Products>The Unseen Realm: Recovering the Supernatural Worldview of the Bible

The Unseen Realm: Recovering the Supernatural Worldview of the Bible

ISBN: 9781577995562


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An Unfiltered Look at the Unseen World

The psalmist declared that God presides over an assembly of divine beings (Psa. 82:1). Who are they? What does it mean when those beings participate in God’s decisions (1 Kings 22:19–23)? Why wasn’t Eve surprised when the serpent spoke to her? Why are Yahweh and his Angel fused together in Jacob’s prayer (Gen. 48:15–16)? How did descendants of the Nephilim (Gen. 6:4) survive the flood (Num. 13:33)? What are we to make of Peter and Jude’s belief in imprisoned spirits (2 Pet. 2:4; Jude 6)? Why does Paul describe evil spirits in terms of geographical rulership (thrones, principalities, rulers, authorities)? Who are the “glorious ones” that even angels dare not rebuke (2 Pet. 2:10–11)? Dr. Michael Heiser explores these biblical questions in The Unseen Realm: Recovering the Supernatural Worldview of the Bible.

The Unseen Realm presents the fruit of Dr. Heiser’s fifteen years of research into what the Bible really says about the unseen world of the supernatural. His goal is to help readers view the biblical text unfiltered by tradition or by theological presuppositions. He presents a clear biblical theology that cuts through our modern worldview that tends to ignore the unseen world. “People shouldn’t be protected from the Bible,” Dr. Heiser says. But theological systems often do just that, by “explaining away” difficult or troublesome passages of Scripture because their literal meaning doesn’t fit into our tidy systems.

In The Unseen Realm, Michael Heiser shines a light on the supernatural world—not a new light, but rather the same light the original, ancient readers—and writers—of Scripture would have seen it in, given their historical and cultural milieu. This light allows today’s pastors and scholars to understand the biblical authors’ supernatural worldview by presenting a biblical theology that embraces, rather than avoids, the unseen realm.

This is a “big” book in the best sense of the term. It is big in its scope and in its depth of analysis. Michael Heiser is a scholar who knows Scripture intimately in its ancient cultural context. All—scholars, clergy, and laypeople—who read this profound and accessible book will grow in their understanding of both the Old and New Testaments, particularly as their eyes are opened to the Bible’s “unseen world.”

—Tremper Longman III, Robert H. Gundry Professor of Biblical Studies, Westmont College

“How was it possible that I had never seen that before?” Dr Heiser’s survey of the complex reality of the supernatural world as the Scriptures portray it covers a subject that is strangely sidestepped. No one is going to agree with everything in his book, but the subject deserves careful study, and so does this book.

—Jon Goldingay, David Allan Hubbard Professor of Old Testament, Fuller Theological Seminary

There is a world referred to in the Scripture that is quite unseen, but also quite present and active. Michael Heiser’s The Unseen Realm seeks to unmask this world. Heiser shows how prevalent and important it is to understand this world and appreciate how its contribution helps to make sense of Scripture. The book is clear and well done, treating many ideas and themes that often go unseen themselves. With this book, such themes will no longer be neglected, so read it and discover a new realm for reflection about what Scripture teaches.

—Darrell L. Bock, Executive Director for Cultural Engagement, Howard G. Hendricks Center for Christian Leadership and Cultural Engagement. Senior Research Professor of New Testament Studies, Dallas Theological Seminary

There’s More to See in the Unseen Realm

Based on the bestselling book by Michael S. Heiser, the new feature-length documentary The Unseen Realm casts a light on the strange and enigmatic plane of the supernatural that lies within the pages of Scripture. And what we discover are two distinct worlds—with vastly different inhabitants—created and ruled by one loving triune God. Watch the movie on Faithlife TV.

  • Part 1: First Things
    • Reading Your Bible Again—for the First Time
    • Rules of Engagement
  • Part 2: The Households of God
    • God’s Entourage
    • God Alone
    • As in Heaven, So on Earth
    • Gardens and Mountains
    • Eden—Like No Place on Earth
    • Only God Is Perfect
    • Peril and Providence
  • Part 3: Divine Transgressions
    • Appearances Can Be Deceiving
    • Like the Most High?
    • Divine Transgression
    • The Bad Seed
    • Divine Allotment
    • Cosmic Geography
  • Part 4: Yahweh and His Portion
    • Abraham’s Word
    • Yahweh Visible and Invisible
    • What’s in a Name?
    • Who Is Like Yahweh?
    • Retooling the Template
    • God’s Law, God’s Council
    • Realm Distinction
  • Part 5: Conquest and Failure
    • Giant Problems
    • The Place of the Serpent
    • Holy War
  • Part 6: Thus Says The Lord
    • Mountains and Valleys
    • Standing in the Council
    • Divine Misdirection
    • The Rider of the Clouds
    • Prepare to Die
  • Part 7: The Kingdom Already
    • Who Will God for Us?
    • Preeminent Domain
    • A Beneficial Death
    • Infiltration
    • Son of God, Seed of Abraham
    • Lower Than the Elohim
    • This Means War
    • Choosing Sides
  • Part 8: The Kingdom Not Yet
    • Final Verdict
    • Foe from the North
    • The Mount of Assembly
    • Describing the Indescribable
  • Epilogue
  • Title: The Unseen Realm: Recovering the Supernatural Worldview of the Bible
  • Author: Michael S. Heiser
  • Publisher: Lexham Press
  • Publication Date: 2015
  • Pages: 384
  • Format: Logos Digital, Hardcover, Paperback
  • Trim Size: 6x9
  • Hardcover ISBN: 9781577995562
  • Paperback ISBN: 9781683592716

