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2 (2005) 147-161] DOl: 10-1177/0966736905053242

THE BLESSING OF HOPE: THE THEOLOGY OF HOPE AND THE FULL GOSPEL OF LIFE*

Jiirgen Moltmann

ABSTRACT From the perspective of the author's own theology of hope, this article offers an affirmation and a constructive critical engagement of the 'Full Gospel' theology of Korean pastor, David Yonggi Cho. After acknowledgement of certain commonalities in the originating contexts of hoth Cho's and the author's respective theological perspectives, particular points of agreement and suggestions for fiarther expansion and development are presented and elaborated with a view toward a 'Full Gospel ofthe Advent of Christ'.

It was with very great pleasure that I accepted the invitation to the 2004 Young San International Theological Symposium. This year has a special importance, not just for Revd Dr Yonggi Cho and the Yoido Full Gospel Church, but for me as well: 40 years ago my Theology of Hope was first published and evoked a world-wide echo. What fills me with gratitude is not the book's success but the fact that so many congregations and

* Jurgen Moltmann (DTh, University of Gottingen), world-renowned theologian from the University of Tubingen, returns as our dialogue partner in this issue (cf. JPT A and 9) with a paper originally delivered in Seoul, Korea at the Young San Intemational Theological Symposium held 3-4 June, 2004 on the campus of Yooida Full Gospel Church, pastored by David Yonggi Cho. The paper has been translated from the original German by Margaret Kohl. Moltmann here offers a fresh, fHendly, and fruitflil interface between his celebrated systematic theology of hope and the hope-filled practical theology of Pastor Yonggi Cho. One of the respondents at the symposium, Korean theologian Ki Seong Lee of Hansei University, has contributed the response that follows.
© SAGE Publications (London, Thousand Oaks, CA and New Delhi), 2005.

Yet there I was given a Bible and read first the psalms of lament in the Old Testament. cold and hopeless prisoner-of-war camp. He developed tuberculosis. to go to meet the coming Christ. So in this lecture I shall take him seriously as a Christian theologian and shall enter into his 'Full Gospel Theology'. When he was 17 years old. I stood at tbe threshold of hell and for tbe first time cried out for God. I am ten years older than he. not.1 visited him together with my pupil Dr Park. During this experience. but our future in God is one. Pastor Cho deserves to be taken seriously all over the world as an excellent Christian theologian. They gave expression to my own despair and intensified my search for God. which binds us all together.2 (2005) theologians have set out with me on the same pathway. my God. and over breakfast we had a long talk that lasted from 7 until 10 tbat morning. which is subject to the biblical gospel and which wishes to be tested against that. But first allow me a personal word. same parousia ofGod's kingdom. At the end ofthe war I was taken prisoner and found myself in a dark. as so many Western theologians have done. I first met Dr Cho in September 1995. In those nights 40. he read the Bible and found Jesus Christ as his personal saviour. in July 1943. but we are going to meet the one. secular family. tbe bomb tbat blew to pieces the friend who was standing beside me left me unscathed. I became a Christian and a . In tbis theological dialogue I came to know Dr Cho as a learned and profound theologian and an independent thinker. we discovered amazing similarities in our biographies and in our experiences of faith. I came from a post-Christian. Yonggi Cho came from a non-Christian. We come from different traditions and live in different cultures. why have you forsaken me?'—I knew that in my God-forsakenness Jesus bad found me. and when I came to Jesus' death cry—'My God. and. For some incomprehensible reason. like Harvey Cox. an attack that destroyed my hometown of Hamburg in a firestorm. However.1 lay under the bail of bombs dropped by the British Air Force.000 men. Buddhist family. In tbat night. I became a seeker after God. I then read Mark's Gospel. Our origins are very different. and this illness brought him to the threshold of death. Yonggi Cho fell ill.148 Journal of Pentecostal Theology 13. as belonging to the sociology of religion. with mass death all around me. and this church as a Christian churcb. No. When I was 17 years old. talking about a 'Christian shamanism'. viewing his message and its influence in the church and among the Korean people merely from outside. In ourfirstconversation in 1995. Jong-Wha. women and children died. it was another two years before I found him.

