Commentaries on Revelation

On this page you will find Bible commentaries on the New Testament book of Revelation. The commentaries listed first are those that have received the best reviews. You will also find options for commentaries on Revelation that help pastors, teachers, and readers with application of the text, commentaries that approach the Scripture verse-by-verse, classic Christian commentaries, and much more.

Top Reviewed Commentaries on Revelation



The Book of Revelation (NIGTC) by G.K. Beale


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Reviews and Accolades:

Desiring God: #1 recommended commentary on Revelation

D.A. Carson: a “best buy” on Revelation, “for students and well-trained pastors…combines comprehensiveness with biblical fidelity, exegesis with theology, and literary sensitivity with historical awareness”

Craig Blomberg, etal: a “priority” commentary on Revelation

Keith Mathison: #2 ranked commentary on Revelation, “Beale’s commentary contains a wealth of information and should be consulted by any serious student of Scripture”

Tom Schreiner – recommended: “a massive and learned commentary from an amillennial perspective”

Best for: pastors trained in the original languages, scholars

Purpose: From the publisher: “At a time when the study of Greek is curtailed in many schools of theology, we hope that the NIGNT will demonstrate the continuing value of studying the Greek New Testament… the volumes of the NIGNT are for students who want something less technical than a full-scale critical commentary… the supreme aim of this series is to serve those who are engaged in the ministry of the Word of God and thus glorify God’s name.”



Revelation (BECNT) by Grant R. Osborne


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Reviews and Accolades:

D.A. Carson: “accessible…especially good at laying out what the options are”

Tom Schreiner – recommended: “a clear exposition from the premillennial perspective”

Keith Mathison: #5 ranked commentary on Revelation, “Osborne’s commentary is particularly helpful in providing historical background information on the people, places, and things mentioned in the biblical text.”

Best for: pastors, teachers, scholars

Purpose: From the Publisher: “The chief concern of the Baker Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament (BECNT) is to provide, within the framework of informed evangelical thought, commentaries that blend scholarly depth with readability, exegetical detail with sensitivity to the whole, and attention to critical problems with theological awareness. We hope thereby to attract the interest of a fairly wide audience, from the scholar who is looking for a thoughtful and independent examination of the text to the motivated lay Christian who craves a solid but accessible exposition.”



The Book of Revelation (NICNT) by Robert H. Mounce


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Reviews and Accolades:

D.A. Carson: a “best buy” on Revelation, “a learned and well-written work that not only explains the text satisfactorily in most instances but also introduces the student to the best of the secondary literature”

Craig Blomberg, etal: a “priority” commentary on Revelation

Tom Schreiner – recommended: “an excellent and lucid interpretation of the book”

Best for: pastors, teachers, scholars

Purpose: From the publisher: “Written for scholars, pastors, and lay readers alike…undertaken to provide earnest students of the New Testament with an exposition that is thorough and abreast of modern scholarship and at the same time loyal to the Scriptures as the infallible Word of God.”



Revelation 1-5, 6-16, and 17-22 (WBC) by David E. Aune


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Reviews and Accolades:

Tom Schreiner – recommended, “excellent on background, but lacking theologically”

D.A. Carson: a “best buy” on Revelation, “the prose is accessible, the arguments often elegant”

Keith Mathison: #3 ranked commentary on Revelation, “Aune is very helpful with the details of the text and the details of extrabiblical literature. He is not as helpful when it comes to the point of understanding what the book means, its message and theology.”

Best for: pastors, teachers, scholars

Purpose: From the publisher: “WBC series delivers the best in biblical scholarship, from the leading scholars who share a commitment to Scripture as divine revelation. It emphasizes a thorough analysis of textual, linguistic, structural, and theological evidence. The result is judicious and balanced insight into the meanings of the text in the framework of biblical theology.”



The Revelation to John by Stephen S. Smalley


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Reviews and Accolades:

D.A. Carson: “a competent piece of work”

Tom Schreiner – recommended: “a helpful English commentary”

Keith Mathison: #1 ranked commentary on Revelation, “I believe his view of the dating of the book is essentially correct…that the book was written in the reign of Vespasian (AD 69-79), just before the fall of Jerusalem to Titus in AD 70.”

