Critical Review by:

Walt Hibbard, Founder & Former Owner, Great Christian Books, Inc

Original Signer, 9.5 Thesis of the Next Reformation

 [Review of Beyond Creation Science, 2nd edition, 2005]

    "Many preterists have come to assume that the acceptance of the traditional understanding of the extent of the Flood of Noah’s day requires a global-encompassing deluge that covered every continent and rose to the highest mountains of the world. This view teaches that every human being and land animal on the face of the earth was wiped out, and that only Noah’s family of eight people survived that monumental catastrophe.

    Timothy P. Martin, coming from a dispensational background and embracing of the popular Creation Science movement, has found through diligent study that there is much more involved in studying this doctrine than a mere “surface reading” of the texts of Genesis. There is an urgent need to examine the language to determine how key words are used elsewhere in the Bible. This has brought Mr. Martin to the conclusion that the Genesis account is describing a great Flood which was regional but not worldwide.

     He views the preterist movement as a good working out of the grammatico-historical hermeneutic in passages such as our Lord’s Olivet Discourse, II Peter 3, and the Book of Revelation.  However, he has been disappointed to find that many preterists still cling to interpretative ideas in other passages that are inconsistent with the careful and studied work that they have done in the prophetic areas. Mr. Martin believes that the early chapters in Genesis need to be re-studied with the same care as the prophetic material.

     I consider this new book, which Mr. Martin began to write prior to 2001, to be an important and eye-opening study that preterists need to examine carefully.  The Creation Science people are already quite happy with their hyper-literal system and this prevents many of them from embracing preterism; they are consistent!  But preterists who accept the global flood are betraying the hermeneutic principles that brought them initially into the preterist movement; namely, recognizing the covenantal manner in which God deals with his people, choosing them out of the great masses of worldwide humanity.

     This brief review of Timothy P. Martin’s book is intended to whet the appetite of Christians, especially preterists, to take a closer look at what many, including this reviewer, believed was the only acceptable interpretation of the early chapters of the Book of Genesis.  Compare the language of Genesis with the language of the Olivet Discourse, 2 Peter 3 and the Book of Revelation, and then strive for a more consistent, and thereby, a more accurate understanding of those early historical accounts.  And be sure to keep in mind that it is always wise to constantly be taking a closer look at those time-honored conclusions of traditional Christianity, since a true and biblical understanding has nothing to fear from honest exegetical investigation!"

Available online at the PreteristViewpoint.  



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