Eschatology Matters … A Diatribe Against Rabid Amillennialism & Amillennialists

The R2K flavor of Christianity with its amillennial eschatology, along with the amillennialism of the Protestant Reformed Church variety both by way to theological implication dismiss the postmillennial and Biblical position that Christ is the explicit King of the whole cosmos. R2K avoids this position by talking about how “Christ rules the common realm by His left hand.” By this maneuver the R2K heretics escape from any responsibility of identifying the explicit rule of Christ over different jurisdictions in the common realm with a clerical wave of the hand saying something ignorant like, “we need to stay in our lane,” as if the Lord Christ needs to be circumscribed in how and where He can exercise His authority. The Protestant Reformed Church, on the other hand, is just allergic to any talk of a Gospel Christianity where Christ is victor in space and time before His second advent.

It is difficult to see how those who reject the explicit Kingship of Christ over the whole cosmos and every area of life can affirm the time worn title of Jesus Christ as “Prophet, Priest, and King.”  Of course, the tack the rabid amillennialists take is to give a Gnostic turn Christ’s Kingship. The Kingship of Christ, per the R2K types and the foaming at the mouth amillennialists is “spiritual, don’t you know.” And “spiritual” ends up meaning “not concrete.” The Kingship of Jesus ends up being constrained to the Church realm as the Church is identified 100% as a synonym with Kingdom, so that Christ’s Kingdom is comprised of the Church alone, as if the rest of the Cosmos ticks along apart from the explicit rule of Jesus Christ as communicates in His Law-Word. The exegesis and theology that is required to come up with this neutering of the explicit Kingship of Jesus Christ is, shall we say, original.

Taking this matter in broad theological strokes we would observe that as Adam fell in such a manner as to completely transgress and violate the standards of God’s Kingdom, the Lord Christ, by His obedient life, death, resurrection, ascension, and session so repairs the wound that Adam inflicted that the results is that just as paradise was lost in Adam, so paradise is restored in principle in our great King Christ. In Adam all of creational reality received a mortal blow in space and time and in Christ all of creational reality receives a complete vivification in principle in space and time. To deny this would force us to conclude that the damage wreaked by old slew-foot is greater than could be repaired by the eternal victorious God man, Jesus Christ. In the words of Isaac Watts in his “Joy to the World,” Christ;

Comes to make His blessings flow
Far as the curse is found,
Far as the curse is found,
Far as, far as, the curse is found. 

As a matter of theology, Cornelius Van Til (inconsistently an amillennial himself) said;

‘The first three chapters of Genesis are the passage from grace to wrath; the rest of the Bible and the rest of history is the passage from wrath to grace that eventually leads to the wedding supper of the Lamb, the final judgment, and the extension into the eternal kingdom beyond history.”

So, the challenge for the rabid R2K amillennialist who insists that Christ rules by His left hand everything except the realm of grace and so didn’t die to restore and renew the family, the civil government, politics, art, education and whatever else David Van Drunen and David Engelsma has read as outside of Christ’s  kingly hegemony is to give us a non-contradictory exegesis and theology (upper register and lower register Mosaic covenant anybody?) that proves once and for all that Jesus Christ as ascended to the right hand of the Father to the end of ruling the cosmos for the benefit of the Church;

Ephesians 1:20 That power is the same as the mighty strength 20 he exerted when he raised Christ from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms, 21 far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every name that is invoked, not only in the present age but also in the one to come. 22 And God placed all things under his feet and appointed him to be head over everything for the church, 23 which is his body, the fullness of him who fills everything in every way.

Maybe it’s just me but “appointed Him to be head over everything for the Church” seems pretty clear, unambiguous, and conclusive.

What the Biblical Christian looks for, following Scripture, which teaches that Christ must reign until all things are put under His feet,” is a cosmic and exhaustive redemption that redeems all as far as the curse is found. To deny that suggests that Adam’s rebellion was more totalistic than Christ’s restoration. Apart from that looming triumphant reality, happening eventually in space and time before the second advent, amillennialists seem to be teaching and believing that Satan’s wound is greater than God’s ability to heal the wound of the fall.