Best for: pastors, teachers, scholars

Purpose: From the publisher: “The Revelation to John by Stephen Smalley is a magisterial interpretation of John’s Apocalypse as a grand drama, which can only be properly understood in light of John’s Gospel and letters and in the context of the Johannine community. As such, it offers the reader a significantly different approach to this enigmatic text than that offered by most contemporary commentaries. Working directly from the Greek text, Smalley offers a masterful analysis of the critical and literary dimensions of the Apocalypse for students and scholars alike.”



A Commentary on the Revelation of John by George Eldon Ladd


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Reviews and Accolades:

D.A. Carson: “detects more futurist elements in Revelation than do many commentators writing in the last half century”

Tom Schreiner – recommended: “a lucid interpretation from the historical premillennial viewpoint”

Keith Mathison: #4 ranked commentary on Revelation, “Despite differing with Ladd’s millennial view, I believe his commentary still contains a wealth of interpretive insight.”

Best for: pastors, teachers, scholars

Purpose: From the publisher: “A scholarly and comprehensive exposition of Revelation written in the language of the layperson. The verse-by-verse commentary is preceded by a brief discussion of authorship, date, setting, structure, and various methods of interpretation as well as by an analytical outline of the book.”



Revelation (NIVAC) by Craig S. Keener


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Reviews and Accolades:

D.A. Carson: “devotes appropriate attention to thoughtful application”

Craig Blomberg, etal: a “priority” commentary on Revelation

Best for: pastors, laypeople with significant biblical and theological knowledge

Purpose: From the General Editor: The primary goal of the NIV Application Commentary Series is to help you with the difficult but vital task of bringing an ancient message into a modern context. The series not only focuses on application as a finished product but also helps you think through the process of moving from the original meaning of a passage to its contemporary significance. These are commentaries, not popular expositions. They are works of reference, not devotional literature.”



Revelation 1-7, 8-22 (Wycliffe Exegetical Commentary) by Robert L. Thomas


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Reviews and Accolades:

D.A. Carson: “uphold, competently enough, pretribulational premillennialism”

Tom Schreiner – recommended: “a thorough commentary from the dispensational premillennial viewpoint”

Best for: pastors, teachers, scholars

Purpose: From the publisher: “Written especially for the informed layman, student, and scholar, this commentary seeks to clear the air. The book is interpreted according to a historical and grammatical hermeneutic and propounds a conservative, evangelical theology, but the reader will not get a narrow view on areas of disagreement. This commentary interacts with a range of major views, both evangelical and nonevangelical. It reaffirms the basic framework of eschatology espoused by ancient Christianity, but with added help from centuries of maturing thought and doctrinal progress in the Body of Christ.”



Reading Revelation Responsibly by Michael J. Gorman


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Reviews and Accolades:

Craig Blomberg, etal: a “priority” commentary on Revelation

Best for: pastors, laypeople with significant biblical and theological knowledge

Purpose: From the publisher: “Reading Revelation Responsibly is for those who are confused by, afraid of, and/or preoccupied with the book of Revelation. In rescuing the Apocalypse from those who either completely misinterpret it or completely ignore it, Michael Gorman has given us both a guide to reading Revelation in a responsible way and a theological engagement with the text itself. He takes interpreting the book as a serious and sacred responsibility, believing how one reads, teaches, and preaches Revelation can have a powerful impact on one’s own–and other people’s–well-being. Gorman pays careful attention to the book’s original historical and literary contexts, its connections to the rest of Scripture, its relationship to Christian doctrine and practice, and its potential to help or harm people in their life of faith. Rather than a script for the end times, Gorman demonstrates how Revelation is a script for Christian worship, witness, and mission that runs counter to culturally embedded civil religion.”



The Revelation of Saint John (BNTC) by G.B. Caird


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Reviews and Accolades:

Tom Schreiner – recommended: “a provocative and helpful interpretation”

Best for: pastors, teachers, scholars

Purpose: From the publisher: “Black’s New Testament Commentary has been hailed by both scholars and pastors for its insightful interpretations and reliable commentary.”



Revelation (REC) by Richard D. Phillips


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Reviews and Accolades:

World Magazine: 2017 “Series of the Year”

Best for: pastors, laypeople with significant biblical and theological knowledge

Purpose: The REC series has “four fundamental commitments. First, these commentaries aim to be biblical…Second, these commentaries are unashamedly doctrinal…Third, these commentaries are redemptive-historical…Fourth, these commentaries are practical…” All authors are “pastor-scholars.”



