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Amillennialism Articles

Scriptures: This Age vs The Age to Come

Two-Age Eschaton chart

Strong’s Concordance
165. aión ►

aión: a space of time, an age
Original Word: αἰών, ῶνος, ὁ
Usage: an age, a cycle (of time), especially of the present age as contrasted with the future age, and of one of a series of ages stretching to infinity.

Scripture referring to “this age” only

Matthew 13:22

He also that received seed among the thorns is he that hears the word; and the care of this world (aión), and the deceitfulness of riches, choke the word, and he becometh unfruitful.

GRK: μέριμνα τοῦ αἰῶνος καὶ ἡ
NAS: and the worry of the world and the deceitfulness
KJV: of this world, and
INT: care the age and the

Matthew 24:3

And as he sat upon the mount of Olives, the disciples came unto him privately, saying, Tell us, when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world (aión)?

GRK: συντελείας τοῦ αἰῶνος
NAS: and of the end of the age?
KJV: and of the end of the world?
INT: the completion of the age

Matthew 28:20

Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world (aión). Amen.

GRK: συντελείας τοῦ αἰῶνος
NAS: even to the end of the age.
KJV: the end of the world. Amen.
INT: completion of the age

Mark 4:19

And the cares of this world (aión), and the deceitfulness of riches, and the lusts of other things entering in, choke the word, and it becometh unfruitful.

GRK: μέριμναι τοῦ αἰῶνος καὶ ἡ
NAS: but the worries of the world, and the deceitfulness
KJV: of this world, and
INT: cares the of this life and the

Romans 12:2

And be not conformed to this world (aión): but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.

I Corinthians 1:20

Where is the wise? where is the scribe? where is the disputer of this world? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of this world?

I Corinthians 2:6-8

Howbeit we speak wisdom among them that are perfect: yet not the wisdom of this world, nor of the princes of this world, that come to nought: But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, even the hidden wisdom, which God ordained before the world unto our glory: Which none of the princes of this world knew: for had they known it, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory.

II Corinthians 4:4

In whom the god of this world has blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them.

Galatians 1:4

Who gave himself for our sins, that he might deliver us from this present evil world, according to the will of God and our Father:

Ephesians 2:2

Wherein in time past you walked according to the course of this world (age), according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now works in the children of disobedience:

I Timothy 6:17

Charge them that are rich in this world, that they not be high-minded, nor trust in uncertain riches, but in the living God, who gives us richly all things to enjoy;

Titus 2:12

Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world;

In the preceding verses, “this age” is temporal, describing our current age prior to Christ’s return. All these things seem to pass away upon His return.

Scripture referring to the “age to come” only

I Corinthians 6:9-10

Know you not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God.

I Corinthians 15:50

Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; neither does corruption inherit incorruption.

Galatians 5:21

Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.

Ephesians 5:5

For this you know, that no whoremonger, nor unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, hath any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God.

I Thessalonians 2:12

That you would walk worthy of God, who has called you unto his kingdom and glory.

II Thessalonians 1:5

Which is a manifest token of the righteous judgment of God, that you may be counted worthy of the kingdom of God, for which you also suffer:

I Timothy 6:19

Laying up in store for themselves a good foundation against the time to come, that they may lay hold on eternal life.

II Timothy 4:18

And the Lord shall deliver me from every evil work, and will preserve me unto his heavenly kingdom: to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.

In contrast to “this age” the qualities assigned to the age to come are all eternal in nature. These references are clearly describing the future eschatological state of believers (and nonbelievers if you factor in the references to judgment).

Scripture illustrating the transition between both “this age” and “the age to come” (two ages)

Matthew 12:32

And whosoever speaks a word against the Son of Man, it shall be forgiven him: but whosoever speaks against the Holy Ghost, it shall not be forgiven him, neither in this world (aión), neither in the world (aión) to come.

