Sjolander Road Fellowship

Declaring the God of Unconditional Love

Preterism- A fulfilled understanding of prophecy

“These sayings are faithful and true: and the Lord God of the holy prophets sent his angels to show unto his servants the things which must shortly be done.” Revelations 22:6

“For these be the days of vengeance, that all things which are written may be fulfilled.” Luke 21:22

Preterism, as defined here, is the conviction that Jesus Christ has already completely fulfilled all prophecy concerning God’s plan to redeem man. No Old Testament prophecy remains unfulfilled in our day (Matthew 5:17-18). New Testament prophecy is simply a restatement of prophecy in the Old Testament (Acts 26:22).

Preterism recognizes that the benefits of the New Covenant and the Kingdom of God became a complete reality over a period of time. This transition period, known as the “last days” (Hebrews 1:1), began with the working of John the Baptist (Luke 16:16) and extended to the coming again of Jesus in that same generation (Matthew 24:30-34). All blessings of the kingdom have been received, and the kingdom now exists in its mature state. These new covenant blessings include peace (Luke 2:14), victory over death (I Corinthians 15:54), and face to face communion with Jesus in the New Jerusalem (Revelations 21:2, 22:3-4). The inability of most to see the present reality of these promised spiritual blessings is based on the fact that they seek to experience them with the physical senses (Luke 17:20-21).

Preterism distinguishes itself from both the orthodox Jewish and the conventional Christian understanding of scripture. Orthodox Judaism still looks for a future initial coming of the prophesied Messiah to begin the work of fulfilling the promises made to Abraham and his descendants. Traditional Christianity teaches that the Jewish Messiah has already come but that his work remains incomplete, awaiting his second coming or advent. This second coming has been anticipated for nearly 2000 years now. Preterism, on the other hand, sees a completed messianic work within the framework of the generation of Christ’s earthly ministry (Matthew 16: 27-28).

The traditional understanding of an incomplete plan of redemption diverts attention from the possibility of spiritual fulfillment and victory here and now. Instead, the focus is always on the indeterminate future when Christ must return to ultimately “make things right.” The result is often a sense of resignation to the current spiritual state of the world.

From the Preterist viewpoint, there is no present day inadequacy or incompleteness to the New Covenant. What God said He would do He has done. The present spiritual state of the world does not result from any unfinished aspect of God’s plan of redemption, nor is it a matter of prophetic fulfillment. Instead, it results from mankind’s ignorance of Christ’s completed work and its world changing significance.