Stephen Whitsett BA
Middleism is word I coined to express a difference from the Partial
Preterist position held by Gentry and other who accept an early date in order to justify a “coming soon” while accepting all of the Olivet was fulfilled in 70 AD. As we stated before the principles we hold to is a late date of Revelation and Mathew 24 has nothing to do with a promise of a second coming. They are convinced to justify what happened to soon dictates that Revelation be about in part the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 AD.
The teaching of a second coming first appears in Acts 1:11 where the Angel promises “this” same Jesus will return. Paul adds to this by stating in I Thessalonians 4 and I Corinthians 15 a complete teaching of his second coming and the resurrection of the dead that occurs at the same time. In Thessalonians 4:16 he states, “The Lord himself descends”. The writer of Hebrews 9:28 states “he will appear a second time”. Rev 19 gives a picture of his return with his saints. Zechariah 14:5 states, “Then the LORD my God will come, and all the holy ones with him.”
There is no timing associated with his coming, meaning the bible never states when he will come.
Preterists assert that Revelation 3:11, states that his coming but happen in close proximity of time. The phrase “I am coming soon” does not necessarily mean “soon or quickly” he is coming but has more to the idea of the assurance of his coming at the right time, without being delayed, as nothing can stop, slow or prevent his coming.
“How” he comes Paul addresses two ways. The first is with the word Parousia which is used in scriptures as a noun to indicate an event, the event is his second personal physical bodily coming. As Parousia is used of a person who being absent is now “present”, (not presence). The other is “Epiphaneia” which means an “epiphany” is translated as an appearance, a glorious display of power and glory and the height of his life. His second coming then becomes the physical display of power in that he comes to expose the Lawless man as the fraud. I Thess 2:8-11, and with his coming he kills him in judgment.
His coming is to Jerusalem (Zech 14:3 Rev 20:9) to establish his Kingdom on Earth for a thousand years to rule over the nations with a rod of iron and in keeping with is prayer, “On Earth as it is in heaven”. And it states his saints will reign with him. (Rev 20:4).
As mentioned before the bible teaches a bodily resurrection of those in Christ who have died. (I Cor 15) and the very words “Anastasis Nekron” - “standing again corpse” The technical word is used to describe a “dead body that walks again” just as Christ did. (Preterists objection are addressed elsewhere). So those who have died in Christ will rise from their graves (Isa 26:19) and meet – apantesis – (I
Thess 4:17) in the air and those who are alive are transformed to have a glorious body like his (Phil 3:21), immortal and imperishable. We are meeting him in the air as he is coming to Jerusalem to rule and reign.
This gathering called the “Rapture” comes from the word “caught up” - which means to “seize” and in the Latin the word is used “Raptura” from which we get raptured.
The Millennium, a thousand-year time period, begins with satan being imprisoned, (Rev 20:1-4) locked up and prevented from “deceiving the nations any longer”. In verse 4 John sees a picture of souls before the throne, people who died under the persecution of the beast. H states they “came to life” and this is called the “first” resurrection, the same of I Corinthians 14 and I Thess 4 and they reigned with him.
At the end of this 1000 years satan is released from his prison to deceive the nations once again and raises an army to attack Jerusalem, “the city he loves”. Christ calls down fire and ends history. In the next scene every person who has ever lived stands before the judgment seat of Christ and is judged. Satan is thrown into the lake where the beast and false prophet “were”. This is the second resurrection of the rest of the dead. The unrighteous are sent to outer darkness and those whose names were written in the lamb’s book of life to everlasting life in a recreated earth. All of the old ways are gone and the curse is reversed. Christ and God dwell with man on a restored GARDEN OF EDEN on earth.
What follows after is eternity without end and it has not even entered man’s imagination what Christ has in store for us.
Giving an orthodox apologetic answer for Eschatology