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The Pandemonium Perpetrated by the Premillennialist Paradigm
OpinioNet.com ^ | 06/06/2002 | Lee R. Shelton IV

Posted on 06/05/2002 11:51:09 AM PDT by sheltonmac

The Pandemonium Perpetrated by the Premillennialist Paradigm

Any time there is a flurry of activity in the Middle East you can count on evangelical Christians to put on a good show. They run around proclaiming an "End of the World Is Near" gospel in hopes of scaring people into the Kingdom of God.

I refer to such Christians as "they" because I happen to be one of those evangelical Christians who believe that God is no longer dealing with national Israel and that His chosen people are those who comprise the church—essentially, all who believe in Christ. This may seem like a radical concept to those who look upon writers of doomsday fiction as prophetic geniuses, but that's what happens when people are drawn away from that boring, dust-covered, leaherbound Bible on the coffee table by novels with flashy covers and catchy titles.

When it comes to end times "prophecy," premillennialists seem to have a monopoly on the market. Hal Lindsey burst upon the scene in the 1970's with The Late Great Planet Earth. It became an international best-seller. In like fashion, the Left Behind series by Tim LaHaye and Jerry B. Jenkins has proven to be one of the most lucrative enterprises in the history of Christendom. Sure, these books are by no means examples of literary greatness, but the authors more than make up for that with pure, unadulterated prophetic sensationalism.

The success of apocalyptic authors like Lindsey, LaHaye and Jenkins stems from their ability to exploit the prevailing eschatological school of thought among evangelical Christians, that being dispensational premillennialism. (Thank you, John Nelson Darby!) When it comes to the end times, most premillennialists believe that all Christians will be "raptured," that is, taken up out of the world by Jesus Christ at his almost second coming. Those left behind will have to face the Great Tribulation, a seven-year period of unparalleled chaos which will also herald the rule of the Anti-Christ. At the end of the Tribulation, Christ will return—his actual second coming—to set up his earthly kingdom and reign on the throne of David for a thousand years. After that millennial time of peace, God will do away with evil once and for all at the Great White Throne Judgment. (How there can be a thousand years of peace with evil present I cannot say. I suppose it's one of those things that just works it self out in the premillennialist model.)

With all the hype surrounding the end times, it is certainly understandable that theological misconceptions will filter down into our political ideology. This is not a new phenomenon. In fact, ever since the arrival of dispensational premillennialism on this continent in the 19th century our national political position has shifted to accomodate this line of thinking, thanks to the efforts of evangelical Christians.

Evangelical Christian influence has been around since the founding of this nation, and the beliefs of evangelicals have spilled over into politics. Ordinarily there would be nothing wrong with this, but flawed theology has since given way to a flawed foreign policy, and U.S. interests have become inextricably tied to the interests of modern Israel.

Strong political support for a Jewish nation began in the early 1900s. During World War I, Arthur James Balfour penned the Balfour Declaration which set the stage for British support of a Jewish homeland:

His Majesty's Government view with favour the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people, and will use their best endeavours to facilitate the achievement of this object, it being clearly understood that nothing shall be done which may prejudice the civil and religious rights of existing non-Jewish communities in Palestine, or the rights and political status enjoyed by Jews in any other country.

Since dispensational premillennialism had already established itself as a part of the evangelical mainstream, it was only a matter of time before U.S. politicians who had been born and raised in that evangelical tradition began to let their theology affect their political ideology. In 1919, President Woodrow Wilson signaled his approval of the Balfour Declaration when he said, "The allied nations with the fullest concurrence of our government and people are agreed that in Palestine shall be laid the foundations of a Jewish Commonwealth."

American politicians have continued to voice their strong support for Israel, though little has been mentioned as to why Israel is such an important ally. But that really isn't the issue I want to explore. What seems to be driving the U.S.-Israel relationship, as far as evangelical Christians are concerned, is the popular belief that the nation of Israel still plays an important role in prophecy, and those not wanting to be caught facing the business end of God's wrathful sword come Judgment Day are pushing for more U.S. involvement in the Middle East. About the only reasons we hear are that we have a "moral obligation" to stand behind Israel or that it's simply "the right thing to do."

Dispensational premillennialists typically quote the Book of Psalms when speaking of our "obligation" to support Israel. "Pray for the peace of Jerusalem: 'May they prosper who love you'" (Ps. 122:6). This passage has been accepted by many Christians as a universal command by which all believers are bound to pray for the physical city of Jerusalem, lest they fall out of favor with God. Of course, that isn't the case.

While it may be good and practical to pray for the peace of modern Jerusalem, we should really be praying for peace all across the world—the peace that can only come about through the Good News of Jesus Christ. So, in a spiritual sense, Psalm 122 does apply to Christians today. We should pray for the peace of the spiritual Jerusalem, the church (Heb. 12:22), for the well-being of our brothers and sisters in Christ and the furtherance of the Gospel.

Many Christians, however, are too wrapped up in their flawed eschatology to realize that their first responsibility is to the church, the body of Christ, and not to a nation of unbelievers. As a result, eyes glance up in anticipation at the eastern sky every time Israel is mentioned in the media, and the practice of interpreting Scripture through newspaper headlines becomes commonplace.

It is interesting to see the ensuing pandemonium among evangelical Christians brought about by rumors of war in the Middle East. Believers ignore sound biblical instruction and start buying up extra copies of Left Behind to use as witnessing tools for reaching their non-believing friends. Christian columnists all across America crank out editorial pieces on the Jews' divine claim to the Holy Land and the importance of remaining steadfast in our nation's support of Israel. Jack Van Impe goes on television with an air of righteous vindication and says, "See? My latest reinterpretation of my previous reinterpretation of Revelation was correct! The time of Christ's coming in the clouds is fast approaching!"

Who can blame these Christians for becoming so enraptured (no pun intended) with the idea of being whisked away in the blink of an eye while the world is left to fester for seven years in its own evil juices? It is comforting for people to believe that they will escape tribulation when the end comes.

