Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Eschatology for Dummies

Did I think there was only three or four viewpoints? Actually there are variations of all these viewpoints. Here are my notes from Belcher's book and my studies.
1. Pre-mil means that Christ comes before the literal 1000 years. Revelation 4-22 is in the future and most of the book of Revelation will take place in the future. Futurist position.
a. Historical pre-mil sees national Israel (born Jews) and spiritual Israel (descendants of Abraham both Jews and Gentiles, one people of God an one body of Christ). The church is not raptured before the tribulation. See "The Blessed Hope" by the late George Ladd, and the newer "A Case for Historic Premillennialism" by the Denver Seminary professors.
b. Dispensational pre-mil means rapture of the saints before the tribulation; and Scripture is segmented into different ways that God works with humans and God has a different plan for Israel than He has for the church. This is the Hal Lindsey-Left Behind-Scofield Bible group. See the Jerry Johnson DVD for a critique of dispensationalism.
c. Covenantal pre-mil sees the Covenant of Grace as the umbrella of God over history from Genesis to Revelation.
2. Post-mil means that Christ comes after a long period of time; the power of God through the gospel brings the millennium and we are in the millennium now. The tribulation has happened or is happening.
a. Liberal post-mil came into being at the beginning of the 20th century with the search or the historical Jesus. Christ was merely the example, not the Savior as we know him.
b. Historic post-mil emphasizes that the gospel will not bring universal conversion, but a gradual spiritual and economic prosperity. Christ's kingdom is now.
c. Post-mil Theonomy says that God will bless the nations of the earth as they are faithful to His law and His Word. God's law is the standard for judicial systems of every land. Theonomic post-mil are preterists or parital-preterists believing that Revelation chapters 1 through 19 and some of chapter 20 has happened. See Gentry and Bahnsen posts below.
3. A-mil means that there is no literal earthly millennium but that Christ's reign from Heaven began at the cross and continues until He comes again. Satan is bound, but there still exists a battle with him and that the age will end with tribulation and apostasy. Christ will return, and the judgment will be followed by an eternal state. God has one plan, one people, throughout history with Old Testament promises fulfilled in the New Testament. See "A Case for Amillenialism" by Kim Riddlebarger.
a. A-mil Preterist view such as in Jay Adam's "I Will Tell Thee the Mystery". Most of Revelation is a picture of first-century events with the fall of Jerusalem in 70 A.D.
b. A-mil Historical view such as in William Hendrikson's "More Than Conquerors". Revelation is picture of the church throughout history.
4. Hyperpreterists and Transmillennialism.  See post below for huge problems with this view.


  1. Thank you for this clarification. I am newly reformed and I have often gotten myself lost between all of the new information waiting for me :) This helps a bunch. When I am ready to dive into this topic I will have a reference.

  2. Please check out this new(ish) book:

    1. Thanks for sending this. I am pretty busy these days, but someone else might want to check it out.


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