Free Republic
Browse · Search
Religion
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

MacArthurís Millennial Manifesto
The Midwest Center for Theological Studies ^ | April 25, 2007 | Sam Waldron

Posted on 05/02/2007 11:53:00 AM PDT by topcat54

[I am going to try something new over the next couple of weeks in this blog. I have just now named it “blog a book.” I am responding to MacArthur’s recent introductory sermon at the 2007 Shepherds’ Conference. You can help me write this response by your comments and input. So here goes with Chapter 1.]

In fact, this brings me to what is perhaps the major reason why I am writing this response. Actually, I am thankful to MacArthur for lending us his name. Now that he has valiantly addressed this subject. We are at liberty to respond to him using his own fame to help along our cause. And our fundamental reason for so responding is simply to set the record straight. No one who thinks he understands the Scriptures on an important point can bear to see others misrepresent views he believes are thoroughly biblical. I and my fellow Amillennialists really do believe that we have biblical eschatology right. How then can we endure seeing our views drastically misrepresented? We cannot, and allegiance to the truth demands that we respond. We thank Dr. John MacArthur for making it possible by his message for us to use his name to set the record straight.

(Excerpt) Read more at mctsowensboro.org ...


TOPICS: Current Events; Theology
KEYWORDS: amillennialism; dispensationalism
Waldron has posted a complete transcript of MacArthur's remarks on his web site. You can judge for yourself whether MacArthur has actually depicted those position he opposes.

He is working through his critique of MacArthur in five parts.

Part 1: MacArthur’s Major Thesis
Part 2: MacArthur’s Historical Position
Part 3: MacArthur’s Interesting Objection
Part 4: MacArthur’s Jewish Evangelism
Part 5: MacArthur’s Deep Burden

1 posted on 05/02/2007 11:53:02 AM PDT by topcat54
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: All
... whether MacArthur has actually depicted those position he opposes

That should read "accurately depicted the position". Sorry.

2 posted on 05/02/2007 11:55:21 AM PDT by topcat54 ("... knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience." (James 1:3))
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: ItsOurTimeNow; HarleyD; suzyjaruki; nobdysfool; jkl1122; Calvinist_Dark_Lord; Dr. Eckleburg; ...
Reformed Eschatology Ping List (REPL)

"For these are the days of vengeance, that all things which are written may be fulfilled." (Luke 21:22)

3 posted on 05/02/2007 11:55:54 AM PDT by topcat54 ("... knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience." (James 1:3))
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: All
Now I am not upset about MacArthur’s remark that Calvin would have been a Premillennialist in our day. As outrageous as this statement may be, I suppose he may have said it in jest. It certainly is completely incapable of historical demonstration. My purpose, however, is simply to note what MacArthur straightforwardly admits here. Calvin and with him most Calvinists historically until today have not been Premillennial.

Of course, much more could be said along this line. MacArthur admits elsewhere that Augustine was not in favor of his eschatology, but was in MacArthur’s view a proponent (horrors!) of replacement theology: “[Ronald] Diprose lays much of that at the feet of replacement theology that rises out of Augustine and the few before him.” Augustine is commonly understood and acknowledged to be the one who by abandoning Premillennialism and defending an Amillennial interpretation of Revelation 20 set the Church on an Amillennial course for a thousand years. (The key passage is found in the City of God Book 20, chapters 6-10.)

What has MacArthur calmly admitted here? He has admitted that the major historical defenders of his understanding of sovereign grace and election have consistently rejected his eschatology. MacArthur thinks that Calvinistic views of election ought to lead—must logically and clearly lead—to Premillennial views of eschatology. Yet, and in stunning contrast, church history shows just the opposite connection. The major proponents of sovereign election have been also the major advocates of Amillennialism. Augustine almost single-handedly opposed the insidious and centuries-long drift of the early church into Pelagianism. The view of sovereign election held by MacArthur is commonly known by the very name of Calvin. Calvin’s theological descendants have been its major and sometimes lonely defenders in the modern era. The very modern age that marked the rise of Premillennialism also marked the fall of Calvinism. Yet, in spite of all this, MacArthur tells us that Calvinism in a clear and logical way leads to Premillennialism.

Sam Waldron


4 posted on 05/02/2007 1:39:05 PM PDT by topcat54 ("... knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience." (James 1:3))
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: topcat54
The very modern age that marked the rise of Premillennialism also marked the fall of Calvinism.

