When did the church decree there won't be a literal millennium?


#1

I was reading in my Naverre Commentary where the Council of Trent ruled that Christ will not rule on earth for a thousand years and that the church has now been existing in the millennium? How could they infallibly declare this when both the bible and some early church fathers believed in a literal millennium at Christ’s return?


#2

In the creed, Jesus will come to judge the LIVING AND THE DEAD SO THERE IS NO SUCH TEACHING AS THE MILLENIUM in catholic church


#3

[quote=justcatholic]I was reading in my Naverre Commentary where the Council of Trent ruled that Christ will not rule on earth for a thousand years and that the church has now been existing in the millennium? How could they infallibly declare this when both the bible and some early church fathers believed in a literal millennium at Christ’s return?
[/quote]

Please don’t make me look it up… just kidding, if you need it I will. 1,000 years is as a day for God. I really can’t remember the verse, or even the book, if you’d like I will find it. Point is 1,000 years could also mean oh, say 365,000 years (if you’re a literalist)


#4

Most of the early fathers did not believe in the millennium, nor did they believe in it as dispensationalists do today. Besides, the early fathers were not infallible; only the Pope is when excercising his role in matters of faith and morals.


#5

Justin Martyr was the same church father who spoke on the real presence of Christ in the Eucharist.Also he wrote a whole chapter on Christian baptism. He further said Christ would establish his kingdom in Jerusalem for a thousand years at his return. How could Justin be right on two doctrinal subjects and yet be totally wrong about the millennium? Even the bible shows that Satan is not bound until Christ returns and overthrows the beast and the false prophet as Revelation 19 shows. That could only happen at his return.


#6

The “millennium” is not an actual time frame for our human calandar, if it was, then Jesus must have lied in Matthew 24, which is not the case.

[quote=] Matthew 24 :36 But of that day and hour no one knoweth, not the angels of heaven, but the Father alone.
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So your supposition of the millennium is in error. The error is explained in 2 Peter 3. which reflects PS 89.

[quote=] 2 Peter 3:8 But of this one thing be not ignorant, my beloved, that one day with the Lord is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.
[/quote]

[quote=] PS 89:3 Turn not man away to be brought low: and thou hast said: Be converted, O ye sons of men. 4 For a thousand years in thy sight are as yesterday, which is past. And as a watch in the night, 5 Things that are counted nothing, shall their years be.
[/quote]


#7

No, the millennium comes after the second coming of Christ as Justin Martyr and St John the Apostle wrote. It has nothing to do with when Christ will come, but rather what will happen after he returns. You misunderstand entirely.


#8

St. Bernard of Clairvaux was wrong about the Immaculate Conception. St. Justin can be wrong about the millennium.


#9

I rather believe St John the apostle, Justin Martyr and Irenaeus. They lived closer to the time of St John and had a fresher view of just what St John meant. I believe the church after the middle ages was heavily influenced by St Augustine, who lived long after Justin Martyr and Irenaeus.


#10

[quote=justcatholic]No, the millennium comes after the second coming of Christ as Justin Martyr and St John the Apostle wrote. the millennium comes after the second coming of Christ, but rather what will happen after he returns. You misunderstand entirely.
[/quote]

The fact still remains “2 Peter 3:8 But of this one thing be not ignorant, my beloved, that one day with the Lord is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.” It is not a literalist rendering. It does not matter if we’re trying to figure out when He is coming or how long His rule will last, it’s still impossible to determine.


#11

Revelation 20 can be interpreted in different ways. I prefer to trust the Church’s way.


#12

Tom, I see where you are coming from now. The verse you are referring to has to do when Christ will return. Peter was just saying that it could be a long time, because the Lord deals in long periods when dealing with the judgment of man. But the millennium follows the day of the Lord and Christ’s return and so is a separate time in itself. Besides Justin Martyr and Irenaeus both said it would be a thousand years in length. If the millennium would have been believed as a much longer time, then these church fathers would not have been so specific in saying Christ would reign in Jerusalem for a thousand years after his return.


#13

[quote=justcatholic]I was reading in my Naverre Commentary where the Council of Trent ruled that Christ will not rule on earth for a thousand years and that the church has now been existing in the millennium? How could they infallibly declare this when both the bible and some early church fathers believed in a literal millennium at Christ’s return?
[/quote]

A) The Bible does not teach this, as has been pointed out here.

B) As has also been pointed out, the factthat some Church Fathers believed this does not make it official teaching. Only the Magisterium can make this determination. If you are a Catholic, you should know this.

I rather believe St John the apostle, Justin Martyr and Irenaeus. They lived closer to the time of St John and had a fresher view of just what St John meant. I believe the church after the middle ages was heavily influenced by St Augustine, who lived long after Justin Martyr and Irenaeus.

The charge that Augustine somehow singlehandedly overturned Catholic biblical interpretation is one commonly repeated in anti-Catholic literature, especially those who are of a pre-millenial dispensationalist bent.


