Skip to comments.Answering a “Replacement Theology” Critic
Posted on 12/07/2009 6:20:08 AM PST by topcat54
My primary problem with the Preterist view, Robert Heidler, a graduate of Dallas Theological Seminary writes, is that it is a blatant example of replacement theology. If you want to end a debate over eschatology when you cant make a cogent biblical case for your position, just charge your opponent with holding to replacement theology. What is replacement theology, sometimes called supersessionism? Heres a typical dispensational definition:
Replacement Theology: a theological perspective that teaches that the Jews have been rejected by God and are no longer Gods Chosen People. Those who hold to this view disavow any ethnic future for the Jewish people in connection with the biblical covenants, believing that their spiritual destiny is either to perish or become a part of the new religion that superseded Judaism (whether Christianity or Islam).
Replacement theology is dispensationalisms trump card in any debate over eschatology because it implies anti-semitism. Hal Lindsey attempted to pull this card from the bottom of the deck in his poorly researched book The Road to Holocaust. He wove an innovative tale implying that anyone who is not a dispensationalist carries the seeds of anti-semitism within his or her prophetic system. This would mean that every Christian prior to 1830 would have been theologically anti-semitic.
As Peter Leithart and I point our booklet The Legacy of Hatred Continues, its dispensationalists who hold to a form of replacement theology since they believe that Israel does not have any prophetic significance this side of the rapture! Prior to the rapture, in terms of dispensational logic, the Church has replaced Israel. This is unquestionably true since Gods prophetic plan for Israel has been postponed until the prophetic time clock starts ticking again at the beginning of Daniels 70th week which starts only after the Church is taken to heaven in the so-called rapture. Until then, God is dealing redemptively with the Church. Am I making this up? Consider the following by dispensationalist E. Schuyler English:
An intercalary [inserted into the calendar ] period of history, after Christs death and resurrection and the destruction of Jerusalem in A.D. 70, has intervened. This is the present age, the Church age. . . . During this time God has not been dealing with Israel nationally, for they have been blinded concerning Gods mercy in Christ. . . . However, God will again deal with Israel as a nation. This will be in Daniels seventieth week, a seven-year period yet to come.
According to Schuyler and every other dispensationalist, the Church has replaced Israel until the rapture. The unfulfilled promises made to Israel are not fulfilled until after the Church is taken off the earth. Thomas Ice, one of dispensationalisms popular writers, admits that the Church replaces Israel this side of the rapture: We dispensationalists believe that the church has superseded Israel during the current church age, but God has a future time in which He will restore national Israel as the institution for the administration of divine blessings to the world.
Its quite evident, therefore, that dispensationalists, using their own words, believe that prior to the rapture the Church has replaced Israel, and this replacement has been going on for nearly 2000 years. Israel will only get its preeminent position back for only 1000 years during the dispensationalists version of the millennium.
Dispensationalists will argue that its during the seven-year post-rapture period that the Jews return to their preeminent position. This cant be true, since dispensationalists teach that its during the second half of the seven year period that, according to Charles Ryrie, will undergo the worst bloodbath in Jewish history. John Walvoord follows a similar line of argument: Israel is destined to have a particular time of suffering which will eclipse any thing that it has known in the past. . . . [T]he people of Israel . . . are placing themselves within the vortex of this future whirlwind which will destroy the majority of those living in the land of Palestine. Arnold Fruchtenbaum states that during the Great Tribulation Israel will suffer tremendous persecution (Matthew 24:1528; Revelation 12:117). As a result of this persecution of the Jewish people, two-thirds are going to be killed.
During the time when Israel seems to be at peace with the world, she is really under the domination of the antichrist who will turn on her at the mid-point in the seven-year period. Israel waits more than 2000 years for the promises finally to be fulfilled, and before it happens, two-thirds of them are wiped out. Those who are charged with holding a replacement theology viewpoint believe in no inevitable future Jewish bloodbath.
In fact, postmillennialists believe that Jews will inevitably embrace Jesus as the Messiah this side of the Second Coming. The fulfillment of Zechariah 13:8 is a past event. It may have had its fulfillment in the events leading up to and including the destruction of Jerusalem in A.D. 70. Contrary to dispensationalisms interpretation of the Olivet Discourse, Jesus warned the Jewish nation for nearly forty years about the impending judgment (Matt. 3:7; 21:4246; 22:114; 24:1522). Those who believed Jesus words of warning were delivered from the wrath to come (1 Thess. 1:10). Those who continued to reject Jesus as the promised Messiah, even though they had been warned for a generation (Matt. 24:34), wrath has come upon them to the utmost (1 Thess. 2:16; cf. 1 Thess. 5:111; 2 Pet. 3:1013).