Michael S. Heiser is the academic editor for Logos Bible Software, Bible Study Magazine, and Faithlife Study Bible. He is the coeditor of Old Testament Greek Pseudepigrapha with Morphology and Semitic Inscriptions: Analyzed Texts and English Translations; he is also the Hebrew instructor for Learn to Use Hebrew for Logos Bible Software. He earned his PhD in Hebrew Bible and Semitic languages and holds an MA in ancient history and Hebrew studies. In addition, he was named the 2007 Pacific Northwest Regional Scholar by the Society of Biblical Literature.


104 ratings

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  1. Ivy M.

    Ivy M.


  2. Lonnie Liston
  3. Russell Leigon
  4. David



  5. Jeremy Hulsey

    Jeremy Hulsey


  6. Terri Miller

    Terri Miller


    I might own all of Dr. Heiser books. I really like them except I wish I had bought them thru this web site for the digital that goes w/ logos. I haven't been a logos subscriber for long so now I feel like I'm missing out. bummer.

  7. John Merriel

    John Merriel


  8. alex shore-nye
  9. Faithlife User
  10. Alex Skvortsov
    This book has some good ideas. However, most of the book is a series of non-sequiturs and bad arguments. He takes one concept, what he calls the 'Deuteronomy 32 world view' and then does all kinds of acrobatics with various verses to make them fit his conclusion. Often, he will find the same noun mentioned in two different places and that to him is what connects two distinct concepts. I really think this book is worth a read but I also recommend it for a student of logic. Write out any one of his arguments and see the common fallacies committed in action.

  11. peace on earth & goodwill towards men
    Highly Excellent and ESSENTIAL. I've been exceedingly busy so I've not read it complete from front to back. but I've read good chunks and will finish it once I have the time. This should be REQUIRED reading for all Pastors.

  12. Lazard337



  13. Steven L. Gravett
  14. Martin Kuiper

    Martin Kuiper


  15. Jesse Dagel

    Jesse Dagel


    This is a must read. For a long time I was in a place of seeing two extreme views of things "spiritual." One being the charismatic hype, which I always found to be manipulative and did not at all jive with the God I saw revealed in Jesus. So I was very much in the camp that I see a lot of people in, where things such as angels, demons or any being outside of the trinity or humans were trivialized to the point that they really don't even matter to our understanding of the created universe. Then I heard about Michael Heiser's work through The Bible Project podcast talking about this subject. I essentially inhaled this book. It was essential in what I knew was a huge missing piece in my understanding of the bible. There is a spiritual realm that is not wild hype or cartoony. Once you understand what the ancient writers were really thinking about, you will see this all over the place in scripture, then passages that you would have read right over and given no thought to will leap of the page as an important part of the story. Uncover what is 'hidden in plain sight.'

  16. Danny Scotton Jr.
    This book is definitely eye-opening

  17. Kevin Dobson

    Kevin Dobson


  18. Tyler Daniels
    This is not Biblical scholarship. The whole foundation of this author's views are founded in extra-biblical sources.

  19. Landon Brake

    Landon Brake


  20. John T Reagan

    John T Reagan


  21. Spencer Alexander
  22. Layne Reading

    Layne Reading


  23. Stevan Atkins

    Stevan Atkins


  24. Karolina Skórska
  25. Arthur Brownlee

    Arthur Brownlee


    What a great find.

  26. Pastor Richard Franklin
  27. Dawn Brewer

    Dawn Brewer


  28. Ryan Carson

    Ryan Carson


    Game-changer. Thank you, Dr. Heiser, for your intellectual integrity and your humble, disciplined approach to these holy texts. This connected so many dots for me. Most importantly, your teaching prompts me to even deeper, richer worship of my great God and King (and brother!), Jesus Christ.

