The Book of Revelation is Not about Retreat from the World

New Testament scholar Richard Bauckham, in his The Theology of the Book of Revelation, writes the following timely rebuke and exhortation for Christians:

Revelation does not respond to the dominant ideology by promoting Christian withdrawal into a sectarian enclave that leaves the world to its judgment while consoling itself with millenial dreams. Since this is the standard caricature of the apocalyptic mentality, it must be strongly emphasized that it is the opposite of Revelation’s outlook, which is oriented to the coming of God’ s kingdom in the whole world and calls Christians to active participation in this coming kingdom…Worship, which  is so prominent in the theocentric vision of Revelation, has nothing to do with pietistic retreat from the public world. It is the source of resistance to the idolatries of the public world. It points representatively to the acknowledgment of the true God by all the nations, in the universal worship for which  the whole creation is destined.” [(New York, NY: Cambridge University Press, 1993), 161.]

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