Author: Sproul, R.C.
Genre: Theology - Eschatology
Tags: Eschatology

Rick Shrader‘s Review:

This is a 2015 edition of a 1998 defense of preterism by R.C. Sproul. Sproul has become the most prominent defender of preterism over the last few years. He divides preterism into two basic divisions: partial and full. He describes himself and Kenneth Gentry as partial preterists, and categorizes Max R. King, Edward Stevens, David Chilton and others as full preterists. The book is also an extended evaluation of James Stuart Russell’s classic 1878 book, The Parousia. Russell was definitely a full preterist. Full preterists see all prophecy concerning the tribulation, rapture, and glorious return of Christ having been fulfilled by 70 AD in the first century. This takes quite a bit of spiritualization to accomplish but full preterists seem to do it without blushing. Partial preterists reserve a few prophecies for the last days, specifically the glorious return of Christ. Sproul, however, also sees a “judgment coming” of Christ fulfilled by 70 AD. Almost all preterists are also post-millennialists and see the kingdom of God starting immediately or soon after 70 AD. That, to them, was the end of the “age” and of the Jewish economy. Israel has now become the church and whatever millennial promises were made to Israel now belong to the church in a spiritualized way. The many reasons for this view would take too long to explain in this review. However, the two most important to Sproul, emphasized in his conclusion, are 1) the time references especially “this generation” which, he thinks, means all of the tribulation prophecies had to be fulfilled to the first-century believers, and 2) the view that the book of Revelation was written before 70 AD. This, in their view, obviously had to be true or else why would John write them in 95 AD as still future.

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