Exactly. More's the pity.

God is either sovereign and in control of His entire creation and reigning from heaven as we speak according to His perfect will, ordained from before the foundation of the world...

Or God is waiting...waiting...waiting...

5 posted on 05/02/2007 2:09:39 PM PDT by Dr. Eckleburg ("I don't think they want my respect; I think they want my submission." - Flemming Rose)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 4 | View Replies]

To: topcat54; Dr. Eckleburg
I'm only on page 3, and it's true, that to understand eschatology, one must get(the meaning of) Israel right. Let's see if he does.
6 posted on 05/02/2007 2:33:14 PM PDT by 1000 silverlings ("The Bible is the rock on which our Republic rests." Andrew Jackson, President of U.S.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: topcat54; Dr. Eckleburg; Lee N. Field; Uncle Chip; Ping-Pong
Quoting Acts 15 again, I see one problem we have and so it really matters who is correct.

JM says that after the Gentiles have come in, then Christ returns to build his tabernacle. However, this is not what the scripture says. It says after Christ has visited the Gentiles and taken out of them a people for His name, then He will return and build the tabernacle.

However, when we examine Acts 15, we see that what Peter and James are talking about is the conversion of Cornelius and his household in Acts 10, and their baptism by the Holy Spirit. That is Christ visiting the Gentiles, confirmed by James in verse 14..

Further, we have verse 12, where Barnabus and Paul relate the miracles and wonders God did by them among the Gentiles. God takes a nation out of a nation by signs and wonders. Deut 4:34, and God uses the Apostles, doesn't have to do it personally.

James affirms that Peter's conversion of Cornelius and his house is that event, the visitation, and the prophecy is fulfilled.. The building of the tabernacle is the Great Commission, the coming in of the Gentiles.

I contend on this important fact, JM gets it wrong. Your opinions?

7 posted on 05/02/2007 3:41:47 PM PDT by 1000 silverlings ("The Bible is the rock on which our Republic rests." Andrew Jackson, President of U.S.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: topcat54; Dr. Eckleburg

I don’t see where he even deals with Jesus being the Seed, and that the imoportance of Abraham is that he believed God. He just seems to leave out alot.


8 posted on 05/02/2007 3:52:34 PM PDT by 1000 silverlings ("The Bible is the rock on which our Republic rests." Andrew Jackson, President of U.S.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: topcat54; Dr. Eckleburg
It looks like somewhere along the line, the times of the Gentiles and the fulness of the Gentiles came to mean the same thing. I don't think they are.
9 posted on 05/02/2007 5:07:38 PM PDT by 1000 silverlings ("The Bible is the rock on which our Republic rests." Andrew Jackson, President of U.S.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: 1000 silverlings; Dr. Eckleburg
one must get(the meaning of) Israel right. Let's see if he does.

He does not. In addition, as Waldron observes:

It is interesting to note that in his message MacArthur deliberately avoids presenting what he is teaching as Dispensationalism. It is clear that he wants to be viewed as coming before his audience on this occasion simply as a representative of main-line Premillennialism. ...

These are all of MacArthur’s references Dispensationalism by name in his message. It seems quite clear that MacArthur is eager to present himself merely as a simple Premillennialist in this message and not to be viewed as defending in it Dispensationalism.

Now from a certain perspective, who can fault him for this? No doubt, he believes that much of what he calls the wacky world of Dispensationalism is nonsensical, indefensible, and quite distinct from historic Premillennialism. We agree with this assessment. In fact, we admit that Historic Premillenialism has little or nothing to do with the fables of modern Dispensationalism.

Perhaps MacArthur expected his audience to miss that fact that his view of Israel and the Church is not what most non-dispensational (aka historic) premils believe on the subject. In fact Justin Martyr is closer to historic premil position that MacArthur. And Justin saw the Church as the inheritor of the blessing to Israel made to the Seed, Jesus Christ.

