Then comes the end, when He delivers up the kingdom to the God and Father, when He has abolished all rule and all authority and power. For He must reign until He has put all His enemies under His feet. –I Corinthians 15:24-25
Keith Mathison’s introduction to Postmillennialism remains–in my estimation–one of the three best introductions to an optimistic eschatology in the last 50 years (Marcellus Kik’s An Eschatology of Victory and Kenneth Gentry’s He Shall Have Dominion being the other two). Mathison is well read and his research reveals a breadth of knowledge of both Amillennial and Premillennial thinking. His interaction with both camps validate his scholarship.
The book surveys the progress of redemptive history and reveals the conquering power of the gospel from Genesis and its climactic fulfillment in the Messiah. The reader will be particularly encouraged by the detailed exposition of the Olivet Discourse in Matthew 24 and a helpful overview of the Book of Revelation.
Matthison has done a great service to the church in presenting the historical, theological and exegetical insights that confirm an optimistic view of history under the victorious rule of King Jesus.
The writer also provides a helpful and needful critique of the internet phenomenon of full-preterism. Full or unorthodox Preterism teaches that all things have been fulfilled in the destruction of the Temple in AD 70. Mathison analyzes and debunks such dangerous and a-historical teaching.
Mathison mentored me through an independent study I did at Reformed Seminary in Orlando. We spent many mornings together discussing various issues concerning eschatology and sacramentology. Since the writing of this book, Mathison has undergone some theological changes; though he may view it as “theological maturation.” In a recent interview he observed that both Amil and Postmil could be applied to his current eschatological position. Though I understand his underlying motivation and his desire for a certain skepticism about these long-debated issues, the reality is that either one believes in the gospel-success prior to the second coming (postmil) or one denies this progress (amil).
Mathison’s latest work is a much larger outworking of his research in this area. Nevertheless, Postmillennialism: An Eschatology of Hope remains an outstanding summary of the eschatology of Athanasius and B.B. Warfield.