Moreover.'* It is the experience of an active hope that transforms life and in anticipation reaches out into the future of Christ. 1997). 3. the theology of hope and the Pentecostal movement have a common spiritual root as well. Valley Forge. 1973).^ For Blumhardt. The Seven Theological Foundations ofthe Full Gospel The Threefold Blessing 1.MOLTMANN The Blessing of Hope 149 Christian theologian. . in this lecture I shall follow his texts. Because I take Dr Cho seriously as a theologian. The movement continued in the prophetic and healing activity of his son. 1972. among American Pentecostal theologians we find more and more followers of the forward-looking and proactive hope of Christopher Blumhardt. London: SCM Press. Barth. pp. See J. This is to be found in the German revival movement that is linked with the name ofthe Blumhardts. 'healing and hoping' belonged together in just the same way as 'praying and watching'—'watching' for the coming of Christ. 'Wrestling with God' in The Source of Life: The Holy Spirit and the Theology of Life (trans.-' Christopher Blumhardt became the spiritual father both ofthe dialectical theology of Karl Barth and Eduard Thurneysen. I understood that I would not have been searching for God if God had not already found me. near Tubingen. as these were sent to me: 1. and I did not die of despondency. Kohl. Today. I survived the three years as a prisoner of war in the strength ofthe hope to which I had been bom again through Christ. P. Protestant Theology in the Nineteenth Century (ET. 1-9. This revival movement began with a healing and an exorcism which the father. M. Althouse. 2. and 'hastening to meet' Christ in his coming.' Pastor Cho began his mission in the HAN ofthe Korean people after the Korean War. father and son. Christopher Blumhardt. Minneapolis: Fortress Press. 1922). Vater undSohn—und weiter! (Zurich: Rotaptfel Verlag. I began my life in Christ in the HAN ofthe Second World War and in the ruins of post-war Germany. experienced in a little village in the Black Forest. 4. Ragaz. PA: Judson Press. with a Foreword by Jurgen Moltmann (London and New York: T&T Clark. 2003). 2. in Bad Boll. like so many of my comrades. Karl Barth called Blumhardt a first 'theologian of hope' and as a young man was deeply influenced by him. (also in Korean). Der Kampfum das Reich Gottes in Blumhardt. and of the religious-social movement of Leonhard Ragaz and Hermann Kutter in Switzerland. Johann Christopher Blumhardt. L. Spirit ofthe Last Days: Pentecostal Eschatology in Conversation with Jurgen Moltmann. Moltmann. See K.

The living energies of the Holy Spirit (charismata) are sent by the risen. 2. The fullness of the gospel is greater than our limited understanding.5). idem. The Story of the Fivefold Gospelfor Modern People (Seoul: Malssuma. 6. 3. Fivefold Gospel and Threefold Blessing (Seoul: Youngsan Publishing. Belief in 'the Cross of Calvary' and belief in 'the Fullness of the Holy Spirit' are both grounded in the resurrection of the crucified Christ into the coming kingdom of God. . 4. and that changes us and this world. 5. And we experience too not only that God is our hope. If we are to comprehend the Full Gospel of Life we must stress the central significance of the risen Christ. supplement them and develop them further.150 3. The first effect of Christ's resurrection in men and women is the rebirth to a living hope (1 Peter 1. and he expects something from us. 1983). That is 'the Gospel of the Advent'. living and present Christ into the community of his people and into the world.3). They are the living energies 'of the future world' (Heb. I have four points that I will develop: 1. and which we experience in faith and in the community of Christ. 4. I shall make some suggestions as to how the Full Gospel of Life can be comprehensively presented—the gospel which Pastor Cho serves in his mission. he waits for us. In this hope we come alive and see before us the coming glory of Ciod. Journal of Pentecostal Theology 13. we need an Advent eschatology and should get away from dispensationalist eschatology. at home. and throughout the world. I am speaking out of my own experiences of the theology of hope and should like to make my own modest contribution to an understanding of the Full Gospel. What does this future look like? And what 'world' awaits us? So as better to understand Christ's presence in history and in order to open ourselves more fully for the charismatic experiences of the Holy Spirit. 1998). but that we are God's hope as well in this world: God hopes for us. 'Jesus is coming'. David Yonggi Cho.2 (2005) The Fivefold Gospel The Gospel of the Advent 5 I shall take up his ideas affirmatively and. where I can.

