The Reformers gave little time to millenial expectations. In fact, Calvin branded millenarians as 'ignorant fanatics'. There was a general amillenial consensus during the century of the Reformation, reflected in the notes to Revelation in the Geneva Bible and the WCFs silence on the millenium. Literal post- and pre- millenial views sprang up in the 17th century. Civil war led to openess to apocalyptic speculation and Puritan thought followed this trajectory. Jonathan Edwards saw the revivals as pre-cursors to the millenium, which he expected would come within 250 years. The French Revolution in this context was seen as the fall of Antichrist in France. This fledgling post-millenial eschatology was a Christian version of the 'idea of progress' spawned by the Enlightenment. It was a 'very this-wordly view of eschatology', but it drove foreign mission and social action, for example with Thomas Chalmers.
- eschatological beliefs among evangelicals have been deeply affected by intellectual assumptions, e.g. by the Enlightenment belief in progress (post-mill) and by Romanticism (pre-mill);
- eschatology has affected evangelical culture, e.g. post-mill producing active reform and socio-political efforts; pre-mill producing a quietist pessimism regarding society, but driving evangelism; and amill producing (at least in their own eyes) realism.