Book Reviews -- By: Kenneth Alan Daughters
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The Earthly Reign of Our Lord with His People by Robert Duncan Culver, 3d ed., Rushford, MN: Vinegar Hill Press, 1998. 238 pages, paper. $6.50 (postpaid, available from the author at Rt. 1, Box 166, Houston, MN 99543)
Sometime in the spring of 1974 I was assigned to teach a course on Daniel and Revelation at Western Bible College (now Colorado Christian University) in Denver. That summer I did a lot of reading in the standard commentaries to prepare myself for the writing of lectures. In the syllabus of an earlier teacher of the course, the very able Ron Merryman, I found a reference to Robert Culver’s Daniel and the Latter Days. The book under review here is the third edition of Daniel and the Latter Days, now published with a new title. I read the book, and I am glad that I did. It is an excellent volume and indispensable reading for both students and teachers of Daniel. I have taught the course on Daniel and Revelation about twenty times since 1974, and each year I have recommended that my students read (among other things) this important book of Culver’s. For too many of those years it has been out of print, but happily it is now available in this new edition.
Culver is a careful and experienced teacher of the Scriptures, having held posts at a number of evangelical institutions (Wheaton College, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School, Grace Theological Seminary, and Southern Evangelical Seminary) during a long and distinguished career. In the present volume he seeks to rescue premillennialism from both its scholarly opponents as well as its sensationalist defenders.
The first half of the book is devoted to the finest definition of the millennium of which I am aware. In his definition he avoids the rapture question entirely. Culver appears to be an agnostic at this point taking no position. He argues that positions on the rapture debate depend on inferences while a higher degree of certainty for the truthfulness of premillennialism is both desirable and possible. Culver does not present arguments in favor of either dispensationalism or covenant theology. His sole concern is to define and defend the historical
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Christian doctrine of premillennialism. This is not to say that Culver offers criticisms of dispensationalism, covenant theology, or any of the rapture views; he simply feels that those topics are irrelevant to his own purposes, viz., a defense of historic, futurist premillennialism.
While dispensational readers might regret that Culver has not presented his views on these subjects, they will be very pleased with the way he presents his case on those topics that he does addre...
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