The study of End Times, or eschatology, is an area of doctrine where there is a great deal of contention among evangelicals.[i] Conflicting views about how the Millennium will playout, the Rapture, and how the return of Christ occurs creates such strong disagreement that some Christians are afraid to discuss this aspect of theology.[ii] While at the same time an unhealthy fascination with the return of Christ causes others to look at every newspaper headline as a sign of Christ returning tomorrow or next week.[iii] The popularity of books and movies discussing the return of Christ only seem to amplify these tensions. Likewise, failed predictions about the return of Christ leave many confused.[iv]

Books such as Hal Lindsey’s The Late Great Planet Earth, Tim LaHaye and Jerry B. Jenkins’ The Left Behind series, and the numerous films that followed and proceed them give powerful testimony to the return of Christ. But there are many critics of these books and movies.[v] Conflict specific to eschatology is nothing new.[vi] Wayne Grudem notes, “There have been many debates—often heated ones—in the history of the church over questions regarding the future.”[vii] Theological debate is healthy though, and dedication to understanding prophecy about the return of Christ is beneficial to the Church.[viii] Often, however, those with differing opinions on End Times, or eschatology, often fail to acknowledge the places where unity exists.[ix]

  Acknowledging contention among Evangelicals on the specifics of the return of Christ, Grudem directs Christians to have grace on this matter.[x] While eschatology is fundamental to Christian Theology, it is not a first-level doctrinal matter.[xi] Millard Erickson, commenting on the importance of eschatology points out that “There is…a wide range of views of the status of eschatology.”[xii] While viewed as an important doctrine, there is no specific agreement about how important an eschatological schema is to Christian Theology in general. Affirming that Christ will return is a first-level doctrine, but how that will play out is not as foundational.[xiii]

Convincing other Christians that one’s specific schema of eschatology is correct is a popular undertaking. Yet, the end of the world or how history will run out, should not be viewed as just an in-house debate (Acts 17:30-31). Scripture records, “[God] has put eternity into man’s heart” (Ecclesiastes 3:11).[xiv] Therefore, every person, at some level wonders about the end of time. Even renown atheist-philosopher Bertrand Russell speculated about the end of the world.[xv] Why then do Evangelicals overlook this “point of contact”?[xvi]

It is the belief of this author that Evangelicals commit a great disservice in failing to connect eschatology with defending the faith. Further, failing to encourage a robust understanding of eschatological schemas or view of End Times and the Millennium, has served as a disservice to apologetics and evangelism. End Times, or eschatology, proves to be an issue where Christians can engage cultural, societal, and deep human questions. By surveying and defining eschatology and apologetics before exploring relevant passages of Scripture that speak to End Times, I will provide an answer to both why and how eschatology is important to apologetics.

Eschatology Defined

The term eschatology might sound odd to some and might be unfamiliar to others. “Eschatology is the study of the last things.”[xvii] As a whole, the doctrine explains how God’s inerrant word speaks about the return of Christ and the final judgement. When individuals express their view of “the Rapture” or “the Millennium”, they are describing their view of eschatology. Two key terms that are foundational to the discussion of eschatology are “Rapture” and “Millennium.”[xviii]

In defining the term “Rapture”, Ryrie writes:

“The English word comes from a Latin word, rapio, which means to seize or snatch in relation to ecstasy of spirit or the actual removal from one place to another…it means to be carried away in spirit or body. Thus the rapture of the church means the removal of the church from earth to heaven.”[xix]

Many are familiar with the term rapture, and every eschatological scheme affirms the concept of the Rapture at some level.[xx] The major disagreements among proponents of each view of End Times are how and when the Rapture will occur. The truth of the Rapture is the biblical and universal position among the Church and rooted in 1 Thessalonians 4:17, Then we who are alive, who are left, will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we will always be with the Lord.”

Just as important to eschatological definitions is the term Millennium. The interpretation of this term is a place of disagreement among eschatological schemas. Differences about how “the last things” play out are not necessarily tied to a denomination or a single confession of faith, however. James Spivey notes, “The Millennium causes more debate among Southern Baptists than particularly any other Christian doctrine.”[xxi] It is difficult then to provide a single agreed upon definition for the term millennium. A person’s understanding of the definition of the Millennium is based on one’s eschatological system. Therefore, it is only fair for one to survey the three major views of the Millennium when seeking to understand the term.

