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Church-State Relations and the Book of Revelation
An Introduction to The Parousia: A Careful Look at the New Testament Doctrine of the Lord's Second Coming
by James Stuart Russell (1878) // Written by
Todd Dennis, Curator







The Parousia of Christ A Past Event
The Kingdom of Christ A Present Fact
With A Consistent Eschatology

William S. Urmy, D.D.



"Hence in the original this resurrection is denoted by a phraseology differing from that which is applied to the resurrection of mankind in general. "


 "We grant that a resurrection was to occur at the parousia, but deny that it was to be visible to the eyes of mortals, and therefore insist that it must have taken place just as the Scriptures assert it did; and that, being thus an invisible transaction, it may be still proceeding, as a legitimate part of the events which mark the reign of the Lord Jesus Christ as the One who sits on the throne of authority and power to judge and give life—eternal life—with spiritual bodies to all who are believing in him as the years roll on."


"So when we read in Heb. ii, 14, 15, "that through death he might bring to nought [destroy, in Authorized Version] him that had the power of death, that is, the devil; and might deliver all them who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage," we are not to consider this to be an annihilation of the devil, but merely a reference to the cessation of his power over those in whom he had produced this fear of death." (pp 146.147)


"Our death is the immediate exchange of the visible physical for the invisible physical like unto the ascension. Death is our assumption into the invisible physics; the assumption is the service which death gives us; it is instant on death, the spring of another existence without a wintry ghostly interval. In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, we repossess our body in death; death is our ingression into the spiritual body without a leap or break. 'To-day shalt thou be with me in paradise.' We know that when our earthly house of this temporal residence is dissolved we have—not shall have —a building of God, a residence of eternal elements in the heavens."  (p. 284)

"So our hope in Christ is resplendent with the glories in store for us as we look for our own immediate manifestation with him in the heavenly places so soon as we cease to bear the image of the earthy and begin at once to bear the image of the heavenly. " (p. 284)

"There is a text in Second Timothy which may demand some attention here: "But shun profane babblings: for they will proceed further in ungodliness, and their word will eat as doth a gangrene: of whom is Hymenaeus and Philetus; men who concerning the truth have erred [have missed the mark], saying that the resurrection is past already, and overthrow the faith of some" (2 Tim. ii, 16-18). "The precise meaning of this expression is by no means clearly ascertained; the most general, and perhaps best founded, opinion is that they understood the resurrection in a figurative sense of the great change produced by the Gospel dispensation. . . . Now, as the doctrine of the resurrection of the body was found to involve immense difficulties even in those early days (Acts xvii, 32; I Cor. xv, 35), while, on the other hand, there was so great a predisposition in the then current philosophy (not even extinct now) to magnify the excellence of the soul above that of its earthly tabernacle, it was at once the easier and more attractive course to insist upon and argue from the force of those passages of Holy Scripture which enlarge upon the glories of the spiritual life that now is, under Christ, and to pass over or explain away allegorically all that refers to a future state in connection with the resurrection of the body" (McClintock and Strong, art. "Hymenaeus").

This explanation being accepted, it is at once perceived that the error of these men was not that there had been a resurrection of the body; and therefore those who now maintain such a doctrine are not properly classed with these heretics.

"Even if they had maintained that a resurrection of the body had taken place, it is to be remembered that this was before the parousia of Christ, and therefore such teaching might then have been erroneous, while now it may be, and, as we believe, is, the only correct teaching, and such as should not subject one to the spear of the heretic hunter.

The faith which was overthrown was doubtless a faith in an actual resurrection of a body into the eternal life of the future. This the upholders of our theory do not interfere with, but sustain with all their powers; only it is maintained also that, this resurrection being necessarily invisible to the bodily eye, it has already occurred, according to the plain and incontestable teachings of Holy Writ." (pp 261-262)

"We therefore conclude that those who here appear before the throne of the Son of man are the nations of Palestine, the individuals of which received or rejected him in the person of his brethren, and that the rejecters stood there to be judged and doomed, according to Matt. xxii, 6, 7, while the receivers of his disciples entered into the kingdom. " (p. 94)


