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A New Heaven and a New Earth: Reclaiming Biblical Eschatology

ISBN: 9781441221049

Digital Logos Edition

Logos Editions are fully connected to your library and Bible study tools.



In recent years, more and more Christians have come to appreciate the Bible’s teaching that the ultimate blessed hope for the believer is not an otherworldly heaven; instead, it is full-bodied participation in a new heaven and a new earth brought into fullness through the coming of God’s kingdom. Drawing on the full sweep of the biblical narrative, J. Richard Middleton unpacks key Old Testament and New Testament texts to make a case for the new earth as the appropriate Christian hope. He suggests its ethical and ecclesial implications, exploring the difference a holistic eschatology can make for living in a broken world.

In the Logos edition, this volume is enhanced by amazing functionality. Important terms link to dictionaries, encyclopedias, and a wealth of other resources in your digital library. Perform powerful searches to find exactly what you’re looking for. Take the discussion with you using tablet and mobile apps. With Logos Bible Software, the most efficient and comprehensive research tools are in one place, so you get the most out of your study.

Want more biblically based studies on eschatology? Check out Select Works of William J. Dumbrell on Eschatology (2 vols.).

Resource Experts
  • Draws on both the Old and New Testaments
  • Juxtaposes the broader biblical narrative with eschatological pericopes
  • Examines the ethical implications of God’s final judgment
  • From Creation to Eschaton
    • Why Are We Here? Being Human as Sacred Calling
    • The Plot of the Biblical Story
  • Holistic Salvation in the Old Testament
    • The Exodus as Paradigm of Salvation
    • Earthly Flourishing in Law, Wisdom, and Prophecy
    • The Coming of God in Judgment and Salvation
  • The New Testament’s Vision of Cosmic Renewal
    • Resurrection and the Restoration of Rule
    • The Redemption of All Things
  • Problem Texts for Holistic Eschatology
    • Cosmic Destruction at Christ’s Return?
    • The Role of Heaven in Biblical Eschatology
  • The Ethics of the Kingdom
    • The Good News at Nazareth
    • The Challenge of the Kingdom

Top Highlights

“The Old Testament does not spiritualize salvation, but rather understands it as God’s deliverance of people and land from all that destroys life and the consequent restoration of people and land to flourishing.” (Page 25)

“Most contemporary Christians tend to live with an unresolved tension between a belief in the resurrection of the body and an immaterial heaven as final destiny.” (Page 12)

“I came to the startling realization that the Bible nowhere claims that ‘heaven’ is the final home of the redeemed. Although there are many New Testament texts that Christians often read as if they teach a heavenly destiny, the texts do not actually say this. Rather, the Bible consistently anticipates the redemption of the entire created order, a motif that fits very well with the Christian hope of the resurrection, which Paul calls ‘the redemption of our bodies’ (Rom. 8:23).” (Page 14)

“A good starting point is that the Old Testament does not place any substantial hope in the afterlife; the dead do not have access to God in the grave or Sheol. Rather, God’s purposes for blessing and shalom are expected for the faithful in this life, in the midst of history.” (Pages 24–25)

“Second, worship, when rightly understood, is not specific to humans. Rather, all creatures in heaven and on earth are called to worship God.” (Page 40)

Rooted in Scripture, chock-full of insight, clearly and fetchingly written, A New Heaven and a New Earth winsomely presents the biblical story of holistic salvation. Over against the all-too-common eschatology of heavenly rapture and earthly destruction, Richard Middleton’s new book reclaims the scriptural vision of cosmic renewal.

Steven Bouma-Prediger, professor of religion, Hope College; author, For the Beauty of the Earth

This volume is a superb theological examination of a key biblical theme that is all too often neglected in academic circles. Ranging widely across Old Testament and New Testament texts, with careful attention to the history of Christian interpretation on this issue, Middleton presents a very thoughtful treatment that deserves wide attention.

Terence E. Fretheim, emeritus Elva B. Lovell Professor of Old Testament, Luther Seminary

Richard Middleton is talking about a revolution! Why should Christians settle for the anemic goal of eternity spent in heaven when the Bible’s robust vision is one of a resurrected humanity on the new earth? Set your imagination free from the chains of other-worldly dualism, and enter into the brilliant and fascinating world of the biblical story, where the vision of all things redeemed breathes new life into our discipleship.

—Sylvia Keesmaat, adjunct professor of biblical studies, Trinity College, University of Toronto

J. Richard Middleton is Professor of Biblical Worldview and Exegesis at Northeastern Seminary, located on the campus of Roberts Wesleyan College in Rochester, NY. He also serves as adjunct professor of Old Testament at the Caribbean Graduate School of Theology in Kingston, Jamaica. He served as president of the Canadian Evangelical Theological Association from 2011 to 2014.


4 ratings

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  1. Dakota Sorenson
  2. Cody Henley

    Cody Henley


  3. DrGregWaddell



    With most books of theology that I have read, I feel like the author is working to fit the biblical text into a pre-conceived framework. That is not the feeling I got at all from this book; from beginning to end, one senses that the author is genuinely wrestling with the text of the Scriptures, trying to understand it in its original intent as it would have been understood by those who first heard it and from within the literary and historical context within which it was written, namely the Old Testament. This book is a gem; maybe the best book I have ever read on eschatology. It opened up many windows and allowed light to shine into many rooms that were formerly in shadow for me. I loved the chapter where the author shows the structural logic of the entire biblical story. Grasping this big picture view of the Bible is so helpful when it comes time to look at the smaller passages relating to the concerns of eschatology. I appreciated also the fact that this author did not shy away from dealing head-on with many of the passages that, at first glance, seem to contradict his main premises (This was something strangely missing from N. T. Wright's, "Surprised by Hope"). The church has been for centuries plagued with Platonic dualism. It is high time that the church (regardless of denomination) proclaim its severance from Plato and that we begin to take seriously what the Bible actually says about the kingdom of God, salvation, resurrection, and cosmic redemption. This book will definitely contribute to that transformation.
  4. Stephen Williams