Objections to Premillennialism - pt. 3

Discussion in '2000-02 Archive' started by Christopher, Mar 10, 2002.

  1. Christopher

    Christopher
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    The claim that the church was set up as an “interim measure” due to Christ’s postponement of the kingdom, actually suggests the idea that the church is but an accident which was no part of God’s original plan.

    One could scarcely exaggerate the error in this proposition. The Bible clearly teaches that “the manifold wisdom of God” is made known “through the church,” and this was “according to the eternal purpose [plan] which he purposed in Christ Jesus.” (Eph. 3: 10-11) Hence, the church was in God’s plan from eternity.

    Further, the death of Christ was known before the foundation of the world (1 Pet. 1:19-20; Rev. 13:8), and the shed blood of that death “purchased the church.” (Acts 20:28). If the death of Christ was known for ages, it is certain that the result of that death was known as well — namely, the establishment of the church.

    Actually, the church is simply a body of baptized believers who have been saved from their past sins (Acts 2:38; 1 Cor. 12:13). The church is the saved! (Eph. 5:23). If the church is but an accident, that implies an accidental salvation!

    That the church was a part of God’s original plan for human redemption is further seen in the “types” of the Mosaic age. The tabernacle (specifically the holy place), and subsequently the temple, were types of the church (1 Cor. 3:16; Eph. 2:21; Heb. 9:9). These Old Testament symbols pictured the church’s future establishment, and its integral part in the plan of Jehovah.

    By His grace, Christopher
     
  2. Pastor Larry

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    Christopher, It seems that you made this point already in objection #1 where it was answered. Why do you make it again? Do you think that by different wording people are not going to recognize the point?

    The church is not an accident. It was a mystery planned from the beginning. I can see where an Arminian might buy that line of thinking because they don't believe that God is in determinative control of all things. However, I believe he is and I reject, again, your idea that the church was an accident. Man's lack of knowledge does not imply God's lack of determinative and eternal control.

    I would clarify a couple of things. First, the church according to Scripture is the body of Spirit baptized believers in this age (Eph 1:22-23; 1 Cor 12:13). Second, I am not convinced that your use of types is supportable from Scripture on the issues you have identified. Those types in the MC are not of the church but rather of redemption. One problem of some dispensationalists is the overuse of types in Scripture. They start to commit a major faux pas of hermeneutics (the same one engaged in by covenantalists) when they spiritualize plain language. I reject it when covenantalists do it and I reject it when dispensationalists do it. Let us limit types to what Scripture identifies as types. The pictures of the temple and sacrifices are pictures of redemption.

    [ March 10, 2002, 09:23 AM: Message edited by: Pastor Larry ]
     
  3. Ray Berrian

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    You are correct that in the Being of God, there were no mistakes like, God at the last minute thinking about the church age. The Apostle Paul speaks of the church age as ‘ . . . the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the world was hid in God . . . ' [Eph. 3:5 & 9] What the Lord meant by this is, that all of the Old Testament Prophets never knew that God would introduce this entity which we know as His church.

    John the Baptist did not preach the Gospel which was later offered to humankind by the Apostle Paul and Peter and others, [Matt. 16:18] he preached the Kingdom message of repentance [John 3:2] It is doubtful that John the Baptist ever knew of the age of grace/the church age, unless Jesus told him. The Bible does not tell us this information.

    Jesus offered the ‘ . . . Gospel of the Kingdom,' as did the Baptist [Matt. 4:23] to the Jews but they rejected He and His message. [John 1:11] In fact the ‘beatitudes' of Matthew 5 were His communiqué as how to live in the Kingdom Age that was turned aside by His people, the Jews. Admittedly, we have adopted and used His most excellent teaching in our relationships with people and more especially in our relationship toward God. His manifesto of the Kingdom Age will probably be reintroduced at the beginning of the 1,000 year reign of Christ on the earth. This is my own opinion, as to the preamble of His Kingdom guidelines found in Matthew chapter five for the Millennial theocratic reign of our sovereign Christ. This spiritual truth is great for any era of time as we live before the Lord.