But ask anyone who holds to the premillennialist view what Christ had in mind when he proclaimed, "Assuredly, I say to you, this generation will by no means pass away till all these things take place" (Matt. 24:34). Ask them what the apostle Paul meant when he said, "For they are not all Israel who are of Israel, nor are they all children because they are the seed of Abraham" (Rom. 9:6b-7a). Ask them why God felt it was necessary to establish a New Covenant (Heb. 8) if the Old Covenant is yet to be fulfilled. Chances are the answers you receive will be less than satisfactory.

The truth is that the covenant God had with Israel finds its fulfillment in Christ. "And if you are Christ's," Paul reminds us, "then you are Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise" (Gal. 3:29). Advocating an "End of the World Is Near" gospel that appeals to gullible Christians and poll-driven politicians cannot be edifying for the body of Christ. If anything, it detracts from the work the Son of God already accomplished through his death and resurrection.

I certainly do not hold myself up as a theologian or biblical scholar, but it doesn't take one to see that the premillennialist paradigm is rather precarious. When a fundamental part of our foreign policy is based on a shaky biblical exegesis and championed by the very people who should know better, it gives one reason to question the immediate future of our nation.

At least we can rest in the fact that God is ultimately in control. His true chosen people, those who confess Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior, will not be forsaken, and the glory of the Almighty will shine forth for all the world to see.


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1 posted on 06/05/2002 11:51:10 AM PDT by sheltonmac
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To: sola gracia; Thinkin' Gal; Jerry_M; Askel5; enemy of the people; nightdriver; Precisian...
*
2 posted on 06/05/2002 11:52:36 AM PDT by sheltonmac
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To: sheltonmac
Right from the start, he errs in saying God is no longer dealng with Israel. All else is immaterial after this.
3 posted on 06/05/2002 11:57:49 AM PDT by RaceBannon
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To: sheltonmac; 2sheep; Jeremiah Jr; Prodigal Daughter
I happen to be one of those evangelical Christians who believe that God is no longer dealing with national Israel and that His chosen people are those who comprise the church

And they knew not until the flood came...

4 posted on 06/05/2002 12:08:18 PM PDT by Thinkin' Gal
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To: sheltonmac
One reason I support Israel is because of my religious beliefs, but even if I were an atheist, Muslim, or whatever I would support Israel because it is a democratic nation surrounded by dictactorships that hate me, my country, and everything that I hold near and dear. Israel stands on the front line defending the West from the horde.

Anyone that thinks if Israel would just go quietly into the night that the Arabs/Muslims of the world would live peacefully with everyone else is either a fool or blind. They would then turn their full attention to destroying us.
5 posted on 06/05/2002 12:08:22 PM PDT by mikesmad
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To: sheltonmac, sola gracia, Thinkin' Gal, Jerry_M, Askel5, enemy of the people, nightdriver, Precisian
"PREMILINIAL" etc. is something I haven't observed anyone to have remotely all figured out yet--I STRONGLY SUSPECT ALMIGHTY FATHER BEING A GREAT GENERAL AS WELL is not ready for any mortal to have it all figured out yet.

Personally, I find your contentions MUCH MORE at odds WITH FATHER'S CLEAR STATEMENTS than those of the typical spokesperson you decry. Messages to follow will somewhat illustrate the point.

Perhaps Scripture will have little impact on your reasoning but I like the Scriptures in the following on the topics touched on above.

"ONLY WHEN DAY AND NIGHT CEASE --ONLY THEN WILL ISRAEL CEASE TO BE A NATION BEFORE ME!"

By Steve Shultz steve@elijahlist.com

Can you imagine how utterly angry, furious, and LIVID Satan must have been to hear God speak through the prophet Jeremiah about Israel's enduring future. . .

Jeremiah: 31: 35-36 "This is what the LORD says, he who appoints the sun to shine by day, who decrees the moon and stars to shine by night, who stirs up the sea so that its waves roar--the LORD Almighty is his name: 36 "ONLY IF THESE DECREES VANISH FROM MY SIGHT," declares the LORD," will the descendants of Israel EVER CEASE TO BE A NATION BEFORE ME."

Not only does the prophecy say Israel will continue, but that it will ALWAYS continue AS A NATION!!
. . .
Further, just as the cross of Jesus made a public spectacle of Satan's defeat, the Lord, even in the Old Testament wanted to rub Satan's nose in it. So he continues, through Jeremiah, the above prophecy by restating the fact in this amazing way, saying that this promise will endure, even if Israel's sin continues for a season . . .

Jeremiah 31: 37 "This is what the LORD says: 'Only if the heavens above can be measured and the foundations of the earth below be searched out will I reject all the descendants of Israel BECAUSE OF ALL THEY HAVE DONE," declares the LORD.

Remember, in the previous verse (vs. 36) God's promise through Jeremiah is that Israel will continue AS A NATION and it will continue, even though others would accuse [DO YOU--Aleksandar Vojvoda, jlogajan, trevorjohnson--REALLY want to be included in that "others"????] "But Look at all the sins they have committed!"

---------------------------------
IS JEREMIAH'S PROPHECY FOR TODAY?
---------------------------------

DO YOU KNOW WHERE THIS PROMISE, THIS DECREE-- WAS GIVEN?

That's right, it's part of the NEW COVENANT. . . THE FAMOUS NEW COVENANT ..stated a few verses before.

Would you like to read it ALL in context?

Jer 31:33-32:1

(33) "THE IS THE COVENANT I WILL MAKE WITH THE HOUSE OF ISRAEL AFTER THAT TIME," declares the LORD." I will put my law in their minds and write it on their hearts. I will be their God, and they will be my people. (34) No longer will a man teach his neighbor, or a man his brother, saying, 'Know the LORD,' because they will all know me, from the least of them to the greatest," declares the LORD." For I will forgive their wickedness and will remember their sins no more."

(35) This is what the LORD says, he who appoints the sun to shine by day, who decrees the moon and stars to shine by night, who stirs up the sea so that its waves roar--the LORD Almighty is his name: (36) "Only if these decrees vanish from my sight," declares the LORD, "WILL THE DESCENDANTS OF ISRAEL EVER CEASE TO BE A NATION BEFORE ME. (37) This is what the LORD says: "Only if the heavens above can be measured and the foundations of the earth below be searched out will I reject all the descendants of Israel BECAUSE OF ALL THEY HAVE DONE," declares the LORD.