GRK: τούτῳ τῷ αἰῶνι οὔτε ἐν
NAS: in this age or
KJV: in this world, neither in
INT: this the age nor in

Matthew 13:39-40, 49

The enemy that sowed them is the devil; the harvest is the end of the world (aión); and the reapers are the angels. As therefore the tares are gathered and burned in the fire; so shall it be in the end of this world (aión).

v39 N-GMS
GRK: θερισμὸς συντέλεια αἰῶνός ἐστιν οἱ
NAS: is the end of the age; and the reapers
KJV: the end of the world; and
INT: [the] harvest [the] completion of the age is

v40 N-GMS
GRK: συντελείᾳ τοῦ αἰῶνος
NAS: so shall it be at the end of the age.
KJV: the end of this world.
INT: completion of the age

Matthew 13:49 – So shall it be at the end of the world (aión): the angels shall come forth, and sever the wicked from among the just,

GRK: συντελείᾳ τοῦ αἰῶνος ἐξελεύσονται οἱ
NAS: it will be at the end of the age; the angels
KJV: the end of the world: the angels
INT: completion of the age will go out the

Luke 18:30

Who shall not receive manifold more in this present time, and in the world (aión) to come life everlasting.

GRK: ἐν τῷ αἰῶνι τῷ ἐρχομένῳ
NAS: time and in the age to come,
KJV: and in the world to come life
INT: in the age that is coming

Luke 20:34-35

And Jesus answering said unto them, The children of this world (aión) marry, and are given in marriage: But they which shall be accounted worthy to obtain that world (aión), and the resurrection from the dead, neither marry, nor are given in marriage:

v34 N-GMS
GRK: υἱοὶ τοῦ αἰῶνος τούτου γαμοῦσιν
NAS: of this age marry
KJV: The children of this world marry, and
INT: sons of the age this marry

v35 N-GMS
GRK: καταξιωθέντες τοῦ αἰῶνος ἐκείνου τυχεῖν
NAS: to attain to that age and the resurrection
KJV: that world, and
INT: having been accounted worthy to the age that to obtain

Mark 10:30

But he shall receive an hundredfold now in this time, houses, and brethren, and sisters, and mothers, and children, and lands, with persecutions; and in the world to come eternal life.

GRK: ἐν τῷ αἰῶνι τῷ ἐρχομένῳ
NAS: along with persecutions; and in the age to come,
KJV: and in the world to come eternal
INT: in the age which is coming

Ephesians 1:21

Far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this world, but also in that which is to come:


References

Strong’s Concordance 165. BibleHub.com. Retrieved from https://biblehub.com/greek/165.htm

The Two Age Model (chart). The Riddleblog. Retrieved from http://kimriddlebarger.squarespace.com/the-two-age-model-chart/

Categories
Articles Eschatology

Day of the Lord

Have you ever been in trouble? I mean BIG trouble?

The kind of trouble that makes your mouth go dry, your heart race and plants a rock in the pit of your stomach?

The kind of trouble that will ABSOLUTELY alter your future should it come to pass?

Our lesson of woe and wonder today begins in the Book of Acts…

Jesus walked the earth for 40 days after His resurrection and rose to heaven through the clouds over Mt. Olivet. Holy Spirit descended upon the 120 in the upper room in Jerusalem with a sound like roaring wind and tongues of fire. Full of the Holy Spirit, the disciples emerge preaching the Good News in a cacophony of languages, reaching the Jewish masses visiting Jerusalem from many different nations for the feast of Pentecost. The crowd is amazed and caught in wonder, though some mock in disbelief, accusing the disciples of drunkenness.

“But Peter, stands up with the eleven, lifts his voice, and says to them, ’15 For these are not drunken, as ye suppose, seeing it is but the third hour of the day.* 16 But this is that which was spoken by the prophet Joel;’” (Acts 2:15)

* Each new 24 Jewish day began at sundown (or around 6pm.) That is why the Jewish Sabbath begins at sundown. Our Roman days begin at midnight. Jewish Daytime began at sun-up (around 6am); and ends at 6pm for counting hours. The first hour is therefore 7am; the second hour is 8am; the third hour is 9am, the sixth hour is noon or 12pm; and so forth. (Carolyn Hurst. Nov 8, 2019. What Hour is That? Retrieved from https://www.passiontoknowmore.com/post/2016-1-19-what-hour-is-that.)

Acts 2

17 And it shall come to pass in the last days, saith God, I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh: and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams:

18 And on my servants and on my handmaidens I will pour out in those days of my Spirit; and they shall prophesy:

19 And I will show wonders in heaven above, and signs in the earth beneath; blood, and fire, and vapour of smoke:
20 The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the great and notable day of the Lord come:

Joel 2

28 And it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh; and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions:

29 And also upon the servants and upon the handmaids in those days will I pour out my spirit.

30 And I will shew wonders in the heavens and in the earth, blood, and fire, and pillars of smoke.

31 The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the great and terrible day of the Lord come.

And this is where we will pitch camp today, friends.

