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Does Matthew 21:43 Support Replacement Theology?
Theological Studies ^ | Michael Vlach

Posted on 05/10/2012 4:23:42 PM PDT by wmfights

One text often used by supersessionists to support the idea of the permanent rejection of national Israel is Matt 21:43.[1] In this verse, which Frederick Dale Bruner calls “one of the most important verses in Matthew,”[2] Jesus addressed the unbelief of the leaders of the nation Israel and announced his rejection of them because of their stubborn unbelief: “Therefore I say to you, the kingdom of God will be taken away from you and given to a nation producing the fruit of it.”

What is the significance of Jesus’ words in Matt 21:43? Supersessionists often assert that Jesus was making two major points. The first was that the nation Israel had been permanently rejected as the people of God. The second is that the “nation” to whom the kingdom would be given is the church.

This view that Matt 21:43 teaches the replacement of Israel with the church was held in the Patristic Era. As Origen declared, “Our Lord, seeing the conduct of the Jews not to be at all in keeping with the teaching of the prophets, inculcated by a parable that the kingdom of God would be taken from them, and given to the converts from heathenism.”[3] Irenaeus and Chrysostom, too, believed this text taught the permanent rejection of the Jews.[4] This understanding of Matt 21:43, though, goes beyond just the Patristic Era. According to W. D. Davies and Dale Allison, this view that Matt 21:43 teaches the replacement of national Israel with the church is “the dominant interpretation in Christian history.”[5]

This view of Matt 21:43, however, is improbable for several reasons. The first problem concerns the identity of the “you” from whom the kingdom would be taken. Several interpreters have pointed out that the “you” probably refers to the current leaders of Israel and not the nation as a whole as supersessionists have claimed. M. Eugene Boring, for instance, states: “Who is represented by the ‘you’ from whom the kingdom is taken? Who is the ‘nation’ to whom it is given? In the context, the addressees are clearly the chief priests and Pharisees . . . i.e., the Jewish leadership, not the people as a whole.”[6] Making a similar point, David D. Kupp writes, “Jesus’ growing antipathy to the Jewish leaders has never spelled outright rejection of the Jewish crowds, the people of Israel. Even in 21.43 the target audience is explicitly the leaders, not the people.”[7]

Boring and Kupp appear correct in their observations. Matt 21:45 states that the religious leaders “understood that He [Jesus] was speaking about them.” Anthony J. Saldarini argues that the supersessionist view is more in line with supersessionist presuppositions than with the actual meaning of Matthew 21:43: “This reading, which fits later Christian supercessionist interpretations of Jewish-Christian relations, is beset by several problems, the most obvious of which is that Matthew makes the chief priests and Pharisees apply the parable to themselves (21:45), not to Israel as a whole.”[8]Since the context indicates that Jesus was speaking specifically to the religious leaders of his day, the supersessionist assertion that Jesus was announcing the permanent rejection of the nation Israel appears unlikely.

Another problem with the view that Jesus is declaring the permanent rejection ofIsrael is that other sections of Matthew’s gospel appear to reaffirm or hint at a future forIsrael. As Sanders has pointed out, Matt 19:28 “confirms the view that Jesus looked for the restoration of Israel.”[9] M. A. Elliott asserts that in Matthew’s gospel “nothing explicit is found regarding the rejection of Israel.”[10]

A second problem concerns the supersessionist view that the nation to whom the kingdom would be given is the Christian church.[11] The context of Matthew 21 makes it unlikely that the “nation” of whom Jesus is referring is the church. As Turner writes, “In verse 46 it is clear that the religious leaders believed Jesus was talking about them, not Israel as a whole. Thus it is reading too much into this verse to view it as indicating the replacement of Israel by the Gentile church.”[12] Saldarini points out that theologians who interpret “nation” as the church “are reading in second-century Christian theology” into Matt 21:43.[13]

Thus, Matthew 21:43 is not a supporting text for replacement theology.

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[1] The following authors have expressed the idea that Matt 21:43 teaches the rejection of the nation Israel and/or Israel’s replacement by the church: Jack Dean Kingsbury, Matthew: Structure, Christology, Kingdom (Philadelphia: Fortress, 1975), 157; R. T. France, The Gospel According to Matthew, TNTC, vol. 1 (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1985; reprint, 1987), 310; John Gerstner, Wrongly Dividing the Word of Truth: A Critique of Dispensationalism (Brentwood, TN: Wolgemuth & Hyatt, 1991), 190–91; Archibald Thomas Robertson, Word Pictures in the New Testament, vol. 1 (Grand Rapids: Baker, 1930), 172; Zorn, Christ Triumphant, 30; George Eldon Ladd, The Gospel of the Kingdom (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1959), 114; Karl Rahner, Foundations of Christian Faith: An Introduction to the Idea of Christianity, trans. William V. Dych (New York: Seabury, 1978), 337; Herman Ridderbos, The Coming of the Kingdom, trans. H. de Jongste (Philadelphia: Presbyterian & Reformed, 1962), 352–53; Francis Wright Beare, The Gospel According to Matthew: A Commentary (Oxford: Basil Blackwell, 1981), 431; LaRondelle, The Israel of God in Prophecy, 101; John Bright, The Kingdom of God (Nashville: Abingdon, 1953), 226. Other texts have been used to support this idea of the permanent rejection of Israel. Diprose mentions John 8:30–59 as a possible supporting text for replacement theology. In this text Jesus stresses that the Jewish leaders were not children of Abraham but children of the devil (see 8:44). Ronald E. Diprose, Israel in the Development of Christian Thought (Rome: Istituto Biblico Evangelico Italiano, 2000), 36–38. Diprose also mentions 1 Thess 2:15–16. The latter part of verse 16 states concerning the Jews, “But wrath has come upon them to the utmost.” (55). Bright mentions Matt 8:11 as being parallel to Matthew 21:43. Bright, The Kingdom of God, 226.