  29. Matt Mouzakis

    Matt Mouzakis


  30. Rev. Robert Sundquist
  31. Jamin Bradley

    Jamin Bradley


  32. Jerry Rogers

    Jerry Rogers


  33. "Miko" - Michael Mikolajczyk
    I am not sure how, but somehow I was not familiar with Dr. Heiser's books and works. But sometime in early 2018 I finally did so and I am very grateful the Lord has directed me to be able to do so. I have listened or watched almost all of his Naked Bible Podcasts and Youtube videos on a huge variety of subjects. I have read many of his articles and have almost a complete collection of his books on my Kindle. And I am getting ready to add a couple of his books to my Logos library so I can do a more in depth study with them. I hope you consider writing a book about the Ancient Hebrew and the 2nd Temple Period with the 1st Century Period Hebrew mindset and way of thinking. I have watched your video about it and it only had me hoping for more information about it and how to obtain it. Discovery of your works has opened up and made more real the supernatural realm of the Bible in my reading and in my life. It has brought an aspect of my life and of following Jesus, our Lord that I did not know I was missing out on. It is almost like a perpetual adrenaline rush about life in the Kingdom of Heaven currently and has deepened the knowing of our future in the Kingdom of Heaven. Being an artist, it has also given a burst of inspiration to figure out how I can use my gifts of comic book illustration to share the same excitement of this new found knowledge I have gained from the now discovery of this supernatural realm. Seeing my younger brother with a book in his hand to read is almost as unlikely as hunting the ever elusive animal... the snipe. But I got him to try "The Facade" and he was hooked; finishing it rather quickly and then finishing "The Portent" I think even quicker. And in what I would deem a miracle, he is currently reading 'Reversing Hermon". his first theological book, LoL. I hope the Lord in His providence will give me the chance to meet Dr. Heiser at some point. To let him know how much his work has helped me in understanding the Bible in ways I had not known about, i.e. , the Divine Council, etc. It has really opened a lot of misunderstood and mysterious Biblical passages and themes for me. And has opened up many conversations between my younger brother and myself as well. If you happen by chance to come across this comment, Dr. Heiser... Thank you for all of your intensive and creative work and I and my brother look forward to new works that you tackle in the future. I am very thankful that the Lord directed me to your scholarship. May the Lord continue to bless you, Miko

  34. Matthew



  35. Billy Avery

    Billy Avery


  36. Paul Rowlands

    Paul Rowlands


  37. Warren Dane

    Warren Dane


    Dr. Heiser provides a solid biblical basis that unpacks the biblical worldview of the culture that surrounded the writers of scripture and their response to it by the Holy Spirit's inspiration. He uses scripture to interpret scripture. The scriptures relating to the "Last Days" become very clear. Beginning with Genesis and moving through the Old and New testaments he underlines how the sovereign Creator (Yahweh) WILL accomplish His great purpose in creation. As a pastor whose seminary training included Hebrew and Greek exegesis, Dr. Heiser's expertise in the languages and his extensive study of numerous related studies is most impressive - almost overwhelming in thought filled detail. The Unseen Realm comes alive in this work. HIGHLY RECOMMEND!

  38. Tracy Reed

    Tracy Reed


  39. Paul Petersen

    Paul Petersen


  40. Frank Payne

    Frank Payne


    I am just a layman who loves to study the Bible and occasionally get a chance to teach a few hungry souls from time to time. I have discovered that over the decades I have been on this earth, that I am one of those people who study the Bible much more than the average person in the pew. When "Unseen Realm" came out I quickly dismissed it as something I had already studied years ago. Then I read a Logos blog about the book and realized it was much more than I thought it was going to be. I bought the book and first read it through, then spent the next year studying it, checking cross references, footnotes, and the authors additional notes on the website. This has been one of the most rewarding studies I have ever done. I felt pretty secure in my understanding of the OT. After thoroughly studying this book it is as if my black and white picture of the OT has been transformed into high definition color. Get this book, roll up your sleeves, and dig in. The time spent studying this gem as opposed to just reading it is time well spent. You will reap much more than what you put into it.

  41. Edward Wright
    a must read. This will make a lot of strange Bible stories fall into place

  42. Jeff Phillips
  43. Cindy clark

    Cindy clark


    I tend to think Dr. Heiser is probably right about his educational specialty of ancient history regarding the supernatural realm, which helps to explain a few Old Testament passages. For that I give this book 4 stars. Unfortunately, his cult-like following (if you want to know what I am talking about, just listen to a few of his podcasts) has demanded he go on to explain the Bible in general and in this he is completely deficient. His explanation of Pentecost being the fulfillment of the re-gathering of all Israel into her land forevermore...well, it is so ridiculous that it demonstrates how far he will go to put his own personal pet theories above the truth of the Word of God. For that 0 stars. Overall 2 stars.

    The previews used are both impressive and intimidating. The author's style of writing is with English that constantly challenges the reader's ability to comprehend and digest the content. If one is able to overcome those hurdles then one is seemingly guaranteed quite a pleasant ride.

  46. Seth Koh

    Seth Koh


  47. David C. Alves



    I believe this is one of the more important books on the bible that I have read in a long time. However be warned this is not an easy read if you are being thoughtful about what is being said. Sometimes I had to set it down to reflect on it. It is challenging to the truly modern men that we have become, even in the church, so rooted in the physical world that we disregard the supernatural forces we see in the bible. I still have questions, and I will have to reread (bought in the Kindle format, but I will buy to use with my Logos). Mr. Heiser has written on something that has not really seen the light of day. One additional note: I have been watching "Questions Aloud" on FaithlifeTV, and happy to see Mr. Heiser is a fellow curmudgeon.