The Day of the Lord

There is a common notion that the day of the Lord is the same as the day of Christ, when Jesus returns to earth at the end of days, but we are mistaken if we think there is only one day of the Lord.

The “day of the Lord” is Jewish apocryphal language; an idiom for expressing a cosmic “lights out” from God.

Usually we see this expressed in the form of an invading army. Judgment and wrath from above, God Himself is coming for you and there is nowhere to hide.

Clouds are key. Why? Because mortals do not walk among the clouds. God manifested Himself to Israel in the clouds in Exodus, in the wilderness, in the tabernacle and in the temple.

In Old Testament and New, clouds are considered to be the visible evidence of the invisible presence and power of God.

So, out of the mouths of two or three witnesses…

The prophet Zephaniah–when referring to the destruction of Jerusalem and Judah in 586BC–probably has one of the best definitions of the day of the Lord in chapter 1:14-15:

14 The great day of the Lord is near, it is near, and hastes greatly, even the voice of the day of the Lord: the mighty man shall cry there bitterly.

15 That day is a day of wrath, a day of trouble and distress, a day of wasteness and desolation, a day of darkness and gloominess, a day of clouds and thick darkness,

In Isaiah 13:9-11, we see judgment coming to Babylon at the hand of the Medes fulfilled in 539 BC:

9 Behold, the day of the Lord comes, cruel both with wrath and fierce anger, to lay the land desolate: and he shall destroy the sinners thereof out of it.

10 For the stars of heaven and the constellations thereof shall not give their light: the sun shall be darkened in his going forth, and the moon shall not cause her light to shine.

11 And I will punish the world for their evil, and the wicked for their iniquity; and I will cause the arrogancy of the proud to cease, and will lay low the haughtiness of the terrible.

We also hear similar language in Isaiah 5:30, God’s warning to Israel through the prophet Isaiah: “And in that day, they shall roar against them like the roaring of the sea: and if one look unto the land, behold darkness and sorrow, and the light is darkened in the heavens thereof.

More Old Testament Examples of the Day of the Lord

Isaiah 2:12, judgment over Israel: “For the day of the Lord of hosts shall be upon every one that is proud and lofty, and upon every one that is lifted up; and he shall be brought low:”

Amos 5:18-20, judgment over Israel: “Woe unto you that desire the day of the Lord! to what end is it for you? the day of the Lord is darkness, and not light.”

In Nahum 1:3, we have judgment coming to Nineveh at the hands of the Babylonians and Medes, as fulfilled in 612 BC: “The Lord is slow to anger, and great in power, and will not at all acquit the wicked: the Lord has his way in the whirlwind and in the storm, and the clouds are the dust of his feet. You will see a connection between the desolation described in Nahum and the desolation described in Joel.

In 2 Samuel 22:7-10, we see David singing about the day God delivered him out of the hand of Saul and his armies: 10 He bowed (parted) the heavens also, and came down; and darkness was under his feet.

Other translations say “thick darkness” was under God’s feet. The NIV says “dark clouds.” We also see this same language used in in David’s Psalm 18 about the same event.

Jeremiah 46:10 and Ezekiel 30. The prophets lament judgment coming to Egypt at the hand of the Babylonians. Per Ezekiel 32:7: 7 And when I shall put thee out, I will cover the heaven, and make the stars thereof dark; I will cover the sun with a cloud, and the moon shall not give her light. (Read Ezekiel 32 and see the depth of judgment language here!)

Finally, still more Old Testament examples of the day of the Lord can be found in: Zechariah 14, Obadiah and Isaiah 34 (judgment over Edom), Lamentations 2:22, and Malachi 4:5-6 (foreshadowing the fall of Israel by 70AD.)

Matthew 24, Mark 13, Luke 21

The Olivet Discourse is probably one of the most abused and misunderstood passages of Scripture. In Matthew 24, we have the words of Jesus as He stands on the Mount of Olives and prophesies judgment over Jerusalem and the nation of Israel, which we know climaxed with the destruction of the temple by the hand of Rome in 70 AD—40 years later, within a Biblical generation—just as our Lord said it would.