[2] Frederick Dale Bruner, Matthew: A Commentary, vol. 2 (Dallas: Word, 1990), 770.

[3] Origen, Against Celsus 2.5, ANF 4:431.

[4] See Irenaeus, Against Heresies 4.36, ANF 1:514; Chrysostom, Homilies on the Gospel of Matthew, 68, PG, 58:631–34; See also Apostolic Constitutions 5.16, ANF 7:446.

[5] W. D. Davies and Dale Allison, A Critical and Exegetical Commentary on the Gospel According to Saint Matthew 19–28, ICC, vol. 3 (Edinburgh: T. & T. Clark, 1997), 189.

[6] M. Eugene Boring, “The Gospel of Matthew: Introduction, Commentary, and Reflections,” NIB, vol. 8 (Nashville: Abingdon, 1995), 415.

[7] David D, Kupp, Matthew’s Emmanuel: Divine Presence and God’s People in the First Gospel(Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1996), 95. According to D. A. Carson, “Strictly speaking, then, v. 43 does not speak of transferring the locus of the people of God from Jews to Gentiles, though it may hint at this insofar as that locus now extends far beyond the authority of the Jewish rulers . . . instead, it speaks of the ending of the role the Jewish religious leaders played in mediating God’s authority.” D. A. Carson, “Matthew,” EBC, vol. 8 (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1981), 454. Luz writes, “Is Jesus announcing the supersession of Israelby the Gentile Church in the history of mankind’s salvation? . . . No, because in this context he is quite clearly speaking to Israel’s leaders and to no one else. No, because ethnos—that same Greek word for ‘people’ that means, in the plural, ‘nations’ or ‘Gentiles’—cannot simply be equated with ‘church.’” Ulrich Luz, The Theology of the Gospel of Matthew, trans. J. Bradford Robinson (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1995), 119. See also David L. Turner, “Matthew 21:43 and the Future of Israel,” Bibliotheca Sacra 159:633 (2002): 56.

[8] Anthony J. Saldarini, Matthew’s Christian-Jewish Community (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1994), 59.

[9] E. P. Sanders, Jesus and Judaism (Philadelphia: Fortress, 1985), 103. By Israel’s restoration, Sanders means “Jewish restoration” (116).

[10] M. A. Elliott, “Israel,” in Dictionary of Jesus and the Gospels, eds. Joel B. Green, Scot McKnight, and I. Howard Marshall (Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity, 1992), 359. Elliott also writes: “Some adherents of this new school of Jesus research hold that the major presupposition for Jesus’ ministry was the widespread eschatological doctrine of the restoration of Israel, and that Jesus both addressed this concern and understood his ministry in the light of the expectation” (360).

[11] According to Frederick Dale Bruner, “A strong exegetical tradition says that the church is not the ‘nation’ to whom Matthew’s Jesus promises that the kingdom ‘will be given.’” Frederick Dale Bruner, Matthew: A Commentary, vol. 2 (Dallas: Word, 1990), 771. Emphasis in original.

[12] Turner, “Matthew 21:43 and the Future of Israel,” 57. If the “nation” in Matt 21:43 is not the church, who is it? Two alternative explanations have been offered. First, Turner argues that the “nation” is “the Matthean community as an eschatological messianic remnant whose leaders will replace the current Jerusalemestablishment and lead Israel in bearing the fruit of righteousness to God” (59). This “Matthean Christian Jewish community” is allegedly “led by Jesus’ apostles” (61). See also Saldarini, Matthew’s Christian-Jewish Community, 63. Others have understood the “nation” of Matthew 21:43 as referring to a future believing generation of Israel. See Arnold G. Fruchtenbaum, Israelology: The Missing Link in Systematic Theology(Tustin, CA: Ariel, 1994), 60.

[13] Saldarini, 60.


TOPICS: Charismatic Christian; Evangelical Christian; General Discusssion; Mainline Protestant
KEYWORDS: replacementtheology; supersessionism
The first problem concerns the identity of the “you” from whom the kingdom would be taken. Several interpreters have pointed out that the “you” probably refers to the current leaders of Israel and not the nation as a whole as supersessionists have claimed.

Another problem with the view that Jesus is declaring the permanent rejection ofIsrael is that other sections of Matthew’s gospel appear to reaffirm or hint at a future forIsrael. As Sanders has pointed out, Matt 19:28 “confirms the view that Jesus looked for the restoration of Israel.”

1 posted on 05/10/2012 4:23:49 PM PDT by wmfights
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To: Alamo-Girl; Amityschild; AngieGal; AnimalLover; Ann de IL; aposiopetic; aragorn; auggy; ...

Ping


2 posted on 05/10/2012 4:25:51 PM PDT by wmfights
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To: wmfights

I think Paul’s teaching in Romans regarding the vine and branches to which “you” were grafted in go a long way explaining Israel’s place in God’s plan.

Besides, standing with Israel and the Jewish people is the REAL “right side of history”...not this pro-sodomy position with which Barack Obama and the network “news” readers are enamored.


3 posted on 05/10/2012 4:29:24 PM PDT by SoFloFreeper
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To: wmfights

I don’t think so.


