“Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations…teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age” (Matthew 28:19-20, NASB).


1) Premillennialism: Does It Matter? (Frank Himmel)
2) Unkept Promises (Frank Himmel)
3) Saved to Serve (video sermon, Tom Edwards)
4) News & Notes


Premillennialism: Does It Matter?

Frank Himmel

Premillennialism is the doctrine that Jesus will one day return and reign on earth for a thousand years. Its big-word name comes from pre-, before, and millennium, a thousand years. The idea is that we are now living prior to that coming era. While specifics vary greatly from one theorist to another, the idea is generally as follows.

The Theory

When Jesus came 2,000 years ago, He intended to set up an earthly kingdom and reign over the Jews, but they rejected Him. He therefore announced the church as a substitute, stop-gap measure until He could return and set up His kingdom. Jesus died, arose, and ascended back to heaven. The Holy Spirit came on Pentecost and the church was established.

At some future time, usually thought to be not long from now, Christ will return for His saints. The righteous dead will be raised and those who are still living will be “raptured,” caught up to be with Christ in heaven. They will remain with Him there for seven years while the earth undergoes a period of great tribulation. (Some theories have the rapture in the middle or even at the end of the tribulation). Large numbers of Jews will return to Palestine. The Antichrist, a powerful, ungodly ruler, will take over the world. Despite unprecedented persecution of Christians, many will be converted during this period.

At the end of the tribulation, all nations will gather against Israel at Armageddon. Christ and His saints will return, and Christians who were martyred during the tribulation will be raised. The Antichrist will be defeated and Christ’s kingdom established on earth. The nations will then be judged. Christ will sit on the throne of David in Jerusalem for a thousand years, His saints ruling with Him.

At the end of the 1,000 years, Satan will be loosed, summoning Gog and Magog to join him. But he will again be defeated. At that time, the wicked will be raised, the final judgment will occur, and souls will be assigned their eternal place in heaven or hell.

This theory was once held by only a handful of religious groups, but now it has become mainstream in denominationalism. In the 1970s it was popularized by Hal Lindsey’s books, beginning with The Late Great Planet Earth. More recently it was advocated in the Left Behind series of books and movies.

Does It Matter?

For the next several weeks we will address various flaws in the theory, some “millennial miscues.” Why talk about this subject? Does it really matter? Some say even if the theory is wrong it makes little difference because it is merely a discussion of what will happen when Jesus comes. But error has ramifications, and in this case they are hardly insignificant. Consider what is at stake.

The integrity of the Scriptures. The test of a prophet, whether he is speaking for God, is whether what he foretells comes to pass (Deuteronomy 18:22). If he fails, we should pay no attention to anything he says. If Old Testament predictions of the reign of Christ were not fulfilled when the prophets said they would be, we must reject those prophets and everything they wrote—the Bible.

Availability of forgiveness of sins. The Bible affirms that forgiveness is in Christ’s kingdom (Colossians 1:13-14). Those purchased with Jesus’ blood are the kingdom (Revelation 5:9-10). Indeed, Jesus’ kingship and His priesthood, through which He makes atonement for us, are inseparable (Zechariah. 6:12-13). If Jesus’ kingdom is not yet here, we do not yet have forgiveness of sins.

Requirements for salvation. Increasing numbers are saying that Jews are saved without coming to Christ. Again, this is due in no small part to premillennial misconceptions about their place in God’s plan. Yet Jesus plainly told Jews, “. . . unless you believe that I am He, you will die in your sins” (John 8:24).

These are but a few considerations. Open your Bibles and minds, and study along with us.

— Via Pathlights, January 9, 2022


Unkept Promises

Frank Himmell

Those who believe Jesus will one day return and set up an earthly kingdom in Jerusalem frequently argue that this must occur because the land promises God made to Israel in the Old Testament have never been fulfilled. What does the Bible say?

The Promise to Abraham

God promised Abraham that He would make of him a great nation and give to that nation the land of Canaan (Genesis 12:1-3, 7). The borders were specific: “from the river of Egypt [the Wadi el Arish, not the Nile] as far as the great river, the river Euphrates” (Genesis 15:18). The time was also specified: following a 400-year bondage and when the iniquity of the Amorite was complete (vv. 13-16). (The Amorites were living in Canaan in Abraham’s day.) The land promise was repeated to Isaac (Genesis 26:3-4) and Jacob (Genesis 28:13).

Moses led the Israelites, Abraham’s family/nation, out of Egypt after 430 years of bondage (Exodus 12:40-41), just as God had promised. In anticipation of conquering Canaan, God told Moses to set aside three cities of refuge east of the Jordan River. He then added, “If the Lord your God enlarges your territory, just as He has sworn to your fathers, and gives you all the land which He promised to give your fathers . . . then you shall add three more cities for yourself, besides these three” (Deuteronomy 19:8-9).

Joshua succeeded Moses as Israel’s leader. The book bearing his name details the conquest and division of the promised land. The end of that record says, “So the Lord gave Israel all the land which He had sworn to give to their fathers, and they possessed it and lived in it” (Joshua 21:43). “Not one of the good promises which the Lord had made to the house of Israel failed; all came to pass”. (v. 45). This fact is confirmed by appointment of those three additional cities of refuge God promised (Joshua 20:1-9).

