New Book on Revelation by Dr Pieter Lalleman

Dr Pieter LallemanDr Pieter Lalleman, Tutor in Biblical Studies at Spurgeons College in London, has written 10 studies on Book of the Revelation. Pieter writes:

The Book of Revelation is not as inscrutable as many think.  I have written a series of ten studies on the more accessible parts of Revelation, with special attention to the connections of these passages with the Old Testament.

The Lion and the Lamb by Pieter LallemanI do address the question of the situation of the first readers, but my book has no scholarly pretensions.  It is meant for use in church groups, although it will of course also benefit individual readers.  It contains questions for reflection and discussion which help to see how relevant John’s message – which is Jesus’s message – is for today’s church.  Whatever the Book may say about the future, it has enormous relevance for us!  More details and the option to order a copy here.

The publishers description reads:

The book of Revelation is first and foremost a letter addressed to seven churches in Asia Minor (modern day Turkey). Like any normal letter the book contains references to the situation of the readers. As later readers we look over the shoulders of the original readers into a correspondence which initially was not directed to us.

Yet Revelation is also a prophetic book. John himself makes this claim in 1:3 and 22:7, 10, 18 and 19; in 10:11 his work is called prophesying. But what is prophecy in the Bible? People such as Elijah, Isaiah and Jeremiah were messengers of God who spoke his word to their contemporaries. God gave them spiritual insight into their time so that they could shine God’s light on it. They knew God’s precepts and applied these to the situation. Prophets warned people if they were not living as God wanted, but on the other hand they encouraged positive developments. Prophets pointed people to the consequences of their behaviour and in that context they also spoke about the future.

Jewish and Christian prophecy is thus not primarily a form of prediction of the future. It was first and foremost relevant for those who were being addressed; it confronted them with God’s opinion of their situation, with his hopes, his promises, and sometimes also with his judgement in case they would not listen. But when they repented, God adapted his plans, as we see in the book of Jonah. We will approach Revelation in the same way in which we handle all prophecy: by asking what kind of situation is in view and what was expected of the first hearers. Subsequently we will raise the question how this might be relevant to us in the twenty-first century.

Revelation is a letter and a prophecy, but it is also an apocalyptic book. The Greek word for ‘revelation’ in 1:1 is ‘apocalypse’. We often use this word in such expressions as ‘an apocalyptic event’, but we must be careful that our modern language does not hinder our understanding of the Bible. Apocalyptic texts are books which claim to contain revelations about the heavenly world and/or about the future, but not necessarily about disasters. And they challenge us to check our behaviour.

The studies in this book discuss the more readily accessible parts of Revelation, with special attention to the connections of these passages with the Old Testament.

Dr Lalleman is available for interviews about his book and can be contacted via Spurgeon’s College.

Blunt’s Undesigned Coincidences on-line

J.J. Blunt: Undesigned Coincidences
J.J. Blunt: Undesigned Coincidences

J.J. Blunt’s classic work Undesigned Coincidences in the Writings of the Old and New Testament, an Argument of Their Veracity is now available on-line in PDF.

Click here to download.

” When I first read through the Gospels forensically, comparing those places where two or more gospels writers were describing the same event, I was immediately struck by the inadvertent support that each writer provided for the other…. When one gospel eyewitness described an event and left out a detail that raised a question, this question was unintentionally answered by another gospel writer (who, by the way, often left out a detail that was provided by the first gospel writer)….

As someone new to the Bible, I began to investigate whether or not anyone else had observed this phenomenon and found that a professor of divinity name J.J.Blunt wrote a book in 1847 entitled Undesigned Coincidences… This was one of the  first books about the Bible I ever purchased. In his section related to the Gospels and the Boo of Acts, Blunt identified the very same inadvertent parallel passages I discovered when examining the Gospels forensically. Blunt described the phenomenon as a series of “undesigned coincidences” and identified over forty locations in the New Testament where this feature of unintentional eyewitness support could be seen on the pages of Scripture. “

J. Warner Wallace, Cold Case Christianity. A homicide Detective Investigates the Claims of the Gospels. Colorado Springs, CO:  David C. Cook, 2013. pp.184-185.

With such a recommendation I am very pleased to be able to make this book available.

New Testament Interpretation: Essays on Principles and Methods

Essays on New Testament Interpretation
Essays on New Testament Interpretation

In 1977 Howard Marshall edited a collection of essays on New Testament interpretation contributed by some of the best Evangelical scholars in the UK, many of whom have since gone to their reward, including Marshall himself. The volume has proved to be of enduring value to students, particularly F.F Bruce’s masterful summary of the history of New Testament study. All of the essays are available for free download, thanks to the kind permission of Paternoster Press. Click on the individual articles to download.

I. Howard Marshall, ed. New Testament Interpretation: Essays on Principles and Methods. Carlisle: The Paternoster Press, 1977, revised 1979, 1985. Pbk. pp.406.

Contents

Editor’s Foreword

Introduction – I. Howard Marshall

Part I – The Background To Interpretation II

The History of New Testament Study – F.F. Bruce

Presuppositions in New Testament Criticism – Graham N. Stanton

Part II – The Use of Critical Methods in Interpretation

Semantics and New Testament Interpretation – Anthony C. Thiselton

Questions of Introduction – Donald Guthrie

The Religious Background – John W. Drane

Historical Criticism – I. Howard Marshall

Source Criticism – David Wenham

Form Criticism – Stephen H. Travis

Tradition History – David R. Catchpole

Redaction Criticism – Stephen S. Smalley

Part III – The Task of Exegesis XII

How the New Testament Uses the Old – E. Earle Ellis

Approaches To New Testament Exegesis – Ralph P. Martin

Exegesis in Practice: Two Examples – R.T. France

Demythologising – The Problem of Myth in the New Testament – James D.G. Dunn

The New Hermeneutic – Anthony C. Thiselton

The Authority of the New Testament – Robin Nixon

Expounding the New Testament – John Goldingay

Bibliography

Indexes