And God the Father raised his dead Son into etemal life through the divine power of the Holy Spirit. and sends the living energies of the Holy Spirit into the world. you will be saved' (Rom. God makes him the Lord and Saviour of the world and manifests himself as 'the Father of Jesus Christ'. as a lifecreating and healing power. and to the disciples who had fled to Galilee. Kohl. 'If Christ has not been raised. dies the death of the cross. Jesus was crucified publicly by the Romans. but the risen Jesus appeared only to the women at his tomb in Jerusalem. Why is Christ's resurrection so central for Christian faith? It is because in the resurrection. as a series of events. The Resurrection of Christ—the Foundation and Power of Christian Hope God's raising of the crucified Christ from the dead is the foundation of the Christian hope. and as the beginning of etemal life. writes the apostle Paul (1 Cor. Moltmann. Luke relates the history of Christ consecutively. we should know nothing about Jesus. 10.14). San Francisco: Harper & Row. Through the resurrection of Jesus. then our preaching is in vain and your faith is in vain'. For this reason I would suggest including in the Seven Theological Foundations of the Full Gospel an article about Christ's resurrection.*" Without the resurrection. Easter^—after 40 days. faith in God and the acknowledgment of Christ coincide.9). after 3 days. There can be no good Pentecostal theology that is not grounded in Easter resurrection theology. as the divine and inexhaustible origin of the 'Full Gospel'. In the community of Christ. But this is a single mystery of salvation: Christ comes into this world. Pentecost. We can make this clear to ourselves if we look more closely at the resurrection faith of the women and Jesus' disciples. Yet these appearances transformed them totally: they retumed to Jerusalem. and we trust Jesus for God's sake. We believe in God for Jesus' sake. even 6. 1990). and should have no hope for God's future. is raised and installed to be the Lord of the divine rule. M. (also in Korean). Anyone who separates faith in God from faith in Christ understands neither God nor Christ. believers experience God's Spirit as 'the power of the resurrection'. the Ascension—after 50 days. 15. J. .MOLTMANN The Blessing of Hope 151 1. The Way of Jesus Christ: Christology in Messianic Dimensions (trans. and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead. 'If you confess with your lips that Jesus is Lord. with symbolic time intervals: Good Friday—then. Let us cast a glance at this origin of the Christian faith.

but this return of the disciples and their proclamation in Jerusalem of Christ's resurrection is proof of the empty tomb. For them. says the risen Christ to the disciples. In the appearances ofthe risen Jesus they had evidently found a faith that overcomes the world. So it is not correct to call Christ's resurrection just 'a historical fact'. The whole creation exults in Christ's resurrection The Orthodox Easter icon shows this in picture form: the Christ who has risen from his tomb pulls Adam and Eve with both hands out ofthe world . To perceive the miracle of Christ's resurrection does not mean taking note of a historical fact about something that happened 2000 years ago and saying.152 Journal of Pentecostal Theology 13. for it could. for they could not have said a word about his resurrection if people had been able to point them to Jesus' body. It is a historical event that has a confronting impact on the present. according to John 20. affecting Christ alone. the recognition of Christ and experience ofthe Spirit still belong indissolubly together. Christ was raised from the dead in order to be the first fruits of those who have fallen asleep and the leader of eternal life (1 Cor. opening up the eschatological history of eternal life in the midst of this world of death and inviting every human being to this divine future. To recognize the risen Christ and to be bom again to eternal life from the Spirit ofthe resurrection are one.22. His resurrection from the dead has from the very beginning a universal and cosmic relevance. and they were no longer afraid of anything at all. have been empty for a different reason. That is still the case today.20).2 (2005) though there they were bound to expect the same persecution and the same death as that of their Master. The Easter liturgy ofthe Orthodox Church puts it very well: Everything now is filled with light. still in the tomb. Jesus' empty tomb is not a proof of his resurrection. Nor must we understand Christ's resurrection as merely an individual event. 'Receive the Holy Spirit'. The women and the disciples to whom the risen Christ 'appeared' in the radiance of God's glory were seized by the Spirit of the resurrection. 'Is that so?' or 'OK!' It means being seized by the power ofthe resurrection and entering into a life with Christ. Heaven and earth and the realm ofthe dead. Even if we no longer see the risen Christ but now draw our faith from the Word ofthe gospel. if that means viewing history as something past and gone. 15. Easter and Pentecost coincided in the moment (kairos) when they encountered Christ. after all.

