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.

4 comments:

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?