series: Brazos Theological Commentary on the Bible

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The Brazos Theological Commentary on the Bible enlists leading theologians to read and interpret Scripture for today, just as the church fathers, the Reformers, and other orthodox Christians did for their times and places. This commentary, like each in the series, is designed to serve the church—providing a rich resource for preachers, teachers, students, and study groups—and demonstrate the continuing intellectual and practical viability of theological interpretation of Scripture. In this volume, Joseph Mangina offers a constructive ecclesiology for the role and mission of the church in the twenty-first century formed by a close examination of Revelation.

The general editor for the Brazos Theological Commentary on the Bible is R. R. Reno (editor, First Things). Series editors include Robert W. Jenson (Center of Theological Inquiry); Robert Louis Wilken (University of Virginia); Ephraim Radner (Wycliffe College, University of Toronto); Michael Root (Catholic University of America); and George Sumner (Episcopal Diocese of Dallas).

Volumes in the Brazos Theological Commentary on the Bible

R. R. Reno (editor, First Things) on Genesis Thomas Joseph White (Thomistic Institute at the Angelicum in Rome) on Exodus Ephraim Radner (Wycliffe College, University of Toronto) on Leviticus David L. Stubbs (Western Theological Seminary) on Numbers Telford Work (Westmont College) on Deuteronomy Paul Hinlicky (Roanoke College) on Joshua Laura A. Smit (Calvin University) and Stephen Fowl (Loyola University Maryland) on Judges & Ruth Francesca Aran Murphy (University of Notre Dame) on 1 Samuel Robert Barron (Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Los Angeles) on 2 Samuel Peter J. Leithart (Theopolis Institute for Bible, Liturgy, and Culture) on 1 & 2 Kings Peter J. Leithart (Theopolis Institute for Bible, Liturgy, and Culture) on 1 & 2 Chronicles Matthew Levering (Mundelein Seminary) on Ezra & Nehemiah Samuel Wells (St. Martin-in-the-Fields Anglican Church, London) and George Sumner (Episcopal Diocese of Dallas) on Esther & Daniel Ellen T. Charry (Princeton Theological Seminary) on Psalms 1–50 Jason Byassee (Vancouver School of Theology) on Psalms 101–150 Daniel J. Treier (Wheaton College Graduate School) on Proverbs & Ecclesiastes Paul J. Griffiths on Song of Songs Robert W. Jenson (1930–2017; Center of Theological Inquiry) on Ezekiel Phillip Cary (Eastern University) on Jonah Stanley Hauerwas (Duke Divinity School) on Matthew David Lyle Jeffrey (Baylor University) on Luke Jaroslav Pelikan (1923–2006; Yale University) on Acts Kimlyn J. Bender (Truett Theological Seminary, Baylor University) on 1 Corinthians Kathryn Greene-McCreight (The Episcopal Church at Yale) on Galatians Michael Allen (Reformed Theological Seminary, Orlando) on Ephesians George Hunsinger (Princeton Theological Seminary) on Philippians Christopher R. Seitz (Wycliffe College, University of Toronto) on Colossians Douglas Farrow (McGill University) on 1 & 2 Thessalonians Risto Saarinen (University of Helsinki) on the Pastoral Epistles with Philemon & Jude Douglas Harink (The King’s University College) on 1 & 2 Peter Joseph L. Mangina (Wycliffe College, University of Toronto) on Revelation


"Another lucidly written, theologically profound volume in what is emerging as a great commentary series. Mangina shows that Revelation is not an otherworldly book; it is a prophetic challenge and source of wisdom addressed to the church in this and every age. His learned study draws on centuries of theological thought (and also artistic interpretations), yet it is filled with fresh and often surprising insights. Mangina's work is useful--even inspiring--for contemporary theology and ministry."--Ellen F. Davis, A. R. Kearns Professor of Bible and Practical Theology, Duke University Divinity School