29 Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken:

New Testament examples of the day of the Lord include Acts 2, 2 Peter 3:10, Revelation 6:12-17.

Matthew 26: Jesus Coming in the Clouds

On the night Jesus was betrayed, Caiaphas, Jewish high priest, asked Jesus if He was the Messiah:

63 But Jesus held his peace, And the high priest answered and said unto him, “I adjure you by the living God, that you tell us whether you are the Christ, the Son of God.”

64 Jesus said to him, “As you’ve said. Nevertheless, I say to you, Hereafter shall you see the Son of man sitting on the right hand of power, and coming in the clouds of heaven.”

Caiaphas tears his robes in a great sign of offense and declares blasphemy and our Lord is lead off.

Here Jesus is reminding Caiaphas of Daniel 7:13: “I saw in the night visions, and behold, with the clouds of heaven there came one like a son of man, and he came to the Ancient of Days and was presented before him…”

In effect, Jesus is saying, “Not only am I the one Daniel saw, but I’m coming back to judge you.”

By the way, our hallelujah moment comes immediately after Daniel 7:13 where verse 14 states: “And there was given him dominion, and glory, and a kingdom, that all people, nations, and languages, should serve him: his dominion is an everlasting dominion, which shall not pass away, and his kingdom that which shall not be destroyed.” Amen!

A Proper Response to Divine Judgment

So, what would be a proper response to the impending doom of divine correction?

Now when they heard this, they were pricked (katenygesan, pierced, cut) in their heart, and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do? (Acts 2:37 KJV)

I don’t know about you, but in years prior, whenever I read this, I just imagined the crowd felt bad. Pricking your finger hurts a little. I think other translations probably do a better job of handling the reality of the moment.

The word is katenygesan, pronounced kata-nee-yee-san, which the New American Standard Bible translates as “pierced.” The NIV says “cut.” I don’t think they were having an “Aw, shucks, we missed it” moment that day!

To say this is a big “Oh NO” moment for the Jews would probably be an understatement. In an instant, they recognized the fulfillment of Messianic prophesies and understood there was yet a promise of judgment coming down upon the heads of the nation of Israel.

God promises two outcomes in the book of Joel: judgment of the wicked and foolish at the hands of a powerful invading army—and—salvation for the humble and wise.

So, when it comes to the day of the Lord—a day of darkness and trial—it’s a day we don’t want to meet.

What to Do?

So, when the future you’ve imagined for yourself seems to be disappearing into a puff of smoke and thick darkness—the big question we have to ask is, “What shall we do?”

Peter has our answer in Acts 2…

38 Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.

39 For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call.

40 And with many other words did he testify and exhort, saying, Save yourselves from this untoward (corrupt) generation.

A promise of escape wrapped in a warning of judgment. What does Peter say to do first? Let’s break it down…

Turn to Your Father

Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. (Acts 2:38)

Accept God’s promises. We have BOTH promises of blessing and promises of judgment.

Jesus taught that apart from Him, we are withered branches ready for the fire. (John 15) You are free to disagree with that, but you’re not arguing with me; you’re arguing with Jesus.

We see this again explained in Joel 2…

32 And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be delivered: for in mount Zion and in Jerusalem shall be deliverance, as the Lord hath said, and in the remnant whom the Lord shall call.

That is a promise from our Father for deliverance from incoming wrath, amen? So if we do all this, we arrive at…

God’s Response to Right-Heartedness

18 Then will the Lord be jealous for his land, and pity his people.

19 Yea, the Lord will answer and say unto his people, Behold, I will send you corn, and wine, and oil, and ye shall be satisfied therewith: and I will no more make you a reproach among the heathen:

20 But I will remove far off from you the northern army, and will drive him into a land barren and desolate, with his face toward the east sea, and his hinder part toward the utmost sea, and his stink shall come up, and his ill savour shall come up, because he hath done great things.

I believe this is referring to the Roman army in 70AD. Keep in mind, scholars believe the book of Joel to be written about 830BC—almost 900 years before the fall of Jerusalem!

