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I now know the evolution of Christianity's view of the way the world ends (or, according to the book, changes.) While I don't believe it, I appreciate it as a story that many believe.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful
What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?
This lecture series takes on an important set of topics and handles them well. Professor Koester clearly knows his stuff, and his insights into the Book of Revelation and it's history of interpretation are a helpful corrective to the reigning popular approaches to this important biblical book. That said, Koester's lectures rarely fail to disappoint with the threadbare amount of material that is covered in each. There are several reasons for this. First, Koester's style of speaking is slow, and he pauses often. Second, his presentation of the material wastes a lot of time in belabored explanation of the obvious. He often fails to get to the meat of a particular subject because he has made a point of giving a well defended argument about everyday experience. For instance, he will spend five minutes trying to convince his listeners that troubled political times cause people to be afraid and need to hear a message of hope. Who would doubt that? Finally, he repeats himself a great deal. This pattern becomes the most frustrating in the two lectures that discuss musical interpretations of Revelation through the ages. In all, these two lectures contain about 5 minutes worth of actual material; and the listener is forced to wait through 60 minutes meandering narratives for a point that never comes. In short, this lecture series is not at a collegiate level. I imagine that Dr. Koester is more accustomed to teaching at a masters or doctoral level and has attempted to adjust his style to the college level and undershot the mark. Or perhaps the college level is not what I remember.If you're looking for a lecture series with a lot of meat, I would suggest that you buy a different lecture series from The Great Courses (they really are great) and just go read one of Koester's books on Revelation.
Would you ever listen to anything by The Great Courses again?
Absolutely. I am currently listening to The Great Courses' lecture series, "The Other Side of History," and it is fantastic.
How could the performance have been better?
He could have prepared the series for a more advanced audience.
What character would you cut from The Apocalypse: Controversies and Meaning in Western History?
7 of 8 people found this review helpful