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#8625 Tue Dec 09, 2003 4:43 PM
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In another forum, I posted that the majority of Reformed are a-mill in their eschatology, but that within recent decades post-mill is becoming popular, mainly in the Theonomy ranks. <br><br>Is that statement correct, partially or completely wrong?


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In reply to:
posted that the majority of Reformed are a-mill in their eschatology, but that within recent decades post-mill is becoming popular, mainly in the Theonomy ranks.

Is that statement correct, partially or completely wrong?

John,

I would say "partially" correct. grin The problem that always comes up is that the term "Amillennialism" wasn't always used to describe the view as it does in modern days. See the somewhat lengthy "Brief History . . ." below. Also, there are many Postmillennialists who do not embrace full-blown Bahnsenian "Theonomy/Reconstructionism". There are several brothers on this Board who are decidedly Postmil but reject Theonomy.

A BRIEF HISTORY OF AMILLENNIALISM


The view which today is known as Amillennialism has a long history of advocacy going back to the beginning of the Christian era. Since the fourth and fifth centuries, it has been the predominant position within the Christian church. Though Premillennialism has had its advocates throughout the history of the Christian church and has enjoyed a resurgence recently among conservative evangelicals in North America, it is safe to say that Amillennialism has been the consensus position of the largest portion of the Christian church. Louis Berkhof is correct when he remarks as follows regarding Amillennialism:

Some Premillenarians have spoken of Amillennialism as a new view and as one of the most recent novelties, but this is certainly not in accord with the testimony of history. The name is new indeed, but the view to which it is applied is as old as Christianity. It had at least as many advocates as Chiliasm among the Church Fathers of the second and third centuries, supposed to have been the heyday of Chiliasm. It has ever since been the view most widely accepted, is the only view that is either expressed or implied in the great historical Confessions of the Church, and has always been the prevalent view in Reformed circles)1

Though Berkhof does not mention the claim of many present-day postmillennialists that Amillennialism, not Postmillennialism, is the relative newcomer, his observations are applicable to this claim.

It is generally agreed that though the view known today as Amillennialism was already present in the earliest period of the Christian church, the great church father, Augustine, was instrumental in establishing this view as the predominant one. By treating the millennium of Revelation 20 as a symbolical description of the church’s growth in the present age, Augustine gave impetus to the amillennialist contention that the millennium does not follow chronologically the early history of the New Testament church. With the exception of some exponents of Premillennialism, the tenets of amillennialist teaching prevailed throughout the Middle Ages and during the Reformation. The Reformers were aligned with this broad tradition, though soon after the Reformation advocates of Postmillennialism arose especially within the Reformed tradition.

However strong the influence of Postmillennialism may have been within the Reformed churches, especially in North America during the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, the predominant view today is that of Amillennialism. Though advocates of Postmillennialism are found among the Reformed churches, and though the majority of conservative evangelicals in North America are premillennialists, the prevailing view among the Reformed churches and the Christian church, broadly conceived, remains that of Amillennialism.2 Where the historic creeds and confessions address themselves to the subject of the future, they are more congenial to an amillennialist view than to the other major millennial views. This is true of the Reformed confessions, though they do not explicitly address some of the differences between Amillennialism and Postmillennialism.3

Footnotes

1. Systematic Theology, p. 708. The following sources offer representative presentations of the amillennial view: A. Hoekema, The Bible and the Future; idem, ‘Amillennialism’, in The Meaning of the Millennium, ed. Robert G. Clouse, pp. 155-88; G. Vos, The Pauline Eschatology; G. C. Berkouwer, The Return of Christ; William E. Cox, Amillennialism Today (Philadelphia: Presbyterian and Reformed, 1972); William Hendriksen, More Than Conquerors (Grand Rapids: Baker, 1939); and Robert B. Strimple, ‘Amillennialism’, in Three Views on the Millennium and Beyond, ed. Darrell L. Bock, pp. 81-129.

2. Though the Roman Catholic and Eastern Orthodox churches do not have a dogmatic position on the millennium, their traditions have commonly identified the kingdom of Christ with the church during the present age. If the term applies, therefore, they are amillennial in outlook.

3. The one exception to this pattern may be the Second Helvetic Confession of 1566. This confession was first written by Heinrich Bullinger, Zwingli’s successor and an influential Reformer in his own right, and later adopted by the Swiss Reformed churches as a confession of their faith. Next to the Heidelberg Catechism, it has been the most popular Reformed confession among the international family of Reformed churches. This confession seems to condemn Postmillennialism when it declares: ‘Moreover we condemn the Jewish dreams that before the day of judgement there shall be a golden age in the earth, and that the godly shall possess the kingdoms of the world, their wicked enemies being trodden under foot; for the evangelical truth (Matt. 24 and 25, Luke 21), and the apostolic doctrine (in the Second Epistle to the Thessalonians 2, and in the Second Epistle to Timothy 3 and 4) are found to teach far otherwise’ (Chap. 11; quoted from The Creeds of Christendom, ed. Philip Schaff (1931; reprint, Grand Rapids: Baker, 1985], III: p. 853.
In His Grace,


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I think what the church is starting to recognize in this area is the significance of 70 A.D. as it applies to the Olivet Discourse. <br><br>Ron

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Ron, <br><br>You are referencing the partial preterist view which is becoming popular. <br><br>A question - Does the partial preteriest view require that John wrote his Revelation before 70 AD, not around 95 AD that has been the more dominant view?