(38) "The days are coming," declares the LORD, "when this city will be rebuilt for me from the Tower of Hananel to the Corner Gate. (39) The measuring line will stretch from there straight to the hill of Gareb and then turn to Goah. (40) The whole valley where dead bodies and ashes are thrown, and all the terraces out to the Kidron Valley on the east as far as the corner of the Horse Gate, will be holy to the LORD. The city will never again be uprooted or demolished."

-----------------------------------------------------------
JESUS, YESHUA, THE MESSIAH -- DIED FOR THE NATION OF ISRAEL
-----------------------------------------------------------

Jesus, the Jewish Carpenter -- came to die for Jew and Gentile alike. But he clarified to the "woman at the well" that salvation is of the Jews." And so it is. Israel-- the Jewish people, hold a very dear and special place in the Lord's heart. Jesus stood looking down upon Jerusalem and wept that they did not recognize His coming. But HE prophesied that they WOULD recognize Him when He came again. He prophesied . . .

"I tell YOU, YOU [Jerusalem and the Jewish people, as a NATION] you will not see me again until you say, 'Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.'" Luke 13:35

A few days later, at the crucifixion of the Jewish Jesus at the hands of both Gentile and Jew, the High Priest prophesied (without intending it) that Jesus had died for the NATION of Israel. But don't take my word for it . . .

"Then one of them, named Caiaphas, who was HIGH PRIEST that year, spoke up, "You know nothing at all! You do not realize that it is better for you that ONE MAN DIE FOR THE PEOPLE than that the WHOLE NATION PERISH." John 11:49-50

Even the High Priest knew
that the death of Yeshua would save the
NATION of ISRAEL.

-----------------------------------------------
HOW WILL ISRAEL LOOK TO GOD'S DELIVERANCE --- WITH THE PASSOVER CELEBRATION IN MIND
------------------------------------------------

Jeremiah is talking again. A few chapters earlier. He is prophesying about the days we are living.

Jeremiah is essentially speaking into the time NOW, when Israel and the Palestinians are fighting and most of the world opinion has turned against Israel. He's comparing and contrasting when people celebrate the PASSOVER--and what their celebration will EVENTUALLY include!!

At the PASSOVER, Jews around the world declare and remember God's faithfulness in rescuing and delivering Israel from slavery in Egypt. But Jeremiah, speaking of how the Passover celebrates this great deliverance ---- prophesies that the time is coming in the future (the future we are NOW COMING INTO) when Israel will no longer celebrate the Passover as the greatest event but they will celebrate a future DELIVERANCE as the greatest event. Read it for yourself . . .

----------------------------------------
A GREATER DELIVERANCE THAN FROM EGYPT?
----------------------------------------

"So then, the days are coming," declares the LORD, "when people will no longer say, 'As surely as the LORD lives, who brought the Israelites up out of Egypt,' 8 but they will say, 'As surely as the LORD lives, who brought the descendants of Israel up out of the land of the north and out of all the countries where he had banished them.' Then they will live in their own land." Jer 23:7-8

---------------------------------------------
THE WAR ISRAEL IS IN -- IS BECAUSE THE ABOVE
PROPHECY IS BEING FULFILLED BEFORE OUR EYES
[THAT IS, THE EYES OPEN BY BEING *WILLING* TO SEE]
---------------------------------------------

Jews are coming home by the hundreds of thousands! Satan is furious. He does not want this prophecy to be fulfilled. More are coming. Millions more. Even from the other countries around the world, they are coming to Israel.

And Satan HATES it!! He is doing all in his power to stir up hatred and war against Israel. He is trying to turn world opinion against them. He is doing it through false accusation and in some cases true accusations. As in any war, neither side is completely virtuous. But as we showed above, God's promise of deliverance is NOT BASED ON THE VIRTUE OF ISRAEL, BUT IS BASED ON HIS PROMISE AND DESIRE TO RESTORE THEM. Therefore . . .

This war is not against flesh and blood but against Principalities and Powers.

There are many innocent victims on both sides of this conflict, Palestinian and Israeli. But this thing is being orchestrated by Satan -- He wants Ishmael and Isaac in a war --brother to brother.

What is the part of Christians to pray?

--------------------------------------
THIS WAR IS ABOUT THE JEWS COMING HOME
--------------------------------------

We must pray against this war. It may break out but we must pray that it will NOT break out --outside of the Lord's timing.

And we must pray that there will be reconciliation between Jews and Palestinians--- Because this war is not about those two sides except that the Lord's desire is to bring reconciliation to these brothers, Ishmael and Isaac.

But make no mistake... This war is about the Jews coming home according to the prophet Jeremiah and all the major prophets--and it's about Satan wanting to wipe the Jewish people off the map by driving them into the sea.

Finally, we must pray that all Christians---- and America, will stand with Israel, THOUGH THE HEAVENS FALL! Remember, Jesus died for his own Jewish people and for the NATION of Israel too (not just the Church). And because His blood is at work, He will bring correction to their sins, and shortcomings.

But Israel's sins HAVE NOT and WILL NOT nullify the promises of God.

---------------------
REMEMBER THE PROMISE:
---------------------

"This is what the LORD says: 'Only if the heavens above can be measured and the foundations of the earth below be searched out will I reject all the descendants of Israel BECAUSE OF ALL THEY HAVE DONE," declares the LORD. Jeremiah 31: 37

Pray too for America --- for in standing with Israel, or not ---- AMERICA WILL DECIDE HER FUTURE!

Pray for the peace of Jerusalem: "MAY THOSE WHO LOVE YOU BE SECURE [and May America love Israel] May there be peace within your walls and security within your citadels." For the sake of MY BROTHERS AND FRIENDS I will say, "Peace be within you." For the sake of the house of the LORD our God, I will seek your prosperity. Ps 122:6-9

OF COURSE, if you think all the above is nonsense about events long since historically past; 100% totally ended period—then you are welcome to try yawning through events coming up shortly.

But I wouldn’t recommend it.

For one, Father may have some feelings about willfully refusing to believe that He meant what He said and said what He meant.