But John does not want to identify with the wackier element within dispensationalism. He wants some respect. In order to get that he needs to get closer to the position on Israel that he opposes. Waldron continues:

What is my point? Historic Premillennialism—the Premillennialism of the Early Church period—held what MacArthur chooses to describe as supercessionism. MacArthur (unintentionally I am sure) misrepresents the real state of the historical debate. When he paints the issue as Premillennialism versus Amillennialism, he distorts the true state of the debate. It is not Premillennialism versus Amillennialism. It is also and as well Dispensational Premillennialism (which is what MacArthur holds) versus Historic Premillennialism (also and significantly known as Covenant Premillennialism). It is, in fact, Dispensationalism versus everybody else. Why? Because everybody else holds a version of what MacArthur calls replacement theology or supersessionism. It is Dispensational Premillennialism versus Historic Premillennialism, Amillennialism, and Postmillennialism.

10 posted on 05/02/2007 5:19:04 PM PDT by topcat54 ("... knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience." (James 1:3))
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 6 | View Replies]

To: topcat54

Yes, he is murky on the kingdom, I don’t think he has a clear idea of what he is trying to defend. Let’s call him over here, lol


11 posted on 05/02/2007 5:32:50 PM PDT by 1000 silverlings ("The Bible is the rock on which our Republic rests." Andrew Jackson, President of U.S.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 10 | View Replies]

To: topcat54
Sure have been alot of MacArthur posts lately.

BTW...as I post this I'm listen to Grace To You online. LOL

12 posted on 05/02/2007 8:19:57 PM PDT by fkabuckeyesrule (Good News everyone!!!! It's baseball season!!!!!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: topcat54; 1000 silverlings
Perhaps MacArthur expected his audience to miss that fact that his view of Israel and the Church is not what most non-dispensational (aka historic) premils believe on the subject. In fact Justin Martyr is closer to historic premil position that MacArthur.

Interesting. Change the bottle; keep the wine. (Or is it keep the bottle; change the wine?)

13 posted on 05/02/2007 10:33:03 PM PDT by Dr. Eckleburg ("I don't think they want my respect; I think they want my submission." - Flemming Rose)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 10 | View Replies]

To: fkabuckeyesrule

He’s a popular guy who made a rather controversial statement at his Shepherds’ Conference.


14 posted on 05/03/2007 4:56:26 AM PDT by topcat54 ("... knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience." (James 1:3))
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 12 | View Replies]

To: 1000 silverlings; Dr. Eckleburg
The time of the gentiles has to do specifically with the judgment upon Jerusalem that happened in AD70.

The fullness (or full number) of gentiles ala Romans 11 has do with the calling of the gentiles to faith in Christ, to be ingrafted into the root of faith, by the power of the gospel.

One curious thing about these passages is the expectation by some that something will happen after these times. They read it as "until (a) then (b) will occur". But neither text is constructed that way. The text merely says "until (A)". E.g., it does not say "until the times of the gentiles then Jerusalem will be untrampled."

The untrampled part is not in the text.

15 posted on 05/03/2007 5:03:11 AM PDT by topcat54 ("... knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience." (James 1:3))
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 9 | View Replies]

To: topcat54; Uncle Chip

Thanks TC, UC ping to above


16 posted on 05/03/2007 5:12:03 AM PDT by 1000 silverlings ("The Bible is the rock on which our Republic rests." Andrew Jackson, President of U.S.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 15 | View Replies]

To: topcat54; 1000 silverlings
The time of the gentiles has to do specifically with the judgment upon Jerusalem that happened in AD70.

But Luke 21 says that the times of the Gentiles will continue after the Diaspora which took place from 70 AD to 135 AD. So just exactly when were these times completed????

17 posted on 05/03/2007 5:30:29 AM PDT by Uncle Chip (TRUTH : Ignore it. Deride it. Allegorize it. Interpret it. But you can't ESCAPE it.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 15 | View Replies]

To: Uncle Chip; 1000 silverlings; Dr. Eckleburg
But Luke 21 says that the times of the Gentiles will continue after the Diaspora which took place from 70 AD to 135 AD. So just exactly when were these times completed????

What makes you think they have been completed? The text does not say anything about what allegedly might happen after this time mentioned. Luke 21 is a warning to Israel to repent and a warning to believers to flee from the destruction when they do not repent. It is not a promise of any type of national restoration.

The judgment upon Israel by the nations was complete. It is only the spiritual nation that matters to God today.

18 posted on 05/03/2007 7:01:25 AM PDT by topcat54 ("... knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience." (James 1:3))
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 17 | View Replies]

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
Religion
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794
FreeRepublic.com is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson