"Thou hast given a banner to them that fear thee, that it may be displayed because of truth." — (Psalm 60:4)
"Lift ye up a banner upon the high mountain, exalt the voice unto them." — (Isaiah 13:2)
Devoted To The Defense Of The Church Against All Errors And Innovations
Vol.V No.VII Pg.2-4
February 1943

"The Essential Point In Premillennialism"--No. 2

The invariable practice of the promoters of certain systems of heresy is to disguise some parts of their teaching. They become vague in their expressions on certain phases of their teaching—not because they do not have the ability to express themselves clearly, but because it serves their immediate purpose better not to do so. They purposely withhold those features of their theories which they realize will be received reluctantly until they can gain sympathy and win a favorable audience. Such was the character of the effort made by R. H. Boll in his radio speech in Chattanooga, Tennessee, which was printed and distributed, and published in Word and Work, and which was reprinted in the BIBLE BANNER last month.

This has been the method that Brother Boll has adopted in many of his meetings. Assuming to preach what he believes about the second coming of Christ, he frequently puts forward only those truths generally believed and accepted by us all, and with a flourish exclaims: "Now, what is wrong with that?" as though he neither believes nor teaches anything more than that! He would thus attempt to create the impression that he is being opposed and persecuted for preaching the second coming of Christ, though all who are in any degree familiar with the actual peculiarities of his teaching, know that in order to serve his purposes in these instances he has withheld and suppressed the objectionable parts of his doctrine.

That lack of common honor and honesty in dealing with argument is outstanding in the Bollistic document now under review. He gives "the essential point of premillennial teaching" under two heads, as follows:

The essential point in premillennial teaching is

1. That the Lord Jesus Christ will return from heaven.

2. That—if there is ever to be a time—

if there is ever to be such a time as that (and the Word of God bears that out) - then Christ must and will come before that time.

About the mildest thing that can be said of the foregoing deliverance is that it is a reflection on the information, if not an insult to the intelligence, of his hearers and readers. For instance: "The essential point in premillennial teaching is that the Lord Jesus Christ will return from heaven"! No one knows better than the author of that declaration himself that the statement is not true. We all believe "that the Lord Jesus Christ will return from heaven"—but we do not believe any part of premillennialism, and that fact is no part of premillennialism, much less the number one "essential point in premillennial teaching." Brother Boll has not increased confidence in his integrity by putting out such a manifestly insincere statement. For years he has complained that his beliefs have not been properly stated by his critics. Now, let him ask himself the question seriously—if he has fairly represented the belief of those who oppose premillennialism in that assertion of his. His own answer to the question will determine the degree of his honesty in making such a point-blank assertion. It is no wonder that he turned it loose as an assertion only, offering nothing whatever, even as a reference to sustain it.

Having dealt, however, with that No. 1 blank point in a previous editorial, we proceed now to deal with his No. 2 category. He asserts, but only asserts, "that if there is ever to be a time" for certain things mentioned in the New Testament to occur-"then Christ must and will come before that time." Well, of course, if He must come before that time, He surely will—anybody knows that. The form of language indicates that the author of it was feeling rather vindictive when he wrote that, or said it, and it leaves the impression that he is trying to make the Lord do something because a theory of his own requires it—He simply must (or my theory is wrong), therefore He will. Lord, you simply must save my face! I have said you would, Lord, now don't let me down!

Let us analyze these listed items under No. 2, and see what "must" occur from the passages cited. First in order is:


Peter declares in this passage that the heavens must receive (retain) the Christ until that which all the prophets have spoken "since the world began," shall be accomplished--"yea, and all the prophets from Samuel and them that followed after." Now, if the prophets predicted the millennium-and Brother Boll says they did--then Jesus must stay in heaven until the millennium is over. This is a must that Brother Boll has overlooked. Let us look at the passage itself in full:

12. And when Peter saw it, he answered unto the people, Ye men of Israel, why marvel ye at this? or why look ye so earnestly on us, as though by our own power or holiness we had made this man to walk?

