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Reversed Thunder: The Revelation of John and the Praying Imagination Paperback – April 26, 1991


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: HarperOne; Reprint edition (April 26, 1991)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0060665033
  • ISBN-13: 978-0060665036
  • Product Dimensions: 8 x 5.3 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (41 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #59,804 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

Reflections on the Revelation of John and its meaning for our lives.

About the Author

Eugene H. Peterson, author of The Message, a bestselling translation of the Bible, is professor emeritus of spiritual theology at Regent College, British Columbia, and the author of over thirty books. He and his wife, Jan, live in Montana.


More About the Author

Peterson, now retired, was for many years James M. Houston Professor of Spiritual Theology at Regent College in Vancouver, British Columbia. He also served as founding pastor of Christ Our King Presbyterian Church in Bel Air, Maryland. In addition to his widely acclaimed paraphrase of the Bible, The Message (NavPress), he has written many other books.

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Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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This is a book worth keeping and rereading.
J. Johnson
As always Eugene Peterson captures the concepts and makes them practical.
Ion D. Spor
A fresh perspective on the Book of Revelation!
Steven A. Zwart

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

66 of 73 people found the following review helpful By NotATameLion on November 24, 2002
Format: Paperback
It never ceases to amaze me how Eugene Peterson so easily exposes the lie of what we in the West have come to call "reality." His book Answering God: The Psalms as Tools for Prayer changed my worldview and revolutionized my prayer life. This book--Reversed Thunder: The Revelation of John and the Praying Imagination, has done just as much (and more) than Answering God.
Reversed Thunder has truly awakened my imagination. It has turned how I approach the Word of God on its head (I don't even feel like I approach it anymore--it approaches me). For the first time in my life, I feel that the Bible is not just some mystic book that speaks from somewhere in the mists of the past--it is living (how many times had I heard that and given mere intellectual assent?) and speaking to me always.
Each chapter of this book is vital. Eugene Peterson has distilled the lessons of a lifetime in these pages--they are transformative. As an aside, I read Brigitte Hanhart's children's adaptation of Tolstoy's Shoemaker Martin while I was reading Reversed Thunder--the messages of these books powerfully reinforce one another (in other words: I strongly recommend reading them together).
I give Reversed Thunder my highest recommendation.
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32 of 35 people found the following review helpful By R. Schwartz on December 17, 2001
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Simply the best book I have read on Revelation. Peterson's book is about about God, the person. The focus on revelation is about the revelation of Jesus Christ. So many people get interested in everything except God, loosing themselves in symbol hunting, last day prophecies, intrigue with numbers, speculating with frenzied imaginations on times and seasons, despite Jesus' severe stricture against it. (Acts 1:7) Our salvation, our focus, is on Christ. Our timing is the looking at our present, the silence within us, God's very presence living within ourselves. The timing and sense of urgency of God is not the same as living with the sense of hurry, as it is urgent for us to look inside ourselves, use our imagination with God's Spirit and discern the revelation of Jesus Christ in others through Him and in Him in ourselves.
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20 of 21 people found the following review helpful By Drew Hall on February 18, 2006
Format: Paperback
Over the past year, Eugene Peterson has become my favorite author (along with Dietrich Bonhoeffer and John Piper). After reading Peterson's books Run With the Horses (the life of Jeremiah) and Where Your Treasure Is (the Psalms), I was eager to read more by him. I was not disappointed by this book.

Peterson sets off at the beginning to lay down the truth that the Apocalypse was not written as a treatise on "things that must soon take place," to be analyzed for chronology and fulfillment. Rather, it was written by a caring pastor guiding his people through the threat of caesar-worship. It is a book solely about the distant future, but a collection of poetic images that serve to evoke hope and order in the present churches of Ephesus. I am so grateful that Peterson emphasizes the fact that all apocalyptic is meant to be practical in the here-and-now. "Eschatology is the most pastoral of all the theological perspectives, showing how the ending impinges on the present in such ways that the truth of the gospel is verified in life 'in the middle'" (9). "There are predictive elements in some prophecy (and some in the Revelation), but they are always in service to a present message" (21).

Peterson walks through a chapter or two of the Revelation at a time, keeping in mind the three inseparable roles of John as he writes what is revealed to him: pastor, poet, and theologian. For Peterson, real theology is only seen and understood as it is worked out in our daily living; all theology is imminently practical. Just like the Apostle in his day, Peterson lives to combat the Gnostic duality that embraces the "spiritual" as something belonging to another world or sphere, and not upsetting our finely crafted lives.
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38 of 43 people found the following review helpful By Isabel on October 13, 1999
Format: Paperback
Have you become immersed in interpretations of the varied and even gross symbolisms in the Book of Revelation? Have you missed the introductory statement that it is "the revelation of Jesus Christ"? He gave His revelation, His last words, through the listening ears and the seeing eyes of His devoted friend, St. John, theologian, poet and pastor. The author of Reversed Thunder has caught the sweep and practicalities of Revelation through his insights into Jesus' last words, His ultimate words, on such subjects as the church, prayer, evil, politics, heaven. Jesus' call for us in the here and now is to worship God and to this theme we can respond, "Amen." This book invited repeated reading, always with an open Bible, time for meditation, prayerful worship. "Even so, come, Lord Jesus."
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By J. Johnson on August 9, 2005
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
If you're expecting line by line interpretation of the last book of the New Testament, do not buy this book. If you have read the Revelation of John and are wondering how to move from details to the 'big picture' this is the perfect book.

Peterson brings to high relief the major themes of the Scriptures. The chapter titles preview this: "The Last Word on Christ"; "The Last Word on the Church" and so on... Poetic, encouraging and challenging all at once. The chapters I enjoyed most were on scripture and on Christ: I reread them before I continued the book. This is a book worth keeping and rereading. Peterson's writing is much like CS Lewis', don't read this book if you have "God in a Box" brand of Christian theology. Read it if you dare.
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