For another, I suspect events may quite soon enough become more dramatic than yawns would be fitting for. 9/11 was just a warm-up. IF you’d REALLY like to test your contentions at the cost of 10’s of thousands of more American lives, I suppose you could lobby hard for us to dump Israel on it’s tin ear. Israel would not end up suffering beyond their period of coming discipline for being so apostate. Father God will insist that they are protected as a NATION and as a people even if He has to clone additional children of Abraham from hairs in his tomb or create millions more legions of angels.

But if you prefer, please don’t allow my pontificating to disturb your sleep, sleep on. . . . while you can.

6 posted on 06/05/2002 12:43:17 PM PDT by Quix
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To: sheltonmac
Many Christians, however, are too wrapped up in their flawed eschatology to realize that their first responsibility is to the church, the body of Christ, and not to a nation of unbelievers. As a result, eyes glance up in anticipation at the eastern sky every time Israel is mentioned in the media, and the practice of interpreting Scripture through newspaper headlines becomes commonplace.

This author's sanctimonious opinions not only are ignorant of eschatology, they are ignorant of Scripture as well. The Biblical reasons to support Israel are numerous, and end-time prophecy does not even enter the picture for most Evangelical Christians.

1. The first principle for all Biblical understanding is that G-d is immutable. That means that He never changes His mind, and He never goes back on His Word. He promised Abraham a Seed and a Land FOR ETERNITY.

2. Replacement theology has permeated the Evangelical community for over 100 years, and yet even in those denominations where it is the strongest, there is support for Israel (example: Presbyterian and Lutheran) - and those denominations are not strong on eschatology at all, and if they are they trend AGAINST premellinialisim. So much for that part of this specious arguement.

3. Replacement theology is one of the most dangerous trends of the reformation. It in effect "voids" G-d's covenants with the Nation of Israel - but expects G-d to honor His "unconditional" covenant with individual believers. Wholesale removal of pages of the Bible are necessary to support this heresy.

"Thus says the Lord: “If heaven above can be measured, And the foundations of the earth searched out beneath, I will also cast off all the seed of Israel For all that they have done, says the Lord." Jeremiah 31:37

And for those of you who believe the lie, "Israel is the Church and the Church is Israel" in a mystic sense, the word "seed" should get your attention.

"Have you not considered what these people have spoken, saying, 'The two families which the Lord has chosen, He has also cast them off’? Thus they have despised My people, as if they should no more be a nation before them."; Thus says the Lord: 'If My covenant is not with day and night, and if I have not appointed the ordinances of heaven and earth, then I will cast away the descendants of Jacob and David My servant, so that I will not take any of his descendants to be rulers over the descendants of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. For I will cause their captives to return, and will have mercy on them.’" Jeremiah 33:24-26

This is talking about the Nation and People of Israel. As well, this prophecy and its accompanying curse apply to those who claim that "G-d is finished with Israel"... so beware. No, most Evangelical Christians know that Jesus is a Jew. They know that all 12 of His disciples are Jews. They know that Paul is a Jew. They know that the gifts and callings of God are irrevocable (Romans 11:29) - no matter what some "replacment theology" anti-semites might say...

The author needs to spend a little more time in Romans and Deuteronomy before claiming that Israel is no longer at the center of God's plan.
7 posted on 06/05/2002 12:46:57 PM PDT by safisoft
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To: sheltonmac
BTW,

Many, if not all, of the key points of the typical END TIMES positions have been reliably traced back to the early Christian Church of the first few decades--few hundred years. The Darby, 19th century claim is not giving the full facts by a significant margin.

8 posted on 06/05/2002 12:51:44 PM PDT by Quix
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To: sheltonmac, sola gracia, Thinkin' Gal, Jerry_M, Askel5, enemy of the people, nightdriver, Precisian
BTW,

MY BIBLE indicates to me that my first responsibility is to LOVE GOD WHOLLY and my 2nd to Love my neighbor as myself.

The Church in terms of an organization or even in terms of the Church Universal is a ways down my list.

In terms of Loving God and Honoring Him, I figure honoring, supporting, blessing those/that NATION HE SAID TO BLESS is a good way to make Him smile. I'm really into causing Him to smile.

9 posted on 06/05/2002 12:57:01 PM PDT by Quix
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To: sheltonmac
AND BESIDES ALL THAT . . .

I *******KNOW******* what I felt deep and intensely in my spirit when the bus drove me into Jerusalem the first time. That experience trumps a very long list of arguments.

If you think Jerusalem's being a burden for the whole world is not a fulfillment of Biblical prophecy, you might consider getting your logic RPM's adjusted. They just don't seem to be going around fast enough to cope with the data.

10 posted on 06/05/2002 1:01:34 PM PDT by Quix
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To: mikesmad
I have to admit that I've moved away from the dispensationalist eschatological view somewhat in the course of my studies, but that has not changed my view on the importance of supporting Israel. I agree that it's foolish to think that allowing Israel, a sovereign democratic nation, to be destroyed would not be the end of Arab violence. Israel holds tremendous strategic importance to the United States, especially in light of recent events.
11 posted on 06/05/2002 1:09:08 PM PDT by Frumanchu
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To: Quix
Are you trying to impress the folks here at FR with your fonts and colors, or are you trying to guarantee your seat on the rapture bus by impressing God?

Regards

J.R.

12 posted on 06/05/2002 1:16:24 PM PDT by NMC EXP
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To: Quix; Jeremiah Jr; 2sheep; Prodigal Daughter; Simcha7; InvisibleChurch; crystalk
5359 Philadelpheia {fil-ad-el'-fee-ah}
 from Philadelphos (the same as 5361); TDNT - 1:144,*; n pr loc
 AV - Philadelphia 2; 2

 Philadelphia = "brotherly love"
 1) a city of Lydia in Asia Minor, situated near the eastern base of
    of Mount Tmolus, founded and named by the Pergamene king, Attalus
    II Philadelphus. After the death of Attalus III Philometor, 133 BC,
    it together with his entire kingdom came by his will under the
    jurisdiction of the Romans.

