While many people are signalling the end of the world due to the outbreak of Ebola, blood red moons, ISIS and the release of the Left Behind movie starring Nicholas Cage, an even greater event has just happened to trigger the end. If anyone has listened to Dr. James White for any period of time, you know that there is one topic that everyone wants him to discuss but that he utterly refuses and that is eschatology. Well, believe it or not, today Dr. White discussed the topic of eschatology from an Amillennial perspective.
While I have not personally read the book The Last Days: A Christian View of History (You can order it here) as of yet , I found this sample of a chapter of the book and I felt the materials were extremely useful in understanding what the New Testament refers to when it speaks of “this age” and “the age to come”. This is the 6th chapter written by D.A. Carson titled “Partaker in the Age to Come” and gives a great overview of the mentioned topic.
The posting on this blog has been limited over the last few weeks due to working on another project over the summer. It has been much work and lots of research however today we are tremendously happy to introduce to you this project in the form of a new website that we have created that is solely focused on the topic of eschatology. The Website is simply titled Amillennialism.
While there are large websites on other eschatological positions, there are very few that offer resources on this biblical understanding of prophetic scriptures. The new website will offer many of the resources including articles, books, audio and video from the best authors and speakers on the eschatological position known as Amillennialism. We had previously suggested several resources on this website but the organization of the materials was left desired. We decided to move our materials for the study of eschatology to this new website and add much more.
We are still adding new materials and we are in search of good materials that reflect this eschatological position. We welcome any suggestions you might have of resources that promote Amillennialism.
I have been posting some information this week on four blood moons, Russia and all sorts of end time speculation from John Hagee and the third eagle of the apocalypse. I thought it would be wise to give my readers a dose of reality by posting a few excerpts from Dean Davis’ new book The High King of Heaven. Unfortunately, shortly after release, the publisher of this book went out of business and Mr. Davis is seemingly preparing to launch the book with a new publisher. I’m looking forward to reading it. Here are a few excerpts from this book:
I had been anticipating a review of Sam Storm’s eschatology book Kingdom Come by Kim Riddlebarger for quite some time now. I believe he had mentioned that he was working on it during the summer and it finally has arrived. Obviously Riddlebarger is an expert on the subject of Amillennialism and hence his review is very much appreciated! Click here to read the review.
I have been studying eschatology for a few years now and I have been blessed in my efforts to understand the biblical theme of the “last things”. The reason I have spent a few years is, as anyone who has studied eschatology knows, that the bible is absolutely saturated in looking forward to blessed events where God will act and there are numerous interpretations of what the bible says about it. This was true of the Old Testament with the expectation of a future Messiah who would sit on the throne of David, set up the Kingdom and redeem God’s people in a climactic way. It is also true of what the 2nd coming of Christ will bring at the end of the age.
I have read numerous books on the subject of eschatology (many can be found on my eschatology page on this website) from various points of view. Each book tended to answer some of the questions that I had accumulated over the years but quite honestly they also seem to present even more questions. With that said, I just finished reading Sam Storm’s “Kingdom Come: The Amillennial Alternative”[i]. This is probably one of the first times that I have honestly had more questions answered than had been accumulated[ii]. While I am convinced that the Amillennial position is the closest to being faithful to the biblical evidence, it sometimes is a difficult position to explain particularly to someone who has been entrenched in premillennial thinking especially from the Dispensational Perspective. Sam Storms is in a unique position to write such a book that is helpful to present the Amillennial position in a clear fashion. Sam is a graduate from Dallas Theological Seminary and he was a student of great dispensational thinkers such as John Walfoord, J. Dwight Pentecost and Charles Ryrie. Storms understand dispensationalism and eschatology as a whole to which he has dedicated many years of study to. He is able to present his position in light of other positions much more effectively because he’s been there! Here are a few thoughts in regards to the book.
The book is an affirmation of the Amillennial position with some critiques of other positions such as dispensational premillennlialism and postmillennialism. I will elaborate more on some of the topics he addresses below but firstly, I would like to simply say a few general words in regards to this volume. The book is a reasonably hefty volume close to 600 pages in length with only a few footnotes hence Storms spends some decent time developing his thesis. I have yet to experience someone write on the topic of eschatology with such a care for his readers. Storms really makes a tremendous effort to explain himself in such a way as to give his reader a full understanding of terminology especially when mentioning positions that are not in agreement with his own. He also doesn’t brush off arguments from other eschatological positions and spends time answering the critique of those who are opposed to his understanding of prophecy. The reader may not be in complete agreement with everything Storms says but he/she will respect the time and care Storms places upon each topic he addresses. What is probably the strongest feature of the book is Storms’ relentless effort to build his arguments from the text of scripture. This is not a philosophical book nor is it simply a systematic eschatology but it is strongly focused upon interpreting key biblical texts that deal with eschatology.
