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Reading the Book of Revelation: Five Principles for Interpretation

ISBN: 9781683595557
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How to read Revelation rightly

Let’s face it: the book of Revelation is difficult to read! Many neglect it, leaving it to the experts or the obsessed. Others fixate on the details, focusing on current events but missing Christ in the process. But Revelation promises a blessing on all who read it. Why is it so hard to understand?

In Reading the Book of Revelation, Alexander E. Stewart offers five simple keys that unlock this difficult book. He then illustrates their profit in explaining Revelation chapter by chapter and provides recommendations for further study. With this short and accessible guide, readers will see how Revelation is approachable, applicable to their lives, and glorifying to Christ.

Praise for Reading the Book of Revelation

Stewart illuminates Revelation’s main themes demonstrating that John’s intention is to motivate his readers to overcome. This book will help you see that Revelation is not primarily about the future, but about how the future makes a difference for us today.

—Benjamin L. Merkle, Professor of New Testament and Greek Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary, Wake Forest, NC

Stewart’s Reading the Book of Revelation is a must read for anyone just getting started in their studying of the book of Revelation.

—Rob Dalrymple, author of Follow the Lamb: A Guide to Reading, Understanding, and Applying the book of Revelation

Explaining the Book of Revelation in a clear and concise manner is a daunting task, yet Alexander Stewart excels without sacrificing or trivializing Revelation's foundational theology and message.

—Brandon D. Smith, Assistant Professor of Theology & New Testament, Cedarville University

Fanciful and farfetched interpretations of the Book of Revelation are unfortunately wide-spread and easily accessible. In this book, however, Stewart provides a clear set of principles to guide readers toward a responsible interpretation of Revelation and then demonstrates these through a reading of Revelation that is both consistent in its methodology and charitable toward other major interpretations of the book.

—Dr. Michael Naylor, Associate Professor of New Testament, Columbia International University

Top Highlights

“John’s primary goal, in the language of Revelation, is to motivate his hearers to overcome. Every part of the book is designed to transform his hearers into overcomers. For some of his hearers, this encouragement to overcome reinforces their present convictions and conduct, while for others, the encouragement to overcome calls for dramatic changes to their beliefs and actions. For every hearer, John presents overcoming as necessary to participate in God’s new creation. One keeps the words of the book of Revelation by overcoming.” (Page 13)

“The book’s primary goal is to motivate hearers to overcome. We overcome through genuine repentance, perseverance, obedience, witness, and worship.” (Page 15)

“These two extremes are common: ignore Revelation or obsess over it.” (Page 2)

“The book of Revelation is designed to motivate its hearers to reject compromise and assimilation and embrace sacrificial discipleship. It thus has a powerful message for our current generation, just as it had a powerful message to its original hearers. Christians must overcome; there is no other option.” (Pages 12–13)

“With all the other things we will discuss about Revelation in this book, do not let this first principle slip from your mind. Always prioritize the original purpose of the visions. We must overcome, and each of the visions is designed to motivate us to do so.” (Page 16)

  • Finding a Way through the Maze
  • Part 1: Five Principles: Ignore These at Your Peril
    • Original Purpose: The Main Thing Is to Keep the Main Thing the Main Thing
    • Original Context: The Book Was Not Written Directly to You
    • Repetition: Did We Say That Already?
    • Symbolism: More Than Meets the Eye
    • Christian Scripture: The Whole Is More Than Its Parts
  • Part 2: The Visions: Seeing Reality
    • Establishing Authority
    • Proclamations to Seven Churches
    • The Heavenly Throne Room
    • The Seven Seals
    • The Seven Trumpets
    • The Dragon and Beasts
    • The Seven Bowls
    • Babylon the Great
    • The Second Coming, Millennium, and Final Judgment
    • New Heavens and New Earth
  • Reading Revelation Rightly
  • Title: Reading the Book of Revelation: Five Principles for Interpretation
  • Author: Alexander E. Stewart
  • Publisher: Lexham Press
  • Publication Date: 2021
  • Page Count: 208
  • Format: Logos Digital, Paperback
  • Trim Size: 5.5x8.5
  • ISBN: 9781683595557

Alexander E. Stewart is vice president of academic services and professor of New Testament at Gateway Seminary in Ontario, California. He is author of a forthcoming volume on Revelation in the B&H Exegetical Guide to the Greek New Testament series and coauthor (with Andreas J. Köstenberger) of The First Days of Jesus, The Final Days of Jesus, and Jesus and the Future.


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    Print list price: $22.99
    Save $7.00 (30%)