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<blockquote><font size=1>In reply to:</font><hr>[color:"blue"]Ron, <br><br>You are referencing the partial preterist view which is becoming popular. <br><br>A question - Does the partial preteriest view require that John wrote his Revelation before 70 AD, not around 95 AD that has been the more dominant view? <br><br>John Chaney</font><hr></blockquote><p><br><br>Yes, I am, John. <br><br>I don't see any contradiction between partial preterism and a late dating of the book of Revelation. Do you think that presents a problem?<br><br>Ron<br>

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I really don't fully understand partial preterist, although others have tried to explain it to me. I just had the opinion that most advocates of partial preteriest believed in the early dating of John, in the late 60s AD. <br><br>In a way it appears as the advocates of partial preteriest are developing a new theory, just as the hated dispensational pre-mills did in the early part of the 20th century. Is it one extreme to another?


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<blockquote><font size=1>In reply to:</font><hr>[color:"blue"]I really don't fully understand partial preterist, although others have tried to explain it to me. I just had the opinion that most advocates of partial preteriest believed in the early dating of John, in the late 60s AD. <br><br>In a way it appears as the advocates of partial preteriest are developing a new theory, just as the hated dispensational pre-mills did in the early part of the 20th century. Is it one extreme to another? </font><hr></blockquote><p><br><br>Oh no, this is not new at all. Calvin, Matthew Henry and other notables held to this view. In a nutshell, it sees Matthew's account of the Olivet Discourse the same as Luke's. Jesus said that "all these things" would be fulfilled in the generation of his hearers. Just as he promised, the temple was destroyed. Many a dispensationalist appreciates that Luke's gospel is referring to 70 A.D. However, they deny that Matthew was referring to the same catastrophic events. I could get into the details of their reasoning if you like, but I'd probably put most people to sleep.<br><br>Blessings,<br><br>Ron<br><br>

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Ron,<br><br>Is it not also true that it is possible to hold to a Partial Preterist interpretation, at least to a certain degree and yet hold to Amillennialism on the main? [img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/grin.gif" alt="grin" title="grin[/img] Wouldn't Jay E. Adams be in this group?<br><br>


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Pilgrim,<br><blockquote><font size=1>In reply to:</font><hr>[color:"blue"]Is it not also true that it is possible to hold to a Partial Preterist interpretation, at least to a certain degree and yet hold to Amillennialism on the main? Wouldn't Jay E. Adams be in this group?</font><hr></blockquote><p><br><br>Yes. Dr. Robert Reymond takes a partial-preterist approach in the Olivet Discourse, and appears to follow Hendriksen's approach in the Book of Revelation. I believe Jay Adams is also a partial-preterist/Amil. <br><br><br>in Christ,<br>Carlos<br>

Last edited by carlos; Tue Dec 09, 2003 7:43 PM.

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Ron, <br><br>Thanks for your responses. I might show my ignorance but bare with me. I still have further questions/observations. Others may want to jump aboard on this as well. Let's leave Dispy Pre-mill out of it for now. <br><br>Since many will agree that prophecy in the Olivet discourse were fulfilled including the Temple being destroyed in 70 AD, what are partial preterist trying to say beyond that? It must be more to it. Throughout the Bible, many prophecies had/will have a double fulfillment. Does that come into play in reading Matthew 24. Is it possible to be a partial preteriest and not be a post-mill? What does the partial preteriest share with full preterism. I realize full preterism is an heresy, but is there some common ground between the two? <br><br>I just don't understand why so many make such a big deal in being a partial preteriest, especially in light of Pilgrim's insert on a-mill below. <br><br>I guess I may never understand these issues.

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John,<br><br>You keep this up and you will end up being a PanMillennialist!! People who hold to that view believe that everything will pan out in the end! [Linked Image]<br><br>


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Out of curiosity (and a little ignorance, for that matter [img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/smile.gif" alt="smile" title="smile[/img]), what is this Olivet discourse to which you guys are referring? it may be something obvious that i'm just passing over, here. <br>troy


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<blockquote><font size=1>In reply to:</font><hr>[color:"blue"]what is this Olivet discourse to which you guys are referring?</font><hr></blockquote><p>Matthew chapters 24 and 25. [img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/grin.gif" alt="grin" title="grin[/img]<br><br>


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Pan-Mill is the only one with 100% certainty.<br><br>Although I put myself in the a-mill camp (mainly because my spiritual disciplers were), I see this as applying to Deuteronomy 29:29 in that much of these matters belong to the secret things of God. 1 Thessolonians addresses much of the basics that Scripture reveals to us.


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Yup, definitely a question of ignorance[img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/smile.gif" alt="smile" title="smile[/img] man do i fell sheepish!


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Actually I line up with the Pro-mil view, i don't know when or if, but i'm all for it!<br>troy


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John_C,<br><br>Here is a summary, with a table, that highlights some of the differences and similarities of the two views. I'm sure RonD will fill in anything that is missing or that he disagrees. <br>Partial_Preterism<br>(I definitely don't recommend anything on this site; I consider "full-preterism" or "Hyper-preterism" as outbounds of Orthodox). <br>Also, if you really want to dig in, just find the works of Ken Gentry or David Chilton( that is David Chilton before he crossed over to full-preterism shortly before his death).<br>One of his works is on-line:<br>http://www.freebooks.com/sidefrm2.htm ( it's called "Paradise Restored")<br><br>Btw, I am Amil all the way. If you do want a well done exposition of matthew 24 from a non-preterist perspective, see either the works of Herman N. Ridderbos' "coming of the kingdom", Kim Riddlebarger's "The case for Amil", or D.A Carson's commentary on Matthew 24.<br><br><br>in Christ,<br>Carlos

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Pilgrim,<br><br>Absolutely. Jay Adams is a perfect example in fact. So is Jason1646 for the most part. I'm still trying to figure him out though![img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/shrug.gif" alt="shrug" title="shrug[/img] Jason?<br><br>Ron<br>