>>>

 5361 philadelphos {fil-ad'-el-fos}
 from 5384 and 80; TDNT - 1:144,22; adj
 AV - love as brethren 1; 1

 1) loving brother or sister
 2) in a broader sense, loving one like a brother, loving one's fellow
    countrymen
    2a) of an Israelite
    2b) of a Christian loving Christians

Also there's:

 5360 philadelphia {fil-ad-el-fee'-ah}
 from 5361; TDNT - 1:144,22; n f
 AV - brotherly love 3, brotherly kindness 2, love of the brethren 1; 6

 1) love of brothers or sisters, brotherly love
 2) in the NT the love which Christians cherish for each other as brethren


>>>

 5384 philos {fee'-los}
 a primitive word; TDNT - 9:146,1262; adj
 AV - friend 29; 29

 1) friend, to be friendly to one, wish him well
    1a) a friend
    1b) an associate
    1c) he who associates familiarly with one, a companion
    1d) one of the bridegroom's friends who on his behalf asked the
        hand of the bride and rendered him various services in closing
        the marriage and celebrating the nuptials

Ezekiel 37:16-20

16 Moreover, thou son of man, take thee one stick, and write upon it, For
Judah, and for the children of Israel his companions [2270]: then take
another stick, and write upon it, For Joseph, the stick of Ephraim, and for
all the house of Israel his companions [2270]:
17 And join them one to another into one stick; and they shall become one in
thine hand
.
18 And when the children of thy people shall speak unto thee, saying, Wilt
thou not shew us what thou meanest by these?
19 Say unto them, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I will take the stick of
Joseph, which is in the hand of Ephraim, and the tribes of Israel his
fellows [2270], and will put them with him, even with the stick of Judah,
and make them one stick, and they shall be one in mine hand.
20 And the sticks whereon thou writest shall be in thine hand before their
eyes.

 02270 chaber {khaw-bare'}
 from 02266; TWOT - 598c
 AV - companions 7, fellow 4, knit together 1; 12

 adj
 1) united
 n m
 2) associate, fellow, worshippers
 3) companion

Modern Hebrew [chaver] 1 friend, comrade. 2 partner, associate. 3 fellow,
member. 4 scholar

>>>

 02266 chabar {khaw-bar'}
 a primitive root; TWOT - 598; v
 AV - couple 8, join 8, couple together 4, join together 3, compact 1,
      charmer + 02267 1, charming + 02267 1, have fellowship 1, league 1,
      heap up 1; 29

 1) to unite, join, bind together, be joined, be coupled, be in
    league, heap up, have fellowship with, be compact, be a charmer
    1a) (Qal)
        1a1) to unite, be joined
        1a2) to tie magic charms, charm
    1b) (Piel)
        1b1) to unite with, make an ally of
        1b2) to unite, join, ally
    1c) (Pual)
        1c1) to be allied with, be united
        1c2) to be joined together
    1d) (Hiphil) to join together, pile up (words)
    1e) (Hithpael) to join oneself to, make an alliance, league together

***

Modern Hebrew lit. "hand + hand" (yad + yad) = [yadid] 1 friend. 2 beloved.

 03039 y@diyd {yed-eed'}
 from the same as 01730; TWOT - 846a
 AV - beloved 5, wellbeloved 2, loves 1, amiable 1; 9
 n m
 1) one beloved, beloved
 adj
 2) lovely


3039 from the same as 01730...

 01730 dowd {dode} or (shortened) dod {dode}
 from an unused root meaning properly, to boil; TWOT - 410a; n m
 AV - beloved 34, uncle 16, love(s) 8, father's brother 2,
      wellbeloved 1; 61

 1) beloved, love, uncle
    1a) loved one, beloved
    1b) uncle
    1c) love (pl. abstract)

Compare (same spelling, dalet vav dalet):

 01732 David {daw-veed'} rarely (fully); Daviyd {daw-veed'}
 from the same as 01730; TWOT - 410c; n pr m
 AV - David 1076; 1076

 David = "beloved"
 1) youngest son of Jesse and second king of Israel

Revelation 3:7 And to the angel of the church in Philadelphia write; These things saith he that is holy, he that is true, he that hath the key of David, he that openeth, and no man shutteth; and shutteth, and no man openeth;
Revelation 3:8 I know thy works: behold, I have set before thee an open door, and no man can shut it: for thou hast a little strength, and hast kept my word, and hast not denied my name.

YHWH + the letter dalet ("door") spells Yehuda.

from TWOT #431e:

delet is to be differentiated from other words of aproximately the same meaning. In relation to sha'ar "gate", delet represents only the swinging door, while sha'ar denotes the entire structure of the gate. In relation to petah "door, entrance", petah is the entrance to the house. delet is a device for closing and opening the entrance. Also, delet is used only in connection with a built house.

13 posted on 06/05/2002 1:27:00 PM PDT by Thinkin' Gal
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To: sheltonmac
Many Christians, however, are too wrapped up in their flawed eschatology to realize that their first responsibility is to the church, the body of Christ, and not to a nation of unbelievers. As a result ... the practice of interpreting Scripture through newspaper headlines becomes commonplace.

Thanks for a breath of sanity! I believe we can accurately call the sensationalist doom-mongers of the early '70s the "abortionists of the Jesus movement." When millions of fervant, zealous new believers appeared on the American scene, the devil was ready to shunt their energies off into puerile, silly, stupid speculations. And of course, the devil really approves of an ideology which cedes to him the right to run the whole earth!

The tragedy is, so much ink is spilled, so much energy wasted, on these fools errands today. O God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, grant that our children may live to see the end of this curse, this blight, this "last days madness" upon Your people!

14 posted on 06/05/2002 1:40:35 PM PDT by TomSmedley
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To: Quix
If your logic is weak, scream loudly with big letters and bright colors. (I am not impressed.)
15 posted on 06/05/2002 1:42:03 PM PDT by TomSmedley
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To: Frumanchu
I have to admit that I've moved away from the dispensationalist eschatological view somewhat in the course of my studies ...

I did a survey on an "end times" discussion board last month, to determine the direction of change. A few die-hard dispensationalists said they'd not changed their eschatological expectations. A larger number of godly and scholarly folks spoke of having left dispensensationalism behind.

There were zero respondents who had moved from biblical postmillenialism to dispensensationalism.

Among literate and thinking Christians, the trend is clear. Among those who substitute emotion, shouting, and incantations for thought, their hysteria is evidence of the perceived weakness of their position.

