Premillennialism

When Did the Belief in Jesus’ Millennial Reign Begin?

When Did the Belief in Jesus’ Millennial Reign Begin?

I talked with a gentleman a few weeks ago who told me that belief in Jesus’ millennial reign was relatively new in church history. He asserted that it did not begin until late in the late nineteenth century. Was he correct?

Absolutely not! Premillennialism, the belief in Jesus’ thousand year rule upon the earth before the eternal state, dominated the first three hundred years of the church.

In essence, there has been a rewriting of church history that ignores the existence of early church beliefs regarding Jesus’ future reign.

The EFCA Turns Away from Premillennialism

The EFCA Turns Away from Premillennialism

On the afternoon of June 19, 2019, the Evangelical Free Church of America (EFCA) voted to remove the word “premillennial” from their statement of faith. As one who has attended EFCA churches in the past, I feel a deep sense of sadness at the decision. I believe this removal of the word “premillennial” takes the EFCA in an unacceptable direction.

I believe that the members voting in favor of removing “premillennial” from their statement of beliefs made their decision the basis of three false assumptions.

The Biblical Necessity of Jesus’ Reign

The Biblical Necessity of Jesus’ Reign

In my last post, I looked at what Scripture teaches about our glorious role in Jesus’ kingdom during the millennium, which takes place between the Second Coming of Christ and the eternal state (referred to as “eternity” in the above timeline). For those of us in Christ, this thousand year period of time will be a thrilling time of renewal as we reign with Jesus for a thousand years sharing in His inheritance.

After reading my previous article, some might ask, “Is the millennium really necessary for us to experience the wondrous restoration you wrote about? Won’t these things also be true in the eternal state?”

The Triumph of the Redeemed!

The Triumph of the Redeemed!

At some level, all believers share in the sufferings of Jesus. We may not face torture and martyrdom for our faith as many of our brothers and sisters in Christ experience throughout the world. But nonetheless, we know the pain of rejection and ridicule as a result of our love for Jesus and His Word.

Just as we share in Jesus’ suffering we will also someday share in His triumph. Now we endure the ridicule and persecution of those who reject the Savior; in the future we will reign with Jesus.

Dancing with the Scoffers

Dancing with the Scoffers

Scripture tells us the last days will marked by those who mock our hope in Jesus’ imminent return. The apostle Peter reveals that in the last days scoffers will appear ridiculing such hope with this question, “Where is the promise of his coming? For ever since the fathers fell asleep, all things are continuing as they were from the beginning of creation” (2 Pet. 3:3-4).

How can we recognize these modern day scoffers? Below I list five ways they make themselves known:

3 Reasons Why Satan Hates the Future Reign of Jesus

3 Reasons Why Satan Hates the Future Reign of Jesus

The opposition to Jesus’ future reign on earth remains intense. Although premillennialism grew dramatically during the twentieth century, many Bible-believing teachers and pastors have reverted to Augustine’s platonic view of reality that denies biblical teaching regarding the millennium.

What has caused this reversal in recent decades? I believe the roots of today’s passionate opposition to premillennialism lie in Satan’s continuing hatred of anything to do with Jesus’ future reign.

What Difference Does It Make?

What Difference Does It Make?

During the past year, I have written many articles defending my belief in premillennialism, which is the belief that Jesus will return to earth after a literal seven year tribulation, destroy the armies arrayed against Jerusalem, and rule the world for a thousand years seated on the throne of David.

At this point you may be asking, “What difference does it make?” After all, many pastors who deny these things preach the Gospel and expound the Word with great conviction. Does it really matter if they deny Israel’s place in future biblical prophecy or regard the book of Revelation as having little relevance for us today apart from the final two chapters? Yes, it absolutely matters.

The Joy of Writing About Prophecy

The Joy of Writing About Prophecy

Back in the last century, most Bible-believing churches affirmed premillennialism. Not only that, many of these churches held week-long prophetic conferences teaching believers about the rapture, the tribulation, Jesus' second coming, the millennium, and the eternal state.

Sadly, this has changed. Many pastors no longer believe Israel has a place in God's prophetic program. The Lord's promise that we will reign with Him in the millennium is either relegated to another era or completely dismissed.

3 Reasons Why Israel is Vital to our Future Hope

3 Reasons Why Israel is Vital to our Future Hope

Those who have followed my blog know I often write about Israel’s continued place in God’s prophetic program.

Why do I do this? Why not just write about the signs and our immanent hope in Jesus’ return as I often do? Why defend Israel’s place in God’s prophetic program?

It’s precisely because our expectation of Jesus’ soon return is so important that I defend Israel’s future role in prophecy.