According to The Schaff-Herzog Encyclopedia of Religious Knowledge, the Millennium is, “An indefinitely long period before the end of the world…the main thing is the conception of a glorious period of peace and joy in which the elect shall dwell under the immediate personal rulership of Christ, on earth, after his return.”[xxii] Louis Berkhof, in expressing the three primary views of the Millennium, explains:

“There are some who connect with the advent of Christ the idea of the millennium, either immediately before or immediately following the second coming…Some of those who expect a millennium in the future hold that the Lord will return before the millennium [Premillennialist]…others believe that his second coming will follow after the Millennium [Postmillennialist] …There are large numbers, however, who do not believe the Bible warrants the expectation of the millennium [Amillennialist].”[xxiii]

The three views of the Millennium simply stated are that the Millennium is the current reign of Christ now (Postmillennialist), the Millennium is the further reign of Christ following His return (Premillennialist), or that the Bible does not communicate a millennial reign of Christ in a literal sense (Amillennialist).

Christians should understand that there are strengths within each of the systems. There are respected theologians holding to a variety of eschatological schemas and views of the Millennium and Rapture.[xxiv] Few theologians believe that holding to a particular eschatological system is going to be something that keeps one out of the Kingdom.[xxv]  Holding to different systems of eschatology should push Christians deeper into a desire to know God and His Word. Further, eschatology should motivate Christians to not only remember that Christ will return, but it should drive them to proclaim the gospel. It is in the proclamation of the gospel that a Christian, motivated by the reality that Christ will return, will be required to defend the gospel, and engage in Apologetics.

Apologetics Defined

The concept of Apologetics is a biblical defense of the Christian faith.[xxvi] At the heart of the study and practice of Apologetics is the desire to “…in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect, having a good conscience, so that, when you are slandered, those who revile your good behavior in Christ may be put to shame” (1 Peter 3:15-16).

An apologist’s goal is “to persuade people to commit their lives and eternal futures into the trust of the Son of God who died for them.”[xxvii] Apologists have a calling to prioritize the message of the gospel. Further, successful apologetics hinges on the use of effective communication and making the most of every opportunity to present Christ.[xxviii]

One of the primary tasks of an apologist is to appeal to those who are lost and persuade them concerning the truth of the gospel.[xxix] In other words, Christian Apologetics centers on rebutting, refuting, and “destroying arguments” (2 Corinthians 10:5) against the Christian faith. As Rob Phillips argues, “[Apologetics] is a reasonable defense of Christianity.”[xxx] Further, Christian Apologetics seeks to build up believers, defend the Christian Worldview, challenge disbelief, and persuade non-believers as a means of evangelism.[xxxi] It is most directly the evangelistic element of Apologetics where eschatology and defending the faith connect at the deepest level.

Connecting Apologetics and Eschatology

Scripture is the ultimate authority for any truly Christian eschatology.[xxxii] Christians start with God’s Word when seeking to understand the redemptive, cosmological, and the historical impact of the return of Christ. Starting from that foundation, any Christian can contend with certainty about the end of the world when engaging unbelievers “who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth” (Romans 1:18). Because Christians know that Christ will return, they desire to engage the lost world with the truth of the Gospel. While all eschatological systems have differences, they have foundational agreement on the reality that Christ will return, and those without Christ will face judgment. Further, whatever view of End Times one takes, all Christians have a unique point of contact with the lost. Why then are defending the faith and eschatology two areas of doctrine that connect a believer with the lost world? Scripture provides an answer to that question addressing questions central to a biblical worldview and deep concerns written on the hearts of humanity.

People are Fascinated by the End of the World

Matthew 24:3-5 warns, “As he sat on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to him privately, saying, “Tell us, when will these things be, and what will be the sign of your coming and of the end of the age?” And Jesus answered them, “See that no one leads you astray. For many will come in my name, saying, ‘I am the Christ,’ and they will lead many astray.”” 