  49. HongIl



  50. F B Folmer

    F B Folmer


  51. Caleb Carpenter
    Remarkable work and very helpful. Wonderful job of elucidating the concept of the Divine Council and some threads which are hidden to us but which were likely quite apparent to the first hearers and readers of the New Testament. Kudos to Dr. Heiser. I'm looking forward now to his book "Reversing Hermon." BTW, do NOT buy this on Kindle. Yes, it's $15 more, but you will want to interact with the footnotes and biblical references in the Logos environment.

  53. Ricardo Romero
  54. Dan Schimelpfenig
  55. Adrian Daniel Odom
    Dr. Heiser's books brought Enoch's to life for me. I believe that viewing the present in light of the past has changed my future!

  56. Elvindowski



  57. Jim Brooks

    Jim Brooks


  58. Robin D. Camp
  59. Theo



    Unreal is the Unseen Realm! One will finally see the Bible as it was meant to be read with this guide!

  60. Robyn VH.

    Robyn VH.


  61. Cameron Conway
  62. JoshInRI



    Terrance, I read your great post with interest below. I don't enjoy theological fiction and fanciful conjecture so I wont be reading Heiser ever again. I started to and then asked for/received a refund.

  63. Terrence Daniels
    I grew up Pentecostal and so someone arguing that there are spiritual beings, angelic or demonic, is neither new nor probative. Arguing that there are a council of created beings that the Triune God has set over things is interesting but speculative. Arguing that we have any real basis for understanding ANE cultural or religious perceptions is to argue that our glasses are not colored and that we can take them off. Sorry, our lenses are embedded in our eyes and we have no shot at understanding world views that don't presupposed a Post-Enlightenment understanding of the world. Nor is there nearly enough literature to parse such a world view from the Biblical texts. Luke Timothy Johnson is such a frustrating critic of the Historical Jesus movement because he is dead on, and while I like to read and have benefited from NT Wright, the fact is that the Historical Jesus is more a construct in my head as opposed to an objective truth. Now add 10 to 20 centuries and no Hebrew writings outside of scripture and we find ourselves contemplating our navels. A fun thing to do, but ultimately, highly speculative. I would be happier if the author just stipulated that this is a well informed, well argued SWAG at Psalms 82 up front instead of a what seems to be perceived as so seminal moment in Christian history where the blindfold comes off and we finally see the wizard. One final thought: Time doesn't exist to God; it can't and he be the container of everything, including the universe. If he isn't the container of the universe, then it is his container, and we really should re-evalute a great many things. Since all things that are or have and will ever be are known to him in no time, all things that have ever been and ever will be are now. Consequently, nothing that could be is because all that will be is. If knowing that will be is equivalent to predestination, then from our perspective it is predestined. Does God intended it? Who can know the mind of God or understand his ways. It isn't just a nice catch phrase. No one knows; in fact, the desire to know outside of God is sort of how we all came to our sorry state. I did enjoy reading the book; just don't agree with the conclusions.

  64. Dr. Mark Richardson
  65. Joshua Tan

    Joshua Tan


  66. Mark D. Anderson
  67. vondale lutchman
  68. Tom Daniels

    Tom Daniels


    I just bought The Unseen Realm on Kindle for $9.95 and it was not on sale. Why would you be selling it for $25? Had the price not been so ridiculous here I would have purchased it from Logos. Typical of logos price gouging tactics.

  69. DavePL HI Haoli KI
  70. Rev. Lutjens

    Rev. Lutjens


  71. Christopher Kou

    Christopher Kou


    A good introduction to a concept that has been out there for a very long time among academics. Heiser presents a popularized overview of the spiritual worldview of Scripture, some of which he goes into more scholarly detail of in his dissertation (available online). I believe some correctives to the thesis must be in order, however, and while I realize this is a popular work, I would have liked to have seen more references in the footnotes. Weaknesses include various assumptions that I believe he makes, his view of Scripture being of the more text critical school. The argument for Harmagedon as Har-Moed, which I agree with, is very underdeveloped and, I think, poorly argued. And his treatment of Psalm 82, while fascinating and plausible on a purely ANE comparative studies level, leaves out treatment of John 10:34-35, reducing it to a mere footnote due to "space constraints." I also feel that Heiser has some rather large theological blind spots, particularly in the area of anthropology, soteriology, and eschatology, that hamper his evaluation of certain texts and issues. Heiser has a tendency to present some of his ideas as if they are essentially new and previously undiscovered insights, where the truth is that this kind of discussion of the Divine Council in OT literature has been going on for decades. I think it ultimately hurts his presentation, as people are (rightly) wary of "new" theology. There is more that could be said, specifically about how Israel's role in Scripture affects Heiser's thesis. I am currently working on a thesis paper in which I hope to deal with some of these issues, so I'll reserve more detailed commentary for that. Suffice to say, I do recommend Unseen Realm, with caution and reservation, as an introduction and popularization of some observations that scholars have been making on the OT text for a very long time. Those discussions have taken place largely in academic ivory towers behind closed doors, so Unseen Realm is a welcome popular presentation. The chapter on the Angel of Yahweh is particularly brilliant, and I would recommend the book on the merit of that alone. But, as always, read with discernment.

