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#54322 - Fri Aug 25, 2017 10:22 PM Friendly conversation with a Post-Mill  
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Hi I am having a friendly conversation with someone who is Post-Mill. In his argument against the A-Mil position he says the following concerning A-Mils "pessimistic outlook".
Quote
Can you imagine if the First Century Christians had the same pessimistic view based on what they saw around them? I guess they figured that God could change hearts and minds over the course of time? And think of the Dark Ages. Those Reformers really should have given up before they started, don't you think?


I told him, I do not look at it on a pessimistic manner at all, mainly because I believe God is sovereign and regardless of how things look like, there is no need for a Christian to give up. As Romans 8:37 says "we are more than conquerors..". Is there something else, that perhaps I could add to that?
Something else in what he said, is insinuated I think. It seems to assume that the First Century Christians and the Christians in the dark ages didn't give up, because they were Post-Mil. Am I reading him correctly?

Tom

Last edited by Tom; Fri Aug 25, 2017 10:28 PM.
#54324 - Sat Aug 26, 2017 7:18 AM Re: Friendly conversation with a Post-Mill [Re: Tom]  
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What certain people or groups "think" emotionally has no bearing upon what is true. igiveup Do I look upon the future in a pessimistic manner? You bet I do, when considering it from a horizontal plane. According to Scripture, the immorality and violence and even weather is going to get progressively worse until the LORD returns. In fact, the timing of Christ's return won't be any too soon, again from the human perspective, for the deception and persecution of the visible church will be so severe that even the elect will be in danger of falling away, once again from a human perspective (Matt 24:22; Mk 13:22).

Simultaneously, I have a very optimistic outlook looking at the future from God's perspective, i.e., according to His eternal love and foreordination of His Church; the totality of the elect, the Bride of Christ. A truly loving Father always chastens His children in order to refine them, purging away the old sin nature and conforming them to the image of the Son (Heb 12:5-13). Secondly, all those who Christ redeemed will be infallibly called out of this world of darkness into the glorious body of Christ; the Church and preserved until the end.

Thirdly, there is always the fallacious argument from Posties that Christ MUST BE victorious and thus... (logical fallacy) the majority of mankind MUST BE saved. However, this is not a biblical teaching nor is the "logic" warranted. If Christ would have come to redeem just one single sinner and secured that person's redemption, He would be victorious if that is what God had ordained in eternity. The "sand which is upon the sea shore" (Gen 22:17) or "stars of heaven" (Gen 26:4) or "dust of the earth" (Gen 28:14) passages are often used as evidence to show that those saved will far exceed those who are not saved. All those passages show is that the number of the redeemed will be large when viewed throughout history. On the other hand, when that great number is compared to the totality of the number of people of the entire human race, they are referred to as a remnant, i.e., a very small part of the whole (Gen 45:7; 2Kg 19:30; Isa 1:9, 10:20-22; Zach 8:12; Rom 9:27, 11:25; Rev 12:17).

Scripture, not some argument of how people in the past must have "felt" about their dire circumstances must determine one's outlook of the future. One can have a wrong understanding of the future which gives one a subjective confidence to endure. The enduring is certainly commanded by Scripture, but the reasoning may be totally wrong. Amils, are pessimistic (realistic) about the future for the visible church on this earth but they are certainly optimistic about the future for the TRUE Church which cannot be destroyed by either this earth nor the Devil himself.


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#54325 - Sat Aug 26, 2017 9:32 AM Re: Friendly conversation with a Post-Mill [Re: Pilgrim]  
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Originally Posted by Pilgrim


Thirdly, there is always the fallacious argument from Posties that Christ MUST BE victorious and thus... (logical fallacy) the majority of mankind MUST BE saved. However, this is not a biblical teaching nor is the "logic" warranted. If Christ would have come to redeem just one single sinner and secured that person's redemption, He would be victorious if that is what God had ordained in eternity. The "sand which is upon the sea shore" (Gen 22:17) or "stars of heaven" (Gen 26:4) or "dust of the earth" (Gen 28:14) passages are often used as evidence to show that those saved will far exceed those who are not saved. All those passages show is that the number of the redeemed will be large when viewed throughout history. On the other hand, when that great number is compared to the totality of the number of people of the entire human race, they are referred to as a remnant, i.e., a very small part of the whole (Gen 45:7; 2Kg 19:30; Isa 1:9, 10:20-22; Zach 8:12; Rom 9:27, 11:25; Rev 12:17).