If you’re familiar with Deuteronomy 28, you know the first third of the chapter outlines a list of blessings Israel will experience with living in right relationship with our Creator. But the rest of Deuteronomy 28 contains the myriad of curses that they bring upon themselves should they choose to walk in rebellion, including pestilence, famine, earthquakes, war, cannibalism, etc.

As we know from first-century historians like Josephus, many of these curses came to pass during the war of the Jews and the Roman siege on Jerusalem.

The Faithfulness of God

Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. (Acts 2:38)

Well, we know how history played out…

3,000 souls were added to the Judeo-Christian church that day and more were added daily. The people witnessed many signs and wonders through the Spirit-empowered apostles and many sold their possessions. (Acts 2:41-46)

By 64 AD, an exodus of Christian Jews began to move from Jerusalem:

“The people of the Church in Jerusalem were commanded by an oracle given by revelation before the war to those in the city who were worthy of it to depart and dwell in one of the cities of Perea which they called Pella. To it those who believed on Christ traveled from Jerusalem, so that when holy men had altogether deserted the royal capital of the Jews and the whole land of Judaea…” —Eusebius, Church History 3, 5, 3

“So Aquila, while he was in Jerusalem, also saw the disciples of the disciples of the apostles flourishing in the faith and working great signs, healings, and other miracles. For they were such as had come back from the city of Pella to Jerusalem and were living there and teaching. For when the city was about to be taken and destroyed by the Romans, it was revealed in advance to all the disciples by an angel of God that they should remove from the city, as it was going to be completely destroyed. They sojourned as emigrants in Pella, the city above mentioned in Transjordania. And this city is said to be of the Decapolis.” —Epiphanius, On Weights and Measures 15

So, just to be clear, if you see someone claiming the day of the Lord in Acts 2/Joel 2 is all about the rapture or Jesus’ return to set up His millennial kingdom, you can be sure they don’t clearly understand the ancient Jewish concept of divine judgment.

Categories
Articles Eschatology

Scripture: The Bottomless Pit

Revelation 20:1

And I saw an angel come down from heaven, having the key of the bottomless pit and a great chain in his hand.

Revelation 20:3

And cast him into the bottomless pit, and shut him up, and set a seal upon him, that he should deceive the nations no more, till the thousand years should be fulfilled: and after that he must be loosed a little season.

Revelation 17:8

The beast that thou saw was, and is not; and shall ascend out of the bottomless pit, and go into perdition: and they that dwell on the earth shall wonder, whose names were not written in the book of life from the foundation of the world, when they behold the beast that was, and is not, and yet is.

Revelation 9:1

And the fifth angel sounded, and I saw a star fall from heaven unto the earth: and to him was given the key of the bottomless pit.

Revelation 9:2

And he opened the bottomless pit; and there arose a smoke out of the pit, as the smoke of a great furnace; and the sun and the air were darkened by reason of the smoke of the pit.

Revelation 9:11

And they had a king over them, which is the angel of the bottomless pit, whose name in the Hebrew tongue is Abaddon, but in the Greek tongue hath his name Apollyon.

Revelation 11:7

And when they shall have finished their testimony, the beast that ascends out of the bottomless pit shall make war against them, and shall overcome them, and kill them.

Categories
Amillennialism Articles

Amillennialism Defined by Blue Letter Bible

[ also termed nunc-millennialism or inaugurated millennialism ]

Definition:

The amillennialist believes that the Kingdom of God was inaugurated at Christ’s resurrection (hence the term “inaugurated millennialism”) at which point he gained victory over both Satan and the Curse. Christ is even now reigning (hence the term “nunc-millennialism” — nunc means “now”) at the right hand of the Father over His church. After this present age has ended, Christ will return and immediately usher the church into their eternal state after judging the wicked. The term “amillennialism” is actually a misnomer for it implies that Revelation 20:1-6 is ignored; in fact, the amillennialist’s hermeneutic interprets it (and in fact, much of apocalyptic literature) non-literally.

Features and Distinctions:

Favored method of interpretation: redemptive-historical.

Israel and the church: The church is the eschatological fulfillment of Israel.

Kingdom of God: a spiritual reality that all Christians partake in and that is seen presently by faith, but will be grasped by sight at the consummation. [The eschatological fulfillment of God’s covenants with His earthly creation.]