4 posted on 05/10/2012 4:30:42 PM PDT by smokingfrog ( sleep with one eye open (<o> ---)
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To: SoFloFreeper
I think Paul’s teaching in Romans regarding the vine and branches to which “you” were grafted in go a long way explaining Israel’s place in God’s plan.

I agree.

I thought this particular study was interesting in that the author is focused on Matthew. It's good to remember when Supersessionists attempt to use:

Matt. 21:43 Therefore I say to you, the kingdom of God will be taken from you and given to a nation bearing the fruits of it.

to say that the church is the nation that just 2 verses later the object of Jesus point is mentioned.

Matt. 21:45 Now when the chief priests and Pharisees heard His parables, they perceived that He was speaking of them.

Also, if we look at The Revelation of Jesus Christ it makes sense why 12,000 witnesses are taken from the 12 tribes of Israel. They will share the Gospel of the Kingdom with Israel and create the fruit.

5 posted on 05/10/2012 4:52:39 PM PDT by wmfights
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To: wmfights
If not the “nation as a whole” then who was the “nation” to which the kingdom was now going to be given?

Jesus’ words at Matthew 23:37-39 show his words were addressed to the nation as Jerusalem was representative of the whole nation.

Cities were often compared to women in the Bible and the citizens the cities’ children.

Just a short time later Jesus provides a warning sign that Jerusalem, not just the religious leaders, was to be destroyed, “your house is abandoned to you”, and it was.

A heavenly king of the line of David, a nation of heavenly king/priests, a high priest who made one sacrifice for all time. That is what spiritual Israel would look like, a nation.

Those who want to confine God's kingdom to the earth must have forgotten that it was the kingdom of heaven Jesus preached not the kingdom of a U.N. mandated territory calling it's self Israel.

6 posted on 05/10/2012 5:09:23 PM PDT by count-your-change (You don't have to be brilliant, not being stupid is enough.)
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To: wmfights

God made a covenant with Israel-forever, in His words. If those words in the Jewish Bible are untrue, then so are the words in that same Bible that Christians claim predict the arrival of Jesus. You cannot have it both ways-either the whole thing is true, or the whole thing is bunk. Most importantly, how can anyone say that God would break His word?

Besides, is it beyond imagination that God could make one covenant with the Jews and a separate one with the Gentiles? Is the omnicient, all-powerful Creator limited in this manner?


7 posted on 05/10/2012 6:04:50 PM PDT by Ancesthntr (Bibi to Odumbo: Its not going to happen.)
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To: wmfights

I wonder what the replacement theologians think of the poor prophet Hosea.

God told Hosea he wanted to illustrate how he remained faithful while Israel did not, so he commanded him to marry a prostitute.

So then, did God change his mind? Did he retract the other promises and covenants he made? I don’t think so.

When Jesus told the Parable of the Prodigal son, who was the prodigal son? Who was the older bother in the field (clearly the prodigal son is the gentile nations, and the older brother is Israel).

DId God not say he wanted to gather all the nations, and Jesus himself repeat the lament, Jersusalem, Jerusalem.......(if you know the rest of this verse you know God weaps over Jews in particular who chose darkness). It’s bad enough for a gentile to choose darkness, but God made a promise to Israel, and he is not slack concerning his promises.

Summary: Man is not faithful, but God is. I hope God does not judge me by righteous standards, but rather sees me through a lens cloaked in the blood of my Savior. So likewise should it be for every tongue and tribe, including the Jew.


8 posted on 05/10/2012 6:11:52 PM PDT by BereanBrain
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To: wmfights

Thanks for the ping!


9 posted on 05/10/2012 8:52:46 PM PDT by Alamo-Girl
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To: wmfights
Does Matthew 21:43 Support Replacement Theology?

It has been a while since I have had the time to do much more than quickly surf for the latest workings of the destroying left.... But this thread caught my attention.

Matthew 21:31 Christ tells who ultimately will not enter 'the kingdom', and it is not specific to 'race, nationality or nation'. "......Jesus saith unto them, "Verily I say unto you, That the publicans and the harlots go into the kingdom of God before you.

32 For John came unto you in the way of righteousness, and ye believed him not: but the publicans and the harlots believed him: and ye, when ye had seen it, repented not afterward, that ye might believe him.

So the you is any and all of the religious communities since the beginning up to the appointed time that when they 'heard' the truth rebelled. Race, nationality or even gender is NOT relevant. There is NO 'replacement' of what was written down by Isaiah in chapter 45.... First of which is listed Cyrus, NOT of Jacob, that was God's anointed. This chapter lays out in simplicity that Christ's specific address to the religious community that sought to 'kill' Him does NOT undo, or as modern religiosity seek to conjure up 'replace' anyone.

Isaiah 45:17 But Israel shall be save in the LORD with an everlasting 'salvation': ye shall not be ashamed nor confounded world without end.

John 3:16 For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, T H A T whosoever believeth IN Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

Fortunately for all, God is the only perfect 'judge' and only HE can know with a surety who does what in full knowledge or in trained ignorance...

10 posted on 05/10/2012 9:26:44 PM PDT by Just mythoughts (Luke 17:32 Remember Lot's wife.)
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To: wmfights

Israel is to the Christian Church as the caterpillar is to the butterfly.


11 posted on 05/11/2012 1:40:17 AM PDT by circlecity
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To: wmfights
Thanks for the ping, wmfights.

