Revelations is easily one of the most controversial books in the Bible because of it's phantasmagoric and hallucinatory imagery as well as its catastrophic end of the world scenarios. Elaine Pagels brings together a book that is a literary mess as well as Halloween childishness. Nevertheless, her research into its history is impeccable.
It is difficult to bring together a book, such as Revelations, that is at once illusory and delusional but some understanding is brought about by Pagels who explains the history of John of Patmos, who is believed to have written the book of Revelations. Pagels not only makes sense of the book, she also ties in the politics of the day, which is intimately tied to the Roman Empire and its ventures into Jerusalem.
With a close reading of "Revelations: Visions, Prophecy, and Politics in the Book of Revelations," Pagels makes it easy to see a plethora of prophets who seem populate every page and speculate as to Jesus intentions. Once Pagels reaches the apocalypse it is rendered in its gory writing. However, despite the CGI generated battles, Pagels makes it clear that book is in dispute to this day.
Even though the book is immaculately researched and documented because of its focus on establishing its history, the politics of the time and the various Roman and Jewish players in the suppositious tale it is This not a quick read because of its explanatory nature and the apparitious nature of the entire book.
Nevertheless, it is a valuable book for those hoping to understand the Book of Revelations and how it came about. This review hardly does the boom justice but a worthy review of Revelations: Visions, Prophecy, and Politics in the Book of Revelation: Would require more space than it is can be read in a so cooled"short" book review.
Donaldu R Barbera