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Prophecy Pundits are at it Again
American Vision ^ | February 23, 2009 | Gary DeMar

Posted on 02/24/2009 10:10:12 AM PST by topcat54

Calvary Chapel of Chino California held “ The Southern California Prophecy Conference” last week (Feb. 20–22, 2009). I wonder if those who came to hear speakers like Tim LaHaye, Mark Hitchcock, Paul McGuire, David Hocking, David Reagan, and Ed Hindson were aware that Chuck Smith, the founder of the Calvary Chapel network of churches, made some very definite predictions about when the “rapture” was going to take place.

While cleaning up my office, I came across a cassette tape of a sermon Chuck Smith preached on December 31, 1979. He told his very accepting audience on that day that the rapture would take place in 1981. The former Soviet Republic going into Afghanistan in August of 1978 was the prelude to what Smith considered to be a full-force invasion of the Middle East. It would not be long before “Russia” would invade Israel, Smith told his audience. All of this was said to have been “predicted” by Ezekiel 2600 years ago.

Smith went on to claim in his end-of-the-year message of 30 years ago that because of ozone depletion Revelation 16:8 would be fulfilled during the soon-coming Great Tribulation: “And the fourth angel poured out his bowl upon the sun; and it was given to it to scorch men with fire.” According to Smith, Halley’s Comet would pass near the earth in 1986 and would wreck atmospheric havoc for those left behind as debris from its million-mile tail pummeled the earth. Halley’s Comet did appear in 1986 with no damage done to our planet. (A similar prelude to the end had been predicted based on the so-called Jupiter Effect.[1]) ...

(Excerpt) Read more at americanvision.org ...


TOPICS: Theology
KEYWORDS: dispensationalism; eschatology; preterism; prophecy; tribulation
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To: Frumanchu; Quix; topcat54

First off..Jesus coming like a *Thief in the Night* is not the second coming, if that were the case...Most of the world would be destroyed..How many people still deny Jesus Christ as the Saviour of the World?

Most of the Jews, Muslims, Pagans, Atheists, Agnostics, even many so called christians..

According to you Jesus Christ is only going to be concerned with his true flock and to hell with the rest.

The Purpose of Jesus Christ removing his church is to give people another chance to be reconciled to GOD, even if you deny the rapture from scripture a Loving GOD would never ever just destroy people because, they have not had the opportunity to hear the Gospel, been denied the opportunity to accept the Gospel or destroy almost all of the Jews who are his Chosen People, because they still do not understand the Gospel.


51 posted on 02/25/2009 10:44:08 AM PST by TaraP (The RAPTURE: Separation of Church and State)
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To: TaraP

LOVE READING YOUR COMMENTS.

THX.


52 posted on 02/25/2009 10:46:39 AM PST by Quix (POL Ldrs quotes fm1900 2 presnt: http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/religion/2130557/posts?page=81#81)
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To: Quix

Yes it still is very pretty and all the stores are still there, plus snow was all over Mt Baldy, it looked more like Colorado rather than Southern Cal!


53 posted on 02/25/2009 10:46:41 AM PST by TaraP (The RAPTURE: Separation of Church and State)
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To: Quix
And in terms of insults . . . some folks in the Calvinist camp are way ahead of where I’d ever be able to catch up if I lived to be 500 years old! LOL.

Ahh, how I long for the good old days...drstevej was the Rembrandt of debate insults.

54 posted on 02/25/2009 10:49:32 AM PST by Frumanchu (God's justice does not demand second chances)
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To: TaraP
The Purpose of Jesus Christ removing his church is to give people another chance to be reconciled to GOD, even if you deny the rapture from scripture a Loving GOD would never ever just destroy people because, they have not had the opportunity to hear the Gospel, been denied the opportunity to accept the Gospel or destroy almost all of the Jews who are his Chosen People, because they still do not understand the Gospel.

Ah yes...the Gospel According to Tim LaHaye.

Friend, God will not destroy men because they "have not had the opportunity to hear the Gospel," etc. He will destroy them because they are sinners deserving of condemnation. The rapture is not a "last chance" for unbelievers, it is a victory march for the church to meet with Him as He returns to the earth in full and final victory.

55 posted on 02/25/2009 10:53:04 AM PST by Frumanchu (God's justice does not demand second chances)
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To: topcat54
Did anyone teach on the Great Commission, Christ’s word to His Church to go into all the world, making disciples of the nations and baptizing? Did they talk about how Christ is seated on His throne, subduing the nations into the kingdom He is preparing for the Father? Did they talk about an eschatology of victory, or was it all defeatist doom-and-gloom, we’re outta here “real soon now” stuff?

Well put.

56 posted on 02/25/2009 10:58:27 AM PST by xjcsa (And these three remain: change, hope and government. But the greatest of these is government.)
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To: Frumanchu

So what does GOD plan on doing to the people living in remote villages in the Amazon in every part of the world that has never heard the Gospel?

When do the dead have an opportunity to hear the Gospel?

Where is scripture on this....


57 posted on 02/25/2009 11:02:26 AM PST by TaraP (The RAPTURE: Separation of Church and State)
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To: Frumanchu

So what does GOD plan on doing to the people living in remote villages in the Amazon in every part of the world that has never heard the Gospel?

When do the dead have an opportunity to hear the Gospel?

Where is scripture on this....


58 posted on 02/25/2009 11:02:48 AM PST by TaraP (The RAPTURE: Separation of Church and State)
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To: Frumanchu

So what does GOD plan on doing to the people living in remote villages in the Amazon in every part of the world that has never heard the Gospel?

When do the dead have an opportunity to hear the Gospel?