  72. Darryl Smith

    Darryl Smith


  73. Erick  R. Kendall
  74. Faithlife User

    Faithlife User


  75. Daniel Jomphe

    Daniel Jomphe


  76. Miguel A. Calderon
    Mike Heiser work account or anyone: Will this book be available in Spanish sometime for those like myself in the Hispanic Ministry? Thank you.

  78. John Sheeley

    John Sheeley


    Dr. Heiser, I enjoyed reading the book until you started what seems like a defense of the regional flood theory. Do you not ascribe to a worldwide flood? I must admit that my enjoyment doesn't necessarily equate with agreement. It also seems like you advocate there being other gods above angels but below Yahweh, am I wrong in this thought? I'll be honest, I am suspicious when anyone starts claiming to reveal a truth that's been hidden from the church. Not sure if that's what you mean to say but that's certainly the tone of what I've read. Appreciate any feedback or response.

  79. chris price

    chris price


    Outstanding! Nothing more needs to be said.

  80. Dean Poulos

    Dean Poulos


    Nicely done overall, however careful discernment is needed in certain areas.

  81. Elizabeth Parker
  82. Ron Harris

    Ron Harris


  83. Paul Henry

    Paul Henry


  84. Anita Van Hal
  85. Wang Jenn Chyuan
    It is just amazing how this reality could have been blotted out of the Christian consciousness for the last 2000 years. The God, the bible and the spiritual realm finally made sense for me.

    I recommend this book. Read it slowly and be attentive. As I was standing outside earlier thinking about some of the material, I looked up into the night sky and thought to myself, my awareness of creation has become fuller.

  87. Mr & Mrs Antoine
  88. Terry Vanlaningham
  89. Jonathan P Muir

    Jonathan P Muir


  90. Sean



    While I am sympathetic to the overall thesis regarding the Bible's overarching narrative of cosmic-conflict, this work has significant problems that diminish its value towards understanding that narrative. For the sake of brevity (!), I will outline a few of the major problems: 1. Many reviewers state that this is a very scholarly, academic-level work. Actually, it is not. Although it's very evident that a lot of quality research has gone into the work and stands in its background, Heiser herein neglects one of the most important requirements of academic writing: "show your work." And, the more radical or controversial the conclusions, the more strongly they need to be proven. But little of this is provided here. Some of the necessary work is outsourced to the companion website--which I have not read--and this is not a bad idea for tangential or highly technical matters. However, the major points really needed to be demonstrated clearly, and this was not done, especially for the overall thesis, point #2 below. 2. Heiser's thesis--boiled down--is that Psalm 82 is the hermeneutical key to the Bible. From the beginning, God [YHWH] had a "divine council" of other, created divine beings or "gods." The story of the Bible, especially the OT, is of his conflict with them and how it affects life on earth. The divine council is his first family, humanity is his second, and his goal is to unite the two. ALL OF THIS IS ASSERTED, NOT DEMONSTRATED. Heiser does not, in this work, explain why Ps. 82 is a hermeneutical key, what are the viable alternative interpretations, and why his viewpoint is superior to them. Reading to the end of the book, he never explains what exactly these "gods" are (they are not angels). He also chooses to outsource discussion of John 10.34-35, where Jesus quotes this Psalm, to the website--this being the factor that ultimately made me give the book 2 instead of 3 stars. All of this needed to be explained in the book. It might have taken 100 additional pages, but it would have been worth it. 3. Heiser does not, more than very superficially in a note or two, deal with the literary and critical issues surrounding his key texts--and the issues with them are extremely significant. For example, he jumps from Ps. 82 to Gen. 1.26--the "elohim" of the divine council/family are the "us" of this verse--to Gen. 3.4, and ties them all together in support of his thesis. That involves a huge number of assumptions that need to be listed out, developed, and justified, but again, this has not been done. I suppose such connections can be made under the assumption of a very uniform doctrine of inspiration, that all the authors of the biblical texts use the same words the same way and mean the same thing by them. Ironically, by taking a moderately critical approach that allows prioritization of the Bible's clear teachings and contextual variation from one passage to another, one can arrive at a much more orthodox theology. 4. In the end, I see little difference between the view asserted here and henotheism, the belief in many gods of which YHWH is supreme. (The word "henotheism" only occurs twice, both times in footnotes referencing an article by Heiser, and is never discussed.) I'm sure this would be strenuously denied--okay, deny it in the book! Explain how this is not henotheism, what exactly the "gods" are, how this reconciles with firm biblical monotheism, and what we should do with it in terms of altering our beliefs. Instead, there is silence on all these matters. A radically innovative conclusion that controverts received interpretation has been made, one that has major implications for how we believe, but no help is given for processing that conclusion and making necessary adjustments in theology. I acknowledge that this review has mostly been critical--a necessary counterbalance to others and to the heavy marketing of the book. It's certainly an interesting read and not at all what I expected when I first saw the title. I do want to thank Dr. Heiser & Logos for making this available as a preview in Logos Now. I am glad to have read it, but unfortunately I cannot unreservedly recommend it to others, nor would I use it as a source for exploring, writing, or teaching about related issues.

