Is Revelation a Pseudepigraphic Text?

It’s an interesting question, posed by James McGrath.

Has anyone explored the possibility that Revelation is not an exception [to the pseudepigraphal rule]? It certainly is the case that Revelation does not claim to be written by someone in the distant past, as was true of most Jewish apocalypses. But for the purported author to be a Christian, it would have had to be someone from the recent past. And so perhaps it is worth exploring the possibility that this is an early Christian pseudepigraphal work, an apocalypse in the name of an apostle of the sort that Christians would continue to produce in the centuries that followed.

Interesting, right?  Yet it seems that James is blurring the line between ‘apocalyptic’ literature and ‘pseudepigraphal’ literature.   These two genres share some characteristics but are distinct enough so as not to be confused with one another.   That later Christians do in fact blend them (think of the ‘Apocalypse of Peter’, for only one example) and it seems a certainty that even early Christians blurred the lines too.

So James’ question deserves, I think, some consideration.

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