this attitude”

b:  Jesus as a good example

E:

a:  The bad: a crooked and perverse generation

b:  The good: the Philippians as ‘lights in the world, etc.’

F:  Rejoice!!!

G:  I’m sending Timothy

H:  Paul: I hope to see you shortly!

G’:  I sent Epaphroditus

F’:  Rejoice!!!

E’:

a’:  The bad: dogs, evil workers, false circumcision

b’:  The good: Philippians as ‘true circumcision, etc.’

D’:

b’:  Paul as a good example

a’:  “Have this attitude”

C’:

b’:  Be united, work together!

a’:  ii’: Enemies’ destruction / i’: Stand firm!

B’:

a’:  Focus on the Philippians:  ii’: prayer / i’ peace

b’:  Focus on Paul’s experience in prison

A’:

a’:  Greetings

b’:  Grace to you

Here’s the chiasmus in full:

A

a   1:1  Paul and Timothy, bond-servants of Christ Jesus, to all the saints in Christ Jesus who are in Philippi, including the overseers and deacons:

b   2  Grace to you

B

a    [Me: Focus on the Philippians:]

i

and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

ii    

a

i   3  I thank my God in all my remembrance of you,

ii   4  always offering prayer with joy in my every prayer for you all,

b    5  in view of your participation in the gospel from the first day until now.

c    6  For I am confident of this very thing,

d    that He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus.

d’    7  For it is only right for me to feel this way about you all,

c’    because I have you in my heart,

b    since both in my imprisonment and in the defense and confirmation of the gospel, you all are partakers of grace with me.

a’ 

i   8  For God is my witness, how I long for you all with the affection of Christ Jesus. 

ii   9  And this I pray: that your love may abound still more and more in real knowledge and all discernment,  10  so that you may approve the things that are excellent, in order to be sincere and blameless until the day of Christ;  11  having been filled with the fruit of righteousness which comes through Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God.

b   [Me: Focus on Paul’s experience in prison:]

12  Now I want you to know, brethren, that my circumstances have turned out for the greater progress of the gospel,  13  so that my imprisonment in the cause of Christ has become well known throughout the whole praetorian guard and to everyone else,  14  and that most of the brethren, trusting in the Lord because of my imprisonment, have far more courage to speak the word of God without fear.

a    15  Some, to be sure, are preaching Christ even from envy and strife,

b    but some also from good will;

b’    16  the latter do it out of love, knowing that I am appointed for the defense of the gospel;

a’    17  the former proclaim Christ out of selfish ambition rather than from pure motives, thinking to cause me distress in my imprisonment.

18  What then? Only that in every way, whether in pretense or in truth, Christ is proclaimed; and in this I rejoice. Yes, and I will rejoice,  19  for I know that this will turn out for my deliverance through your prayers and the provision of the Spirit of Jesus Christ,  20  according to my earnest expectation and hope, that I will not be put to shame in anything, but that with all boldness, Christ will even now, as always, be exalted in my body, whether by  i  life or by  ii  death.  21  For to me, to  i’  live is Christ and to  ii’  die is gain.  22  But if I am to live on in the flesh, this will mean fruitful labor for me; and I do not know which to choose.  23  But I am hard-pressed from both directions,  having the desire  ii”  to depart and be with Christ, for that is very much better;  24  i”  yet to remain on in the flesh is more necessary for your sake.  25  Convinced of this, I know that I will remain and continue with you all for your progress and joy in the faith,  26  so that your proud confidence in me may abound in Christ Jesus through my coming to you again.

C

a

i   27  Only conduct yourselves in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that whether I come and see you or remain absent, I will hear of you that you are standing firm in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel;

ii   28  in no way alarmed by your opponents – which is a sign of destruction for them, but of salvation for you, and that too, from God.  29  For to you it has been granted for Christ’s sake, not only to believe in Him, but also to suffer for His sake,  30  experiencing the same conflict which you saw in me, and now hear to be in me.

b   2:1  Therefore if there is any encouragement in Christ, if there is any consolation of love, if there is any fellowship of the Spirit, if any affection and compassion,  2  make my joy complete by being of the same mind, maintaining the same love, united in spirit, intent on one purpose.  3  Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves;  4  do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others.

D   [Me: the example of Jesus:]

a   5  Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus

b   6  who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped,  7  but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men.  8  Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.  9  For this reason also, God highly exalted Him, and bestowed on Him the name which is above every name,  10  so that at the name of Jesus every knee will bow, of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth,  11  and that every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.  12  So then, my beloved, just as you have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your salvation with fear and trembling;  13  for it is God who is at work in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure.

E’

a   14  Do all things without grumbling or disputing;  15  so that you will prove yourselves to be blameless and innocent, children of God above reproach in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation,

b   among whom you appear as lights in the world,  /  16  holding fast the word of life, so that in the day of Christ I will have reason to glory because I did not run in vain nor toil in vain.

F    17  But even if I am being poured out as a drink offering upon the sacrifice and service of your faith, I rejoice and share my joy with you all.  18  You too, I urge you, rejoice in the same way and share your joy with me. ***

G    19  But I hope in the Lord Jesus to send Timothy to you shortly, so that I also may be encouraged when I learn of your condition.  20  For I have no one else of kindred spirit who will genuinely be concerned for your welfare.  21  For they all seek after their own interests, not those of Christ Jesus.  22  But you know of his proven worth, that he served with me in the furtherance of the gospel like a child serving his father.  23  Therefore I hope to send him immediately, as soon as I see how things go with me;

H    24  and I trust in the Lord that I myself also will be coming shortly.