This is an excellent article, and makes some points that are basically inarguable. God does indeed tell us that Jesus was referring to the religious leaders, not the Jewish people, when He said that He was taking the kingdom away from them, and since He never specifies what the "nation" is that He will give the kingdom to, anything we may believe it is is an assumption, nothing more.

If it is the Church, then we have the "kingdom" only temporarily, as the Church age will end at the Rapture. It actually makes more sense to believe that the "nation" spoken of by Christ refers to the nation of Israel, since, after all, Israel is the only option that can be referred to as a "nation". The Church is not a nation, but is made up of those from around the world that have chosen to be part of God's family. The Church is not a nation, is a spiritual body.

Now that we have the usual non-Christians on here continuing to deny Scripture and now attempting to rob God of the honor and glory that belong to Him for His fulfillment of His promises to His people to bring them back into their own land and reestablish them as a nation and do it in one day and give that honor and glory to the godless, Christ-rejecting UN, this article is very timely.

Thanks for posting.

12 posted on 05/11/2012 5:06:44 AM PDT by GiovannaNicoletta ("....in the last days, mockers will come with their mocking... (2 Peter 3:3))
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To: BereanBrain

Beautiful, well said.


13 posted on 05/11/2012 6:51:47 AM PDT by wmfights
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To: wmfights
I hope Israel gives the rag barbarians an ass-kickin' of truly Biblical proportions !

/.02

14 posted on 05/11/2012 6:54:40 AM PDT by tomkat ( FU.baraq <font finger=middle>)
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To: GiovannaNicoletta
This is an excellent article, and makes some points that are basically inarguable.

I thought so to. I think he laid out the arguments about these passages pretty well. I especially like that he uses Scripture to explain Scripture and some common sense.

He never specifies what the "nation" is that He will give the kingdom to, anything we may believe it is is an assumption, nothing more.

What occurred to me as I read this was the relationship between this verse and the 144,000 witnesses.

Matt. 21:43 ...given to a nation bearing fruits of it.

We know that part of Israel flees when they finally recognize what's happening, but that really isn't bearing fruit. However, the witnesses stay behind and testify to the Gospel of the Kingdom. The witnesses do bear fruit.

Now that we have the usual non-Christians on here continuing to deny Scripture and now attempting to rob God of the honor and glory that belong to Him for His fulfillment of His promises to His people to bring them back into their own land and reestablish them as a nation and do it in one day and give that honor and glory to the godless, Christ-rejecting UN, this article is very timely.

I think most people who consider themselves Christians don't understand the significance of Jerusalem being placed under control of an "international" organization. Also, most don't consider how an eschatological view would drive a church to want to control Jerusalem. It's all being done in the name of promoting "peace".

I know for me I've learned a great deal over the years reading some threads and one of the things that I found appealing with this study is the author footnotes sources which makes it easy for people who want to get books on the subject.I think a lot of people are curious about eschatology, but are afraid to ask.

15 posted on 05/11/2012 7:15:20 AM PDT by wmfights
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To: tomkat

If you read the Book we know who wins in the end.


16 posted on 05/11/2012 7:17:44 AM PDT by wmfights
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To: wmfights
One text often used by supersessionists to support the idea of the permanent rejection of national Israel is Matt 21:43.[1] In this verse, which Frederick Dale Bruner calls “one of the most important verses in Matthew,”[2] Jesus addressed the unbelief of the leaders of the nation Israel and announced his rejection of them because of their stubborn unbelief: “Therefore I say to you, the kingdom of God will be taken away from you and given to a nation producing the fruit of it.”

The kingdom of God is NOT the same as the kingdom of Israel. Please compare the following:

Mar 15:43 Joseph of Arimathea, a respected member of the Council, who was also himself looking for the kingdom of God, took courage and went to Pilate and asked for the body of Jesus.

Dan 2:44 And in the days of those kings the God of heaven will set up a kingdom that shall never be destroyed, nor shall the kingdom be left to another people. It shall break in pieces all these kingdoms and bring them to an end, and it shall stand forever,

Mat 12:28 But if it is by the Spirit of God that I cast out demons, then the kingdom of God has come upon you.

If the kingdom of God was Israel, then Joseph of Arimathea would not have been looking for it. Instead, Daniel prophesied that the kingdom of God would come and destroy all other kingdoms. According to our Lord, this was fulfilled when the Holy Spirit came upon the believers.

The Jews thought they had a lock on God's kingdom. In fact they rejected God as being king over them a long time beforehand. (1 Sam 8:7)

17 posted on 05/11/2012 9:46:20 AM PDT by HarleyD
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To: BereanBrain; wmfights
So then, did God change his mind?

God never changes His mind.

I hope God does not judge me by righteous standards, but rather sees me through a lens cloaked in the blood of my Savior. So likewise should it be for every tongue and tribe, including the Jew.

Every nation WILL be judged by our Savior and those who are covered by His blood will not face condemnation. Including the Jews.

18 posted on 05/11/2012 10:13:18 AM PDT by HarleyD
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To: wmfights
The key is to believe the 'whole counsel of God'...

 Act 20:27  For I have not shunned to declare unto you all the counsel of God.

Most any thing can be proven with scripture...

Are there verses which show that God is finished with Israel???  Yes...Are there verses which show that God is not finished with Israel???  Absolutely...

Are there scriptures which show that people can lose their salvation???  Definately...Are there scriptures which show that one can not lose his/her salvation???  Yes, without question...

So where's the problem???  It's comical to see folks pick out the scriptures which support one position while ignoring the scriptures that support the other...And then claiming to be knowledgeable bible scholars or critics...

