Prof. David Engelsma
Readings Matthew 24 and II Thess.2:1-3
Signs are: visible representation of invisible reality e.g. a miracle of healing speaks of Christ’s power to save.
Signs are also visible warning of an invisible danger (as a road sign) or Noah’s building the ark.
The 1000 years of Revelation 20 have these characteristics:
- Satan bound from deceiving the nations.
- Saints live and reign with Christ in their souls in heaven.
- Satan is afterwards loosed and deceiving the nations attacks the church (beloved city).
Engelsma exposed all the millenialisms:
Postmillenialism with its prospering of the gospel in a golden age before Christ returns (denying the fact Christ said it would be like the days of Noah and the few on the narrow way)
Premillenialism with Christ coming to reign on earth over a Jewish Kingdom after church is secretly raptured.
Both these heresies deny that there are visible signs of the end.
Reformed Amillenialism teaches that we are now in the millennium which is a number symbolic of a long period from the ascension of Christ till his visible return of which there are clear signs so that we can and ought to watch and pray.
Two major signs: 1. Great apostasy 2. Rise of Antichrist.
|Natural catastrophes||National upheavals||Church|
THE sign will be the preaching of the gospel to all peoples and disciples made among them.
The Spirit restrains the rise of antichrist (II Thess. 2:7) who is the beast from the sea, a political head, until the last elect is saved.
Serving him will be the beast from the earth, the false prophet leader of the ecclesiastical world.
In the false church, unrighteousness leads to false doctrine that then leads to further immorality.
We must be fearless.