The book of Revelation is known for its amazing and at time disturbing apocalyptic imagery which has triggered many different interpretations. Some people—particularly those who have been engaged with the book more thoroughly—are intrigued by its pervasive doctrine of God, Revelation’s rich Christology, and its strong ecclesiology. However, at first glance it may appear that John’s Apocalypse has not much to say about creation. So we have to take a closer look. In addition, the question is being raised what creation means. This question relates to both, creation in the past as described in Genesis and other OT texts as well as the new creation found also in some OT texts but especially in the last chapters of Revelation. Is the creation theme in Revelation suggesting that God actually created the universe, heavenly beings, and earth and filled our planet with life as described in Scripture? Does John propose that God will physically remake this earth and its immediate environment and create paradisiacal conditions1 or should his statements be understood symbolically2 in the sense that God is somehow the creator, but he uses and oversees a process such as evolution?3 If the latter scenario was on his mind it could mean that over time life on earth would continue to improve to such an extent that conditions would be reached, which would resemble those described in Revelation 21 and 22.4 Or life on earth would deteriorate more and more so that cynicism and despair would be humanity’s only reasonable response.5 This article will explore how the creation theme is used in Revelation, how it relates to the Genesis creation account, and how it contributes to the theology of the Apocalypse today.

Files over 3MB may be slow to open. For best results, right-click and select "save as..."



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.