Triumph of the Lamb: A Commentary on Revelation by Dennis E. Johnson


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Reviews and Accolades:

Tom Schreiner – recommended: “a helpful and clear exposition for busy pastors from an amillennial perspective”

Best for: pastors, teachers, scholars

Purpose: From the publisher: Dennis E. Johnson deftly guides us through questions about how to interpret Revelation, what it meant to its original audience, and how it equips us today. He explains that Revelation fortifies the church against the Enemy’s wiles by disclosing the profound paradoxes of Christ’s victory and glory. The central themes of Revelation converge with Christ’s triumph over the Enemy.”



More Commentaries with Application Help for Pastors



Revelation (Teach the Text) by J. Scott Duvall


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Best for: pastors, laypeople with significant biblical and theological knowledge

Purpose: From the publisher: The Teach the Text series utilizes “the best of biblical scholarship” and provides “the information a pastor needs to communicate the text effectively. By keeping the discussion of each carefully selected preaching unit to six pages of focused commentary, the volumes in this series allow pastors to quickly grasp the big idea and key themes of each passage of Scripture. The text and its meaning are made clear, and sections dedicated to effectively teaching and illustrating the text help pastors prepare to preach.”



Revelation (Preaching the Word) by James M. Hamilton, Jr.


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Best for: pastors, laypeople with significant biblical and theological knowledge

Purpose: From the publisher: “For years, Crossway’s Preaching the Word commentary series has helped pastors, preachers, and anyone who teaches God’s Word to better interpret and apply the message of the Bible. Under the careful editorial oversight of experienced pastor and best-selling author R. Kent Hughes, this series is known for its commitment to biblical authority, its pastoral tone and focus, and its overall accessibility.”



Revelation (Interpretation) by M. Eugene Boring


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Best for: pastors, laypeople with significant biblical and theological knowledge

Purpose: From the publisher: “This series of commentaries offers an interpretation of the books of the Bible. It is designed to meet the need of students, teachers, ministers, and priests for a contemporary expository commentary. These volumes will not replace the historical critical commentary or homiletical aids to preaching. The purpose of this series is rather to provide a third kind of resource, a commentary which presents the integrated result of historical and theological work with the biblical text.”



Revelation (For Everyone) by N.T. Wright


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Best for: Anyone

Purpose: From the publisher: “N.T. ‘Tom’ Wright has undertaken a tremendous task: to provide guides to all the books of the New Testament, and to include in them his own translation of the entire text. Each short passage is followed by a highly readable discussion, with background information, useful explanations and suggestions, and thoughts as to how the text can be relevant to our lives today. A glossary is included at the end of each volume.”



Revelation (CCEC) by Daniel L. Akin


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Best for: Anyone

Purpose: From the publisher: This series “takes a Christ-centered approach to expositing each book of the Bible. Rather than a verse-by-verse approach, the authors have crafted chapters that explain and apply key passages in their assigned Bible books. Readers will learn to see Christ in all aspects of Scripture, and they will be encouraged by the devotional nature of each exposition presented as sermons and divided into chapters that conclude with a “Reflect and Discuss” section, making this series ideal for small group study, personal devotion, and even sermon preparation. It’s not academic but rather presents an easy reading, practical and friendly commentary.”



More Verse-by-Verse Commentaries



Revelation: Four Views by Steve Gregg


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Best for: pastors, laypeople with significant biblical and theological knowledge

Purpose: “Four parallel columns present the information you need on these key views, and inform you about outstanding commentators on the book of Revelation. No other book gives such extensive coverage of how the church has understood Revelation over the centuries. The four-column format makes this an easy read for lay people, pastors, and scholars alike. This is a wonderful addition to any Bible study resource library.”



Revelation (NAC) by Paige Patterson


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Best for: pastors, teachers, scholars

Purpose: From the publisher: “The New American Commentary is introduced to bridge the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. This new series has been designed primarily to enable pastors, teachers, and students to read the Bible with clarity and proclaim it with power.”



Revelation (TNTC) by Leon L. Morris


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Best for: pastors, teachers, scholars

Purpose: From the publisher: This series is “designed to help readers understand what the Bible actually says and what it means…[each commentary] examines the text section by section, drawing out its main themes. It also comments on individual verses and deals with problems of interpretation. The aim throughout is to get at the true meaning of the Bible and to make its message plain to readers today.”



