"... I think that eschatological positions have had very little to do with the cultural pessimism or optimism of their proponents. Many of the most politically active Christians in the US have been premillennialists (Jerry Falwell, Pat Robertson) or amillennialists (James Skillen, APJ), contrary to the postmillennialist claim that these positions foster cultural irrelevance and impotence. For many Christians, biblical admonitions to seek justice in society are sufficient reason to become culturally and politically active, and these are far more weighty than the supposed implications of any eschatological view."
With much respect, I disagree. And in response, I offer an analogy from Benjamin Zander: The Transformative Power of Classical Music:
Dr Frame has given us a list of names, but these dear brethren are exceptional people whose legacies have not had the eschatological staying power to sustain any political and cultural activity for more than the short term despite their great efforts. An optimistic expectation is air in the tires of obedience to the "Biblical admonitions to seek justice". Without it, we are constantly working within a contradictory theology, merely staving off inevitable defeat; forestalling a failed end.
To paraphrase Zander: How would you walk? How would you talk? How would you be if you thought that every nation will end up being baptized and discipled? That Christ's Church will triumph? That the earth WILL be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the Lord as the waters cover the sea? You see, these are totally different worlds. Eschatology does matter. Eschatology does make a difference.