    The Gospel of the Kingdom [Matt. 4:23] is quite distinct from His founding of the church. [Matt. 16:18] Late in Jesus' ministry on earth He told Peter and other disciples that He was going to build His church on the Rock, meaning Himself. [Matt. 16:18] Just three verses down from verse 18 He breaks the undesirable news, to His disciples, of His impending death. [Matt. 16:21]

    There is an interpolation between Jesus offered Kingdom designated in [Matt. 4:23] and the Kingdom Age/1,000 year reign of Christ on the earth broached, repeatedly in Revelation chapter twenty. This interpolation of time is what we call the church age or as Paul speaks of as ‘the fellowship of the mystery.' [Eph. 3:9] ‘To the intent that NOW unto the principalities and powers in heavenly places might be known by the CHURCH the manifold wisdom of God.' [vs. 10].

    While the O.T. prophets knew nothing of the church age, they did know of a coming theocratic, reign of the Messiah, our Lord Jesus. [Zechariah 14:9, 17; Micah 5:2] He will become the Ruler in Israel, says the Prophet Micah. If you study the matter you will find that every O.T. prophet spoke of this age, except, perhaps Hosea. Hosea emphasized the fact that Jehovah/the Lord will always be married to the Israelite people, though partially blinded during the church age. [Romans 11:25 section E]

    Late in Jesus' ministry to breaks the news of the future entity called the church and of His impending death. [Matt. 16:18 & 21] Please, take not that the word ‘ . . . I WILL build My church is in some form of a future tense. I don't have my Lexicon handy. This future tense places a death null and an extinction to the one covenant theory, as though the church ran from the Abrahamic covenant until this very hour.

    It must be a rude awakening when some people finally realize that God and the Apostle Paul were dispensationalists. Note [I Cor. 9:17; Ephesians 1:10 & 3:2 and Colossians 1:25] Drs. Walvoord, Thomas Ice, Randall Price, Grant R. Jeffrey, C. I. Scofield, Paul Enns plus J.N. Darby have reintroduced the theology of the Apostle Paul that was lost up until the last few centuries.

    Oh, and I also believe these things that I jot down.

    Respectfully,

    Ray
     
  4. Christopher

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    The Gospel of the Kingdom...is quite distinct from His founding of the church.

    (Matthew 19:29) And every one that hath forsaken houses, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands, for my name's sake, shall receive an hundredfold, and shall inherit everlasting life.

    (Mark 10:29) And Jesus answered and said, Verily I say unto you, There is no man that hath left house, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands, for my sake, and the gospel's,

    (Luke 18:29) And he said unto them, Verily I say unto you, There is no man that hath left house, or parents, or brethren, or wife, or children, for the kingdom of God's sake,

    How can you believe that the gospels are synoptic? You read one verse in one gospel that is clearly a parallel of the same verse in another, and because something is called by a different name (i.e., kingdom of God and kingdom of heaven) you divide it.

    You then say that the gospel of the kingdom and the church are two separate things. The above verses use the terms "gospel" and "kingdom of God" synonymously, and that is clear! Are you now going to separate the "Spirit of God" and the "Spirit of Christ" and say there are, in fact, two Spirits?!

    By His grace, Christopher
     
  5. Ray Berrian

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    Christopher,

    Your statements are your statements; my reflections on the Word of God are mine. I did not say anything about 'the Spirit of Christ' and the 'Holy Spirit.'

    Do you see that the Kingdom age refused when Jesus was here on earth will be reinstated during the 1,000 year reign from Jerusalem? [Zechariah 14:17] How much of the truth that I wrote down in my previous post--do you believe?

    I will be looking forward to you knocking down each of my previous statements if you think they are soundly wrong. You started the new post; don't run and hide.
     
  6. Ray Berrian

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    Christopher,

    Another outstanding professor of Premillennialism and dispensational theology is Dr. Lewis Sperry Chafer including Dr. John Walvoord from Dallas Theological Seminary. I studied Chafer's Systematic Theology Volumes I - 8 for part of my program leading to the Th.D.

