BOOKS: BIBLICAL STUDIES (1500BC-AD70) / EARLY CHRISTIAN PRETERISM (AD50-1000) / FREE ONLINE BOOKS (AD1000-2008)
David S. Clark -The Message From Patmos: A Postmillennial Commentary on the Book of Revelation (1921) "This early twentieth-century Postmillennial commentary on the Book of Revelation, written by the father of theologian Gordon Clark, offers an easy-to-read alternative to the popular Pre-millennial/Dispensational views of the best-selling Scofield Reference Bible and a multitude of other dissertations on end-time prophecy that litter the shelves of Christian bookstores. "
Correspondence on "Full" Preterism
By Andrew Sandlin
I've often read Chalcedon articles during the past 10 years or so. The Lord brought me out of the Arminian, pre-trib, Dallas Seminary tradition into 5-point Calvinism and a still developing view of the covenants and eschatology. I'm grateful for how the Lord has used your magazine and website to help me on this ongoing journey.
Regarding your article, Those Long-Lived "Last Days," I'm finding Full Preterism to be a much more satisfying view Biblically than your conclusions, though I think that a positive and triumphant view of Christ's kingdom is right on target and fits in well with Preterism. I know Preterism does not fit the creeds of the early fathers but they were not infallible, the Scriptures are. It is hard to see how one can deny that the inspired New Testament writers clearly taught the imminent return of Christ. And if they taught an imminent return, one cannot honestly conclude that "soon" meant 2,000 years and more. It seems that all views, except Preterism, do not deal with the eschatological language of the writers of the New Testament in a straightforward, simple and honest way (especially passages like Matt. 23-25). There seems to be a real tendency to take figurative, apocalyptic language found in these NT passages and make them literal, when so many of the phrases and figures are similar if not exactly the same as ones found in the OT. I'm not completely convinced of Full Preterism but I'm studying...
I do thank you at Chalcedon for always making me think. I know all of us who love the Lord will be lifelong learners. Keep up the good work.
Dear Mr. ----:
Thank you for your kind comments about Chalcedon. We do appreciate them.
I don't hold to orthodox eschatology merely because the Christian creeds say so, but chiefly because I believe the creeds summarize what the Bible teaches. As I pointed out in my editorial, I do not believe that the NT writers "clearly taught the imminent return of Christ." I believe they expected that He could come at any time, and that Jesus Himself indicated that He would not return (the second time) for a good, long time. I gave a rationale for why I believe the NT writers had this expectation -- their knowledge of salvation history. They saw Christ's death, resurrection and return in an historical continuum.
In fact, I believe that if you lop off Christ's return -- which I take mainly to mean the very visible, physical return so graphically described in 2 Thes. 1 (for example) -- you have severed an artery of salvation history and leave vulnerable His space-time death and resurrection. In other words, Christ's future physical Advent and His past physical death and resurrection stand and fall together. It seems to me that the return of Christ mentioned in the NT is usually referring to just this epochal, history-ending coming (1 Cor. 15:22-23).
I think the key is in salvation history, not in the exegesis of texts like Mt. 24-25 as such. "Prophecy" is secondary to history in the minds of the NT writers. On this point, could I recommend Oscar Cullmann's classic Salvation History? It offers an entirely different paradigm than the full preterists offer and makes good sense of the message of the NT.
While I disagree with some of their exegesis, I have no big problem with the sort of orthodox (partial) preterism of Adams, DeMar, Gentry and others. They all affirm the future, physical Second Advent.
While I don't see the views of the church as ultimately normative, I think it most unlikely that the almost unanimous testimony of the church for 2000 years could have been mistaken on such a fundamental point. Full preterism is in fact, therefore, non-Christian in that it repudiates cardinal tenets of the orthodox Faith. More egregiously, it misunderstands salvation history.
I don't want to get into a fight about this, and this is not an invitation for a debate; but I do thank you for writing and pray that God will lead you as you stay true to Him and His Word and the Faith once for all delivered to the saints.
Yours and His,
P. Andrew Sandlin
What do YOU think ?
Date: 10 Aug 2006
What do YOU think ?
Date: 10 Aug 2006
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