One of the significant markers of a cult leader is for them to predict the end of the world.[xxxiii] Frequently, those who have a nominal understanding of the Christian faith will become worried or even fascinated with these predictions. For example, in 2012, when the Mayan calendar predicted the end of the world because the calendar itself ended, many people were questioning, “What does the end of the world mean?”[xxxiv] Those who defend the faith have ripe opportunities to point to the reality that the world will end. However, Christians know that it will end with the return of Christ. Whatever eschatological system one holds to, there is a great deal of agreement upon the reality that Christians are sure Christ will return suddenly, personally, visibly, and bodily.[xxxv]

Those who seek to defend the faith, regardless of their eschatological system, should be prepared not to point to their system but to point to God’s Word and the consistent truths that it demonstrates regarding the reality that Christ will return. Further, a Christian apologist who is seeking to glorify the Lord by defending the faith can likewise point a nominal Christian to the reality that believers should long for the return of Christ.[xxxvi] But further, Christians can point people to the truth that they do not know when Christ will return.[xxxvii] Not only will this provide peace to a worried person, but when a cult leader’s prediction ends up proving false, it will remind confused people about the true nature of the words of Christ. “But concerning that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but the Father only” (Matthew 24:36).

A Christian, who is grounded in the certainty that God has spoken on the future with clarity that Christ will return to judge the world, can point non-believers to the steadfast nature of God’s Word. Further, a Christian who is not afraid of confronting false prophecies and false teaching can assure those confused by the teachings of false prophets. 

People Seek to Understand the Signs of the Times

Matthew 16:4 explains, “An evil and adulterous generation seeks for a sign.” While the specific context of Matthew 16 applies to the Pharisees and Sadducees, who were seeking to test Jesus for a sign, this is not the only passage in Scripture that demonstrates people looking for some sign from Heaven. Whether people are looking for some validation for a text of Scripture, looking at the words of Nostradamus, read The Bible Code,[xxxviii] or a book by Hal Lindsey,[xxxix] many spend time fixated on the apocalypse.[xl]

One of the beauties of the words of Christ is that He predicts quite clearly that there will be “wars and rumors of wars” (Matthew 24:6). These words in and of themselves should remind believers of God’s sovereignty over His creation. Christ knows the history of the future, and nothing surprises Him. Those who do not know Christ are often troubled and anxious when world events are unnerving. The Christian who has confidence in Christ and His return, whatever the eschatological system, can provide assurance that we do not have to be troubled (John 14:1; Philippians 4:6).

Christians are not called to be “Newspaper Prophets” scanning world events consumed with the next sign of the end. Instead, and regardless of one’s eschatology, when times are troubling, Christians have hope in God’s promise to slay death (Revelation 20:14). The Apologist will always remind those who are consumed with worry that “the gates of hell shall not prevail against [the Church]” (Matthew 16:18).

Eschatology is Unique Among Christian Doctrine

In Matthew 24:36, Jesus explains, “But concerning that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but the Father only.” Eschatology is unique in that the truth of Christ’s physical return is a primary doctrine.[xli] However, how that system works itself out is where there is disagreement. This presents an incredible reality that while Christians have clarity on foundational truths, it is all right if they have some disagreement in how some of the prophecies of Scripture are fulfilled.[xlii] 

A well-trained apologist has this as a point where he can demonstrate to non-believers that the foundational truths are the same. However, there is charitable disagreement among faithful believers regarding secondary and tertiary matters. Why is this useful?

Eschatology Demonstrates Conviction That the Secret Things Belong to the Lord

Deuteronomy 29:29 clearly states, “The secret things belong to the LORD our God, but the things that are revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may do all the words of this law.” Eschatology reminds Christians that they do not know everything. “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts” (Isaiah 55:8-9).

A Christian’s ability to comprehend God’s thoughts are limited by his fallenness and his covenant relationship with the creator as God’s creatures. A person’s mind can only contain finite knowledge. There are things that Christians cannot understand. That is one of the beauties of the God of Scripture. God’s thoughts cannot be fully contained in the mind of humanity. The Lord’s knowledge is more excellent than a person’s comprehension.

This points to a unique aspect of the triune God of Scripture. While the Lord has revealed Himself to humanity, full knowledge of Him is beyond humanity. Eschatology should humble Christians because God is greater than His creation. His thoughts are too large for people to be able to contain. Again, this humility should smack of difference when it comes to people in the world.

Eschatology Reminds Christians that Despite Different Understandings of Scripture, God Has Spoken Clearly

Take into consideration the verses listed below:

  • Psalm 19:7, “The law of the Lord is perfect, reviving the soul; the testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple.”
  • 2 Corinthians 1:13-14,For we are not writing to you anything other than what you read and understand and I hope you will fully understand—just as you did partially understand us…”
  • Matthew 12:3, “Have you not read . . .”
  • Matthew 21:42, “Have you never read in the Scriptures. . .”

