Postmill and infant baptism

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TylerRay

Puritan Board Graduate
Is there any reliable data on this? I'd think if the above statement is true it must be a fairly recent development, as postmillenialism has been the dominant eschatological position in reformed circles at least from the Reformation to the 20th Century (perhaps outside the Netherlands). Iain Murray's excellent book "The Puritan Hope" traces Reformed eschatological thought in the UK from the Reformation through to quite recent times and shows how dominant postmillenialism has been throughout that period.
The Dutch tradition went amillennial at some point, and the Westminster Seminary tradition is pretty uniformly amillennial. These two strands have caused a shift in that direction throughout the Reformed and Presbyterian churches in the US. Scotland hasn't seen as much of it because they don't have as much influence from those traditions. They have a tradition of their own, which is primarily postmillennial.
 

Dachaser

Puritan Board Doctor
So you would see the promises of the Messianic Age as being mainly spiritual, and not physical in nature than?
 

Dachaser

Puritan Board Doctor
The Dutch tradition went amillennial at some point, and the Westminster Seminary tradition is pretty uniformly amillennial. These two strands have caused a shift in that direction throughout the Reformed and Presbyterian churches in the US. Scotland hasn't seen as much of it because they don't have as much influence from those traditions. They have a tradition of their own, which is primarily postmillennial.
Wasn't there at one time also though a preMil position held among some of the most influential Reformed authors from say late 19th/early 20 th century? It seems that view was being tarnished by being associated with Dispensational view of the premil, so was shunned aside?
 

TylerRay

Puritan Board Graduate
Wasn't there at one time also though a preMil position held among some of the most influential Reformed authors from say late 19th/early 20 th century? It seems that view was being tarnished by being associated with Dispensational view of the premil, so was shunned aside?
Yes, that's how I understand it. Although, the premillennial view was always in the minority.
 

Dachaser

Puritan Board Doctor
Yes, that's how I understand it. Although, the premillennial view was always in the minority.
There was an interesting time when the Conservative Reformed and the Fundamentalist Baptists were in agreement on the premil position, before the Dispensational version became the prominent view among the Fundamentalists.
 

TylerRay

Puritan Board Graduate
There was an interesting time when the Conservative Reformed and the Fundamentalist Baptists were in agreement on the premil position, before the Dispensational version became the prominent view among the Fundamentalists.
I'm pretty sure that the dispensational view has always been prominent among fundamentalist Baptists. I'm open to bring corrected on that. Dispensationalism certainly predated Fundamentalism. And, like I said, the Premillennial view was always in the minority among the Reformed.
 

Scottish Presbyterian

Puritan Board Freshman
So you would see the promises of the Messianic Age as being mainly spiritual, and not physical in nature than?
Is the question to me? If so, and you mean the Millennial Age then yes, unquestionably so. I don't see strong evidence for physical benefits as such, other than those which are consequences of spiritual ones (e.g. the virtual extinction of violent crime could be construed as a physical benefit of a time when "they shall not hurt nor destroy in all my holy mountain").

Another example: "The lion shall eat straw like the ox" I think does not mean that literal lions will become herbivorous, but that the unbelievers who before would have devoured God's people, will then be harmless to them, and probably will be listening to God's word preached (eating the ox's diet if you will), though of course we cannot scripturally expect a time when all will be converted, I think they do point to a time when all, or almost all, will be part of the visible church.
 

Dachaser

Puritan Board Doctor
Is the question to me? If so, and you mean the Millennial Age then yes, unquestionably so. I don't see strong evidence for physical benefits as such, other than those which are consequences of spiritual ones (e.g. the virtual extinction of violent crime could be construed as a physical benefit of a time when "they shall not hurt nor destroy in all my holy mountain").

Another example: "The lion shall eat straw like the ox" I think does not mean that literal lions will become herbivorous, but that the unbelievers who before would have devoured God's people, will then be harmless to them, and probably will be listening to God's word preached (eating the ox's diet if you will), though of course we cannot scripturally expect a time when all will be converted, I think they do point to a time when all, or almost all, will be part of the visible church.
What about there being no more wars, famines, people worshiped King Jesus only?
 

Scottish Presbyterian

Puritan Board Freshman
What about there being no more wars, famines, people worshiped King Jesus only?
Yes, again, the first two are secondary to the spiritual blessings and results of them. The third is a spiritual blessing. The promise is that from the rising of the sun to the going down of the same, God's name shall be great among the gentiles, and in every place incense shall be offered to his name, even a pure offering. That the nations shall not learn war any more is a concomitant temporal blessing resulting from this.
 

Dachaser

Puritan Board Doctor
Yes, again, the first two are secondary to the spiritual blessings and results of them. The third is a spiritual blessing. The promise is that from the rising of the sun to the going down of the same, God's name shall be great among the gentiles, and in every place incense shall be offered to his name, even a pure offering. That the nations shall not learn war any more is a concomitant temporal blessing resulting from this.
There will also be a time of renewal in the earth itself, as creation curse will be undone, and paradise restored as it was before the fall, and do not us in that state now.
 

