PMW 2019-044 by Zachary Garris
Gentry note: I thought this was an interesting article providing much food for thought.
Have you ever thought about why the Old Testament (OT) books are ordered the way they are in our English Bibles? If you have given this much thought, you have probably noticed that the English OT is ordered is by genre (history, poetry, prophecy). While understandable, this order has some serious shortcomings. More helpful is the order of the books that the ancient Israelites used, including Jesus.
Jesus Used the Hebrew Order
As mentioned in a previous article, Jesus used the three-fold division of the Old Testament used by the Jews in His day—the Law, the Prophets, and the Writings. Continue reading
PMW 2018-049 by Stephen Altrogge (The Blazing Center)
Gentry note: One of the evangelical tragedies of our times is the dismissal of the Old Testament, as if it were God’s word emeritus. Too many in the contemporary church are preaching a truncated gospel based on a truncated Bible. Andy Stanley, son of famous Baptist pastor Charles Stanley, became a tragic case-in-point when he recently declared himself unhitched from the Old Testament. Stephen Altrogge demonstrates the faulty logic of such a declaration in his amusing expose of Stanley’s error.
Following the advice of pastor Andy Stanley, I just unhitched Jesus from the Old Testament. Boy does it ever feel good to be rid of that old thing. It totally cluttered up the first 2/3 of my Bible. And really, it was so irrelevant to modern Christians, am I right?
Plus, have you ever tried to find the book of Habakkuk? It’s like trying to find a needle in a stack of needles, which I can tell you from experience is extraordinarily painful. Continue reading
PMT 2015-147 by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.
An important postmillennial text is Psalm 2. Psalm 2:8 states:
Ask of Me, and I will surely give the nations as Your inheritance, / And the very ends of the earth as Your possession.
An Amillennial Objection
Amillennialists often object to postmillennialism’s use of this verse. They complain that postmillennialists apply the terms ‘nations’ and ‘earth’ in a way that Jesus and the apostles never intended: as political entities. The amillennialist argues that the NT teaches that Christ’s making the nations and the earth his footstool simply refers to the salvation of scattered Gentiles from every tribe tongue and nation, not Christ’s influence on political structures, etc. Continue reading
PMT 2015-140 by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.
We can adequately understand God’s sovereign plan for the world only when we approach it in light of its historical inception. In the Bible’s account of universal origins we discover the very purpose of history. God creates man in his own image (Ge 1:26) as a materio-spiritual being (Ge 2:7). Man’s God-ordained purpose is to bring honor and glory to God by exercising godly dominion in the earth (Ge 1:26–30). Protology leads to eschatology for eschatology is rooted in creation.
Because God possesses almighty power (Job 40:1–42:6); Isa 40:12 –28), and governs by inscrutable wisdom (Isa 55:8–9; Ro 11:32–35), the Christian actually should be predisposed to the historical victory postmil-lennialism expects. The postmillennial system best balances the material and spiritual aspects of Scripture and gives full significance to both the temporal and eternal features of God’s plan and man’s obligation to him. The Lord creates man and history for his glory; therefore, man and history will bring glory to him. “You are worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honor and power; for You created all things, and by Your will they exist and were created” (Rev 4:11). “For of Him and through Him and to Him are all things, to whom be glory forever. Amen” (Ro 11:36). Continue reading
PMT 2015-139 by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.
In my last article I began a two-part study on Zechariah 14. Having presented the dispensational view, I will now present a postmillennial interpretation of this famous passage.
The Siege of Jerusalem
The siege of Jerusalem described in Zechariah 14:1–2 points to the AD 70 judgment upon Jerusalem. J. Dwight Pentecost admits that the disciples who hear the Olivet Discourse would naturally apply Zechariah 14 to that event. But then, he says, such requires the confusing of God’s program for the church with that for Israel. So, he and other dispen-sationalists interpret the passage literalistically, with all the topographical and redemptive historical absurdities this creates. As they do this they totally omit any reference to the destruction of the very city and temple being rebuilt in Zechariah’s day. Yet this literal temple (the second temple) is destroyed in AD 70, as all agree. Continue reading
PMT 2015-121 by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.
I appreciate the questions readers send to me. I regret that I am not able to answer them quickly, due to my schedule. However, here is one that is a favorite among dispensationalists. And it is an intriguing one.
You argue that John must be measuring an actual, historical temple in Rev 11:1-2. Yet Ezekiel measures a temple, even though it does not exist in history. This suggests that the temple does not need to exist for John to measure it. How do you explain this problem for your view?
Thanks for your perceptive question. Please consider the following response. Continue reading
PMT 2015-072 by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.
Though John saw his visions, we do not. Consequently, he has to relate them to us through verbal communication. And John is so absorbed with the Old Testament Scriptures that he presents his visions in Old Testament language. John intentionally takes up the prophetic mantle, even mimicking the Old Testament grammar, as well as alluding to their writings.
H. Charles observes that “our author makes most use of the prophetical books.” Colin Hemer agrees: “the influence of the prophets on John’s mind is especially strong.” More precisely, H. B. Swete argues that John’s favorite OT books are in the following order: Daniel, Isaiah, Ezekiel, and the Psalms. I would qualify this by noting regarding the Psalms that John is especially interested in the prophetic and Messianic psalms. Charles Hill adds Zechariah to the list. G. K. Beale and D. A . Carson disagree with Swete’s ranking, pointing out that “Ezekiel exerts greater influence in Revelation than does Daniel.” Continue reading