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The Biblical Case For Puritan Postmillennialism

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by Iconoclast, Mar 1, 2018.

  1. Iconoclast

    Iconoclast Well-Known Member
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    The Biblical Case For Puritan Postmillennialism

    Why Premillennialism Must Be Rejected:

    Why Amillennialism Must Be Rejected:

    Why Rushdoony’s Postmillennialism Must Be Rejected:

    Why Orthodox Puritan (Historicist) Postmillennialism Must Be Accepted:

    Found on facebook...read the notes and offer a biblical response to all or part of the article.

     
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  2. Rob_BW

    Rob_BW Well-Known Member
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    Interesting as always. Thanks for posting.
     
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  3. Martin Marprelate

    Martin Marprelate Well-Known Member
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    Thank you for this, Icon. It makes for interesting reading.
    However, when I read this
    It makes me think that the gentleman doesn't understand Amillennialism. It is certainly not 'non-millennialism;' it is better termed 'realised millennialism,' and no restriction is placed on what God may do in this present age. As for the binding of Satan, we have the very words of our Lord Himself that He has bound him already (Mark 3:27 etc.).

    My main problem with Postmil is that Christ's return is put off indefinitely. This is contrary to Scripture. An under-inaugurateded eschatology will tend to lead either to despair as the world does not improve as Postmil promises (e.g. 2 Timothy 3:1ff) or to antinomianism as there is supposedly always time to change one's ways (Matthew 24:45-51). We should be eagerly awaiting the return of Christ (e.g. Titus 2:11-14) and ensuring that we will be found doing His will when He comes.
     
  4. Iconoclast

    Iconoclast Well-Known Member
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    Hello Martin...enjoy your posts all the time...

    David Silversides is a solid presbyterian and I always get something from his messages on sermonaudio, as he reverences The Lord,and His word at all times...here is one i listened to today;
    Real Godliness And Wishful Thinking

    Here are some others:
    He Must Reign

    Apostasy Is Disgusting

    The Mystery Of The Kingdom
     
  5. Yeshua1

    Yeshua1 Well-Known Member
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    My main problems with postMill are that the scriptures tell us that things will be getting worse, not spiritual better at time of Second Coming, and that the King Himself coming Himself, and not the Church ushers in the New Age...
     
  6. Martin Marprelate

    Martin Marprelate Well-Known Member
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    I don't think this is altogether true.
    The Bible tells us that things will get both worse and better.
    Yes, there will be wars and rumours of wars; yes, the love of the greater number will grow cold and so forth. But at the same time, the Gospel will go out into all the world, the grain of mustard seed will grow into a mighty tree and there will be a vast crowd of the redeemed standing before the throne on the Last Day.
     
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  7. Iconoclast

    Iconoclast Well-Known Member
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    Which scriptures say that things will be getting worse
     
  8. Yeshua1

    Yeshua1 Well-Known Member
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    The ones concerning the Great Tribulation and coming of the man of Sin, the Beast.
     
  9. Yeshua1

    Yeshua1 Well-Known Member
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    Yes, Amil and premils agree on this part, and both of us require though the King to actually come in order to have His kingdom now set up!
     
  10. Iconoclast

    Iconoclast Well-Known Member
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    Not sure what verses say things are getting worse.
     
  11. Yeshua1

    Yeshua1 Well-Known Member
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    Matthew 24:37, 2Thes 2:3-10,
     
  12. Iconoclast

    Iconoclast Well-Known Member
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    Thanks for the verses....
     
  13. Iconoclast

    Iconoclast Well-Known Member
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    American Postmillennialism | The Reformed Reader

    According to Kik, the characteristic feature of postmillennialism is that there will be a universal and decisive triumph by the church throughout the nations of the earth, including peace coming to all nations as a result, through the gospel of Jesus Christ. This triumph, in turn, becomes the necessary condition for Jesus Christ to return to earth at the end of the millennial age. Robert Clouse, gives additional insight into the extent of the postmillennial vision:



    The kingdom of God is now being extended through Christian teaching and preaching.

    This activity will cause the world to be Christianized and result in a long age of peace and prosperity called the millennium. The new age will not be essentially different from the present. It emerges as an increasing proportion of the world's inhabitants are converted to Christianity.

