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A Commentary on the Revelation of John Paperback – January 10, 1972

4.4 out of 5 stars 18 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

In this widely praised exposition of Revelation, George Eldon Ladd treats the Apocalypse as a true prophecy--one that reflects the situation of the church when the book was written as well as the situation the church will face at the time of the consummation of God's redemptive plan.

About the Author

George Eldon Ladd (1911–1982) was professor of New Testament exegesis and theology at Fuller Theological Seminary, Pasadena, California. His numerous books include The New Testament and Criticism, A Commentary on the Revelation of John, and T
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 308 pages
  • Publisher: Eerdmans (January 10, 1972)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 9780802816849
  • ISBN-13: 978-0802816849
  • ASIN: 0802816843
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.8 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #200,932 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
George Eldon Ladd has written a highly informative and readable overview of Revelations in the form of a verse-by-verse commentary. While Ladd presents his understanding of Revelations from a non-dispensationalist premillenialist (and post-tribulationalist) position, there is no trace of polemics in his discussion of alternate interpretations of particular verses, or of the philosophies underlying different readings of the book as a whole.
The book opens with a brief introduction to the authorship, date, and setting of Revelations, then proceeds with a discussion of four possible methods of interpretation-preterist, historical, idealist, and futurist. While he describes his understanding as "a blending of the preterist and the futurist methods", those who consider themselves preterists might be surprised at Ladd's definition of preterism. Ladd describes preterism as the view that apocalyptic literature contains "tracts for hard times", but no prophecy, and that the apparent prophecies of Revelations neither were fulfilled, nor will be. Given this definition, it is difficult to understand why Ladd describes himself as a preterist-futurist in his understanding of Revelations. From his own definitions, it would be easier to see him as an idealist-futurist.
Following the introductory chapter, Ladd proceeds directly to a verse-by-verse commentary of Revelations. I am not usually fond of this format in theological works, but nevertheless found this book very stimulating. Clearly well versed in Greek and Hebrew, Ladd goes into depth on many specifics of theology contained in Revelations.
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This is one of the better verse by verse commentaries on Revelation. It is very readable making it suitable for the layman and there is sufficient information to make it a good introduction for the student. He assumes the traditional late date and uses a mixture of the preterist and futurist interpretation in which the beast is both Rome and the eschatological Antichrist. He sees Revelation as a prophecy about the destiny of the church, the 144,000 being the church, although he sees the two witnesses as two eschatological prophets rather than the church. There is little or no Greek and footnotes are kept to a minimum.

Note: Among 7 recent scholarly commentaries on Revelation Ladd is the 14th most cited author.
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A helpful commentary. Historic premillennial. Ladd was bit dismissive of dispensationalists, even calling them "extreme futurists." C'mon!
But, I was very helped by his insights and arguments, especially because he had a good balance between digging into details and not losing sight of the whole.
It did seem a bit dry at times and could have used some more application/devotion, but perhaps that was beyond Ladd's purpose.
Even though it was published in 1972, it was a very relevant mid-level commentary.
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This is a reasonably short and easy to read commentary on Revelation, with some but not much technical/linguistic material. He spends some time reviewing alternative interpretations, but generally focuses on historical premillennial interpretation. He treats the Bible as the authoritative Word of God while still viewing much of the material in Revelation as symbolic. Generally a very good commentary.
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This book is considered a classic on post-tribulation premill eschatology.

It is a verse by verse commentary which makes the commentary easy to refer to when you need clarification on certain passages. This is much easier to use compared to other commentaries that are arranged in themes or by whole chapters... where you might need to read 20 pages only to find that what you are asking is not even dealt with in the book.

The book also has numerous diagrams that makes difficult concepts easy to grasp. E.g. the kingdom of God, the now and the not yet, etc.
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Format: Kindle Edition
Though I occasionally disagreed with Dr. Ladd's interpretation, I was always impressed with the quality of his work. I often agreed with him, and I plainly adopted his view of the fifth and sixth trumpets. He regularly guided me through difficult passages, some of which bothered me for decades. How could dogs be outside the city? I know I will refer back to this book again and again.
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This book does not address much of the latest scholarship. Although I love the writings of Ladd and his book "The Blessed Hope" changed my worldview forever, I would recommend more recent scholarship. Try David Sliker's "End Times Simplified" if you are an Apostolic Premillenialist or Ken Gentry's "The Day Jerusalem Fell" if you are a Preterist.
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Three things about this book appealed to me. First, he had a unique discussion of the seals as being prepatory for the tribulation, but not a part of it. He reasons that they cannot be a part of the tribulation if the book has not been opened (unsealed) yet. He believes that the seals are all discriptions of the course of this present age. The problem with this view is that the trumpets and vials are all part of the seventh seal. Second, Ladd addresses translation and textual problems in the KJV. This is nowhere as important as in Rev. 4-5 with regards to the 24 elders. If the KJV is right, then the pretrib position is given great support. If the critical texts and modern translations are right, then posttrib seems more reasonable. Third, Ladd provides for historic premillennialism a true eschatology of victory. He speaks of the martyrs, the courageous advance of the gospel around the world -- all a part of apostolic and historic premillennialism. A very good, sane, and sound book.
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