    My best regards as you study,

    Ray
     
  7. Christopher

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    *PLEASE READ ALL OF THIS POST*

    I am by no means hiding from you or any other premillennialist. I do not agree with your belief that there will be a literal 1,000-year reign of Christ when He returns. I believe when Christ returns, that's it! The New Testament teaches:

    ONE RESURRECTION OF THE JUST AND UNJUST (John 5:28, 29; Acts 24:15)

    ONE RETURN OF CHRIST, ONE JUDGEMENT (2 Thess. 1:5-10) The coming for the church and judgement upon the world are one in the same event.

    THE RESURRECTION, JUDGEMENT, AND RENEWAL OF CREATION ARE SIMULTANEOUS EVENTS. (Rom. 8:17-23; 2 Pet. 3:3-14; 1 Cor. 15:22-26)

    Furthermore, Christ died to put away the old covenant. Tell me why He would bring it back? Premillennialists assert that those things that were nailed to the cross with Christ are going to be reinstated during the "Millennium." (Col. 2)

    1. Jerusalem as capital city of the kingdom
    2. The temple rebuilt
    3. A reestablished priesthood
    4. Animal sacrifices again offered
    5. Christ entering the temple each Sabbath by the eastern gate while the priests offer sacrifices
    6.Observation of dietary laws
    7. Circumcision

    I think the very thought of this is crazy!

    a. THE CONTEXT OF ROM 9-11: Paul is wrestling with the issue of how the Messiah, foreseen in the OT as a great blessing to the Jews, could have been rejected by them.

    b. ROM 9:1-5 acknowledges that Israel was chosen. by God and possessed the highest spiritual blessings.

    c. ROM 9:6-7 Rejects the false implication that God has been untrue to His purpose for Israel. His explanation: not all who are descended from Israel are Israel.

    d. ROM 9:8 - 10:21: There follows a series of illustrations that "mere physical descent from Abraham did not guarantee the possession of the blessings promised to Abraham."

    (1) Ishmael (9:8-9)
    (2) Esau (9:10-18)
    (3) In 9:24-26, Paul recalls that God told Hosea that He would choose others who were not his people to be "my people." They would be called "sons of the living God." (Hosea 2:23, 1:10)
    (4) In 29:27-29 he cites Isaiah 29:16 and 45:9 as evidence that not all of Israel would be saved, but only a remnant.
    (5) In 10:19 he cites Deut 32:21 as evidence that God would make Israel envious "by those who are not a nation."
    (6) In 10:20-21 he cites Is 65:1-2 in defense of God’s present choice of the Gentiles.

    e. ROM 11:1-10 Reaffirms that God has not rejected His people: A believing remnant remains.

    (1) Paul cites himself as an example of a believing Jew. (11:1)
    (2) Israel’s situation is no different than in Elijah’s day when a remnant was chosen.
    (3) UPSHOT: GOD HAS BEEN TRUE TO HIS PURPOSE IN ELECTION, FOR ELECTION IS NOT COEXTENSIVE WITH THE WHOLE NATION. (Rom 11:7)

    f. ROM 11:11, TRADITIONALLY VIEWED AS A TURNING POINT IN PAUL’S ARGUMENT, IS NOT.

    (1) Prior to 11:11, Paul stated that God’s rejection of the Jews is not total. After 11:11 he seems to say that neither is it final. Rom. 11:12, 15, 25-26 foresee widespread conversion of Jews.
    (2) YET THIS CONVERSION OF JEWS IS NOT FUTURE - IT IS CONTEMPORANEOUS WITH THAT OF THE GENTILES, AND WILL BE TO THE END

    (a) "Just as you who were at one time disobedient to God have now received mercy as a result of their disobedience, so they too have now become disobedient in order that they too may now receive mercy as a result of God’s mercy to you." (11:31)
    (b) I.e., Paul conceives of the Jews’ conversion occurring in the present as a result of the Gentiles’ conversion, which incites them to envy. Cf. 10:19.
    (c) While this did not happen in Paul’s day, the process of Gentile conversion and Jewish response will continue until "the full number of the Gentiles has come in. And so all Israel will be saved" (11:25-26)

    (3) CONCLUSION: WHEN PAUL TALKS ABOUT THE CONVERSION OF ISRAEL, HE IS NOT SPEAKING OF A FUTURE CONVERSION AFTER THAT OF THE GENTILES, BUT A PRESENT ONE IN RESPONSE TO THE GENTILES.

