Book Reviews -- By: Anonymous

Journal: Emmaus Journal
Volume: EMJ 12:1 (Summer 2003)
Article: Book Reviews
Author: Anonymous

Book Reviews

Mark R. Stevenson

The Seven Last Things: An Exposition of Revelation 19–21
By David J. MacLeod, Dubuque: Emmaus College Press, 2003, 277 pages, paper. $12.95.

The “last things” Dr. MacLeod has in mind are not the four last things of medieval theology before the Reformation awakened biblical theology — death, judgment (or purgatory), heaven, and hell — but the “seven last things” of biblical revelation about the future of the human race and the consummation of history. In a big volume like the Bible, whose first book is named Beginning [Genesis], one would expect to find the last things in the last book, perhaps in the last chapters. And that is where the author finds them, in the last four chapters of the Book of Revelation.

The Second Coming of Christ, 19:11–16
The Defeat of Antichrist, 19:17–21
The Binding of Satan, 20:1–3
The Millennial Kingdom of Christ, 20:4–6
The Release of Satan and Man’s Final Rebellion, 20:7–10
The Last Judgment and the End of the World, 20:11–15
The New Heaven and the New Earth, 21:1–8

MacLeod’s treatment is, as the title claims, an exposition not a commentary. His chief goal is quite obviously to discover the meaning of John’s successive visions — the voice from heaven and the brief discourses of the revealing angel — and to expound it to the reader. Though he brings a seasoned scholarship to the task, the author does not get lost in details of Greek grammar or scholarly exchange. He has the ordinary reader in focus. For example, in relating the rather strange fact that Jesus Christ’s Church is called “The Lamb’s bride or ‘wife’” these lines appear: “Over the years I have performed a number of weddings, and I find it to be a rather nerve-wracking responsibility. I shouldn’t worry, however,

because no one is there to see me, nor are they there to see the poor young fellow next to me in the rented tux. They are there to see the bride” (p. 250).

Each chapter ends with what Paul might have called an “exhortation” (1 Tim. 4:13) to the reader, demanding such repentance, faith, and reformation as necessary to enter into “the joy of thy Lord” at the time ...

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