"Mangina leads his readers Beatrice-like through the strange topography of the Apocalypse, helping us to rediscover it as a place where heaven traffics with earth, and imaginations conspire to tell the truth of the God of the gospel. Such deft theological reading should embolden preachers in our day to proclaim John's unsettling vision for what it is--a vivid witness to Jesus Christ fit to console, admonish, and summon the church amid God's remaking of the world."--Philip Ziegler, senior lecturer in systematic theology, University of Aberdeen

"Neither a book of resentment nor a symbolic work that needs decoding, Revelation is presented here as an 'apocalyptic haggadah.' Mangina's splendid commentary offers a rich theological interpretation drawing on liturgy, hymnody, creeds, and artistic depictions that invite us not only into the book of Revelation but also into the life of its true author, the Holy Trinity."--D. Stephen Long, professor of systematic theology, Marquette University

"Joseph Mangina has sat patiently with every twist and turn in the Apocalypse. Drawing on conversation partners as diverse as Tolkien, Dylan, and Bonhoeffer, Mangina has produced a fine, rich commentary, one that not only instructs us about the Apocalypse but also urges us to listen to this vision as never before."--Beverly Roberts Gaventa, Distinguished Professor of New Testament Interpretation, Baylor University

"This well-written, literate, and illuminating commentary on a classically obscure text is at once theologically astute and ecclesiastically upbuilding--a rare combination indeed. I gladly commend it to scholars and teachers, preachers and laypeople alike."--Travis Kroeker, professor of religion, McMaster University

"In this richly rewarding commentary, Mangina keeps his eye trained on the most important question we can ask about Revelation: how is this weirdest, most beguiling biblical book about the Triune God?"--Lauren F. Winner, assistant professor of Christian spirituality, Duke Divinity School

"We already have many splendid commentaries on Revelation--do we need another one? Mangina's fine work elicits an emphatic 'yes!' His wide-ranging literary imagination and deep grounding in the apocalyptic worldview of New Testament theology has resulted in an astonishingly fresh presentation. This superb commentary will stimulate the best thinking of preachers and pastors, especially those who take a lively interest in the intersection of biblical theology and geopolitics. Highly recommended."--Fleming Rutledge, author of The Crucifixion: Understanding the Death of Jesus Christ and Not Ashamed of the Gospel

Praise for the Brazos Theological Commentary on the Bible:
"What a splendid idea! Many preachers have been longing for more commentaries that are not only exegetical but theological in the best sense: arising out of the conviction that God, through his Word, still speaks in our time. For those of us who take our copies of Martin Luther's Galatians and Karl Barth's Romans from the shelves on a regular basis, this new series in that tradition promises renewed vigor for preaching, and therefore for the one, holy, catholic, and apostolic church in our time."--Fleming Rutledge, author of The Bible and The New York Times and The Seven Last Words from the Cross

"This new series places the accent on 'theological' and reflects current interpretive ferment marked by growing resistance to the historical-critical project. It may be that scripture interpretation is too important to be left to the exegetes, and so a return to the theologians. We will wait with great anticipation for this new series, at least aware that the outcomes of interpretation are largely determined by the questions asked. It is never too late to ask better questions; with a focus on the theological tradition, this series holds the promise of asking interpretive questions that are deeply grounded in the primal claims of faith. The rich promise of the series is indicated by the stature and erudition of the commentators. Brazos has enormous promises to keep with this project, and we wait with eagerness for its appearing!"--Walter Brueggemann, Columbia Theological Seminary

"The Brazos Theological Commentary on the Bible makes a most welcome contribution to the church, the academic world, and the general public at large. By enlisting a wide range of Protestant, Catholic, and Orthodox theologians who differ on much, but who agree on the truth of the Nicene Creed, the series also represents ecumenical activity of the very best kind. It is always a daunting challenge to expound the church's sacred book both simply and deeply, but this impressive line-up of authors is very well situated for the attempt."--Mark A. Noll, University of Notre Dame