    By His grace, Christopher
     
  8. HankD

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    Dear Christopher,

    While dispensationlism has some compelling arguments about it, this area of "restored Israel" is one of the areas of great difficulty for me. Namely the restoration of some of the details of the mosaic law such as animal blood sacrifices as you mentioned.

    What is your view of this statement and Jesus answer.

    Acts 1 6 When they therefore were come together, they asked of him, saying, Lord, wilt thou at this time restore again the kingdom to Israel?
    7 And he said unto them, It is not for you to know the times or the seasons, which the Father hath put in his own power.

    What might have Jesus said to make them ask this question?

    Was this just one more place where they had completely misunderstood Him?

    I have no other agenda but to know your point of view.

    Thanks
    HankD
     
  9. Christopher

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    Thanks for your kind post and not for criticizing me like other know-it-alls on this board. I have thought about that myself. I honestly think that the disciples were asking a question about a topic they misunderstood. They were Jews and so, before they became disciples of Jesus they were taught by the Pharisees, who Jesus told: "The kingdom of God cometh not with observation" and "The kingdom of God is within you."

    Just like the brother said before, Jews didn't know anything about the church. Therefore, when they asked Jesus this question they weren't asking him about some spiritual church kingdom that they knew nothing about. They were asking about that kingdom prophesied about in the Old Testament. But like many people today, they still believe it is literal, just like the Jews did. They see nothing fulfilled in Christ. So when Jesus told them that answer, He was talking to Jews, NOT GENTILES. Now if He would have been talking to Gentiles and said "The kingdom of God is within you" it my have made sense. But since they knew nothing about the church he would not have been giving them answers pertaining to the church.

    Do you think the disiples knew everything just becasue Jesus was their teacher? Absolutely not! Look at Philip.

    (John 14:8-10) Philip saith unto him, Lord, shew us the Father, and it sufficeth us. Jesus saith unto him, Have I been so long time with you, and yet hast thou not known me, Philip? he that hath seen me hath seen the Father; and how sayest thou [then], Shew us the Father? Believest thou not that I am in the Father, and the Father in me? the words that I speak unto you I speak not of myself: but the Father that dwelleth in me, he doeth the works.

    Read Acts 15 and it will show that when Jesus came the first time He established the House of David. Else if He didn't, then all Gentiles are still lost.

    By His grace, Christopher
     
  10. Pastor Larry

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    Remember that the sacrifices in the OT were about more than simply sin. They were about thanksgiving, worship, praise, civil restitution, etc. In other words, the sin offerings were only part of the sacrificial system. Remember as well that the blood of bulls and goats could never take away sin (Hebrews), not in the OT and not in the Kingdom. The restoration of the sacrifices in the kingdom will be memorial.

    This is a non-issue when we understand the OT sacrificial system.
     
  11. Pastor Larry

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    So assuming for the sake of argument that this is true, why didn't Christ correct their misguided view of the kingdom? After these who were asking the question were the ones who were playing a vital role. Surely it would have been important for them to understand this. As you leave it, Christ allowed the disciples to go on in their misunderstanding, a misunderstanding that affected their preaching. Why would Christ allow this? Why would he not simply correct them and tell them that they misunderstood the kingdom?

    [ March 11, 2002, 11:29 AM: Message edited by: Pastor Larry ]
     
  12. Daniel David

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    Christopher, I must again oppose your objection. You aren't really objecting to the pre-mill position. Your comments are blatantly anti-Chaferian dispensationalism. You fail to grasp that many pre-mills do not hold to all the same teachings as Chafer and Scoffield. If you persist in linking all pre-mills into one group, you will only expose your ignorance that much more.

    I am pre-trib, pre-mill and have yet to see a valid argument against it anywhere on this board. I do not believe that the temple, sacrifices and all the other stuff will be according to the Old Covenant. Further, I don't believe the sermon on the mount is the law of the millenial reign.

    Now, you must figure out how I can be pre-trib, pre-mill and not hold to your so-called objections. Until you do, stop making blanket statements that are void of research and truth.
     