The Rapture: The saints, living and dead, shall meet the Lord in the clouds and immediately proceed to judge the nations with Christ and then follow Him into their eternal state.

The Millennium: inaugurated with Christ’s resurrection. In an “already/not yet” sense, Christ already reigns over all and is already victorious over Satan.

Miscellaneous:

  • Higher degrees of interpreting prophecy in light of Christ’s advent, death, resurrection, and glorification.
  • Relies heavily on a two-age theology.

[Two-age theology: The branch of theological study focusing particularly upon the already / not yet eschatology presented in Scripture (e.g., the fact that we are already raised up with Christ and seated in the heavenlies (Eph. 2:6), but still await bodily resurrection (1 Cor. 15:50ff); or that we are already glorified (Rom. 8:30), but glorification is the last stage of our salvation and still awaiting consummation).]

Major proponents: Meredith Kline, Richard Gaffin, Robert B. Strimple, Gregory K. Beale, and John Murray.

Synopsis:

top Christian millennial views
Retrieved from https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Millennial_views.svg

Eschatology is the study of the eschaton; the eschaton is equated with “last things.” While other views focus on the final days of humankind on earth, amillennialism sees “the last things” as having been initiated at Christ’s resurrection and so, being applicable from the earliest days of the Christian church (cf. Acts 2:16-21; 1 Corinthians 10:11; Hebrews 1:1-2; and 1 Peter 1:20). The amillennialist perspective sees the whole of God’s redemptive revelation as twofold – promise and fulfillment; it also emphasizes that a strict-literal interpretation of Old Testament is not necessarily the most accurate way of determining what the text means.

The amillennial perspective emphasizes that the coming of the Kingdom of God is a two-part event. The first portion dawned at Christ’s first advent (John the Baptist proclaimed at this time, “The kingdom of heaven is at hand” — Matthew 3:2). At the cross, Christ won final victory over death and Satan. And then He ascended to reign upon the throne of David forever (Luke 1:32-33; Acts 2:30-31). Now because we “look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen; for the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal” (2 Corinthians 4:18) — because of this, the amillennialist sees the final things already accomplished, though not yet seen by sight, but by faith (2 Corinthians 5:7).

An important note is the amillennialist’s view of the church in this world: a role of suffering. The Christian will be hated by all, just as was Christ (Matthew 10:22), for a servant is not greater than his master. Seeing this as the church’s role on earth — to suffer as did Christ — the amillenialist can hold no hope for an earthly exaltation and longs for the fulfillment of the second stage of the coming of the Kingdom.

This second stage of the amillennial perspective is the final consummation of all the heavenly promises. The Christian will no longer see by faith alone, but by sight. All the shadowy things will pass away and our eternal reign with Christ will begin. The amillennialist, expecting no earthly glory for the church, places all his hope on this heavenly glory.

Bibliography:

Hoekema, Anthony. The Bible and the Future. Grand Rapids: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1994. (ISBN: 0802808514)
Hendrikson, William. More Than Conquerors: An Interpretation of the Book of Revelation. Grand Rapids: Baker Books-, 1939. (ISBN: 0801057922)
Beale, G.K. The Book of Revelation: A Commentary on the Greek Text. Grand Rapids: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1999. (ISBN: 0-8028-2174-X)
Strimple, Robert B. “Amillennialism.” Three Views of the Millennium and Beyond. Ed. Darrell L. Bock. Grand Rapids: Zondervan Publishing House,1999. (ISBN 0-310-20143-8)

Extra Credit:

Vos, Geerhardus. The Pauline Eschatology. Grand Rapids: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1953.
Vos, Geerhardus. Biblical Theology. Grand Rapids: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1953.
Ridderbos, Herman. The Coming of the Kingdom. Philadelphia: Presbyterian &Reformed Publishing Company, 1962. (ISBN: 0-87552-408-7)

Source:

Eschatology :: Four Views on the Millennium. Blue Letter Bible. Retrieved from https://www.blueletterbible.org/faq/mill.cfm.

Categories
Amillennialism Articles

One Resurrection or Two? Scriptures Supporting Amillennialism

Acts 24:15

15 And have hope toward God, which they themselves also allow, that there shall be a resurrection of the dead, both of the just and unjust.