"Preachers and teachers in particular, but thoughtful Christians more generally, have long lamented the slide of biblical scholarship into hyper-specialized critical studies of ancient texts in remote historical context. It is no wonder, therefore, that the Brazos Theological Commentary is being so warmly welcomed. The outstanding array of authors, beginning with Jaroslav Pelikan's splendid commentary on the Acts of the Apostles, is, at long last, reclaiming the Bible as the book of the living community of faith that is the church."--Richard John Neuhaus, author of American Babylon: Notes of a Christian Exile

"Contemporary application of the Bible to life is the preacher's business. But no worthy contemporary application is possible without a thorough understanding of the ancient text. The Brazos Theological Commentary exists to provide an accessible authority so that the preacher's application will be a ready bandage for all the hurts of life. We who serve the pulpit want a commentary we can understand, and those who hear us expect us to give them a usable word. The Brazos Commentary offers just the right level of light to make illuminating the word the joy it was meant to be."--Calvin Miller, author of A Hunger for the Holy and Loving God Up Close

"For pastors, wanting to get at the theological heart of a text, there is some good stuff. When I am preaching, I usually try to take a peek at the Brazos volume."--Nijay K. Gupta, assistant professor of New Testament, Northeastern Seminary, Roberts Wesleyan College

The Author

  1. Joseph L. Mangina

    Joseph L. Mangina

    Joseph L. Mangina (PhD, Yale University) is professor of systematic theology at Wycliffe College, University of Toronto. He is the editor of Pro Ecclesia, serves on the Anglican-Roman Catholic dialogue commission for Canada, and is the author of two...

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"A good supplemental text. In keeping with its series, this commentary focuses on theological exposition with an eye for how the church has understood this book through the ages. For Revelation this historical awareness is especially helpful."--Ray Van Neste, Preaching

"The unique feature of the Brazos series is to have theologians provide exposition of specific biblical books. In this it follows a longstanding church tradition in which theology was drawn from Scripture and was not alien to or estranged from it. Mangina . . . provides a thoughtful and competent analysis of th[e] complex New Testament book [of Revelation]. He certainly engages biblical scholarship, but his focus is appropriately on the fundamental theological perspective of Revelation, which he sees as a radically christological focus. . . . His focus on the radical theological nature of this NT book is welcome."--Donald Senior, CP, The Bible Today

"A clear and balanced treatment of the Johannine material, written in a style that is readable and at times hortatory. . . . Mangina's work contributes positively to the study of Revelation. He highlights the teaching of John with freshness, and he does so succinctly and yet comprehensively. His book should assist any student of this exciting document to shed further light on its perpetually engaging content."--Stephen S. Smalley, Expository Times

"Few commentaries are likely to be read from cover to cover, but Mangina's stimulating volume on Revelation is surely one. Drawing on a rich variety of sources, including the best of biblical scholarship, insights from early and modern theologians, [and] the works of poets and painters, the author not only teaches about Revelation but draws the reader into its apocalyptic world from beginning to end. . . . Few commentaries bear out the message of Revelation in a more lucid way than this one. It is filled with fresh insights and can be warmly recommended to pastors and students, laypeople and scholars alike."--Daniel Johansson, Theological Book Review

"The reader will find some rich treatments of both Christology and theology (Father, Son, and Holy Spirit) throughout the exposition, and will add to one's appreciation of the depth of John's incursion into the Holy."--Walter M. Dunnett, Anglican Theological Review

"Mangina integrates ideas from biblical scholars with his formidable erudition as a theologian. . . . He offers fresh and compelling readings. . . . This commentary will prove extraordinarily helpful for public interpreters. . . . Mangina daringly connects critical interpretation and faith at levels many biblical scholars hesitate to explore. . . . A creative, passionate, and insightful commentary."--Greg Carey, Catholic Biblical Quarterly

"Mangina does not merely discuss the theology of Revelation nor does he catalog comments by theologians on various passages. He does these things, but he does more. He interacts with the history of (theological) interpretation and often provides thought-provoking analysis of the church's contemporary practice. . . . This book is not primarily exegetical, but it does provide information that will be beneficial in studying Revelation."--Joseph D. Fantin, Bibliotheca Sacra