G’    25  But I thought it necessary to send to you Epaphroditus, my brother and fellow worker and fellow soldier, who is also your messenger and minister to my need;  26  because he was longing for you all and was distressed because you had heard that he was sick.  27  For indeed he was sick to the point of death, but God had mercy on him, and not on him only but also on me, so that I would not have sorrow upon sorrow.  28  Therefore I have sent him all the more eagerly so that when you see him again you may rejoice and I may be less concerned about you.  29  Receive him then in the Lord with all joy, and hold men like him in high regard;  30  because he came close to death for the work of Christ, risking his life to complete what was deficient in your service to me.

F’    3:1  Finally, my brethren, rejoice in the Lord. ***

E’

a’   To write the same things again is no trouble to me, and it is a safeguard for you:  2  Beware of the dogs, beware of the evil workers, beware of the false circumcision;

b’   3  for we are the true circumcision,  /  who worship in the Spirit of God  /  and glory in Christ Jesus  /  and put no confidence in the flesh.

D’   [Me: the example of Paul:]

b’   4  Although I myself might have confidence even in the flesh. If anyone else has a mind to put confidence in the flesh, I far more:  5  circumcised the eighth day, of the nation of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, a Hebrew of Hebrews; as to the Law, a Pharisee;  6  as to zeal, a persecutor of the church; as to the righteousness which is in the Law, found blameless.  7  But whatever things were gain to me, those things I have counted as loss for the sake of Christ.  8  More than that, I count all things to be loss in view of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them but rubbish so that I may gain Christ,  9  and may be found in Him, not having a righteousness of my own derived from the Law, but that which is through faith in Christ, the righteousness which comes from God on the basis of faith,  10  that I may know Him and the power of His resurrection and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death;  11  in order that I may attain to the resurrection from the dead.  12  Not that I have already obtained it or have already become perfect, but I press on so that I may lay hold of that for which also I was laid hold of by Christ Jesus.  13  Brethren, I do not regard myself as having laid hold of it yet; but one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead,  14  I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.

a’  15  Let us therefore, as many as are perfect, have this attitude; and if in anything you have a different attitude, God will reveal that also to you;  16  however, let us keep living by that same standard to which we have attained.  17  Brethren, join in following my example – and observe those who walk according to the pattern you have in us.

C’

a

ii’   18  For many walk, of whom I often told you, and now tell you even weeping, that they are enemies of the cross of Christ,  19  whose end is destruction, whose god is their appetite, and whose glory is in their shame, who set their minds on earthly things.

i’   20  For our citizenship is in heaven, from which also we eagerly wait for a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ;  21  who will transform the body of our humble state into conformity with the body of His glory, by the exertion of the power that He has even to subject all things to Himself.  4:1  Therefore, my beloved brethren whom I long to see, my joy and crown, in this way  i’  stand firm in the Lord, my beloved.

b   2  I urge Euodia and I urge Syntyche to live in harmony in the Lord.  3  Indeed, true companion, I ask you also to help these women who have shared my struggle in the cause of the gospel, together with Clement also and the rest of my fellow workers, whose names are in the book of life.   4  Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice!  5  Let your gentle spirit be known to all men. The Lord is near.

B’

a’   [Me: Focus on the Philippians]

ii’   6  Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.

i’   7  And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.  8  Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things.  9  The things you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you.

b’   [Focus on Paul’s experience in Prison:]

10  But I rejoiced in the Lord greatly, that now at last you have revived your concern for me; indeed, you were concerned before, but you lacked opportunity. 11  Not that I speak from want, for I have learned to be content in whatever circumstances I am.  12  I know how to get along with humble means, and I also know how to live in prosperity; in any and every circumstance I have learned the secret of being filled and going hungry, both of having abundance and suffering need.  13  I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.  14  Nevertheless, you have done well to share with me in my affliction.  15  You yourselves also know, Philippians, that at the first preaching of the gospel, after I left Macedonia, no church shared with me in the matter of giving and receiving but you alone;  16  for even in Thessalonica you sent a gift more than once for my needs.  17  Not that I seek the gift itself, but I seek for the profit which increases to your account.  18  But I have received everything in full and have an abundance; I am amply supplied, having received from Epaphroditus what you have sent, a fragrant aroma, an acceptable sacrifice, well-pleasing to God.  19  And my God will supply all your needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus.  20  Now to our God and Father be the glory forever and ever. Amen.

A’

a’   21  Greet every saint in Christ Jesus. The brethren who are with me greet you.  22  All the saints greet you, especially those of Caesar’s household.

b’   23  The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit.

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*** Was F/F’ the original center of Paul’s Philippians chiasmus (emphasizing the letter’s prominent theme of rejoicing)? Did Paul later add G, H, and G’?  …  Note 3:1b, which may have been Paul telling his readers that he was about to repeat the first half again (mind you, in reverse order): “To write the same things again is no trouble to me …”. It would also explain the use of the word “finally” in 3:1: “Finally, my brethren, rejoice in the Lord!” This statement would have been the final message in Paul’s original center of the chiasmus. It would have made for a fitting and strong center message, underlining the main theme of his letter to the Philippians. It would have also been a good way to climax and end his first half, before going on to his second half. (Hmmm.)

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Note: This chiasmus was updated May 31, 2020. For the sake of comments, F/F has now become D/D’.