Storm’s gives us a brief introduction to the topic of eschatology, his background and how he came to embrace the Amillennial position in his introduction. The first chapter deals with the hermeneutics of eschatology. I found this section very useful prior to beginning the book since Storms lays out his interpretive principles from the get go. One that was worth mentioning was point 4 (of 5 points) where Storms explains how those who were writing the texts of future prophecies were doing so in a context of what made sense to them in the present. Their expression was based upon their culture and experience while attempting to describe what it was that they were seeing. Understanding this is helpful when attempting to “grasp the distinction often drawn between what is literal and what is figurative. I found this especially enlightening when he applies this to the text of Isaiah 65. The second chapter is a definition of dispensational eschatology which would be tremendously useful to those who are not familiar with this understanding of the end times. Chapter three is a focus upon Daniel’s 70th week. Storms would hold to the same position as Philip Mauro and many others who view the fulfilment of the 70th week in the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. He also provides a good response to the dispensational notion that the 70th week is still in the future. Chapter 4 continues to look at the book of Daniel in regards to key texts that are important to grasp prior to addressing New Testament prophetic texts.
Chapter 5 is a critique of Premillennialism in general whether dispensational or historic. I truly enjoyed this chapter because I have heard many scattered assertions and arguments in regards to the problems with Premillennialism but Storms was able to lay out his case by founding his arguments on the exegesis of key texts that explicitly show that Premillennialism contradicts the testimony of scripture in regards to the timing of the 2nd coming of Christ. He goes through a very thorough exegesis of 1 Corinthians 15, Romans 8:18-23, 2 Peter 3:8-13, Matthew 25: 31-46 and John 5:28-29. At the end of this chapter, he responds to some main arguments posited by Premillennialists against the Amillennial position.
Continue reading “Kingdom Come: The Amillennial Alternative Book Review”
The understanding of Millennial views is always interesting to me especially in regards to discussing all sides of the debate. For those of you who have no earthly idea what I’m talking about it is the discussion amongst christians as to when the return of the Lord Jesus Christ will happen in regards to the millennium spoken of in Revelation 20:1-6. There are three main position which are Premillennialism (Christ returns pre the millennium and sets up a 1000 year kingdom on the earth), Amillennialism (Christ returns to set up the New Heavens and the New Earth after the millennium which means that the 1000 years is symbolic of the Kingdom of Christ that is happening today) or Postmillennialism (which Christ comes after the Millennium to an earth which is saved due to the spread of the gospel).
Leaving postmillennial aside, I wanted to focus upon an argument that I had read in Sam Storm’s new book that I had never honestly considered in the past. The premillennialists have to argue that after Christ returns that physical death will continue on since there needs to be individuals in mortal bodies who take up the rebellion against God in Revelation 20:7-10. These are usually identified with the children of people who entered into the millennium in unglorified bodies. While there will be those who will rebel, there will also be individuals during the reign of Christ upon the earth who will become believers and be Christians. These are those who come to faith in the Lord Jesus Christ who is amongst them.
Continue reading “Premillennial Problem”
I just thought I would post this quickly. Sam Storms was interviewed on the Janet Mefferd Show to promote his new book Kingdom Come: The Amillennial Alternative. Feel free to listen to the interview here.
The study of eschatology is a long process that takes much more effort than most people realize. This is exactly the reason why many individuals simply don’t bother with addressing what the bible says about the last days. They feel intimidated by the many subjects that need to be addressed in the study of eschatology and how to bring them all together in a systematic way. Many people simply settle with whatever view their church teaches and accept that was the biblical teaching on eschatology. I have actually met folks who simply don’t know that any other view exists and they are content with their church’s view or the Left Behind book series.
Needless to say, the bible is saturated in eschatology and hence the study of this important subject is relevant in many other areas of our theology. The question is: where to begin? There are numerous books written by various individuals on the subject of prophecy and honestly who has enough time to filter through all these books?
When I was beginning to look at the subject of biblical eschatology, I got some advice from a brother on which books to purchase in order to get a better understanding of what the bible teaches regarding prophecy. The books were fantastic but they only gave me one specific eschatological view and I wanted to explore many. Throughout the years I have picked up several books on various different positions. I thought it might be useful to share some of these books with my readers especially for those who would like to get a better grasp of the different positions available. I understand that I have an entire section on this website on eschatology however this is representing mainly the Amillennial position. With that said, the recommendations I am making are of the more well-known eschatological positions and my readers should be aware that there are varying views outside of these.
I understand that not everyone wants to delve as deep into the subject as some others and also that not everyone has the time to do so. I thought it would be a good idea to divide the recommendations into three categories mainly an introductory category & intermediate reading. The book descriptions are taken from various website and not my own.
Continue reading “Where to Begin Studying Prophecy?”