cover image The Hallelujah Banquet: How the End of What We Were Reveals Who We Can Be

The Hallelujah Banquet: How the End of What We Were Reveals Who We Can Be

Eugene H. Peterson. WaterBrook, $17.99 (208p) ISBN 978-1-60142-985-8

Peterson (The Message Bible), a Presbyterian minister who died in 2018, interprets the book of Revelation in this stimulating posthumous work compiled from a series of his sermons and archived commentaries. Discussing John’s letters to the seven churches, Peterson emphasizes John’s exploration of meaning and perception. Peterson shares personal memories and provides examples from scripture to catalog joy, weeping, and anger as reactions to living in the fullness of Christ. On the opposite side of the spectrum, he identifies lukewarmness as “a special fault of the successful” and urges readers to be strongly committed to Christ. He also examines how wrestling with social and political issues amounts to a “test of holiness,” using John’s letter to the citizens of the city of Thyatira as an example. Peterson argues that how Christians apply gratitude, praise, grace, and love determines how one matures. He also includes explanations of the spiritual significance of common scriptural terms, such as the words “hallelujah” and “amen,” and concludes with thought-provoking questions for reflection. By asking readers to “examine your motives” and “test your heart,” this insightful, contemplative study of Revelation will appeal to Christians who enjoy the work of N.T. Wright. (Jan.)