On Earth as it is in Heaven (documentary)

JM

Puritan Board Doctor
A pretty good intro to Postmillennialism.


"Is the Kingdom of God a present reality or something future? What will the world be like before the second coming? Will the church fulfill the task commissioned by Christ? Will the nations be discipled? These are some of the questions we explore in this documentary."

Yours in the Lord,

jm
 

BayouHuguenot

Puritanboard Amanuensis
"Is the Kingdom of God a present reality or something future?
Every millennial position, including today's Dispensationalists, say "already-not yet." We can turn the tables, though, if the kingdom of God is primarily present, then it's hard to account for the future resurrection.
What will the world be like before the second coming?

Both premils and postmils make a cogent argument that Isaiah 65 describes a pre-eternal state. What postmils really can't explain how is the ontology of the world "changes" in such a way that allows for extremely long life (beyond that of modern medicine), mountains flowing with wine, etc. Premils can explain it: the millennial reign. There might be other problems in premillennial thought, but they don't have the tension postmil does on this point.
 

RWD

Puritan Board Sophomore
Every millennial position, including today's Dispensationalists, say "already-not yet." We can turn the tables, though, if the kingdom of God is primarily present, then it's hard to account for the future resurrection.


Both premils and postmils make a cogent argument that Isaiah 65 describes a pre-eternal state. What postmils really can't explain how is the ontology of the world "changes" in such a way that allows for extremely long life (beyond that of modern medicine), mountains flowing with wine, etc. Premils can explain it: the millennial reign. There might be other problems in premillennial thought, but they don't have the tension postmil does on this point.

Whatever the ontology of the world can be in your estimation, if it’s achievable through Christ’s earthly reign (Pre), then why can’t it be achievable during his heavenly reign (optimistic A or Post)?
 

BayouHuguenot

Puritanboard Amanuensis
Whatever the ontology of the world can be in your estimation, if it’s achievable through Christ’s earthly reign (Pre), then why can’t it be achievable during his heavenly reign (optimistic A or Post)?

My supposition, and that's all it can be for either side, is that Christ's physical presence on earth, per the premil gloss, transforms the ontology of the world in such a way to allow that. We know, for example, that when Jesus' feet tough the Mt of Olivers when he returns, it will split the mountain in two and create a valley. I'm not entirely sure how that translates to a changed ontology, but I am just observing the data at this point.

Of course, that entails other difficulties for premil.

I know Gary North has written on Isaiah 65 in Millennialism and Social Theory, but he never really explains why or how that works. My guess would be that they would say medical advances or transhumanism, but I don't know.
 

RWD

Puritan Board Sophomore
Ironically I’m to teach on millennial views tomorrow. I’m not going to spend much time on premillennialism, other than perhaps quote Calvin. “This fiction is too childish to need or to deserve refutation.” :)
 

BayouHuguenot

Puritanboard Amanuensis
Ironically I’m to teach on millennial views tomorrow. I’m not going to spend much time on premillennialism, other than perhaps quote Calvin. “This fiction is too childish to need or to deserve refutation.” :)

To each his own, but that type of thinking could build cognitive dissonance in the minds of those who have come across scholarly presentations of premillennialism (e.g., Henebury, Kurschner, Blaising, Bock).
 

Charles Johnson

Puritan Board Freshman
Every millennial position, including today's Dispensationalists, say "already-not yet." We can turn the tables, though, if the kingdom of God is primarily present, then it's hard to account for the future resurrection.


Both premils and postmils make a cogent argument that Isaiah 65 describes a pre-eternal state. What postmils really can't explain how is the ontology of the world "changes" in such a way that allows for extremely long life (beyond that of modern medicine), mountains flowing with wine, etc. Premils can explain it: the millennial reign. There might be other problems in premillennial thought, but they don't have the tension postmil does on this point.
What postmill believes the earth flowing with wine is literal, and not figurative of a time of increasing prosperity? When Israel was a land "flowing with milk and honey", that indicated an agricultural prosperity relative to the lands they had until then dwelt in, not that the streams literally flowed with anything other than water. Postmillennialism as I know it isn't fundamentally about an "ontological change". This objection is quite strange to me.
 

BayouHuguenot

Puritanboard Amanuensis
What postmill believes the earth flowing with wine is literal, and not figurative of a time of increasing prosperity? When Israel was a land "flowing with milk and honey", that indicated an agricultural prosperity relative to the lands they had until then dwelt in, not that the streams literally flowed with anything other than water. Postmillennialism as I know it isn't fundamentally about an "ontological change". This objection is quite strange to me.

I was following Gary North's exposition and his "two types of postmillennialism." You are correct in that older Puritan postmil doesn't hold those views. The North/Chilton preterist types do lean that direction.
 

RWD

Puritan Board Sophomore
I was following Gary North's exposition and his "two types of postmillennialism." You are correct in that older Puritan postmil doesn't hold those views. The North/Chilton preterist types do lean that direction.

I share Charles’ train of thought.

Can you provide quotes from North and Chilton whereby they take OT figurative language and apply it literally to the golden age they have in mind?

When you say they “lean that way,” what is to lean toward the literal flowing of wine, milk and honey?
 

BayouHuguenot

Puritanboard Amanuensis
I share Charles’ train of thought.

Can you provide quotes from North and Chilton whereby they take OT figurative language and apply it literally to the golden age they have in mind?

When you say they “lean that way,” what is to lean toward the literal flowing of wine, milk and honey?

It's in North's Millennialism and Social Theory, towards the end of the book. He specifically targets what he calls "Banner of Truth" postmillennialism for allegorizing those passages. If I can format the pdf from the book, I'll try to provide quotes. I no longer have the hard copy.
 