BayouHuguenot

Puritanboard Amanuensis
There will also be a time of renewal in the earth itself, as creation curse will be undone, and paradise restored as it was before the fall, and do not us in that state now.
Are you stating your own position or rebutting another position?
 

Dachaser

Puritan Board Doctor
Are you stating your own position or rebutting another position?
Not rebutting another position, but trying to see where and how they explain things such as Isaiah 2:4?
I would just like to see how one understands things such as the Great Rock coming to earth toi shatter all Kingdoms as being anything other than the Second Coming event?
 
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Scottish Presbyterian

Puritan Board Freshman
There will also be a time of renewal in the earth itself, as creation curse will be undone, and paradise restored as it was before the fall, and do not us in that state now.
I'm not sure I fully understand what you're getting at here (I'm not wanting to be rude but your post is a little difficult to decipher). To say the creation curse will be undone begs two questions: which creation curse? And when?

For the redeemed, all curses of creation will be undone in Heaven. I don't see any warrant in scripture for believing any of them will be lifted before then. Women will still bear children in sorrow, men will still have toil in labour, the ground will still bring forth thistles. At least I believe so, I don't see a reason to think anything different. Also, paradise will not be restored as before the fall. Men will still be sinners, the fall will still be a fact, the world will still contain wheat and tares - as far as I am aware the scripture suggests nothing different. As above, the blessings of the millennium are spiritual blessings.

And I don't believe any of the things you describe are "in that state now". Also the spiritual blessings of the millennium as promised in scripture are clearly not yet poured out.

Not rebutting another position, but trying to see where and how they explain things such as Isaiah 2:4?
I'm not sure how Isaiah 2:4 relates to any of the above, but as stated before, yes I believe that war will cease during the millennium, and one passage to support this is Isaiah 2:4.
 

Scottish Presbyterian

Puritan Board Freshman
I’m new to Westminster Federalism, but is postmillenialism related to the idea that the elect are usually and providentially born into believing families?
In other words, does the fact that covenant children and the promises to them tie into the idea of postmillenial eschatology?
I realise that in my explanation of the classic post-millennial position I have neglected to answer the OP. I don't see any connection between the two - I think the fact that the elect are usually and providentially born into believing families is an ongoing fact of history. If we expect this to bring about the millennium then I think believing families will need to increase their procreation rate pretty dramatically - and even then of course have no guarantee that their children will be elect.

The millennium will be brought about by an outpouring of the Holy Spirit throughout the world, blessing the preaching of the gospel to such an extent that a sufficiently large proportion of the world's population will be converted to make the general tone of every nation and society overtly Christian (though not every individual will be converted). This is a scriptural view, and can be believed by anti-paedobaptists who deny the inclusion of children in the visible church as consistently as by paedobaptists who confess is. Conversely, it can be denied by paedobaptists as consistently as by anti-paedobaptists.

Hope this helps answer the question.
 

Dachaser

Puritan Board Doctor
I'm not sure I fully understand what you're getting at here (I'm not wanting to be rude but your post is a little difficult to decipher). To say the creation curse will be undone begs two questions: which creation curse? And when?

For the redeemed, all curses of creation will be undone in Heaven. I don't see any warrant in scripture for believing any of them will be lifted before then. Women will still bear children in sorrow, men will still have toil in labour, the ground will still bring forth thistles. At least I believe so, I don't see a reason to think anything different. Also, paradise will not be restored as before the fall. Men will still be sinners, the fall will still be a fact, the world will still contain wheat and tares - as far as I am aware the scripture suggests nothing different. As above, the blessings of the millennium are spiritual blessings.

And I don't believe any of the things you describe are "in that state now". Also the spiritual blessings of the millennium as promised in scripture are clearly not yet poured out.



I'm not sure how Isaiah 2:4 relates to any of the above, but as stated before, yes I believe that war will cease during the millennium, and one passage to support this is Isaiah 2:4.
Romans 8:21, as i understand that passage, Paul is describing what happens at Second Coming of Jesus to earth.
 

Scottish Presbyterian

Puritan Board Freshman
Romans 8:21, as i understand that passage, Paul is describing what happens at Second Coming of Jesus to earth.
May be, but as I'm sure you are aware, postmillennialism is the view that Jesus' Second Coming occurs after the millennium, at the end of the world. Thus, after Jesus' Second Coming we would be in the eternal state (i.e. Heaven for believers), so this doesn't relate to the millennium. The belief that the millennium happens after the Second Coming is called premillennialism.

Edit: I also note you refer to the "Second Coming of Jesus to earth". It seems unlikely that the Saviour would veil His glory for a second time in coming to the earth, and I certainly don't think the bible teaches that He will. It does teach in more than one place that he will come in the clouds of Heaven.
 

