Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Hyperpreterist VS Hyperpreterist

In the last few years, full preterists have been attempting to pivot the label of "hyperpreterist" onto others. The main object of this label transfer is a fellow who goes by the name "RiversOfEden" because he takes the prime premises of full preterism to consistent conclusions.  The prime premises of full preterism are as follows:
  1. All has been fulfilled
  2. Audience relevancy - application mainly to 1st century audience.
So, when RiversOfEden applies the prime premises in a consistent manner, he concludes that all has been fulfilled in the 1st century. That, there is no more salvific application to people beyond the 1st century besides a positive effect for people who live in a "Christian" manner.  For this, RiversOfEden has been a target by his fellow full preterists who label him a "hyperpreterist".


However all is not unified in the full preterist movement. There is a group of full preterists called "Covenant Creationists" who advocate the teachings of Tim Martin and Jeff Vaughn. Martin and Vaughn wrote a book in 2007-2009 called "Beyond Creation Science" wherein they advocate that the Bible doesn't really speak of the physical creation of planet earth and that the Flood was a localized event.  This caused a split within the full preterist movement as those views were considered "hyper" or beyond (which is the definition of hyper) the scope of full preterism.  Some history of the split can be read about here.

Former full preterist conference speaker, Sam Frost said of Covenant Creationists:

 “Um especially - and I don’t mean to bring this up and I don’t want to discuss it but the Beyond Creation Science stuff - um definitely goes further than - see I would call - in fact I have an article where I do refer to that and then the universalizing tendency, I refer to that as hyper - I call that hyperpreterism. I think a couple of years ago I started saying this stuff is going so far out into - I don’t know where anymore” (August 2009 on a podcast)

Another faction of full preterists loosely led by David Green also opposes Covenant Creationism.  Green wrote about the perspective:

"I don't see any hint in Genesis that "heaven and earth" there means "the covenant" or "Israel" or anything like that.  In light of the rest of the Bible, I certainly see foreshadows of covenantal things in Genesis 1.  But I see no reason to take it beyond foreshadow and say that the animals were actually gentile nations and that Adam was actually the Hebrews.  I think that's being a little too "creative" with the creation account." (link)
"There's something wrong with your approach guys. You are clearly rejecting plain and blunt statements of God's word and invalidating them by replacing them with something else that sounds really scholarly." (Green addressing CCists on Facebook)

Ironically Green himself has been labeled a "hyperpreterist" by his fellow full preterists because Green loosely advocates no more baptism and no more partaking of the Lord's Supper/Communion. (ref1, ref2)

The point is, one group of full preterists attempting to classify another group of full preterists as the "true" hyperpreterists is an exercise in redundancy. Hyper is not meant to be a pejorative. It simply means "beyond" and it is clear that one group of full preterists think another has gone "beyond" what would keep them from being classified as hyper.

Oddly enough Vaughn and RiversOfEden debated the topic of creation where Vaughn took the position that creation is more about the creation of covenant whereas RiversOfEden took the traditional Christian position that the creation account is mainly about the "geo-physical" creation of planet earth. (ref)  In the background of the debate is Green and some other fellow full preterists mocking the entire thing. (ref)

Will the real hyperpreterist please stand up? or sit down or something?


Anonymous said...

Hyper Preterist are an absolute cult. I wonder why some Christians fall to their convincing power. It seems they created a whole different kind of theology like the Gnostics, who deny the bodily resurrection.

I'm not sure of their motives, it might be they want to be a unique niche in Christianity that holds an exclusive truth that Christianity have missed since the time of Christ or their leaders just want to make a name for themselves.

Anonymous said...

I have argued with a HP friend of mine, who is a fan of Tim Martin, regarding the Genesis account and what he told me was puzzling and revealing in some ways. Regarding my classical interpretation of Genesis, my friend responded that I adopted my interpretation because of my assumptions. My favorite friend also claimed that he interprets Genesis as poetry as he would for Psalms or Song of Solomon. I think what underlies the CC argument are the wrong set of assumptions regarding their exegesis of creation accounts. However, I suppose that CCism is consistent with the HP hermeneutic. This article gives evidence how disunited the HP movement is and how it seems that several leaders compete with each other for influence and followers in the movement. The HP-ists see themselves in a "reformation" of sorts regarding eschatology. My own observation is that since many have left Dispensationalism, they have not only denounced it but have also over-reacted to it, by going into the "dark-side".
- Julius