Nebuchadnezzar

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24  Therefore, Daniel went in to Arioch, whom the king had appointed to destroy the wise men of Babylon; he went and spoke to him as follows: “… I will declare the interpretation to the king.”  25  Then Arioch hurriedly brought Daniel into the king’s presence and spoke to him as follows: “I have found a man among the  exiles from Judah who can make the interpretation known to the king!”

A    26  The king said to Daniel, whose name was Belteshazzar,  a  “Are you able to make known to me  a  the dream which I have seen,  b  and its interpretation?”

B    27  Daniel answered before the king and said, “As for the mystery about which the king has inquired, neither wise men, conjurers, magicians nor diviners are able to declare it to the king.

C    28  However, there is a God in heaven / who reveals mysteries, / and He has made known / to King Nebuchadnezzar

D    what will take place in the  latter days.

E    This was your dream and the visions in your mind / while on your bed.

F    29  As for you, O king,

E’    your thoughts / while on your bed 

D’    turned to what would take place in the future;

C’    and He / who reveals mysteries / has made known / to you what will take place.

B’    30  But as for me, this mystery has not been revealed to me for any wisdom residing in me more than in any other living man,

A’    but for the purpose of  b’  b’  a  making the interpretation to the king  a’  be knownb’  a’  b  and that the thoughts of your mind  a’  be known.

The King’s Dream

b’  31  “You, O king, were looking and behold, there was a single great statue; that statue, which was large and of extraordinary splendor, was standing in front of you, and its appearance was awesome.  32  The head of that statue was made of fine gold, its breast and its arms of silver, its belly and its thighs of bronze,  33  its legs of iron, its feet partly of iron and partly of clay.  34  You continued looking until a stone was cut out without hands, and it struck the statue on its feet of iron and clay and crushed them.  35  Then the iron, the clay, the bronze, the silver and the gold were crushed all at the same time and became like chaff from the summer threshing floors; and the wind carried them away so that not a trace of them was found. But the stone that struck the statue became a great mountain and filled the whole earth.

The Interpretation

Babylon: 

a’  36  “This was the dream; now we will tell its interpretation before the king.  37  You, O king, are the king of kings, to whom the God of heaven has given the kingdom, the power, the strength and the glory;  38  and wherever the sons of men dwell, or the beasts of the field, or the birds of the sky, He has given them into your hand and has caused you to rule over them all. You are the head of gold.

Medo-Persia and Greece:

39  After you there will arise another kingdom inferior to you, then another third kingdom of bronze, which will rule over all the earth.

Rome:

40  Then there will be a fourth kingdom as strong as iron; inasmuch as iron crushes and shatters all things, so, like iron that breaks in pieces, it will crush and break all these in pieces.  41  In that you saw the feet and toes, partly of potter’s clay and partly of iron, it will be a divided kingdom; but it will have in it the toughness of iron, inasmuch as you saw the iron mixed with common clay.  42  As the toes of the feet were partly of iron and partly of pottery, so some of the kingdom will be strong and part of it will be brittle.  43  And in that you saw the iron mixed with common clay, they will combine with one another in the seed of men; but they will not adhere to one another, even as iron does not combine with pottery.

The Divine Kingdom:

44  In the days of those kings the God of heaven will set up a kingdom which will never be destroyed, and that kingdom will not be left for another people; it will crush and put an end to all these kingdoms, but it will itself endure forever.  45  Inasmuch as you saw that a stone was cut out of the mountain without hands and that it crushed the iron, the bronze, the clay, the silver and the gold, the great God has made known to the king what will take place in the future; so the dream is true and its interpretation is trustworthy.”
Daniel Promoted

Book of 2 Chronicles

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This chiasmus is pretty straight forward.  I like how there’s a shift at the center – from seeking Baals (F, G) to seeking God (G’, F’).  As a result, the Lord establishes Jehoshaphat’s kingdom (C’ to A’).  …  Nice.

For those interested, here’s a short biography of Jehoshaphat’s life:  Click.

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A    Jehoshaphat his son then became king in his place – and made his position over Israel firm.

B    2  He placed troops in all the fortified cities of Judah, and set garrisons in the land of Judah, and in the cities of Ephraim which Asa his father had captured.

C    3  And the LORD  /  was with Jehoshaphat

D    because he walked

E    in the ways of his father David’s earlier days

F    and did not seek

G    the Baals,

G’   4  but God of his father,

F’   he sought

E’   In His commandments

D’   he walked – and did not act as Israel did.

C’   5  So the LORD  /  established the kingdom in his control,

B’   and all Judah brought tribute

A’   to Jehoshaphat and he had great riches and honor.

Jesus and Pharisees

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In Matthew 23:13-33 Jesus delivers 7 ‘woes’ to the scribes and Pharisees.  My Bible (NASB) refers to 8 woes in its sub-title, but the woe in v. 14 is absent in the earliest manuscripts.  7 woes makes good sense.  7 is a symbol of fullness, or completeness.  Matthew would like his readers to see these woes as full, complete, and impact-full.  These woes then lead into Matthew 24, where Jesus teaches about the coming destruction of Jerusalem (70 A.D.).

A    The first 2 woes involve other people (people are kept from entering the kingdom of God; a proselyte is turned into a ‘son of hell’), and end with a reference to Gehenna (~hell).

B    The middle 3 woes call the scribes and Pharisees “blind guides” (2 times), “blind men” (2 times), and “blind” (once), and are highly chiastic.

