Christopher Rowland

in The Oxford Handbook of the Reception History of the Bible

Published in print January 2011 | ISBN: 9780199204540
Published online May 2011 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks in Religion and Theology


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This article considers the outline, form, and content of the Book of Revelation. The Book of Revelation, or the Apocalypse of Jesus Christ, is a collection of visions, some of which follow on from each other (e.g., chs. 5–6) while others begin a new visionary sequence (e.g., chs. 12–13). Despite the variety of the visions in the Book of Revelation, there is a discernible thread running through it. In John's initial vision of heaven God is acknowledged as creator and honoured as such. This contrasts with the world below in which humanity is in rebellion. The inexorable overcoming of that rebellion through the chaos which follows the opening of the first seal by the Lamb paves the way for the establishment of a messianic reign on earth, judgement, and ultimately heaven on earth when the God hidden from all except the visionary will be seen face to face.

Keywords: Book of Revelation; rebellion; heaven; God; Apocalypse; visions

Article.  5486 words. 

Subjects: Religion ; Christianity ; Religious Studies

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