Jeff, I agree with you on this, but have this one question. This concerns the number of those saved. I've read where Calvin in commenting on Romans 5:15 made comments such as 'that the grace procured by Christ belongs to a greater number than the condemnation contracted by the first man."

Romans 5:15 - "But the free gift is not like the transgression. For if by the transgression of the one the many died, much more did the grace of God and the gift by the grace of the one Man, Jesus Christ, abound to the many" (NASB)

So, how do we intrepret this verse?


John Chaney

"having been firmly rooted and now being built up in Him and established in your faith . . ." Colossians 2:7
#54326 - Sat Aug 26, 2017 4:56 PM Re: Friendly conversation with a Post-Mill [Re: John_C]  
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Originally Posted by John_C

Jeff, I agree with you on this, but have this one question. This concerns the number of those saved. I've read where Calvin in commenting on Romans 5:15 made comments such as 'that the grace procured by Christ belongs to a greater number than the condemnation contracted by the first man."

Romans 5:15 - "But the free gift is not like the transgression. For if by the transgression of the one the many died, much more did the grace of God and the gift by the grace of the one Man, Jesus Christ, abound to the many" (NASB)

So, how do we intrepret this verse?

I have not considered that Rom 5:15 was addressing quantity of individuals but rather extent of the damage caused by Adam's transgression vs. the extent of the grace extended to the redemption of sinners (the elect) through Christ's atonement.

Sooooo, first let's look at the text and use the 'logic' of what the opposing view contends the text says, i.e., quantity of those affected by Adam vs. Christ. One must first ask the question in regard to "the many died" from the transgression of "the one" [Adam]. Who was affected by the Fall of Adam? We know from the passage's context and from consulting other passages of Scripture that "the many" was ALL OF MANKIND! Everyone sinned in Adam and thus by consequence ALL die. In short, every man, woman and child that has been conceived since the Fall without exception are included in "the many died". Hopefully, that truth cannot be disputed. And therefore, by simple logic if nothing else, which the text goes on to show, the "abound to the many" cannot be of greater number of individuals than "the many died". Make sense? grin

William Hendriksen goes into detail explaining the true meaning of the text in his New Testament Commentary - Romans:

Quote
In these verses Paul shows that the parallel Adam-Christ is mainly one of contrast, in the sense that Christ's influence for the good far outweighs Adam's effectiveness for evil: the free gift is "not like the trespass," that is, is far more effective than the trespass.

By way of introduction to the further interpretation a few matters should be kept in mind:
a. The apostle uses the word many in a two-fold sense. In its first use ("the man died") it indicates all of Adam's physical descendants. At the close of that same verse ("overflow to the many") it indicates all those who belong to Christ. This reminds one of Isa. 43:11, 12; Matt. 20:28; Mark 10:45.
b. Verse 12 has shown that Adam was responsible for bringing into the world two evils: sin and death. The apostle deals with both of these in turn: with Adam's sin or trespass (verses 15, 16), with death (verse 17). He conceives of them as being intimately related, and therefore at times mentions both in one breath.

It is understandable that Paul can say that by reason of Adam's trespass the many died. These many are those designated in 5:12 as "all mankind" (literally all human beings, everybody). Cf. 1Cor. 1522. But, in connection with the work of God in Christ, for God's children this evil has been more than canceled out. For them God's grace and his gift of salvation changed death into its very opposite. Death became a gain (Phil. 1:21)! Moreover, as to , when grace entered, it more than merely returned man to his former state of innocence. It bestowed on him righteousness (verse 17), and life (verse 18), that is everlasting life (verse 21). For the glorious content of this term see above, on 2:7.

Again, in Adam's case a single sin was involved, a sin that resulted in condemnation. But Christ, by his work of redemption, made provision for the forgiveness not only of that one sin but also of all those that followed from it. His sacrifice sufficed for them all, and in fact wqas efficacious for all the sins committed by those who, by sovereign grace, were to place their trust in him. For them condemnation was replaced by justification. See on 1:17; 3:24; 5:1.

Hendriksen then continues to address the matter of death as he did for the trespass/sin vs. the life found through Christ.


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