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I might add, most partials see a transition verse in verse 36 of Matthew 24. It is asserted that the transition takes the reader from a discussion on the immediate, pending judgment upon Israel, which was fulfilled in 70 A.D., to one on the final eschaton, which is to occur at the end of the this age. I find this most agreeable. <br><br>My 2 cents.<br><br>Ron<br>

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p.s [img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/idea.gif" alt="idea" title="idea[/img] I would highly recommend J. Marcellus Kik's book, "An Eschatology of Victory." You can skip over the postmillenialism section(s) if you like [img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/nono.gif" alt="nono" title="nono[/img] [img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/readit.gif" alt="readit" title="readit[/img], and go straight to the 100 plus page interaction with Matthew 24. It is a most interesting read and a great gift for any dispensationalist.[img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/rofl.gif" alt="rofl" title="rofl[/img] Kik, by the way, pastored churches in Canada for twenty years. So, I suppose he can't be all bad! [img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/laugh.gif" alt="laugh" title="laugh[/img]<br><br>Ron

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You can find Gentry's critique of "Full (hyper) Preterism here: A Brief Theological Analysis of Hyper-Preterism.<br><br>For another detailed exposition of Matthew 24, from an Amil perspective, see here: A Defense of (Reformed) Amillennialism.<br><br>In His Grace,


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Whoa! Big words...hurt eyes...brain exploding...MUST PURGE!!!

Could you all explain some of those really big words (most of which end in -ism)?

Postmillenialism -

Premillenialism -

Amillenialism -

Partial and Full Preterist -

Dispensationalism -


Man. That was a lot of typing. I used six dashes in that post. I have to go lie down now.


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In reply to:
[color:"blue"]Whoa! Big words...hurt eyes...brain exploding...MUST PURGE!!!

Could you all explain some of those really big words (most of which end in -ism)?



Let me put it this way:

Postmillennialism A+ [img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/thewave.gif" alt="thewave" title="thewave[/img]

Partial Preterist A + [img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/yep.gif" alt="yep" title="yep[/img]

Amillennialism A- [img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/joy.gif" alt="joy" title="joy[/img]

Premillennialism C- [img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/crazy.gif" alt="crazy" title="crazy[/img]

Dispensationalism D- [img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/dizzy.gif" alt="dizzy" title="dizzy[/img] [img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/sad.gif" alt="sad" title="sad[/img]

Full Preterist F- [img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/nono.gif" alt="nono" title="nono[/img] [img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/nope.gif" alt="nope" title="nope[/img]

Ron [img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/grin.gif" alt="grin" title="grin[/img]


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Let me add that my Postmillennialism is rather incidental. What I do think is a wonderful and blessed tool though is the partial preterist view of Matthew 24. <br><br>Ron

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Nathan,

Here is a chart that describes dispensational premillennialism, historic premillennialism, postmillennialism, and amillennialism: Eschatology Chart. (A good website, over all, I'll mention.)

As for preterism, from what I understand, it's the belief that the prophecies associated with the end-times have already been fulfilled. Hyper-preterists say that it's all been fulfilled, whereas partial preterists say that some of it has been fulfilled, and some is yet to be fulfilled.


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Kyle,<br><br>Thanks! That is very helpful! About the amil view, I have trouble believing Satan is not deceiving the nations today. Does that mean the amil believes that we are in the end times?


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<blockquote><font size=1>In reply to:</font><hr>[color:"blue"] Absolutely. Jay Adams is a perfect example in fact. So is Jason1646 for the most part. I'm still trying to figure him out though! Jason?</font><hr></blockquote><p><br><br>Yeah, I'm still trying to figure out Jason too. [img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/scratch.gif" alt="scratch" title="scratch[/img]<br><br>Yes, I would say that for the most part I agree with the partial preterist interpretation of the Olivet Discourse even though I would be labeled as an Amil by a good number of Postmils. I also happen to think that the late dating for Revelation is compelling.<br><br>Regards,<br><br>~Jason<br><br>

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sbc_and_reformed,<br><br>Here are very able defenses of Revelations 20 in regards to the binding of satan. These wil explain what Amil believes the "binding of Satan" to mean. Please Jump to the appropriate sections.<br>Binding of Satan_Cornelius_Venema <br>Reigning with Christ<br><br>Considering the nature of book of revelation, the exegesis provided and the plethra of scripture provided in support by these works, I think that amil view is quite plausible. See G. K. Beale's Commentary on Revelation for an extensive treatment.<br><br>in Christ,<br>Carlos

Last edited by carlos; Tue Dec 09, 2003 9:53 PM.

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Greetings SBC,<br><br>Keep in mind that the Scriptures often employ absolute language to draw strong relative contrasts. Satan is of course still working in the world, but he has been bound, and he cannot deceive the nations as he did prior to the New Covenant. He no longer has free reign over the ignorant world. Jesus taught that the strong man must be bound in order to plunder his goods (Matthew 12:29) and this began with the apostolic ministry, where Jesus "saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven." (Luke 10:18). Satan has been bound during this interadvental period and will only be unleashed again just prior to the Second Coming.<br><br>Sincerely in Christ,<br><br>~Jason<br>

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Thanks!<br><br>So "the nations" means the Gentiles, as it so often does? That makes sense. Both Gentiles and Jews can now receive the Gospel.<br><br>The part about the term "thousand" is also intriguing. I thought about why we can take the days in Genesis literally and not the thousand years, but there in Genesis the text says, "And there was evening and there was morning, one day." To me, the text tells us to take the "day" literally.<br><br>According to the amil position, when is Armageddon? What is the mark of the Beast? Which passages pertain to the destruction of the Temple, and which pertain to the time of tribulation before Christ returns?<br><br>Also, what eschatological view did Spurgeon ascribe to?<br><br>Marie<br><br>