Christ not only died his own death. 5) in order not only to redeem our souls. I should like to contribute two further aspects here: (1) The crucified Christ also became the divine brother of all the men and women who have to exist in the shadow of the cross. cf. we also perceive why Christ died and became alive once more. Who heals all your diseases.^ By entering into death on the cross. But thanks be to God who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ' (1 Cor. Moltmann. the homeless and the imprisoned'—in Korean. R. Bowden. (also in Korean). 14. and—together with Adam and Eve—all humanity and the whole groaning creation. where is your victory?. 15. Jesus' first glance fell on the sick among his people. the thirsty. Dr Cho. Who redeems your life from destruction.3-4: Who forgives all your iniquity. No. He healed them not through his superior power but through his suffering: 'And through his wounds we are healed'(Isa. Wilson and J. (2) Christ 'carried our sicknesses' {Foundations.55. A. According to Matthew 25. in order to bring us the eternal salvation of fellowship with God. that is to say in the night of God-forsakenness. The Crucified God: The Cross of Christ as the Foundation and Criticism of Christian Theology (trans. We already find this threefold redemption in Ps.. .17).. and he healed them. 57). that means 'the hungry. 103.Mt. In his resurrection he overcomes this eternal death and throws open the gates of hell. Paul exults: 'Death is swallowed up in victory. That is what the doctrine about Christ's descent into hell is saying. According to Rom. his purpose is to be 7. J. Christ brings fellowship with God into this darkness and saves those who were lost. he also died the absolute and universal death—eternal death. the sick. we perceive the saving significance of his suffering and death on the cross. (2) In the light of his resurrection. 1974). Quoting the first Christian Easter hymn. 53. That is true. New York: Harper & Row. the Minjung.MOLTMANN The Blessing of Hope 153 of death into the transfigured world of eternal life. 8. O Death where is your sting? O Hell. sees here a double meaning: (1) Christ shed his blood and died for our sins. In the light of Christ's raising.5. According to the Gospel of Mark.9. splendidly. but so as to heal our bodies toofi-omthe curse of sickness and to bless us..

It is the only hope we know that has a relation to those who are past and promises them a future. a shared. With that. the wall dividing the living and the dead has been broken down. ancestors and descendents are seen in the light of the resurrection of the dead in which they share. they are 'present'. The reason is that from the Christian viewpoint. Born Again to a Living Hope Pentecostal theology has rightly put 'rebirth' at the centre ofthe Christian faith. Those who in Christ remember their ancestors. Zurich (30 June. 9. 141-44. Western sense. 2. consoling community of hope. London: SCM Press. but to their future. (also in Korean). .^ The community with Christ in faith is therefore not merely a community ofthe living. 1992). a hope which makes us wholly and entirely living. Kohl. J. The Spirit of Life: A Universal Affirmation (trans. to which they are closer than their descendents because of their age.3 brings out the connection very clearly: 'Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! Through his great mercy we have been bom anew to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead. Moltmann. Our community with our ancestors is a wonderflil.' Since 8. In the hope of resurrection. beyond time and beyond death. which is to be expected. for it is in the personal rebirth to eternal life that we experience the first effect of Christ's resurrection from the dead. Orientierung 12. Christ 'descended into the realm ofthe dead' (as the modem German version ofthe Apostles' Creed puts it) in order to fill that realm too with the light of his resurrection into eternal life. and are embraced together by a hope for 'the life ofthe fliture world'. eternal presence ofthe living and the dead already comes into being here and now. which in Asia is still so much alive. (also in Korean).154 Journal of Pentecostal Theology 13. which cannot be brought back. The prospect ofthe resurrection ofthe dead is the new Christian light that falls on the age-old reverence for ancestors. J. 2003). now. In Christ. as they are in ancient Asian thinking. do not look to their past. the night of death becomes the stillness heralding the dawn of the resurrection. Christ's resurrection opens up hope for the future not only for the living but also for the dead.'Ahnenverehrung und Auferstehunghoffnung'. M. ancestors are no longer viewed in the light of a mythical origin. 1 Peter 1. pp. In Christ the dead are not 'dead' in the modem.2 (2005) 'Lord both ofthe dead and ofthe living'. 67th year. Moltmann. it is also a community ofthe dead.' It is a birth of hope in us.

