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WAS O. T. ALLIS POSTMILLENNIAL?

Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr. —  Leave a comment

Dr. Allis first served as Instructor in Semitic Philology at the Princeton Theological Seminary from 1910-1922 and then as Assistant Professor of Semitic Philology at the same institution, from 1922-1929. Reorganization of the  Princeton Seminary placed modernists in control of the school and so prompted the resignations of Drs. Allis, J. Gresham Machen, Robert Dick Wilson and Cornelius Van Til and the subsequent formation of the Westminster Theological
Seminary.

Dr. Allis served as Professor of Old Testament History and Exegesis at Westminster from 1929-1930 and as Professor of Old Testament at the same institution from 1930-1936.  He was well known and influential as a Hebrew scholar of international repute. He also was strongly conservative and Reformed.

Though he did not write much on eschatology, he did comment some on this doctrine. Almost invariably when you read dispensational literature (and even some amillennial works), you will discover Allis listed as an amillennialist. He probably rolls over in his grave every time he hears this. And if weren’t dead already, this would kill him!

One evidence of his postmillennial orientation appears in the Foreword to Roderick Campbell’s Israel and the New Covenant. In that Foreword Dr. Allis writes:

“My own studies in this and related fields have convinced me that the most serious error in much of the current ‘prophetic’ teaching of today is the claim that the future of Christendom is to be read not in terms of Revival and Victory, but of growing impotence and apostasy, and that the only hope of the world is that the Lord will by His visible coming and reign complete the task which He has so plainly entrusted to the church. This claim . . . is pessimistic and defeatist. I hold it to be unscriptural. The language of the Great Commission is world-embracing; and it has back of it the authority and power of One who said: ‘All power is given unto Me in heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore and make disciples of all nations.’ The duty of the church is to address herself to the achieving of this task in anticipation of the Lord’s coming, and not to expect Him to call her away to glory before her task is accomplished.”

This statement exposes the error of those who classify him as anything other than postmillennial.

 

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Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.

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Ken is a Presbyterian pastor and the author or co-author of over thirty books, most on eschatology. He has been married since 1971, and has three children and several grandchildren. He is a graduate of Tennessee Temple University (B.A., 1973), Reformed Theological Seminary (M.Div., 1977), and Whitefield Theological Seminary (Th.M., 1986; Th.D., 1988). He currently pastors Living Hope Presbyterian Church (affiliated with the RPCGA) in Greer, SC. Much of his writing is in the field of eschatology, including his 600 page book, He Shall Have Dominion: A Postmillennial Eschatology and his 400 page, Before Jerusalem Fell: Dating the Book of Revelation (his Th.D. dissertation). He contributed chapters to two Zondervan CounterPoints books on eschatological issues: Three Views on the Millennium and Beyond (edited by Darrell L. Bock) and Four Views on the Book of Revelation (edited by C. Marvin Pate). He also debated Thomas D. Ice in Kregel's The Great Tribulation: Past or Future? His books have been published by American Vision, Baker, Zondervan, Kregel, P & R, Greenhaven Press, Nordskog, Wipf & Stock, and several other publishers. He has published scores of articles in such publications as Tabletalk, Westminster Theological Journal, Evangelical Theological Society Journal, Banner of Truth, Christianity Today, Antithesis, Contra Mundum, and others. He has spoken at over 100 conferences in America, the Caribbean, and Australia. He is a member of the Evangelical Theological Society and a Church Council Committee member of Coalition on Revival.

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