    Evil is not eliminated but will be reduced to a minimum as the moral and spiritual influence of Christians is heightened. The church will assume greater importance and many social, economic and educational problems will be solved. This period closes with the second coming of Christ, the resurrection of the dead and the final judgement.11



    Lorraine Boettner, another noted postmillennial apologist adds, "that the world eventually is to be Christianized."12



    Thus one unifying factor in what is now designated "postmillennialism" is this idea of the millennial age as one in which the entire world is progressively subdued by the church through the means of the preaching and acceptance of the gospel. Boettner sees the result of this as follows;



    This does not mean that there will ever be a time on this earth when every person will be a Christian, or that all sin will be abolished.

    But it does mean that evil in all its many forms eventually will be reduced to negligible proportions, that Christian principles will be the rule, not the exception, and that Christ will return to a Christianized world.13



    Greg Bahnsen, echoing the same general theme, sees the defining essence of postmillennialism in contrast to both premillennialism and amillennialism as,

    Its essential optimism for the present age. This confident attitude in the power of Christ's kingdom, the power of the gospel, the powerful presence of the Holy Spirit, the power of prayer, and the progress of the great commission, sets postmillennialism apart from the essential pessimism of amillennialism and premillennialism.14
     
  14. Iconoclast

    Iconoclast Well-Known Member
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    Exegetical Defense of Postmillennialism

    Overview

    The author seeks to exegete Paul’s allusion to the first verse of the Dixit Dominus [​IMG] (Psa 110:1: “The LORD says to my Lord: ‘Sit at My right hand, Until I make Thine enemies a footstool for Thy feet.’” / 1Co 15:25: “For He must reign until He has put all His enemies under His feet.”). The study seeks to demonstrate that Christ is reigning in the exact sense of this verse during the interadvental period. The author demonstrates this by an exegesis of the passage, giving special attention to the chronology of the events of 1 Corinthians 15:22-26. The study is supported by the emphatic frequency of the NT teaching that Christ ascended to the right hand of the Father, in fulfilment of the expectations of the Dixit Dominus. Significant reflection is given to the chronological argument that death, the last enemy, is overcome at the parousi,a (coming) when those alive will be “changed” (1Co 15:23, cf 15:52-54). This “dates” Christ’s mediatorial reign between the two advents. Hence, the eschatological chronology of interadvental postmillennialism is supported. [​IMG] The study concludes by noting the difficulties such an exegesis raises for (full) preterist, dispensational, premillennial, and pessimistic amillennial eschatologies.


    The Dixit Dominus in the NT

    The importance of the Dixit Dominus (Psa 110) and particularly the first two verses are paramount. [​IMG] The first verse of Psalm 110 is directly quoted or referred to at least 21 times in the New Testament—more than any other Hebrew Scripture verse. Including references to the later verses of the Psalm in Hebrews (Heb 5:6, 7:17, 7:21, 5:10, 6:20, 7:11, 7:15), the Psalm is referred to some 28 times in the New Testament. It is quite an understatement, then, to say that this passage is highly significant for a theology of Messiah and His kingdom.


    The Dixit Dominus in Paul’s Resurrection Defense

    One of the most significant theological expositions of Psalm 110:1 is found in 1 Corinthians 15:25 and the context.



    For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ all shall be made alive. But each in his own order: Christ the first fruits, after that those who are Christ’s at His coming, then comes the end, when He delivers up the kingdom to the God and Father, when He has abolished all rule and all authority and power. For He must reign until He has put all His enemies under His feet. The last enemy that will be abolished is death. (1Co 15:22-26)


    Context and Purpose of 1 Corinthians 15:25-26

    The entire chapter of 1 Corinthians 15 is directed to the question of the validity of bodily resurrection, as indicated in 15:12, “some among you say that there is no resurrection of the dead.” In fact, the words for resurrection in their noun (avna,stasij) or verb (evgei,rw) forms are found 22 times in the passage (15:4-52). In developing his answer to this unorthodoxy, he provides an eschatological sequence moving from Christ’s resurrection to the te,loj (“end”). On first glance it might be curious that Paul’s defense of resurrection includes an explanation involving the kingdom and reign of Christ. But upon analysis the reader finds that it is precisely because resurrection regards death, and death is a kingdom enemy, that Paul must discuss the reign of Christ. Paul, the model apologist, argues evangelically (15:1-2), scripturally (15:3-4), evidentially (15:5–7), experientially (15:8) logically (15:9-19), theologically (15:20-22), eschatologically (15:23-27, 51-54), somatologically (15:35-49), and practically (15:58)—that there is a future bodily resurrection of believers!


