Posted On February 14, 2016

In Proposition 40, George Peters states:

“The hearers of John believed that he preached to them the Kingdom predicted by the Prophets, and in the sense held by themselves.”

Peters, in this proposition, is hearkening back to early propositions while using the example of John the Baptist as proof of his earlier assertions. The people of Israel had long waited for the coming of the Kingdom predicted by the Prophets, a Kingdom that would have as its sovereign the promised Messiah. As was noted in earlier discussion regarding similar propositions, the expectation was always rooted in the promised Kingdom. While certainly some were mistaken about what exactly the Messiah came to do given many believed he came to root out the disease known as Rome, the expectation of the Kingdom was nevertheless foremost in their minds and they understood what John was declaring and they understood the message was being delivered to the people to whom the Kingdom had long been promised – Israel.

The most notable observation Peters presents in Proposition 40 is the following:

“The Jewish belief in a restored Theocratic-Davidic Kingdom has been noticed (Prop. 20), as supported by the grammatical sense of the prophecies (Prop. 21), as supported by the grammatical sense of the prophecies (Prop. 21), and the election of the nation (Prop. 24), etc. The preaching of John, giving no explanation of the Kingdom, indicative that the Kingdom is something well known (Prop. 19), and the employment of current phraseology without change of meaning (Props. 22 and 23), etc. – all proves the correctness of our position.”

Peters in this observation is noting the consistency of his position and how it is supported by the fact that we have John the Baptist appearing on the scene preaching the coming of the Kingdom. There is no lead up to his declarations or lengthy theological discussion. Nothing more than “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand”. The very context and flow of thought as noted by Peters demands that we realize the message was understood as the same one provided long ago by the Prophets. If it was a different message, it goes without saying that Scripture would have provided some guidance as to the change. Given there is none, we have the message of the Prophets being declared by John and received as such by the people.

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