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Resisting Empire: The Book of Revelation as Resistance

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Revelation speaks to the reality that we are caught in the fray of cosmic conflict. We are guilty. We’ve already been contaminated. But it’s not too late for us to exit empire and enter the kingdom. We are yet both victim and victimizer. We have healing work to do, and we must take responsibility for the ways in which we have benefited from and been complicit with the reli Revelation speaks to the reality that we are caught in the fray of cosmic conflict. We are guilty. We’ve already been contaminated. But it’s not too late for us to exit empire and enter the kingdom. We are yet both victim and victimizer. We have healing work to do, and we must take responsibility for the ways in which we have benefited from and been complicit with the religion of empire. This is the truth of Revelation. God wants to liberate us in body, heart, soul, and mind. We need rescue, and the way we read Revelation determines how we define ourselves and our communities in relation to empire and in resistance to it. Reading Revelation as Western Christians have over the past 150 years, as a book predicting the end of the world, leads us away from the book’s original intention. Let’s start over: 1. Revelation reveals how scapegoating functions within empire to define its own boundaries and contours as being over and against wicked others. 2. Revelation critiques wealth and shows that even in the first century there was prophetic critique against an economic system that was based on abundance for some, while exploiting the rest. 3. Revelation demonstrates the importance of liturgy as something that forms people into the likeness of either empire or the lamb. 4. And finally, Revelation reveals an alternative social order which becomes the center of resistance rooted in a vision of what the book describes as “the multitude,” a community without antagonism. May your hearts and imaginations be revived, made more resilient and ever more focused on the needs of the world that surrounds us. Let us stop at nothing to make space for others and amplify the voices of those who the powers and principalities wish to silence. And in the end, may you find that you have already, always, been on the inside of the multitude, surrounding the lamb of God.


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Revelation speaks to the reality that we are caught in the fray of cosmic conflict. We are guilty. We’ve already been contaminated. But it’s not too late for us to exit empire and enter the kingdom. We are yet both victim and victimizer. We have healing work to do, and we must take responsibility for the ways in which we have benefited from and been complicit with the reli Revelation speaks to the reality that we are caught in the fray of cosmic conflict. We are guilty. We’ve already been contaminated. But it’s not too late for us to exit empire and enter the kingdom. We are yet both victim and victimizer. We have healing work to do, and we must take responsibility for the ways in which we have benefited from and been complicit with the religion of empire. This is the truth of Revelation. God wants to liberate us in body, heart, soul, and mind. We need rescue, and the way we read Revelation determines how we define ourselves and our communities in relation to empire and in resistance to it. Reading Revelation as Western Christians have over the past 150 years, as a book predicting the end of the world, leads us away from the book’s original intention. Let’s start over: 1. Revelation reveals how scapegoating functions within empire to define its own boundaries and contours as being over and against wicked others. 2. Revelation critiques wealth and shows that even in the first century there was prophetic critique against an economic system that was based on abundance for some, while exploiting the rest. 3. Revelation demonstrates the importance of liturgy as something that forms people into the likeness of either empire or the lamb. 4. And finally, Revelation reveals an alternative social order which becomes the center of resistance rooted in a vision of what the book describes as “the multitude,” a community without antagonism. May your hearts and imaginations be revived, made more resilient and ever more focused on the needs of the world that surrounds us. Let us stop at nothing to make space for others and amplify the voices of those who the powers and principalities wish to silence. And in the end, may you find that you have already, always, been on the inside of the multitude, surrounding the lamb of God.

43 review for Resisting Empire: The Book of Revelation as Resistance

  1. 4 out of 5

    Kayellison

    As someone who doesn’t want to believe that the Book of Revelation is about the End Times, I was amazed that C. Wess Daniels had a different way to think about the Book of Revelation. I like how Wess calls us to think and to live what we believe. I am going to share this book with a lot of peole, but will start with my sister and brother-in-law because I know they will be glad to get a new look at the Book of Revelation. I have new hope!

  2. 5 out of 5

    Alex Long

    It provides a really good, not toxic or fallacious, way to look at the Book of Revelation. I gave it 4 stars and not 5 because for such a short book, the author repeats himself a whole lot, to the point where passages toward the end feel like they were copy&pasted from the beginning.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Mark

    A accessible and exciting way in to the Book of Revelation, particularly for those for who have some familiarity with the text and long to find something life-affirming in it. I particularly appreciated the chapter on the 'multitude'. A accessible and exciting way in to the Book of Revelation, particularly for those for who have some familiarity with the text and long to find something life-affirming in it. I particularly appreciated the chapter on the 'multitude'.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Mary

    I had the opportunity to work through this book with the author in an online class, which was a gift.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Chris Stillwell

  6. 5 out of 5

    Kathleen

  7. 4 out of 5

    Emily Anderle

  8. 5 out of 5

    Josiah

  9. 4 out of 5

    James Gallen

  10. 5 out of 5

    John Burdick

  11. 4 out of 5

    Peterson Toscano

  12. 5 out of 5

    Blake Egan

  13. 5 out of 5

    Susan M. Mings

  14. 5 out of 5

    William Morris

  15. 4 out of 5

    Rachel

  16. 5 out of 5

    Mackenzie

  17. 5 out of 5

    Josh

  18. 5 out of 5

    Daran Mitchell

  19. 4 out of 5

    Kody

  20. 5 out of 5

    Zana

  21. 5 out of 5

    Carmen

  22. 5 out of 5

    Robert

  23. 4 out of 5

    Peter Gilmore

  24. 4 out of 5

    Paula

  25. 5 out of 5

    Betsy

  26. 4 out of 5

    Joe Guada

  27. 4 out of 5

    Rashaun

  28. 4 out of 5

    Michael Jay

  29. 5 out of 5

    Randall

  30. 4 out of 5

    Johan Maurer

  31. 4 out of 5

    Bob Henry

  32. 5 out of 5

    Faith

  33. 5 out of 5

    Ryan Collins

  34. 5 out of 5

    Dylan Parsons

  35. 5 out of 5

    John Willis

  36. 4 out of 5

    Julie Baumler

  37. 4 out of 5

    Joel Reichenbach

  38. 5 out of 5

    Paul

  39. 5 out of 5

    Clint

  40. 5 out of 5

    Mark Sequeira

  41. 5 out of 5

    Matt Baker

  42. 5 out of 5

    Blesson John

  43. 5 out of 5

    Peter Barney

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