A’   The last 2 woes refer to “tombs”, and end with a reference to Gehenna (~hell).

The third woe (vs 16-22) contains 3 chiasmi.  It’s the only ‘woe’ which begins with “Woe to you, blind guides …” rather than “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites …”.  It’s a nice chiasmus.  Its basic outline is:  temple … altar … altar … temple (A B B’ A’).  It contains 2 ‘smaller’ chiasmi within it – in A and B.  I like the way the end builds from altar (B’) to temple (A’) to heaven (C).  This ‘building’ at the end should be contrasted to the ‘diminishing’ of similar terms in the explanatory passage, Matthew 5:33-37:

33  “Again, you have heard that the ancients were told, ‘YOU SHALL NOT MAKE FALSE VOWSBUT SHALL FULFILL YOUR VOWS TO THE LORD.’  34  But I say to you, make no oath at all, either by heaven, for it is the throne of God,  35  or by the earth, for it is the footstool of His feet, or by Jerusalem, for it is THE CITY OF THE GREAT KING.  36  Nor shall you make an oath by your head, for you cannot make one hair white or black.  37  But let your statement be, ‘Yes, yes’ or ‘No, no’; anything beyond these is of evil.

Combining 5:33-37 with 23:20-22 you get a list that diminishes and then expands, with ‘heaven’ forming an inclusion (bookends):  (diminishing:) heaven, earth, Jerusalem, ‘your head’ … (expanding:) altar, temple, heaven.  Combined you get a lengthy list of things a person should not swear by.  It is better to simply have your yes mean yes, and your no mean no (5:37).   Jesus’ simplifies the topic.

To understand Jesus’ reference to the scribes and Pharisees as “blind guides”, see Matthew 15:14:  “Let them alone; they are blind guides of the blind. And if a blind man guides a blind man, both will fall into a pit.”  The references to blindness in the 3rd to 5th woes fittingly follow the first two woes, which refer to potential followers of the scribes and Pharisees.  It’s fitting that the last 2 woes refer to tombs.  Tombs refer to ‘the end’ (at least our end ;-), and in this case, ominously lead into Jesus’ prophecies concerning the destruction of Jerusalem and the temple.

Here are the 7 woes, with 6 chiasmi:

__________

13  “But woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites, because you shut off the kingdom of heaven from people; for you do not enter in yourselves, nor do you allow those who are entering to go in.   

[Verse 14 deleted]

15  “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites, because you travel around on sea and land to make one proselyte; and when he becomes one, you make him twice as much a son of hell as yourselves.

16  “Woe to you, blind guides, who say,

A

a    ‘Whoever swears by the templethat is nothing;

b    but whoever swears by the gold of the temple is obligated.’ 

c    17  You fools and blind men!  Which is more important?

b’    the gold

a’    or the temple that sanctified the gold? 

B

a    18  And, ‘Whoever swears by the altarthat is nothing,

b    but whoever swears by the offering on it, he is obligated.’ 

c   19  You blind men!  Which is more important?

b’    The offering,

a’    or the altar that sanctifies the offering? 

—–

B’    20  Therefore, whoever swears by the altar, swears both by the altar and by everything on it. 

A’   21  And whoever swears by the temple, swears both by the temple and by Him who dwells within it. 

C    22  And whoever swears by heaven, swears both by the throne of God and by Him who sits upon it.

23  “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites!  

A    For you tithe mint and dill and cummin,

B    and have neglected the weightier provisions of the law: justice and mercy and faithfulness

B’    but these are the things you should have done

A’    without neglecting the others

24  You blind guides,

A    who strain out

B    a gnat

B’    and a camel

A’    swallow!

25  “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites!

A    For you clean the outside of the cup and of the dish,

B    but inside they are full of robbery and self-indulgence. 

  26  You blind Pharisee,

B’    first clean the inside of the cup and of the dish,

A’    so that the outside of it may become clean also.

27  “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you are like whitewashed tombs which on the outside appear beautiful, but inside they are full of dead men’s bones and all uncleanness.  28  So you, too, outwardly appear righteous to men, but inwardly you are full of hypocrisy and lawlessness.

29  “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you build the tombs of the prophets and adorn the monuments of the righteous,  30  and say, ‘If we had been living in the days of our fathers, we would not have been partners with them in shedding the blood of the prophets.’  31  So you testify against yourselves, that you are sons of those who murdered the prophets.  32  Fill up, then, the measure of the guilt of your fathers.  33  You serpents, you brood of vipers, how will you escape the sentence of hell?

34  “Therefore, behold, I am sending you prophets and wise men and scribes; some of them you will kill and crucify, and some of them you will scourge in your synagogues, and persecute from city to city,  35  so that upon you may fall the guilt of all the righteous blood shed on earth, from the blood of righteous Abel to the blood of Zechariah, the son of Berechiah, whom you murdered between the temple and the altar.  36  Truly I say to you, all these things will come upon this generation.”

37  “Jerusalem, Jerusalem, who kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to her! How often I wanted to gather your children together, the way a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, and you were unwilling.  38  Behold, your house is being left to you desolate! 

39  “For I say to you, from now on you will not see Me until you say, ‘BLESSED IS HE WHO COMES IN THE NAME OF THE LORD!’”

