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

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

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Comment by Donald R Barbera on September 23, 2017 at 8:53pm
Bristian apologists have been trying your yearz as to how to insert a. Ok that came 400 years after Jesus's alledged death. They still haven't figured it out but as she makes clear that has not stopped them. For history, this is an excellent read. It plods but if you're doing serious research about the times and regional customs. This is for you. Sadly. these are the books I am compelled to read if I want to have credibility when I debate. It hurts but it helps.
Comment by Michael Penn on September 23, 2017 at 6:27am

Donald, I just love Elaine Pagels and believe she is one of the best religious historians of our time. She will put this book in its proper perspective without modern Evangelical nonsense directed at a path some claim is playing out daily before us. Some of us know that is not happening and was not prophesied. Add the fact that Revelation became a part of the modern canon around 412 AD and we again find a "god of the gaps." For the book to  be what preachers say it is today god is slow and dragging his feet. The book was reluctantly accepted almost 400 years after the death of Jesus. The modern take on this book is at best proof of how religious legends are formed and made.

Comment by Donald R Barbera on September 18, 2017 at 8:49pm
Ruth--To me, this painful, but I promised I'd read it and report. It is pretty dry reading and boring but I said I'd do it. I held up my end of the deal. LOL
Comment by Ruth Anthony-Gardner on September 18, 2017 at 8:15pm

A book review of a Revelations book review? I'll pass. Too busy hurricane watching.

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