The Unseen Realm: Discovering the Supernatural Worldview of the Bible  -     By: Michael Heiser
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The Unseen Realm: Discovering the Supernatural Worldview of the Bible

Lexham Press / 2015 / Hardcover

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Product Description

The Unseen Realm presents the fruit of Dr. Micahel Heiser's fifteen years of research into what the Bible really says about the unseen world of the supernatural. His goal is to help readers view the biblical text unfiltered by common assumptions that leave no room for the strange and wonderful view of the world the Bible offers.

"People shouldn't be protected from the Bible," Dr. Heiser says. But modern theological systems often do just that, by "explaining away" difficult or troublesome passages of Scripture because their straightforward meaning doesn't fit into our tidy systems.

In The Unseen Realm, Michael Heiser shines a light on the supernatural world - the ancient yet endlessly fascinating light of the historical and cultural milieu of the Bible's original authors and audiences. This light allows today's pastors and scholars to understand the biblical authors' supernatural worldview.

Product Information

Format: Hardcover
Number of Pages: 364
Vendor: Lexham Press
Publication Date: 2015
Dimensions: 9.00 X 6.00 X 3.00 (inches)
ISBN: 1577995562
ISBN-13: 9781577995562

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Publisher's Description

In The Unseen Realm, Dr. Michael Heiser examines the ancient context of Scripture, explaining how its supernatural worldview can help us grow in our understanding of God. He illuminates intriguing and amazing passages of the Bible that have been hiding in plain sight. You'll find yourself engaged in an enthusiastic pursuit of the truth, resulting in a new appreciation for God's Word.
  • Why wasn't Eve surprised when the serpent spoke to her?
  • How did descendants of the Nephilim survive the flood?
  • Why did Jacob fuse Yahweh and his Angel together in his prayer?
  • Who are the assembly of divine beings that God presides over?
  • In what way do those beings participate in God's decisions?
  • Why do Peter and Jude promote belief in imprisoned spirits?
  • Why does Paul describe evil spirits in terms of geographical rulership?
  • Who are the “glorious ones” that even angels dare not rebuke?
 After reading this book, you may never read your Bible the same way again.
“There is a world referred to in the Scripture that is quite unseen, but also quite present and active. Michael Heiser's The Unseen Realm seeks to unmask this world. Heiser shows how important it is to understand this world and appreciate how its contribution helps to make sense of Scripture. The book is clear and well done, treating many ideas and themes that often go unseen themselves. With this book, such themes will no longer be neglected, so read it and discover a new realm for reflection about what Scripture teaches.”
—Darrell L. Bock, Executive Director for Cultural Engagement, Senior Research Professor of New Testament Studies, Howard G. Hendricks Center for Christian Leadership and Cultural Engagement
“‘How was it possible that I had never seen that before?' Dr. Heiser's survey of the complex reality of the supernatural world as the Scriptures portray it covers a subject that is strangely sidestepped. No one is going to agree with everything in his book, but the subject deserves careful study, and so does this book.”
—John Goldingay, David Allan Hubbard Professor of Old Testament, School of Theology, Fuller Theological Seminary

Author Bio

Michael Heiser is a scholar in the fields of biblical studies and the ancient Near East, and he is a Scholar-in-Residence at Faithlife, the makers of Logos Bible Software. Michael has an MA in Ancient History from the University of Pennsylvania, and he has an MA in Hebrew Studies and a PhD in Hebrew Bible and Semitic Languages from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He has published widely in scholarly journals and popular periodicals such as Bible Study Magazine, and he teaches ancient languages online at MEMRA. Learn more about Dr. Heiser and his writings at

Product Reviews

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5 out of 5
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3.3 out Of 5
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  1. 5 Stars Out Of 5
    It is for Everyone!
    October 20, 2016
    Scott n Isaiah
    Quality: 0
    Value: 0
    Meets Expectations: 0
    Michael Heiser has caused me to dig deeper and want more than any other teacher I have had. Now when I hit a passage that isn't quite clear to me, I wonder Dr. Heiser's take on the scripture!
  2. Michigan
    Age: 25-34
    Gender: Male
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    Students of the Bible will do well in reading this book closely!
    March 14, 2016
    John M Kight
    Age: 25-34
    Gender: Male
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    Michael S. Heiser is Scholar-in-Residence at Faithlife, the creators of Logos Bible Software, and has a Ph.D. in Hebrew Bible and Semitic Languages from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Heiser has written a host of peer-reviewed articles for Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society, Journal of the Evangelical Study of the Old Testament, Themelios, Tyndale Bulletin, Bible Translator, and much more. Heiser also contributed a number of articles in the Dictionary of the Old Testament: Prophets (IVP, 2012), and the Lexham Bible Dictionary. Most recently, Heiser has made waves with his new book The Unseen Realm: Recovering the Supernatural Worldview of the Bible (Lexham Press, 2015).