13. The God of Abraham, and of Isaac, and of Jacob, the God of our fathers, hath glorified his Son Jesus; whom ye delivered up, and denied him in the presence of Pilate, when he was determined to let him go.

14. But ye denied the Holy One and the Just, and desired a murderer to be granted unto you;

15. And killed the Prince of life, whom God hath raised from the dead; whereof we are witnesses.

16. And his name through faith in his name hath made this man strong, whom ye see and know; yea, the faith which is by him hath given him this perfect soundness in the presence of you all.

17. And now, brethren, I wot that through ignorance ye did it, as did also your rulers.

18. But those things, which God before had shewed by the mouth of all his prophets, that Christ should suffer, he hath so fulfilled.

19. Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord;

20. And he shall send Jesus Christ, which before was preached unto you:

21. Whom the heaven must receive until the times of restitution of all things, which God hath spoken by the mouth of all his holy prophets since the world began.

22. For Moses truly said unto the fathers, A prophet shall the Lord your God raise up unto you of your brethren, like unto me; him shall ye hear in all things whatsoever he shall say unto you.

23. And it shall come to pass, that every soul, which will not hear that prophet, shall be destroyed from among the people.

24. Yea, and all the prophets from Samuel and those that follow after, as many as have spoken, have likewise foretold of these days.

25. Ye are the children of the prophets, and of the covenant which God made with our fathers, saying unto Abraham, And in thy seed shall all the kindreds of the earth be blessed.

26. Unto you first God, having raised up his Son Jesus, sent him to bless you, in turning away every one of you from his iniquities.

Let it be observed, first, that Brother Boll did not in his printed and published article quote this passage nor any part of it. He merely gave "Acts 3:19-21" as a reference and asserted that it is one item in that category of what he styles "the essential point in premillennial teaching." Let it be observed, second, that he did not include verse 18 in his reference. We wonder why--or do we? That verse contains the statement, "He hath so fulfilled," and does not help the future fulfillment "must" of Brother Boll. Let it be observed, third, that the remainder of the passage below verse 21 was not included in his reference, and that is significant, for it mentions the fulfillment of the very thing that Brother Boll says must yet come. I propose to prove this. But I want the readers first to see that Brother Boll deliberately excluded from his reference the portions of the passage which reveal that those things were fulfilled in the first coming of Christ and not at His second coming. Since he did not quote any of the passage, it would have consumed no more space to have included in his reference these important verses. Let it be observed, fourth, that he says the "time" of restoration, whereas the text says "times"--Peter says the times of the restitution, or restoration, of all things spoken by the prophets. Why does he use the singular "time" when the text uses the plural "times"? The difference has, a lot to do with the theory! If the heavens retain the Christ until the "time" of the restoration, He might come at the beginning, but since Christ stays in heaven until the "times" have been accomplished, then Christ does not leave heaven until it is over, and it ruins the Boll theory. Nor do I think that Brother Boll accidentally used the word "time" instead of the word "times," as it is in the text, because it is the invariable rule of the premillennialists to call it the time of the restitution. But let the readers remember the difference, and call their hand every time they do it. It may finally make an impression on them.

"He Hath So Fulfilled"-Acts 3:18-26

Let us now look into "Acts 3:19-21" and see if it holds within its bosom "the essential point of premillennial teaching."

1. The "things" of verse 18 and the "times" of verse 21 are all embraced in the events of the gospel dispensation "which God before had showed by the mouth of all the prophets" and which, says Peter to the Jews, "he hath so fulfilled." The term "hath fulfilled" is past tense and shows that "those things" belonged to something already come to pass. The word "so" indicates how "those things" had been fulfilled-namely, in connection with the first coming of Christ, His suffering (incarnation), resurrection and exaltation in heaven. (Verse 18.)

2. Moses referred to these times when he spoke of the prophet that God would raise up-Jesus Christ. (Verse 22.)

3. All the prophets "foretold of these days"--the days of this One of whom Moses spake--the Lord Jesus Christ. So "these days" and "the times" refer to the same period-the gospel dispensation. (Verse 24.)

