Incompatibility of Calvinism and Fulfillment Theology [Introduction]

At the Shepherd’s Conference of 2007, John MacArthur gave a message about “Why Every Self-Respecting Calvinist Is a Premillennialist.” He followed that up with a series of messages in his church, titled “Why Every Calvinist Should Be a Premillennialist.”

I agree with MacArthur, because I think Calvinism is more compatible with Premillennialism than it is with Amillennialism. I intend to demonstrate that in this series.

I see a correlation between Fulfillment Theology and Corporate Election, which is an Arminian position. This series isn’t directly related to my upcoming commentary on Revelation, but it does involve prophecy, namely  Amillennialism.

The purpose of this study is to demonstrate the incompatibility of Calvinism and Fulfillment Theology, which of course is central to Amillennialism. I intend to show that Corporate Election is an extension of Fulfillment Theology, and why it’s, therefore, completely out of harmony with Calvinism.

Calvinist proponents of Fulfillment Theology do a wonderful job of explaining the relationship between Israel and the Church, as far as they go with it. However, they don’t carry it out to its logical and biblical end. They don’t see the bigger picture. They don’t see the relationship between Fulfillment Theology and the doctrine of election. I have no doubts that this limited vision is due to the Calvinistic lens of the theological glasses they wear. I believe that once a person takes those glasses off, the view then becomes much wider in scope.

I’ve discovered a sense of kinship with Calvinists who hold to Fulfillment Theology and Amillennialism. I love Sam Storms. I have his excellent book on the Amillennial position, titled “Kingdom Come.” I appreciate the way he writes, and I’ve learned from him. I also like Anthony Hoekema (with the Lord) and Kim Riddlebarger, what little I’ve read from them. I’ve benefited from the writings of these men as it relates to Israel and the Church, and the Kingdom of Christ.

It’s my prayer that they and other Calvinists will come into the full view of Fulfillment Theology, for there’s only one way to go with that, and that’s on the side of Arminianism.