Before critics of replacement theology like Robert Heidler throw stones, they need to take a look at their own prophetic system and see its many lapses in history, biblical interpretation, theology and logic.
 Randall Price, Unholy War: America, Israel and Radical Islam (Eugene, OR: Harvest House, 2001), 412.
 Hal Lindsey, The Road to Holocaust (New York: Bantam Books, 1989). The address for Bantam Books is 666 Fifth Avenue, New York, New York.
 Gary DeMar and Peter J. Leithart, The Legacy of Hatred Continues: A Response to Hal Lindseys The Road to Holocaust (Powder Springs, GA: American Vision, 1989).
 E. Schuyler English, A Companion to the New Scofield Reference Bible (New York: Oxford University Press, 1972), 135.
 Thomas Ice, The Israel of God, The Thomas Ice Collection: www.raptureready.com/featured/TheIsraelOfGod.html#_edn3
 Charles C. Ryrie, The Best is Yet to Come (Chicago, IL: Moody Press, 1981), 86.
 John F. Walvoord, Israel in Prophecy (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 1962), 107, 113. Emphasis added.
 Arnold G. Fruchtenbaum, The Little Apocalypse of Zechariah, The End Times Controversy: The Second Coming Under Attack, eds. Tim LaHaye and Thomas Ice (Eugene, OR: Harvest House, 2003), 262.
"For these are the days of vengeance, that all things which are written may be fulfilled." (Luke 21:22)
Everytime I see these threads, I thank God I’m Eastern Orthodox.
I hear ya...Every time I see these threads, I thank God I'm a Bible Believing Dispensationalist...
We’ll know what happens at the end, WHEN it HAPPENS! in the meantime, we just have to focus on being READY. Regardless of our flawed theories and guesses as to when or how the end will come, we are called to live in anticipation!
There is simply no infallible way to know for sure ...
True believers have the Holy Spirit inside them.
Do not be be deceived by the fiery darts of Satan
Do not be lead astray, as men were during the time of the Judges.
“... every man did that which was right in his own eyes.” Judges 21:25
God's Word is true. His promises to Israel stand forever ... no matter how they come about. The church today has strayed far from the true Scriptures; and with the post modern ... pre-emergent movement occurring today ... it is far from the church of my youth.
How are the youth of today to KNOW and UNDERSTAND the SCRIPTURES when the church leaders are doing away with the TRUTH?
JMO. God help us in our day, in Jesus name, amen.
I may not grasp every thing that all the different eschatoloty groups believe but this statement seems odd to me with my limited knowledge of postmillennialism. Maybe I'm missing something. If the author defines Jews as an Biblical Ethnic group then I would see this as odd since most Postmillenialist that I know are calvinists and they don't see Jews as a Biblical ethnic group embraceing Jesus before the future second coming, assumeing they define the second comming as in the future.
On the other hand if the author defines Jews as one whose heart has been circumcised then I can agree with the author.
Romans 11:25I do not want you to be ignorant of this mystery, brothers, so that you may not be conceited: Israel has experienced a hardening in part until the full number of the Gentiles has come in. 26And so all Israel will be saved, as it is written:
"The deliverer will come from Zion; he will turn godlessness away from Jacob. 27And this is my covenant with them when I take away their sins."
28As far as the gospel is concerned, they are enemies on your account; but as far as election is concerned, they are loved on account of the patriarchs, 29for God's gifts and his call are irrevocable. 30Just as you who were at one time disobedient to God have now received mercy as a result of their disobedience, 31so they too have now become disobedient in order that they too may now[h] receive mercy as a result of God's mercy to you. 32For God has bound all men over to disobedience so that he may have mercy on them all.
Everybody seems to want to talk "REPLACEMENT", as if Israel has been cast aside, and now "Christians" are Gods chosen ones or favorites. Its not about replacement, its about bringing gentiles in. Christianity IS NOT a refudiation of Judaism, it is a completion. Christ did not come to start a new religion, he came to finish, to complete what he started in the beginning.
What is done is the need for sacrifice. Christ is our atonement. No longer do we need to go before A High Priest, Jesus IS THE High Priest.