If they can't reconcile all the scriptures, they'd be better off just listening to the people who DO believe 'all the counsel of God'...

You don't have to be an intellectual to realize that the Kingdom of Heaven and the Kingdom of God are not the same...All you have to do is to believe God...

The Kingdom of God, the spiritual kingdom was taken away from Israel and given to the Gentile church...The Kingdom of Heaven, the physical kingdom, was not taken away from Israel but put on hold til the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled...

When we come across people who read Mat. 25 but can't reconcile it with Eph. 2, just ignore them...They can't lead us anywhere except into the ditch...

 

19 posted on 05/11/2012 5:38:54 PM PDT by Iscool (You mess with me, you mess with the WHOLE trailerpark...)
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To: HarleyD; BereanBrain; Iscool
The kingdom of God is NOT the same as the kingdom of Israel.

Let me try and get you to see the bigger picture by asking some questions.

Do you believe there will be a Tribulation?

Do you believe Born Again Christians will live through the Tribulation, or be taken away before or during it?

When Jesus establishes his Millennial Reign are the survivors of the Tribulation the same as the resurrected saints?

The OT tells us that during the Messianic Reign that Temple practices will be instituted, why?

HD, I pinged some others because I can't post as frequently as I use to because of work. Please feel free to include Reformed that would be helpful.

20 posted on 05/12/2012 6:16:14 PM PDT by wmfights
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To: wmfights
Let me try and get you to see the bigger picture by asking some questions.

Do you believe there will be a Tribulation?

Yes. Scripture teaches there will be, the only question is timing

Do you believe Born Again Christians will live through the Tribulation, or be taken away before or during it?

I believe Born Again Christians (that's the only kind), will live through the first 3.5 years of Tribulation, which is to say, Satan's wrath. I believe we will be caught up at the mid-point, at which the wrath of God begins to fall upon the earth So even though I believe Christians won't experience God's wrath on the earth, my reading shows that the first 3.5 years are the result of Satan being allowed to wreck havoc.

When Jesus establishes his Millennial Reign are the survivors of the Tribulation the same as the resurrected saints?

That's a point that seems a bit esoteric, because as they say, "all the shoot'n is over with" at that point. I don't have an opinion here because I have not studied it, and don't find it particularly interesting compared to other end time events.

The OT tells us that during the Messianic Reign that Temple practices will be instituted, why?

I have not studied much about the 1000 year reign, sorry I can't offer an answer to this question!.

21 posted on 05/12/2012 7:58:26 PM PDT by BereanBrain
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To: wmfights
Let me try and get you to see the bigger picture by asking some questions.

Do you believe there will be a Tribulation?

A: Have no doubts about it...

Do you believe Born Again Christians will live through the Tribulation, or be taken away before or during it?

A: Before...Although there is room for a limited mid Tribulation resurrection... 

When Jesus establishes his Millennial Reign are the survivors of the Tribulation the same as the resurrected saints?

A: No...The resurrected Saints will be celestial beings...Those who live thru the tribulation on into the Millennium will still be terrestial beings...

The resurrected Saints will be the bride of Christ...The terrestial beings will not...

The OT tells us that during the Messianic Reign that Temple practices will be instituted, why?

A:  That requires a long answer to be totally comprehensible...But the short answer is that men and women will be born (as children) during the Millennium and God will still require an atoning sacrifice...

The Holy Spirit will be removed from the earth prior to the Tribulation along with the church...There will be no more indwelling of the Spirit within the believer...

There will be no more 'new man' nor fruits of the Spirit...

Jesus will then  become the King of Kings and Lord of Lords...He will be a physical ruler of a physical kingdom; not a spiritual kingdom as we now know it...

Faith and works will then be required for salvation at the last judgment...



22 posted on 05/12/2012 8:08:34 PM PDT by Iscool (You mess with me, you mess with the WHOLE trailerpark...)
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To: wmfights; BereanBrain; Iscool
Hi wmfights. Yes I understand the problems of posting. I can't get out here as much as I use to.

Do you believe there will be a Tribulation?

It doesn't matter if there will be some special "Tribulation" or not. Christians have been going through tribulation throughout the centuries and will until Christ return. We were promised that all who live a godly life will face persecution. And though some of us might not seem to have much in the way of overt persecution, there is persecution in our lives. Christ promises to be with us in our tribulations. So what difference does any other kind of "Tribulation" means to us?

Do you believe Born Again Christians will live through the Tribulation, or be taken away before or during it?

Again, it doesn't matter. But when Christ return we will be caught up with Him. That will be that.

The OT tells us that during the Messianic Reign that Temple practices will be instituted, why?

Could you be a bit more specific? The Old Testament also tells us that God has NO delight in the sacrifices of goats and bulls. The New Testament tells us that Christ paid the perfect sacrifice. There is no need for any other sacrifice.

If people would really like to know what the purpose was of sacrificing all those goats and bulls, I would suggest reading the requirements of Leviticus 5.

Why, people would be sacrificing all day and all night long. They could never stop until they went broke with the buying of goats. As soon as they sacrifice one goat they be back because they do something rash again. That's our nature. In the end the large volume of stench and filth and hideous blood and entrails would be appalling enough to make one sick and beg God's mercy, simply ignore it altogether, or pretend they were living by the Law.