24:1  Jesus came out from the temple and was going away when His disciples came up to point out the temple buildings to Him.  2  And He said to them, “Do you not see all these things? Truly I say to you, not one stone here will be left upon another, which will not be torn down.” …  …  …

 

Chiastic Pic

St Pauls Cathedral

St. Paul’s Cathedral – Dome

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“Photographer Peter Li uses panoramic photography to introduce a new perspective to the already breathtaking architecture of churches from around the world. By capturing the entirety of the ceiling and supporting columns, Li allows the viewer to get the chance to feel what it is like to stand at the center of these grand buildings, while also achieving a viewpoint that is impossible to get without digital intervention.”

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More of Peter Li’s work can be found here.

 

destruction

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Revelation 14:6-11:

6  And I saw another angel flying in mid-heaven, having an eternal gospel to preach to those who live on the earth, and to every nation and tribe and tongue and people;  7  and he said with a loud voice, “Fear God, and give Him glory, because the hour of His judgment has come; worship Him who made the heaven and the earth and sea and springs of waters.”  8  And another angel, a second one, followed, saying, “Fallen, fallen is Babylon the great, she who has made all the nations drink of the wine of the passion of her immorality.”

9  Then another angel, a third one, followed them, saying with a loud voice,

A    “If anyone worships the beast and his image, and receives a mark on his forehead or on his hand

B    10  he also will drink of the wine of the wrath of God,  which is mixed in full strength in the cup  of His anger;

C    and he will be tormented

D   with fire and brimstone

E    in the presence of the holy angels

E’    and in the presence of the Lamb.

D’    11  And the smoke    [Comment by me: the smoke comes from the fire and brimstone]

C’    of their torment goes up forever and ever;  

B’    they have no rest day and night   [Comment by me: the punishment/torment is full strength: i.e., there are no breaks; it continues both day and night],

A’    those who worship the beast and his image, and whoever receives the mark of his name.” 

__________

Some think this passage is speaking of hell, and that hell is a place of eternal conscious torment:  “And the smoke of their torment goes up forever and ever; they have no rest day and night.”  In fact, this passage is often taken as one of the strongest proof texts for eternal conscious torment in hell.

But, in my opinion, these verses shouldn’t be understood that way.  The image of smoke going up ‘forever and ever’ is simply an idiom for total destruction.  Ironically, it speaks of ‘finality’ rather than ‘eternity’.  You can see this by looking at Isaiah 34:8-10 where it refers to the total destruction of the land of Edom:

8  For the LORD has a day of vengeance, a year of recompense for the cause of Zion.  9  Its streams will be turned into pitch, and its loose earth into brimstone, and its land will become burning pitch.  10  It will not be quenched night or day; its smoke will go up forever.  From generation to generation it will be desolate; none will pass through it forever and ever.

Edom was completely destroyed.  There may have been fire and smoke involved in its destruction, but the actual smoke of that destruction did not go up ‘forever and ever’.  It would have only lasted a short time – maybe days, weeks, or months.  What the phrase does point to is finality.  The language is hyperbolic, pointing to a destruction that will be eternal – a destruction that will last forever.  …  Edom was completely destroyed and, for all of eternity, it would never rise again.  It is gone.  

The image of smoke rising forever is also used in Revelation 19:3.  In the chiasmus above, we have a stylized, chiastic description of the destruction of Babylon.  In Revelation 18:1-19:6 we have a more detailed, straight forward description of the destruction of Babylon.  Note that both of the Revelation passages we’re looking at begin with the phrase, “Fallen, fallen is Babylon the great” (14:8, 18:2).  Both passages are speaking of the same event, the destruction of Babylon.

Here’s a few excerpts from the less stylized and more descriptive passage, Revelation 18:1-19:3:

2  And he cried out with a mighty voice, saying, ‘Fallen, fallen is Babylon the great …’.  …  To the degree that she glorified herself and lived sensuously, to the same degree give her torment and mourning; for she says in her heart, ‘I SIT as A QUEEN AND I AM NOT A WIDOW, and will never see mourning.’  8  For this reason in one day her plagues will come, pestilence and mourning and famine, and she will be burned up with fire; for the Lord God who judges her is strong.  9  “And the kings of the earth, who committed acts of immorality and lived sensuously with her, will weep and lament over her when they see the smoke of her burning,  10  standing at a distance because of the fear of her torment, saying, ‘Woe, woe, the great city, Babylon, the strong city! For in one hour your judgment has come.’  …  15  The merchants of these things, who became rich from her, will stand at a distance because of the fear of her torment, weeping and mourning,  16  saying, ‘Woe, woe, the great city, she who was clothed in fine linen and purple and scarlet, and adorned with gold and precious stones and pearls;  17  for in one hour such great wealth has been laid waste!’ And every ship-master and every passenger and sailor, and as many as make their living by the sea, stood at a distance,  18  and were crying out as they saw the smoke of her burning, saying, ‘What city is like the great city?’  19  And they threw dust on their heads and were crying out, weeping and mourning, saying, ‘Woe, woe, the great city …’.  …  21  Then a strong angel took up a stone like a great millstone and threw it into the sea, saying, “So will Babylon, the great city, be thrown down with violence, and will not be found any longer.  22  And the sound of harpists and musicians and flute-players and trumpeters will not be heard in you any longer; and no craftsman of any craft will be found in you any longer; and the sound of a mill will not be heard in you any longer;  23  and the light of a lamp will not shine in you any longer; and the voice of the bridegroom and bride will not be heard in you any longer  …  19:1  After these things I heard something like a loud voice of a great multitude in heaven, saying, “Hallelujah! Salvation and glory and power belong to our God;  2  BECAUSE HIS JUDGMENTS ARE TRUE AND RIGHTEOUS; for He has judged the great harlot who was corrupting the earth with her immorality, and HE HAS AVENGED THE BLOOD OF HIS BOND-SERVANTS ON HER.”  3  And a second time they said, “Hallelujah! HER SMOKE RISES UP FOREVER AND EVER.”  …  6  Then I heard something like the voice of a great multitude and like the sound of many waters and like the sound of mighty peals of thunder, saying, “Hallelujah! For the Lord our God, the Almighty, reigns.