BayouHuguenot

Puritanboard Amanuensis
North deals with the key passage in Isaiah in chapter 5 of Millennialism and Social Theory. I generally agree with his exegesis.

" The language of Isaiah is straightforward: an era is coming, in history, when the person who dies at age one hundred will be considered as a child, an indication of a major extension of men's lifespans. Also, sinners will be accounted accursed. This appears to be an application of Isaiah's prophecy of the millennial era's improved moral self-consciousness, when vile people will not be called liberal,! and churls will not be called bountiful (Isa. 32:5). (North 96).

North: Even if we take these words symbolically (Le., as rhetoric), they still have to apply to history, for sinners will not be present in the post-resurrection world. They will not participate in the post-resurrection New Heaven and New Earth. Isaiah made it perfectly clear: he was talking about history. These words cannot possibly apply to the post-resurrection world. There will be a coming era of blessing in history. God's positive historical sanctions on covenant-keepers will bring victory to His earthly kingdom. It is quite understandable why Archibald Hughes, an amillennial theologian, mentioned this passage in only two brief sentences in his book, A New Heaven and a New Earth. 2 This passage refutes his eschatology. (So much the worse for Isaiah, apparently!) Herman Ridderbos is wiser still: he never even mentioned the verse in a book on the kingdom of God that is over 500 pages long.3 (He compensates for this omission by citing hundreds of German liberal theologians, most of whom outlived their theories. (97)

North: I think this could well become biblical etiquette in an era of millennial blessings, for three reasons. First, the sting of death will be progressively reduced. People will not fear death so greatly as they do now. The transition from physical life to physical death will not be so familiar a threat during an era in which people live very long lives. Second, the cry of distress (v. 19) refers to personal spiritual pain (II Sam. 22:7; Psa. 18:6). This degree of pain need not be prevalent in an era of millennial blessings. Third, the covenantal passage from death to life in history will be made by a majority of those dwelling in "Jerusalem," meaning God's Church. The close relatives of those deceased who have made the transition into eternity will not be so devastated as they are today (98).
 

Ed Walsh

Puritan Board Junior
This morning I was very encouraged by the promises of the Bible. Hundreds of them about the world progressively growing in the knowledge of Christ until it is like the waters that cover the earth.

I'll keep this short, but to those who have ears to hear, I say...
Only a fool or an idiot would deny that there has been growth in the Kingdom of God from when Jesus left the Earth until the present day. Given the myriads of promises and prophecies of the Scripture, would it not, prima facie, be equally foolish to say that, "That's all well and good but it's all downhill from here?"

Matthew 28:18‭-‬20 KJV
And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.
 

jwithnell

Moderator
Staff member
North deals with the key passage in Isaiah in chapter 5 of Millennialism and Social Theory. I generally agree with his exegesis.

" The language of Isaiah is straightforward: an era is coming, in history, when the person who dies at age one hundred will be considered as a child, an indication of a major extension of men's lifespans. Also, sinners will be accounted accursed. This appears to be an application of Isaiah's prophecy of the millennial era's improved moral self-consciousness, when vile people will not be called liberal,! and churls will not be called bountiful (Isa. 32:5). (North 96).

North: Even if we take these words symbolically (Le., as rhetoric), they still have to apply to history, for sinners will not be present in the post-resurrection world. They will not participate in the post-resurrection New Heaven and New Earth. Isaiah made it perfectly clear: he was talking about history. These words cannot possibly apply to the post-resurrection world. There will be a coming era of blessing in history. God's positive historical sanctions on covenant-keepers will bring victory to His earthly kingdom. It is quite understandable why Archibald Hughes, an amillennial theologian, mentioned this passage in only two brief sentences in his book, A New Heaven and a New Earth. 2 This passage refutes his eschatology. (So much the worse for Isaiah, apparently!) Herman Ridderbos is wiser still: he never even mentioned the verse in a book on the kingdom of God that is over 500 pages long.3 (He compensates for this omission by citing hundreds of German liberal theologians, most of whom outlived their theories. (97)

North: I think this could well become biblical etiquette in an era of millennial blessings, for three reasons. First, the sting of death will be progressively reduced. People will not fear death so greatly as they do now. The transition from physical life to physical death will not be so familiar a threat during an era in which people live very long lives. Second, the cry of distress (v. 19) refers to personal spiritual pain (II Sam. 22:7; Psa. 18:6). This degree of pain need not be prevalent in an era of millennial blessings. Third, the covenantal passage from death to life in history will be made by a majority of those dwelling in "Jerusalem," meaning God's Church. The close relatives of those deceased who have made the transition into eternity will not be so devastated as they are today (98).
It seems odd to deal with Isaiah without have an eye toward the proximate (exile and return) fulfillment and the ultimate fulfillment of the prophesy in the coming of Christ. Trying to fix anything upon any millennial age, however one defines it, seems a stretch. Ridderbos doesn't mention the verse because it's not applicable to the topic.
 

BayouHuguenot

Puritanboard Amanuensis
It seems odd to deal with Isaiah without have an eye toward the proximate (exile and return) fulfillment and the ultimate fulfillment of the prophesy in the coming of Christ. Trying to fix anything upon any millennial age, however one defines it, seems a stretch. Ridderbos doesn't mention the verse because it's not applicable to the topic.

I can see an argument for reducing Isaiah 65 to proximate fulfillment in the return from exile (even though those conditions were never met,, even allegorically). But it simply isn't true that it doesn't apply to the kingdom. It's hard to see how it would not.

I don't see how any eschatological system "needs" this verse to make it work. My own eschatological beliefs are basically that the Deep State will throw us in FEMA camps. That and partial preterism is wrong.
 
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