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<blockquote><font size=1>In reply to:</font><hr>[color:"blue"]...the late dating for Revelation is compelling.</font><hr></blockquote><p><br><br>[img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/weep.gif" alt="weep" title="weep[/img]<br><br>Ron<br>

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I did enjoy Kiks book , but the main problem I have with post-mil is their hope for better times prior to our Lords return.<br><br>Since the Fall , to my mind at least, each generation is more depraved than the last. In other words , we are still falling and although the Elect will always be called , there are far more Reprobates around with each coming generation .<br><br>Biblical Christianity (Calvinism) appears to be in regression these last couple of Centuries - in the Western world at least . Perhaps Russia and China will be the new champions of Calvinism a couple of thousand years hence ?<br><br>I hoped The Lord Jesus Christ would return yesterday and put everyone where we belong.<br>No matter , perhaps He will come today.<br><br>Rev 22:20,21kjv<br>

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The Earthly Messianic Kingdom (Millenium) is taught in the Apocrypha ( Enoch, Baruch,2 Edras) but not of a fixed 1000 year duration.<br><br>Revelation 20 is spiritual and figurative , including the 1000 years. See ; Deut 1:11, 7:9, 32:30 , Psalm 90:4, 91:7, 105:8, Eccl 6:6, Isa 30:17, 60:22 , 2 Peter 3:8. (kjv)<br><br>Hitlers third reich was going to last a 1000 years - by this , Hitler meant forever . Fortunately , it lasted only 12 years !<br><br>I personally believe the Beast to be Rome and the False prophet to be Islam and we are living in the Tribulation today.

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Marie, <br><br>I will let others answer these questions as I need to start getting ready for work soon. You may want to get William Hendriksen's book, More Than Conquerors - An Interpretation of the Book of Revelation . I'm pretty sure he is a-mill and he does a verse-by-verse commentary in the book. (I have the book, but have not read it - just browsed thus far)


John Chaney

"having been firmly rooted and now being built up in Him and established in your faith . . ." Colossians 2:7
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I too have this book but like you , I have only browsed. Tis one of Pilgrims favourite books on Revelation I believe.<br><br>For the Islam issue , I have : Islam in Revelation: An Historic look at Protestant Eschatological thought on the rise and fall of Islam by EB Elliot (1862), Alexander M'Leod (1814), David Steel (1870), George Faber (1811) and Thomas Newton (1817). It is published by Still Waters Revival Books and each chapter can be viewed (I think !) at:<br><br>http://www.swrb.com/catalog/E.htm<br><br>http://www.swrb.com/catalog/M.htm<br><br>http://www.swrb.com/catalog/S.htm<br><br>http://www.swrb.com/catalog/F.htm<br><br>http://www.swrb.com/catalog/N.htm

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It helps me to think of the events of 70 A.D. as a part of Christ's first coming rather than some kind of "in between judgement-coming" that isn't really a "second coming." Think of it as the close of His first advent instead. I look at it that way because the signs (charismaton) persisted for that single 40-year period between the ascension and the destruction of the Temple, and because Jesus specifically said that those events would happen to that generation which had rejected Him and upon which God placed the guilt of all righteous blood shed on earth, from Abel to Zechariah (Mt 23:35). After the Olivet prophecy was fulfilled (and the covenant signs - charismaton - of the close of the Old Covenant and commencement of the new) stopped, the "fist advent" of Christ was complete.<br><br>In His Olivent discourse the Lord referred to Daniel's prophecy, "the abomination of desolation (Mt 24:15)" standing in the holy place. Daniel's prophecy refers to the invasion of Solomon's Temple by Antiochus Epiphanes, who stood in the Temple and declared himself divine. Yet even though Daniel's prophecy was fulfilled long before Christ was born, Christ refers to another fulfillment of Daniel's prophecy yet future to His audience - the events of 70 A.D. which were a repeat of Antiochus Epiphanes' blasphemy.<br><br>Most "partial" preterists (and I prefer to use the term orthodox preterists because the other term was coined to make us OPs appear to believe only part of what the Bible teaches) believe that there is yet a future fulfilment of the very same prophecies. <br><br>It helps me put it all in perspective to think of the first fulfilment of Matt 23-24 as part of the Lord's first advent.<br><br>-Robin<br>

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Oops! I meant to say early! I should stop posting right before bed. [img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/crazy.gif" alt="crazy" title="crazy[/img]<br><br><br>~Jason<br>

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<blockquote><font size=1>In reply to:</font><hr>[color:"blue"]I did enjoy Kiks book , but the main problem I have with post-mil is their hope for better times prior to our Lords return.<br><br>Since the Fall , to my mind at least, each generation is more depraved than the last. In other words , we are still falling and although the Elect will always be called , there are far more Reprobates around with each coming generation.</font><hr></blockquote><p><br><br>We must keep in mind that we do not get our eschatology from the newspapers. Secondly, if we were to chart the progress of the church as a percentage of the entire world population, isn't the church growing faster than the kingdom of darkness as a percentage of the world's population? Consider the Christian population at Pentecost, when three thousand were baptized. Then consider the same population relative the kingdom of darkness prior to the Reformation. Now do so today. Finally, how the world appears is not the issue. After all, if Jesus died for every person that is born from this moment on, then the next generation will be Christian and God will ordain that they hear the gospel and come to Christ. In other words, salvation is of God. <br><br>Obviously, this was not intended to be an argument for an optimistic view of the kingdom. Rather, my comments are intended to simply point out that the trend supports a "Christianized" world more than status quo, and that the progress of the church is dependent solely upon the will of God (even as it pertains to the question of for whom Christ died). Having said all that, I do know that it is our hearts' desire that the Kingdom prosper in this world beyond measure. "Thy Kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven."<br><br>In His Grace,<br><br>Ron<br><br><br>