    The specific context of 15:25-26 is the origin of death (“for as in Adam all die”), the Messianic deliverance from death (“so also in Christ all shall be made alive”), and the sequence of this deliverance: “But each in his own order: Christ the first fruits, after that those who are Christ’s at His coming.” The term “order” is from the root ta,gma. [​IMG] The ta,gma (“proper order”) proceeds in the following manner: Christ was resurrected, [​IMG] “after that” (e;peita) the resurrection of “those who are Christ’s at His coming” (parousi,a) (v. 23), “then comes the end” (ei=ta to. te,loj). It is clear that Paul is giving a chronological sequence of events because of his use such adverbs (e;peita, ei=ta) used for “marking the sequence of one thing after another.” [​IMG]
     
  15. Iconoclast

    Iconoclast Well-Known Member
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    ibid;
    a) Further, with consistent premill interpreters that identify the reign of 15:25 as following the resurrection, they must deny that this “He must reign” clause is a citation-interpretation of Psalm 110:1. Because if it is an allusion to Psalm 110:1, then there can be no question that Christ is presently acting in fulfillment of it (Act 2:33, 34, 5:31, 7:55-56, Rom 8:34, Eph 1:20, Col 3:1, Heb 1:3, 13, 8:1, 10:12, 12:2, 1Pe 3:22).

    First Corinthians 15:27 affords even greater support for this, since it connects this reign with the exalted place of Christ and particularly putting all things in “subjection” to Him (Psa 8:6). “For he has put (u`pe,taxen, an indicative aorist) all things in subjection under his feet” (15:27a). Christ’s position over all things is not only written grammatically as a past event in 15:27 (with a progressive element, see 15:28), several other New Testament passages state this plainly and catenate His position at the “right hand” (Psa 110:1) with “all things under...” (Psa 8:6), just Paul does in 15:25-27 (Eph 1:20-22, Phi 3:21, Col 2:10; 1Pe 3:22). For example: Eph 1:20-21 the Father “seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly places, far above all principality and power and might and dominion...”

    Hebrews 2:8 is probably the most complete commentary on this idea. It includes both the present preeminent position of Christ and the future consummation: the familiar already and not yet. [​IMG] “Thou hast put all things in subjection under his feet. For in subjecting all things to him, He left nothing that is not subject to him. But now we do not yet see all things subjected to him.” Surely no one can deny that to Paul, Peter, and the writer of Hebrews these are present realities which began with the Ascension.

    b) As an ad hoc response premillennialists may claim that Christ is presently “seated” but not “reigning.” However, this distinction is not only out of sorts with 15:25 as a parallel to Psalm 110:1 (note here Paul interprets sitting as reigning), but it is simply mistaken about the meaning of Psalm 110:1. “Sit at my right hand” means “sit enthroned.” The term for “sit” in Psalm 110:1 (the Qal imperative of yashav, bvy) may mean “reign.” “Reign as king” (malak %lm) is paralleled with “sit” (bvy) in many passages (e.g., 1Ki 1:17, 24, 30). In such contexts, “sitting” is the concrete image of enthronement. Such a sense is reinforced in 110:2, since this “Lord” “rules” with the “scepter/rod of your might.” Hence, Dahood translates it, “sit enthroned.” [​IMG] Allen, who also translates this as “sit enthroned” uses this as evidence that the entire Psalm relates to “the concluding phase of the enthronement ceremony.” [​IMG] After all, the concept of sitting on a throne is not distinguishable from reigning. [​IMG]

    c) The eschatological sequence of chapter 15 does not permit any period following the overcoming of the “last enemy” for other enemies to arise, especially death. But, premillennialism requires a post-parousia period for other enemies and death. As has been argued, neither is the telos an end period. [​IMG]


    d) Connecting the earlier section (15:22ff) and the later section of the chapter (15:51ff) are necessary to a complete treatment of the implications for the millennial issue. Overlooking this connection is a serious weakness in premillennial treatments of the passage. The premillennial view fails to account for the fuller context of 1 Corinthians 15 where the time-frame of the reign is clearly disclosed, i.e., we are taught when the “last enemy” is to be abolished, at the parousia which is when “death is swallowed up in victory” (at the “rapture,” of 15:54). It follows necessarily that the other enemies are subdued prior to the last enemy. Hence, Christ’s reign must begin prior to the parousia.
     