Note the presence of fire, smoke, and torment in the above description of the destruction of Babylon.  Towards the end, the writer once again uses the phrase “Her smoke rises up forever and ever.”  In this passage, Babylon is completely destroyed, just as Edom was completely destroyed in Isaiah.  The language of ‘smoke rising forever’, or even ‘smoke of their torment rising forever’ is simply hyperbolic language referring to the completeness, or finality, of Babylon’s destruction (note the use of ‘torment’ in both Revelation passages).  Babylon is finished.  It will be no more.  It will not be found.  It will be like a great millstone thrown into the sea.

Rather than eternity, the idiom of ‘smoke rising forever’ actually speaks of complete destruction.  Finality.

 

 

Jude

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A number of chiasmi have been suggested for the epistle of Jude – many of which can be found on the net.

Following is my attempt.

Here’s the breakdown:

A/A’:  Jude’s intro and benediction.

B/C/DD’C’B’:  Words of blessing and encouragement regarding ‘mercy, love, faith … faith, love, mercy’.  (Note the chiastic reversal of the word order.  This is a nice, clear beginning/end clue that the entire book of Jude may have been written as a chiasmus.  When you see something like this, the possibility of an overall chiasmus is worth checking out.)

E/E’:  The overall problem is introduced.  E:  Ungodly persons have crept in “who turn the grace of our God into licentiousness and deny our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ”.  E’:  This shouldn’t come as a surprise, as it was spoken of previously by the apostles: “In the last time there will be mockers, following after their own ungodly lusts”.

F/F’This is Jude’s ‘main body’!  It addresses the problem directly.  It gives examples of disobedience and promises judgment.

F and F’ have 2 parts each:  F (1 and 2) … F’ (1 and 2).  And each of the 1 and 2 parts can be divided into an additional 2 parts (a and b):  F1 (a and b), F2 (a and b);  F’1 (a and b), F’2 (a and b).

Note:  this a/b pattern is continued in E’.

I hope that’s not too difficult to follow.  Anyway, continuing …

Both F1a and F’1a give 3 Old Testament examples of misbehavior and/or error.

Both F2a and F’2a refer to extra-Biblical pseudepigraphical texts (Assumption of Moses, Book of Enoch, respectively).  F2a mentions Michael the archangel.  F’2a refers to the Lord coming with “many thousands of His holy ones (angels)”, with presumably, though not stated specifically, Michael at the lead (see 1 Thess. 4:16).

The final a section in F’ gives the strongest warning.  Jesus will return with many angels and execute judgment!

Note how all the b sections in F through E’ use the word ‘these’ to refer to those in the church who are causing problems.  It’s interesting to read all these b sections in order.  It gives a nice description of the trouble makers.

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A   1  Jude, a bond-servant of Jesus Christ, and brother of James, to those who are the called, beloved in God the Father, and kept for Jesus Christ:  

B   2  May mercy

C   and peace and love be multiplied to you.  

D   3  Beloved, while I was making every effort to write you about our common salvation, I felt the necessity to write to you appealing that you contend earnestly for the faith which was once for all handed down to the saints.  

E   4  For certain persons have crept in unnoticed, those who were long beforehand marked out for this condemnation, ungodly persons who turn the grace of our God into licentiousness and deny our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ.  

F

1

a   5  Now I desire to remind you, though you know all things once for all, that the Lord, after saving a people out of the land of Egypt, subsequently destroyed those who did not believe.  6  And angels who did not keep their own domain, but abandoned their proper abode, He has kept in eternal bonds under darkness for the judgment of the great day,  7  just as Sodom and Gomorrah and the cities around them, since they in the same way as these indulged in gross immorality and went after strange flesh, are exhibited as an example in undergoing the punishment of eternal fire.  

b   8  Yet in the same way these men, also by dreaming, defile the flesh, and reject authority, and revile angelic majesties.  

2

a   9  But Michael the archangel, when he disputed with the devil and argued about the body of Moses, did not dare pronounce against him a railing judgment, but said, “The Lord rebuke you!”  

b   10  But these men revile the things which they do not understand; and the things which they know by instinct, like unreasoning animals, by these things they are destroyed.  

F’

1

a   11  Woe to them! For they have gone the way of Cain, and for pay they have rushed headlong into the error of Balaam, and perished in the rebellion of Korah.  

b   12  These are the men who are hidden reefs in your love feasts when they feast with you without fear, caring for themselves; clouds without water, carried along by winds; autumn trees without fruit, doubly dead, uprooted;  13  wild waves of the sea, casting up their own shame like foam; wandering stars, for whom the black darkness has been reserved forever.  

2

a   14  It was also about these men that Enoch, in the seventh generation from Adam, prophesied, saying, “Behold, the Lord came with many thousands of His holy ones,  15  to execute judgment upon all, and to convict all the ungodly of all their ungodly deeds which they have done in an ungodly way, and of all the harsh things which ungodly sinners have spoken against Him.”  

b   16  These are grumblers, finding fault, following after their own lusts; they speak arrogantly, flattering people for the sake of gaining an advantage.  

