The Millennium:
Looking Back & Ahead

This promises to be a unique and special New Year's celebration. Technically, the current millennium ends December 31st, 2000. However, it has become generally accepted that it ends now--at the last of the "19xx time markers." There could be no better time to take a long look back and peek ahead to the future.

As late 20th-century observers, it seems impossible for us to empathetically--or even objectively--assess the whole millennium and try to put ourselves, as it were, in another century. We can only catch the barest of glimpses, especially the farther back we go to the turn of the First Millennium, A.D. It is a valuable exercise, however, and our special section called the First Things Millennial Series, does just that. And when we look ahead to a new millennium we try to learn from history's lessons and keep perspective. But is there more reason to hope or to despair?

The very timetable the world finds itself on today--our Western calendar--turns on the events of Jesus Christ's advent to earth. The reference "A.D." (from the Latin anno domini or "in the year of Our Lord") witnesses to the split in time attributed to this Man who claimed deity. Although some would say that this timekeeping standard held sway because the colonial Euro-Christian forces of the millennium foisted a construct upon the world, there is no denying the power of Jesus' life even upon the millennium that fell long after his death and resurrection. Therefore, we discuss not only influential figures of the Second Millennium itself, but also highlight Christ, the One who lives on. We also look ahead into the subject of His second coming and how the Church universal may make Him known in the Third Millennium, A.D.

—Leadership University Editor/Webmaster, Byron Barlowe

A Millennial Symposium: What Can We Reasonably Hope For?
First Things
The editors at First Things Journal write, "In the last year we published a millennium series of articles remembering, century by century, where we have been. Now we ask a group of notable thinkers, all of whom are familiar to our readers, what they expect of the future. Writers were free to choose their own topics, and we trust our readers will agree that the result is a suggestive, and frequently provocative, contribution to the right ordering of expectations, hopes, and fears for the century and millennium now upon us."

Beyond Blind Faith
Paul Little
What do you think of when you hear the word "Christmas"? Frantic shopping? The millennium appears, the century ends, the annual calendar comes off the wall, all in time with the birth of the millennium's most influential Person, Jesus Christ. The author begins, "It is impossible for us to know conclusively whether God exists and what He is like unless He takes the initiative and reveals Himself."

Finding Your Constant in the New Millennium
Every Student's Choice
No matter what happens in the world or in our own individual lives, is there a place to turn for stability? Can we look toward the future with hope, regardless of life's and the world's circumstances?

Living in the New Dark Ages
Lou Whitworth
A review of Charles Colson's important book, Against the Night: Living in the New Dark Ages. Colson argues that "new barbarians" are destroying our culture with individualism, relativism, and the new tolerance.

The Coming Age of Cathedrals
John J. Reilly
Like the medieval citizens who anticipated the year 1000, we come to face a new millennium with apocalyptic expectations. Will society evolve into another "cathedral age" or will it decline into an era of increasing technological barbarism?

Evangelicals and Catholics Together: The Christian Mission in the Third Millennium
First Things
An attempt to come together on points of agreement between these divisions of the Christian faith, while keeping clear the differences, ECT fostered much controversy, especially in evangelical circles. Judge the merits and problems for yourself.

The Gift of Salvation
First Things
Text of the follow-up statement to the controversial document Evangelicals and Catholics Together: The Christian Mission in the Third Millennium." This is an attempt to forge a clearer statement on the definition of such key doctrines as "salvation" and "justification."

Special Section: The Millennial Series from First Things Journal

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