  91. Rod MacIlvaine

    Rod MacIlvaine


    This is an outstanding work. Is there an audio version coming out at some point? This would be a great candidate for audio!!

  92. Floyd  Johnson

    Floyd Johnson


    I know that many are fans of Michael Heiser. I am not. That is not because I have a problem with him or his writing, I just am not familiar with him. I do not have enough knowledge of his work to be or not to be a fan. Having said that, I found the current volume to be a significant improvement to his earlier work, <u>I Dare You To Bore Me With The Bible</u>. As I read the current work, I felt as if the author had access to my previous review prior to writing this book. Such concerns as a lack of an index (this book has two, including a Subject Index and a Scripture Index). References and footnotes are provided throughout the text. In addition, a companion website provides additional bibliographic materials. The companion website also contains a discussion guide - which delves more deeply into the topics covered in the text. Having been trained in the sciences, where most textbooks include discussion questions and problem sets allowing the student to check their understanding of the topics, I have often wondered why there are not similar pages in the texts for other disciplines - including theology. Though not a standard adopted by publishers, this would appear to be the major lapse in the current text (and most theological texts). That fact notwithstanding, the current book is worth the time spent reading, considering, and responding to its contents. I would encourage many to take the time to partake of the author’s thought and conclusions. ______________ This review is based on a free electronic copy provided by the publisher for the purpose of creating this review. The opinions expressed are my own.

  93. Ken Schafer

    Ken Schafer


    I have begun this book and told people that it reads like a David Baldacci thriller. (As an aside, the spiritual order envisioned by Heiser closely parallels that given by Tolkien at the outset of The Silmarillion). Coupled with the work of John Walton, it seems that we are getting a chance to revisit and/or expand upon some of our basic understandings of creation and the unfolding of history--exciting stuff! I am also amazed at the amount of topics and the depth in which they are studied by scholars of all persuasions as it relates to biblical studies and backgrounds. How does one person gain familiarity with al of this?! Heiser has managed to author a fairly scholarly work that is sill readable by a person willing to invest the effort. I appreciate the moments of dialogue he has with the reader. I have not yet visited the companion website (trying to read all of the footnotes is a challenge), but I think it is a great addition. I must agree with Jim Stowe and others concerning the cost of the book. I used a birthday certificate, and that brought the cost down. Otherwise, why pay Logos significantly more for the book? It is great to be linked to one's library, of course, but it seems that Logos might have missed a chance to pick up some customers by keeping the price down. I am looking forward to the sequel on November 15.

  94. Jim Stowe

    Jim Stowe


    I love Logos. I own the Platinum package. I actually started using Logos back when it was still distributed on 3.5-inch floppy discs. I love how Logos editions of works like "The Unseen Realm" will link to other texts in my library. All of that being said, I'm not sure it justifies the $24.95 price for the Logos edition compared to the $9.99 price for the Kindle edition at Amazon. It seems odd that Lexham Press (a Logos imprint) is selling the Kindle edition for less than half the price of the Logos edition. Just my $0.02.

  95. Stephen Smith

    Stephen Smith


    So I have a question about this book as provided from Logos. I am assuming that the book has numerous references to bible versions among other things. Are those reference linked to my Logos software so that I can click on them and the corresponding reference is opened? Thanks

  96. irwin steagall

    irwin steagall


    ordered 9 21 have not received the book

  97. Maggie Segar

    Maggie Segar


  98. Ronald Gregg Dupree, Jr.
    Mike Heiser is a very gifted thinker, researcher, and communicator. The content of this book is not flippant or off-the-cuff. You can tell the ideas presented are forged from years of world-class study, peer-review, and work from both Heiser and the work of many others whom he has interacted with and references. Unseen Realm distills a lot of research work and information in a way that is very accessible to non-specialists. However, for those interested and motivated, he provides copious footnotes and breadcrumbs for people to go and research further for themselves. There are additional notes and bibliography on the companion website that are quite good. The target audience for the book seems to be people who take Scripture seriously and are motivated to understand it as best they can. I think this book is invaluable for this kind of person. As for me, I’ve been a committed Christian who has taken Scripture seriously for over thirty years. I’m not a formally trained biblical scholar or theologian (I have an engineering degree and make software for a living). However, I’ve spent a good bit of time interacting with many different people, ideas, and writing of various Christian theological traditions. I’ve followed Mike’s work for a while; honestly, this book, along with Mike’s other work, has opened up Scripture for me more than anything else I’ve come across. Those ‘odd’ passages are much less ‘odd’ now. Also, I’m inclined to see almost everything through a much more spiritual lens now. One other thing I really appreciate about this book is its lack of ‘cheerleading’ for any specific theological tradition or doctrinal distinctive. So much evangelically oriented writing includes the writer continually working in whatever their particular ‘hobby horses’ happen to be (Calvinism, egalitarianism, a particular eschatological system, etc.), even when it’s only marginally or not even relevant to the overall topic being written about. This book stays committed to its topic and really is committed to getting the best understanding of Scripture in its original context without having to annoy and distract the reader with an author’s ‘hobby horses’. Overall, I think this book may be a bit ‘ahead of its time’. I’m not sure a lot of Christians are seriously ready to interact with how the Biblical authors really conceived of the ‘Unseen Realm’. Over time, I think more and more Christians will have to decide if the can really, actually, believe the things the Biblical authors believed about divine beings and their role in the cosmos, and what bearing that should have on their life as a disciple of King Jesus.

