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What Christ Thinks of the Church: An Exposition of Revelation 1-3 Paperback – October, 2003

4.6 out of 5 stars 14 customer reviews

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From the Back Cover

What does Christ think of the church? In chapters 1-3 of the Book of Revelation, Christ reveals, by praise and reproach, by warning and exhortation, what he wants his church to be like in all places and at all times.

Now in this insightful book John Stott, known worldwide for his scholarly yet accessible writing, explores these fascinating letters to seven churches of the ancient world. He helps you discover the message and many insights the letters hold for our church today.

ìMy prayer,î writes Stott, ìis that this book may help church leaders grasp where Christís priorities lie. There is much here to call us to repentance and renewal, much to humble and shame us, much to warn us of the malice of our enemy, and much to incite us to fortitude and perseverance.î

Rev. Dr. John Stott has an international ministry as a gifted preacher and biblical scholar. He lives in London, England, and is the author of many books, including Understanding the Bible and Christian Basics.

Rev. Dr. John Stott has an international ministry as a gifted preacher and biblical scholar. He lives in London, England, and is the author of many books, including Understanding the Bible. Stott is one of the most highly respected Bible expositors of our time.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 127 pages
  • Publisher: Baker Books (October 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0801064716
  • ISBN-13: 978-0801064715
  • Product Dimensions: 8.7 x 5.6 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.5 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #902,656 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
The number of books written on the final book of the Biblical canon could fill a library. Both fiction and non fiction have considered it from virtually every angle, from conspiracy theories to allegories, it's all been said. Few, however, have taken the book in a coolly logical way that makes it applicable for today and does not scare you into wanting to cut up every form of identification you own to avoid accidentally taking the mark of the beast.
Fortunately, this slim volume is the exception. Mr. Stott, a noted Biblical expositor wastes no words in addressing the beginning of Revelation. Examining each of the churches to whom Christ sent a letter, he gives the history of these places and how they might have viewed the messages, then makes them applicable to problems today.
**** After reading this, you won't know who the Anti-Christ is, nor will you know when the age will end. It is not a countdown to Armegeddon, but sound advice for how to live until then. If you are scared to read Revelation, reading this book will make it a bit easier to conquer that phobia. ****
Reviewed by Amanda Killgore
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Format: Paperback
John Stott is a model of the biblically grounded, socially engaged preacher. In all his writings, he builds a bridge "between two worlds," as the title of his textbook on preaching puts it: the world of divine revelation and the world of contemporary application. In What Christ Thinks of the Church, Stott once again performs this valuable bridge-building function with the notoriously difficult-to-interpret Revelation of John.

We sometimes forget that Revelation was not written for us, at least not first and foremost. Rather, it was written for seven churches in Roman Asia Minor: Ephesus, Smyrna, Pergamum, Thyatira, Sardis, Philadelphia, and Laodicea. It applies to us by extension because the problems these churches faced are the kind of problems we also face. But we should never try to sever Revelation from its original historical context. The seven letters to the Asian churches that Stott writes about in What Christ Thinks of the Church remind us of the historical groundedness of Revelation as a whole.

In each of these letters, Jesus Christ (portrayed as the "son of man" in Revelation 1), dictates letters to John for communication to the seven churches. The letters includes follow a predictable format: a description of Christ, a commendation of the church, a complaint against the church, and a concluding command. Stott unpacks the historical background and contemporary application to each of these elements. The primary application he derives is seven marks that ought to characterize the church:

1. Love (Ephesus)
2. Suffering (Smyrna)
3. Truth (Pergamum)
4. Holiness (Thyatira)
5. Reality, or authenticity (Sardis)
6. Opportunity, or mission (Philadelphia)
7.
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Format: Paperback
Dr Stott regains the biblical ground lost to the popular and hyped-up books presented en-masse to unwary Christians in their 'Hollywood'-style appeal.

Looking at the letters to the seven Churches, the biblical teacher, John, reviews the Apostle John's, enscripturation of the Christ's words to him on the Isle of Patmos. Reaching to the present, the 'Revelation' or 'Apocalypse' is the culmination of current world-history, and the re-appearance and long-awaited Second Coming of our Redeemer, Christ Jesus.

There were exhortationary warnings directed towards these Churches, which directly impact on ours. Stott stays true to the text and true to the context throughout.

'If this clear-sighted scrutiny of the hearts and minds of people was a characteristic of the earthly Jesus, how much more must the risen Christ know all human secrets?' p 73

A well-presented pastoral injuction to the church in the world not to become the worldly church.
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Excellent study book for our adult Sunday school class.
Readable, understandable, meaningful and memorable.
Our class comes prepared and ready to discuss the readings.
I recommend this book to those who are ready to decipher Revelations.
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As always, John Stott presents a well-balanced, sane, and thoroughly biblical exposition of the text. While there are no flashy interpretations of Christ's 7 letters, Stott gets to the heart of each message, explaining the historical significance along with helpful practical application.
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Because I respect John Stott as a wonderful and honest Bible expositor, I knew before ever reading this book that I would fully appreciate it. I was right!
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
John Stott is an amazing man of God. His insight and wisdom challenge me to grow in knowledge and understanding. We are blessed!
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