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<blockquote><font size=1>In reply to:</font><hr>[color:"blue"]Oops! I meant to say early! I should stop posting right before bed. [img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/crazy.gif" alt="crazy" title="crazy[/img]<br><br>~Jason</font><hr></blockquote><p><br><br>Really? [img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/joy.gif" alt="joy" title="joy[/img] I thought all that studying you were doing was making your head soft![img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/rofl.gif" alt="rofl" title="rofl[/img]<br><br>Ron<br><br>

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Yeah, I do. It's funny, you read Reymond on the subject and he gives a marvelous list of the internal and external evidence for an early date and then he gets to the end and essentially says, "but, I do not hold to it because there is this one other reference giving a late date from (Eusebius?)". I don't remember the exact church father, I lent out my Reymond book and have not received it back yet. [img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/sad.gif" alt="sad" title="sad[/img]. In any event, I remember laughing out loud when I read it because I just couldn't believe that was his conclusion.<br><br>~Jason<br>

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Perhaps in the developing world Christianity is growing but not so in the developed world.<br><br>England for example, used to be known as a "christian" country throughout the world. Now its post-christian - the same thing is happenning in the USA too.<br><br>Islam is the fastest growing religion in the world today I believe . 15 churches a week in the UK are closing down whereas mosques are still being built here.<br><br>This is however Gods Will being done and therefore I am quite content .

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Jason,<br><br>I didn't laugh when I read his conclusion -- I was dismayed. As you say, Reymond simply presented the facts; then facts presented the case for an early date and then his conclusion (or should I say concluding assertion) was "I am inclined toward a late date because I do not believe that the judgments of the book can be restricted in their applications primarily, if not exclusively, to Israel." In other words, he argued well for an early date only to conclude with a late dating. Even if the late dating is the correct one, Reymond certainly never argued for it.<br><br>Ron<br>

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<blockquote><font size=1>In reply to:</font><hr>[color:"blue"]Islam is the fastest growing religion in the world today I believe.</font><hr></blockquote><p><br><br>Howard,<br><br>This is completely irrelevant. When someone converts to Islam, an unbeliever simply gets relabeled. If all the pagans in the world became Muslim, how would this mean that the kingdom of darkness is growing by percentage? All it would mean is that they are getting more organized under the same banner.<br><br>Blessings,<br><br>Ron<br>

#8668 Wed Dec 10, 2003 8:41 AM
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Good point Ron , but pagans are no threat to to christians .<br><br>(I do believe I've taken this thread off topic.)

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Dear Marie:<br><br><blockquote><font size=1>In reply to:</font><hr>[color:"blue"]Also, what eschatological view did Spurgeon ascribe to?</font><hr></blockquote><p> Though some dispute it, my reading indicates that Spurgeon was Historical Premillenial, as was the Apostle John, according to Polycarp, his student and Irenaus, Polycarp's student.<br><br>By the way, I know that last statement is not the popular view here, and I have no intention of debating it, but rather offer it as my own understanding to your question.<br><br>In Him,<br><br>Gerry<br>

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Ron,
In reply to:
In other words, he argued well for an early date only to conclude with a late dating.Even if the late dating is the correct one, Reymond certainly never argued for it.



I came to a different conclusion. He seemed to play middle man in IMHO. Maybe I misundestood him, but in the sections that he would present an argument from an 'Early Date' defender( e.g. quoted Ken Gentry a few times), he would then follow up with an from a 'Late Date' defender(e.g. Hendriksen, Fowler, etc.). He seemed to play the fence,though in my view he seemed to favor the late date in those sections. Perhaps I was reading too much into the rebutalls to the early data. Yes, I would agree that his last few sentences were a low point. It is almost as if he just put his hand in a bag and pulled up a number. Nevertheless, I believe his outline and summary of the book of Revelations was outstanding. If you want a thorough defense of the late dating, see G. K. Beale's Commentary.

in Christ,
Carlos



"Let all that mind...the peace and comfort of their own souls, wholly apply themselves to the study of Jesus Christ, and him crucified"(Flavel)
#8671 Wed Dec 10, 2003 9:03 AM
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(Polycarp and Iranaeus held to Infant Baptism BTW , so perhaps the Apostle John did too methinks stupidme

laugh

#8672 Wed Dec 10, 2003 9:26 AM
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In reply to:
Good point Ron , but pagans are no threat to to christians .



Howard,

I'm clear on the first part thanks but I'm not sure what you are saying after the "but".

Thanks,

Ron


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In reply to:
Yes, I would agree that his last few sentences were a low point. It is almost as if he just put his hand in a bag and pulled up a number. Nevertheless, I believe his outline and summary of the book of Revelations was outstanding.



Carlos,

Well stated! I wonder if he improved on this portion in the revised addition, which I am told is substantially longer.

In His Grace,

Ron


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In reply to:
I came to a different conclusion. He seemed to play middle man in IMHO. Maybe I misundestood him, but in the sections that he would present an argument from an 'Early Date' defender( e.g. quoted Ken Gentry a few times), he would then follow up with an from a 'Late Date' defender(e.g. Hendriksen, Fowler, etc.). He seemed to play the fence,though in my view he seemed to favor the late date in those sections. Perhaps I was reading too much into the rebutalls to the early data.