4. These "days" and these "things" are the same as included in the promise to Abraham: "And in thy kindred shall all families of the earth be blessed." Paul specifically declares (Gal. 3:8-9) that this promise has been fulfilled in the gospel dispensation. And Peter specifically declares that God fulfilled all of these things which had been thus foretold when He "raised up His Son Jesus" and "sent Him to bless you, in turning away every one of you from your iniquities." (Verse 26.)

5. Therefore, the heavens must retain Christ until the times of the restoration of all things have been completed. The passage does not say that the heavens must retain Christ until the times of the restoration begin. The passage states that He will stay in heaven till the "all things" are restored--from the beginning of the times of the restoration to the completion of them. Brother Boll has it backwards-the second coming of Christ marks the end of the times of the restoration instead of the beginning.

The times of the restoration are in process, we are living in them now. If the passage refers to the millennium, as Brother Boll asserts, then he is faced with the dilemma that Christ will stay in heaven entirely through the millennium for the heavens must "receive" Him until the "all things" are restored, till the end of the times.

Hear McGarvey on the passage: "The sending of Christ to them refers no doubt to His final coming; and it was dependent on their obedience, as we can know from later utterances, though Peter's hearers could not know it at the time, in the general way that a certain amount of work in the saving of men was to be accomplished before his coming. This is indicated by the qualifying remark, whom the heaven must receive until the times of the restoration of all things whereof God spake by the mouth of his holy prophets since the world began.' It is difficult to determine the exact meaning of the word restoration in this place; but it is limited by the expression, all things whereof God spake by the holy prophets,' and consequently consists in the fulfillment of the Old Testament predictions; and the remark gives assurance that Jesus will not return again till all these predictions shall have been fulfilled."

If Brother Boll, or any other premillennialist, has ever attempted to offset the weight of this argument against their bald assertion that "Acts 3:19-21" embosoms "the essential point in premillennial teaching," it has not been seen in print. According to that prince of exegetes, J. W. McGarvey, and in fact the text itself, the times of the restoration begin with the suffering of Christ in verse 18 and end with the coming of Christ in verse 21.

Acts 2; Acts 3; And I Cor. 15

There are two statements in the quotation from McGarvey that should be given some emphasis. First: Whatever is comprehended in the times of the restoration must consist in the fulfillment of Old Testament predictions, since that expression is limited to the "all things whereof God spake by the holy prophets." Second: The passage is the proof that Jesus will not come again until all these predictions shall have been fulfilled. Let us consider the passage from that angle.

The prophets prophesied the end of death. Hosea said: "I will ransom them from the power of Sheol: I will redeem them from death: 0 death, where are thy plagues? 0 Sheol, where is thy destruction?" (Hos. 13:14.) Again, Isaiah says: "He hath swallowed up death forever; and the Lord Jehovah shall wipe away tears from off all their faces." (Isa.- 25:8.) In the fifteenth chapter of I Corinthians, the very chapter in which he discussed the abolition of death and "the end," Paul adapts these two prophecies, and with one sweep of the pen he refers them to the final resurrection, when death shall have been destroyed. The conclusion is inevitable: The heavens must retain Christ until all things spoken by the prophets "since the world began" are accomplished; the prophets prophesied the abolition of death; Jesus therefore stays in heaven until death is no more. But death has not been destroyed as long as there is one dead person in the grave. Therefore Jesus stays in heaven until the last dead person is raised. But the Corinthian passage also says, "for He must reign till He hath put all enemies under His feet," and "the last enemy that shall be destroyed is death." Likewise Peter declares in Acts 2:34 that Christ will sit at God's right hand in heaven until the last enemy is put down. Death is the last enemy. Therefore, Jesus must sit at God's right hand in heaven until death is destroyed, according to Peter in Acts 2; He must reign in heaven until death is destroyed, according to Paul in I Cor. 15; and the heavens must retain Him until death is no more, as the prophets predicted, according to Peter in Acts 3:19-21. It must be plain to all that there cannot be a millennium with Jesus Christ on earth between His second coming and the final resurrection of the dead.

