Tuesday, June 26, 2012

The Message of Christ

So, I started the goal of reading through my church history book again, written by Earle Cairns.  It's a good thorough book.  I don't doubt that Cairns was a true believer. 

However, I noticed this first when he thought he should bring up Mithra and Attis in his first chapter about the world surrounding the birth of Christ.  I noticed that he has some liberal influence.

"Although the Cross was the primary mission of Christ on earth, it was not His main message, nor was it considered as an end in itself.  Any careful study of the Gospels will reveal that the kingdom was the primary message of the teaching of Christ."

I guess now that I've typed those two sentences I don't disagree with it.  Because of the church, we can have a Kingdom of God.  However, Christ's message was not only God's sovereignty but the kingdom's king, Christ himself. 

I don't know if kingdom met the same thing in 1954 that it means now.  The Emergent Church loves to throw around "kingdom" like they know what they are talking about.  They are extreme post-millennarians who think the only heaven is people being nice to each other and creating a Utopia.  Even with Christ in the picture, it connotes to me more of a social gospel about what we can do for people rather than the Gospel and what it does for us.

So, the kingdom is our ultimate goal as Christians, and Christ's mission on earth was the Cross to get us there, but it should not be our focus while living.  Christ is the focus with our goal to glorify God in thought, word, and deed.   That should spill into our deeds toward people.

That might not have been so liberal.  That was probably more picky.  But then, Cairns has a paragraph about classic post-millennials with a roster of B.B. Warfield, Charles and A.A. Hodges, and none other than Charles Finney.

Excuse me while I run down the street screaming.  It's another guy who does not realize that Charles Finney was a full-blooded Pelagian and probably was post-millennial in the liberal way, not the classic way.  He did not believe Jesus died to save us, only to be our example.  We just have to tap into the right journey to get to heaven.  Warfield, Hodge, and Hodge believed in true salvation.

Then, I think I finally know the difference between post-millennial and amillennial.  Both are post-millennial in that the millennium is our current church history that will culminate with Christ's return.  But classic, conservative post-millennialism believes that the millennium will still be a utopia caused by Christians finally uniting.  I can assure you, the church will never be united visibly again this side of heaven.  It makes no sense to believe this.  Again, it's Kingdom now theology that looks to man and not to God, a by-product of Finney's ministry. 

This is why I take amillennial.  The first 1000 years of Christianity were the millennium and now the church is in a Humpty-Dumpty state that only Christ can put together again when he comes and defeats Satan forever.

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