Paul, in verse 25 talks about the full number of gentiles coming in. We are currently in the day of gentiles. It DOES NOT mean Jews are EXCLUDED, but that gentiles are INCLUDED. But Paul does talk about a FULL number of gentiles, meaning at some point the door for gentiles will be closed.
If we jump back in Romans chapter 11:
17If some of the branches have been broken off, and you, though a wild olive shoot, have been grafted in among the others and now share in the nourishing sap from the olive root, 18do not boast over those branches. If you do, consider this: You do not support the root, but the root supports you. 19You will say then, "Branches were broken off so that I could be grafted in." 20Granted. But they were broken off because of unbelief, and you stand by faith. Do not be arrogant, but be afraid. 21For if God did not spare the natural branches, he will not spare you either.
22Consider therefore the kindness and sternness of God: sternness to those who fell, but kindness to you, provided that you continue in his kindness. Otherwise, you also will be cut off. 23And if they do not persist in unbelief, they will be grafted in, for God is able to graft them in again. 24After all, if you were cut out of an olive tree that is wild by nature, and contrary to nature were grafted into a cultivated olive tree, how much more readily will these, the natural branches, be grafted into their own olive tree!
Us gentiles are the wild branches, Israel is the natural, the root.
Paul warns us not to be arrogant. That we do not support the root, but that the root supports us. That we were GRAFTED in because of Gods kindness.
Jews were "broken off" because of unbelief in Christ as the Messiah, gentiles who believe have been grafted in in their place. BUT if a Jew believes he will be grafted back in.
Jews STILL are Gods CHOSEN people.:
Romans 11:28As far as the gospel is concerned, they are enemies on your account; but as far as election is concerned, they are loved on account of the patriarchs, 29for God's gifts and his call are irrevocable.
Paul, in another place, described himself basically as a Jews Jew. He was a Pharisee, a Rabi, perfect according to the law, AND YET he was a Christian. He was a broken off natural branch, until his conversion on the road to Damascus.
None of us should be PROUD of our denominational title. Whether Eastern Orth., Catholic, Baptist, Pentacostal, Presbyterian, Jew or whatever. Being part of a church WILL NOT get you to heaven. Saving grace comes from faith that Jesus is the Christ, God incarnate, and that his death and resurrection are the ONLY things that give us access to the Father.
DO NOT feel contempt for a Jew. By doing so you are showing contempt for what God calls blessed. If a Jew is a Christian, he/she is a brother or sister. If a Jew is not a Christian, mourn for them. BUT NEVER...NEVER look down upon them, and see yourself better. It is STRICTLY by Gods kindness and mercy any of us gentiles can call God Father.
Thanks for the ping!
Am I up for another acrimonious multi-kilopost nighttime (more heat than light) dogfight?
another spewing and flinging of UNBIBLICAL REPLACEMENTARIAN IDIOCIES.
What a surprise. /sar
I don't know if either of you caught this, but if you go to http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/religion/2388170/posts?page=186#186 and scroll to post 187, there are some terrific links to sermons by Dr. Mark Hitchcock on dispensationalism, what dispensationalists really believe, and some simply awesome messages on Preterism where you can listen to Dr. Hitchcock just Biblically annihilate that belief system.
If you have the time, I highly recommend listening to the sermons. They are immensely enlightening.
Making it clickable:
Worth following up on.
I happen to be using someone else's computer at the moment, and it not working, shall I say, up to par. I didn't want to take a chance on attempting to post a link and have someone end up clicking on an al Qaeda chatroom or something.
putting the link on it’s own line with an ENTER immediately at the end of it . . . will work.
I usually try and insure that there’s a blank line berfore and after the link.
Many classic and some neo-postmils see a significant conversion within ethnic Israel during the future spread of the gospel throughout the world.
Indeed. See Not Replacement...Expansion! by Fred Klett.
“I hear ya...Every time I see these threads, I thank God I’m a Bible Believing Dispensationalist...”
The author is blind of his own nakedness.
Replacement theology is far from dispensational, but is a natural consequence of a preterist position. Many reformed believers slip into confusing all of Israel’s blessings as their own, but conveniently forget the cursings attached to a reprobate Israel when they attempt to replace Israel in His Prophetic timeline with the Reformed Church.
While any ‘ism is sure to have its faults, I find dispensationalism much closer to teaching His Word and Plan than any other theologic system. Too bad the author isn’t intellectually honest enough to discern the meaning of Replacement Theology in his zeal to attack dispensationalism. If he were, he might actually catch his own errors and come to realize where dispensationalism offers some growth in his theologic position.