12. Sins that bind us to the past are forgiven. what the Gospel of John describes as the struggle between 'life' and 'death'. 1. for the hope which awakens in us is a little response to the great hope which God has for us. personally and in community with others. and when he thought of world history. We awake out of despondency and indifference. Bauer. and the Spirit of Christ is 'the power ofthe resurrection' and of eternal life. According to the language of the Bible. God's creative Spirit is also the Spirit of Christ.'" If we are seized by the power ofthe resurrection. 70-88. is not restricted only to themselves. and the time of the coming world. because we know that God has expectation for us. The Source of Life. God's children. In personal life they take concrete form as 'flesh' and 'spirit'. . as Hildegard of Bingen put it. salvation and eternal life. or 'life according to the flesh' and 'life according to the spirit'. Chapter 7: 'Life's New Spirituality'. Paul was an apocalyptist. 1971). An undreamed-of love for life lays hold of us. he thought in terms of those two different world-times. the conflict between this transitory world-time of sin. Leiblichkeit—das Ende aller Werke Gottes (Gutersloh: Gerd Mohn. See Moltmann. sickness and death. 'The Way to Destroy the Body'. and God's friends in the community ofthe Holy Spirit. the struggle between 'light' and 'darkness'—that is. God is our hope. Wherever this life-giving hope awakens in us. cold winter. which will be a time of righteousness and justice. in fellowship with Christ. 384.MOLTMANN The Blessing of Hope 155 the resurrection of Christ. The resurrection hope is universal and embraces the whole sighing and groaning creation. has been wrongly translated into English. We are 'like new-bom children' and encounter life with intense expectation. the conflicts begin as well: what Paul calls the struggle between 'spirit' and 'flesh'. 1954). p. Sicknesses that oppress and destroy life are healed. like the flowers and trees after a long. Scivias: Wisse die Wege (Salzburg: Otto Miiller Verlag.26-28). what is meant is not 'body' (soma) but'flesh'(^arx). With this hope 'the spring ofthe whole creation' begins. his sons and daughters. and we become God's hope for this earth.A. we begin to blossom and to be fruitful in love.'^ So we should not equate 'spirit' (pneuma) with soul (nous) either. Hildegard von Bingen. pp. 11. 'Life according to the 10." Dr Cho has described this struggle in the third of his propositions in The Blessing of Spiritual Well-being. I assume that his heading. K. What believers experience in their souls and bodies. We shall be what we are meant to be: God's image and appearance in the earth's community of creation (Gen.