16 posted on 06/05/2002 1:48:04 PM PDT by TomSmedley
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To: Quix
Thank you for all your colorful comments, but you skillfully avoided some key passages mentioned in the article:
"Assuredly, I say to you, this generation will by no means pass away till all these things take place" (Matt. 24:34).

This is from the chapter in Matthew that dispensational premillennialists refer to when talking about the Great Tribulation.

"For they are not all Israel who are of Israel, nor are they all children because they are the seed of Abraham" (Rom. 9:6b-7a).

Translation: The true Israel is not necessarily made up of biological Jews. Paul tells us in Romans 2:29, "But he is a Jew who is one inwardly; and circumcision is that of the heart, in the Spirit, not in the letter."

"And if you are Christ's, then you are Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise" (Gal. 3:29).

Translation: All believers in Christ are Abraham's seed (i.e., Christians belong to the true Israel.)

God's promises are not null and void. They were fulfilled in Christ. As the nation of Israel was once the bearer of God's light to the world, the church is now that "holy nation" (1 Peter 2:9).
17 posted on 06/05/2002 1:50:17 PM PDT by sheltonmac
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To: sheltonmac
I always find it funny that people like to believe the prophecies concerning the Messiah that are fulfilled in Jesus, believe that Jesus is truely who He said He is - the Son of God, with the full divinity as the Father Himself who forgives sin and will judge man (Mat 7:22-23) and then conveniently toss out the Hebrew scriptures because we have a "new covenant". Yet the reason many Jews didn't believe Jesus was the Messiah was because of all of the "Son of David" Messianic prophecies in which the Messiah will rule and reign from Jerusalem with a rod of iron (Psalm 2:9; Rev 2:27) and all of the nations shall come to Him and receive instruction. (Isa 11:10; Rom 15:12) That even if they don't celebrate the Feast of Tabernacles "Sukkot" they won't receive any rain. (Zach 14:18). These same people would then discount the prophetic picture as shown in the Feasts (in which the first 4 have been literally fulfilled on the very day of the feast) not realizing that the word Feast means rehersal of things to come (so just who was the Passover Lamb that John the Baptist and Revelation refer to?). The next Feast which lasts for 2 days is the Feast of Trumpets (because no man knows the exact day the feast begins is celebrated for 2 days) in which the trumpet calls the people to repentance. At this Feast there is a judgment that is made in which the fates of true righteous is sealed as well as the true wicked but for the masses who are not sure the go through the 10 days of Awe. Then the judgment is made of the seperation of the goats (depart from me you worker of iniquity Mat 7:23) and the sheep (Mat 25:21) on the Day of Atonement "Yom Kippur" Then comes the only Feast in which the Jews and Gentiles participate in (and is commended to be celebrated in the 1000 year kingdom reign of Christ) is the Feast of Tabernacles "Sukkot" in which the final harvest is revealed to the Lord and you live in temporary houses.

But ask anyone who holds to the premillennialist view what Christ had in mind when he proclaimed, "Assuredly, I say to you, this generation will by no means pass away till all these things take place" (Matt. 24:34).

Did Jesus come already and I missed it? How about this comment from Jesus: "Mat 16:28 Verily I say unto you, There be some standing here, which shall not taste of death, till they see the Son of man coming in his kingdom."
What happened when James, John and Peter witnessed Jesus who was transfigured into full glory on the mountain (Mat 17:2) with Moses (the righteous dead in Christ) and Elijah (those caught up with Christ) (1Th 4:16-17)

Ask them what the apostle Paul meant when he said, "For they are not all Israel who are of Israel, nor are they all children because they are the seed of Abraham" (Rom. 9:6b-7a).

Ask them what the apostle Paul meant when he said,
"Rom 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.
Rom 11:26 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:
Rom 11:27 For this [is] my covenant unto them, when I shall take away their sins.
Rom 11:28 As concerning the gospel, [they are] enemies for your sakes: but as touching the election, [they are] beloved for the fathers' sakes.
Rom 11:29 For the gifts and calling of God [are] without repentance.
Rom 11:30 For as ye in times past have not believed God, yet have now obtained mercy through their unbelief:
Rom 11:31 Even so have these also now not believed, that through your mercy they also may obtain mercy.
Rom 11:32 For God hath concluded them all in unbelief, that he might have mercy upon all."


Ask them why God felt it was necessary to establish a New Covenant (Heb. 8) if the Old Covenant is yet to be fulfilled. Chances are the answers you receive will be less than satisfactory.

Because only by the tranaction by the Lamb of God receiving our sin and innocent blood of the Lamb Jesus inparts to us His righteousness. But the fullfilment of the scriptures concerning the Messiah ben David (Lion of the tribe of Judah) have yet to be fulfilled!
18 posted on 06/05/2002 1:53:44 PM PDT by 4Him
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To: Thinkin' Gal
Revelation follows the Hebrew aleph-bet.
Aleph = 1, one and only God, beginning,... = Rev 1 Jesus is the Alpha (Aleph) and Omega (Tav)

Bet = 2, house, marriage,... = Rev 2 the bride of Christ, the Church

Gimmal = 3, completion,... = Rev 3 the completion of the Church age

Dalet = 4, universal, door = Rev 4:1 After this I looked, and, behold, a door [was] opened in heaven: and the first voice which I heard [was] as it were of a trumpet talking with me; which said, Come up hither, and I will shew thee things which must be hereafter.
Rev 4:2 And immediately I was in the spirit: and, behold, a throne was set in heaven, and [one] sat on the throne.

Sounds like a Rapture to me!
19 posted on 06/05/2002 2:00:37 PM PDT by 4Him
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To: sheltonmac
While I would agree with your theology, I must disagree with your politics. Israel should be supported politically and militarily based solely upon the fact that they are one of the few democracies in that part of the world. Freedom is a good thing. :o)
20 posted on 06/05/2002 2:17:17 PM PDT by webwide
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To: 4Him; 2sheep; Jeremiah Jr; babylonian; Prodigal Daughter
the completion of the Church age

2 Thessalonians 2:1-5

1 Now we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by our gathering together unto him,
2 That ye be not soon shaken in mind, or be troubled, neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by letter as from us, as that the day of Christ is at hand.
3 Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away* first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition;
4 Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God.
5 Remember ye not, that, when I was yet with you, I told you these things?

falling away:

646 apostasia {ap-os-tas-ee'-ah}
feminine of the same as 647; TDNT - 1:513,88; n f
AV - to forsake + 575 1, falling away 1; 2

1) a falling away, defection, apostasy

feminine of the same as 647...

