A View from Above
by Joseph Murphy
About the book
A View from Above examines various ways in which Revelation has been interpreted. The (1) Partial Preterist believes that many images and prophecies were fulfilled in the events related to Jerusalem’s destruction in A.D. 70, including Jesus’ coming with the clouds of judgment. (2) Full- or Hyper-Preterists go so far as to claim that the destruction of A.D. 70 was the “fulfillment of all that has been written,” so that ALL previously unfulfilled biblical prophecies were brought to fulfillment, including resurrection, rapture, final judgment, and Satan’s consignment to the lake of fire. The (3) Church-Historical view understands that events which have unfolded throughout the church’s history were prefigured or foretold in picturesque fashion. (4) Classic or Historic Premillenialism expects Jesus to return and establish an earthly kingdom of righteousness, peace, and prosperity. (5) Dispensational Premillennialism is probably the most recognized theory in North America; Jesus is expected to secretly remove his people from earth prior to a seven-year period of intense hardship and divine judgment on sin. A personal antichrist will emerge, only to be defeated in a climactic battle at Armageddon. The righteous will be resurrected to enjoy for 1,000 years the fulfillment of all God’s promises to the Jews under the messianic rule of Jesus. After this period, a final onslaught of Satan will be overthrown and the wicked will be resurrected to face the final judgment. (6) Progressive Dispensationalism differs from the traditional version by saying that the church was anticipated in the Old Testament and fulfills in part many of its prophecies. Instead of seeing one salvation plan for Israel and another for the church, this view recognizes only one covenant. While traditional dispensationalists insist on a literal interpretation of Scripture wherever possible, progressives admit that the New Testament itself does not always handle Old Testament prophecies in that way. (7) Postmillennialism understands that with the ascension (enthronement) of Christ and the spread of the gospel, conditions on earth will progressively-though intermittently-improve until this present world is largely Christianized. After this millennial period, Jesus will return to initiate final judgment and the eternal state. (8) Amillennialism holds that Revelation’s 1,000 years picture either the present spiritual exaltation of believers or the present reign of deceased believers with Christ. Earthly conditions will continue to involve suffering and persecution of believers until Jesus returns and the day of resurrection occurs-to be followed immediately by judgment and its eternal results. (9) The Apocalyptic perspective, which may or may not be integrated with one of the foregoing positions, understands Revelation to be an example of an extinct literary style.
A View from Above also examines how the early history of the church impacted the message of Revelation. It addresses theological concepts such as prophecy, God’s kingdom, rapture, antichrist, and the new heaven and earth. Of particular importance are the practical issues to be learned and practiced in daily life.
June 08, 2020