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(əpŏk`əlĭps), the last book of the New Testament. It was written c.A.D. 95 on Patmos Island off the coast of Asia Minor by an exile named John, in the wake of local persecution by the Emperor Domitian (A.D. 81–96). Tradition has identified John with the disciple St. JohnJohn, Saint,
one of the Twelve Apostles, traditional author of the fourth Gospel, three letters, and the Book of Revelation (see John, Gospel according to Saint; John, letters; Revelation); it is highly unlikely, however, that all five works were written by the same author.
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, but many scholars deny such authorship. They also disagree as to whether this book has common authorship with the Gospel or with First, Second, and Third John. The book is an apocalypse, comprising visions of victory over evil and persecution and of the triumph of God and the martyrs. Its structure is deliberate, depending heavily on patterns of sevens. It consists of letters counseling and warning seven churches in Asia Minor; the opening of the seven seals on the scroll in the hand of God, four revealing the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse; the blowing of seven trumpets by angels before God's throne; the seven visions, including a seven-headed dragon (Satan) and the rising from the sea of the Beast, related to the Emperor Nero (persecutor of Christians in Rome after the great fire of A.D. 64), whose name is numerically equivalent to 666; the seven plagues; the seven-headed harlot named Babylon, representing the Roman Empire; and visions of heaven, the defeat of Satan, the judgment, the millennial reign of Christ, and the New Jerusalem. Constant allusion occurs to earlier scriptural prophecies, such as EzekielEzekiel
, prophetic book of the Bible. The book is a collection of oracles emanating from the career of the priest Ezekiel, who preached to Jews of the Babylonian captivity from 593 B.C. to 563 B.C. (according to the chronology given in the book itself in chapters 1 and 2).
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, DanielDaniel,
book of the Bible. It combines "court" tales, perhaps originating from the 6th cent. B.C., and a series of apocalyptic visions arising from the time of the Maccabean emergency (167–164 B.C.
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, and IsaiahIsaiah
, prophetic book of the Bible. It is a collection of prophecies from a 300-year period attributed to Isaiah, who may have been a priest. Some scholars argue that a long-lived "school" of Isaiah preserved his oracles and supplemented them in succeeding centuries.
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. One immediate goal of Revelation was to encourage persecuted Christians; absolute assurance of interpretation stops there. Every period of Christian history has produced variant explanations of the book's mysteries. See apocalypseapocalypse
[Gr.,=uncovering], genre represented in early Jewish and in Christian literature in which the secrets of the heavenly world or of the world to come are revealed by angelic mediation within a narrative framework.
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See studies by G. E. Ladd (1972), D. H. Lawrence (1972), G. B. Caird (1980), L. Morris (1987), A. Y. Collins (1988), J. P. M. Sweet (1990), R. Wall (1991), J. Kirsch (2006), and E. Pagels (2012).

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final book of the New Testament discussing the coming of the world’s end. [N.T.: Revelation]
Allusions—Cultural, Literary, Biblical, and Historical: A Thematic Dictionary. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.


a. God's disclosure of his own nature and his purpose for mankind, esp through the words of human intermediaries
b. something in which such a divine disclosure is contained, such as the Bible


the last book of the New Testament, containing visionary descriptions of heaven, of conflicts between good and evil, and of the end of the world. Also called: the Apocalypse, the Revelation of Saint John the Divine
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005
References in periodicals archive ?
A WORK AS CAREFULLY WRITTEN AS Political Philosophy and the Challenge of Revealed Religion deserves far more attention than a short review can bestow.
He was right, and he is right because revealed religion tells us so - two people of opposite gender.
"As a secularist I wish to see a democratic society in which the dogma of revealed religion does not determine the laws of my nation or define the public education of children.
Secondly Islam itself is a revealed religion and acknowledges the revelation given to other prophets of other religions.
Though revealed religion marks a new era in human history, it is not wholly divorced from its religious past.
Then in December 2004, the Associated Press--followed by many major broadcast, print, and online outlets--reported that scientific evidence had now convinced one of the world's leading atheists to believe in God, albeit a God of the philosophers (particularly Aristotle), not of revealed religion. Only some kind of super-intelligence, the 81-year-old Flew now maintained, could account for the origin of life and sheer complexity of the natural order.
Frost came to think that social Darwinists had misrepresented theories of creative evolution as much as "literal-minded fundamentalists who condemned" Darwin's "theory as a denial of Genesis and all revealed religion" (38).
If leadership falls to revealed religion and the denominations, then national unity eludes if it does not evaporate.
And how far were nineteenth-century missionaries, with their constructed colonial dichotomy between the truth of revealed religion and the awful errors of Hindu superstition, themselves making an awful mistake by failing to pay prime attention to groups like the Jnanins and, by stealing their thunder in the name of Christian authority, perhaps weakening them decisively?
The radicals moved off from the panentheism (everything in God; not everything is God) of Spinoza, toward atheism or a minimal deism, whereas the moderates found revealed religion to be in the main reasonable (and so, true) and believed that reason could prove the existence of a first cause; humans had complete freedom, of course, to conceptualize and relate to this first cause as either an abstract or personal force.
Some scholars thought that the application of scientific knowledge and technology should be circumscribed by what revealed religion considers proper, useful and wholesome (al-Alwani and Kamal Hassan).
Because one of the aims of the Enlightenment project was to neutralize revealed religion (a project that in Western Europe was largely successful), Christians with a memory might find themselves defensive toward precisely those elements of modernity that see a vibrant religious identity itself as a threat, without deserving the invidious epithet fundamentalist.