William Revell Moody (1900)
In Christ Came Again Dr. Urmy labors with zeal and diligence to establish the old theory, discredited by every evangelical creed, every catholic creed, and every generally acknowledged exegete of Christendom, that Christ came before the close of the apostolic age in a sense which completely fulfilled all predictions concerning His parousia and apokalupsis. His utter variance, not only from the pre-millennial bat also from the post-millennial view of the second advent, is fully confessed by himself. He says: "The system of eschatology which this work presents requires that certain changes be made not only in the current thought of the day concerning the second coming of Christ, but in creeds, articles of faith, rituals, and hymns, where they refer to this and kindred eschatological subjects." We wish Dr. Urmy joy of this task!" (Record of Christian work, Volume 19, p. 381)

Bibliotheca Sacra
Christ Came Again: The Parousia of Christ a Past Event; The Kingdom of Christ a Present Fact, with a Consistent Eschatology. By William S. Urmy, D.D. I2mo. Pp. 394. New York: Eaton & Mains; Cincinnati: Curts & Jennings. 1900. $1.25.  An elaborate defense of the theory that the second coming of Christ occurred in connection with the destruction of Jerusalem. The book is likely to increase the number of those holding this view." (Volume 57, p. 775)

Methodist Magazine
"This book discusses the second coining of our Lord, not as a future event, but as one which did occur about thirty seven years after our Lord's ascension, namely, at the fall of Jerusalem. This theory is supported by arguments on the expectation of the apostles, upon the teachings of our Lord, and from the Apocalypse of St. John. It presents, the author affirms, an eschatology consistent itself with the Scripture and furnishes satisfactory adjustment of the great doctrines of the Resurrection, the Judgment, the Millennium, and a complete refutation of the errors of the Adventists and Millennialists. The argument is very ingenious, but, to our mind, not conclusive." Volume 51, p. 483)

Francis Rufus Bellamy
"Dr. Urmy's purpose is to substitute for the prevailing notions of the second advent, borrowed from Judaism as they are, a conception in better accord with the New Testament reasonably interpreted, and with the spiritual nature of Jesus' teachings. With his main positions, the same as have been set forth by Mr. J. Stuart Russell, Dr. I. P. Warren, and Dr. Whiton in well-known books, we heartily concur, viz., that the promised return of Christ was to be in spiritual power rather than in bodily form, and that the era of its commencement may be assigned to the time when his throne as the spiritual Lawgiver displaced Moses's seat in the fall of Jerusalem, A.d. 70. Also, that we must substitute for the notions of a general resurrection and judgment the truth that resurrection and judgment are for each at death. On the other hand, we strongly dissent from his uncritical treatment of various details. We cannot grant that Moses was translated, or that the Apocalypse is a divine revelation of remote historical events, or that St. Paul's phrase, " caught up in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air," is to be understood as meaning simply that the dying Christian goes, as we say, " to heaven." (The Outlook, Volume 64, p. 740)



What do YOU think ?

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Date: 11 May 2007
Time: 01:41:27


I think you put a lot of time into this and are to be commended for it. (Whatever we do for the Lord is not in vain, 1 Cor 15:58, Rom 14:5-8). I also think Mr. Urmy's view has some very attractive features to it: Millennial reign of the Saints manifestiing itself in the physical realm beginning with Constantine's triumph over beastly Roman persecution - just as Eusebius glowingly describes the epoch moment. My own view began much akin to his but then had to adjust to the Biblical time constraints set forth by the fact that the Christ's Return triggers the First Resurrection, (the raising up of the Dead in Christ, Rev 20:4-6 & 1 Thess 4:15-17). And that inaugural period was foreseen & reported by John to terminate 1000 years later, Rev 20:4-6. so basically, I just pick up J.S. Russell's approach and boldly add the end date to his Millennium 1000 years after its 70AD start: ergo, the 70-1070AD Millennium. Slightly different dates, perhaps, but otherwise very similar to Mr. Urmy's    May God bless you Mr. Dennis and all your readers with the Spirit of wisdom & revelation in the knowledge of Jesus Christ, (Ephesians 1:15-23).

John Riffe

Date: 13 Jul 2012
Time: 14:31:46

Your Comments:

I think that the view that Christ came & there was a secret resurrection is balderdash. This POV can be thrown back at those who bad-mouth Pre-tribulationism as (allegedly) teaching a SECRET rapture, though the secrecy or openness of the Rapture, is not an important point for pre-triulationists.





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