647 apostasion {ap-os-tas'-ee-on}
neuter of a (presumed) adj. from a derivative of 868;; n n
AV - divorcement 2, writing of divorcement 1; 3

1) divorce, repudiation
2) a bill of divorce

***

Cause and effect.

1st century:

Acts 28:25-28

25 And when they agreed not among themselves, they departed, after that Paul had spoken one word, Well spake the Holy Ghost by Esaias the prophet unto our fathers,
26 Saying, Go unto this people, and say, Hearing ye shall hear, and shall not understand; and seeing ye shall see, and not perceive:
27 For the heart of this people is waxed gross, and their ears are dull of hearing, and their eyes have they closed; lest they should see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and understand with their heart, and should be converted, and I should heal them.
28 Be it known therefore unto you, that the salvation [Yesha] of God is sent unto the Gentiles, and that they will hear it.
29 And when he had said these words, the Jews departed, and had great reasoning among themselves.

21st century:

And when they agreed not among themselves, they departed, after that Paul had spoken one word, Well spake the Holy Ghost by Esaias the prophet unto our fathers,
Saying, Go unto this people, and say, Hearing ye shall hear, and shall not understand; and seeing ye shall see, and not perceive:
For the heart of this people is waxed gross, and their ears are dull of hearing, and their eyes have they closed; lest they should see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and understand with their heart, and should be converted, and I should heal them.
Be it known therefore unto you, that the salvation [Yesha] of God is sent unto the JEWS, and that they will hear it.
And when he had said these words, the CHURCH departed, and had great reasoning among themselves.

He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches.

21 posted on 06/05/2002 2:25:58 PM PDT by Thinkin' Gal
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To: 4Him
Rev 4:2 And immediately I was in the spirit: and, behold, a throne was set in heaven, and [one] sat on the throne. Sounds like a Rapture to me!

You're definitely getting something between the lines here that I just don't see. I don't see how this scripture and that preceeding it even can be made to relate to the rapture.

22 posted on 06/05/2002 3:01:20 PM PDT by RobRoy
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To: sheltonmac
Absolutely, perfectly, completely right on the money.
23 posted on 06/05/2002 4:07:48 PM PDT by Campion
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To: sheltonmac
Matt.24:34 "this generation =(age) shall not pass away"
24 posted on 06/05/2002 5:45:46 PM PDT by moteineye
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To: Campion
Absolutely wrong. Replacement theology is not Biblical and is anti-Semitic. God is not finished with the Jews. We (the church) are but grafted in branches. Read the Bible sometime for yourself and stop believing everything you are told (whether true or not).
25 posted on 06/05/2002 6:44:23 PM PDT by Iowegian
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To: sheltonmac
Curb your pride Lee.
26 posted on 06/05/2002 6:46:10 PM PDT by exnavy
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To: safisoft
#7 Excellent post. I await a rebuttal from the nay-sayers. I'm guessing they won't even try.
27 posted on 06/05/2002 6:52:32 PM PDT by Iowegian
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To: Iowegian
Read the Bible sometime for yourself and stop believing everything you are told (whether true or not).

Good advice. Try it. I usually try to read thru the NT in Greek every other year or so. It's missing those strange little Schofield footnotes, tho, so I guess it's not complete. Unlike you, I do not view evangelism as an invitation to join the losing team, and become a doormat for Jesus. My Lord rules, in both the Biblical and contemporary colloquial sense of that word. Sorry about your crippled and stinted conception of Jesus and His work.

28 posted on 06/05/2002 6:54:40 PM PDT by TomSmedley
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To: exnavy
???????????
29 posted on 06/05/2002 6:56:02 PM PDT by sheltonmac
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To: sheltonmac
"God is no longer dealing with national Isreal" It is a prideful man who thinks he can predict Gods actions.
30 posted on 06/05/2002 6:59:56 PM PDT by exnavy
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To: webwide
CERTAINLY that's a sufficient, valid, wise reason.

I just don't think it's the only one.

31 posted on 06/05/2002 7:05:19 PM PDT by Quix
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To: TomSmedley
Excuse me??? Try again, but this time, please actually address some points, like those made very eloquently in post # 7, instead of whatever that was. My points were directed where they were for a reason and don't necessarily apply to you. But thanks for the reply.
32 posted on 06/05/2002 7:08:19 PM PDT by Iowegian
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To: 4Him
THANKS for your post. It just boggles my mind that people could read the same Bible and construe such a long, long list of clearly never fulfilled Scriptures as having been fulfilled eons ago. Wish fulfilllment?

And the idea that we are somehow shoehorning this horridly sin beleagured world into the Peaceful perfect world of Christ's soon coming reign . . . it really boggles my mind.

Thankfully, God has never been restrained in the least by those who failed to believe He said what He meant and meant what He said.

33 posted on 06/05/2002 7:10:33 PM PDT by Quix
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To: sheltonmac
It is perfectly plausible to construe the Scripture about "this generation" as:

(A) the generation that sees Israeli's returning to Israel from their dispersion SINCE CALVARY--THAT GENERATION SEEING ISRAELI'S RETURN TO ISRAEL--SHALL ALSO SEE THE REST OF THE END TIME SCRIPTURES FULFILLED. . . . a perfectly plausible, logical interpretation. . . one that best fits the language and context, to my mind.

(B) Another plausible interpretation is that "this generation" can be translated "people group"--this people group shall not cease to exist until all the rest of the end time stuff is fulfilled.

I'm still trying to even imagine what emotional, theological, psycho-dynamic--ANY-reason there might be for your interpretation. . . it's still hard for me to explain.

34 posted on 06/05/2002 7:14:45 PM PDT by Quix
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To: TomSmedley
An alternate explanation for the phenomenon you described is that those hostile to this era being Biblical end times are greatly more stubborn, rigid and narrow than other folk.

Given God's attitude toward stubbornness, it's not exactly a feather in one's cap.

