Sound Works on Amillennialism
I am a Primitive Baptist minister from Memphis, TN and a longtime subscriber to the Standard Bearer. I appreciated very much your series of articles on “A Defense of (Reformed) Amillennialism.” Can you recommend other works which are sound on this subject? I have some friends who are historic premillennialists, and I am trying to convince them of their error.
In passing, I do not want to sound overly critical, but Andrew Fuller is not one about whom you should be saying very much in a favorable light. If you would read some of the things that he has written, you would realize that you have much more in common with John Gill than you do with Fuller.
Zack M. Guess
Recommended works on the amillennial view of the end include the relevant section in Herman Hoeksema’s Reformed Dogmatics and his commentary on Revelation, Behold, He Cometh! (both are published by the RFPA in Grandville); Anthony Hoekema’s essay in The Meaning of the Millennium, Robert G. Clouse, ed. (InterVarsity, 1977); and Herman Bavinck’s penetrating treatment in the recent book, The Last Things: Hope for This World and the Next, John Bolt, ed. (Baker, 1996).—Ed.
Again, the “All” of I Timothy 2:4
I do see my faults, and I admit that I had erred in my letter to you concerning the “all” of I Timothy 2:4 (Standard Bearer, Sept. 15, 1997, pp. 488, 489). In the light of John 6:37, “All that the Father giveth me shall come to me,” as well as many other supportive verses, it is impossible that I Timothy 2:4 could refer to every human without exception. Rather, it refers “to the divine sovereignty in disposing to salvation” (Schrenk TDNT III:47).
I thank you for setting me straight, although at first I resented that you did so publicly. Perhaps it was best that you did so to rebuke any others who held my view, as well as preventing others to lapse into this error.
“Salvation is of the Lord” and totally undeserved. We are all sinners and without hope except for the gracious sovereign will of God.
May God bless you and give you added strength in upholding the great doctrines of the faith.
Charles B. Gross
It is a joy to receive your letter.
The purpose of my public criticism of the earlier (public) defense of taking “all” in I Timothy 2:4 as “every human without exception” was indeed that others also might learn. Incredibly, these views are rampant among confessedly Reformed people in our oddest of ages. The teaching of universal, ineffectual grace is Calvinist orthodoxy; the doctrine of sovereign, particular grace is “hyper-Calvinist” heresy.
Holding and publicly defending the doctrine that “‘salvation is of the Lord’ and totally undeserved,” with the clear implication that grace is particular and sovereign, you show yourself a friend of the great doctrines of election and predestination.—Ed.