  99. Cynthia McDaniel
    This book had a different view than usual and supported the idea of the unseen realm through Biblical quotes (several of them). Enough of them to prove to the open minded person that the unseen realm is real although it is ignored sometimes even by believers in God. Although some are apparently not sure about what to do about his view, at least one well respected scholar reviewed his book with respect for his scholarship and knowledge of Biblical languages. Thereby, I think, validating that the unseen realm which Dr. Heiser explores is real and indicated in Biblical text. That being said, I do not think that he is correct in his interpretation of the texts that he identified. That is, he thinks that God has two families: an earthly one and a heavenly one. I believe that God has no parallel and that the "family" that he has identified concerns the terminology used by the Bible concerning the prophets of God. In other words, many of them are identified as sons of God. This is acknowledged by Dr. Heiser. He makes the identification of Jesus as a son of God different from other applications of the term because of the way in which it is applied to Jesus. Thus, it enabled him to identify a "family" for God. I do think that the identification of quotes showing episodes and actions of "angels", of council meetings which imply that God confers with a group of heavenly beings is important. I think that other explanations for them are not only possible but more likely than the ones that Mr. Heiser have offered. Nonetheless, the fact that such a respected scholar has been thinking about these quotations and has offered an explanation for them is necessary for the discussion of what these verses mean in God's Plan.

  100. Rommel



    Thought provoking and life changing!

  101. Raymond Sevilla
  102. Conrad Barnett
    This book is challenging some long held theological beliefs, which is a good thing. This book is also confirming somethings, which is a good thing. Dr. Heiser thanks for being open to Spirit in write this book.

  103. Kendall Sholtess
  104. Kevin O'Malley
    The book's article here on Logos caught my eye, but as I started reading the reviews I was somewhat surprise to find not reviews on the content but criticism over pricing. Perhaps true, one could obtain a digital copy for far less money than what Logos is offering it. But the question I always ask, where is my money going? do I buy from the company that helps build the Kingdom of God or do I buy from a company that couldn't care less about the Kingdom. The choice to me is always clear, being a good steward of money is deeper than just finding a cheaper price. I'll spend the extra money here, perhaps those extra dollars will help keep Logos in business another day longer.

  105. Brian Lopez

    Brian Lopez


    I have read his book draft in late 2008, early 2009. We were all eager to read the final version. In this final version of it, we discover much more solid scholarship on a lot of "unseen" and controversial biblical concepts. Heiser successfully shakes, destroys, rebuilds, and reconfigures our common, traditional viewpoints on the entire Bible. He truly guides you into seeing the Bible in light of an ancient Israelite or first-century Judeo-Christian follower. This 15-year-researched material was definitely not rushed, and it is worth your careful consideration and study. I've written a full review that I have not yet published, but will eventually publish on Amazon and other places.

  106. Timothy Slaughter
  107. Jeff Hendershot
    Was this book on pre-pub? If so I missed it! I really want it but wow- $25 here while Amazon Kindle has it for $10? Logos- your product has better study capabilities but how about a little break on the price?! :-(

  108. Rory Lennox

    Rory Lennox


    Do I qualify to write a review? Well, I have read The Unseen Realm. I have learned a lot as I have read the book. In fact, I have started my second reading. This is the best material I have read. Professor Heiser appears to have rooted out all the relevant passages. His presentation makes sense. Thanks.

  109. Gregory D. Earle
    From the reviews and discussion, I am highly interested in the chance to add this to my library. However, as much as I would love to add this to my Logos library, a printed copy through Amazon, or a digital copy through the Google Play Store, your choice for $9.99, causes me to question why I wouldn't spend roughly $5 less than Logos price (for digital only) and obtain a printed copy as well as a digital copy. Please advise!

  110. Professor Mario Porras
  111. Al Sosa

    Al Sosa


  112. Larry Liddiard

  113. Nancy Ho

    Nancy Ho


  114. Richard Labelle
    I totally agree with the analysis of LaRosa Johnson. Great resource. MUST be read. Thank you Michael. God bless you!

  115. Alex O. Sellman
    I purchased the Logos version of it and even with forcing a resource update, it won't download. Puzzling. Probably some minor glitch somewhere...

