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The Revelation to John: A Commentary on the Greek Text of the Apocalypse [Hardcover]

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Item Specifications...

Pages   633
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 9.54" Width: 6.48" Height: 1.58"
Weight:   2.47 lbs.
Binding  Hardcover
Release Date   Sep 1, 2005
Publisher   IVP-InterVarsity Press
ISBN  0830828001  
EAN  9780830828005  


Availability  0 units.


Item Description...
Overview
The Revelation To John is a magisterial interpretation of John's Apocalypse as a grand drama, which can only be properly understood in light of John's Gospel and letters and in the context of the Johannine community. As such, it offers the reader a significantly different approach to this enigmatic text than that offered by most contemporary commentaries.

Publishers Description
The Revelation to John by Stephen Smalley is a magisterial interpretation of John's Apocalypse as a grand drama, which can only be properly understood in light of John's Gospel and letters and in the context of the Johannine community. As such, it offers the reader a significantly different approach to this enigmatic text than that offered by most contemporary commentaries. Working directly from the Greek text, Smalley offers a masterful analysis of the critical and literary dimensions of the Apocalypse for students and scholars alike.Contents includean in-depth, critical analysis of the Greek text of Revelationa wealth of scholarly interaction with other commentaries and interpretations of Revelationa canonical assessment of Revelation in light of other Johannine textsa historical understanding of Revelation in the context of the Johannine communityan interpretation of Revelation as cosmic dramaHere is a fresh contribution to the scholarly study of this captivating but often perplexing book of the Bible. Smalley demonstrates that the Apocalypse speaks directly to any situation in any age and offers a portrait of God's loving justice that is relevant to our own society.

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More About Stephen S. Smalley

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Stephen S. Smalley (Ph.D., Cambridge) is an internationally recognized Johannine scholar and Dean Emeritus of Chester Cathedral, England. His previous works include Christ and Spirit in the New Testament, John: Evangelist and Interpreter, and The Revelation to John.

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Reviews - What do our customers think?
A Very Learned Work with areas Where a Person Might Disagree  May 16, 2007
Stephen Smalley has given us a competent commentary on the Greek text of Revelation. He sees the book as a symbolic portrayal of the timeless conflict between the forces of evil and the forces of good. The imagery used to described the heavenly Christ in Revelation 1 is figurative and inspired by Ezekiel 1 and Daniel 7.

The promise to the Philadelphian church of being kept from the hour trial (3:10) refers to God's protection within the trial, not to a removal from the trial. The reference to the 24 elders in heaven (Rev 4) is to an angelic group in the throne room of God who represent the entire people of God. The seal, trumpet, and bowl judgments refer to an eschatological judgment of God upon an unbelieving world which can break into history at any point, and in all possible human contexts (see page 241). All of these judgments are symbolic, none of them will happen literally, as they did to the Egyptians in the book of Exodus.

The multitude in heaven praising God in Revelation 7 is not a description of the martyrs who were killed by the beast during the great tribulation, but this a reference to the entire people of God in His presence.

The mighty angel in Revelation 10, is just that, a mighty angel, and not a veiled depiction of Christ, as some have suggested.

The two witnesses who minister before the Lord of all the earth (Revelation 11) minister in the power of Moses and Elijah, but these two witnesses are a symbolic reference to the church's ministry on the earth.

In Revelation 12, Smalley describes the woman as the people of faith who brought forth the Messiah. The war in heaven is symbolic of the timeless battle between God and the Devil. The beast coming out of the sea (Revelation 13) represents all satanic governments opposed to the work and will of God. 666 spells out Nero Caesar, but can be aptly applied to any anti-God leader who oppresses the people of faith.

The 144,000 of Revelation 7 and 14 is a figure for the entire people of God. The 1000 years of Revelation 20 are symbolic for "a long time." Moreover, Revelation chapters 17-22 (following Greg Beale) are chiastic, and the new heavens and new earth are spiritual and metaphorical, not physical.

This pretty much sums up Smalley's take on the book of Revelation. I learned a lot. My main beef would be that since Revelation 6 mirrors the material in Matthew 24 (where Jesus clearly speaks of the future end times), I must conclude that there is more of an emphasis on the future than what Smalley seems to suggest.

But on the whole, this is a very valuable and learned work on the book of Revelation. Smalley includes extensive comments on the Greek text and on the possible variants. The general reader can skim and skip these sections and still enjoy the fruit of Smalley's findings.
 
Famine to feast  Dec 31, 2005
Over ten years ago the best commentary on Revelation I could find was Mounce (1st ed), then we had his second edition in 1997, followed by the huge works by Beale and Aune, since then we have had other useful works by Kistemaker, Brighton, Witherington and of course Osborne. Now, Smalley treats us to another scholarly masterpiece. He has already written a commentary on John's epistles (WBC) as well as the book "John: Evangelist & Interpreter".

He follows Beale in being a modified idealist following Hendriksen, Caird, Sweet and Wilcock. He regards the author as being John the apostle and assumes an early date, but this is not noticable in his comments. His introduction is short, but he has already published "Thunder and Love" which covers much introductory material. He covers a section at a time under the headings: translation, textual variants, literary setting, comment, and theology. There are a number of useful excursuses. The commentary is based on the Greek, but the Greek is transliterated. At 633pp he is not as verbose as Beale and is far more readable. Students now have to choose between Mounce, Osborne and Smalley.

He regards the first seal as "lust for power"; Ch 7 deals with the church on earth and in heaven; the two witnesses are the witnessing church; the woman of Ch 12 is the covenant community of God from both the OT and NT; Babylon is worldly, idolatrous, oppressive powers; on Ch 20 he is amillennial.

This commentary was a big treat for me, another very useful contribution on the book of Revelation. It is a delight to read and I am still working my way through it. From famine ten years ago I have now become a glutton.
 

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