Alistair recently posted on his site a very good treatment of his theological history. I very much understood where he was coming from and wanted to express here some of the reasons I believe the things I do.
Many of the people that I still have as friends continue to be mildly dispensational and definitely Baptist. I understand why I am a postmillenial, paedobaptist presbyterian. Many of my friends on the other hand don’t understand at the least and at the most think I’m crazy. I became very interested in Greg Bahnsen after a friend (a baptist friend) loaned me some of his debates with atheists. I was very impressed with Bahnsen’s thinking and saw how much of what he said fit with the scripture. I tend to be slow to latch on to new ideas but at times I run into things that are rather close to what I was already thinking but I didn’t really know how to put it to words. Listening to Bahnsen made me want to understand more of his reconstructionism and his postmillenialism. I still remember the day that I was listening to his tapes “Why I am a Postmillenialist”. I felt that he had a better grasp of eschatology than I had heard before but I wanted to be sure that what he said was really in the Bible. After listening to his explanation of 1 Corinthians 15 and especially verses 20-28 a few times I came to understand what he was saying. It kind of clicked when I came to understand that the passage leaves no room for a millenium on earth after the return of Christ. The dispensational premillenialist can hold his position by ignoring the clear idea that the defeat of the last enemy is accomplished by the final resurrection. The last enemy (death) is defeated by the resurrection that occurrs when Christ returns. There is no place for future enemies at the end of the millenium as the premillenialist must claim.
The biggest problem my friends have with this is Revelation 20 and their literalist reading of that (and their view of Israel). One problem among many with this is that they cannot put a “literal” reading of Revelation 20 up against a literal reading of 1 Corinthians 15. They may say that I ignore Revelation 20 (without basis) but it seems to me they ignore 1 Corinthians 15. They can’t have it both ways. Some say that Revelation 19 depicts Christ coming on a literal horse from heaven but that the sword coming out of his mouth is figurative. Why? Isn’t it rather clear that it is all figurative. Yes, the word of Christ is a two-edged sword that defeats the enemies of God. Isn’t this nothing more than a picture of the triumph of the gospel in this age?
Just like Alistair, it becomes easier to look at a wider range of beliefs and look for the good. When postmillenialism and amillenialism is linked to unbelieving liberalism it makes you wonder. If some people cannot even understand where the postmillenialist is coming from (to the extent they call them liberal) can we be sure that they know where others are coming from?. Just some of my thoughts. Thanks for reading.