but not all of them realize it. and the departing shadows of the night: 'The night is far gone. said Jan Amos Comenius. envy and hate determine human beings and whole human societies.156 Journal of Pentecostal Theology 13. There is a wisdom to help us in this struggle in personal life: when the sun rises.2 (2005) flesh' is life that has miscarried. In no case does the soul enjoy a higher position than the body. as Dr Cho has expounded.. . life in sin and godlessness. Pennsylvania. it is what Kierkegaard called the 'sickness unto death'. 'flesh' and 'spirit' mean the whole of life. quoted from Via Lucis. 13. With the coming of Christ into this world. covetousness. fear and hope. as well as person and community.. or in the human will. 'Life according to the spirit' is a life in grace. Every 13. In every case. for greed. because it furthers the coming of Christ and allows God's great day to shine out in the midst of the night of this world. the day is at hand. but in the new bearings given to the whole of life. hate and fear are powers that also dominate economics and politics: greed in capitalism. because they are ruled by 'life according to the flesh'. on the other hand. The struggle is carried on in personal life. is not to be found in the soul. The origin of sin is not to be found in the allegedly lower drives of the body. nor is the person more important than the community. soul and body. Yet what we personally contend with in the inner struggle between 'spirit' and 'flesh'. but can only seize the place of light when light gives way'. 'Darkness cannot resist the invasion of light.' (Rom. in the midst of the life that is false. and fear in security politics. This is the conflict between the light of the rising sun. hate and love.'-' 3. true life already begins here and now. has a universal and an End-time importance. The Powers of the Future World The Pentecostal movement deserves acclaim for having rediscovered the charismatic congregation on the biblical pattem. The origin of true life. But it is fought out in public life too. Life according to the spirit is 'life in love'. given to me in 1992 in Bethlehem. one should stop fighting the shadows of the night. Inscription on the Comenius-medal. a life which is completely ensouled by God's Spirit. Every Christian congregation is a charismatic congregation. hate in terrorism. but rather in the disorientation of the whole person: greed. life in the fellowship of Christ. Let us then cast off the works of darkness andputon the armour of light.12). but should turn to the light which drives the shadows away.

since for Paul the natural acts prompted by love are charismata too (cf. finally.17). I would suggest the eschatological interpretation. Chapter 9: 'The Charismatic Powers of Life'. then they are not just 'fire from heaven'. Spirit of Life.5). 'I will bless you. Charismata.4). and to the people of one's own time. prophecy and healings. miraculous phenomena.2-4 seems to indicate. Yet ever since Abraham. If we understand the charismata as 'powers ofthe future world'. and we shall open ourselves for the influence ofthe coming Christ. Paul therefore also calls the charismata 'services' {diakoniai). compared with the 14. 180-97. and this is the way Dr Cho describes them in The Threefold Blessing. 6. Moltmann. In powers ofthe future like this we already anticipate here and now what Christ will complete on his day. Streams of blessing flow out from blessed congregations into the world around. Charismata are gifts of God's grace and are always bound up with tasks for the spread of the gospel and the building up of the community of Christ's people.MOLTMANN The Blessing of Hope 157 believing Christian is a charismatic. In them the future of Christ becomes powerful in our own present time.''* If we understand the charismata as 'supematural gifts'. are special blessings from God. but the same Spirit' (1 Cor. 7. . so that you will be a blessing' (Gen. 12. as Acts 2. But this is very one-sided. and we think that what cannot be explained naturally has to be 'supematural'. pp. Even if our powers are small. such as speaking with tongues. 12. I shall restrict myself here to a single question: How are we to understand these powers and tasks theologically? There are two possibilities. This means that the charismatic congregation is always the diaconal congregation too. they are also the first daybreak colours heralding the dawn of God's coming day.2). people have always been blessed so that they can become a blessing for others. These powers are either 'fire from heaven' and 'supematural gifts'. but not many find their own personal task in the kingdom of God. Charismatic and diaconal congregations are blessed congregations. 1 Corinthians 12 and 13): to everyone as God has called him or her (1 Cor. then we look only at the unusual. Charismata are energies ofthe Holy Spirit: 'There are varieties of gifts. Here charismata are energies ofthe new creation ofthe world in righteousness and justice and peace. or they are 'the powers ofthe future world' (Heb.