Dachaser

Puritan Board Doctor
May be, but as I'm sure you are aware, postmillennialism is the view that Jesus' Second Coming occurs after the millennium, at the end of the world. Thus, after Jesus' Second Coming we would be in the eternal state (i.e. Heaven for believers), so this doesn't relate to the millennium. The belief that the millennium happens after the Second Coming is called premillennialism.

Edit: I also note you refer to the "Second Coming of Jesus to earth". It seems unlikely that the Saviour would veil His glory for a second time in coming to the earth, and I certainly don't think the bible teaches that He will. It does teach in more than one place that he will come in the clouds of Heaven.
Does Postmil hold to an Imminent return than of Jesus?
 

Scottish Presbyterian

Puritan Board Freshman
Does Postmil hold to an Imminent return than of Jesus?
No. It holds there is a time of worldwide blessing to intervene between now and the second coming.

I'm very sorry as I appear to have misunderstood you above, and now understand that you perhaps aren't familiar with the postmillennial view. I will try to write up a short but full explanation of my position at some point and send it to you (don't expect this very soon as I'm afraid I'm extremely busy at the moment, but I will try to give it to you as soon as I can). As I said before, I am not very well read on all the varying positions held by men in history, but I think my own view resembles very closely the classic postmillennial position held by the majority of the Reformers and Puritans.
 

BayouHuguenot

Puritanboard Amanuensis
Edit: I also note you refer to the "Second Coming of Jesus to earth". It seems unlikely that the Saviour would veil His glory for a second time in coming to the earth, and I certainly don't think the bible teaches that He will. It does teach in more than one place that he will come in the clouds of Heaven.
Zech 14 says his coming he will stand on the Mt of Olives and that will trigger an earthquake and that will cause a valley to appear, allowing the Jews to escape.

He doesn't have to veil his glory in a premillennial scheme. Since we hold to a Reformed Christology, his humanity will be local, anyway.
 

Scottish Presbyterian

Puritan Board Freshman
Zech 14 says his coming he will stand on the Mt of Olives and that will trigger an earthquake and that will cause a valley to appear, allowing the Jews to escape.

He doesn't have to veil his glory in a premillennial scheme. Since we hold to a Reformed Christology, his humanity will be local, anyway.
Yes, Zechariah 14 is the scripture which I think comes closest to supporting a premillennial view, though only if interpreted literally. Can you think of any other passage in scripture which supports a literal reading of Zechariah 14?

Point taken about Christ's humanity being local (to Him) anyway - but I'm not sure I understand a scenario in which Christ walks the earth as an earthly king, without veiling his glory. Also, He did say "My kingdom is not of this world".
 

BayouHuguenot

Puritanboard Amanuensis
Can you think of any other passage in scripture which supports a literal reading of Zechariah 14?
I don't see why I would need to. I'm not entirely convinced of the premil scheme, but that wouldn't be the reason.
but I'm not sure I understand a scenario in which Christ walks the earth as an earthly king, without veiling his glory.
What would "unveiled glory" look like and why is that incompatible with a renewed earth?
Also, He did say "My kingdom is not of this world".
I'm not sure what that has to do with it. In any case, he comes from heaven, so there's that.
 

Dachaser

Puritan Board Doctor
No. It holds there is a time of worldwide blessing to intervene between now and the second coming.

I'm very sorry as I appear to have misunderstood you above, and now understand that you perhaps aren't familiar with the postmillennial view. I will try to write up a short but full explanation of my position at some point and send it to you (don't expect this very soon as I'm afraid I'm extremely busy at the moment, but I will try to give it to you as soon as I can). As I said before, I am not very well read on all the varying positions held by men in history, but I think my own view resembles very closely the classic postmillennial position held by the majority of the Reformers and Puritans.
Looking forward to that being sent over to me, as have found that there seems to be Postmil position held among the non American Reformed, as A Mil seems to be the dominant view held here in the States.
 

Dachaser

Puritan Board Doctor
Zech 14 says his coming he will stand on the Mt of Olives and that will trigger an earthquake and that will cause a valley to appear, allowing the Jews to escape.

He doesn't have to veil his glory in a premillennial scheme. Since we hold to a Reformed Christology, his humanity will be local, anyway.
That passage is one of the main support for my premil position, as the Second Coming of Jesus seems to be a literal/physical one upon the earth.
 

Dachaser

Puritan Board Doctor
Yes, Zechariah 14 is the scripture which I think comes closest to supporting a premillennial view, though only if interpreted literally. Can you think of any other passage in scripture which supports a literal reading of Zechariah 14?

Point taken about Christ's humanity being local (to Him) anyway - but I'm not sure I understand a scenario in which Christ walks the earth as an earthly king, without veiling his glory. Also, He did say "My kingdom is not of this world".
I think that Jesus reference was to tat the time of His First Coming the Kingdom was to be spiritual , but that at His Second Coming, the spiritual with break into the physical realm .
 
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