Tuesday, March 13, 2007
More on MacArthur, Premillennialism, and Amillennialism
Now that the Shepherd's Conference is over, MacArthur's notorious attack on amillennialism is available online, but it does cost $$$ to download (look for 2007 General Session 1 by John MacArthur). Pulpit Magazine has also taken up the cause, beginning with the first of three posts: "End Times Q&A (Part 1 of 3)."

Not that we amillennialists are taking this shot lying down. . . Fide-O has almost completely turned its blog over to discussing the issue. You can start with "Was Jesus an Amil?" and work forward from there. Additionally, Kim Riddlebarger has presented a helpful list of resources for study: "A Quick List of Amillennial Resources in Light of MacArthur's Charges." So has Justin Taylor: "Problems with Premillennialism." I would love to blog further on the millennial question as well as point out more great resources, but I simply don't have the time right now.

Is the millennium issue worth studying? Absolutely! As the Apostle John writes at the beginning of the book of Revelation: "Blessed is the one who reads the words of this prophecy aloud, and blessed are those who hear and obey the things written in it, because the time is near!" (Revelation 1:3) Panmillennialism is just not an option for faithful followers of Christ.

At the same time, humility is required. I appreciate what Timmy Brister says in "If Stats Could Speak":

Let’s face it. Controversy sure does the job for our blogs and stats, but I wonder what the gospel does when we proclaim it? I wonder what faithful exposition of Scripture or writing about substantive material from church history does to our stat pages? Does this diagram not speak volumes about the weakness of our affections and our lust for controversy?

My hunch is that if MacArthur preached on the gospel, the stats would have looked really different. I hope I would be wrong. But a man of MacArthur’s stature gets up and says some uncharitable and controversial things on a nonessential matter of eschatology, and we are stuck to this tar baby. Would to God that we would be so stuck and staggered by the gospel! One of the things I pray and long for is that we would see a movement when our affections and attention would be so riveted by the excellencies of Jesus Christ and His gospel that we are consumed by it. That would be revival. This? This shows our need for it.

UPDATE: Justin Taylor has also posted a link to a great article by Sam Storms: "Problems with Premillennialism."

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