2 (2005) forces exercised by the powerful in this world. The Latin word for this is Advent. However. and that fills us with an Advent-like expectation of God's coming. that God may be all in all' (1 Cor.22). a world in which there is enough for everyone. a world of an overflowing fullness of life.. then.23-28). The Gospel of Advent and Advent Eschatology God's raising of Christ from the dead is the origin of every Christian eschatology. interconnected transformation process: 'Christ first. economically and politically. I would therefore suggest that the apostle Paul's great resurrection chapter should be made the foundation for the proclamation ofthe Full Gospel of Advent. For he must reign until he has put all his enemies under his feet. (1) The dynamic of this eschatological process which transforms and transfigures everything (Phil. 15. then the Son himself will also be subjected to him who put all things under him. A final aspect: If the charismata we experience here and now—the gifts of grace and the forces of life—are already 'the powers of the future world'. what does this future world look like? In this case the future world is a charismatic world through and through: a world full ofthe divine Spirit. at his coming. not from the ongoing times of world history. The last enemy to be destroyed is death. a city of righteousness and justice. This transformation process brings everything into etemal life. then the end. those who belong to Christ. for 'in Christ they shall all be made alive' (15. When all things are subjected to him. Why should Christ 'come again' when. . he has not gone away. 4. when we sense his presence everywhere? The Greek wordparousia is used in the New Testament only for the coming of Christ. when he delivers the kingdom to God the Father after destroying every mle.158 Journal of Pentecostal Theology 13. 3. To be raised is for Paul a single. and for eschatological thinking. this is not a good way of looking at things. This world-wide horizon is therefore important for everything that we receive from God and do in his name. and power.21) proceeds from Christ. then they already have their effect on all this world's different sectors: personally and socially. culturally and ecologically. we are nevertheless on the side ofthe future and act in the name of God's coming kingdom. If charismata are powers ofthe fliture 'world'. a paradise of life. after all. (2) It is common practice to talk about Christ's 'Second Coming'.. Here I should like to make three comments. All this and more we already experience here and now in the blessings ofthe Spirit. authority.

148. but only with the temporal concept of advent. therefore. Der Kampfum das Reich Gottes in Blumhardt. Dispensationalism means that orders of world history are eschatologically orientated. Chronos is the time of transience. we expect him. He is in the process of coming. and the present turns into the past."^ If Jesus is in the process of coming. M. When Christ comes. to speak of' now already' and' not yet'. From the Church Fathers down to Karl Barth. I would. The future becomes the present. . Minneapolis: Fortress Press. and aeon means abiding present. Moltmann. (3) In considering the theological understanding of time. and it is a sister of death. people have often talked about the threefold coming of Christ: 'He came in the flesh—he comes in the Spirit—he will come in glory'. in the sense that in our hearts he is awaited. The Christ who has risen from the dead is not subject to time. Kohl. he is the Lord of time.MOLTMANN The Blessing of Hope 159 which is a dynamic word for 'future'. By 'advent' we mean what is coming to meet us.. Ifindit important to distinguish between 'future' and 'advent'.'^ Having said this. Everything that becomes. As Peter Althouse has shown. 16. as if all of a sudden. then every day he emerges out of his future into our present.. either. It is not useful. just as we speak of a 'coming' event. which is the Greek word for time. (also in Korean). The Coming of God: Christian Eschatology (trans. time is transformed into eternity. p. let us cast a glance at the eschatology of dispensationalism. So Christ's future is something we can continually have in front of our eyes and can daily expect. because in time what is not yet will one day no longer be. passes away. He is not sitting quietly somewhere in eternity. Christoph Blumhardt wrote in this connection: 'The Saviour is coming. t have developed Advent eschatology in detail in J. for what is going to emerge from the present. not a static one. The presence of eternity also transforms time: chronos becomes aeon. Consequently we cannot express the Christian hope for God's eternal kingdom with the temporal concept of chronos. In everything we encounter. suggest talking about 'Christ's future'. We use the term 'future' for what will be. not his 'Second Coming'. a future which is not just future but a present too. The best-known pattem is the scheme of the seven dispensations. 1996). Ragaz. waiting for some particular point in time when he will arrive. as it were—that is to say. . but was later adopted by certain Pentecostals. The future is a temporal form of chronos. A 'futurist eschatology' is the end of every eschatology. It goes back 15. this was not originally part of Pentecostal theology. So we must be aligned towards the future of Jesus Christ. time stands still.