Where is scripture on this....


59 posted on 02/25/2009 11:02:48 AM PST by TaraP (The RAPTURE: Separation of Church and State)
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To: TaraP

WOW.

Interesting.

Wellllllllll, Enjoy some blackrasberry jam on some Dudley’s Date-nut bread for me next trip!


60 posted on 02/25/2009 11:04:00 AM PST by Quix (POL Ldrs quotes fm1900 2 presnt: http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/religion/2130557/posts?page=81#81)
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To: Frumanchu

True enough.

some of the ‘artists’ have long gone.


61 posted on 02/25/2009 11:04:34 AM PST by Quix (POL Ldrs quotes fm1900 2 presnt: http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/religion/2130557/posts?page=81#81)
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To: xjcsa

balderdash.

CALVARY CHAPEL IS TOP FLIGHT ON ALL THOSE BIBLICAL POINTS.


62 posted on 02/25/2009 11:05:30 AM PST by Quix (POL Ldrs quotes fm1900 2 presnt: http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/religion/2130557/posts?page=81#81)
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To: topcat54

dozens and dozens and dozens of

SCRIPTURES for one.


63 posted on 02/25/2009 11:06:39 AM PST by Quix (POL Ldrs quotes fm1900 2 presnt: http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/religion/2130557/posts?page=81#81)
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To: xjcsa
There is ample and convincing evidence to place their writing in the 63-66 AD range.

Yes that may be true about the evidence, but as far as material that the average joe can get a hold of and read that talks about the issue it is like trying to find a needle in a hay stake.

64 posted on 02/25/2009 11:15:43 AM PST by ReformedBeckite
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To: D_Idaho

That is pretty much my take.

I was actually led to the Lord through reading one of Hal Lindsey’s books in the early 1980’s. I later caught him in a bold faced lie in another book over an “apparent apparition” in a photograph that was OBVIOUSLY a standard photographic effect.

But my salvation does not depend on Hal...


65 posted on 02/25/2009 11:22:31 AM PST by RobRoy (Islam is a greater threat to the world today than Nazism was in the 1930's.)
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To: Quix; topcat54

Let’s go ahead and ping topcat to your comment as well, since I was quoting him.


66 posted on 02/25/2009 11:23:17 AM PST by xjcsa (And these three remain: change, hope and government. But the greatest of these is government.)
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To: Quix
CALVARY CHAPEL IS TOP FLIGHT ON ALL THOSE BIBLICAL POINTS.

Did they get over the whole Chuck Smith "Jesus is coming back in 1981" thing?

67 posted on 02/25/2009 11:24:40 AM PST by xjcsa (And these three remain: change, hope and government. But the greatest of these is government.)
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To: topcat54

There is enough information to stimulate good debate.

We’ll know for sure eventually. ;)


68 posted on 02/25/2009 11:30:17 AM PST by RobRoy (Islam is a greater threat to the world today than Nazism was in the 1930's.)
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To: TaraP
So what does GOD plan on doing to the people living in remote villages in the Amazon in every part of the world that has never heard the Gospel?

You mean the sinful men and women in the Amazon that suppress the truth in unrighteousness...to whom all that can be known of God is plain...who knew Him but did not honor Him nor were thankful? Those for whom there is no excuse? (Rom 1)

I think Scripture is pretty clear exactly what will happen to them.

69 posted on 02/25/2009 11:38:28 AM PST by Frumanchu (God's justice does not demand second chances)
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To: TaraP; topcat54; Smittie; xjcsa; Iscool; Quix

You said — “I attended the Prophecy Conference with over 4000 people at each service, it was a most blessed event. I did not hear all the speakers, and did not hear anyone predicting the Rapture although I heard about the rapture in scripture.”

That’s wonderful that you were able to attend. Did you get the CDs of the series? I see the speakers were the following —

Paul McGuire – The Coming One World Religion
David Hocking – What’s About to Happen in the Middle East
Jack Hibbs – What Are the Last Days and Why Should You Care?
Ed Hindson – Is the Antichrist Alive Today?
Britt Merrick – Why God Has Given Us Bible Prophecy?
Mark Hitchcock – The Late Great United States
David Reagan – What Happens When You Die?
Bob McEwen – Freedom in Crisis, A World View
Tim LaHaye – Will You Be Left Behind?
Bob McEwen – Finding Hope in the Global Crisis

In terms of anyone predicting the Rapture, I have not heard anyone of these well-known and major prophecy speakers, preachers and teachers ever doing that. I’ve certainly heard of *others* do that, in which they gain a following for a time and get people excited and then they go away. These guys don’t do that.

The reason why is that they understand the “doctrine of imminence”, and you’ll hear them speaking about it. They say that no “signs” will precede the coming of Jesus Christ, in the air, for the church, the Rapture. They say that there are no prophecies to be fulfilled before the Rapture. That’s why they call it a “signless event”. It will be a surprise and people will not be expecting it.

At the same time, we have to realize that Jesus Christ’s “second coming” to set up the Kingdom on earth is not a “signless event”. For one example, we can say that 1,260 days will elapse from the time of the abomination of desolation (the Antichrist in the Temple and stopping the sacrifices) to the coming of Jesus Christ to set up the Kingdom on earth. This is a *definite* time that can be “counted down” to that point of when He returns. All someone has to do, at that point in time, is count the exact days, and when you get to day 1259 — you know that Jesus Christ is coming *tomorrow* — exactly and right on the money.

So, there’s a difference between a “signless event” where no prophecies have to be fulfilled (for the Rapture, hence the “doctrine of imminence”)— and — all the prophecies that have to be fulfilled before Jesus Christ sets up the Kingdom on earth. Those two things are two different events, at two different times.

