Before I begin, I want to disclose that, as far as Biblical End Times go, I am a Futurist, which means I don’t believe the End Times have started (though I believe they’re gearing up), and found this book to be very degrading to my point of view. Victorious Eschatology presents a watered-down view of a Preterist (those who see the End Times as have already happened.) They call themselves Partial Preterists, while some things have happened; they are still waiting for others.
I had high expectations for Victorious Eschatology, so I was surprised to find that this is one of the most insulting books I have ever read. It is dishonoring to any opposing views, the Catholic Church, and, in particular, to our Jewish brothers and sisters.
While I agree that there are Futurists who have some bizarre and out there theories on explaining the End Times, it did not merit the critical spirit that comes against them in this book. We are called everything short of fear mongers. Any new believer reading the book would assume that Futurists are nothing, but a bunch of Christians that give ultimate power to the devil on the earth. This is not the case.
One instance where the authors of Victorious Eschatology totally mischaracterize Futurists is when they are discussing the seven letters at the beginning of the book of Revelations. They claim that “most” Futurists believe this is a representation of the periods of history in the church. This is not true. While this is a popular belief, it is most accepted in the non-Charismatic/Pentecostal groups. Many Spirit-filled Christians do not believe this, and see it as simply an introduction to the Book of Revelations, like the authors do.
The authors also contradict themselves. For instance, they claim that Futurists over-spiritualize the Book of Revelations, and then do so themselves. For instance, they claim Futurists use fear when discussing the Four Horsemen and the destruction they bring. According to the partial preterists, these are merely principalities. However, in just a few pages over, they begin discussing the Mother and the Child in Revelations 12. They proceed to say it is not simply the Virgin Mary or the Church (as the Futurists claim), but in fact, and I quote: the Virgin Mary, Eve, Abraham, David, the Jewish People, God’s heart, God’s promises received by His people, and finally, the Holy Spirit. Wow! So, they do the very thing they accuse us fear mongering Futurists of doing. Incredible.
I am also confused at how they attack the Jewish people in the book. They claim that Christ did not ascend to the throne until the temple at Jerusalem was destroyed. So, let me get this straight, Christ ascended to Heaven around 33 AD conservatively, (if he ministered for three years) and the temple was destroyed in 70 AD. It took Christ around 37 years to get on His throne after His ascension? Seriously? The Jewish faith had to be eradicated for that to happen? I thought the veil was torn, so God’s presence was released onto the earth. I also recall Jesus saying, “I have come not to destroy the law, but to fulfill it.” Very interesting. They also claim that the persecution of the Jews by the Romans was God’s judgment on them. I thought Jesus took punishment for their sins, same as everyone.
One final note, they claim that the world is not getting worse, but getting better, however, they only quote statistics from the United States of America. Let us examine this. First of all, in the USA alone, abortion use to be illegal, and now it is legal. Prostitution is legal in Nevada. Chicago and New York have incredibly high murder rates. Someone can cut life support from a human even if someone else wants to take care of them. Now, on to some international bullet points. In England, Muslims can try civil cases according to Sharia Law. England also has one of the highest murder rates in the world. Japan has an amazing suicide rate. There were genocides in several countries in Africa. Christians are being burned and crucified all over the Middle East. In Sudan, Christians are literally being eaten alive. In Communist countries, they rape, murder, and maim Christians for following their faith. In Burma, Christians are fed to wild boars. Need I go on? I challenge any partial preterist who believes the earth is slowly getting better to look a survivor of the Rwanda genocide, the persecuted Christians in the Middle East, and the surviving Christians under Communism to look them in the eye and say, “No Christ is not coming back for you, but don’t worry, the world will get better and then the Kingdom will come.”
The book itself claims that God’s Kingdom will come like the days of Noah, and to their credit, Jesus did say that and that it will be fast and not expected. However, what were the days like in Noah’s time? There was debauchery, murder, mayhem, and terrorism. Only the righteous survived. The Church always prospers under persecution. So, yes, I believe Christ will be coming and will Rapture us.
I do agree with one thing from the book, our church will be victorious because we always survive persecution. Christians will experience an End Time revival of salvations, miracles, healings, and an outpouring of God’s love.
What did I learn from this book? How did I grow from it? I did not, except how not to write a book on Eschatology. That is, without accusations, contradictions, and poor research.