Catherine Murawski #90
Narrative of Redemption
Final Paper – The Millennium
The Biblical teachings on the millennium are vague and difficult to recognize without a clear understanding of the Old Testament and its covenant promises to Israel. This paper will address the way that the Old Testament sets the stage for the future fulfillment of promises and covenants. Throughout the New Testament there are still continuations of these unfulfilled promises that have future inclinations. This paper will outline the teachings of the Old Testament that are left unfulfilled throughout the New Testament, and how these in addition to the prophecies in books like Revelation teach of the Millennium. In conclusion, the three common views of the Millennium, Premillennialism, Amillennialism, and Postmillennialism, according to biblical scholars will be recognized and discussed to come to a final conclusion of the Bible’s teaching on the Millennium. The Old Testament ending leaves the reader very unsatisfied as the resolution to much of the issues, suffering and discomfort of God’s people was not resolved. It is not until the death of Christ in the New Testament that the reader can understand the significance of God’s sovereignty in these times of seemingly unfulfilled promises. Most of the Old Testament covenants that remained unfulfilled or only partially fulfilled were those in regards to David. In the book of Jeremiah it is written: “Behold, the days are coming, declares the Lord, when I will raise up for David a righteous Branch, and he shall reign as king and deal wisely, and shall execute justice and righteousness in the land. In his days Judah will be saved, and Israel will dwell securely.” (23:5-6). David is promised that from his line a king will reign over all people. David is also promised that the Messiah would come from his line so it is understandable why the Jews living around Jesus were so shocked to discover that he would not be overthrowing their oppressive government and would instead be allowing them to kill him. In that time, this plan of Christ’s death was not clearly understood as the fulfillment of specific covenants. The expectation of him as Messiah in the eyes of the people was always in regards to his kingship and their freedom of oppression. Many of the prophecies in the Old Testament that the modern day reader can look at now and see the prediction of the end times are directed towards the view that there will be destruction before anything gets better. Although the Jews in the Old Testament through the gospels were living in times of distress, their suffering was not the fulfillment of covenant promises about suffering and the coming of Christ wasn’t the complete fulfillment of their freedom. According to Block, “The New Testament certainly does not encourage us to read the Old Testament in postmillennial terms… no mention is made of a golden age prior to Christ’s second coming.” (p. 70). Many of the prophetic verses in the Old Testament are quoted in the New Testament to reinforce the idea that 1. Christ will return after large amounts of calamity and distress (Ezekial 25-32, 38:1-6) 2. He will defeat opposing nations and people, and judge them (Isaiah 13-14) 3. God’s people will remain with Him in peace (Isaiah 2:1-5, 11:11). “In the last few chapters of Isaiah, the Holy Spirit portrays Israel in end times and beyond. In chapter 61 verse 2b, we see the dual character of this eventful period. The Lord's second coming is both for the day of vengeance of our God and to comfort all who mourn. Chapter 63 verses 1-6 further develop the theme of God's wrath during the tribulation, and then for the next several chapters the Holy Spirit alternates between God's protection and his judgment.” (Watts). Although it can be difficult to accept the lack of resolution in the Old Testament with these lingering unfulfilled covenants, the most substantial mistake that the Jews made and that is still...
References: to End Times". 2005. 27 November 2013.
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