Now, it has been said that when you see that the “timing” for the “second coming” of Jesus Christ seems to be *coming quickly* (and *that* is not a signless event, as said above) — then — you know that the Rapture is coming *even more quickly*... (which is a signless event).

It’s like saying — “I see Christmas items being put up in the stores — so — Thanksgiving must be *really, really close*...” LOL...

You could say, the same thing — that “I see the signs for the second coming of Christ (to set up His Kingdom) lining up in many different ways, so the Rapture must be really really close!”

AND SO..., *this* is the most that you’ll ever hear from these guys (like the ones you heard at that prophecy conference) — in that they’ll say, “We see the signs of Christ coming to set up His Kingdom and things are lining up dramatically — so — the Rapture must be really really close!” And that’s about it. There is *still* the “doctrine of imminence” that they all adhere to — which is different than the Second Coming of Jesus Christ to set up His Kingdom, here on earth.

It’s the same way with me — when I see the Christmas decorations going into the stores — I do know that Thanksgiving is really really close!” :-)


70 posted on 02/25/2009 11:47:52 AM PST by Star Traveler
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To: Star Traveler

Excellent Post ST!
I heard David Hocking and Ed Hinson..The other’s could not get into to see... In addition most of the material were selling out like Hotcakes..I bought the Book from Ed Hinson

The Coming of the Antichrist and one on the Rapture of the Church of course..:)

I heard no predictions, just biblical prophecy and being prepared in these perilous times.

You are right the Signs in Matthew are the 2nd Coming..

The Rapture has no signs, just be prepared, because it definetly happens before Jesus comes to rein on earth and we definetly see those signs daily!


71 posted on 02/25/2009 11:58:53 AM PST by TaraP (The RAPTURE: Separation of Church and State)
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To: Smittie
Know one knows?
72 posted on 02/25/2009 12:01:54 PM PST by uglybiker (AAAAAAH!!! I'm covered in BEES!)
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To: TaraP; topcat54; Smittie; xjcsa; Iscool; Quix

In regards to what you said about Ed Hindson — “First let me say Ed did not say he thought Obama was the Antichrist..HOWEVER he said..*Do you see how a total unknown Like Barak Obama really came from no-where, a man that was able to capture the hearts and minds of people not only in the USA but all over the world, he said who could of thought *One Man* could accomplish such adulation in such a short time, just speaking about *Change* he said if Obama could accomplish this, what do you think the Antichrist can do? He also said if anyone currently could identify who the Antichrist is we can be sure, we have been *left Behind*.”

Yes, that’s very true, what Ed Hindson says. This gives an “insight” into the mentality and thinking of the people today — that they accept so readily, someone like Obama — who can have *some* characteristics of the Antichrist and see people react this way. This shows that people *are being prepared* for the coming of the Antichrist.

And this points out something that I’ve always thought. The Bible gives prophecies about what is to happen during these days (that we are in). Many people think that things happen “full blown” literally overnight. But, in reality, it doesn’t happen that way. We always see the precursors and the events “building” over time. It could be developing quickly, to be sure, but they will be building, nonetheless.

For example, Israel will be under great distress during those times (the Tribulation) and it will be persecuted and abandoned by the nations. We do see that the pressure is building on Israel and the nations don’t seem to be inclined to see things from Israel’s perspective of “mere survival” but rather from the perspective of the Islamic terrorists who want to destroy Israel. Then we see Iran stating boldly that they want to see the nation of Israel totally destroyed and wiped out and driven out of the area and have Islam take control over the land of Israel. And repeatedly, Iran keeps *asserting* that they have absolutely no intention of backing off their nuclear technology and how it’s their right to have it and no nation will interfere with them. They also state that Israel and the United States are their enemy and that they both will be destroyed.

This is all stuff that is *building* and is observable, in the meantime — before it gets to the climax of the events (those particular prophetic events. So, the prophetic events are key items and one could say that they are “highlights”. We are not given all the “mechanisms” that lead up to them — but — those mechanisms that lead up to the particular prophetic events *will be in operation* in “realtime” and they will be observed by the people living in those “prophetic days”. So, that’s what we see going on right now. It’s what is called (by many of these prophetic teachers) as “stage setting”. It’s setting the stage before the “next act” occurs. So, the “world’s stage” is being “set” — before the final call for the last act of the Tribulation period.

So, once again, we have particular and “limited” prophetic events that are given to us. They don’t just “happen” without “lead-on events” in real life happening first. So, we can see the “lead-on events” in realtime, which lead up to those “certain prophetic events” given in the Bible. And that’s what we see happening now.

What Ed Hindson is saying about Obama, is not that Obama can be the Antichrist, no..., not at all. What he is saying is that Obama is the “type” or the “lead-on event” that shows the “mentality” and the “thinking” of people of *this particular day* — in how they *can accept* the kind of person like who the Antichrist is — who is coming shortly. The “people” are now being “prepared” for the coming of the Antichrist — and you can actually “see it”...


73 posted on 02/25/2009 12:03:31 PM PST by Star Traveler
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To: Quix

I figure I’ll try to live my life as a good Christian, and let the end take care of itself.


74 posted on 02/25/2009 12:06:47 PM PST by airborne (My Stimulus Bill - 10% raise for all active duty military, every year for the next 3 years!)
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To: TaraP; Frumanchu
First off..Jesus coming like a *Thief in the Night* is not the second coming,

That’s one theory. Most theologians, past and present, do not happen to agree with that theory.

According to you Jesus Christ is only going to be concerned with his true flock and to hell with the rest.