Wayne Grudem defines the clarity of Scripture as follows: “The Bible is written in such a way that its teachings are able to be understood by all who will read it seeking God’s help and being willing to follow it.”[xliii] 

Further, while there is disagreement on how the return of Christ will take place, it is historically unchanging in the history of the Church that Christ will return. This allows an unbeliever to know that Christians have never disagreed on this. The return of Christ is foundational to all of Christianity.

The Reality of Christ’s Return Should Drive One’s Desire to Proclaim the Gospel

Matthew 26:31-34 and 41 says, “When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit on his glorious throne. Before him will be gathered all the nations, and he will separate people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. And he will place the sheep on his right, but the goats on the left. Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world…Then he will say to those on his left, ‘Depart from me, you cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels.”

Christians believe that Christ will return and that those who do not have Christ as their Lord will be condemned to Hell for all eternity. Unfortunately, the lack of a consistent emphasis on the truth—that Christ is coming back for His Church—has prevented the Church from driving forward with the gospel. People need to remember that Christ will return, and they should respond to it. This urgency that the judgment is coming should drive the Church. Regardless of the eschatological system, all believe that the return of Christ is imminent. The specific way that the immediacy of Christ’s return will come is one of the differences, yet no matter the system, the urgency for the lost should motivate Christians to proclaim the gospel.

Believers can remember that we do not know the hour or the day. Those who are without Christ face judgment without a Savior. While the ultimate judgment could be hundreds of years from now, Christians are reminded that we do not know when an individual’s life could end, and those without Christ are without hope. Whether Christ returns tomorrow or hundreds of years from now, the lost are doomed and need the righteousness of Christ to atone for their sins.

The Study of Eschatology Demonstrates a Conviction Regarding the Authority of God’s Word

With regards to the authority of Scripture, 2 Timothy 3:16-17 gives us an excellent explanation: “All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.”

God’s Word is the ultimate standard for the Christian. There is no higher authority than the Word of God. Christians are told repeatedly to proclaim the gospel among the nations. Christians are likewise told that salvation is found in no other name than that of Jesus Christ. When one upholds Scripture as the ultimate standard concerning all things, he recognizes that Christ will return. Knowing about the return of Christ and attempting to understand how that takes place demonstrates submission to the authority of God’s Word.

Taking Christ at His word, that He will return, is demonstrated in knowing as much as one can know regarding the prophecies of how that will occur. Nevertheless, knowing one’s eschatology demonstrates that one takes the impact and ramifications of the return of Christ seriously. A Christian can spend his entire life attempting to determine how Christ will return, and he might even get it wrong, but his time was not wasted. The believer sought the Lord, and the Lord, who always fulfills His promises (2 Corinthians 1:20; Hebrews 10:23), will bless the believer.

Pointing a lost person to the ultimate authority will always prove useful. There will be blessings in this life and the next for the individual who takes God seriously enough to pick up His Word and attempt to understand what it means for Christ to return. Again, due to the fallen nature of humanity, a Christian might get some of this wrong. Even if one has the wrong eschatological system but can proclaim the gospel clearly, those who come to know Christ from the testimony of a believer, regardless of the eschatological system, will be saved. Demonstrating how Scripture is the ultimate authority in one’s life and living that out when one takes the study of eschatology seriously is the biblical calling.

Final Thoughts

Not only is there great confusion in the world regarding ultimate authorities, but there is much anxiety in the hearts of humanity when it comes to world events and the end of history. Eschatology points to the ultimate authority of God’s Word; it also calms fears and uncertainties about the end of history. Christians should remember that there is no hope in the naturalistic position—that humanity is simply a bag of fizzing chemicals that will one day fizz-out. Naturalistic materialism teaches that there is “an inescapable heat death” of the universe that awaits everything.[xliv] According to the second law of thermodynamics, all matter loses energy until nothingness is all that exist. This concept is referred to as entropy.

