Category Archives: Objections

THE NARROW GATE AND THE POSTMILLENNIAL HOPE

narrow-gatePMT 2016-072 by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.

Introduction

I am frequently asked how postmillennialism can stand since Jesus speaks of the narrow gate to salvation. This is certainly a reasonable question, because it is a biblical one.

Inquirers often challenge me: I just can’t imagine this present world becoming a Christian majority at any point, especially in light of Christ’s wide and narrow gates and many being called, but few chosen, etc. I don’t see that at all. Never has the world been a friend of God and I don’t see a future scene like that at all in Scripture.

This is an important question. Let’s consider how we can resolve the theoretical problem. Continue reading

MISGUIDED REJECTIONS OF POSTMILLENNIALISM (4)

Hasty dimissalPMT 1016-004 by Greg L. Bahnsen (edited by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.)

(Gentry note: This is the fourth in a four-part series on “Misguided Grounds for Rejecting Postmillennialism.” This article was originally written by Dr. Greg L. Bahnsen, but is presented here as edited by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr. In this article, Dr. Bahnsen considers “Premature Charges.”)

In addition to the misguided and failed attempts to dismiss postmillennialism based on (1) newspaper exegesis, (2) misrepresentation, and (3) the application of two-edged criticism (which applies to the critic as well as the position criticized), there are current day charges against the position which are premature or unfounded. Continue reading

MISGUIDED REJECTIONS OF POSTMILLENNIALISM (3)

Miss targetPMT 2016-003 by Greg L. Bahnsen (edited by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.)

(Ken Gentry note: This is the third in a four-part series on the sad practice of rejecting postmillennialism on faulty grounds. Dr. Bahnsen wrote this material and Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr., has edited it and offered here. This rejection falls on its own sword in that it involves two-edged criticisms. Let’s see how this is so.)

A third infelicitous way in which postmillennialism has been disposed of is by means of (allegedly) critical considerations which in fact apply as much to the other eschatological positions as to postmillennialism. This is particularly embarrassing as a scholarly lapse. But what do we mean? Continue reading

MISGUIDED REJECTIONS OF POSTMILLENNIALISM (2)

Bad researchPMT 2016-002 by Greg L. Bahnsen (edited by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.)

This is the second in a four-part series on “Misguided Grounds for Rejecting Postmillennialism.” This article was originally written by Dr. Greg L. Bahnsen, but is presented here as edited by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr. In this article, Dr. Bahnsen considers “Misrpresentation.”

Misrepresentation Documented

Postmillennialism has not only been discarded in this century on clearly unorthodox grounds; it has also been made a straw man so that modern advocates of the other schools of interpretation can easily knock it down and get on to other interests. The worst possible interpretation is put on postmillennial tenets, or the eccentric aspect of some postmillennial writer’s position is set forth as representing the basic school of thought. Continue reading

MISGUIDED REJECTIONS OF POSTMILLENNIALISM (1)

NewspaperPMT 2016-001 by Greg L. Bahnsen (edited by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.)

Introduction by Ken Gentry

Postmillennialism is perhaps the easiest eschatological system to misunderstand. And misunderstanding leads to rejection. This is the first in a four-part series on “Misguided Grounds for Rejecting Postmillennialism.” This article was originally written by Greg L. Bahnsen, but is presented here as edited by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr. In this article, Bahnsen considers the problem of “Newspaper Exegesis.”

Newspaper Exegesis

It must be observed that postmillennialism lost favor (and today remains held in disfavor) with conservative theologians for manifestly unorthodox and insufficient reasons. Extra-biblical reasoning, as well as lazy or poor scholarship, has intruded itself into Christian discussions of eschatology. I will highlight four misguided grounds often used for rejecting this hope-filled eschatology. In this article I will focus on: Newspaper Exegesis. Continue reading

WARFIELD ON 1 JOHN 2:2 (3)

Cross and world“Jesus Christ the Propitiation for the Whole World” (3)
PMT 2015-0144 by Benjamin B. Warfield

[Gentry note: This is part 3 of an excellent article by renowned postmillennial Princeton scholar, B. B. Warfield.]

The Meaning of “Propitiation”

The expedient made use of by many commentators in their endeavor to escape from this maze of contradictions is to distinguish between Christ as our “Advocate” and Christ as our “Propitiation,” and to connect actual salvation with him only in the former function. Thus Richard Rothe tells us that “the propitiation in Christ concerns the whole world,” but “only those in Christ have an advocate in Christ,” with the intimation that it is Christ’s advocacy which “makes the efficacy of his propitiation effective before God.” In this view the propitiation is conceived as merely laying a basis for actual forgiveness of sins, and is spoken of therefore rather as “sufficient” than efficacious—becoming efficacious only through the act of faith on the part of the believer by which he secures Christ as his Advocate. This is the view presented by B. F. Westcott also, according to whom Christ is advocate exclusively for Christians, while he is a propitiation for the whole world. His propitiatory death on earth was for all men; his advocacy in heaven is for those only who believe in him. Here, there is a universal atonement taught, with a limited application, contingent on actual faith: “the efficacy of his work for the individual depends upon fellowship with him.” Continue reading

WARFIELD ON 1 JOHN 2:2 (2)

Savior of world“Jesus Christ the Propitiation for the Whole World” (2)
PMT 2015-0143 by Benjamin B. Warfield

[Gentry note: This is part 2 of an excellent article by renowned postmillennial Princeton scholar, B. B. Warfield.]

“And he is the propitiation for our sins; and not for ours only, but also for the whole world.”
(1 John 2:2)

The Problem of “the World”

The search for John’s meaning naturally begins with an attempt to ascertain what he intends by “the world.” He sets it in contrast with an “our” by which primarily his readers and himself are designated: “And he is himself a propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but for the whole world.” John’s readers apparently are immediately certain Christian communities in Asia Minor; and it is possible to confine the “our” strictly to them. In that case it is not impossible to interpret “the whole world,” which is brought into contrast with the Christians specifically of Asia Minor, as referring to the whole body of Christians extended throughout the world. Continue reading