Not sure where you get that reading of my views.

The Purpose of Jesus Christ removing his church is to give people another chance to be reconciled to GOD,

In case you have not noticed, God doesn’t need to remove one people from the earth to reconcile. He is quite capable of doing both, as is evidenced from the entire NT when Jews and gentiles came together with the salvation of God to form one new man, the Church. In the books of Acts, for example, we find several instances of Him reconciling thousands of Jewish people in a single day. So, your bogus contention does not stand the test of the Bible. That’s one reason why the pop prophecy conferences are so popular with the theologically naïve. Most folks don’t know enough to ask the hard questions. And those that do usually would not be found dead at such a conference.

The theory that God needs to remove the Church so that God can unleash a great holocaust against national Israel is totally unsupported from the Bible.

But I’m sure that is what was being taught at the sessions of this “prophecy conference”. Here we have the so-called friends of Israel getting together to tell one another how they all won’t be around when two-thirds of the “apple of God’s eye” is reduced to ashes.

The good news for Jewish people, as for all people, is that none of this “holocaust is in store for Israel” stuff is true. All sorts of men can come to Christ today and be reconciled to God. They don’t need to be segregated along racial lines. Jews are no more incapable today of being saved than anyone else, since ultimately salvation of the Lord. He chooses who will be raised from the dead spiritually by identification with the first resurrection, that is, the resurrection of Jesus Christ. The next event on the eschatological radar is the return of Christ, the general resurrection of all men, followed immediately by the great white throne judgment (aka separation of the sheep and goats).

75 posted on 02/25/2009 12:23:58 PM PST by topcat54 ("Dispensationalism -- like crack for the eschatologically naive.")
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To: topcat54; TaraP; Quix; Smittie; xjcsa; Iscool; Lee N. Field; Frumanchu; raynearhood

You were saying — “”However” ... that’s a key word for the Rapture Ready crowd. They are always hedging their bets, insinuating they know more than they really know.”

That’s not what Ed Hindson was indicating. I know from having heard him before, myself. But, also, it was stated in what TaraP said, too. He didn’t “hedge his bets” — but “outright” said that if Obama is the Antichrist and we see him here, then we have been “left behind” (of course, his meaning being — that it’s “not true” and we have not been left behind... LOL...).

Obama was ruled out — and it was not a “hedged bet”.

The one thing that is taught over and over again, by all of these Bible Prophecy teachers is the “doctrine of imminence” in that Jesus Christ will come in the air, for His church (the Rapture) and it will not have any specific prophecies needed to be fulfilled *beforehand* for this to happen. And it will be a “signless event” — in that there are no “signs” which will precede this event that will let people know that it is about to happen. It is said it will be a surprise and no one will be expecting it — hence — one “expects it at any time” (an hour from now, in the next few minutes, tomorrow, next week, next year, in a decade, and so on..., at any time).

These Bible Prophecy teachers don’t say that they know *more* than what the Bible says about it, but they do know that the signs of Jesus Christ’s second coming are building right now. And so, being that this is the case, they also know that the time for the “signless event” to happen (i.e., the Rapture) is even closer than that of the second coming of Jesus Christ to set up the Kingdom on the earth.

And it’s like I’ve said in another post, “When one sees Christmas decorations being put into the stores, then one knows that Thanksgiving is really, really close!”

When one sees the signs of Jesus Christ’s second coming building and things being put into place in the world in which they are lining up for the Kingdom to be established on this earth by Jesus Christ — then one knows that the Rapture is really really close.

But, none of these Bible prophecy teachers ever say when that is going to be, because that goes against the “doctrine of imminence”.

Your questions about the title of the talk given by Ed Hindson — “Is the Antichrist Alive Today?” indicate a bit of a misunderstanding of what he was trying to accomplish.

First of all, that’s a question that is popularly raised. So, having it for a title, is certainly what is on the minds of some. Now, as to what his answer is going to be, is quite another matter. The idea that he got across clearly (and I’ve heard him directly myself, too, but not at this conference) — is that the Antichrist will not be seen by those taken up in the Rapture. He and others are very clear about that. It is emphasized repeatedly.

Secondly, it is clear that the “world” will be prepared for the coming of the Antichrist. To prepare the world for the coming of the Antichrist — and have it *not happen* would be a waste. God does allow people to be “prepared” for what He has coming down the pike. What Ed Hindson was clearly saying is not that one would be able to identify the Antichrist by any characteristics that the Bible would give about him (for the purposes of us “hunting him down and finding out who it is) — but rather — he was saying that the “mentality” and the “thinking” that arise in the “world” (i.e., the mass of the people that we see today) — indicates that they will “follow” the “type of person” that the Antichrist is. We don’t “identify him” — but we have “characteristics” of him — that allow us to see that the world is being prepared for the “likes of a type of man” similar to the Antichrist and what he will be. That’s what Ed Hindson is getting across to people.

So, it comes down to Ed Hindson saying, we will not see the Antichrist — but — we can see that the people of today are “being prepared” for the same type and similarities of the kind of man the Antichrist is like (Obama being an “example” of some of those characteristics, but he’s not the Antichrist).


76 posted on 02/25/2009 12:24:40 PM PST by Star Traveler
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To: xjcsa
Let’s go ahead and ping topcat to your comment as well, since I was quoting him.

I don't respond to Pixy Stix theologies. Where there is genuine biblical substance, then I take notice. You can’t argue with straw.

77 posted on 02/25/2009 12:29:21 PM PST by topcat54 ("Dispensationalism -- like crack for the eschatologically naive.")
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To: RobRoy
There is enough information to stimulate good debate.