Hey, God is pretty smart. What a visual representation and an impossible one to give to a nomadic tribe. And that, my friend, was the intention of the Old Testament sacrifices; to show exactly how ugly and repulsive our sin is to God and how it is impossible for us to be justified in His sight by our efforts. God doesn't care about the goats and bulls and turtle doves. He wants us to understand the hideousness of our sin (every minute, every hour, every day) and the demanding price that must be paid. The impossible sacrifices of the Old Testament pointed to the actual day of atonement when God gave us the perfect sacrifice so that we could be reconciled to Him in the most repulsive act that would take place. And there will never be another time when we will ever see such stench and filth and hideous blood and entrails poured out for us nor a more perfect sacrifice. Never will there be another need for a sacrifice because we can look back and see for ourselves when the ultimate sacrifice took place.

23 posted on 05/13/2012 1:54:01 PM PDT by HarleyD
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To: HarleyD; BereanBrain; Iscool
It doesn't matter if there will be some special "Tribulation" or not.

It makes it impossible to understand Revelation especially chapters 4-19 without believing there will be a Tribulation. Jesus Christ discussed the end times in Matthew. The prophets Isaiah, Jeremiah, Daniel discussed the end times as well. IOW, the end times must be important.

Could you be a bit more specific?

Iscool stated it a lot better than I did in his post just a couple before this. The Millennial Reign is the fulfillment of the Jewish understanding of the Messianic Kingdom. The people inhabiting the earth are not believers in glorified bodies. They repopulate the earth prior to the final rebellion.

The supersessionist view that the church is the "nation" that Jesus gave the Kingdom to does not account for these people. It makes understanding Revelation impossible. I'm arguing that these people are the 1/3rd of Israel that survives the Tribulation and the people saved through the testimony of the 144,000 witnesses. They live the promise that God made to Abraham and foretold of in Prophesy before we are all united in the New Jerusalem.

24 posted on 05/14/2012 10:38:08 AM PDT by wmfights
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To: wmfights
In a Jewish Orthodox family if one converts to Chr*stianity they hold a funeral for that family member. Why? Because Yeshua instructed them to. Just read Luke 15, the Prodigal Son and it goes like this!

The Older brother is Judaism, never left the Father, the younger Chr*stianity. Left the Father running after harlots, a metaphor for false teaching(s). And the younger brother is dead (in his current condition), hence the funeral. T'Shuva people! (Return, like the Prodigal...)

25 posted on 05/14/2012 1:41:00 PM PDT by Jeremiah Jr (Chi ha-Olamim)
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To: wmfights; BereanBrain; Iscool
There are plausible explanations of Revelation but I have yet to find one that I'm content with. As far as Isaiah, Jeremiah, and Daniel are concern they are much more easy to reconcile.

That being said, there are certain facts of faith that cannot be thrown out simply trying to explain Revelation. The first, and most important, is that anyone that does not know our Lord Jesus as their Savior is under a curse and the wrath of God rest upon them. God does not bless them. This is stated over and over in both the Old and New Testament. That is simply because the purity of God cannot stand the sight of us. This speaks volumes of the love of God which STILL would try to reach to us despite our wickedness. It also should give us a clue to our self-worth.

The second is all who desire to live a godly life will face persecution. The third is that Christ blood is the ONLY thing that covers our sins-not the blood of goats and pigeons.

Everyone who has known God through the ages has come to know Him exactly in the same way. There is no difference between the way Moses, Abraham, or Jacob were called verses the way you or I were called. We might not have seen a burning bush or a staircase to heaven but our saving faith was exactly the same. God opened our eyes and ears to the truth. God called us out of darkness into a great light to somehow bring glory to His name.

I think all of this talk about the “final battle” is, quiet frankly, silliness. What final battle? Do believers think for one moment that God, who nearly destroyed the world through the flood, swallowed up the rebels of Korah, or rained sulfur on Sodom, is in some epic battle or conflict with Satan? This is the same God who the demons must ask permission to enter a herd of swine. This is the same God who controls nature, time, and death itself. This is not only heretical doctrine but it's also pagan doctrine.

Please consider the fact that in the supersessionist view, which was the church's view for over 1900 years, the “Millennial Reign” Jews simply do not exist. The Jews of Acts, the moment they believed, were happy to call themselves Christians. We who are believers and of Adam's race, both Jews and Gentiles, are ALL adopted into God's family which contains just ONE perfect Son.

God saves us simply so we will bring glory and honor to Him. God, in His mercy, for some unknown reason to execute His plan, decided that He is going to take His time and effort to pour out His blessings on His believers so that He can show what mercy really is. We didn't earn it. We didn't ask for it. God just simply opened our eyes and our spirits cried, “Abba, Father”. And though we are covered in Christ's blood and we are saved through Him, we are still evil and wicked needing His constant attention and improvement which He gladly gives.

Because we represent God, God MUST chasten us to help us conform to the image of His Son. It is all His chastening and turbulence in our lives that causes us to grow as Christians. It isn't because we make a decision for Christ and rush out to actively live a life to Christ. We don't. We would want to sin if it wasn't for the Holy Spirit constantly nagging us in the background.

God doesn't need a special age in which to bring people around nor does He need a Millennial Reign. He is bring people around right around us. And when the fullness of the Gentile is completed, that will be the end-and the beginning.

26 posted on 05/14/2012 5:58:42 PM PDT by HarleyD
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To: wmfights
This is an excellent article on replacement theology and the fact that those who buy into it are in grave spiritual danger.

An excerpt:

The epistle of 1 John clearly tells us the method to determine of someone was from God regarding the first coming of the Lord Jesus Christ. The test was whether Jesus Christ literally came in the flesh. Those that believed He did were of God.

