Wednesday, February 18, 2009

An Eschatological Primer

1. Jesus warned His disciples against undue eschatological speculation or fixation. (Mtt 24:43, Mk 13:32, 1 Thes 5:2,4, Acts 1:6-11, Rev 16:15)
2. The “Day of the Lord” is mentioned or alluded to at least 226 times in the OT (Amos 5:18) and 19 times in the NT (1 Cor 1:8, Phil 1:6, 2 Thes 2:2).

3. But, these “Last Days” are not the “End Times.” (Heb 1:2, 1 Ptr 1:20, 1 Jn 2:18)

4. Traditionally, eschatological theology is confined to the “Seven Great Endings.” These are:

a. Death (Gen 2:17, Ps 23:4, Ps 90:6-12, Ps 116:15, Rm 5:12-17)
b. The Intermediate State (1 Cor 15:26, 53, 2 Cor 5:4, 1 Thes 4:14, Heb 2:14-15)
c. The 2nd Coming of Christ (Mtt 25:13, Mk 8:38, Lk 12:40, Acts 1:7-10)
d. The Resurrection of the Dead (Rm 8:23, 1 Cor 15:12-49)
e. The Day of Judgment (Ps 96:13, Eccl 12:14, Mtt 10:14, Mtt 25: 31-46)
f. Hell (Ps 9:17, Mtt 7:13, 2 Thes 1:9, 2 Ptr 2:4, Rev 20:10)
g. The New Heavens and Earth (Isa 65:17, 2 Ptr 3:13, Rev 21:1)

5. The “Millennium” is only mentioned in six verses in a single chapter out of the whole Bible. (Rev 20:1-10). The “Battle of Armageddon” is never actually fought (Ezk 38-39, Rev 16:16). And, there is not a single “Antichrist” but rather many (1 Jn 2:18, 2 Jn 1:7) who have the “spirit of antichrist.” (1 Jn 4:3)

6. The idea of a “Rapture” is not actually mentioned—instead, it is extrapolated from a handful of isolated “proof texts.” (1 Thes 4:16-17, Mtt 24: 40-41) If anything, the idea is more applicable to the enemies of God than the remnant of God. (Mtt 23:2, Mtt 24:45-46)

7. Most of the prophecies of impending judgment mentioned in the New Testament were slated for fulfillment “very soon,” in that “very generation.” (Mtt 23:36, Mtt 24:34, Mk 13:30, Lk 21:32) Thus, the apocalyptic literature of the NT revealed impending judgment upon Jerusalem—largely fulfilled in 70 AD.

8. The special status of Israel is a mystery in the sense that God’s promises have been transferred to the Church, the New Israel (Rm 9:6-7, Rm 11:17-24), and yet the Jews remain a central focus of God’s redemptive work in the world. (Rm 11:1-10, 25-32)

9. There are no new or mysterious symbols used in the Revelation. Instead, the book draws on the rich literary and theological imagery of the Old Testament. (Rev 1:3)

10. Remember that all Bible prophecy has both an immediate context and fulfillment and an ongoing context and fulfillment. (Rev 22:18-20)

11. Remember too that there are still many events in the Victory of Christ and the Gospel, which have yet to occur—and thus there remain many outstanding promises for the future.


SEChapman said...

Sorry , I missd this..Missy had to get new contacts right away...maybe next week..

David said...

Have your recorded your studies on Eschatology?

George Grant said...

David: Yes, they've been recorded and posted on our podcast site.

David said...

I have grown up in dispensational churches, and I am interested in understanding properly non-dispensational views from non-dispensational writers. What suggestions do you have of books that will explain the authors view w/o ripping other views?