Far less than most think. Most of the info is manufactured.

We’ll know for sure eventually. ;)

That’s true about everything. Until that time, my money is riding the theology that has nothing to do with race or nationality.

78 posted on 02/25/2009 12:33:42 PM PST by topcat54 ("Dispensationalism -- like crack for the eschatologically naive.")
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To: airborne; TaraP; Quix

You said — “I figure I’ll try to live my life as a good Christian, and let the end take care of itself.”

Well, it is stated repeatedly, by Bible Prophecy teachers, that there are good reasons for Bible Prophecy to be taught and understood. For one thing, it is God’s proof to us (when we do see prophecy being fulfilled, as we have in the First coming of Jesus), that this is God’s way of validating His Word. If you don’t know of these things — you’ve lost one “major component” of the validation and proof of God’s word as being the Inerrant and Infallible Word of God in all that it says and teaches on.

Secondly, the another reason for the teaching of Bible Prophecy — is that it gives people *high motivation* for going out to “reach the lost”. Otherwise, if people think that things are just “going to go along like they always have for centuries” — then many will figure they’ve got time to live their lives (albeit as “good Christians” of course) in a normal fashion and there is “plenty of time”

BUT — with Bible Prophecy being taught and with it being *understood* — we see that the *time is very short* and we are not going to be able to live out our lives as “normal” — as has been done for centuries and centuries — but that Christ is *coming in our time*.

THAT — all by itself (that understanding of Bible prophecy) — gives great urgency to reaching all those who don’t know Christ — instead of merely living out “my life as a good Christian, and let the end take care of itself.”

Christians need to “feel ashamed” of simply doing that...


79 posted on 02/25/2009 12:35:42 PM PST by Star Traveler
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To: Star Traveler; TaraP; Smittie; xjcsa; Iscool; Lee N. Field; Frumanchu; raynearhood
The one thing that is taught over and over again, by all of these Bible Prophecy teachers is the “doctrine of imminence” in that Jesus Christ will come in the air, for His church (the Rapture) and it will not have any specific prophecies needed to be fulfilled *beforehand* for this to happen.

What about the alleged prophecy regarding the restoration of national Israel. All the pop prophecy gurus back in the 70s and 80s where absolutely certain about the very specific sign of the “fig tree” found in the Matthew 24, including the Calvary Chapel patriarchy. That why 1988 became the focus of so many sermons and books. Folke give Edgar Whisenant a hard time for writing “88 Reasons”, but the fact is he was only following down the path started by Chuck Smith and Co. He was not the problem. Hal, and Chuck, and Salem Kirban -- they were the problem.

This entire conference would not have existed except for the fact that there is an entity in the middle east called “Israel” that futurists eye longingly as evidence of Jesus’ return “real soon now”.

Every time a futurist denies signs, and then mentions Israel in the next breathe, it pretty obvious what they really believe.

indicates that they will “follow” the “type of person” that the Antichrist is.

I would bet dollars to donuts that Hinson was not using any biblical model to describe the antichrist. Reason is there is very little in the Bible about the subject, certainly not enough to fill the books and lectures of the futurists. Every one of these folks thinks they know what antichrist will be like, by comparing to this person or that person, but the fact is they are clueless. Their descriptions are more psychological than theological.

80 posted on 02/25/2009 12:48:43 PM PST by topcat54 ("Dispensationalism -- like crack for the eschatologically naive.")
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To: Frumanchu; TaraP; Quix

You were saying to TaraP — “You mean the sinful men and women in the Amazon that suppress the truth in unrighteousness...to whom all that can be known of God is plain...who knew Him but did not honor Him nor were thankful? Those for whom there is no excuse? (Rom 1)”

It’s true that all have the general revelation of God, which will lead them to pray to this Creator God, asking for further revelation in what they should do (which would be in terms of salvation). Anyone who calls on God, from general revelation (that we all have, no matter where we are) — God will provide the specific revelation for salvation.

Whether this be by missionary, specifically sent by God, or an angel sent for this specific purpose — one way or another God will answer the prayers of them who are honestly seeking him, having seen His general revelation in Creation and knowing that He is our Creator God. God will not disappoint this person, no matter where they are on this earth, and no matter what time period it is in or was in — when they “call upon God” having seen Him in His Creation (as God intended it to be...)

Lastly, you said — “I think Scripture is pretty clear exactly what will happen to them.”

Yes, those who respond to God’s revelation in Creation, knowing that there is a Creator God out there, and wanting to know the plan of salvation — will be given that revelation for purposes of salvation. Those who refuse the revelation of God, seeing in creation, the works of this Creator God, will be as Romans 1 says, and as Revelation 20 says (in the Great White Throne judgement).

Also, remember that the Gospel of Jesus Christ, of His salvation will be given to the whole world, by means of an angel, at a particular time in Revelation.

Revelation 14:6-7

6 Then I saw another angel flying in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel to preach to those who dwell on the earth—to every nation, tribe, tongue, and people—

7 saying with a loud voice, “Fear God and give glory to Him, for the hour of His judgment has come; and worship Him who made heaven and earth, the sea and springs of water.”

*This* is the time that the gospel is given to the whole world, and “then” the end comes...


81 posted on 02/25/2009 12:49:47 PM PST by Star Traveler
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To: xjcsa

IIRC, that was Harold Camping, not Chuck Smith.

IIRC, Chuck Smith has been loathe to set dates.

He may have speculated like Billy Graham did once that he didn’t see how Christ could return later than 1975.

Speculations are not prophetic pronouncements.


