Many are inspired by the apocalyptic book of Revelation. Peter Owen Jones discusses end times with Afrikaner Calvinists. Many Christian Churches are greatly concerned about the ultimate fate of everything in creation. They believe that God has a divine plan for the end of everything. The technical name for the subject of the end-times is eschatology from the Greek word eschatos which means last.
Many of the theories are inspired by the book of Revelation , the last book in the Bible.
However there are many millions who believe the doctrine of the tribulation is a literal and truthful description of what will happen sometime in the future. In the Matthew account, Jesus is presented as quoting Daniel explicitly. Originally of women and cognate with rape. Others understand a literal age of peace, but think the "thousand years" is a figure of speech. Extinction Extinction event Human extinction Genetic erosion Genetic pollution.
Much of the writing and teaching about the end times is apocalyptic, frightening and threatening, and it's important to remember that many mainstream churches do not believe that these teachings should be taken literally. But you can find a popular expression of these theories in the best-selling over 63 million copies by Left Behind series of novels, by Tim LaHaye and Jerry Jenkins, which bring the ideas right up to date. Some Christians do believe that the end of everything is going to happen soon. But don't panic; throughout recorded history people have believed that the end of the world is about to happen, and it hasn't happened yet.
In Peter Owen Jones met Afrikaner Calvinists in the veldt and discussed what the end of the world means to them. Millennialism is the belief that Christ will rule the earth for a period of 1, years the Millennium , and that this will be a good time when people accept Christ as King. At the end of this time Christ will judge the living and the dead. Modern millennialists are not dedicated to a period of years - the important idea is that there will be a period during which God's will is actually carried out on earth.
This is a very popular idea. It suggests that the world will be turned upside down and be taken over by the meek - or at least by the good and the righteous - and that this will be a time of peace and justice. It also implies a solution to the problem of evil i. Evildoers will be punished for their behaviour on earth and the good rewarded, as God balances the scales of justice at the end of time.
Premillennialism is a doctrine particularly popular among Evangelical Protestants in North America. Premillennialism is a pessimistic view of the world. It says that things are getting steadily worse on earth and will go on deteriorating until God has had enough and takes action in a way that will be catastrophic for humanity. Premillennialists believe the Second Coming of Christ will happen at the start of the Millennium the year period when Christ rules the world. Before this period will come a time of destruction, war and disaster on earth, called the tribulation, which will be ended by God defeating evil at the battle of Armageddon.
Those who follow this doctrine have a very different view of Christ to that held by other Christians. As one church leader Bob Edgar put it, "[Premillennialists] see a Messiah who leads an army and kills the bad guys, we see Jesus coming as a man of peace. Although premillennialism is sometimes said to be only years old, it's more like years old; early Christians held very similar beliefs about the Second Coming.
They believe that the important thing for Christians to do is to prepare themselves for the end-time and to convert as many people as possible into righteous believers ready for the day of judgement. They don't see much point in Christians trying to improve the world, since God is about to clean the world of its faults by destroying much of it and then remaking it. In practical terms premillennialists are in favour of evangelism and missionary work to convert people to belief in Christ, and less enthusiastic about church involvement in politics and social reform.
What do we do now? We go out and win people to Jesus. We get people ready for the second coming. We do everything we can to make sure that our churches talk about this. You need to preach about the second coming. You need to preach about heaven. You need to preach about hell. Some premillennialists take very reactionary positions on social and political issues. They argue that any attempt by Christians to reform society is religiously wrong, as it would get in the way of God's plan to end the world.
Millions of Christians believe that the tribulation is a period immediately before the Millennium when God's judgement is carried out on the world and humanity endures great suffering. Most mainstream Christians think the doctrine of the tribulation should be regarded as a poetic or symbolic way of describing the eternal conflict between good and evil. However there are many millions who believe the doctrine of the tribulation is a literal and truthful description of what will happen sometime in the future. During the tribulation the antichrist Satan's emissary will torture humanity, and God will go to war against the antichrist.
The tribulation ends after seven years when God defeats the antichrist.
The tribulation has provided the background to many novels and a great deal of prophetic writing. Most premillennialists believe that the Church will escape the Tribulation altogether, through the doctrine of the Rapture. One group of premillennialists called 'posttribulationists' believe that the righteous believers have to remain on earth throughout the tribulation, but that God keeps them safe.
Dispensationalism is a theological belief system devised by J. Darby founder of the Exclusive Brethren that divides human time into different ages, called dispensations. It aims to show how God's plans and purposes have changed throughout history not gradually but in large steps.
Each dispensation is a period during which God works in a specific way. There is a change of dispensation when God gives humanity a different revelation of his will to follow. Another way of looking at it is to consider a dispensation as a period of government. Different governments bring different ways of running a country - in different dispensations the same God runs the world in a different way. Scofield, editor of the Scofield Reference Bible, devised the most commonly used dispensational breakdown of human history. He listed seven dispensations:.
As a dispensation, grace begins with the death and resurrection of Christ The point of testing is no longer legal obedience as the condition of salvation, but acceptance or rejection of Christ, with good works as a fruit of salvation. So in the present dispensation God tests us by seeing if we reject or accept Christ. In the previous dispensation God tested us by seeing if we obeyed the law.
For those who accept it, dispensationalism provides a way of interpreting the Bible literally and consistently without contradictions. Dispensationalists say that in each dispensation God is using different revelations and so the Bible only has to be consistent within a particular dispensation. So contradictions in the Bible are only contradictions on the surface. If studied properly they turn out not to be contradictions at all, because different rules operate within each dispensation.
Critics say that the idea of dispensationalism is something that Darby made up himself "concocted in complete contradiction to all main Christian traditions", said James Barr , but Darby believed that the idea had been given to him by God. Dispensationalism wasn't a brand new doctrine anyway; Joachim of Fiore had put a similar idea forward in the 12th century CE. In this version of dispensationalism the dispensations are not rigidly separated at an instant in time but gradually progress from one to another.
In each dispensation it's possible to find early signs of the dispensation to come.
Progressive dispensationalists interpret the Bible in a less literal way than other dispensationalists. Postmillennialists believe that the Second Coming of Christ will come at the end of the Millennium and mark the full achievement of the kingdom of God on earth. They believe that we are already in the Millennium, which began with Christ's resurrection , and that the world is gradually moving towards the promised time of peace and righteousness. Christ is ruling earth from heaven, through his church and through believers, and his kingdom and rule are steadily growing.
Please enter your email address associated with your Salem All-Pass account, then click Continue. We'll send you an email with steps on how to reset your password. Wondering about the end times and the rapture can cause confusion, worry and fear for a lot of people, even Christians! For ages people have tried to figure out the exact and time that the prophecy of Jesus's return will happen.
The best place to turn for answers about the rapture is Scripture! We have compiled Bible verses about the rapture for you to read and study. God tells us everything we need to know in the Bible. There are some things that God has left a mystery for us. Let us be confident in what He has revealed and live a life of joy knowing we will spend eternity in heaven! And then all the peoples of the earthwill mourn when they see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven, with power and great glory.
And we eagerly await a Savior from there, the Lord Jesus Christ, 21 who, by the power that enables him to bring everything under his control, will transform our lowly bodies so that they will be like his glorious body. There will be a time of distress such as has not happened from the beginning of nations until then.
But at that time your people—everyone whose name is found written in the book—will be delivered.