The Highway

An Accusation against Amil

Posted By: Tom

An Accusation against Amil - Sat Nov 21, 2020 11:30 PM

I heard another accusation today about Amillennialism that actually is a new one on me.

The following is basically my attempt to give the gist of what was said. I think I am giving a correct understanding.
That Amillenniallism has its roots in Platonism (philosophically) and Gnosticism (theologically).
Among the claims they made is that although the early Church eventually responded to heresy by forming doctrines such as the Trinity; they did not get rid of the influence of Gnosticism in their eschatology. They claim that Gnosticismís influence put too much on the spiritual rather than the physical. Saying that the physical (Earth) is bad and the spiritual (heaven) is good.
At this point, I do not intend to answer them. Rather, I would like to understand the issue better. I thought the Highway would be a great resource for that.
If you know of something that would help on that front, I would appreciate your input.
Tom
Posted By: Pilgrim

Re: An Accusation against Amil - Sat Nov 21, 2020 11:57 PM

My answer is the same for this and ALL such rantings..... the issue is NOT whether any particular view flows out of any pagan influence to whatever degree is claimed. The issue is ONLY... What does God's inspired, infallible and inerrant Word, the Bible teach. There have been hundreds of thousands of faithful believers throughout history who have held to the Amillennial view of eschatology who have no knowledge of Plato nor of the Gnostics. They were students of Scripture; men and women who faithfully prayed for the Spirit of God to open their eyes, minds and hearts to see the truth of God in the Bible. They compared Scripture with Scripture using Scripture's hermeneutical principles.And, their understanding of the end times is known as Amillennialism, i.e., no literal 1000 years of spiritual revival on the earth but rather the present since the first coming of Christ IS NOW the so-called "Millennium" where Christ reigns from heaven and who is NOW establishing his kingdom. The interim time before Christ returns to bring the eschaton of all things will be one of decay, persecution, lawlessness, wars, etc., etc. But then the New Heaven and New Earth will be formed and eternal joy will rule the day for God's true people who will worship the one true God in truth and delight in His presence. Amillennialism is not a by-product of Platonism nor Gnosticism, nor any other pagan philosophy. It is the teaching of God's revealed truth.

David Engelsma's series is an adequate defense of Amillennialism, which you can read here: A Defense of (Reformed) Amillennialism.
Posted By: Tom

Re: An Accusation against Amil - Mon Nov 23, 2020 8:08 AM

Pilgrim

My embracing the Amil view about 5-6 years back (maybe longer) came mainly through reading books like William Hendrilksen's book 'More than Conquerors', and other articles. I had been studying the various eschatological views for quite some time and as I looked at the Scripture passages each position used for their views, I started leaning more and more towards the Amil position.

I definitely agree with you that ultimately it is God inspired Word, that I need to bow to.

My wanting to understand more about the history of eschatology, has more to do with learning about the history of Christianity. For example, my learning about the doctrines that came out of the Protestant Reformation, contributed to where I am today. Some of that knowledge came the resources here on the Highway.

I guess my point is, I was hoping to dig a little deeper into history to hopefully help me gain more understanding of Amillennialism.

Maybe, my studies would be better used elsewhere?
I certainly plan on reading the article you provided.

I thought I would also let you know, that almost all the Reformed Baptist theologians and pastors, I have listened to or read in past few years are Amii. That is not to say that I only listen and read Baptists, it is because I am one.

Tom
Posted By: Pilgrim

Re: An Accusation against Amil - Mon Nov 23, 2020 11:28 AM

It seems you have switched horses in the middle of the stream. giggle

You initially began with:

Quote
I heard another accusation today about Amillennialism that actually is a new one on me.

The following is basically my attempt to give the gist of what was said. I think I am giving a correct understanding.
That Amillenniallism has its roots in Platonism (philosophically) and Gnosticism (theologically).

It seems, at least to me, that you were asking for reactions from people or perhaps more, a refutation of that specious accusation, which charges the Church with embracing paganism and its philosophies to formulate its doctrine of eschatology, which began long before the Reformation and even continues today. That's a serious matter. But now, you write:

Quote
My wanting to understand more about the history of eschatology, has more to do with learning about the history of Christianity.

Sorta roundabout way to get here from there, eh? grin Buy or borrow Philip Schaff's History of the Christian Church 8 vols. which would be a good start on church history. It's the classic set found at most bible colleges and seminaries. At least it was. With the way things have been going (downhill) over the past few decades, perhaps that is no longer the case? [Linked Image] Anyway, enjoy studying church history. I found it fascinating and enlightening.
Posted By: Tom

Re: An Accusation against Amil - Tue Nov 24, 2020 2:06 AM

Pilgrim
In hindsight you are correct it does seem I have switched horses in the middle of the stream.

I apologize for that; I guess when I saw that accusation; I realized I had very little knowledge of the historic aspect of the issue.
I appreciate your input.

Tom
Posted By: Pilgrim

Re: An Accusation against Amil - Tue Nov 24, 2020 2:28 AM

Have you ever read any individual who embraces Amillennialism cite Plato or some Gnostic? scratchchin In all my years, speaking strictly personally, I never have come across any such thing. What I have read is exposition of Scripture from those individuals. So again, accusations of borrowed Platonism or Gnosticism is a specious argument at best. The Bible and the Bible alone is the sole and final authority in all matters of faith (doctrine) and life. Let those who don't like Amillennialism present their view from sound hermeneutics and exegesis... else they are wasting our time. igiveup
Posted By: Tom

Re: An Accusation against Amil - Tue Nov 24, 2020 9:47 PM

Pilgrim

No I have not heard anyone who embraces Amiilennialism cite Plato or some Gnostic; that is a very good point.

Although the person who made this accusation is himself a 5 point Calvinist (or at least I think he claims to be). I wonder what he would say to Arminians who make the claim that Calvinism is based on Augustine's Platonic views?

But I digress, that is off the topic.

Tom
Posted By: 042Dave

Re: An Accusation against Amil - Wed Jan 06, 2021 5:48 PM

Jesus preached Amillennialism in his gospel of the Kingdom. So the best place to grasp a deeper understanding is in a search of the 4 gospels for the characteristics of the Kingdom. It is one reason why the Pharisees rejected him. They expected the physical Millennial Kingdom based on a literal reading of the Kingdom Prophecies. Many do the same today.

But a physical kingdom did not show when Daniel said it would. It was instead a spiritual and hidden from all but the born-again.

So it remains hidden to all but the born-again even today.

Peter preaches the Amillennial gospel of the Kingdom at Pentecost where we can glean the details.
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