21. the people of Israel will experience their fulfilments in the future. pp. this ends in the Egyptian captivity. 23-24. . so it is not originally Christian. pneumatology and eschatology are better related inwardly to each other than they are in the scheme of the seven ages of the world. Finally. The Last Judgment is not the last thing of all. Spirit of the Last Days.45). this pattern can easily lead to a separation of the Son from the Father. In the consummation. However.3: 'Eschatological Orders of Time in History'. 7) The kingdom of Christ. this will end with the coming of Christ. Here the dynamic proceeds from God and not from the progression of the times. The Coming of God.160 Journal of Pentecostal Theology 13. The early Pentecostal movement was apparently much influenced by the tripartite dispensationalism of the Wesleyan theologian John Fletcher. 5) The time of the Law. We must look forward to the Last Judgment and have no longer any need to be afraid of it. this ends with the building of the Tower of Babel. and must no longer allow it to stand as a threat. and of the Holy Spirit from the Son. The numbering in premillenial dispensationalism is as follows: 1) The time of innocence. §1. for he comes to bring victory over the powers of darkness—victory for the saving righteousness and justice of God. this ends with the rejection of Christ by the Jews. What comes last of all is the new creation of all things (Rev. and hence to the dissolution of the divine Trinity into historical progress. there is then the etemal kingdom of the triune God. which he himself proclaimed. 6) The time of grace. as the Judge. 141-46. See Althouse. it is penultimate—the last but one. The more distinctly we have before our eyes Jesus. That is the meaning of the Last 17. 4) The time of promise. pp. that righteousness and justice must first of all be made to prevail everywhere. Because the new creation can endure eternally only on the foundation of God's righteousness and justice. all human beings. 2) The time of conscience. and the age of the Son leads to the age of the Spirit. Another scheme derives from Joachim of Fiore and reckons with three periods of world history. also Moltmann. the better we can entrust ourselves. christology. In this scheme. the age (or dispensation) of the Father leads to the age of the Son.'^ Because many of the prophecies of the Old Testament have not yet been flilfilled. the gospel of Advent must turn the expectation of the Last Judgment into a message of joy.2 (2005) to a rabbinic transference of the seven days of creation to the seven ages of world history. 3) The time of human government. According to this scheme. and this whole world to his judgment. Cf. this ends with the Fall. the Son of man. III. this ends with the Flood.

My desire is to have preached this as far as the lowest circles of hell. and I will never be confounded. Jesus can judge but not condemn." For me. Briefe 7555-/P/7 (Neukirchen: Neukirchener Verlag. Reden. Will all human heings he redeemed in the end? We do not know. hut only as through fire'. 18. he will suffer loss. 153.MOLTMANN The Blessing of Hope 161 Judgment. Quoted in Ragaz. but it is the saving and fulfilling Yes of creation: 'Behold. 1978).. Judgment and new creation are the two sides ofthe eschatologieal transformation process that we expect. either today or in eternity. the sinner will he saved. as Paul says in 1 Cor. and we proclaim it as the goal ofthe Full Gospel ofthe Advent. It has above all a positive one. Harder. Christ's Judgment is a judgment according to works. Predigten. its aim in not merely to destroy but above all to save. The sins will he condemned. everything is God's. II. it will not merely dissolve but will above all flilfil. p. I make all things '^ For every individual. So we look forward to Christ's Judgment. Der Kampfum das Reich Gottes in Blumhardt. Christoph Blumhardt: Ansprachen. That is to say. and the dissolution ofthe world of evil. in order that the person 'will he saved': 'If any man's work is humed up. Jesus comes as the one who has borne the sins ofthe world. So Christoph Blumhardt wrote: Judgment does not have merely a negative meaning.13-15. p. 131. 19. Paul's ideas ofjudgment are in line with his teaching ahout justification. It is the annihilating Nothingness for all the powers that are contrary to God. hut he himself will he saved. hut we can hope that they will and pray that they will. that is the 'Full Gospel o f t h e Advent of Christ'. Quoted in J. 3. For myself.. I should like to close with Christoph Blumhard's 'confession of hope': There can be no question of God's giving up anything or anyone in the whole world. . The end has to be: Behold.