“Entropy must forever increase: it cannot stand until it has increased so far that it can increase no further.”[xlv] According to the naturalistic and materialist worldview, “When the fires of the suns of the universe have been extinguished, and no more heat energy flows into the “cosmic heat sink” of space, the randomness of bouncing molecules will then overwhelm every sense of directionality in the universe. Time will end, for time is directional. This is a legendary future condition called the heat death of the universe.”[xlvi] 

In this position, there is no hope, no judge, and no final judgement. Yet, naturalistic materialism is the prevailing worldview of our culture. Scientists themselves shudder at the ramifications of this system. Why? It is untenable, impractical, and rejected by humanity (Ecclesiastes 3:11).[xlvii] So, this leaves humanity asking the question, “What will the end be like?” The hopeless answer that modern science provides regarding the end of history presents an opportunity for believers to speak “truth into unbelief.”[xlviii]

The Lord has endued humanity with an innate longing for something beyond time. The pessimistic promise of the Naturalistic worldview regarding eternity is insufficient in the hearts and souls of humanity. The Lord has spoken though on the true end of time, and Christians have access to this Revelation. No matter one’s eschatological system, Christians have certainty on foundational truth about the end of history. Even though there are disagreements among mature believers, Christians have a point of contact with the lost when it comes to speaking about how history will truly end. The lost need to hear the hope of the Lord’s return, as this hope is diametrically opposed to the pessimism of the naturalistic position.

It is not helpful if Christians avoid discussing eschatology and fall victim to “eschatophobia”, the fear of speaking about End Times.[xlix] If Christians believe that Christ will return, they must proclaim this truth. There is a lost world, where many are fearful of the concepts and questions about how this world will end. Christians have certainty in the fact that Christ will return. He will “judge the living and the dead” (1 Peter 4:5). So, no matter one’s eschatological schema, Christians must preach Christ crucified. A questioning world needs to hear the hope of the gospel and what the Lord has revealed about the end of history. Whatever the system of eschatology one believes, the foundational truth that Christ will return presents a chance for a believer to “make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you” (1 Peter 3:15).

References:

[i] Wayne Grudem, Systematic Theology: An Introduction to Biblical Doctrine (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2003), p. 1091. 

[ii] Millard Erickson, Christian Theology 3rd e.d. (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker, 2013), p. 1058. “”Eschatophobia”—a fear of or aversion to eschatology, or at least an avoidance of discussing it.”

[iii]Ibid, p. 1058, points out the trend of “eschatomania” or an infatuation with the study of eschatology.

[iv] Edgar C. Whisenant, 88 REASONS Why The Rapture Will Be In 1988 The Feast of Trumpets (Rosh-Hash-Ana), (Nashville, TN: World Bible Society, 1988).

[v] Gary DeMar, End Times Fiction: A Biblical Consideration Of The Left Behind Theology (Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson, 2001).

[vi] Kenneth L. Gentry Jr. “Postmillennialism” in Three Views on the Millennium and Beyond, ed. Darrell L. Bock (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 1998) p.13.

[vii] Wayne Grudem, Systematic Theology: An Introduction to Biblical Doctrine (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2003), p. 1091. 

[viii] Darrell L. Bock “Summary Essay” in Three Views on the Millennium and Beyond, ed. Darrell L. Bock (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 1998) p. 279.

[ix] Darrell L. Bock “Summary Essay” in Three Views on the Millennium and Beyond, ed. Darrell L. Bock (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 1998) p. 308.

[x] Wayne Grudem, Systematic Theology: An Introduction to Biblical Doctrine (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2003), p. 1105.

[xi] John M. Frame, Systematic Theology: An Introduction to Christian Belief, (Phillipsburg, NJ: P & R Publishing, 2013), p. 1094.

[xii] Millard Erickson, Christian Theology 3rd e.d. (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker, 2013), p. 1056.

[xiii] Ibid, Christian Theology 3rd e.d. (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker, 2013), pp. 1056-58.

[xiv] All Scripture taken from the English Standard Bible unless otherwise noted, (Crossway, Copyright © 2016).

[xv] Gary North, Is the World Running Down: Crisis in the Christian Worldview (Tyler, TX: Institute for Christian Economics, 1988), p. 54.

[xvi] Greg L. Bahnsen, Presuppositional Apologetics: Stated and Defended, ed. Joel McDurmon (Powder Springs, GA: The American Vision, 2011), p. 19.

[xvii] Darrell L. Bock “Editor’s Preface” in Three Views on the Millennium and Beyond, ed. Darrell L. Bock (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 1998), p. 7.

[xviii] Charles C. Ryrie, What You Should Know About The Rapture (Chicago, IL: The Moody Bible Institute, 1981), p. 10.

[xix] Charles C. Ryrie, What You Should Know About The Rapture (Chicago, IL: The Moody Bible Institute, 1981), p. 27.

[xx] Gary North, Is the World Running Down: Crisis in the Christian Worldview (Tyler, TX: Institute for Christian Economics, 1988), p. 166.