(A premillennial lens will argue that “a resurrection” could still mean “a resurrection for the just and a separate resurrection for the unjust”, seemingly supported by passages like Revelation 20:4-5, 13. Indeed, the original Greek does not offer indefinite articles like “a” the way the English does. It is more accurate to say people will be raised “by resurrection”, which can be either plural or singular.)

John 5:28-29

28 Marvel not at this: for the hour is coming, in the which all that are in the graves shall hear his voice, 29 And shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation.

(Again, here premillennialism will argue this could be pointing to two separate resurrections separated by 1,000+ years. Only one hour is referenced however.)

John 6:39-40

39 And this is the Father’s will which hath sent me, that of all which he hath given me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up again at the last day.

40 And this is the will of him that sent me, that every one which sees the Son, and believes on him, may have everlasting life: and I will raise him up at the last day.

(One resurrection, at the last day. Here our Lord is referring to believers being raised up on the last day.)

John 6:44

No man can come to me, except the Father which has sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day.

John 6:54

Whosoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day.

John 11:24

24 Martha saith unto him, I know that he shall rise again in the resurrection at the last day.

(Seems to clearly indicate first-century Jews understood there would be a single resurrection “at the last day”.)

John 12:48

He that rejects me and receives not my words, has one that judges him: the word that I have spoken, the same shall judge him in the last day.

Matthew 13:36-43

36 Then Jesus sent the multitude away, and went into the house: and his disciples came unto him, saying, Declare unto us the parable of the tares of the field.

37 He answered and said unto them, He that sows the good seed is the Son of man; 38 The field is the world; the good seed are the children of the kingdom; but the tares are the children of the wicked one; 39 The enemy that sowed them is the devil; the harvest is the end of the world; and the reapers are the angels.

40 As therefore the tares are gathered and burned in the fire; so shall it be in the end of this world.

41 The Son of man shall send forth his angels, and they shall gather out of his kingdom all things that offend, and them which do iniquity; 42 And shall cast them into a furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth.

43 Then shall the righteous shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father. Who hath ears to hear, let him hear.

(Here it sure seems the wheat and the tares are divided during one harvest, not two separate harvests. A time separation of 1,000+ years has to be forced into the text.)

Matthew 13:47-50

47 Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto a net, that was cast into the sea, and gathered of every kind: 48 Which, when it was full, they drew to shore, and sat down, and gathered the good into vessels, but cast the bad away.

49 So shall it be at the end of the world: the angels shall come forth, and sever the wicked from among the just, 50 And shall cast them into the furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth.

(Again, it seems the good and bad fish are divided during one severing, not two separate events. A time separation of 1,000+ years has to be forced into the text.)

1 Thessalonians 4:13-18

13 But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope.

14 For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him.

15 For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep.

16 For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: 17 Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.

18 Wherefore comfort one another with these words.

Hebrews 9:27

And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment:

(That’s one judgment; not one partial judgment and then 1,007+ years later a more complete judgment.)


(2 Peter 2:9, 2 Peter 3:7, 10-13 are excluded from this list as they are most likely referring to the incoming day of the Lord judgment that fell upon Israel and Jerusalem between 66-70 AD. Revelation 20 will be dealt with separately, as it requires additional explanation.)

Categories
Amillennialism Articles

The Amillennial View of the Kingdom of God

The Word of God is rife with references to the kingdom of God (otherwise known as the “kingdom of heaven”), yet do Christians understand what they’re reading? Contrary to the notion that Christ will come back and set up an earthly kingdom for 1,000 years, the Bible seems to point out that the kingdom of God is an internal state of being.

The kingdom of God, in which the saints live and reign with Christ, refers to the local new Testament church on this earth. This kingdom was prophesied in Daniel and Jeremiah:

What prophecies point to the kingdom of God?

Daniel 2:44

And in the days of these kings shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom, which shall never be destroyed: and the kingdom shall not be left to other people, but it shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand for ever.

Jeremiah 31:31-34

“Behold, the days come, says the Lord, that I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel, and with the house of Judah:

“Not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day that I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt; which my covenant they brake, although I was an husband unto them, says the Lord:

“But this shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel; After those days, says the Lord, I will put my law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and will be their God, and they shall be my people.

“And they shall teach no more every man his neighbour, and every man his brother, saying, Know the Lord: for they shall all know me, from the least of them unto the greatest of them, says the Lord: for I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more.”