Carlos,

Your assessment is correct. I stand corrected. Thank you. Reymond did play the middle man. The point I should have made was that he gave an extremely fair and thorough treatment of the early dating argument, which I thought was very persuasive indeed (to put it mildly). It was not that "he" argued for an early date, which is what I said, but rather the facts he presented, in my estimation, argued for an early date. I could have made this more clear. Then his conclusion, as you say, was pulled out of hat as it were.

Cordially,

Ron


#8675 Wed Dec 10, 2003 10:36 AM
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Sorry Ron.

Moslem countries generally do not encourage Christianity . I believe Christianity is 'forbidden' in some of them ?

Most non-Moslem countries permit the spread of the gospel (even China- more so each year) without too much hinderance .

Islam breeds Islam and the more stronghold it has the less stronghold the gospel has amongst them.

Of course , I know Gods will is being done on earth as it is in heaven , but from where I am stood , Islam will overtake Christianity in sheer numbers for the next few hundred years or so IMHO.

Roman Catholicism was Christianities biggest enemy for an entire age and Islam is our threat today and will be for quite some time perhaps.

Are there more saved people than unsaved alive today ?

What about a 1000 years ago , or 3000 , or a thousand years from now ?

Each passing day , I believe that more people reject Christ than accept Him .

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Ron,<br><br>Thanks for the kind words[img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/bravo.gif" alt="bravo" title="bravo[/img]. I have the revised edition. However, I don't have the first edition. Obviously, I can't comment on the differences. Although treatment is indeed substantial. I've not seen any systematics that even comes close to devoting as many pages to the book of Revelation<br>The treatment on the whole section on Revelation can almost be compared to an 'Introduction to the book of Revelation' that we see in commentaries. In fact, If my memory serves me right, it's probably longer than the one in "Introduction to the New Testament" by Leon Morris, D. Carson, and Douglas Moo.<br><br>in Christ,<br>Carlos<br>


"Let all that mind...the peace and comfort of their own souls, wholly apply themselves to the study of Jesus Christ, and him crucified"(Flavel)
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Ron,

In reply to:
It was not that "he" argued for an early date, which is what I said, but rather the facts he presented, in my estimation, argued for an early date. I could have made this more clear. Then his conclusion, as you say, was pulled out of hat as it were



I understand what you are saying now.

in Christ,
Carlos



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Marie,

Spurgeon was historic Premil as Gerry Indicated.
Here's an extensive treament on Spurgeon's eschatology by a historic premil defender.
Charles H. Spurgeon and Eschatology:
Did He Have a Discernible Millennial Position?


In regards to idea of "literal" 1000 years, read the whole book of Revelation and you will note the "SYMBOLISM" in the apocalyptic literature, even in regards to numbers. Please see the Venema article that I provided the link for . He states the case for the symbolism of 1000 years far better that I can.

In reply to:
According to the amil position, when is Armageddon? What is the mark of the Beast? Which passages pertain to the destruction of the Temple, and which pertain to the time of tribulation before Christ returns?


Rather than me answering with just one liners, I think it's much better that you get an overview of each chapter surrounding some of those issues. Here are excellent sermons by Dr. Kim Riddlebarger on those questions.
Armageddon

For mark of the beast:
Rev_13
Rev_14
(Also see Hoeksema's treament, Mark of the Beast)

As far as the issues relation to the destruction of the temple, you will have to get from someone who defends from a partial-preterist point of view. I believe that David Chilton's "Vengeance of Days" is online.

As to nature of the book of revelation, see Anthony Hoekema's writings that is on the Highway. It's good read and should answer some of the other questions, from an Amil perspective. [img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/readit.gif" alt="readit" title="readit[/img]
Revelation_Amil

This should keep you busy for a few weeks [img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/laugh.gif" alt="laugh" title="laugh[/img]. Take up and Read!

in Christ,
Carlos





"Let all that mind...the peace and comfort of their own souls, wholly apply themselves to the study of Jesus Christ, and him crucified"(Flavel)
#8679 Wed Dec 10, 2003 5:55 AM
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In reply to:
Sorry Ron



No need to be sorry.

In reply to:
Moslem countries generally do not encourage Christianity . I believe Christianity is 'forbidden' in some of them ?



So? Is it not true that if Christ died for every person born from this moment on, the Middle East will come to Christ in mass rather soon?

In reply to:
Islam breeds Islam and the more stronghold it has the less stronghold the gospel has amongst them.



What in your estimation is an ideal backdrop for irresistible grace and the effectual call of dead men who are elect? Dead in sin is dead in sin.

In reply to:
Of course , I know Gods will is being done on earth as it is in heaven , but from where I am stood , Islam will overtake Christianity in sheer numbers for the next few hundred years or so IMHO.



Again, you have simply ignored the fact that the unconverted are equally dead, whether they're Islamic or Roman Catholic or liberal Protestant. Accordingly, you should be arguing that unbelief will overtake the truth in sheer numbers, etc. However, the issue is not numbers per se, but percentages. Isn't Christianity (i.e. numbers of professing evangelicals) growing at a faster rate than unbelief?

In reply to:
Roman Catholicism was Christianities biggest enemy for an entire age and Islam is our threat today and will be for quite some time perhaps.



Perhaps, but so what? Roman Catholicism and Islam are just more specific appellations for unbelief. For some reason you will not address this issue.

In reply to:
Are there more saved people than unsaved alive today ?



