Victory Through the Lamb: A Guide to Revelation in Plain Language by Mark Wilson
Rather than proposing a series of speculations regarding events in the Book of Revelation, Professor Mark Wilson gives his readers a thorough analysis of Revelation while pointing out the main subject of the entire book, Jesus. With careful scholarship and attention to the details, Mark brings out the message, history, and theology of Revelation in a way that anyone can understand. For instance, in the opening chapter Mark points out that there were more than seven churches in Asia at the time of John’s writing, but that seven represented fullness or perfection. Further, Mark writes,
“So these Seven Churches, each with the fullness of the Holy Spirit, represent all the churches in Asia at that time. By way of application, we might say that these Seven Churches also represent types of churches that have existed during the past two millennia throughout the world. This is one of the reasons that Revelation’s message still has relevance for us today” (32).
The seven churches are a snapshot depicting historical realities in the first century but also types of churches we see today, from those that are lukewarm to those which are persecuted and receive no condemnatory words. Yet, hope was still on par for these churches in Asia Minor, even as they struggled against the surrounding culture and among themselves. Mark writes of the victory sayings in Revelation 2.10, “In Revelation 2:10 and elsewhere Jesus likewise adopts familiar athletic imagery to convey his message of hope and encouragement to those in the Seven Churches” (41).
Mark beautifully captures the vision of the new heaven and new earth in the last chapter of Revelation by looking at the history of God’s dwelling with men. Mark writes, “God had expressed his desire to live with his people since the time of Moses (Lev. 26:11-12). Yet, because of Israel’s disobedience, that hope went unrealized…now in New Jerusalem it is fulfilled (21:4)” (204-205). The inheritance of the victorious ones is realized in the New Heaven and New Earth. No longer will God be away from them but he will abide with them forevermore. This glorious picture is a fulfillment of God’s desire to live with his people, fully realized through what the Son of God has done.
You will not want to miss this book. If you are looking for a discussion regarding all the positions regarding Revelation 20 and the significance of the 1,000 years, Mark addresses this not as primary but in light of what is going on with the victors. Rather, what you find in this book is a sobering account of Revelation with much wisdom, clarity, and application.
Thanks to Weaver Book Company and Cross Focused Reviews for the copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.