Trinitarian theology within the book of Revelation is not at first sight easily recognisable amongst the plethora of images and prophecies that are recorded. The beauty of John’s theology is that the Trinity is deeply embedded in the text so that the reader must dissect the book in order to glimpse the theological beauty that is present. This essay will seek to explore the threads of the Holy Trinity that appear in the book of Revelation by looking at the characteristics of God, the specific Christology of John and the role of the Holy Spirit in the book of Revelation. In looking at each of these three areas as distinct yet overlapping threads I hope to give a succinct and scholastic Trinitarian theology of Revelation.
Characteristics of God in Revelation
According to Woodman, “the presence of God permeates the whole of the book of Revelation…God also features as a character within the narrative…God is presented as the one who lies behind the vision that Jesus communicates to John.” The vision Woodman speaks of originates in the very first verse of the book, “The revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave him (emphasis mine).” God is both behind the book as the vision giver, in the book as a character and within the whole narrative as a permeating figure. So, as I look at the characteristics of God it is important to digest this disclaimer that God is in fact in all of the book in some way, shape or form. It is however possible to give three groupings that may help in considering who God is within Revelation, these are:
I. How God is titled e.g. The Almighty, The Alpha and the Omega
II. How God is connected with things e.g. the temple of God
III. God’s being and attributes e.g. how God speaks, his power a...
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...ook of Revelation is not a black and white theological work, but a pastoral and visionary book.
Aune, David E. “God and Time in the Apocalypse of John” in Apocalypticism, Prophecy and Magic in Early Christianity: Collected Essays. Tubingen: Mohr Siebeck, 2006.
Bauckham, Richard. The Theology of the Book of Revelation. Cambridge: CUP, 1993.
Carrell, Peter R. BIBX 224, Reading Revelation Course Reader. 2011
Carrell, Peter R. Jesus and the Angels: Angelology and the Christology of the Apocalypse of John. Cambridge, CUP, 1997.
Johns, Loren L. The Lamb Christology of the Apocalypse of John. Tubingen: Mohr Siebeck, 2003.
New Revised Standard Version bible, Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1989.
Waddell, Robby. The Spirit of the book of Revelation. Dorset: Deo Publishing, 2006.
Woodman, Simon. The Book of Revelation. London: SCM Press, 2008.
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