82 posted on 02/25/2009 12:54:25 PM PST by Quix (POL Ldrs quotes fm1900 2 presnt: http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/religion/2130557/posts?page=81#81)
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To: Star Traveler

Good points.


83 posted on 02/25/2009 12:57:15 PM PST by Quix (POL Ldrs quotes fm1900 2 presnt: http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/religion/2130557/posts?page=81#81)
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To: airborne

True enough.

Yet, part of being a Good Christian is obeying Christ’s words to

WATCH AND BE READY.


84 posted on 02/25/2009 12:58:15 PM PST by Quix (POL Ldrs quotes fm1900 2 presnt: http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/religion/2130557/posts?page=81#81)
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To: topcat54

“MOST theologians past and present . . . “

ROTFLOL!


85 posted on 02/25/2009 12:58:46 PM PST by Quix (POL Ldrs quotes fm1900 2 presnt: http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/religion/2130557/posts?page=81#81)
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To: Star Traveler

INDEED!


86 posted on 02/25/2009 12:59:52 PM PST by Quix (POL Ldrs quotes fm1900 2 presnt: http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/religion/2130557/posts?page=81#81)
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To: topcat54; TaraP; Quix; Smittie; xjcsa; Iscool; Lee N. Field; Frumanchu; raynearhood

You were saying — “What about the alleged prophecy regarding the restoration of national Israel. All the pop prophecy gurus back in the 70s and 80s where absolutely certain about the very specific sign of the “fig tree” found in the Matthew 24, including the Calvary Chapel patriarchy. That why 1988 became the focus of so many sermons and books. Folke give Edgar Whisenant a hard time for writing “88 Reasons”, but the fact is he was only following down the path started by Chuck Smith and Co. He was not the problem. Hal, and Chuck, and Salem Kirban — they were the problem.”

There’s no question about it — the “nation of Israel” has been an expected event — even before Israel became a nation again. There were even Bible preachers back in the 19th century (1800s) who advised Hertzl not to take land in Africa for a “nation” for the Jews, but to only do so in the land of Israel, and showed him the Bible prophecies that indicated this was to be so. I mention this to say that even back in the 1800s, Bible preachers and teachers were expecting the establishment of the nation of Israel again.

One reason would be that one could not have a Temple in Jerusalem unless the Jews were there and unless they controlled the land. That’s one of the types of “reasoning” that they used (before the “nation of Israel” was established again, once more).

And *now* we see that the religious people over in Israel (they are non-religious people... there... :-) .... ) are preparing for the building of the Temple. They have prepared the garments, the instruments to use in worship in the Temple, the furnishings and other implements to be used, the solid gold menora and procedures that they’ll have to go through in order to implement the sacrifices once again. That’s all *in the works* right now.

And, we see from what Bible prophecy teachers say in this subject, that there *will be sacrifices* instituted once more, and that this requires that a Temple be put into place there.

What do you think is one of the *main hold-ups* for the “final status peace agreement” with the Muslims (and Jews)? It’s the *rebuilding of the Temple*. The Jews will never have *any* final status agreement with the Muslims over in Israel — until — they’ve got it settled on “rebuilding the Temple” and restarting the “sacrificial system” as they had in the past.

So, you see, these things are “taking place” right now — and in our “real world politics” — the Temple in Jerusalem — is one of the *main holdups” to the final status talks on peace. The other item that is a “hold-up” on the final status talks on peace — is “control of Jerusalem” Those are the *two items* that the Oslo Peace Accords put on the list for the *very last* to be settled — as they were the most contentious of all...


87 posted on 02/25/2009 1:05:32 PM PST by Star Traveler
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To: Quix
IIRC, that was Harold Camping, not Chuck Smith.

IIRC, Chuck Smith has been loathe to set dates.

He may have speculated like Billy Graham did once that he didn’t see how Christ could return later than 1975.

Speculations are not prophetic pronouncements.

From what I read here, I find it hard to distinguish between Smith's words and "setting dates" - he calls it a "deep conviction", not silly speculation.

88 posted on 02/25/2009 1:16:15 PM PST by xjcsa (And these three remain: change, hope and government. But the greatest of these is government.)
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To: topcat54

>>Far less than most think. Most of the info is manufactured. <<

Like I said, there is enough information to stimulate good debate.

:)


89 posted on 02/25/2009 1:39:12 PM PST by RobRoy (Islam is a greater threat to the world today than Nazism was in the 1930's.)
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To: Star Traveler; TaraP; Smittie; xjcsa; Iscool; Lee N. Field; Frumanchu; raynearhood
So, all that verbiage aside, you seem to be agreeing with me while denying your earlier claim that that there are absolutely, positively no specific prophecies prior to the rapture. Unless you are also simultaneously trying to claim that the existence of modern Israel is a specific sign of Christ’s return.

BTW, all that stuff about the temple and Islam and such makes absolutely no sense to a person who does not adopt your preconceptions about the future. We’ve haven’t the benefit of seeing things through your peep stones.

Earlier you wrote:

And it will be a “signless event” — in that there are no “signs” which will precede this event that will let people know that it is about to happen.

If the so-called rapture is a “signless event” how come God placed Israel in the land for all these prophecy gurus to be speculating about “fig tree” signs and such? Suggesting dates, etc? There are only two choices; either modern Israel is the fulfillment of specific Bible prophecies and the near will occur within a generation of these things taking place (ala Lindsey and Co.), or modern Israel is not related to any Bible prophecy, and it could disappear tomorrow without any consequence in eschatology terms (other than with the plethora of pop prophecy types who wind up with egg on their face). It would just be another vanishing human nation, just like so many others.

I personally think this is real proof that God as a sense of humor.