  16. Iconoclast

    Iconoclast Well-Known Member
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    Summary

    “For He must reign until He has put all His enemies under His feet” (15:25). When is Christ reigning in the exact sense of this verse? — Precisely when Christ is seated at the right hand of the Father. Identifying the reign of Christ with the Dixit Dominus confirms the interadvental time-frame of His reign (1Co 15:25 is citation of Psa 110:1). Emphatically and repeatedly we are taught that Christ is at the right hand of God the Father (Psa 110:1; Mar 16:19, Act 2:33, 34, 5:31, 7:55-56, Rom 8:34, Eph 1:20, Col 3:1, Heb 1:3, 13, 8:1, 10:12, 12:2, 1Pe 3:22), and thus on a throne (Acts 2:30), reigning over His kingdom (Col 1:13), having dominion (1 Ti 6:16, 1Pe 4:11, 5:11, Rev 1:6), and even ruling “the kings of the earth” (Rev 1:5). Thus, Christ’s return is postmillennial. The New Testament abundantly confirms that Christ is reigning presently and is thus, progressively putting His enemies under His feet. In the words of Psalm 110:2, during the interadvent, Christ is “ruling in the midst of his enemies.”


    Is it not clear that as Christ reigns, such a reign consists of subduing enemies (15:25). Sometimes the conquest of Prince of Peace requires the death of a Herod, even with worms (Act 12:23), or vengeance on a Lamb-less Temple (Mar 13:2), or the desolation of a Christ-rejecting Jerusalem (Mat 23:38). The blessedness of His reign, however, is that He also conquers His enemies with the gospel of grace and makes a Christless Pharisee like Saul of Tarsus into the Christ-filled Paul, the very apostle to the Gentiles he once despised, a dear co-laboring brother to those whom he once murdered. Whatever else is entailed in the conquest of the king of kings, we are assured that there will be “a great multitude, which no one could count, from every nation and all tribes and peoples and tongues” of former enemies, hostile in nature to God, who will fill heaven with their praises of the Lamb who sits on the throne (Rev 7:9). As the Psalm says, He is able to cause His people to “volunteer freely in the day of [His] power” (Psa 110:3, Mat 28:19-20). We are promised that “the earth will be full of the knowledge of the LORD as the waters cover the sea” (Isa 11:9). Based on the present exegesis the interadvental expectation is general and universal advancement of Messiah’s kingdom with a final consummation of this victory at His coming when even death will be utterly and completely abolished. [​IMG] Maranatha!
     
  17. Jeep Dragon

    Jeep Dragon Member
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    I guess I consider myself an "optimistic amillennialist," which kind of sounds similar to that article on "Puritian postmillennialism" if I understand it correctly. I think that Christ is currently reigning, but His kingdom now on earth doesn't necessarily have to look like the way humans naturally think of a kingdom where some humans reign over other humans. I think the kingdom now on earth is simply the regenerate people and His "ruling over them with a rod of iron" refers to His sovereignly changing their hearts.

    What I mean by "optimistic" does not mean that life in general will get better for humanity, but rather that the number of regenerate people is not necessarily going to reduce to practically none before the second coming. God's kingdom could still exist and even increase in number, but that doesn't mean that the media will acknowledge it. Life could still get worse in general with Christianity still be portrayed by the media as evil and Christians could still be being persecuted, but that doesn't mean that the number of believers has to get smaller.

    Last October, we had a conference called "Know Beyond" at our church where the speaker talked about his ministry to Muslims. He said that prior to 9/11, he was lucky to see about 10 Muslims convert to Christianity per year, but since 9/11, he wins thousands per year to Christ and said that millions of Muslims in the world become Christians every year.

    The kinds of postmillennialism that annoy me is the kind that blur the gospel with "cultural Christianity" who think that life in general is going to get better before the second coming of Christ and that "Christianity" (some kind of "Christian culture") will eventually take over the world before Christ comes back. That seems to me like wishful thinking as well as a desire to blame Christians of other views for the problems in the world because they're not "helping build this kingdom." It seems to me like some kind of desire to rule on the earth in some kind of a quasi-Christian culture without Jesus physically on earth to show us what His kingdom actually should be like.
     
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  18. Iconoclast

    Iconoclast Well-Known Member
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    Hello J D
    Biblical postmill believe passages like psalm 72 are in the process of being fulfilled.
    They believe that the gospel spreading worldwide is inevitable.
    They do not believe in goats becoming Christianized like some of the evangelical churches believe by following Finneys new measures.
    They trust gospel regeneration of sinners will overcome the evil influence of the world,the flesh, and the devil.
     
  19. Reformed

    Reformed Well-Known Member
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    I was first intrigued about post-millennialism after reading Keith Mathison's book "Postmillennialism: an Eschatology of Hope". However, I am not convinced of the post-mil position and remain an amillennialist.
     
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