Yes, but, again, so what? Again, we are supposed to be talking about saved people divided by total people vs. unsaved people divided by total people as a trend over time. I’ll grant you that the percentage of Christians can grow even substantially year over year as the delta between unbelievers and believers widens significantly since there are more unbelievers in the world than believers. However, eventually won’t the sheer number of Christians overcome the number of unbelievers? Let’s say that both the unbelieving and believing population doubles every year, yet the believing population also in addition to doubling realizes just a slight increase in percentage over the previous year. Although the delta between believers and unbelievers will widen significantly at first, won’t the spread between the two groups become closer together in time and the believing population even overcome the unbelieving population in sheer numbers eventually?

In reply to:

What about a 1000 years ago , or 3000 , or a thousand years from now ?



The trend favors an optimistic view, but as I said, we should not base our eschatological outlook upon such things as trends. I only labor the point because your initial remark, and all subsequent remarks, suggests that the trend is contrary to an optimistic view of the kingdom.

In reply to:
Each passing day , I believe that more people reject Christ than accept Him .



I wonder whether you are trying to say that Christians are breeding non-Christians at a faster rate than new converts are being made. Whatever you are saying, the gospel was only rediscovered in all its glory just 450 years ago. Look what has happened since time!

In His Service,

Ron


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I just hope he revises the part about the Trinity that was found wanting in his systematic !


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?

Ron

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Re-read what he has to say about the Trinity.....


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Ron you said "is it not true that if Christ died for every person born from this moment on, the middle east will come to Christ in mass rather soon ?" [img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/dizzy.gif" alt="dizzy" title="dizzy[/img]<br><br>The heart and the world is the backdrop for irresistible grace. <br><br>All unconverted are of course equally dead but Islam hinders the Gospel - as God has, for His reasons, intended. An unconverted Muslim is a threat to the "visible" Church, ie, you and me, now in the flesh. The false prophet is a different kind of adversary than anti-christian Rome. It does not set out to deceive the elect as Rome does. It does not hide its hatred for Christ and His people and contempt for other non-muslims. Pagan unbelief offers little threat to the "visible" Church.<br><br>I fear you belittle your foes of Roman Catholicism and Islam. I would strongly advise you to study the ethos of these lethal weapons from Satans armory before you dismiss them as "More specific appellations for unbelief"<br><br>Praise God for the last 450 years and beyond ! And Praise God for the next 450 years which are going to get a lot rougher, if He permits them to happen of course.<br><br>How much faith will there be on earth when Christ returns ? [Luke 18:1-8 KJV] I don't know do you ?<br><br>

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Marie,

Below are some excerps from Grant's Osborne's commentary regarding numbers in Revelation. Osborne writes,

...Let us consider the meaning of numbers in the book. There are four major numbers from which the vast majority of numbers derive - 4,7,10,12. While some (Seiss, [John] Walvoord, [Robert]Thomas) tend to consider them literally, they are forced to some creative interpretations, for example, regarding the 144,000 who are sealed in [Rev] 7:4-8. Walvoord believes this means that the 12,000 sealed in each tribe are those selected to be God's special witnesses through the tribulation period. But it seems more likely that he numbers in the book are meant symbolically, as was common in ancient apocalypses. Each of the number tends to signify wholeness or completeness throughout scripture, as in the four corners of the earth or the four winds, the use of seven throughout Scripture, or the twelve tribes and twelve apostles . Bauckham has done an extensive study of the language of the book and has shown how often terms and ideas occur four times ( four corners [Rev 7:1;20:8], four winds [7:1]...or seven times (The seven spirits; sevenfold doxologies; seven seals, trumpets, and bowls; seven beautitudes...As Bauckham concludes, all these cannot merely be coincidental...We cannot insist on a literal meaning for the three and half years of the tribulation period or the thousand years of the millenium. They could be literal, but the numbers function symbolic in the book and probably signify a lengthy period of time that is under God's control...Multiples of tens were commonly used in Jewish writings symbolically, and it is likely that this[1000 years] refers to an indefiinite but perfect period of time...a symbol of completeness in the book.

(It must be noted that Osborne is historic Premil and an arminian. I would disagree with both, but I found these section(s) to well stated. G. K. Beale has an extensive treatment; though it would take a long time to type it all up. In any case, Venema's article should be sufficient as I stated in the previous post. I hope no one beats me up for quoting an arminian.[img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/smile.gif" alt="smile" title="smile[/img])

As far has the preterist approach that you asked about, Osborne writes,
"This approach argues that the details of the book relate to the present situation in which John lived rather than to a future period [most or all details are specific to that period of time, depending on full or partial preterism]. Thus the symbols refer to events in the first-century world as experienced by the original readers, and John is telling them how God would deliver them from their oppressors. There are three basic approaches to the book from within this school of thought...[one of the] option[s] is to take the book as written before A.D. 70 and phrophesysing the fall of Jerusalem as god's judgment upon apostate Israel for rejecting the Messiah and persecuting the church (So Gentry, Chilton). The beast is Rome, the kings from the east are the Roman generals who brought the Romans army from the eastern boundary of the empire to destroy Jerusalem, and Armageddon is the siege of Jerusalem itself...This third approach is least viable...because it limits the universal language of the book( all "peoples, languages, tribes, and nations") to the Jewish people." [Note in some, the chapters 19-22 refer to future, while others say all is fullfilled. As to specific details of the partial-preterist view in Revelation, David Chilton's "vengeance of days" should be sufficient. All comments in brackets are mine]

in Christ,
Carlos


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Joe,

In the prefaceto the second edition, Dr. Reymond writes, "I want to thank both my commenders and my critics for the time and effor tthey expended to review the work. All their critical comments were taken seriously, and often these comments led to a modification of expression or of conception." However, he does not go into much details so as to mention which specific sections were modified. I have not read his 130+ pages on the trinity. Based on that criticism from a while back, I'm not sure If I'm going to read it any time soon. I may do it to see if he did revise the section.

in Christ,
Carlos


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I have not purchased the new improved version yet....another $40 bucks or so...Of course, I disagree with more than just his doctrine of the Trinity.....Berkhof is still better IMHO overall and thus, I think I will stay with something my tried and IMHO more faithful to the text of Scripture. [Linked Image]


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Joe,

In reply to:
[color:"blue"]Of course, I disagree with more than just his doctrine of the Trinity..



