Revelation to John


Revelation to John

also called  Book of Revelation , or  Apocalypse of John 

      last book of the New Testament. It is the only book of the New Testament classified as apocalyptic literature rather than didactic or historical, indicating thereby its extensive use of visions, symbols, and allegory, especially in connection with future events. Revelation to John appears to be a collection of separate units composed by unknown authors who lived during the last quarter of the 1st century, though it purports to have been written by John, “the beloved disciple” of Jesus, at Patmos, in the Aegean Sea.

      The book comprises two main parts, the first of which (chapters 2–3) contains moral admonitions (but no visions or symbolism) in individual letters addressed to the seven Christian churches of Asia Minor. In the second part (chapters 4–22:5), visions, allegories, and symbols (to a great extent unexplained) so pervade the text that exegetes necessarily differ in their interpretations. Many scholars, however, agree that Revelation is not simply an abstract spiritual allegory divorced from historical events, nor merely a prophecy concerning the final upheaval at the end of the world, couched in obscure language. Rather, it deals with a contemporary crisis of faith, probably brought on by Roman persecutions. Christians are consequently exhorted to remain steadfast in their faith and to hold firmly to the hope that God will ultimately be victorious over his (and their) enemies. Because such a view presents current problems in an eschatological context, the message of Revelation also becomes relevant to future generations of Christians who, Christ forewarned, would likewise suffer persecution. The victory of God over Satan (in this case, the perseverance of Christians in the face of Roman persecution) typifies similar victories over evil in ages still to come and God's final victory at the end of time.

      Although Christ is clearly the central figure of Revelation, an understanding of the text presupposes familiarity with Old Testament language and concepts, especially those taken from the books of Daniel and Ezekiel. The author uses the number seven, for example, in a symbolic sense to signify “totality” or “perfection.” References to “a thousand years” (chapter 20) have led some to expect that the final victory over evil will come after the completion of some millennium.

* * *


Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Revelation, book of (the Revelation to John) — Also known as the Apocalypse [[➝ apocalypse]] (Greek = ‘revelation’), a similar kind of writing to the OT book of Daniel. From early in the 2nd cent. it was ascribed to John the Apostle, thought also to be the author of the fourth gospel, but… …   Dictionary of the Bible

  • Revelation to John, the — See Revelation, book of …   Dictionary of the Bible

  • John of Patmos — is the name given to the author of the Book of Revelation (or Book of the Apocalypse) in the New Testament. According to the text of Revelation, the author, who gives his name as John, is living in exile on the Greek island of Patmos. In… …   Wikipedia

  • John the Apostle, Saint — or St. John the Evangelist or St. John the Divine flourished 1st century AD One of the original Twelve Apostles of Jesus, traditionally credited with writing the fourth Gospel and three New Testament epistles. The book of Revelation was also… …   Universalium

  • Revelation — noun A book of the New Testament of the Bible, . Syn: Apocalypse, Apocalypse of John, Book of Revelation, Revelation of St. John the Divine, Revelation to John See Also: Rev …   Wiktionary

  • John the Divine — noun (New Testament) disciple of Jesus; traditionally said to be the author of the 4th Gospel and three epistles and the book of Revelation • Syn: ↑John, ↑Saint John, ↑St. John, ↑Saint John the Apostle, ↑St. John the Apostle, ↑John the Evangelist …   Useful english dictionary

  • John the Evangelist — noun (New Testament) disciple of Jesus; traditionally said to be the author of the 4th Gospel and three epistles and the book of Revelation • Syn: ↑John, ↑Saint John, ↑St. John, ↑Saint John the Apostle, ↑St. John the Apostle, ↑John the Divine …   Useful english dictionary

  • John Evangelist, Saint —    Commemorated on the second day after Christmas, December 27th. St. John was the son of Zebedee and Salome and brother of St. James the Great. The sons of Zebedee were, doubtless, among the first called of our Lord s disciples and St. John was… …   American Church Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • John F. Mc Arthur — John F. MacArthur, Jr. est né le 14 juin 1939 à Los Angeles en Californie. John MacArthur est un écrivain américain baptiste réformé et un ministre du culte, rendu célèbre grâce à son émission radiophonique « Grace to You ».… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • John E. Sanders — is an American evangelical Christian theologian. He currently serves as visiting professor of religion at Hendrix College. Sanders is best known for his promotion of open theism, but he has also written in defense of inclusivism. While Sanders is …   Wikipedia


Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.