Eschatology Chart

EschatologyChart

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EschatologyChart

Whatis eschatology?

Thebranch of Christian theology that focuses on the study of the finalof things in the bible is known as eschatology. In the context oftheology, the study of final things implies the study of the eventsand prophecies of the end of times (Menn, Yarbrough, &amp Ntagali,2013). Eschatology concerns itself with both the personal and generalissues that relate to the last days. Personal issues include thingssuch as death and the intermediate state before ascension while thegeneral eschatological issues encompass tribulation, resurrection,rapture, the second coming of Christ, the eternal state, and themillennial kingdom. Eschatology is one of the most challenging areasof study in Christian theology. Nevertheless, believers strive todecipher the prophetic passages of the scriptures and connect theirmessage to daily life living so they can prepare themselves for theend times.

Inorder to completely understand the concept of Christian eschatology,it is imperative to first explore the related topics. Rapture is acommon term when it comes to theological studies that deal with endtimes. Although it is based on the bible scriptures, the term itselfis not in the bible. It describes a future end time events that willbe characterized by true believers who are still alive prior to theend times being taken from earth into heaven by God. Tribulationrefers to the seven-year period within which God will complete hisjudgement upon the unbelievers. The Antichrist is a term used torefer to a false teacher who would rise to power during the end oftimes. The Antichrist would be a deceiver who would deny both God andhis son Jesus Christ. The battle of Armageddon would be a clashbetween Jesus and the forces of evil and which will see Christprevail. It is also worth noting that rapture and the second comingof Christ are distinct events. Rapture signifies the return of Jesusfor the church while the second coming is when Christ returns withthe church to defeat the Antichrist.

Thetheology of hope

Thetheology of hope is undoubtedly the most significant perspective inmodern Christian theology. Advanced by Jurgen Moltmann in his 1967book Theologyof Hope, thetheory reintroduces the aspects of Christian hope into theologicaldebates. The doctrine stresses the crucial effect that Christian hopehas over modern life conditions, thoughts and institutions. Thetheology of hope is in the sense that God`s past actions areinsignificant, but his promises for the future are what is important(Moltmann, 2009). Therefore, people should not alienate themselvesfrom this world and expect that it will evolve in itself, but theyshould instead participate actively in the activities that foster thecoming of that better world that they hope for. The theology assertsthat Christ’s resurrection was in itself a promise and thebeginning of what is to come if future. Hence, the study of the endtimes should not be considered as the last chapter of theology, butrather a central perspective of Christian thought from whicheverything else should be given proper meaning.

Avariety of reconstruction perspectives try to go back in time to theglory days of the past instead of focusing on what is to come infuture and have hope that God will deliver an entirely new world. Inresponse to these views, the theology of hope challenges both theofficial optimism and the desperation that accompanies suchreconstruction ideals. One of the fundamental principles of thetheology is that God does not reside above us but goes in front of usand draws us to the future. The theology reflected the desperation ofthe time when it was developed. This was post-war Europe, and thetheology wasn`t quite intended to challenge or replace existingtheological doctrines, but only shows how eschatology can be used toderive theology from hope. Thus, Christian hope should be consideredthe single most important motivating factor in the thought of thechurch as well as the life of each and every Christian. The church isa source of hope that manifests God’s presence through hispromises.

Realizedeschatology

Realizedeschatology is an eschatological view that interprets the NewTestament guided by the fundamental principle that the coming ofGod’s kingdom does not succeed Jesus’ ministry, but, rather, wasalready set into motion and brought to reality (realized) during theministry itself (Sophia, 2016). This eschatological view waspopularized by Hodd and is of the view that eschatology should not beconsidered as an ending to the world, but a beginning since NewTestament scriptures do not reflect the future but the lasting legacyof Jesus’ ministry that is continued by his disciples andfollowers. As a result, subscribers to this view consider the endtimes theories irrelevant because to them, Jesus’ teachings andguidance have greater importance that messianic expectations. Thistheological view appeals to majority of people since it refutes thatthe second coming of Christ would be an apocalyptic event.

