The Fundamental Differences Between Pre- And Postmillenarians -- By: David A. Mcclenahan

Journal: Bibliotheca Sacra
Volume: BSAC 076:303 (Jul 1919)
Article: The Fundamental Differences Between Pre- And Postmillenarians
Author: David A. Mcclenahan


The Fundamental Differences Between Pre- And Postmillenarians

David A. Mcclenahan

What is the fundamental difference between a premillenarian and a postmillenarian?

1. It is not that there is to be a second advent. Both premillenarians and postmillenarians believe in a second advent. We differ as to the purpose of that advent, but not as to the fact of it.

2. It is not that we are to be watchful for our Lord’s coming. Both believe that we should be. We differ as to the meaning of watching, but not as to the fact of it.

3. It is not as to whether Christ will have a kingdom, and that the saints will share with Him in that reign. We both believe that. We differ as to the nature of that kingdom, but not as to the fact of it.

4. It is not even that the saints are to reign with Christ on this earth. Many people believe that heaven is to be on this earth after it is rejuvenated, redeemed, and glorified, who hold nothing in common with premillenarians. Thousands have believed this, and thousands still believe this who are not premillenarians.

5. It is not that there is to be a period at the end of this world when righteousness will be absolutely triumphant. Neither premillenarians nor postmillenarians believe this. A premillenarian believes that, even after Christ reigns a thousand years upon this earth, there will still be much evil in the world for Satan to work on when he is loosed by Christ, and that there will follow the awful period of the final apostasy. A postmillenarian believes that the world will be Christianized by the influences of the gospel before the Second Advent; but that there will still be much evil in the world to be separated from the good when Christ comes. A premillenarian does

not know how fully the world will be Christianized by the personal reign of Christ, although he has all those hundreds of texts of Scripture which foretell the golden age. A postmillenarian does not know how fully the world will be Christianized by the teaching of the gospel, although he has all those same hundreds of texts of Scripture which foretell the golden age.

6. It is not as to whether there will be one resurrection or two resurrections a thousand years apart, although this is an important difference between the two schools of thought. Premillenarians base their belief in two resurrections on one Scripture text, and that text found in the most symbolical book in the Bible, and in the most symbolical section of the book. Postmillenarians base their belief in one resurrection on scores of plain texts in all of which the resurrections of both the righteous and the wicked are represented as occurr...

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