35 posted on 06/05/2002 7:16:43 PM PDT by Quix
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To: sheltonmac
>>> God's promises are not null and void. They were fulfilled in Christ. <<<

I think He even managed to tell us that he came to fulfill the law (Matt 5:17).

Then for emphasis: "It is finished.(John 19:30)"

36 posted on 06/05/2002 7:19:26 PM PDT by OwenKellogg
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To: TomSmedley
I don't have the slightest need for you to be impressed.

I enjoy having fun with the colors. You are welcome to ignore them.

Whether my logic etc. is flawless or not, God's Word and purposes shall unfold--evidently rather dramatically in our era--regardless. . . it's sobering but exciting to see. To be called to a role in the drama is a humbling honor regardless of it being a role to shine shoes or exhort kings.

I am curious at what point in the unfolding of Scriptural prophecy after prophecy with the unfolding of the morning paper . . . when in the process are folk on your side of constructions of reality . . . begin to realize they've misconstrued things. . . that will indeed be fascinating.

37 posted on 06/05/2002 7:22:04 PM PDT by Quix
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To: Thinkin' Gal
I like your Scriptures and logic.
38 posted on 06/05/2002 7:24:35 PM PDT by Quix
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To: NMC EXP
Actually trying to impress folk hereon with colors and fonts would at best be a futile exercise.

I enjoy them myself. They are fun for me. Besides being fun, they are practical, when I want to refer back to a section, the section is easier to find. And, because I tend to use the colors in whatever haphazard way seems fun at the time, each posting has it's own complexion so to speak. That makes the posting easy to note among several.

But mostly, I just enjoy color. God seems to have liked it. I find I tend to like what He likes. Life has enough deadness, drabness, dullness, walking deadness.

It has begun to have an alternate bit of fun attached to it. . . it seems to annoy folk who seem to have very drab, dead, stodgy, fossilized theologies.

39 posted on 06/05/2002 7:29:21 PM PDT by Quix
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To: Frumanchu
You're sure welcome to support Israel for most any sane, constructive reason. And, I suspect, blessing Israel for any reason will still carry a blessing attached to it.
40 posted on 06/05/2002 7:31:26 PM PDT by Quix
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To: TomSmedley
Have long been a fool for Jesus.

. . . though a number of other people have suspected different dynamics and motiavtions in my "foolness." You are welcome to your own opinion.

I Love watching Almighty God bring prophetic passages to vivid, concrete, literal fulfillment in our era. If you prefer to walk around in our hazardous era with blinders on, far be it from me to try and constrain your limited freedom further.

41 posted on 06/05/2002 7:33:57 PM PDT by Quix
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To: sheltonmac
"And if you are Christ's, then you are Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise" (Gal. 3:29).

This Scripture does not exclude Israeli's in the least. It merely adds.

42 posted on 06/05/2002 7:35:19 PM PDT by Quix
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To: sheltonmac
The writer attacks the easy targets of TV preachers and Christian writers who have made certain predictions. Nobody I know of puts any stock in what any TV preacher who begs for money has to say and the "Left Behind" authors acknowledge that their work is fiction, as do all the readers of their books. But that seems lost on the writer of this piece. Hal Lindsay, like many others, made the mistake of thinking he could personally come to specific dates and times for future events. This is clearly wrong, and any quick glance at the Gospels tells us that no man knows the day or hour of Christ's coming, so this is doomed to failure. But this does not prove or disprove the eschatology in question. It's all just a "straw man" that is easy to knock down. The writer would do better to address and try to refute their eschatology, which he does a poor job of, at least from what I see IMO.
43 posted on 06/05/2002 7:39:15 PM PDT by Iowegian
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To: sheltonmac
"For they are not all Israel who are of Israel, nor are they all children because they are the seed of Abraham" (Rom. 9:6b-7a).

Quite so!

AND . . .

For they are not all truly mine who are of the First Church of the Frozen Chosen. Nor are they all children because they are the seed of wild Scripture flingers.

God tends to look on the heart whether Israeli then, when or now--or Christian then, when or now. And those seeking truly after God shall find Him--HE SAID. And if you think there are no Israeli's truly seeking after God, your thinking and theology are more dismaying than I thought.

And if you think Almighty God would not care more for Israel as a NATION with 10 or 100 truly seeking Him than He cared for Sodom and Gomorrah . . . had 10 righteous been found in them.. . . . then I can't imagine what 7/11 you bought your logic at.

44 posted on 06/05/2002 7:40:06 PM PDT by Quix
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To: Iowegian
It sure does seem to have an anti-Semitic ring to it--oddly sounding like stern Pharisees. Curious.
45 posted on 06/05/2002 7:41:59 PM PDT by Quix
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To: Quix
I read your bio and see that you were in China for 15 years. Were you a missionary? If so, how did your brand of evangelism go over with the Chinese? Thay are rather fatalistic, are they not?
46 posted on 06/05/2002 7:42:05 PM PDT by Palladin
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To: safisoft
GREAT POST. THANKS. But God's Thanks will mean a lot more to you!
47 posted on 06/05/2002 7:43:50 PM PDT by Quix
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To: safisoft
I have been waiting for a thread like this one, asI find the question of the Church and Israel a fascinating one...

Yet it takes less than ten responses for one Dispensational Christian brother to refer to those that hold to Reformed Theology as "anti-semites." That is no way to behave, especially towards other believers.

48 posted on 06/05/2002 7:47:21 PM PDT by Zack Nguyen
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To: OwenKellogg
I think He even managed to tell us that he came to fulfill the law (Matt 5:17).

Then for emphasis: "It is finished.(John 19:30)"

--------- HMMMM

I'm not sure if the problem is a rubber Bible or rubber logic.

Fulfilling the law and finishing the legal reclaiming of earth from Satan is suppposed to have some import vis a vis this prophetic era not being Biblically predicted end times?

Maybe my juggling of too many things and issues prevents me from bending my logic flexibly enough to follow such "reason"-ing.

49 posted on 06/05/2002 7:49:49 PM PDT by Quix
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To: Iowegian
WOW, A CALM, REASONABLE, LOGICAL observation.

humbled and honored. Thanks.

50 posted on 06/05/2002 7:51:26 PM PDT by Quix
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