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Ultimate Things: An Orthodox Christian Perspective on the End Times [Paperback]

Dennis Engleman , D. E. Engleman , T. Hopko
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
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Book Description

Dec 1 1996
An Eastern Orthodox Christian perspective on eschatology. Various Christian groups continue to scream that the end is near. Read a thoroughly Orthodox perspective on the End Times. Finally, a book that doesn't sensationalize these times, or rewrite traditional Christian teachings to fit in with the spirit of our age.

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1.0 out of 5 stars Ultimate Things Feb. 24 2004
By A Customer
I was disappointed after reading this book, but it was the first Orthodox resource I had come across that dealt with the end times. Sadly, it is so rooted in the ethos of the 20th century that the approach of the author was indistinguishable from fundamentalist Protestant writers. The insistence that THESE are the last days, and that THESE are the signs which prove it is symptomatic of the apocalyptic sectarian thinking which has characterized a small but vocal part of American Christianity over the past 150 years. While no Southern Baptist would identify the "restraining power" spoken of in 2 Thes. 2 with the holy martyr Tsar Nicholas II of Russia, the specificity of this identification is one which has been shunned by the Orthodox Church. It has been over 85 years since the Bolshevik Revolution. How long do we have to wait before deciding that this event, tragic as it was, was not the beginning of the end?
A much better book on the subject is "A Second Look at the Second Coming: Sorting Through the Speculations" by T. L. Frazier. It exposes the heretical teachings behind millenarianism, Zionism, the "rapture," dispensationalism, and numerology but it also presents a positive and hopeful outlook, calling us all to a joyful penitence in light of our Lord's glorious second coming.
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By zonaras
_Ultimate Things: An Orthodox Perspective on the End Times_ by Dennis Engleman is an outline of the rise of the Antichrist and the coming Apocalypse. This book is not what I would consider the most academic treatment of the topic, but it provides a rough outline and for the most part cites contemporary sources. It does have some references to "apocryphal" texts such as the Gospel of Nicodemus and the Apocalypse of Elijah. _Ultimate Things_ is written as a response to the pre-tribulation rapture propaganda so widespread in the Christian churches in America today. The question is what did the ancient Fathers of the Church understand and teach of the coming of the Antichrist? How does it differ from modern day interpretations? A key discrepancy is of the idea of suffering for Christ in the Church. The "rapture" will supposedly whisk away all true Christian believers and leave the world's unbelievers to suffer God's wrath with the rule of the Antichrist for three and a half years. This is contrasted to the traditional Orthodox teaching where the Church is severely persecuted under the Antichrist and Christ returns at the end of time and Judgement Day commences. Chiliasm is the ancient heresy of a literal thousand-year reign of Christ over the earth after his Second Coming. This heresy is dangerous because not only will the "rapture" not happen but the man who will reign posing as the Savior of the World will mimic Christ, creating a one world government with signs and wonders, "deceiving even the elect." St. Paul refers to the satanic force that is hurtling the world to Apocalypse as the "mystery of iniquity." Fr. Seraphim Rose is cited explaining that "mystery" in this sense is something that is not working out in the open, but exercising a covert, unseen influence. Read more ›
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5.0 out of 5 stars The Catacombs Christians at the End of Days. Oct. 13 2003
_Ultimate Things_ by Dennis E. Engleman is a book dealing with the End Times from the perspective of an Orthodox Christian. Basing his study on traditional prophetic writings of the Church Fathers as well as from Sacred Scripture, in particular the writings of the prophets and the Books of Daniel and Revelation, Engleman shows how modern events bear out the prescriptions described in prophecy and explains the End of Days in terms understandable to the Orthodox Christian. Engleman focuses on the "Last Christians", those Christians who will be living during the End Times. During the End Times the church will dwindle in size because of mass apostasy and the Christians will be identified in the catacombs, tiny islands bearing the traditional marks of oneness, holiness, catholicity, and apostolicity or Christ's true church. Engleman considers the Tsars to have been true Christian rulers, and interprets the Last Tsar, Tsar Nicholas II, as "the one who restrains the mystery of lawlessness" from 2 Thessalonians. For Engleman and for Orthodox Christians, Moscow represents the "Third Rome", and the rise of the communist tyranny in Russia is an extremely troublesome event heralding the imminent apocalypse, in which the armies of "Gog and Magog" shall do battle. With the fall of communism in Russia during the 1990s the possibility of a New World Order has been put forth, and such a thing promises to achieve the Kingdom of Antichrist upon the Earth. The return of the Jews to Israel, the Holy Land, is a second event with deep historic and apocalyptic consequences. While the Jews have rejected Christ (the Pharisees calling for his crucifixion before Pilate), it is written that in the last days they will be converted. Read more ›
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