1 John 4:2 Hereby know ye the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesseth that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is of God:

Conversely, those that did not believe that He came in the flesh were not of God, but were of the spirit of antichrist. This is a very simple test that revolved around the literalness of Bible prophecy.

1 John 4:3 And every spirit that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God: and this is that spirit of antichrist, whereof ye have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world.

This was aimed at the gnostics which believe that Jesus Christ was just a spirit being that did not have a body, but notice that it was the literal interpretation of the Bible that is what the Apostle John was defending. There was much more than the Lord Jesus came in the flesh because if He was merely a man, He could not redeem mankind. EVERYTHING about the first coming of the Lord Jesus was LITERAL. This is what John is driving at in showing who is from God and who is manifesting the spirit of antichrist. It was over the literalness of Christ’s first coming according to the Bible.

There is really no scripture about Christ’s first coming that was not literal. The following are just a few verses to show the Old Testament scriptures prophesying the Lord’s coming as a man were all literal. There is no spiritualizing the first coming of the Lord Jesus. It is all literal!

Isaiah 7:14 He was born of a virgin Micah 5:2 He was born in Bethlehem
Isaiah 9:1,2 His ministry would be from the Galilee
Isaiah 42:6,7 His healing ministry opened the physical eyes of the blind
Zechariah 9:9 He presented Himself to Israel as King riding on a donkey. Isaiah 53:9 He was sinless
Isaiah 53:10 He was made an offering for sin
Psalm 22:14-17 He died on the cross as described in these verses.
Psalm 16:10 Jesus Christ bodily rose from the dead.

The above verses show what it means that Jesus Christ came in the flesh. Any denial of these verses means that this person is of the spirit of antichrist and not of God. For example, how can someone deny the virgin birth, and yet “confesseth that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh”? He had to be born from a virgin, so He could be the sinless Son of God to redeem mankind? To deny He was born from a virgin was to deny that Jesus Christ came in the flesh.

Now let us look at the glorious Second Coming of the Lord Jesus Christ.

By applying the test for His first coming, we can determine whether a doctrine of His Second Coming is from God or the spirit of the antichrist. The test is centered on the literalness of His coming. The Old Testament was literal about His first coming, so what changed about the literalness of His Second Coming? Can the first coming of Jesus Christ be literal, and yet, somehow the Second Coming is now switched to being spiritualized? Jesus Christ is coming the second time literally just as His first coming was.

Luke 21:24 Jesus Christ stated that the destruction of Jerusalem and dispersion of the Jews was temporary.
Zechariah 14:3,4 Jerusalem will be the literal location of His Second Coming.
Zechariah 12:6 Jerusalem will be the capital of a Jewish state.
Zechariah 12:6 Israel will be a great military power.
Ezekiel 36:16-24 God will restored the Jews back to Israel in unbelief before the Second Coming of Jesus Christ.
Romans 11:26,27 At the Second Coming all Israel will be saved.
Ezekiel 36:8-15 The land of Israel will be greatly blessed.
Ezekiel 38:8 The Jews will be restored to Israel from all nations in the latter-day.
Daniel 7:13,14 Jesus Christ will return with the “Clouds of Heaven,” His church to establish a kingdom on earth.
Revelation 19:5-9 After the Marriage Supper of the Lamb, His bride will return with Him to Jerusalem.
Revelation 20:3-5 His kingdom will last of 1000 years.
Revelation 19:11-15 He is returning bodily.
Zechariah 14:12 When Jesus Christ returns, He will annihilate the armies gathered to destroy the Jews and Jerusalem.
Ezekiel 43:7 He will rule on the throne of David from His temple on Mount Zion.

There are many more scriptures but the ones posted above show what is needed to believe in the literal Second Coming of Jesus Christ. An integral part of Christ’s Second Coming is the restoration of the nation of Israel as He is returning to Jerusalem, and all of Israel will call upon Him as their Savior! This is the time when all Israel and not the church will be saved. How is it possible to spiritualize Romans 11:25-28?

Romans 11:25 For I would not, brethren, that ye should be ignorant of this mystery, lest ye should be wise in your own conceits; that blindness in part is happened to Israel, until the fulness of the Gentiles be come in. (26-27) And so all Israel shall be saved: as it is written, There shall come out of Sion the Deliverer, and shall turn away ungodliness from Jacob: For this is my covenant unto them, when I shall take away their sins. (28) As concerning the gospel, they are enemies for your sakes: but as touching the election, they are beloved for the fathers’ sakes.

The First and Second Coming of Jesus Christ together:

Zechariah 9:9 Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion; shout, O daughter of Jerusalem: behold, thy King cometh unto thee: he is just, and having salvation; lowly, and riding upon an ass, and upon a colt the foal of an ass.

Zechariah 9:10 And I will cut off the chariot from Ephraim, and the horse from Jerusalem, and the battle bow shall be cut off: and he shall speak peace unto the heathen: and his dominion shall be from sea even to sea, and from the river even to the ends of the earth.

Based on Replacement Theology, is one suppose to believe that verse nine is literal, while the following verse is now spiritualized to mean something else? That Ephraim and Jerusalem now mean the church? The Lord Jesus came literally to Jerusalem in verse 9, but somehow Jerusalem in verse 10 is not to be understood literally? These two verses together show the fallacy of Replacement Theology. They both are literal.