The Beliefs of the Disciples Regarding the Future of Israel

The Beliefs of the Disciples Regarding the Future of Israel

So many today believe that God rejected Israel as a nation after the Jewish people rejected Jesus. Others believe God never intended for there to be a difference between Israel and the church and thus believe that God’s covenants with the Patriarchs no longer matter in prophecy.

In this video, I show why the disciples’ question in Acts 1:6 as well as the Lord’s response points to a still future restoration of a kingdom to Israel.

7 Reasons to Regard the Rapture as a Unique Event, Part 1

7 Reasons to Regard the Rapture as a Unique Event, Part 1

We live in a time when believers are “tossed to and fro by the waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by human cunning, by craftiness in deceitful schemes” (Eph. 4:14). This is especially true in regard to the return of Jesus. Today, we face a myriad of differing “schemes” regarding the rapture and other end time events.

How do we find our way in the midst of such confusion?

7 Reasons to Regard the Rapture as a Unique Event, Part 2

7 Reasons to Regard the Rapture as a Unique Event, Part 2

In my last post, I began listing reasons why we should regard the rapture as a separate event from the Second Coming. Much confusion exists today over this mater.

Because so many today fail to make the distinction between the two events, or fail to even believe in a rapture, it’s important to understand why it is different than the Second Coming.

5 Harmful Impacts of Amillennialism

5 Harmful Impacts of Amillennialism

Before the time of Augustine in the fifth century, premillennialism dominated the early church. Most of the early church fathers voiced a strong belief in a future one thousand year reign of Jesus.

Although on the surface it might seem to be an insignificant change, amillennialism profoundly changed the church in the centuries after Augustine. It altered the church’s view of Scripture, as well as of prophecy, and the negative impact of Augustine’s doctrine of future things continues to this day.

7 Ways Amillennialism Negates God’s Promises to Israel

7 Ways Amillennialism Negates God’s Promises to Israel

Although Israel miraculously emerged as a nation seventy years ago fulfilling many biblical prophecies, many today still reject the idea that God will keep His promises to restore a kingdom to His people. Those who hold to this this position, often referred to as amillennialists, see no future for Israel in God’s prophetic program.

It has long been my contention that in their quest to negate God’s promises to Israel, amillennialists glorify the church rather than Jesus. They make God’s future kingdom all about what the church does by making life better in our current world. Can you see how over time this might open the door to socialism as a way to accomplish this?

5 Ways Amillennialism Distorts the Biblical Worldview

5 Ways Amillennialism Distorts the Biblical Worldview

This is my third article on how an amillennial view of Scripture can, over time, open the day to Socialism. I’m writing in response to an article depicting how socialism is gaining a foothold in many churches across the United States.

Please note I am not saying all amillennialists are Socialists, certainly not. My point is that churches with a long history of amillennialism and its accompanying worldview seem to be much more susceptible to a Marxist way of thinking.

I believe this is because they distort the biblical worldview in a number of ways:

5 Ways Amillennialism Discredits the Bible

5 Ways Amillennialism Discredits the Bible

One aspect of amillennialism that deeply troubles me is the denial of a future kingdom for Israel. Those who advocate this position believe the Old Testament promises made to Abraham, Jacob, David, and Israel are fulfilled by Jesus Christ and His church in this current age, a spiritual millennium.

They support this assertion through an allegorical interpretation of large sections of prophetic Scripture in both the Old and New Testament.

I believe this disregard for the literalness of prophecy weakens the integrity of the rest of God’s Word. Though often not right away, eventually many non-prophetic passages fall victim to those wishing to overlay a symbolic interpretation upon them that conforms to what they believe.

The Blossoming of Israel

The Blossoming of Israel

The above picture of the orange grove reflects life in modern day Israel. As you can see, the trees can hardly contain the abundant harvest of oranges.

This is a far different scene from what Mark Twain saw when he visited the land in 1867. In his book The Innocents Abroad, he described it as “A desolate country whose soil is rich enough, but is given over wholly to weeds... a silent mournful expanse.... a desolation.... we never saw a human being on the whole route.... hardly a tree or shrub anywhere. Even the olive tree and the cactus, those fast friends of a worthless soil, had almost deserted the country.”

Why Premillennialism Matters

Why Premillennialism Matters

I recently read an article by Bert Farias on the Charisma News website entitled The Corruption of American Christianity: The Evil Agenda to Destroy America. In it, the writer shows how Marxist and Communist ideologies have gained a foothold in many churches and denominations throughout the United States.

Through a mixture of truth and error, the promoters of this leftist agenda not only sabotage the Gospel, but also the scriptural purpose of the church.

But why do some Christians fall for such errors while others immediately see their subversive intent? Why do so many elevate a purely social agenda above the Gospel?