THE question is often asked of those who believe in the fulfillment of all Bible prophecy (Luke 21:22), “Does Preterism have a future dimension to the teaching?” The answer to the question is, of course, Yes.
The fact of Biblical fulfillment is an established principle in the Scriptures, and includes results that continue beyond the time of fulfillment. For example, historically, Christians understand the sacrificial death of Jesus Christ to have been a “once-for-all-time” event (Heb. 7:27; 9:28), and yet the benefits of forgiveness and “eternal life” extend forward to those who put their faith and trust in Him today (John 3:16; I John 5:13). Faith and Justification from the consequences of sin and death are the very heart of what Jesus Christ came to accomplish and therefore believers living today have the reality of what was long ago promised.
Jesus came to bring believers a joyful and abundant life (John 10:10). This could only be accomplished by His death on the Cross and subsequent resurrection from the dead. The generation of believers living in the first-century experienced during their own lifetime the establishment of God’s everlasting Kingdom (Matt. 3:2; 4:17; Luke 21:31). It was because of what Christ had accomplished, and what was being accomplished during the 40 years between the time of the Cross and the Parousia, that believers could enjoy “in advance” the blessings of the promised “age to come” during their own lifetime (Heb. 6:5).
The last vestages of the Old Covenant system that could never bring life and righteousness was in the processing of vanishing away (Heb. 8:13), while the “more glorious” nature of the New Covenant system was being established. The power over sin and death had been broken at the Cross and now life and righteousness was beginning to dawn. In A.D. 70, the Roman armies under Titus destroyed the Temple and the city of Jerusalem, thus bringing an end to the age of promise, hope and expectation, and ushering in the “age to come” realities that had been promised.
The arrival of the “new heavens and a new earth” (II Pet. 3:13), would give these New Covenant believers and all those who would come in future generations, an eternal home “where righteous dwells.” The glorious arrival of the New Jerusalem forever signaled the time of the everlasting Presence of Christ with His people (Rev. 21:1-4). The “gates” to this City of God are ever open to allow God’s people the opportunity to minister to the “healing of the nations” (Rev. 22:2). Certainly, the nations need the Divine influence of believers who take the message of Christ to them and the principles of God’s Kingdom.
Does Preterism have a future? Absolutely. If you are a child of God, you have the most wonderful opportunity of the ages to take God’s love to everyone around you. Perhaps, today is that very day!