#14

Sarah

       Revelation 20 certainly can be interpreted different ways and it has. But the question remains wouldn't Justin Martyr and Irenaeus have a better understanding of what John the Apostle meant, since they both lived shortly after his writing? There were other fathers as well who felt the same way.

     You say, well I rather trust my church. But weren't Justin  Martyr and Irenaeus a part of the same church you are in as well? Irenaeus, by the way was a church bishop in his time.

#15

fidelis

       Was there a magnistarium in the time of Justin Martyr and Irenaeus? Did what they believe and write about, count for anything? You are saying in so many words that what what was once believed by John the apostle, Justin and Irenaeus could be overturned by a much later magisterium centuries later. Just like eating meat on Friday was once a mortal sin and now it isn't? Sounds fishy to me. :)

#16

The Magisterium is the teaching authority of the Church that Christ founded. It was there from the time of Christ to the present. What the Church declares as true is true, what it declares as false is false.

Just because someone was an early Church Father doesn’t mean that they were absolutely right about everything. The only individual that is infallible in matters of faith and morals is the Pope. Many things back in the early Church were undefined and more open to discussion. Once something is declared infallible dogma, by an extraordinary teaching of the Magisterium (such as an ex cathedra pronouncement from the Pope like the Assumption of Mary) or an ordinary teaching of the Magisterium (the teaching of an official Council, in line and in unity with the Pope, like Trent ) the case is closed.

Fathers don’t have this authority, although they have laid some of the groundwork for the Church’s teachings-they are not infallible.

I would suggest that you do some more extensive reading on the Church, its dogmas and teachings. Start with the Catechism. :thumbsup:


#17

As has been pointed out, the worthies you mention, JC, are to be honored and their opinions are important because in many instances they reflect the mind of the church during their lifetimes. But they were not and are not the magisterium. They made mistakes too. Some of them big. They did not all agree on the canon of scripture for one thing. All of their opinions are not equal. It is the church that is the pillar and foundation / the bulwark and ground of truth … not scripture, not justin Martyr, not me, not you.

Apocalyptic literature is difficult to understand. Revelation was written to comfort its intended audience yet today we find its language frightening. Apocalyptic literature used stock phrases images and some of the meanings of those images has been lost. We do know that numbers are rarely if ever to be taken at face value. You argue that the ECFs you mention take the numbers literally. Let’s assume that their proximity to the time Revelation was written means that they do know the symbolism contained in the images and numbers … then it is likely that they used the images and numbers with their original meaning in their commentaries and not in the literal sense you assume they have.


#18

The majority of the second century fathers defined the thousand years as a literal millennial reign of the sains on the earth or in a rebuilt Jerusalem. But there are ndications that this may not have been niversally held. We read Justin Marytyr in his dialogue with Tryho:

"But I and others, who are right-minded Christians on all points, are assured that there will be a resurrection of the dead, and a thousand years in Jerusalem, which will then be built, adorned, and enlarged, the prophets Ezekiel and Isaiah and others declare… [John allegedly prophesies] our Christ would dwell a thousand years in Jerusalem; and that thereafter the general, and, in short, the eternal resurrection and judgment of all men would likewise take place. " (Dialogue with Trypho 80-81)

Yet, speaking of this pre-millennial doctrine:

“I admitted to you formerly, that I and many others are of this opinion, and [believe] that such will take place, as you assuredly are aware; but, on the other hand, I signified to you that many who belong to the pure and pious faith, and are true Christians, think otherwise.” (Ibid. 80)

Might there have been competing interpretations of Revelation 20 in Second Century? It seems so.


#19

[quote=justcatholic]Was there a magnistarium in the time of Justin Martyr and Irenaeus?
[/quote]

Yes, since Matthew 16:18-19

Did what they believe and write about, count for anything?

Certainly, but as I (and others repeatedly have) said, they are not the Magisterium.

You are saying in so many words that what what was once believed by John the apostle,

Based, I’m assuming you mean, on the erroneous interpretation of the Book of Revelation that says he meant a literal millenial reign.

Justin and Irenaeus could be overturned by a much later magisterium centuries later.

They weren’t “overturned” because they made no infallible pronouncement because they did not have the authority to as none of the Church Fathers did unless they were the Pope.

Just like eating meat on Friday was once a mortal sin and now it isn’t? Sounds fishy to me. :slight_smile:

A time-worn anti-Catholic canard that confuses temporary disciplines with magisterial pronouncements of dogma. Have you considered investing in a Catechism? :slight_smile:


#20

Notice closely the quote of Justin Martyr that Adventistnomore posted.

"**But I and others, who are right-minded Christians ** on all points, **are assured ** that there will be a resurrection of the dead, and a thousand years in Jerusalem, which will then be built, adorned, and enlarged, the prophets Ezekiel and Isaiah and others declare… [John allegedly prophesies] our Christ would dwell a thousand years in Jerusalem; and that thereafter the general, and, in short, the eternal resurrection and judgment of all men would likewise take place. " (Dialogue with Trypho 80-81) emphasis mine.

                              This was not just Justin Martyr's opinion, but he was speaking for **right minded Christians ** of his time as well.

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