Joseph Mede and Millenianism

I recently came across a very thoroughly research about Joseph Mede (1586-1638). I was very happy to see this study and revision of the ideas of this very important man who founded the basement of Millenianism. Many Puritan and modern Evangelic views on this subject can be traced back to this man.

dr. jeffrey k. jue

dr. Jeffrey K. Jue

This is the book: Jeffrey.K. Jue: Heaven Upon Earth. Joseph Mede (1586-1638) and the Legacy of Millenarianism. 2006.

It is important to know that this research shows that it is not Mede who caused Millenium activism. It were rather his fellows who abused his views and gain political profit from it. Or theologians who rejected (some of) his views on millenianism, because they missed the base and view of this well learned man. It is really sad that also in my own church the legacy of these controverses caused the denial of a future of a 1000 years of peace and kingship of our Lord Jesus. What are they doing with His glorious reign? How do they bless and seek the glory of God? Do they see it now, or in history? I can’t get it not to see it in the future.

But this study encourages me! For years a had still in mind, and it developed over time, that the saying ” the day of the Lord” or “the judgement day” would be that millenial day. And now I see here that this already was an insight of Mede! He stressed that this was a Jewish idea, what the Jewish apostles had in mind. And even the apostle Peter mentioned para-biblical Rabbinical sources and not only Ps.90. I undoubtedly was led to this insight by Rabbinical guidance in exposing biblical scriptures. Only some understanding of Hebrew is enough to go on that way.

Another point were I highly agree with, is the view on the Pope as the Antichrist. A reign dominated by the antichrist for 1260 years with a rise and a fall, that is what we live in now, and thereafter the redemption of the Jews, together with the re-establishing of the real Ecclesia and  the resurrection of the righteous and a peaceful age of people who shall come the mountain of Zion, shall emerge. (Is.2) Most Evangelicals and others differ from this view by placing the 70th week of Daniel 9 into the future, expecting thus a future Antichrist.

I’m really impressed by the work of Jeffry K. Jue. It’s worth it to reconsider Joseph Mede. It will give great benefit to the church if they will listen carefully.

I was lucky to got the book from our university library. It costs above 200 Dollars!

To give you just one citation:

“Logically, Christianity shares numerous similarities with Judaism which are not subjected to criticism. Why then should chiliasm? Mede listed a few of the most salient common beliefs. First both Christians and Jews agree that there will be a paradise in the world to come. Mede asked, “Doe not we Christians consent with the Jewes in these things? Have not we names likewise (of the Kingdome of Heaven…) from the Jewish Rabbins?” Second, Christians and Jews both concur that there will be a day of judgement. In fact, Mede argued that the Apostle Peter’s use of the term “day of judgement” was taken from the common Jewish expression – the “Vulgare form and manner of the Jewes” and not the more commonly assumed source, the book of Psalms. Mede’s intent was to demonstrate that mere similarities with Judaism were no ground in itself for dismissing chiliasm as heretical or erroneous. Therefore dismissing chiliasm because it resembled doctrines found in Judaism was neither an adequate nor persuasive accusation.” (page 131/132).

 

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