The Message of Revelation (BST) by Michael Wilcock


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Best for: pastors, laypeople with significant biblical and theological knowledge

Purpose: The “the three distinctives of The Bible Speaks Today series are (1) “BST authors are committed to a serious study of the text in its own integrity,” (2) that “expositors should not be antiquarians, living only in the remote past” but suggest application for living, and (3) “each book is intended to be both readable in style and manageable in size.”



Hebrews ~ Revelation (EBC) by Alan F. Johnson


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Best for: pastors, teachers, scholars

Purpose: From the publisher: “Written primarily by expositors for expositors…its stance is that of a scholarly evangelicalism committed to the divine inspiration, complete trustworthiness, and full authority of the Bible…the chief principle followed in this commentary is the grammatico-historical – namely, that the primary aim of the exegete is to make clear the meaning of the text at the time and in the circumstances of its writing.”



Revelation (WBSC) by Richard K. Eckley


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Best for: pastors, laypeople with significant biblical and theological knowledge

Purpose: From the publisher: “An excellent resource for personal study, and especially helpful for those involved in the teaching ministries of the church, the Wesleyan Bible Study Commentary series will encourage and promote life change in believers by applying God’s authoritative truth in relevant, practical ways. Written in an easy-to-follow format, you will enjoy studying Scripture insights that are faithful to the Wesleyan-Armenian perspective.”



Revelation by John Walvoord


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Best for: pastors, laypeople with significant biblical and theological knowledge

Purpose: From the publisher: “Who better to help you understand the seals, trumpets, vials, woes, and plagues than John F. Walvoord, one of evangelicalism’s most prominent leaders, and Mark Hitchcock, today’s leading Bible prophecy expert? In this first in a renewed series of commentaries from Dr. Walvoord, he points out that much of the book’s symbolism can be interpreted literally. At key points, different views and approaches to interpretation are explored. Walvoord devotes special attention to textual and doctrinal issues while avoiding technical language. Refined, updated with the English Standard Version (ESV), and streamlined, this classic text is set to help you interpret the last book of the Bible and gain a better grasp of current trends and the climax of history!”



Revelation (NCBC) by Ben Witherington III


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Best for: pastors, teachers, scholars

Purpose: From the publisher: “The NCBC aims to elucidate the Hebrew and Christian scriptures for a wide range of intellectually curious individuals…[volumes] do not assume the reader has a great deal of specialized theological knowledge or an impressive command of the Hebrew, Aramaic, or biblical Greek… Utilizing recent gains in rhetorical criticism, social scientific study of the scriptures, narrative criticism and other developing disciplines, this series intends to provide a fresh look at biblical texts, taking advantage of the growing edges in Biblical Studies.”



Revelation (CC) by Louis A. Brighton


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Best for: pastors, teachers, scholars

Purpose: From the publisher: “A Theological Exposition of Sacred Scripture is written to enable pastors and teachers of the Word to proclaim the Gospel with greater insight, clarity, and faithfulness to the divine intent of the biblical text.”



Classic Christian Commentaries for Bible Study



Revelation 1-11 and 12-21 (MNTC) by John MacArthur


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Best for: Anyone

Purpose: From the publisher: “If you’re familiar with John MacArthur’s in-depth Bible teaching, you have an idea of what you’ll find in The MacArthur New Testament Commentary. The commentary takes you deep into each passage, verse by verse—sometimes word by word. It’s like having a Bible teacher sitting next to you as you study Scripture.”



Revelation by H.A. Ironside


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Best for: Anyone

Purpose: H.A. Ironside (1876-1951) was an internationally acclaimed Bible teacher and preacher, as well as the author of more than sixty books. His writings include addresses or commentaries on the entire New Testament, all of the Old Testament prophetic books, and a great many volumes on other biblical topics. For eighteen of his fifty years of ministry, Dr. Ironside was pastor of the historic Moody Memorial Church in Chicago, Ill.



Revelation by J. Vernon McGee


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Best for: Anyone

Purpose: From the publisher: “Radio messages from J. Vernon McGee delighted and enthralled listeners for years with simple, straightforward language and clear understanding of the Scripture. Now enjoy his personable, yet scholarly, style in a 60-volume set of commentaries that takes you from Genesis to Revelation with new understanding and insight.”