Michael Boling – Thoughts from the Theocratic Kingdom (Vol. 2): Proposition 123

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In Proposition 123, George Peters states:

“The Pre-Millennial Advent and the accompanying Kingdom are united with the destruction of Anti-Christ.”

In this proposition, Peters is focused on the matter of the timing of the Pre-Millennial Advent and the establishment of its accompanying Kingdom. He notes this Advent and Kingdom are unitd with the destruction of the Anti-Christ. This proposition is rooted in the writings of Paul, Daniel, and John in 2 Thess. 2, Daniel 7, and Revelation 19 respectively. Peters spends the majority of his focus in this Proposition examining the words of Paul in 2 Thess. 2 as they relate to the Second Advent and their relation to the destruction of the Anti-Christ.

The most notable observation Peters presents in Proposition 123 is the following:

(Due to the lengthy nature of the observations made in the Proposition, I have chosen a selection from observation 2)

“Those to whom Paul wrote were looking for the personal Advent of Christ. This appears form several considerations. 1. The Apostle distinctly and repeatedly mentions the personal Coming. Thus in 1 Thess. 1:10; 2:19; 3:13; 4:16; 5:23; 2 Thess. 1:7; 2:1; 3:5. Hence the minds of the Thessalonians were specifically directed to this subject. 2. This very Coming, we are told. 2 Thess. 2:2 – the subject matter of Paul’s discourse – was calculated to shake and trouble them, deeming it past and they are not saved. If a “spiritual” or “providential Coming” was only intended, as some contend, it is singular that Paul does not explain it as such; if it was to “convert” and not “to consume and destroy,” it is astonishing that Paul does not declare the same; and if it was a providential Coming at Jerusalem (as a few assert) in which the Thessalonians were not personally concerned, it is strange that the Apostle does not mention the fact to relieve their minds. The only satisfactory explanation which meets the condition of their trouble is, that they supposed the day of Christ had come, was inaugurated, and hence they expected that a personal Advent had taken place. They believed in such a personal Coming from Paul’s previous teachings. They supposed it at least to be immenent, if it had not already transpired. The Apostle seeing that this supposition agitated their minds, etc., makes the imminency, the nearness of such a visible Coming as they believed in, the subject of his remarks. It would, in the nature of the case, be unreasonable for him to introduce any other Coming than the one under consideration, without a specific mention that they were mistaken in their ideas respecting such a personal Coming; or, if another Coming was to be understood, growing out of the one stated, without pointing out, in some way, the distinction between them. 3. The reference to a personal Coming is established by the phraseology appended, “as that the day of Christ is at hand.” The period when the Messiah is to be personally manifested as the Judge, the King, etc., is often called “His day,” etc., and was so understood both by the Jews and early Christians. This phrase clearly proves that the Apostle was writing to those who not only held to a personal Advent, but united the day of Judgment, the disctinctive day of Christ in which His power and majesty was to be revealed, with that Coming. Paul’s endeavoring to show that such a day of Christ (see how he used the phrase in Acts 17:31; Rom. 2:5; 1 Cor. 3:13; 2 Cor. 1:14; 1 Cor. 5:5; Eph. 4:30; Phil. 1:6, 10), of which he had told them in the First Epis. (1 Thess. 5:2), “the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night” was not so near as they apprehended, that certain great events would intervene, unmistakably corroborates his entire and exclusive reference in this verse to a personal Advent.”

Peters rightly identifies the expectations of the Thessalonians in reference to the Second Advent. Paul wrote to them in part to correct their errant suppositions, specifically the expectation or fear they had somehow missed out on the Second Coming of Christ. What is evident in their belief is the expectation of a physical, personal Coming. Paul did not correct that supposition as it was correctly rooted in truth. What Paul desired to address and correct was their errant understanding of the timing of the Second Advent. In 2 Thess. 2:8, Paul notes that the wicked will be “consumed with the spirit of His mouth” and they shall be destroyed at the “brightness of His coming.” This places the physical, personal Coming of the Messiah (the Second Advent) at a time when the son of perdition, this man of lawlessness, will be destroyed, thus connecting the two events to a time yet in the future.

Again, Peters notes the theologically incorrect position of treating this Second Coming as nothing but a spiritual event. The writings of Paul in 2 Thess. 2 demands a literal, physical coming given the Anti-Christ will be literally and physically destroyed at the “brightness of the coming” of the Messiah. These are important eschatological time markers if you will for which we must take note.

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