But Brother Boll says: "If there is ever to be such a time (and the word of God bears that out)-then Christ must and will come before that time." It is evident that Boll's "must" does not agree with the "must" of Paul and Peter, in the passage cited. Peter says the heavens "must" retain Christ until all these things shall have occurred. Paul says that Christ "must" reign in heaven until the end of all these things. But Boll says that He "must" and He "will" come before that time. To the brethren in Chattanooga, Tennessee, and everywhere else, as far as the church is known--which "must" are you going to take? It is Paul and Peter versus R. H. Boll. I am persuaded that his "must" is but the child of his own perverted "will."

Boll-Brents-And Lipscomb

Concerning the assertions of R. H. Boll on the passage from Acts 3:19-21, there is only one thing more that deserves attention. It is the common practice of these men to seek to add prestige to their theories and give influence to themselves by quoting garbled extracts from McGarvey, Lipscomb, Lard, Brents, Campbell and others. We have already quoted McGarvey, and that settles any reference to him. In this issue appears an excellent article from T. B. Wilkinson entitled "Doctor Brents and Brother Boll," which takes care of both of them from my viewpoint. I also insert below an article in full from The Vindicator, published by E. C. Fuqua, Fort Worth, Texas, which is a complete answer to their constant twisting of a passage from the writings of David Lipscomb. Later on in this series we shall insert "some of the utterances of Campbell" and others, since they so often refer to them. This is not being done to prove the argument by what men say, but to prove the utter unreliability of these men among us who attempt to deceive the brethren by perverting the writings of dead men. Beyond that point I am not interested in what men,

as such, have taught. But Brother Fuqua takes care of the Lipscomb quotation. Read it:

David Lipscomb Distorted

In Word and Work, December, 1942, Brother Boll quotes from Brother David Lipscomb, and misapplies his language. He quotes the statement in an effort to show that Brother Lipscomb taught the Premillennium theory. But the quotation grants him no suffrage:

"Jesus had been to earth and returned to heaven. Heaven must receive him until the times of the restoration of all things.' Then the times of the restoration of all things' must be when Jesus returns again to earth-the restoration of all things to their original relation to God. The relation which the world originally sustained to God was broken when man, the ruler, rebelled against God. That destruction of the world's relation to God was more far-reaching and destructive than we realize. The whole material creation shared in the evil. Briars, thistles, thorns grew in the material world, as in the spiritual. Sickness, death, mortality afflicted the material world. When man rebelled against his Maker, the under creation rebelled against man. The laws of the natural world were disordered. The germs of vegetation put forth; biting frosts or burning heat destroys them. Disorder in the laws of the material world came as a result of man's sin against his Maker. When Jesus comes again, the will of God will be done on earth as it is in heaven, and all things in the world will be restored to harmonious relations with God, the Supreme Ruler of the universe."--Queries and Answers, page 360.

That quotation clearly shows that the "restoration of all things," when the will of God shall "be done on earth as it is in heaven," has reference to the "New Heavens and the New Earth" (II Peter 3:13), that will come into place at the coming of Christ. Before that time nothing of the kind will ever take place, for the condition described will be eternal, not for just a thousand years. That is what Brother Lipscomb taught.

That ought to settle that. While I do not personally subscribe to everything Brother Lipscomb taught, he certainly did not teach premillennialism. He taught the exact opposite of that theory, as Boll and his man, Hoover, both very well know. In the above quotation Brother Lipscomb has the "times of the restoration" completed where Boll and Hoover have it beginning. It assuredly does not favor their theory nor help their cause. It is the sheerest folly for these men to try to read into the scriptures they quote, and the writings of dead men, that earthly program of things which they themselves have so recently fabricated out of their own imaginations and wishful thinking.

Here we pause--but only to pause--for in the next article we shall resume the examination of this Boll-Hoover Chattanooga document. We propose to examine in detail every passage referred to in it, and to completely expose the fallacies and inaccuracies in which that document abounds. It shall not pass.