[xxi] James Spivey, “The Millennium” in Has Our Theology Changed? Southern Baptist Thought Since 1845, ed. Paul A. Basden (Nashville, TN: Broadman, 1994), p. 230.

[xxii] Samuel Macauley Jackson, ed., The Schaff-Herzog Encyclopedia of Religious Knowledge Embracing Biblical, Historical, Doctrinal, and Practical Theology and Biblical, Theological, and Ecclesiastical Biography From the Earliest Times to the Present Day vol. VII (New York, NY: Funk & Wagnalls Company, 1908), p. 374.

[xxiii] Louis Berkhof, Systematic Theology Combined Edition, (Grand Rapids, MI: Erdmans, 1996), p. 708.

[xxiv] H. Wayne House, Charts of Christian Theology and Doctrine, (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 1992), pp. 129-36.

[xxv] Wayne Grudem, Systematic Theology: An Introduction to Biblical Doctrine (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2003), pp. 1094-5.

[xxvi] Scott Oliphant, Covenantal Apologetics: Principles and Practice in Defense of Our Faith (Wheaton, IL: Crossway, 2013), p. 29.

[xxvii] Kenneth D. Boa, “What is Apologetics?” in The Apologetics Study Bible, ed. Ted Cabal (Nashville, TN: Holman Bible Publishers, 2007), p. xxv.

[xxviii] Greg L. Bahnsen, Always Ready: Directions for Defending the Faith, ed. Robert Booth (Nacogdoches, TX: Covenant Media Press, 2011), Kindle Location 3671.

[xxix] H. Wayne House & Joseph M. Holden, Charts of Apologetics and Christian Evidences (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2006), p. 14.

[xxx] Rob Phillips, The Apologist’s Tool Kit: Resources to Help Defend the Christian Faith 3rd e.d. (Jefferson City, MO: Missouri Baptist Press, 2016), p. 12.

[xxxi] Ibid, pp. 17-19.

[xxxii] Darrell L. Bock “Summary Essay” in Three Views on the Millennium and Beyond, ed. Darrell L. Bock (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 1998) p. 283.

[xxxiii] Don & Joy Veinot, “False Prophets Prophesying Falsely,” Midwest Christian Outreach, January 21, 2021, accessed November 18, 2022, https://midwestoutreach.org/2021/01/21/false-prophets-prophesying-falsely/.

[xxxiv] Erik Vance, “Neither the Maya Calendar–nor the World–Ends on December 21, 2012,” Scientific American, July 6, 2012. Accessed November 18, 2022, https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/neither-maya-nor-world-calendar-ends-december-21-2012/. 

[xxxv] Wayne Grudem, Systematic Theology: An Introduction to Biblical Doctrine (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2003), p. 1092.

[xxxvi] Wayne Grudem, Systematic Theology: An Introduction to Biblical Doctrine (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2003), p. 1092.

[xxxvii] Ibid, p. 1093.

[xxxviii] Michael Drosnin, The Bible Code (New York, NY: Atria, 1997).

[xxxix] Hal Lindsey & Carole C. Carlson, The Late Great Planet Earth (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 1970).

[xl] Gary North, Rapture Fever: Why Dispensationalism is Paralyzed (Tyler, TX: Institute of Christian Economics, 1993).

[xli] David Van Bebber, “The Importance of Preaching the First-Level Doctrines of the Christian Faith,” in Show Me Why: Thoughts from Missouri Baptists Defending the Christian Faith, e.d. Jeanie Crain (Jefferson City, MO: Missouri Baptist Press, 2018) p. 28.

[xlii] James Spivey, “The Millennium” in Has Our Theology Changed? Southern Baptist Thought Since 1845, ed. Paul A. Basden (Nashville, TN: Broadman, 1994), pp. 230-62.

[xliii] Wayne Grudem, Systematic Theology: An Introduction to Biblical Doctrine (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2003), p. 108.

[xliv] Gary North, Is the World Running Down: Crisis in the Christian Worldview (Tyler, TX: Institute for Christian Economics, 1988), p. 62.

[xlv]Ibid, p. 62.

[xlvi] Ibid, p. 52.

[xlvii] Ibid, pp. 54-61.

[xlviii] Scott Oliphant, Covenantal Apologetics: Principles and Practice in Defense of Our Faith (Wheaton, IL: Crossway, 2013), p. 29.

[xlix] Millard Erickson, Christian Theology 3rd e.d. (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker, 2013), p. 1058.

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