Friday, June 13, 2008

ESV Study Bible: Introduction to the Book of Revelation

Crossway had now uploaded the Introduction to the Book of Revelation (8 MB PDF) from the ESV Study Bible.

In the OT, there are a number of essays introducing the various types of literature: Pentateuch (Gordon Wenham); Historical Books (David Howard); Poetic and Wisdom Literature (David Reimer); Prophetic Books (Paul House). The same is true in the NT: The Gospels and Acts (Darrell Bock) and The Epistles (Tom Schreiner). Instead of having a separate NT essay on interpreting apocalyptic literature (which would apply to only one book in the NT), we expanded the Introduction to Revelation to include greater discussion about genre and the various approaches to this complex book.

Here are the various things included in this intro:
  • Author and Title
  • Date
  • Genre
  • Theme
  • Purpose, Occasion, and Background
  • History of Salvation Summary
  • Timeline (a background timeline, not timeline of the events in the book)
  • Key Themes
  • Literary Features (by Leland Ryken)
  • Schools of Interpretation (historicism, futurism, preterism, idealism, mixed)
  • Millennial Views (premillennialism, postmillennialism, amillennialism
  • Full-color map of the setting of the book (seven churches of Asia)
  • Structure and Outline
Also included are a few pages from chapters 1 and 2 to give you a sense of the font size, layout, etc. On p. 13 there is a chart mapping the various elements in the edict-letter from Christ to his seven churches.

It may be helpful to give a quick explanation regarding the different types of notes and how they work with the outline.

For example, if you look at the outline (p. 10), here are the first two entries:

Then if you go to the first few notes (p. 11), you'll see that there are three different types of notes.

Corresponding to the first point of the outline is a summary note for the prologue (vv. 1-8) in a shaded box:

The next note, with just the section title shaded, is a summary of the second point of the outline:

The third type of note, then, looks at the individual verses within those sections:

A couple of other things to note: (1) the 33% pre-order discount ends this Sunday, June 15; (2) pastors and churches leaders can email to receive free informational brochures to provide to their church or ministry (while supplies last; U.S. residents only).