Q. It seems to me a more balanced approach than we find in the apocalyptic readers of Paul to say that there is both a historical sequence of events which Christ comes and is the fulfillment of, and there is also surprising moments of divine incursion as well in that overall narrative. It’s not just one or the other. God does come to the rescue at points interrupting a bad scenario for God’s people, but this is part of the larger story of God and his people. Would you agree with that sort of formulation?
A. Yes, absolutely. But the notion of ‘the coming of God’ is not well grasped in modern western Christianity which thinks instead of ‘how humans find their way to God whereas the Biblical narrative ends up with ‘the dwelling of God is with humans’ (Rev 21). Even if people give lip service to that they regularly flick back into default mode as soon as they stop concentrating, and then the questions like ‘apocalyptic VERSUS salvation history’ etc come up and mess everything around . . .