    The Unseen Realm begins with a brief introduction into Heisers personal journey as a Hebrew student and his encounter with Psalm 82. This background provides the premise for the investigation that then unfolds in the coming pages. The book is divided into eight parts: (1) First Things the stage is set with some preliminary rules for engagement; (2) The Households of God attention is directed towards the initial biblical patterns, namely that God has a divine family, a heavenly assembly, or council, of elohim in which he is superior over all others; (3) Divine Transgressions attention directed towards the arrogance of the nachash (the Serpent) and his transgression that fractured the human-divine relationship; (4) Yahweh and His Portion attention is directed towards Yahwehs acts of intervention amid his people, especially when in conflict or threatened by gods or men; (5) Conquest and Failure the readers are guided through the intended results of the conquest under Moses and Joshua, and the divine backdrop that motivated therein; (6) Thus Says The Lord attention is directed towards the theological intentions that undergird the monarchys history, and the reader is guided through the prophets and into the realization of the kingdom already, but not yet; (7) The Kingdom Already the exploration enters into the realm of the New Testament and the anticipation and inauguration of the King, and the New Testament dependence on Old Testament motifs therein; and (8) The Kingdom Not Yet the investigation comes full-circle and further establishes the supernatural worldview of the context within the closing climax of the Christian Bible.

    There are a number of exciting aspects of this book that make it a must-read. First, I think that Heiser does an excellent job guiding the reader through some of the more commonly discussed issues of critical scholarship concerning the unseen realm of the ancient Near East, and yet does so in such a way as to keep the tenor of the conversation understandable and clear for the reader. Second, it is clear that Heiser is sensitive to the fact that the content being presented is likely to shake the foundation of many personal traditions. His awareness of such, I believe, makes the reader desire to follow his investigation further as oppose to abandon it. Third, Heiser does well in his overall organization of the topic. Each chapter has various subsections that build upon each other and allow the reader to digest smaller chunks of text and ideas. Finally, the overall thrust of the book is executed well and I think the reader will appreciate the attention to detail, but it is the content that makes the book so incredible. Admittedly, I did find myself in disagreement with Heiser at times, but he is generally fair in his understanding and presentation of the textespecially when it comes to Genesis and the Old Testamentand he does well in guiding the reader to his conclusion rather than making a bunch of empty statements.

    The Unseen Realm is breathtaking. Heiser presents a vision of God and the supernatural world that untangles much of the complexity that has historically plagued the reading of passages such as Psalm 82, Genesis 1:26, 6:1-4, Judges 6, Daniel 7, and much more. Having already been familiar with Heisers work, I knew in large what to expect with this book. But, I must say, The Unseen Realm has delivered much more than I anticipated. This doesnt mean there arent areas of concern or disagreement that I have with Heisers hermeneutic at part, but rather that his arguments are well-presented and persuasively met with a keen awareness of the ancient Near East. Heiser will make you think outside your traditional bubble as he ushers you through the ancient Near Eastern world with confidence and wonder. He carefully guides the reader through difficult waters of ignorance and unearth an undeniable theme penetrating the biblical narrative. Students of the Bible will do well in reading this book closely. It will change the way you read and study your Bible, and for that it comes highly recommended!

    Also, for those wishing to investigate further, Douglas Van Dorn has compiled an excellent companion volume, The Unseen Realm: A Question & Answer Companion. This volume is saturated with Scripture references and useful beyond words. I wouldnt buy one without the other!

    I received a review copy of these books in exchange for and honest review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commissions 16 CFR, Part 255: Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.
  3. 5 Stars Out Of 5
    Wow, talk about Coherent..
    December 29, 2015
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    I must say that this book deals with some solid stuff.

    When you hear someone claim that they have a Biblical theology void of any denominational leanings, the first reaction is yeah right.

    Well enter Dr. Heiser.

    With this book he has been able to present facts and connections in the Bible that are both astonishing and profound. And while that might open suspicion, since history has shown many false teachers claiming these titles of praise, the factor that sets Dr. Heiser apart from these others is that he is coherent and open. He actually presents the information to you in a way that allows you to dig deeper, that you might draw your own conclusions on the topic. All that is asked of you is honesty and some hard work in study.

    The reason I bring this up is because due to the nature of the book, there are things in here that will challenge you. Straight up they will. BUT DO NOT RUN. Once you sit for a second and observe the content, you will see that what is being presented is clearly not heretical nor excessive. It is something to behold really, that there could be a story that seems so mythical, but all the evidence overwhelmingly points to it being true. Thats our Bible and as C.S. Lewis put it, it is the myth that is true.

    One such evidence of coherence would be the manner in which John 10:30-39 is handled. I must say, I have been searching for a clear answer to this odd passage for about a year now. Simply reading this passage is enough for you to draw questions. I had searched the common interpretation for these verses and the interpretations of my favorite theologians (whom I still respect deeply) but none of them could present an answer that seemed to make sense. They present a god = judges view that seems to lessen Jesus claim to divinity. Well, you have no problem with the Unseen Realm view on this passage. Really, this view beefs up Jesus claim. It actually unveils it with awe inspiring beauty, not because of Heisers writing, but because of the actual statement that Jesus was making. This book really drew me out to worship! Oh and theres more! From the symbolism of baptism, the implications of the flood, and the wars for the promise land you will see these events presented with details in the text that only deepen the theological punch and stir our affections for our God who is one and above all.

    I must also say, the book is scholarly in nature, so slow down and take your time with it. It is accessible. You will be able to read the pages and understand what is being said. Dr. Heiser has mined through troves of peer reviewed articles and dissertations and put them together in a way that the non-specialist can read. This is solid, and it does require us to do some thinking, and thats the least we can do. It is said that a book that doesnt challenge you whether in content or in style, it is wasted reading! And I tell you, this is NOT wasted reading!!

    People fear the unknown, and although we cannot claim omniscience, we can be quite comforted by the things that we CAN learn. So then I present to you that this book is more of a blessing than a challenge, and through the challenge you will be blessed. Dr. Heiser has a heart for the Word, and I know that if he could share that with you, you would be left better off than you were before.
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