So would I. I disagree with his treatment of Romans 7:14-25, his defense of supra [I can't spell this word, so I'm not going to even bother[img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/heavy.gif" alt="heavy" title="heavy[/img]. Although, certain sections I really like: Extent of the atonement, Soteriolgy, the Covenants, Federal Headship, Eschatalogy (minus the partial-preterism). In most, of these sections He quoted Hodge, Murray, Warfield, and Vos [ and perhaps that's why I like those onessmile
I have not read the other sections. So much things to read with so little time. Charle Hodge's systematics is still my favorite, minus the latin quotations.

in Christ,
Carlos



"Let all that mind...the peace and comfort of their own souls, wholly apply themselves to the study of Jesus Christ, and him crucified"(Flavel)
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In reply to:

Ron you said "is it not true that if Christ died for every person born from this moment on, the middle east will come to Christ in mass rather soon ?"

The heart and the world is the backdrop for irresistible grace.

All unconverted are of course equally dead but Islam hinders the Gospel - as God has, for His reasons, intended. An unconverted Muslim is a threat to the "visible" Church, ie, you and me, now in the flesh. The false prophet is a different kind of adversary than anti-christian Rome. It does not set out to deceive the elect as Rome does. It does not hide its hatred for Christ and His people and contempt for other non-muslims. Pagan unbelief offers little threat to the "visible" Church.

I fear you belittle your foes of Roman Catholicism and Islam. I would strongly advise you to study the ethos of these lethal weapons from Satans armory before you dismiss them as "More specific appellations for unbelief"

Praise God for the last 450 years and beyond ! And Praise God for the next 450 years which are going to get a lot rougher, if He permits them to happen of course.

How much faith will there be on earth when Christ returns ? [Luke 18:1-8 KJV] I don't know do you ?



Howard,

You posted my statement, but you haven't addressed. In fact, your response disorients the teleological relationship between those for whom Christ died and irresistible grace. In essence you are suggesting that Christ could not have died for everyone who will be born tomorrow simply because irresistible grace will not likely overcome the powers of Rome and Islam. Of course, when stated this way, you will deny the implications of your post. Notwithstanding, you simply dismiss the fact, by ignoring it, that God draws all those Christ died for. Instead, you have implied that Christ died for those who it seems feasible to you will likely stand a chance of being drawn.

At the very least, you might have dealt with the point that if the church is growing year after year in percentages, it is gaining on the kingdom of darkness.

I'll let you speak the last word. Again though, our eschatology is not derived from popular opinion but from the Scriptures. Finally, even if the amill. position were the biblical one, all amills (who hold to particular redemption and the rules of percentages) should agree with what I have said. My sole point has been that the world as we see it is not at odds with an optimistic view of the Kingdom, and in some very real and tangible ways, it supports it strictly on pragmatic grounds if you will.

In His Grace,
Ron


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That's what I thought. My pastor wrote the review.

Blessings,

Ron

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On the whole, I like Reymond's book very much. It is the first systematic I know of that has taken the Sproul-Gerstner / Catholic / Arminian apologetic and put it in its place. It is clearly Vantillian, though he does take Van Til to task over the Clark controversy in the OPC. It deals wonderfully with more contemporary issues such as Dispensationalism and even Open Theism. It references the WCF throughout as well. All in all, I recommend it highly but not as a replacement for any others that have been mentioned but as a supplement. <br><br>Ron

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John_C Offline OP
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Robin,

Thanks for your reply

When you say,
In reply to:
[color:"blue"] Most "partial" preterists (and I prefer to use the term orthodox preterists because the other term was coined to make us OPs appear to believe only part of what the Bible teaches) believe that there is yet a future fulfilment of the very same prophecies.



I may be wrong, but many non-Preteriests can make the same statement about future fulfillments. So, is everyone a preteriest (OP or PP) but we do not know it. Are the OP (PP) inferring something else with that statement, or is that not the major issue driving the OP (PP) position? If not, then what is the driving issue.

(Maybe on these echatology issues, I know more what I don't believe than do)



John Chaney

"having been firmly rooted and now being built up in Him and established in your faith . . ." Colossians 2:7
#8692 Thu Dec 11, 2003 6:45 AM
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Your hypothetical statement is not worth the response -thus my dizzy smilie. Even my wife read it and wondered what you were talking about [Linked Image]

I am not going to fall out with anyone over eschatology , unless its dispy pre-mil of course, so say all you want .

It would do you no harm if you were to look into Islam to see just what Christianity is up against even though your "so what" attitude makes me think that you dont care about it . Dont ignore Satan - he has but a short time left so get aquainted with his device of Islam so at least you can witness against it .

Do you witness to Moslems and Papists ? I do . "So what" , could well be your response . You are not a hyper-calvinist btw are you ? Do you just sit back and say "so what, God will do it " ?

We are in a war zone as christians , not on a picnic ! Wake up to it Ron .

#8693 Thu Dec 11, 2003 8:02 AM
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Howard,<br><br>Take care.<br><br>Ron

#8694 Thu Dec 11, 2003 8:25 AM
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You too Ron [Linked Image]

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