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The Remarkable Consistency Of Proponents Of Premillennialism

Jesse Johnson who blogs at The Cripplegate, performs an interesting experiment by listening to sermons on Revelation 6 from twelve different pastors, six premillennial and six amillennial.

What he found was almost complete consistency between premillennials and virtually no consistency between amillennials.  From his article:

I started this month with an experiment: listen to 12 sermons from Revelation 6, from 12 well-known pastors; half amillennialists, and half premillennialists. I ended this month with a new (to me) argument for premillennialism. Let me explain:

Revelation is obviously the book of the New Testament where one’s millennial view substantially affects the interpretation of the book as a whole. Premillennialists and amillennialists disagree over chapters like 1 Corinthians 15, Acts 1, and Romans 11. But overall, millennial views allow for substantial agreement on things like 1 Corinthians 1-14, Acts 2-27, and Romans 1-10/12-16.

But when it comes to Revelation, all bets are off...

And then comes Revelation 6. Revelation 6 is the description of the first six of the seven seals of God’s judgement. The first four seals are represented by the four horseman—a passage so familiar that “the four horseman of the apocalypse” has become idiomatic. For non-Christians, this just might be the most well-known passage in Revelation.

With that in mind, in preparation to preach Revelation 6 I listened to a dozen sermons from well-known preachers on this passage. While I normally don’t listen to sermons on a passage I’m about to preach, the change in between Revelation 5 and 6 is so stark that I wanted to see what other pastors did with it–the kind of pastors whose conferences I go to and whose books I buy.

What I found surprised me.

First, a side note: there is nothing in this chapter that is expressly millennial. In Revelation 7, there is a pause between the sixth and seventh seals, and 144,000 Israelites are sealed. But in the confines of Revelation 6, there is nothing about Israel, the kingdom, or the return of Christ.

Nevertheless, unlike Revelation 1-5, those who hold to premillennialism preached Revelation 6 very differently than amillennialists.

But what surprised me the most was not that gulf. Rather, it was the remarkable consistency between premillennialists on this passage, in contrast with the utter inconsistency among amillennialists.

Read the rest here.


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1 comment :

  1. I really enjoyed his article. I hadn't thought about it exactly that way before, but it makes so much sense it floored me. I think he's articulated an obvious but profound truth:

    There is only ONE way to rightly divide Scripture--there are COUNTLESS wrong ways.

    Now that I think about it, I've noticed a similar phenomenon with many post-tribbers I have interacted with. Their problem is they have to get creative when it comes to little details like repopulating the Millennial Kingdom, when and how the judgment seat of Christ and the marriage supper of the Lamb go down, the identity of the 24 elders, and do on and so forth. And create they do. They invariably have all kinds of fascinating answers that exceed the spectrum of plausibility, and sadly, generally create more problems than they solve.

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