  116. Jerald R. McGowin
    Question is this a hard back book purchase or a logos download. or is this both

  117. Jeffrey Hill

    Jeffrey Hill


    In my 44 years as a believer and as a serious student of the Word for the past 20 yrs. I have had the privilege of reading a great number of books ( at least a thousand or more) on the subject of the Bible, but I must say this has skyrocketed to the top of the list. Simply said, as a believer you owe it to yourself to discovery the tremendous wealth of scholarly information found within the pages of this masterpiece of Biblical exegesis. No Christian should go without experiencing the eye opening, spiritual enlightening, mind renewing explosion contained within the pages of "The Unseen Realm: Recovering the supernatural worldview of the Bible" By: Dr. Michael S. Heiser. It is a MUST READ for sure!!!

  118. LaRosa Johnson
    I’ve learned a lot in my years as a Christian. One thing I’ve found is that your view of the spirit realm can vary greatly depending on the circles you’re a part of. One side will over emphasize the spiritual to the point that everything that happens in the physical is directly the result of some spiritual force. On the other hand you have Christians who act as if the spirit realm doesn’t exist, outside of the working of the Holy Spirit, but even limiting his influence. My own Christian journey has involved participation in many of these camps, swinging from one extreme to the other. I finally feel like I have a more biblically balanced view of the spiritual world, after many years of study. With that being said, when I was approached with the opportunity to review a book written on this subject by an author I respect, I jumped at the opportunity. The book is The Unseen Realm: Recovering the supernatural worldview of the Bible by Michael S. Heiser, scholar-in-residence at Faithlife. To be honest, I didn’t quite know what to expect when I got this book in hand. I’d read some of Dr. Heiser’s work before on his blog and in Bible Study Magazine, but I wasn’t wholly aware of his position on the spiritual. All I knew is that it was going to be a good and challenging read on a subject that I was interested in. So, I dove in headfirst and began devouring it. Like most academic level books, The Unseen Realm begins with some introductory material so the groundwork is laid and you know what to expect. Dr. Heiser starts the book by telling the story of how he even began to study this material. It started with a Sunday at church and a friend asking him to reading Psalm 82 in the Hebrew text. What he found began a fifteen year journey culminating in this book. After telling this story and recalling how it changed his approach to reading the Bible, he challenges the reader to do the same as they embark on this journey through the Scriptures. As Dr. Heiser states in these opening chapters, the key is to look at the Scriptures through supernatural lens employed by the biblical authors, not our modern understandings. If we can do that, we can understand the unseen realm. Once you get through the opening chapters, the remainder of the book is broken down into seven subsequent parts. Each section walks you through the biblical narrative and clearly explains instances where we encounter the supernatural in those passages. The book’s second section walks through the concept of the “divine counsel,” fully explaining what it is and is not. Spoiler alert: the divine counsel is more than the Trinity. Once that groundwork is laid, a discussion on Eden and what it means to be God’s image bearers ensues. The next section covers the Fall and everything that entails, including: Genesis 6, the flood, and the table of nations. If you were able to get with the concept of the divine counsel, this is where a lot of the Bible starts to make more sense if you look at it with a supernatural understanding. I’ll admit that Dr. Heiser’s explanation of the table of nations was mind blowing & enlightening. Parts 4 and 5 deal with the call of Abraham and Israel’s conquest & subsequent failure. The key takeaway from these sections is that God physically walked with his people. I had never considered such a thought before, but it makes perfect sense when read the passages again with the blinders off. Even though the fifth section was a bit difficult to get through because of its density and repetitiveness, how Israel went about their conquest makes a lot more sense, when you understand the spiritual forces they were battling. Part 6 is all about how God used the prophets, and specifically how they saw and spoke with the Lord. The book picks up considerable speed in the latter parts that deal with the ministry of Jesus, the early church, and eschatology. In The Unseen Realm I believe that Dr. Heiser does a wonderful job of bringing the spiritual realm to the forefront. He doesn’t sensationalize or over emphasize the matter at all. Instead, he helps us to understand how Jews, early Christians, and surrounding cultures would have understood these writings. God had a divine counsel, some of which rebelled. He gave the people over to some of these lower elohim (gods) and called out his own portion in Abraham. The rest of the story is how God works to restore Eden, ultimately through the work of Jesus and building of the Church. Even today we still must realize that the spiritual realm is real. We need to read the Bible with this understanding or we will miss a good portion of what God is trying to tell us. That is what this book seeks to drive home. Depending on your Christian upbringing, a lot of what Dr. Heiser says in this book will either confirm & strengthen what you already believe, or it will totally challenge and blow your mind. For me it was the former. For an academic level title, I felt it was very approachable and one I would recommend any student of theology read. I look forward to reading more of what Dr. Heiser writes on this subject in the future because I think he is spot on in his analysis. And if you’re not up for an academic level read, be on the lookout for the more accessible and condensed version titled Supernatural releasing later this year.


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