  13. Christopher

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    The Lord didn't correct them right then and there, but He eventually did becasue their preaching was that the kingdom of God had come. The apostles preached that the law was until John and then the kingdom which every man was pressing into. How could you press into something that did NOT exist?????????? Furthermore, it is not your place to tell anybody that their position is void of research. I'm sorry that you think you know everything.

    By His grace, Christopher
     
  14. HankD

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    Hmm, everyone makes such good points but there is still a lot of disagreement. I'll have to ruminate on all this for a while.

    HankD
     
  15. Pastor Larry

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    I don't grant this at all. I think the NT preaching is for a kingdom to come. However, that position depends on understanding "kingdom" as that of which the OT prophesies (which was what the apostles had in mind in asking their questions) rather than on the popular "spiritual" idea of the kingdom. I think the Kingdom is spiritual to be sure but it is not only spiritual. If you read the descriptions of the Kingdom in the OT, you will find a legal, moral, ecclesiastical, social, etc. aspects to the Kingdom, which do not exist today. If we are living in the Kingdom then it seems the OT had no idea what they were talking about, at least in regards to this. Of course, no one wants to grant that so we come up with ways to understand the OT teaching in line a system rather than in line with the text itself. Alva McClain, The Greatness of the Kingdom is usually the book that I recommend on this topic.

    As for the pressing into the kingdom, several interpretations are possible. Bock lists 4 I believe, none of which I totally agree with though the last is the best. We must understand that the kingdom was around when Christ was around. That is why he told the Pharisees, The kingdom of God is in your midst. There were many people who had accepted him as King and Lord (Remember the triumphal entry???) They were "pressing into it" though there is discussion about whether that is a good translation. The first century were days like the OT prophesied in many ways. However, the Jews as a whole led by their leaders rejected the King and thus the kingdom was taken from them until such time as a people would arise who would accept the King. This is prophesied in Zech 12:9ff and Rom 11:25ff tell us that this will take place after the fulness of the Gentiles has come in because the gifts and calling of God are without repentance.


    I don't think I told you your position was void of research. What I have argued is that you are not fully informed on the issues in the debate. There is nothing wrong with that. No one is fully informed on all issues. However, you are bringing up arguments that have long been answered in numerous works that you can find in publication. I am sorry that you are offended that someone attempts to show you where your understanding might not fully deal with all the biblical data. However, remember this is a discussion board. Delving into topics like these is not for the faint at heart. And lastly, I do not think that I know everything. I just learned some things by reading Bock on the verse you cited. However, on some of these issues that you are addressing, I have done some study and reading and am familiar with the discussion.

    [ March 11, 2002, 02:04 PM: Message edited by: Pastor Larry ]
     
  16. Daniel David

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    Christopher, by lumping all pre-mills into one group that all definitely believe the exact same thing is either ignorance or willfully misrepresenting the other side. I was giving the benefit of the doubt. I never said I know everything. I strongly disagree with your assertions that all pre-mills believe the same thing though.
     
  17. HankD

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    OK, I've had the luxury of a few days off but not for much longer.
    I've been mulling over this subject of the kingdom and have a request of Pastor Larry and Christopher.

    What is your take on this passage?

    Personally I don't think Christ was addressing an issue on the basis of a misunderstanding of the Pharisees concerning the kingdom of God but stating a fact in this passage:

    Matthew 21:42 Jesus saith unto them, Did ye never read in the scriptures, The stone which the builders rejected , the same is become the head of the corner: this is the Lord's doing, and it is marvellous in our eyes?
    43 Therefore say I unto you, The kingdom of God shall be taken from you, and given to a nation bringing forth the fruits thereof.
    44 And whosoever shall fall on this stone shall be broken: but on whomsoever it shall fall, it will grind him to powder.
    45 And when the chief priests and Pharisees had heard his parables, they perceived that he spake of them.


    Does Christ mean that they already possess the kingdom and it will be taken from them or that though the promise had been made to them (Israel), the kingdom would be given over to believing gentiles because of their (national leadership of Israel) rejection of Christ?

    Or something different?

    HankD
     

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