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Revelation 17–22 (Word Biblical Commentary, Volume 52c | WBC)

, 1998
ISBN: 9781418504069



An advocate of source criticism and an expert in early Christian prophecy, David Aune examines the full range of secular and biblical literature in search of possible sources for the striking literary devices in Revelation—over three volumes and more than 1,500 pages. His mastery of an incredibly broad range of ancient writings enables him to compare every pericope of Revelation to the literary traditions of the ages that preceded its writing, and thus to evaluate the possible sources for the forms John employed to write his vision. Aune’s detailed introductory comments scrutinize the entire expanse of this mysterious book, providing a monumental treatment of Revelation’s textual history. He provides an expanded outline of all twenty-two chapters and focuses on the implications for the book of Revelation in such matters as:

  • the use of chronological eschatological visions
  • the recurring sets of sevens
  • the paired angelic revelations beginning in 17:1 and 21:9
  • the scenes in the heavenly throne room with their hymns
  • possible connections between the scrolls in chapters 5 and 10

The Word Biblical Commentary delivers the best in biblical scholarship, from the leading scholars of our day who share a commitment to Scripture as divine revelation. This series emphasizes a thorough analysis of textual, linguistic, structural, and theological evidence. The result is judicious and balanced insight into the meanings of the text in the framework of biblical theology. These widely acclaimed commentaries serve as exceptional resources for the professional theologian and instructor, the seminary or university student, the working minister, and everyone concerned with building theological understanding from a solid base of biblical scholarship.

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Top Highlights

“burning of a besieged city following its capture was a typical act of retribution in the ancient world (Jer 34:22).” (Page 996)

“This idea is based on the supposition that a transformation of creation is necessary so that the perfect life of the eternal kingdom will be set within a perfect environment.” (Page 1133)

“In some texts that appear to refer to the resurrection of the righteous, it is not always clear whether the resurrection of the body or the immortality of the soul is intended (e.g., Pss. Sol. 3:12; Matt 25:46; Rom 2:5). Schweitzer argued that Jesus and the book of Daniel placed the resurrection at the beginning of the messianic kingdom, while apocalypses such as 4 Ezra and 2 Apocalypse of Baruch placed it at the end (Paul, 88). Paul, he claimed, joined these two conceptions by supposing that there would be two resurrections (Paul, 93–97), and it is precisely this harmonizing conception that was later incorporated into Rev 20:4–6.” (Page 1091)

“The phenomenon of ‘going astray’ (often connected with the metaphor of sheep) occurs because of external influence combined with ignorance (1QS 3:21; 1QH 2:14–16; 4:16–17) or as a consequence of internal desires and impulses (CD 3:4, 14). This is extremely important from a theological perspective, for the notion of deception presupposes that a person or group previously held the correct views or behaved in the appropriate manner until they were tricked or deceived and in consequence led astray. This purpose clause is an example of the author’s insertion of an explanatory comment into a vision narration. Obviously the motivation of the angel who has descended from heaven cannot be presented in the vision itself.” (Page 1083)

  • Title: Word Biblical Commentary, Volume 52C: Revelation 17–22
  • Author: David E. Aune
  • Series: Word Biblical Commentary
  • Volume: 52C
  • Publisher: Word
  • Print Publication Date: 1998
  • Logos Release Date: 2002
  • Pages: 592
  • Era: era:contemporary
  • Language: English
  • Resources: 1
  • Format: Digital › Logos Research Edition
  • Subjects: Bible › Commentaries--Collected works; Bible. N.T. Revelation › Commentaries
  • ISBNs: 9781418504069, 1418504068
  • Resource ID: LLS:29.71.4
  • Resource Type: Bible Commentary
  • Metadata Last Updated: 2022-09-28T20:04:51Z

David E. Aune is Walter Professor of New Testament and Christian Origins at the University of Notre Dame. In 2012 he was named the honorary president for life of the Chicago Society of Biblical research. He is the author of The New Testament in Its Literary Environment, Prophecy in Early Christianity and the Ancient Mediterranean World, and Apocalypticism, Prophecy, and Magic in Early Christianity: Collected Essays.


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