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

By Elaine Pagels

A profound exploration of the Bible's so much debatable book—from the writer of Beyond Belief and The Gnostic Gospels

The strangest booklet of the hot testomony, full of visions of the Rapture, the whore of Babylon, and apocalyptic writing of the top of occasions, the booklet of Revelation has involved readers for greater than thousand years, yet the place did it come from? And what are the meanings of its surreal photographs of dragons, monsters, angels, and cosmic war?

            Elaine Pagels, New York Times bestselling writer and "the preeminent voice of biblical scholarship to the yank public" (The Philadelphia Inquirer), elucidates the real background of this arguable booklet, uncovering its origins and the roots of dissent, violence, and department within the world's religions. Brilliantly weaving scholarship with a deep figuring out of the human must which faith speaks, Pagels has written what could be the masterwork of her special occupation.

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1, 33–37. forty eight The Gospel of fact, in NHL I, three; 17, 5–24, nine, in CGL vol. 1, 82–93, 117; additionally 18, 30–11, CGL vol. 1, 84–85 forty nine See, for instance, Paul’s first Letter to the Corinthians 15:3, and the Gospel of John 1:29. 50 This aspect can be famous through David Brakke in his fascinating contemporary publication The Gnostics: fantasy, Ritual, and variety in Early Christianity (Cambridge, MA: Harvard college Press, 2010), 102. See, too, Harry Attridge’s article on Sethian and Valentinian apocalypses, “Valentinian and Sethian Apocalyptic Traditions,” in magazine of Early Christian reviews, vol.

Three, 346–347. fifty two The Discourse at the 8th and 9th, fifty two. 6–7, NHC VI, 6, in CGL vol. three, 346–347; fifty five. 4–17, in CGL vol. three, 352–353. fifty three The Discourse at the 8th and 9th, fifty seven. 30–58. 17, NHC VI, 6, in CGL vol. three, 356–361. fifty four The Discourse at the 8th and 9th, fifty nine. 24–61. 15, NHC VI, 6, in CGL vol. three, 362–367. fifty five Allogenes, fifty two. 8–12, NHC XI, three, in CGL vol. five, 206–207. For the sake of consistency, I proceed to quote the textual content and translation in Robinson’s The Coptic Gnostic Library; see additionally the wonderful textual content and translation, with statement and creation, by means of King, Revelation of the Unknowable God.

But John’s booklet of Revelation appeals not just to worry but in addition to pray. As John tells how the chaotic occasions of the area are eventually set correct by way of divine judgment, those that have interaction his visions usually see them providing meaning—moral meaning—in instances of soreness or it sounds as if random disaster. Many poets, artists, and preachers who have interaction those prophecies declare to have present in them the promise, famously repeated through Martin Luther King Jr. , that “the arc of the ethical universe is lengthy, however it bends towards justice.

John provides: I observed within the correct hand of the single seated at the throne a scroll … sealed with seven seals, and that i observed a effective angel proclaiming with a noisy voice, “Who is necessary to open the scroll and holiday its seals? ”45 This sacred scroll unearths God’s divine plan—“what needs to happen after this. ” listening to that “no one in heaven, or in the world, or lower than the earth, was once capable of open the scroll, or investigate it,” John says, “I started to weep bitterly. ” yet one among God’s servants reassures him: “Do no longer weep.

Minneapolis: castle Press, 1998), in particular her article “Apocalypsis and Propheteia: Revelation within the Context of Early Christian Prophecy,” 133–158. See additionally Brian ok. Blount, “The Witness of lively Resistance: The Ethics of Revelation in African American Perspective,” in David Rhoads, From each humans and kingdom: The ebook of Revelation in Intercultural viewpoint (Minneapolis: citadel Press, 2005), 1–27, and likewise his lately released statement, Revelation (Louisville: John Knox Press, 2009).

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