Monday, June 12, 2017

The Book of Revelation: Hope in the Midst of Persecution (Liguori Publications)

The Book of Revelation is one of the most controversial and argued about books in the whole Bible. Some people believe they can watch the news on TV and read the book of Revelation and somehow they will always sync up. Before I converted to Catholicism, I used to believe this. Since my conversion, I have a new respect and understanding for the book of Revelation, and I have enjoyed reading different commentaries and books on the subject. One such book is entitled The Book of Revelation: Hope in the Midst of Persecution.

The Book of Revelation: Hope in the Midst of Persecution is the last (sequentially) in the Liguori Catholic Bible Study series. The book starts with a description of what Lectio Divina is and how to practice it. This leads to an explanation on how to use this book, both individual and group study. The last bit of introductory material gives us information on the book of Revelation - how it was a coded message for persecuted Christians, characteristics of apocalyptic literature, and characteristics of Revelation. Then, we finally dive into the meat of the book, which is divided into the following lessons:

1. Exile on Patmos
2. The Seven Churches of Asia
3. The Seven Seals
4. The Bitter Scroll
5. The Dragon and the Beasts
6. The New Creation

The book provides a nice introduction to Revelation. It doesn't go super-deep, as most of the individual lessons cover two to four chapters each. However, the study does a nice job of putting the book in its proper context. Revelation was not written for the future generations as a prediction of the end times. No, it was written as a message of hope for persecuted Christians, both in the early Church and future generation. That is what makes this book of the Bible timeless. Persecution is and always has been a key component of Christianity, so all generations of Christians need a message of hope. I didn't get a chance to try this book with a small group, but individually I found it edifying and would recommend it to you, if you would like to read the book of Revelation through the lens of the Church.

This book was provided to me by Liguori Publications in exchange for an honest review.