Understanding The Bible
Clarence E. Mason's "ESCHATOLOGY
SECTION 2G - Revelation
THE AGE OF JUDGMENT and
THE DISPENSATION OF EXPECTANCY
BY THE AUTHOR
Dr. Clarence E. Mason, Jr.
Philadelphia College of Bible
Edited by Dr. Clarence
E. Mason, Jr.
- Revelation 4-19 THE AGE
OF JUDGMENT and THE DISPENSATION OF EXPECTANCY
There are now three views held by premillennialists as to what to do
with the 70th Week of Daniel 9. Earlier premillenarian writers were largely
concerned with the judgments, beasts, movements of nations and armies, suffering
individual Jews who repented, Armageddon, Christ's deliverance of Israel
by His return, but--preeminently--with THE ANTICHRIST.
Alexander Reese and others, by the virulence of their attack on the pre-tribulation
position, aroused a storm of opposition. Much of the discussion on both
sides has been characterized by heat rather than light. The major issue
has now become when the Church will be raptured. This issue was secondary
in Scofield's day. Hence, there was no spelling out of the time of the rapture
However, the end result of this turn of events has been salutary, resulting
(1) Far more study concerning the nature of the period
(2) Far more emphasis upon the distinction between Israel and the Church
(3) A growing spirit of tolerance and a removal of the discussion from the
^f place of being considered "a heresy. " All recognize devout
believers are the only ones interested in the matter.
There are three possible views as to how the 70th Week should be viewed,
- View One: 70th WEEK
IS TO BE UNDERSTOOD AS A COMPLETION OF THE ISRAELITISH AGE OF LAW
Proponents of this view call attention to the fact that the Church age
is an insert between the 69th and 70th Weeks and urge that it does not
affect the theological continuity of the 70th Week as following the
69th. Thus, they urge that the same people (Israel and nations) are
again dealt with on the same principles as before the cross.
Objections to this viewpoint are:
- The incarnation, cross,
resurrection, and ascension of Christ cannot permit the idea of
leaving Israel, and the nations in the same place theologically.
They have had Messiah historically among them and rejected Him.
- They have had the witness
of His resurrection.
- They have had the witness
of a completed Bible.
- They have had the witness
of the career of the Church throughout 2000 years of history.
- They will, in that
period after the rapture have the presence of the apostate portion
of the Church as proof that something else has been here and changed
the status of things current at the end of the 69th Week.
All these factors presume a far greater stewardship of light than
they had under the dispensation of Law.
- View Two: 70th WEEK
CONSIDERED AS JUDGMENT AT THE END OF THE "MYSTERY" PERIOD
- "Mystery of kingdom"
and "Church mystery" periods are historically coextensive.
- Nevertheless, the true
Church is taken to heaven before the return of Christ to the earth.
Thus, the apostate church continues the mystery period on the earth
and the true church is simply considered as awaiting completion
of the judgments on earth before returning with Christ to the earth.
- The view confuses
"last days" of Israel with "last days" of
- It almost inevitably
makes us say to our hearers that there is no good reason to
object to the idea that all the church could be here through
the whole period.
- The age is called
Grace by Scofield. Yet, the 70th Week is the very opposite of
grace. It is the climax of the wrath of God in judgment.
- View Three: THE 70th
WEEK. SHOULD BE CONSIDERED A DISTINCT ENTITY IN ITSELF
There are so many great events and the period has such distinctive principles
that it cannot properly be made the end of any other period. It embodies
principles that are very different from previous dispensations.
- On the basis of 1 Cor.
10:32 Jews are not Gentiles; the Church is not Jews or Gentiles.
All three are distinct,
- The Church is not in
the 69 weeks; hence, not in the 70th Week. The apostate church is
really not the Church, but unrepentant Jews and Gentiles, falsely
posing as the Church.
- There is no good reason
to believe Old Testament saints go up with the Church at the translation.
Both Old Testament and New Testament descriptions picture saved
Israelites and Gentiles going into the kingdom, not up to meet the
- The distinctive principle
of judgment sets apart the age.
- Kingdom preaching will
include the facts of His historical first coming and atoning death
- This view is not open
to the objections listed under Views One and Two.
This view would tend to divorce the 70th Week from Weeks 1-69. But,
since there has been a divorcement timewise between the 69th and
70th Weeks, the addition of considerable light emphasizes that the
period is not a continuation but a completion of the 70th Week upon
different principles than the 69 weeks. Dan. 9:24-27 recognizes
that it is after the 69 weeks that Messiah is cut off. The destruction
of the city and the temple after the 69th Week, and before the covenant
starting the 70th Week, imply an interval. The N.T. supplies the
details of that interval.
If this period be viewed as a separate age (as per View Three),
the following may be noted:
- The key personages
are the Beast and False Prophet.
- The extent of the
period is the 70th Week of the prophecy of Daniel 9, (that period
from the rapture of the Church to meet the Lord in the air to
the second advent of Christ to the earth).
- The general Scripture
portions are found throughout all the Old Testament prophets
and Rev. 4-19, especially.
- The characteristic
or state of man during its course will be judgment upon man's
- The special responsibility
instituted by God will be response to the preaching of the Gospel
of the Kingdom. Mt. 24:14
- The failure of
man under the test is seen in the rejection of the witness of
the 144, 000, the worship of the Beast, and the following of
the False Prophet.
- The resultant judgment
will be seen in the destruction of the Harlot system (Rev. 17
and 18), the overthrow and judgment of human governments (Rev.
19:20, and the overthrow of Gentile powers (Rev. 19:17-19).
- The gracious intervention
of God will deliver the saints by the visible return of Christ
to the earth. The race is not blotted out (the days shortened)
and many will be saved in the tribulation period (Rev. 7; Mt.
200 Manor Avenue
Langhorne, PA 19047
United States of America
Notes" Study materials on this website are made available
here free, through the generosity of Cairn University,
and may be copied for use in Bible study groups, in limited numbers, providing
that no charge is made for them. No further distribution or use
of these materials is allowable under U.S. or International Copyright
Law without the express permission of Cairn University.