E’

a   17  But you, beloved, ought to remember the words that were spoken beforehand by the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ,  18  that they were saying to you, “In the last time there will be mockers, following after their own ungodly lusts.”  

b   19  These are the ones who cause divisions, worldly-minded, devoid of the Spirit.  

D’   20  But you, beloved, building yourselves up on your most holy faith

C’   praying in the Holy Spirit,  21  keep yourselves in the love of God, 

B’   waiting anxiously for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ to eternal life.  22  And have mercy on some, who are doubting;  23  save others, snatching them out of the fire; and on some have mercy with fear, hating even the garment polluted by the flesh.

A’   24  Now to Him who is able to keep you from stumbling, and to make you stand in the presence of His glory blameless with great joy,  25  to the only God our Savior, through Jesus Christ our Lord, be glory, majesty, dominion and authority, before all time and now and forever. Amen.

the-fork-in-the-road_0

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From here, “The Story of Israel: A Biblical Theology”, by J. Scott Duvall, p 47 (but ultimately credited to Duane Christensen, Deuteronomy 21:10-34:12, Word Biblical Commentary 6B, page 680).

Here’s a quote from Scott:

… Just as obedience to Yahweh results in specific blessings, so too does disobedience yield specific curses.  There are numerous curses presented throughout the book of Deuteronomy.  Many of these curses fall under the ominous curse of Israel being defeated by her enemies and her subsequent exile into foreign lands.  Just as the blessings served to create a future for Israel, the curses threatened to dismantle all that could have been Israel’s.

In the structure of the book the curses also surround the Deuteronomic law code …

Curses – Deuteronomy 1-11 (4:9-28; 8:11-20; 11:16-17)

Deuteronomic Law Code – Deuteronomy 12-26

Curses – Deuteronomy 27-34 (27:15-26; 28:15-68; 31:16-32:51)

Duane Christensen has suggested that a chiasm appears in Deuteronomy 28, which serves to emphasize the totality of these curses in the demise of the nation of Israel.  The central point in the chiasm reverses the blessings promised earlier in Deuteronomy 28:4, 8, 11:

A  Triad of afflictions: curse, confusion, and cumbrance (Deut 28:20-22)

B  Agricultural Disaster (drought and hardening soil) (Deut 28:23-24)

C  War:  Defeat leading to Israel becoming an object lesson (Deut 28:25-26)

D  Boils of Egypt sent from Yahweh (Deut 28:27)

E  Madness and blindness (Deut 28:28-29a)

F  Oppressed and robbed all the days (Deut 28:29b)

Undoing of the blessings in 28:4, 8, 11 (Deut 28:30-31)

F’  Oppressed and crushed all the days (Deut 28:32-33)

E’  Madness from what one sees (Deut 28:34)

D’  Boils sent from Yahweh (Deut 28:35)

C’  War:  exile leading to Israel becoming an object lesson (Deut 28:36-37)

B’  Agricultural disaster (crop-destroying pests) (Deut 28:38-42)

A’  Economic collapse – impoverishment and debt (Deut 28:43-44)

_____

I’ve changed the center a little bit.  His F  X  F’ is now F  G (1,2)  G’ (1,2)  F.  Basically,  I’ve created a G’ (1,2) section out of the first part of his F’ section.  I’ve also added verses 45-48 to A’.  In my opinion, verses 15-19 could also have been added to A.

_____

15  “But it shall come about, if you do not obey the Lord your God, to observe to do all His commandments and His statutes with which I charge you today, that all these curses will come upon you and overtake you:  16  “Cursed shall you be in the city, and cursed shall you be in the country.  17  “Cursed shall be your basket and your kneading bowl.  18  “Cursed shall be the offspring of your body and the produce of your ground, the increase of your herd and the young of your flock.  19  “Cursed shall you be when you come in, and cursed shall you be when you go out. 

A    [Me: disobedience, destruction:]  20  “The Lord will send upon you curses, confusion, and rebuke, in all you undertake to do, until you are destroyed and until you perish quickly, on account of the evil of your deeds, because you have forsaken Me21  The Lord will make the pestilence cling to you until He has consumed you from the land where you are entering to possess it.  22  The Lord will smite you with consumption and with fever and with inflammation and with fiery heat and with the sword and with blight and with mildew, and they will pursue you until you perish

B    [Me: agricultural disaster – the cause:]  23  The heaven which is over your head shall be bronze, and the earth which is under you, iron.  24  The Lord will make the rain of your land powder and dust; from heaven it shall come down on you until you are destroyed

C    [Me: War – the act itself:]  25  “The Lord shall cause you to be defeated before your enemies; you will go out one way against them, but you will flee seven ways before them, and you will be an example of terror to all the kingdoms of the earth.  26  Your carcasses will be food to all birds of the sky and to the beasts of the earth, and there will be no one to frighten them away. 

D    27  “The Lord will smite you with the boils of Egypt and with tumors and with the scab and with the itch, from which you cannot be healed

E    28  The Lord will smite you with madness and with blindness and with bewilderment of heart;  29  and you will grope at noon, as the blind man gropes in darkness,

F    and you will not prosper in your ways; but you shall only be oppressed and robbed  /  continually, with none to save you. 

