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Related to chiliasm: chiliasts


see millenniummillennium
[Lat.,=1,000 years], the period of 1,000 years in which, according to some schools of Christian eschatology, Christ will reign again gloriously on earth. Belief in the millennium, based on Rev. 20, has recurred in Christianity since the earliest times.
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a belief that Jesus Christ will reign on earth for one thousand years. See MILLENARIANISM AND MILLENNIAL MOVEMENTS.



(also millenarianism), a religious doctrine according to which the end of the world will be preceded by a thousand-year “kingdom of God” on earth. Chiliastic ideas expressed in a peculiar form the hopes of the oppressed strata of society for an end to social injustice not in the kingdom of heaven, but on earth.

Chiliasm originated in the Judaic doctrine of the Messiah, and it was further elaborated by the early Christians. Chiliastic motifs are vividly expressed in the Apocalypse—the earliest of the Christian literary works that have been preserved. In the second century A.D., chiliasm gained many adherents in the Roman provinces of Asia Minor. After Christianity became the state religion of the Roman Empire in the fourth century, chiliasts were cruelly persecuted as heretics by the established Christian Church, which viewed chiliasm as an ideology that was hostile to the existing world order and that minimized the church’s “salvational” role.

Chiliasm gained renewed currency in Europe during the Middle Ages, when it was incorporated in many heretical doctrines (such as those taught by the Apostolici) that expressed the antifeudal attitudes of the peasant and plebeian masses. The chiliasts usually preached a gospel of passive social protest. It was only at times of wide-ranging popular movements that chiliasm took on a more active character, advocating the establishment of the “kingdom of God” on earth by force of arms—a course favored, for example, by the Taborites, the Anabaptists of the Münster Commune, and the Fifth Monarchy Men during the English bourgeois revolution of the 17th century. Chiliastic views can subsequently be observed among the Adventists, Jehovah’s Witnesses, and other sects that reflect the ideology and psychology of the petite bourgeoisie.


References in periodicals archive ?
His is, in other words, a chiliasm without divine violence.
Now, it is questionable whether there are actual examples of this kind of idolatry in the theological tradition, which, unlike the concrete chiliasm of the first kind of eschatological idolatry, would take the form of a spiritualized gnosticism.
105) The cult-following of Subcommandante Marcos and the global excitement aroused by the Zapatistas are a better known reminder of the peasant dimension to anti-capitalist chiliasm.
37) This understanding of time and history is post-millenary and occasionally reflects a crass, but mostly subtle, chiliasm.
In addition, all of the authors avoid, not surprisingly, any hint of chiliasm tainting their tex t.
Reformed commentators mingled elements of both approaches: an unwillingness to read the Apocalypse as a precise timetable and a traditional antipathy to chiliasm were held in tension by their desire to see descriptions of the Antichrist fulfilled in the papacy, or at least in the superstition and idolatry of papal religion.
This does not mean that `all' revolutionary movements are millenarian in the strict sense or -- which is even worse -- that they are connected to a primitive type of chiliasm.
With Seghers, however, as Weinzierl has so illuminatingly shown, the faith echoes not just the general chiliasm of Marxist thought but the very language of holy writ.
8) Already Kurikka had acquired a reputation for chiliasm, a characteristic soon to become obvious both in Australia and Canada.
As Norman Cohn points out in his study of medieval chiliasm, millenarian movements, inspired by the Johannine text, sprung up periodically in various parts of Europe according to the same pattern.
5) That Eusebius should find something in Papias' work not to his liking is not at all improbable, given his estimate of Papias' chiliasm, and his intelligence (HE 3.
Unlike Norman Cohn in The Pursuit of the Millennium (1957), who interpreted medieval and early-modern chiliasm as largely neglected early warnings about Nazi and communist fanaticism, Hill reads seventeenth-century religious radicalism as positive anticipations of modern popular revolutions, effectively challenging the modern state even in its relative infancy.