Communist Eschatology: A Christian Philosophical Analysis of the Post-Capitalistic Views of Marx, Engels and Lenin – Part 1

The Christian theologian, then, will use only the Bible in his eschatological research, and the non-Christian philosophical eschatologist will totally disregard the Bible in his research. But the Christian philosophical eschatologist will avoid both of these two extremes. From a careful study of the past and of the present state of the universe and of man's culture, he will attempt to understand their future tendencies-in a Christian Biblical perspective.12

Philosophical eschatology, then, attempts to give a scientific account of the future of the universe as a whole (that is, of nature and culture in their entirety) through a scientific examination thereof here and now.

Communists too have a philosophical eschatology. And although communist eschatology has its roots in the distant past (in the dialectical laws which communists believe govern the coming into being and passing away of all things)13-even as Christian eschatology too rests in the distant past14-communist eschatology as such starts to unfold in its full implications particularly after the principial destruction of capitalism by a successful communist revolution-even as Christian eschatology as such starts to unfold in its full implications particularly after the principial destruction of sin by the life and death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.15

By communist eschatology, then, we mean particularly the communist view of the process of communism's progressive conquest of the whole world after the advent of the proletarian revolution, even as by Christian eschatology we mean particularly the Christian view of the process of Christ's progressive conquest of the whole world after the advent of Christ's resurrection.16

In this dissertation, however, we shall not attempt to give a detailed Christian eschatology. For our subject is an analysis of communisi eschatology, not of Christian eschatology. And although we should attempt to give a Christian philosophical analysis of communist eschatology (which will necessarily involve the use of some Christian eschatology), the provision of an exhaustive Christian eschatology as such is not our present purpose.17 (Cf., however, our forthcoming book, Come, Lord Jesus!).

Restricting our field to communist eschatology, then, we must immediately distinguish between communist tactics, communist strategy, and communist goals.

By communist tactics, we mean those day by day activities whereby communist strategy to extend their influence (both in non-communist and in socialist countries) by means of press campaigns, exploitation of sports, trade, strikes, etc., to gain a small advance (or even to deliberately lose a little ground in order to confuse a noncommunist enemy).18

By communist strategy, we mean those long-term plans to gain an important objective not easily' reachable, such as the objective of neutralizing a hostile anti-communist government or engineering a communist takeover of a non-communist state, by means of a whole series of tactics subordinate thereto.

Communist tactics are not to be discussed in this present dissertation,'9 and, by and large, neither is communist strategy. For here we are largely to be engaged exclusively with communist goals-the ultimate eschatological aims of communists, to be implemented especially after they conquer the world, should they so succeed. Here we are going to examine the eschatological "whither" rather than the sacramental "how" or the pragmatical "whereby."

Yet we shall need to discuss how communists, presently in control of only some countries, plan to achieve world communism everywhere. We shall need to understand how they plan to walk down what Khrushchev calls The Road to Communism20 in a specific country, once they have succeeded in taking over that country in a socialistic revolution. Hence we shall need to understand the general eschatological direction which socialist states believe must be taken in the entire post-capitalistic period subsequent to their takeover of a particular country.

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