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Christian Biblical Studies
H. GRATTON GUINNESS ON PRE-MILLENNIALISM
H. Grattan Guinness, The Approaching End of the Age (London: Hodder and Stoughton; 1878), pp. 95, 96.
‘The . . . Presentist interpretation, is that historic Protestant view of these [Apocalyptic] prophecies, which considers them to predict the great events to happen in the world and in the church, from St. John’s time to the coming of the Lord . . . . This view originated about the eleventh century, with those who even then began to protest, against the growing corruptions of the Church of Rome. It grew among the Waldenses, Wickliffites, and Hussites, into a consistent scheme of interpretation, and was embraced with enthusiasm and held with intense conviction of its truth, by the Reformers of the sixteenth century. . . . It was held and taught by Joachim Abbas, Walter Brute, Luther, Zwingle, Melanchthon, Calvin, and all the rest of the Reformers; by Bullinger, Bale, and Foxe; by Brightman and Mede, Sir Isaac Newton and Bishop Newton, Vitringa, Daubuz and Whiston, as well as by Faber, Cunningham, Frere, Birks and Elliott; no two of these may agree on all questions of minor detail, but they agree on the grand outline, and each one has added more or less to the strength and solidity of the system, by his researches. During the last seven centuries this system has been deepening its hold on the convictions of the Christian church, and has been embraced by some of her wisest and best guides and teachers. It originated with martyrs and confessors, exerted a sanctifying and strengthening influence over those who received it; it tended to revive the hope of the premillennial coming of the Lord, which had long lain in abeyance, leading naturally to many false anticipations of that event, which have been disproved by time, as well as to many very remarkable approximations to the truth, as to the time of other events.’