90 posted on 02/25/2009 2:37:14 PM PST by topcat54 ("Dispensationalism -- like crack for the eschatologically naive.")
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To: xjcsa

Even a deep personal conviction is still not a prophetic pronouncement.

However, the bucket-of-rocks brigade will always find plenty to throw rocks at other believers about.

Thankfully, Chuck Smith can stand before His Heavenly Father with cleaner hands than about any other well known Pastor I know of, besides Billy Graham.


91 posted on 02/25/2009 2:50:23 PM PST by Quix (POL Ldrs quotes fm1900 2 presnt: http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/religion/2130557/posts?page=81#81)
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To: topcat54; TaraP; Quix; Smittie; xjcsa; Iscool; Lee N. Field; Frumanchu; raynearhood

You said — “So, all that verbiage aside, you seem to be agreeing with me while denying your earlier claim that that there are absolutely, positively no specific prophecies prior to the rapture. Unless you are also simultaneously trying to claim that the existence of modern Israel is a specific sign of Christ’s return.”

Well, to see that there is a Temple and sacrifices are being done and the Antichrist will stand there, as in the abomination of desolation and put a stop to the sacrifices — *does* show that Israel exists (which it did not exist before, “in history”) — but — it does *not* give a “sign” as to the timing of the Rapture. That (i.e, the “Rapture”) is a signless event. The existence of Israel is not even given as a “preceding event” (in the Bible) for something that happens *prior* to the Rapture.

The point at which Israel *has to exist* is for the Antichrist to be there and put a stop to the sacrifices. That doesn’t say anything about the “timing” of the Rapture, because the Rapture occurs *prior* to the revealing of the Antichrist, and all of what he does and prior to the Tribulation. Those prophecies occur inside the Tribulation. Note that those prophecies don’t say (one way or another) that Israel will become a nation again at “this particular time” — it could and then it might be earlier. In what we’ve seen from our “experience” (but not from the Bible prophecies) is that it came earlier than the Tribulation — but — it *had to be there* — during the Tribulation — without a doubt.

SO NOW..., as we are “here” in our present days, we “see” by actual and real-life circumstances that Israel’s existence did precede the Rapture, but the Bible did not tell us this and we had “no Biblical sign” for the existence of Israel as being prior to the Rapture.

So, as you can see, the Bible did not give a prophecy or a “sign” as preceding the Rapture. We only know that it happened for Israel by observing things unfold in real life — not — by getting a prophecy from the Bible and not from getting a “sign” from the Bible.

And the point at which Israel exists, and we have the Antichrist putting a stop to the sacrifices, then we have the 1,260 days to the coming of Christ for setting up the Kingdom. That doesn’t say anything about the timing of Rapture.

For *that event* — the coming of Jesus Christ — to set up the Kingdom, we’ve got a “sign”, we’ve got a “prophecy” and we’ve got the *exact days* until the coming of Christ to set up the Kingdom.

There’s the difference...

That’s why it’s an apt description to say that “When I see Christmas decorations being put in the store, I know Thanksgiving is very very close!”

When I see the events leading up to the coming of Jesus Christ to *set up His Kingdom* being put into place, then I know the Rapture is very very close (even without a “preceding sign” [because there are no preceding signs] and even without a preceding prophecy [because there are no preceding prophecies] for the Rapture).

And then you said — “There are only two choices; either modern Israel is the fulfillment of specific Bible prophecies and the near will occur within a generation of these things taking place (ala Lindsey and Co.), or modern Israel is not related to any Bible prophecy, and it could disappear tomorrow without any consequence in eschatology terms...”

The choice is — the nation of Israel is a fulfillment of specific Bible prophecies — the ones that are going to happen in the Tribulation. The Rapture takes place prior to those prophecies, but we don’t know when. Once the Tribulation occurs and those prophecies related to Israel are in play, then we’ve got an *exact countdown* — to the day — of when Jesus Christ comes back to “set up the Kingdom on earth”...

And once we see things being *put into place* (what is called “stage setting”) that have a bearing on the prophecies that will take place in the Tribulation, then we know the Rapture is near (although not “when”) because the Rapture takes place *prior* to these prophecies in the Tribulation.

The great “ditty” that I like is (as you’ve heard already) — when I see the Christmas decorations being put in the stores, I know that Thanksgiving is very very close...” :-)

Of course — I know when the date of Thanksgiving is — but if I were to say that to someone (from another country and other customs) who didn’t know when the date of Thanksgiving was, I might tell them — “When you see the stores putting in those Christmas decorations, then you know Thanksgiving is very very close!” Then they would start to see the “preparations” for Christmas — and they would say to themselves (even though they don’t know when Thanksgiving is) — now that I see this happening, as I was told (about Christmas) I know Thanksgiving is very very close...

Those “signs” of Christmas were *not* about Thanksgiving — but — from those “signs” of Christmas, I was able to say, “Thanksgiving is very very close!”

And so it is with the Rapture...


92 posted on 02/25/2009 3:19:32 PM PST by Star Traveler
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To: Quix
Yet, part of being a Good Christian is obeying Christ’s words to

WATCH AND BE READY.

Goes without saying.

That being said, every generation brings yet another slew of "End Times" prophets (or is that 'profits'?), who are consumed with only preaching doom and gloom, as they 'profit' from book sales and such.

I prefer to keep my primary focus on the teachings of Jesus, and trusting in Him to see to the end times as He so sees fit.

Preoccupation of the Apocalypse is a distraction I do not have.

Sorry if it offends some here that I don't live up to their expectations.