Now, I can hear in my mind, the accusations from the amen corner of the party of the Reformed Church who delights in defeat and glories in the anticipation of Christians being martyred so that all the more glory can be gained that I am guilty of “a theology of glory,” as if confidence in Christ’s victory is a sin I should be shamed on for believing, or failing that D. G. Hart is sarcastically chirping somewhere in Hillsdale on how I am “immanentizing the eschaton,” as if the R2K gang who can’t shoot straight aren’t they themselves creating their own future here on earth by teaching that the future for Christians is nothing but “gloom, despair, and agony on me.” By cracky, according to the pessimistic gang anyone “expecting the victory and triumph of the church militant have sure and certain proven that they are possessed by demons.”

Here is the skinny of optimistic postmillennialism. We are not in a power contest between God and Satan. God, in Christ, has won the victory and the victory is now, though we understand the nowness of this victory has a not yetness about it. However, the “not-yetness” of the Kingdom, while being frontloaded in the Old Covenant has now given way to the “nowness” of the Kingdom being frontloaded with the coming of Christ and His bringing in of the Kingdom of God. This was the message of all the healings done by the Lord Christ, as well as the demon castings. All of this shouted, “The King and the Kingdom has arrived,” and that Kingdom brought in by the King is just as real today as it was in the 1st century Palestine during His ministry. Again, we get it, that there is more yet to come of this current nowness of the Kingdom but it is simply the case that the more that which is to come does not in any way diminish the now that is currently present among us. With the triumph of Christ in His obedient life, crucifixion, resurrection, ascension, and session, the ongoing, increasing and progressive sanctification of the cosmos has never ceased.

Oh, to be sure, the sanctification of the cosmos ebbs and flows in the course of history. There are dark times where it looks like the wound given at the fall will consume all of mankind. The tide of optimism recedes because man’s ugliness is more pronounced. However, in God’s economy the high tide of healing (salvation) is still ahead of us and eventually the tide will come in so high, before the return of our great Captain and Liege-Lord, that the knowledge of the Lord will cover the earth as the water covers the seas.

The R2K lads and the foaming at the mouth amillennialists point at all the wrongs in the world. Our only response is to sing to them;

This is my Father’s world:
Oh, let me ne’er forget
That though the wrong seems oft so strong,
God is the ruler yet.
This is my Father’s world,
The battle is not done:
Jesus who died shall be satisfied,
And earth and Heav’n be one.

Satan will be put down just as decidedly in space and time before Christ’s return as he was put down at the cross, resurrection, ascension, and session. If we do not believe this then by way of implication we seem to be saying that Mephistopheles is more powerful in the context of world history, than the Church of Jesus Christ of which He is the Head. There’s an expression for this view of history: It’s called “defeatism” – it’s the doctrine that Jesus the Christ is a loser in history; it’s the doctrine that the bride of Christ is a loser of history,” and it is the doctrine embraced by premillennialists and amillennialists.

Let it never be named among the called and battle ready troops of Jesus Christ.

Author: jetbrane

I am a Pastor of a small Church in Mid-Michigan who delights in my family, my congregation and my calling. I am postmillennial in my eschatology. Paedo-Calvinist Covenantal in my Christianity Reformed in my Soteriology Presuppositional in my apologetics Familialist in my family theology Agrarian in my regional community social order belief Christianity creates culture and so Christendom in my national social order belief Mythic-Poetic / Grammatical Historical in my Hermeneutic Pre-modern, Medieval, & Feudal before Enlightenment, modernity, & postmodern Reconstructionist / Theonomic in my Worldview One part paleo-conservative / one part micro Libertarian in my politics Systematic and Biblical theology need one another but Systematics has pride of place Some of my favorite authors, Augustine, Turretin, Calvin, Tolkien, Chesterton, Nock, Tozer, Dabney, Bavinck, Wodehouse, Rushdoony, Bahnsen, Schaeffer, C. Van Til, H. Van Til, G. H. Clark, C. Dawson, H. Berman, R. Nash, C. G. Singer, R. Kipling, G. North, J. Edwards, S. Foote, F. Hayek, O. Guiness, J. Witte, M. Rothbard, Clyde Wilson, Mencken, Lasch, Postman, Gatto, T. Boston, Thomas Brooks, Terry Brooks, C. Hodge, J. Calhoun, Llyod-Jones, T. Sowell, A. McClaren, M. Muggeridge, C. F. H. Henry, F. Swarz, M. Henry, G. Marten, P. Schaff, T. S. Elliott, K. Van Hoozer, K. Gentry, etc. My passion is to write in such a way that the Lord Christ might be pleased. It is my hope that people will be challenged to reconsider what are considered the givens of the current culture. Your biggest help to me dear reader will be to often remind me that God is Sovereign and that all that is, is because it pleases him.

