Tag Archives: persecution

POSTMILLENNIALISM & THE GREAT TRIBULATION (4)

PMW 2020-050 by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.

This is our fourth installment on the great tribulation in postmillennial eschatology. We are currently surveying Matthew 24 and its prepartory signs to the great tribulation, showing that these signs occurred historically in the first century.

We come now to Matthew 24:7b where he declares that “in various places there will be famines.” Famines are easy to document in biblical world of the first century where they were particularly devastating. For instance, in Acts 11:28 we read of Agabus’ prophecy of a “great famine” that occurs during the reign of Claudius (AD 50s): “There stood up one of them named Agabus and signified by the Spirit that there should be great famine throughout all the world: which came to pass in the days of Claudius Caesar.” This is probably the famine Josephus mentions as striking Jerusalem: “A famine did oppress them at that time, and many people died for want of what was necessary to procure food withal” (Antiquities 20:2:5 §51).

Classical writers testify to the widespread, recurring famines in the AD 50s and into the 60s. We discover these in the works of Suetonius, Dio Cassius, Eusebius, and Orosius. For instance, speaking of Rome in AD 51 Tacitus writes: “This year witnessed many prodigies . . . . Further portents were seen in a shortage of corn, resulting in famine. . . . It was established that there was no more than fifteen days’ supply of food in the city.” (Annals 12:43) Continue reading

THE POWER OF FICTION FOR PRETERISM

PMT 2017-022 By Brian Godawa

If you are like me, a postmillennial redemptive-historical preterist, you have been deeply disturbed by the past huge success of Left Behind, as well as the current financial siphon of speculative novels on the book of Revelation. Is this concern because of greed or envy for the success of others? May it never be. My sadness is because I think it represents the spirit of the age: a hunger for conspiracy theories. In this world of obsession with narrative over facts, even Christians are more drawn to sensational fantasies of the end times than to the real-world glory of the Gospel in the Kingdom of God. Futurists (like Left Behinders) seem more interested in the coming of the “Antichrist” than in the coming of Christ, or rather, than in the current reign of Jesus Christ over all (Eph 2:20-22). Continue reading

POSTMILLENNIALISM AND PERSECUTION

StrengthPMT 2015-133 by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.

Quite frequenty critics of postmillennialism will go to NT passages such as Matt 10:22 to discredit postmillennialism’s long-term optimism. That passage reads:

“You will be hated by all because of My name, but it is the one who has endured to the end who will be saved.”

Since postmillennialism expects a future in which Christianity reigns supreme, and in which righteousness and peace will prevail throughout the world, texts such as this one must be explained. Postmillennialism cannot be true if Christians will always be hated and the only hope we have is our bare endurance. Continue reading

PERSECUTION AND REVIVAL IN INDIA

Christians IndiaPMT 2015-107
An insightful article on the vibrance of resurgent Christianity in Hindu India. Pray for our brothers there. Pray for our faith worldwide. Here is the first portion of the article

Christian Faith Is Growing 7 Years After Hindu Radicals Killed 100 Believers, Destroyed 6,000 Churches in India
By Stoyan Zaimov , Christian Post Reporter

Christians in India marked the seventh anniversary of the Orissa attacks on Monday, praying for close to 100 Christians who were massacred by Hindu extremists who were pressuring them to convert. An Archbishop has said the faith of Orissa’s Christians has grown stronger in the face of persecution. Continue reading

MATTHEW 10:22 AND POSTMILLENNIALISM

Hated by allPMT 2015-089 by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.

Oftentimes critics of postmillennialism will go to NT passages such as Matt 10:22 to discredit postmillennialism’s long-term optimism. That passage reads:

“You will be hated by all because of My name, but it is the one who has endured to the end who will be saved.”

Since postmillennialism expects a future in which Christianity reigns supreme, and in which righteousness and peace will prevail throughout the world, texts such as this one must be explained. Postmillennialism cannot be true if Christians will always be hated and the only hope we have is our bare endurance. Continue reading

PROBLEMS WITH REVELATION’S EARLY DATE (2)

Roman persecutionPMT 2015-049 by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.

Revelation’s early date is generally held by modern postmillennialists of the preterist variety. I have argued elsewhere positively for the early date. So here I am offering a short series that briefly responds to late-date evidences. I am focusing on Leon Morris’ arguments, due to their cogency, succinctness, and his stature as a Revelation commentator.

Morris discovers “indications that Revelation was written in a time of persecution.” This evidence is felt to accord “much better with Domitian.” [1] W. G. Kümmel is quite confident that “the picture of the time which the Apocalypse sketches coincides with no epoch of the primitive history so well as with the period of Domitian’s persecution.” [2] Morris, Kümmel, and a number of other scholars list this as among their leading arguments for the A.D. 95-96 date. Continue reading

2 TIM 3 (# 13): PERSECUTION OR PROGRESS?

Sunrise 3PMT-2015-017 by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.

Is it universally true that “all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will be persecuted” (2 Tim 3:12)? Are the pessimistic eschatologies correct in interpreting this verse as gnomic, a general truth for all times? If it is, then postmillennialism would be a doubtful proposition.

As I have been showing over this lengthy series, Paul is writing an occasional letter dealing with issues that Timothy is facing in Ephesus, while Paul is languishing in prison (2 Tim 1:16) and facing death (2 Tim 4:6–8). Therefore, as he prepares to leave this world, and to entrust the Ephesian ministry wholly to Timothy, Paul is warning Timothy what he is to expect and how he is to confront it.

It is in such a context that we must understand Paul’s brief statement in 3:12. Continue reading