References

Menn,J., Yarbrough, R., &amp Ntagali, S. (2013). Biblicaleschatology.Eugene, OR: Resource Publications

Moltmann,J. (2009). Theologyof Hope: On the Grounds and Implications of Christian Eschatology.Translated from German by J. Leitch. Minneapolis: Augsburg Fortress.

Sophia,B. M. (2016). Dislocating the Eschaton? Appraising RealizedEschatology. InternationalJournal of Philosophy and Traditions.doi:10.1007/s11841-016-0534-0

EschatologyChart

Eschatological View

Brief Explanation of View (2-3 Sentences)

Critique – State Your Position on the View (2-3 Sentences)

Biblical Passages to Support Position

Futurist Eschatology

A Christian eschatological view that interprets the books of Daniel and Revelation. The scriptures are interpreted as future events with apocalyptic, global, and literal meanings. The main view is that Christ will rule the world for 1000 years.

The futurist view is unconvincing due to the end time events are not precise. The second coming of Jesus is connected with an event which is the lifespan of a member of his first disciples. However, all those servants are deceased

  • Daniel 9:27 and Revelation 13:4-6. The end times begin when the prince that shall come violates his covenant with the Jews to restore the temple and ends when the Lord appears in glory and destroys him

  • Daniel 7:25 and Revelation 13:5. The period of the end times if there and a half year

Inaugurated

Eschatology

An eschatological theological view that the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus inaugurated the end times. Therefore, some aspects of the kingdom of God have already happened while others are yet to come

The inaugurated eschatology is integral. It plays an essential role in the interpretation of many scriptures.

  • Mark 1:15. The Kingdom of God is at hand

  • 2nd Peter 3:3-5. Scoffers will come in the last days

Realized Eschatology

The coming of the kingdom of God will not happen after the end of Jesus’ ministry. Rather, the kingdom was already realized during the time of his ministry

It is true that some scripture was realized and completed during Jesus’ ministry. However, this view is not comprehensive since there are still scriptures that are yet to be realized

  • John 5:24-25. He who hears his word has everlasting life and will not come to judgment

Demythologization of Eschatology

A process of making the passages of the scriptures acceptable to people in the modern world. Many people do not believe in supernatural occurrences. Hence, there is need for a cultural approach that makes sense to modern people.

Demythologization is important to Christians. It helps reiterates God’s presence and actions in the world. Also, it brings forth that reality can only be attractive to those with faith

  • Mathew 1:18-25. The birth of Jesus to the Virgin Mary contradicts other scriptures that advocate for the supernatural nature of Jesus as a pre-existent being

Eschatology and Theology of Hope

Eschatology should not be viewed as an end to the times. It is indeed a beginning. God`s past actions are irrelevant, but his future promises are important

Hope is an essential component that pushes Christians to continue marching forward. Theology of hope is important since, without hope, the value of Christianity is almost non-existent

  • Jeremiah 29:11. God knows his plans for us, and these plans are not for evil but for hope and a future

  • 1st Timothy 4:10. The hope of the living God and Savior of all people will enable believers to toil and strive

Eschatology and Ethics

This is the eschatological view that guides Christians on how to live today. Modern Christians live in an age sandwiched between the first coming of Christ and his second coming. Therefore, as they await the second coming, Christians should uphold ethical conduct and character

The moral view of eschatology is crucial. Christians should not just be concerned about the end times but should live the present life in a morally upright manner

  • 1 Corinthians 16:13-22. Be on the alert, stand firm in the faith, act like men, be strong. Let all that you do be done in love

Dispensationalist Eschatology

A theological perspective that the history of the Bible can be best understood by considering a succession of God`s dealings with human beings.

A dispensation is an important tool in understanding the scriptures. The division of the Bible promotes easy understanding of the Bible

  • Acts 2:4.

  • Revelation 20:3