93 posted on 02/25/2009 3:25:44 PM PST by airborne (My Stimulus Bill - 10% raise for all active duty military, every year for the next 3 years!)
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To: Star Traveler

Sorry, I meant to include you in my post # 93 response, but hit ‘post’ prematurely. Didn’t want you to think I was ignoring you.

8^)


94 posted on 02/25/2009 3:30:18 PM PST by airborne (My Stimulus Bill - 10% raise for all active duty military, every year for the next 3 years!)
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To: airborne

You certainly do NOT have to live up to my expectations.

Living daily for Jesus is quite the paragon priority in my book.

Blessings,


95 posted on 02/25/2009 4:21:31 PM PST by Quix (POL Ldrs quotes fm1900 2 presnt: http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/religion/2130557/posts?page=81#81)
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To: airborne
Preoccupation of the Apocalypse is a distraction I do not have.
Sorry if it offends some here that I don't live up to their expectations.

Yes, I'm very disappointed in you...

There's plenty in the scriptures about that blessed hope...And we are encouraged to look for that blessed hope...And what is that blessed hope??? It's the return of Jesus to rescue His own from this evil world...

And if the idea of that happening in your lifetime doesn't get you excited, I don't know what would...

I've talked to a number of Christians who are deathly afraid of the Rapture...They're not ready for such an event...Their wives, husbands, children, jobs, next week's golf game, etc...

And others want more time to get 'fully qualified' so as to pass the judgement...They're not quite ready yet to get 'real' serious about Christianity...

But hey, all the prophecies had to be fulfilled for the Rapture to take place...And the last prophecy required to be fulfilled was the return of Israel to her own land...And NOW, that's a done deal...

It's true that people have been looking for this event for centuries...But they apparently didn't believe the scriptures and more than some on this thread do...The prophecies had to be fulfilled first...And that didn't happe til 1948...

1Th 5:1 But of the times and the seasons, brethren, ye have no need that I write unto you.
1Th 5:2 For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night.

1Th 5:4 But ye, brethren, are not in darkness, that that day should overtake you as a thief.
1Th 5:5 Ye are all the children of light, and the children of the day: we are not of the night, nor of darkness.
1Th 5:6 Therefore let us not sleep, as do others; but let us watch and be sober.

Stand and watch...

96 posted on 02/25/2009 4:56:05 PM PST by Iscool (I don't understand all that I know...)
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To: Star Traveler; TaraP; Smittie; xjcsa; Iscool; Lee N. Field; Frumanchu; raynearhood

So, again, what I hear you saying is that you do not know for certain that we have gotten to “Thanksgiving” so we have no clue as to how close we are to “Christmas”. In fact, you have no way of knowing whether you are looking at Christmas decorations or a 4th of July parade.

BTW, I’m not agreeing that your “Thanksgiving” analogy is valid wrt the Second Coming. I believe it is bogus.


97 posted on 02/25/2009 5:01:02 PM PST by topcat54 ("Dispensationalism -- like crack for the eschatologically naive.")
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To: Iscool; airborne
There's plenty in the scriptures about that blessed hope...And we are encouraged to look for that blessed hope...And what is that blessed hope??? It's the return of Jesus to rescue His own from this evil world...

Hmmm, so either you believe the “rapture” coincides with the Second Coming, or you think Jesus told Christians to look for something that's of no real concern to them.

11 For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men, 12 teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly in the present age, 13 looking for the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, 14 who gave Himself for us, that He might redeem us from every lawless deed and purify for Himself His own special people, zealous for good works. (Titus 2)
Christ's “appearing” is judgment day.
I charge you therefore before God and the Lord Jesus Christ,who will judge the living and the dead at His appearing and His kingdom: (2 Tim. 4:1)
Judgment day is after the thousand years.
11 Then I saw a great white throne and Him who sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away. And there was found no place for them. 12 And I saw the dead, small and great, standing before God, F109 and books were opened. And another book was opened, which is the Book of Life. And the dead were judged according to their works, by the things which were written in the books. 13 The sea gave up the dead who were in it, and Death and Hades delivered up the dead who were in them. And they were judged, each one according to his works. 14 Then Death and Hades were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. 15 And anyone not found written in the Book of Life was cast into the lake of fire. (Rev. 20)
And the angels who did not keep their proper domain, but left their own abode, He has reserved in everlasting chains under darkness for the judgment of the great day; (Jude 6)

98 posted on 02/25/2009 5:16:50 PM PST by topcat54 ("Dispensationalism -- like crack for the eschatologically naive.")
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To: Iscool

INDEED.

THX.


99 posted on 02/25/2009 5:27:05 PM PST by Quix (POL Ldrs quotes fm1900 2 presnt: http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/religion/2130557/posts?page=81#81)
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To: topcat54; raynearhood
Thank you for responding. You cited North as the originator of the term "Biblically optimistic," but nothing remotely resembling that appears in the passage you quoted. What he used was "eschatological pessimism," which implies its opposite as well and which is what I would have suggested as being much closer to what seems to be your intent. Of course, it is your ping list and you may advertise it as you wish, but perhaps you might wish to consider the following.

The Bible's main point is God's plan for salvation, which is inherently "optimistic." Referring to temporal eschatological matters is necessarily less significant than that plan for eternal salvation. To coin the phrase "Biblically Optimistic" conjures up the prospect by inference of its converse, which suggests that the salvation plan described therein must be flawed. That would be a gross fundamental misunderstanding of the Bible.

If what you mean is eschatological rather than soteriological, why not make it plain?

100 posted on 02/25/2009 5:36:40 PM PST by Hebrews 11:6 (Do you REALLY believe that (1) God is, and (2) God is good?)
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