So, I just read David Chilton’s Paradise Restored: A Biblical Theology of Dominion and I have to tell you I am kicking myself for not reading it earlier. In my Goodreads profile I simply wrote, “An excellent and necessary read,” and I refuse to redact that statement. But here I would like to make a couple more comments.
This book is the antidote, the death knell, the corrective, to the pessimism that permeates Christianity in America. Modern Christians, by and large, assume that the world is Vietnam and God is going to helicopter His people out of here and let the napalm rain. This, however, is not the biblical promise of history. Chilton brings the Scriptures to many modern questions about the rapture, the antichrist, and yadda yadda. Paradise Restored is the bucket of cold water, nay, a truck load of biblical realism.
And, as Christians should expect from the Lordship of Jesus Christ over all things, this truck load of biblical realism is by necessity optimistic. All Christians affirm that Jesus is the King of kings and Lord of Lords, but precious few, it seems, expand these fine titles to anything practical in creation. It is as though we say,”Jesus is King of kings…in my heart.” Chilton puts the hurt on this modern form of sentimentalism. When the Bible says Jesus is King of kings, it really means it. King over Obama, King over Putin, King over Hollande, and so on.
In a word, Chilton argues that because Jesus has all authority in heaven and on earth NOW, there is nothing that can stop the Great Commission from being fulfilled in history. The only thing that slows it down is the faithlessness of the church. So, buck up, believe the promises, and get to work.
I cannot recommend this book enough. And, you can even get it as a free download, here.