6 thoughts on “Eschatology Matters … A Diatribe Against Rabid Amillennialism & Amillennialists”

  1. Not only in the present age but also……..whoa there. Not only in this present age? This present age? Huh!!

  2. Most of the men in my church (including my pastor) are post-mil. However, they’re respectful of my differences regarding the here and now triumphalism of the church. Your charges against the a-millenial view are simply not true. Rather, my eschatology has a certain commonality with Rutherford’s view of Justification:

    “Justification is not such an abolition of sin, in its root and essence, as shall be in the state of glory when root and branch shall be abolished. p. 197. I had rather say with Scripture, that all the justified saints must take down their top-sail, and go to heaven halting, and that they carry their bolts and fetters of indwelling sin through the field of free grace, even to the gates of glory.” p. 196.

    Samuel Rutherford, ‘The Trial and Triumph of Faith’

    There is no condemnation now to those in Christ, and His final victory over all things is established and sure, but the Christian life is primarily one of here and now learning obedience through the fellowship of His sufferings.

    You may want to reserve your ‘here and now’ victory sermon for the IDF when they have you bound and blindfolded next to a pit waiting your turn. We A-mils believe in a victorious Christ, but He will not share His glory with another when He returns.

    1. If you are of the optimistic Amil camp such as I find in Vos and Van Til, I can live w/ your felicitous inconsistencies that work in my favor. I don’t understand them but I can live with them. However, if you are of the RABID Amil camp we have issues and are just not going to agree.

      By the way, there is plenty of room for the fellowship of sufferings w/ Christ for the postmil view. Want me to list my scars?

      It’s just that we believe that on the road to victory there will, sure enough be suffering for the soldiers of Christ, while the Rabid Amils believe that there is no road to victory and that suffering is virtuous in and of itself as quite disconnected to advancing the Kingdom of Christ while we live this life.

      And no Postmil I know of has any problem with the wonderful Rutherford quote.

      1. I don’t know any RABID Amils, but perhaps your circle of acquaintances is larger than my own. The only eschatologists I’ve encountered in need of distemper shots are those post-mils who call us cowards and defeatists, and, even worse, those premil dispy Talmudic Zionists working to further the agenda of Christ-haters, in a delusion that thereby they’ll bring on Armageddon and the Rapture.

      2. Rabid Amil examples

        R. Scott Clark
        D. Gnostic Hart
        T. David Gordon
        Mike Horton
        David Van Drunen
        J. V. Fesko
        David Engelsma

        If you have any doubt of how raid they can be I suggest you purchase a copy of Ken Gentry’s “He Shall Have Dominion: A Postmillennial Eschatology. In this volume he interacts with some of the rabid amil types.

        These kind of amils are indeed cowards and defeatists. I don’t find that to be the case with the Optimistic Amil camp — a camp wherein I have many friends.

        If you aren’t aware of the rabid amil types by are aware of what you call rabid postmills I suggest that you get out more often.

        Also, in your last comment you said this,

        “You may want to reserve your ‘here and now’ victory sermon for the IDF when they have you bound and blindfolded next to a pit waiting your turn. ”

        If this would someday happen it would not affect my postmillennialism one whit. You see, we postmills interpret Scripture not by our experience but by God’s revelation.

        Though, that thing you describe is more likely to happen as long as Christians take a amill retreatist approach.

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