Revelations: Visions, Prophecy, and Politics in the Book of Revelation

Revelations: Visions, Prophecy, and Politics in the Book of Revelation

4.1 21
by Elaine Pagels
     
 

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ISBN-10: 0670023345

ISBN-13: 9780670023349

Pub. Date: 03/06/2012

Publisher: Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated

A startling exploration of the history of the most controversial book of the Bible, by the bestselling author of Beyond Belief.

Through the bestselling books of Elaine Pagels, thousands of readers have come to know and treasure the suppressed biblical texts known as the Gnostic Gospels. As one of the world's foremost religion scholars, she has

Overview

A startling exploration of the history of the most controversial book of the Bible, by the bestselling author of Beyond Belief.

Through the bestselling books of Elaine Pagels, thousands of readers have come to know and treasure the suppressed biblical texts known as the Gnostic Gospels. As one of the world's foremost religion scholars, she has been a pioneer in interpreting these books and illuminating their place in the early history of Christianity. Her new book, however, tackles a text that is firmly, dramatically within the New Testament canon: The Book of Revelation, the surreal apocalyptic vision of the end of the world . . . or is it?

In this startling and timely book, Pagels returns The Book of Revelation to its historical origin, written as its author John of Patmos took aim at the Roman Empire after what is now known as "the Jewish War," in 66 CE. Militant Jews in Jerusalem, fired with religious fervor, waged an all-out war against Rome's occupation of Judea and their defeat resulted in the desecration of Jerusalem and its Great Temple. Pagels persuasively interprets Revelation as a scathing attack on the decadence of Rome. Soon after, however, a new sect known as "Christians" seized on John's text as a weapon against heresy and infidels of all kinds-Jews, even Christians who dissented from their increasingly rigid doctrines and hierarchies.

In a time when global religious violence surges, Revelations explores how often those in power throughout history have sought to force "God's enemies" to submit or be killed. It is sure to appeal to Pagels's committed readers and bring her a whole new audience who want to understand the roots of dissent, violence, and division in the world's religions, and to appreciate the lasting appeal of this extraordinary text.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780670023349
Publisher:
Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated
Publication date:
03/06/2012
Pages:
256
Product dimensions:
5.80(w) x 8.10(h) x 1.10(d)
Age Range:
18 Years

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Revelations: Visions, Prophecy, and Politics in the Book of Revelation 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 21 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anything that Elaine Pagels writes is worth having in your library. She's a great researcher and fluid writer.
Floramae More than 1 year ago
If you like to know the "how did it get this way?" you will enjoy Revelations. As a teenager I read this chapter of the bible and as an adult had let it pass from my memory. I have pursued many paths to understanding and had questions about the symbolism of that chapter. This not only made sense but made me more aware of the different choices early Christians had to make.
TedMorgan More than 1 year ago
Any work by Professor Pagels is good to read. This is a popular work with a great deal of depth to it. I think that I have read all of her books, though not all her published work. Part of what makes this book great is that this is a work that a non-believer can enjoy. The references are quite good. The level of scholarship is sound with Dr. Pagels working with a broad range of current and earlier scholarship.
HandsHeal2 More than 1 year ago
Elaine Pagels uses excellent historical scholarship by bringing the Book of Revelations into perspective for modern times. By helping us understand the times in which it was written and what was happening historically at the time, we are better able to put this book into it's proper context. She is also and excellent writer. Her prose flows and doesn't get bogged down in professorial weightiness.
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The_hibernators More than 1 year ago
In her newest book, Pagels explores the history of John of Patmos' Book of Revelation. She outlines what we know about John of Patmos, what he was trying to say with his preaching, and how contemporaries may have responded. The second half of the book covers the history of Christianity in the first two centuries C.E., with emphasis on Pagels' favorite topic of disparate beliefs among early groups. She completes the book with a description of how the Bible Cannon was chosen, with some suggestions about why John of Patmos' Book of Revelation was the only apocalyptic literature included. Pagels' writing is clear and interesting, though a bit repetitive--especially if you've read some of her earlier works. If you're interested in early church history, especially the disparate groups of Christians, then this is the book for you. If you're interested in apocalyptic literature in early Christian history, then the first half of this book, and the tail end, is for you.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
An excellent survy om the story of the Book of Revelation.The only complaint that I have is that the chapters can sometimes gets a little long winded, however the reader that plows on will be rewarded with an excellent study on this controversial book of the bible.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is a must check out book! Revelations in the Bible is difficult to understand, but this book makes you think about how the Bible states things. I found this book interesting in the way it states about the books in the Bible and also the "secret" books or lost books and who the authors are believed to be.
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Really enjoyed this carefully resesrched book. Would've enjoyed more textual analysis of Revelation but overall does a great job showcasing the history of the Book. Give this to your fundamentalist Xian friend and watch them squirm!
Fair-and-Balanced More than 1 year ago
I gave it three stars because of the historical coverage on the Roman Empire, and Greek's. Speaks very little of the Book of Revelations, and the little insight on symbolism the author offers is mostly incorrect. The best book to read for symbolism is "The Book of Revelations" a verse by verse description by Richard Draper.
ESLLady More than 1 year ago
Too academic for me.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I'm not sure a work on Revelations by someone who spent a great deal of time giving credence to the gnostics will be credible, since early christianity rejected the gnostic gospels out of the gate, since they had more direct links to the epistles written by the apostles. Generally, you can think of the gnostics as a group attempting to rewrite established epistles to the early churches (that is christians meeting, usually secretly, in homes.)
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Hard to write a review on a book I just ordered and have yet to receive