When was the kingdom of God inaugurated?

So the kingdom of heaven / kingdom of God, as prophesied in Daniel, was inaugurated in New Testament times at the beginning of the ministries of Jesus Christ and John the Baptist.

Luke 16:16

Jesus said, “The law and the prophets were until John: since that time the kingdom of God is preached, and every man presses into it.”

Luke 7:29-30

“And all the people that heard him, and the publicans, justified God, being baptized with the baptism of John. But the Pharisees and lawyers rejected the counsel of God against themselves, being not baptized of him.”

They had been baptized. We then read in

Matthew 21:31-32

“Whether of them twain did the will of his father? They say unto him, The first. Jesus saith unto them, Verily I say unto you, That the publicans and the harlots go into the kingdom of God before you.

“For John came unto you in the way of righteousness, and ye believed him not: but the publicans and the harlots believed him: and you, when you had seen it, repented not afterward, that ye might believe him.”

The kingdom of God is a present reality.

Matthew 4:17

“From that time Jesus began to preach, and to say, Repent: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.”

Matthew 12:28

“But if I cast out devils by the Spirit of God, then the kingdom of God is come unto you.”

Mark 1:14-15

“Now after that John was put in prison, Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God, and saying, ‘The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent you, and believe the gospel.'”

Luke 22:29-30

“Per Jesus, ‘And I appoint unto you a kingdom, as my Father has appointed unto me; That you may eat and drink at my table in my kingdom, and sit on thrones judging the twelve tribes of Israel.'”

Hebrews 1:2-3

“Has in these last days spoken unto us by his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds; Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high:”

What is the nature of the kingdom of God?

We understand the kingdom of God as an internal event; not a physical, earthly kingdom.

Daniel 4:1-3

“Nebuchadnezzar the king to all the peoples, nations, and men of every language that live in all the earth: ‘May your peace abound! It has seemed good to me to declare the signs and wonders which the Most High God has done for me. How great are His signs and how mighty are His wonders! His kingdom is an everlasting kingdom and His dominion is from generation to generation.'”

John 3:3-12

“Jesus answered and said to him, ‘Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.’

“Nicodemus said to him, ‘How can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter the second time into his mother’s womb, and be born?’

“Jesus answered, ‘Verily, verily, I say unto you, except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.'”

(Remember His words to Pilate; it is a kingdom not of this earth.)

John 18:36

“Jesus answered, ‘My kingdom is not of this world: if my kingdom were of this world, then would my servants fight, that I should not be delivered to the Jews: but now is my kingdom not from here.'”

Luke 17:20–21

“And when he was demanded of the Pharisees, when the kingdom of God should come, he answered them and said, The kingdom of God comes not with observation: Neither shall they say, Lo here! or, lo there! for, behold, the kingdom of God is within you.”

Romans 14:17

“For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost.”

Here Paul speaks of the kingdom of God being in terms of the regenerative heart in a Christian.

Hebrews 12:28

Per Paul, “Wherefore we receiving a kingdom which cannot be moved, let us have grace, whereby we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear:”

I Corinthians 15:50

“Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; neither does corruption inherit incorruption.”

How long will this millennial reign last?

Psalm 110:1

“The Lord said unto my Lord, ‘Sit thou at my right hand, until I make thine enemies thy footstool.'”

Psalm 8:6

“Thou made him to have dominion over the works of thy hands; thou hast put all things under his feet:”

I Corinthians 15:25

“For he must reign, till he hath put all enemies under his feet.”

Additional references to the kingdom of God

I Corinthians 6:9-10

“Know you not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God.”

Galatians 5:21

“Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.”

Ephesians 5:5

“For this you know, that no whoremonger, nor unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, hath any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God.”

I Thessalonians 2:12

“That you would walk worthy of God, who has called you unto his kingdom and glory.”

II Thessalonians 1:5

“Which is a manifest token of the righteous judgment of God, that you may be counted worthy of the kingdom of God, for which you also suffer:”

Recommended reading

Dunson, Ben. Jun 13, 2015. The Kingdom of God in the Old Testament: The Prophetic Hope. Ligonier Ministries. Retrieved from https://www.ligonier.org/blog/kingdom-god-old-testament-prophetic-hope/