G   

1    [Me: family:]  30  You shall betroth a wife, but another man will violate her; you shall build a house, but you will not live in it;

2    [Me: land and possessions:]  you shall plant a vineyard, but you will not use its fruit31  Your ox shall be slaughtered before your eyes, but you will not eat of it; your donkey shall be torn away from you, and will not be restored to you; your sheep shall be given to your enemies, and you will have none to save you. 

G’  

1′   [Me: family]  32  Your sons and your daughters shall be given to another people, while your eyes look on and yearn for them continually; but there will be nothing you can do. 

2′   [Me: refers to land and possessions:]  33  A people whom you do not know shall eat up the produce of your ground and all your labors,

F’   and you will never be anything but oppressed and crushed  /  continually

E’   34  You shall be driven mad  /  by the sight of what you see

D’   35  The Lord will strike you on the knees and legs with sore boils,  /  from which you cannot be healed, from the sole of your foot to the crown of your head. 

C’   [Me: war – the aftermath:]  36  The Lord will bring you and your king, whom you set over you, to a nation which neither you nor your fathers have known, and there you shall serve other gods, wood and stone.  37  You shall become a horror, a proverb, and a taunt among all the people where the Lord drives you. 

B’   [Me: agricultural disaster – the result:]  38  “You shall bring out much seed to the field but you will gather in little, for the locust will consume it.  39  You shall plant and cultivate vineyards, but you will neither drink of the wine nor gather the grapes, for the worm will devour them.  40  You shall have olive trees throughout your territory but you will not anoint yourself with the oil, for your olives will drop off.  41  You shall have sons and daughters but they will not be yours, for they will go into captivity.  42  The cricket shall possess all your trees and the produce of your ground

A’   [Me: disobedience, destruction:]  43  The alien who is among you shall rise above you higher and higher, but you will go down lower and lower.  44  He shall lend to you, but you will not lend to him; he shall be the head, and you will be the tail.  45  “So all these curses shall come on you and pursue you and overtake you until you are destroyed, because you would not obey the Lord your God by keeping His commandments and His statutes which He commanded you.  46  They shall become a sign and a wonder on you and your descendants forever.  47  “Because you did not serve the Lord your God with joy and a glad heart, for the abundance of all things;  48  therefore you shall serve your enemies whom the Lord will send against you, in hunger, in thirst, in nakedness, and in the lack of all things; and He will put an iron yoke on your neck until He has destroyed you.

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DCF 1.0

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This chiasmus is part of a larger chiasmus (Revelation 1:4 – 3:22) that can be found here.

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The chiasmus below can be briefly outlined as follows:

A    God, the Father

B/C    Jesus

D/E/E’F’    The Church

C’/B’   Jesus

A’   God, the Father

The chiasmus can be read helically.  That is, it can be read in the order of it’s matches:  from A to A’, to B to B’, to C to C’, to D, E, E’, F’.  In my opinion, the passage actually becomes clearer when read this way:

(A)  “Grace to you and peace, from Him who is and who was and who is to come – and from the seven Spirits who are before His throne.  (A’)  “I am the Alpha and the Omega,” says the Lord God, “who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.”  (B)  And from Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the firstborn of the dead, and the ruler of the kings of the earth.  (B’)  Behold, He is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see Him, even those who pierced Him; and all the tribes of the earth will mourn over Him. So it is to be. Amen.  (C)  To Him who loves us and released us from our sins by His blood;  (C’)  to Him be the glory and the dominion forever and ever. Amen.  (D/E/E’/D’)  He has made us to be a kingdom; priests to His God and Father.”

(For another example of a passage that can be read helically, see Psalm 150.)

I think the center of this chiasmus is strong, focusing on the church as a kingdom of priests.  The center offers a little ‘high churchology’, if you will.  😉

The beginning and end have a match in God, the Father.  ‘God’ surrounds and centers the chiasmus – and more importantly, it’s message.

The reference to God as “Alpha and Omega” is interesting.  Alpha is the first letter in the Greek alphabet, while Omega is the last.  The phrase’s meaning is that God is the first and the last, the beginning and the end.  In other words, He is the source of everything that is.  …  For me, it’s interesting as well because the chiasmus itself begins and ends with ‘God, the Father’.  It makes me wonder whether the writer is winking at us with this little phrase – perhaps with a small smile of creative satisfaction. ;-).

I like the way the second half ends each section with strength:  C’:  “Amen”; B’:  “Amen”; A’:  “The Almighty”.

Overall, I think this is a nice little chiasmus.  I like the beautiful, strong message in the center.  We are a kingdom … a kingdom of priests.  Wow!  Nice.

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4  John to the seven churches that are in Asia:

A    [Me:  God, the Father:]  Grace to you and peace, from Him  /  who is and who was and who is to comeand from the seven Spirits who are before His throne

B    [Me:  Jesus:]  5  and from Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the firstborn of the dead, and the ruler of the kings of the earth

C    [Me: Praise for Jesus (doxology – part a):]  To Him who loves us and released us from our sins by His blood – 

D    (6  and He has made us to be

E    a kingdom,

E’   priests

D’   to His God and Father –)

C’   [Me: Praise for Jesus (doxology – part b):]  to Him be the glory and the dominion forever and ever. Amen. 

B’  [Me:  Jesus:]  7  Behold, He is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see Him, even those who pierced Him; and all the tribes of the earth will mourn over Him. So it is to be. Amen. 

A’  [Me:  God, the Father:]  8  “I am the Alpha and the Omega,” says the Lord God,  /  who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.”

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