The millennium is vital to a correct understanding of the gospel and the great controversy, according to Pastor Peter Colquhoun, retired church administrator and author of The Cross and the Millennium, a new book from Signs Publishing.
“Without the story of the millennium, there would simply be no good news for planet Earth,” says Pastor Colquhoun. In fact, the millennial events—the second coming of Jesus, the millennium, the end of evil and the re-creation of the world—have been central to Adventist hopes and beliefs since the beginning of our movement, he urges.
Despite this, there has been surprisingly little written on this subject. “Adventists have long believed in the premillennial second coming of Jesus,” says Nathan Brown, book editor at Signs Publishing, “But we struggled to find a previous book-length study of the millennium in the history of Adventist publishing.”
Now living on Queensland’s Gold Coast, Pastor Colquhoun served the Adventist Church as a missionary, pastor, evangelist, Dean of Students at the then Avondale College, and President of the South New Zealand, Western Australia, South Queensland and North New South Wales conferences. The Cross and the Millennium is his first book.
Described in Revelation 20, the millennium has been the subject of speculation and misinterpretation among the broader Christian church for centuries. Since the time of Augustine, different models of prophetic interpretation have produced varying understandings about the end times—with important consequences for religion, politics, international relations and culture. Pastor Colquhoun says that some of these religio-political agendas come with significant end-time connotations.
The solution, he believes, is to pair our prophetic study of Revelation with a Christological approach—looking at the millennium through the lens of the gospel, Jesus’ work in bringing the great controversy to a close. “Separate the millennial events from the cross and they are meaningless,” Pastor Colquhoun states. “And without the consummating final events of Earth’s history, the cross would be a vain hope.”
The Cross and the Millennium examines end-time events in both time-honoured and unique ways. Opening with a fascinating exploration of historical and current views about the millennium, subsequent chapters reveal that the book of Revelation—from its opening messages to the churches, to its hymns of praise, to its closing descriptions of the new earth—is rich with parallels between Jesus’ work on the cross and His work in the millennial events. And this should not surprise us, Pastor Colquhoun adds, because “Revelation is Jesus’ story.”
“Whether you have previously studied this promised sequence of rescue, judgment and re-creation or are new to the subject of the millennium, this book invites you to a deeper understanding of the hope Jesus offers us all,” says Mr Brown of the new release from Signs Publishing.
The Cross and the Millennium is now available from Adventist bookshops in Australia and New Zealand or online.