Any person that tampers with the literalness of Christ’s Second Coming is playing with spiritual fire and is falling under the danger being condemned as being from the spirit of antichrist. How can someone claim to being led by the Holy Spirit and deny the literalness of Christ’s Second Coming, and in many cases actively hinder the fulfillment of God’s prophetic word? How can someone claim Jesus Christ as his Savior, and yet refuse to see the connection between the everlasting covenant and modern Israel?

The nation of Israel was twice destroyed in 600 BC and 70 AD. The second dispersion lasted for 1900 years, but now Jerusalem is once again the capital of Israel. They speak Hebrew which had been an extinct language. They even have shekels once again for money. The unbelief of Replacement Theology is very, very powerful. With Israel once again a nation, it takes a greater unbelief to deny Israel, then it does to believe the nation is the fulfillment of prophecy and covenant.

The Lord Jesus stated the coming destruction of Jerusalem, in His day, was only temporary until the “times of the Gentiles were fulfilled”. Current events are indicating that the “times of the Gentiles” are coming to an end.

Luke 21:24 And they shall fall by the edge of the sword, and shall be led away captive into all nations: and Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled.

Just as apostates in the Apostle John’s day refused to believe the literalness of Christ’s first coming, now in our day there are huge numbers of people who refuse to believe in the literalness of Christ’s Second Coming. These people are in great spiritual danger. They share the same unbelief as Muslims as they refuse to believe the Bible. The Muslims reject modern Israel as does Replacement Theology. Because of this unbelief, God is in the process of merging these two groups. This can clearly be seen in the rhetoric and actions in many of the Replacement Theology camp. They and Muslims both use the very same rhetoric and arguments against Israel. They both are actively trying to delegitimize Israel.

Islam is being led by the spirit of antichirst, and now many of the Replacement Theology camp have merged with them. They face the same judgment as Islam. Whoever interferes with God’s prophetic plan for Israel faces judgment from the Holy God of Israel. The reason for this is the Second Coming of Jesus Christ is directly tied to the nation of Israel. He is returning to Jerusalem!

Obadiah 1:15 For the day of the LORD is near upon all the heathen: as thou hast done (To Israel), it shall be done unto thee: thy reward shall return upon thine own head.

God keeps all His promises.

27 posted on 05/15/2012 8:42:16 AM PDT by GiovannaNicoletta ("....in the last days, mockers will come with their mocking... (2 Peter 3:3))
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To: HarleyD

I would like a scriptural basis for your conclusions.

Don’t get me wrong, I don’t defend theological constructions — I like to go back to the source — the Word of God — as the ONLY source of authority (rather than church history, councils, opinions, treaties, etc). Not that you shouldn’t read them, but they are simply the *opinions* of men.

For example, I think your comment about us (believers) being blessed while the rest of the world is cursed is mistaken. We are living in the age of Grace - that is, God has suspended his judgement for a little while. If he really did punish those that did wrong, and reward those that believed (for none to right in the eyes of God, save Jesus), then none would stand. In fact, the nations of the earth would NOT receive rain (as will occur in the future).

Matthew 4:5 springs to mind (paraphased) He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous.

There will come a day however, when God will no longer deal with the whole of mankind with Grace, and that day will be terrible and fearful for all. The only thing that will make it tolerable (for believers) is the blood of Jesus, who died for them, and assuages God’s mighty wrath.

As to your comments about the 1000 years, I do take the description in Rev 20 very seriously, I may not know how it fits in timing wise, but there will be a 1,000 year interval as decribed, just as there will be a 7 year interval.

I really don’t care much for tag-lines, and systematic theology. The “reformed” movement has replaced the institutionalized bad theology of the Catholic church with a version of their own (get rid of indulgences and pergatory, replace with double predestination).

It’s ironic that a movement founded on “Sola Scriptura” now routinely places more emphasis on the Westminster Catechism and Calvinism than the fact that God would that none should perish but all come to repentance.


28 posted on 05/15/2012 1:29:27 PM PDT by BereanBrain
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To: BereanBrain
For example, I think your comment about us (believers) being blessed while the rest of the world is cursed is mistaken. We are living in the age of Grace - that is, God has suspended his judgement for a little while.

I would really like some references on that as well. If you want my references (from the New Testament) I would suggest some of the following:

Few people understand that God's wrath is our just payment-what we ask for. We keep mocking God and pushing Him while He constantly provides us His love and care. It's not much different than the children of Israel in the desert who though God fed, cloth and protected them, they constant reviled Him. That is our nature and God's nature. God's wrath only comes when we have finally gone too far.

Those who feel Israel is simply the apple of God's eye should take a hard and fast look at Moses' warning in Deut 31. And should we feel smug, this is our very corruptible nature as well. The warning can apply to us just as well. No, the Old Testament is not dead but is alive and well, with lots of insight and instructions for our lives.

I know of nothing in scripture, or in the Westminster Confessions, that would even hint that God's wrath has subsided.

29 posted on 05/15/2012 5:41:07 PM PDT by HarleyD
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To: HarleyD

I think you are right, I think the confusion between your position and mine is that I think the wrath of god INCLUDES his judgement.

Right now for example, wicked people experience the wrath of God in that he gives them what the want (to be left to their own devices, which does not turn out good). However, the wrath of God (judgement-wise) as spoken if Revelation will be revealed as a whole, and at the final judgement of course the account(s) will be settled.

Romans 1

18The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of men who suppress the truth by their wickedness, 19since what may be known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them. 20For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse.

21For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened. 22Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools 23and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like mortal man and birds and animals and reptiles.

24Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another.


30 posted on 05/17/2012 7:12:26 PM PDT by BereanBrain
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