PMW 2021-064 by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.
I am continuing a study on the millennial reign of Christ. In this article I will focus on:
Christ and the Postmillennial Hope
In Christ’s earthly ministry we witness the coming of the prophesied kingdom. For instance, in Mark 1:15 we hear the Lord himself proclaim: “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel.” Thus, not only does he declare that “the” time is fulfilled (the prophetically-expected time) and that the “kingdom of God is at hand,” but he also associates it with the proclamation of the gospel. Later in Matthew 12:28 we read him state: “if I cast out demons by the Spirit of God, then the kingdom of God has come upon you.” Continue reading
PMW 2021-062 by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.
In my last article I began considering the distinctive approach to the millennium in the postmillennial view, and as over against amillennialism. Though amillennialism and postmillennialism are closely related, they are distinct.
So now: What is the postmillennial outlook? Why is it called post-millennial? And what are its expectations?
Postmillennialism teaches that Christ will return to earth after a long era of gospel progress and worldwide righteousness. As the gospel wins greater influence the world will witness a long era of social stability, economic development, and international peace.
PMW-2021-061 Kenneth L. Gentry,
Postmillennialism and amillennialism are closely related. In fact, they are both “post” millennial in that they believe the current age (the Church Age, if you will) is the “millennium,” and that Christ will return “post” (after) the millennium.
Both Post- and Amillennialists note that the “thousand year” reign of Christ occurs in only one passage in Scripture, Revelation 20:1–6. We further observe that it appears in the most symbolic book in all of Scripture. In Revelation we see a seven-headed beast, fire-breathing horses, locusts with the faces of men and the teeth of lions, a woman standing on the moon, and many more symbolic features. Consequently, we prefer that eschatological discussion begin elsewhere in more didactic portions of Scripture, and that it be controlled by passages other than the apocalyptically-charged, highly-wrought symbolic images in Revelation Continue reading
PMW 2018–04 by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.
Dr. T. David Gordon wrote a critique of theonomy several years ago where he intended to dispel the whole notion of theonomic ethics: T. David Gordon. “Critique of Theonomy: A Taxonomy,” in Westminster Theological Journal, 56 (1994): 23-43 (hereinafter abbreviated: CT). I had many problems with his critique. But one angle is particularly frustrating because it frequently arises. He believe that postmillennialism is one of the foundations of theonomy. Though I am a postmillennialist and a theonomist, as was Bahnsen. The two are not mutually dependent, as amillennial theonomists will attest. Continue reading
PMT 2016-070 by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.
From time-to-time a review is helpful for understanding a system of thought. And basic definitions are therefore in order. This is especially true in presenting postmillennialism because it is widely misunderstood and subject to radical misconceptions. This is a particular problem for attempting to explain postmillennialism to someone who has been a dispensationalist for a long time. Continue reading
PMT 2016-056 by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.
Sadly, as the heat of the eschatological debate intensifies, too often the light from it diminishes. Postmillennialism is perhaps the easiest eschatological position to misunderstand in our era and therefore inadvertently to misrepresent. Consequently, we must remind our brothers in the debate of postmillennialism’s actual claims. In the Westminster Theological Journal article I caution non-postmillennialists regarding three faulty assumptions that they must avoid when responding to our eschatological system. And though few competent theologians would intentionally apply these conditions to postmillennialism, I fear that these sometimes lurk unrecognized in the subconscious. Continue reading
PMT 2015-067 by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.
As I note on my “Definition” page on this blogsite, postmillennialism confidently anticipates a time in earth history (continuous with the present) in which the very gospel already operating will win the victory throughout the earth, fulfilling the Great Commission. “The thing that distinguishes the biblical postmillennialist, then, from amillennialists and premillennialists is his belief that the Scripture teaches the success of the great commission in this age of the church” (Greg L. Bahnsen, Victory in Jesus, 74).
Thus, we hold that the overwhelming majority of men and nations will be Christianized, righteousness will abound, wars will cease, and prosperity and safety will flourish. “It will be marked by the universal reception of the true religion, and unlimited subjection to the sceptre of Christ.” “It shall be a time of universal peace.” “It will be characterised by great temporal prosperity” (David Brown, Christ’s Second Coming, 399, 401). This causes us to “look forward to a great ‘golden age’ of spiritual prosperity continuing for centuries, or even for millenniums, during which time Christianity shall be triumphant over all the earth” (Lorraine Boettner, The Millennium, 29). Continue reading