In his farewell address, Joshua made a passionate plea to Israel, based on the complete fulfillment of God’s promises. He argued that just as surely as God had kept the good words He had promised, so He would also keep His threat of removing Israel from the land if the people were unfaithful (23:14-16). Joshua’s argument was nonsense if premillennial notions of unfulfilled promises are true!

Some contend that God gave Israel their land in a sense but not to the full extent He promised. The sacred historians disagree. “Now Solomon ruled over all the kingdoms from the [Euphrates] River to the land of the Philistines and to the border of Egypt” (1 Kings 4:21; 2 Chronicles 9:26). This was precisely what God had promised Abraham.

The Return Promise

Israel got their land. But just as Joshua warned, when they were unfaithful to God, He removed them from it into captivity. Yet God had made another promise: that if, in captivity, they repented, He would return them to their land (Deuteronomy 30:1-10). And so, the prophets who foretold the captivity also prophesied a restoration. Jeremiah said the captivity would last seventy years (25:11; 29:10-14), then God would restore a remnant of His people (23:3). Isaiah also spoke of the remnant (10:20-24). God did not promise to bring them all back!

This promise, too, was fulfilled. Assyria and Babylon were the captors of God’s people. At end of the seventy years of captivity in Babylon, God raised up Cyrus of Persia to defeat the Babylonians. In his first year, Cyrus issued this proclamation: “Thus says Cyrus king of Persia, ‘The Lord, the God of heaven, has given me all the kingdoms of the earth, and He has appointed me to build Him a house in Jerusalem, which is in Judah. Whoever there is among you of all His people, may the Lord his God be with him, and let him go up!”. (2 Chronicles 36:23). This decree was in fulfillment of Jeremiah’s prophecy (v. 22).

One group returned under Jeshua and Zerubbabel, another under Ezra, and later a third with Nehemiah. Interestingly, these also testified that God had kept His land promise (Nehemiah 9:8).


The Bible is clear: God’s promises regarding the nation of Israel living in the land of Palestine were fulfilled long ago. There is nothing here to support the idea of a future earthly kingdom ruled by Jesus.

— Via Pathlights, January 16, 2022


Saved to Serve

Tom Edwards

Just click on the following link for the video sermon “Saved to Serve”:



News & Notes

Folks to continue praying for:

Rick Cuthbertson began his new treatment Thursday before last.  The following day his blood work looked good.  But it might be the new medication that has caused him to have several difficult days, which, hopefully, will improve soon.   

Even with bone cancer, Lois Fletcher is feeling pretty good and able to work.  Since she is not able to have chemo, due to being allergic to it and many other things, she is continuing with her homeopathic treatments.  

A.J. Joyner saw his doctor last week, due to a torn muscle in his arm. The x-ray showed that there were no bones broken, but the arm has been giving him trouble; and last night he was feeling dizzy. He will be seeing his doctor again in two weeks.

As of last night, Ronnie Davis is still having to be on oxygen, along with the new medication. His appointment to see his doctor again March 19 is still on. 

Let us also be remembering in prayer Tammy Griffey, Jim Lively, Deborah Medlock, Rex Hadley, Vivian Foster, Danielle Bartlett, Kayla Williams, and Kim Rowell.

The Steps That Lead to Eternal Salvation

1) Hear the gospel — for that is how faith comes (Rom. 10:17; John 20:30-31).

2) Believe in the deity of Jesus Christ, the Son of God (John 8:24; John 3:18).

3) Repent of sins.  For every accountable person has sinned (Romans 3:23; Romans 3:10), which causes one to be spiritually dead (Ephesians 2:1) and separated from God (Isaiah 59:1-2; Romans 6:23). Therefore, repentance of sin is necessary (Luke 13:5; Acts 17:30).  For whether the sin seems great or small, there will still be the same penalty for either (Matt. 12:36-37; 2 Cor. 5:10) — and even for a lie (Rev. 21:8).

4) Confess faith in Christ (Rom. 10:9-10; Acts 8:36-38).

5) Be baptized in water for the remission of sins (Mark 16:16; Acts 2:38; 22:16; 1 Pet. 3:21).  This is the final step that puts one into Christ (Gal. 3:26-27).  For from that baptism, one is then raised as a new creature (2 Cor. 5:17), having all sins forgiven and beginning a new life as a Christian (Rom. 6:3-4). For the one being baptized does so “through faith in the working of God” (Col. 2:12). In other words, believing that God will keep His word and forgive after one submits to these necessary steps. And now as a Christian, we then need to…

6) Continue in the faith by living for the Lord; for, if not, salvation can be lost (Matt. 24:13; Heb. 10:36-39; Rev. 2:10; 2 Pet. 2:20-22).

Tebeau Street
1402 Tebeau Street, Waycross, GA  31501

Sunday: 9 a.m.
Bible Class and 10 a.m. Worship Service. 

We also have a Song Service at 5 p.m. for every first Sunday of the month.

evangelist/editor: Tom Edwards (912) 281-9917

https://thomastedwards.com/go/all.htm (This is a link to the older version of the Gospel Observer website, but with bulletins going back to March 4, 1990.)