It is not uncommon for Christians to be confused about the end-times. I have studied the Bible and read a few books on the end-times (not the Left Behind series!) and I have to admit, it is still confusing. The other day someone from church asked me whether or not unbelievers would be able to repent during the rapture. After I informed this person that the Reformed church does not believe in the rapture, because the rapture is not found anywhere in Scripture, confusion was then in our discussion.
When our thinking has been informed by popular (most often unbiblical) media such as the Left Behind series, or any of the numerous apocalyptic television shows and films, we become inundated with what we assume to be true about the return of Christ. There are varying opinions on the Second Coming and the events leading up to it. The disputed text is Revelation 20:1-6. To be fair to each view I would have to do some extra reading to present them accurately, but for now I would like to give a taste of the majority Reformed view known as amillennialism. I say that it is the “majority” Reformed view because even within the Reformed tradition there are those who hold to the postmillennial view. I will discuss the various views in later blog posts.
If you are interested in studying these things for yourself I recommend a few resources,
- Three Views on the Millennium is a nice counterpoint book. Each author writes his respective view, then the other authors respond. It is a nice, usually cordial, argument. As I discuss each view I will also attach links to books, articles, and audio.
- For amillennialism I recommend Kim Riddlebarger’s book, A Case for Amillennialism. If you are really interested in end-times discussion I would also encourage you to pre-order Kingdom Come: The Amillennial Alternative.
- For a free booklet on each view you can click here. This is the work of David Murray, and I recommend going to his blog here.
David Murray has also put together a short video that presents the amillennial view.