Throughout this series on eschatology, we have slowly been building a case for eschatological optimism. That is, Christ will triumph over the world through his church.
Jesus is presently reigning in heaven, subduing his enemies. He is renewing the earth, causing the rule of heaven to gradually descend upon the earth. The church is fulfilling the great commission, discipling the nations. All of this will produce a period of peace and joy and harmony that the world has not known since the garden.
As we look at the present state of the world, it appears that Jesus is committed to a long-term plan. For many, such long-term thinking may be disorienting. As one pastor quipped, we may still be in the early church.
That is, we generally think of the early church as the first few centuries after Christ’s first advent. However, if the present age lasts for say, ten thousand years, then our distant descendants will regard us as “early.”
In the next few posts, we will look at how to apply this eschatological optimism to our lives and what role we should take with regard to our present culture.