Monday, 15 February 2010

Pleasures now, or to come?

One of the big charges leveled at us charismatics is that we have an "over-realised eschatology". That is, that we claim blessings now that are only promised for the age to come.

I'm sure the "Prosperity Gospel" (which really is "another gospel" and no gospel at all) has had something to do with that reaction. However, none of the "reformed charismatics" that I've been learning from (see the Blogroll) could be accused of being for the "Prosperity Gospel". Indeed, quite the reverse!

"I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full" -- John 10:10 (ESV)

Actually, I've always been taught that this "life to the full" begins now. But I guess that's ok as long as it doesn't include the seeking of pleasure? However, Christian Hedonism states that seeking pleasure in God (now) brings Him the most glory.

In my previous post I included a quote from Psalm 16:11. I was interested (and a little alarmed) to see that the NIV gives the impression of a future only fulfilment, whereas other translations seem to imply pleasures now and forevermore:

"You have made known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand." (NIV)

"You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore." (ESV)

"You will make known to me the path of life; In Your presence is fullness of joy; In Your right hand there are pleasures forever." (NASB)

"Thou wilt shew me the path of life: in thy presence is fulness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore." (KJV)

To my inexpert eyes it appears that the various tranlations use the following tenses:

NIV: "past; future; future >> eternity"
ESV: "present; present; present >> eternity"
NAS: "future; present; present >> eternity"
KJV: "future; present; present >> eternity"

Is the NIV's future bias significant?

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