PMT 2013-018 by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.
Few doctrines of the Bible receive more attention among evangelicals today than the second coming of Christ. His return is a foundational doctrine of the historic Christian faith, as we see in its embodiment in the great ecumenical creeds of the church, such as the Apostles’ Creed and the Nicene Creed. Consequently, a study of this doctrine well deserves our time, as this doctrine rounds out a full theological system. A complete theological system requires both protology (a study of origins) and eschatology ( the conclusion of the world)
Unfortunately though, the second advent is more deeply loved and firmly believed than biblically understood and accurately proclaimed. Fundamentalists dominate the air waves and flood the Christian book market with sadly deficient studies of this glorious locus of systematic theology. And more often than not the have a “zeal without knowledge” when approaching this great biblical theme.
This is especially tragic in that properly comprehending it is vitally important for framing in a Christian worldview. After all, it exalts the consummate glory of his redemptive victory, completes God’s sovereign plan for history, and balances a full-orbed theology of Scripture. (See my earlier posting: “Why Study Eschatology” PMT 2013-003.)
In the church today we have five basic eschatological positions. In order to better understand eschatology it well serves the serious student of Scripture to read the best presentations from each school. The evangelical market is absolutely flooded with trite, disoriented, unsystematized studies of the doctrine. Indeed, if you took the most popular books on eschatology and lined them up end-to-end, it would be a good thing. They need to be gotten off our bookshelves. Where are the Nazis when you need them? Burning these books would be the only way to get light from them. Continue reading