The Temple and the Church's Mission: A Biblical Theology of the Dwelling Place of God
in New Studies in Biblical Theology
Publisher IVP Academic
"Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth. . . . And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem. . . . And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, ‘Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man." (Revelation 21:1-3, ESV). In this comprehensive study, G. K. Beale argues that the Old Testament tabernacle and temples were symbolically designed to point to the end-time reality that God's presence, formerly limited to the Holy of Holies, would be extended throughout the cosmos. Hence, John's vision in Revelation 21 is best understood as picturing the new heavens and earth as the eschatological temple. Beale's stimulating exposition traces the theme of the tabernacle and temple across the Bible's story-line, illuminating many texts and closely-related themes along the way. He shows how the significance and symbolism of the temple can be better understood in the context of ancient Near Eastern assumptions, and offers new insights into the meaning of the temple in both Old and New Testaments.
This book changed the way I read Scripture. Detailed, well-researched, and clearly written, Beale's study of the temple describes the grand narrative of God's mission to create a temple-kingdom of priest-kings, a narrative that begins in Genesis 1 and culminates in the visions of Revelation. For those not wanting to wade through over 400 pages of biblical theology, there is a condensed version of the same argument called "God Dwells Among Us" (co-authored by Mitchell Kim).
Expanded version of his chapter from Biblical Theology, great read, very beneficial. Everything Beale writes is a must read.