The Two Modes Of Humanity, Part 2: The History Of The View -- By: Philippe R. Sterling

Journal: Journal of the Grace Evangelical Society
Volume: JOTGES 27:52 (Spring 2014)
Article: The Two Modes Of Humanity, Part 2: The History Of The View
Author: Philippe R. Sterling

The Two Modes Of Humanity,
Part 2: The History
Of The View

Philippe R. Sterling

Vista Ridge Bible Fellowship
Lewisville, Texas

I. Introduction

There has been a continuing stream among dispensational premillennialists from the 19th century to the present upholding the view of an eternal destiny for a sanctified natural humanity. They will be capable of reproduction and live on the new earth (and perhaps eventually colonizing other planets). There will also be a sanctified and resurrected/glorified humanity, no longer marrying and reproducing, with the overcomers within that group ruling with Christ over the new heaven and new earth and the capital city New Jerusalem. Some interpreters have also strongly objected to this view. This article will survey the supportive tradition, beginning with John Nelson Darby and continuing to the present day.

II. Nineteenth Century Advocates

A. John Nelson Darby (1800-1882)

Darby was an influential figure among the Plymouth Brethren and an early dispensational premillennialist. F. S. Elmore cites him as a progenitor of the view of two modes of humanity in the eternal state. “Hoyt agreed with Darby that there would be saints living in their natural state forever, thus allowing

for two modes of life in the eternal state.”1 The two following quotes from the collected works of Darby suggest that he was an adherent of the view:

Because when, for us at any rate, “immortality sets in,” and that is the proper hope of our calling, there will be saints on earth in quite a different state.2

The leaves of the tree are for the healing of the Gentiles… Those that are in the city find food in its fruit, and from its leaves proceed the resources of life for those who are still on the earth.3

B. George N. H. Peters (1825-1909)

Peters was an American Lutheran minister and author of The Theocratic Kingdom. Published in 1884 by Funk and Wagnalls, The Theocratic Kingdom, a three-volume defense of dispensational premillennial theology , was Peter’s major work. It was reprinted in 1952 and 1972 by Kregel Publications. In the preface of the 1952 edition, Wilbur E. Smith calls it “the most exhaustive, thoroughly annotated and logically arranged study...

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