THE MOMENTOUS EVENT
Publisher BANNER OF TRUTH TRUST
The first edition of this little volume was published in 1945. It is a slightly edited version of a number of articles the author wrote for a Northern Irish evangelical periodical. It is short, sharp and to the point covering matters related to the three common views relating to what is usually called ‘the doctrine of the end times”. The writer compares the various merits of the three views, known as post-millennialism, pre-millennialism and what was called in those days non-millennialism. Nowadays the latter is called a-millennialism. The ‘a’ relates to the negative as found in the Greek language. The writer follows this view throughout in a reasoned and ordered way. He exposes the difficulties to be found in the other views of the events leading up to the coming of Christ and does not shirk allowing that there are difficulties to be found in the view he espouses as well. Overall, an unbiased reading of this book will lead the reader to a position in favour of the non-millennial. This view accords more with the general tenor of the scriptures and avoids some of the tortuous grappling with the literalism of the pre-millennial position in particular. Church history reveals that the position presented in this book accords more with that held by the majority of church fathers and the reformers of the church such as Luther and Calvin and many others. There is a good section on the words of Jesus in Matthew 24 and a very logical and simple over view of the Book of the Revelation. As we know, the subject of the ‘end times’ is sure to provoke strong words and reactive retorts, arguments and splits have often been grounded in strongly and non eirenic attitudes around this subject. This book is not particularly provocative although perhaps a few sentences could be regarded as rather disdainful of the struggles that the literalists have as they try to fit in thoughts of a secret rapture at a secret appearing of Jesus that leads to a thousand literal years on earth where the resurrected saints live on earth with non resurrected people and Jesus rules from Jerusalem and the complexities that such ideas produce. Of course, in the light of novels made popular in the last thirty years such as the Left Behind series a little book like this is welcome as it provides a focus on the Lord Jesus and the centrality of His second coming when He will bring to an end all things as we know them and bring in the new that shall never end. The only other book that I know of that seeks to handle these matters is ‘The Eclipse of Christ in Eschatology” by Adrio Konig and as the title suggests it is somewhat more overtly scholarly than W. J. Grier. Both books are very much worth reading by all desiring to consider seriously the events surrounding the coming of the Lord.