Skip to comments.The Not So Secret Rapture
Posted on 01/14/2011 5:57:52 PM PST by topcat54
Evangelical book catalogs promote books such as Planet Earth: The Final Chapter, The Great Escape, and the Left Behind series. Bumper stickers warn us that the vehicles occupants may disappear at any moment. It is clear that there is a preoccupation with the idea of a secret rapture. Perhaps this has become more pronounced recently due to the expectation of a new millennium and the fears regarding potential Y2K problems. Perhaps psychologically people are especially receptive to the idea of an imminent, secret rapture at the present time. Additionally, many Christians are not aware that any other position relative to the second coming of Jesus Christ exists. Even in Reformed circles there are numerous people reading these books. Many of these people are unaware that this viewpoint conflicts with Scripture and Reformed Theology.
(Excerpt) Read more at reformed.org ...
God will use whoever He chooses....and no one is excempt from sin, except the Christ,or group of people.... so therefore there is no “perfect” religion. Thus it puts all people in the place of being used or sent by God at His choosing....and there will always be failures and falling short of what we might otherwise be...we all have a “trail” of damage behind us.
additionally to that.....
Matthew 19:30 But many who are first will be last, and many who are last will be first.
Mark 10:31 But many who are first will be last, and the last first.
Luke 13:30 Indeed there are those who are last who will be first, and first who will be last.
And my point is, again, how does one know if one is not following the brighest angel if one rejects the Church of Jesus on earth?
Cronos made the exorcism comment to me (which was later pulled) and Mark responded to my disgust with that post that I was some kind of hall monitor who has a problem with Latin.
Let's see what you actually said:
Perhaps it's not willful disregard for the rules that leads you and Cronos to post excerpts without attribution (putting FR at risk of copyright infringement)... I>
This is a direct accusation of me posting excerpts without attribution. Do I see an apology in the near future? Or am I predestined to go without?
How is it anyones duty to persecute the Waldenses or any other group in Christs name?
It is the duty of all Christians to preserve the Faith, and not let the whims of men dilute or change it. The Waldensians were decidedly not Christian any more than Calvin was centuries later. Look at all those out there right now who call themselves Christian and have no resemblence to Christians. There are those who believe in double predestination. There are those who disbelieve the Trinity. And so on.
If you believe in Judgement, how might you think Jesus would have Judged those who would have simply permitted the Waldensians to go to hell in their own handbasket unopposed?
You are confusing "double-predestination" with perseverance. These two doctrines are completely separate.
Double predestination is when God purposely chooses the elect and purposely reject others. Predestination is when God purposely chooses the elect. The difference, of course, is that in DP God have purposely sentence people to hell. I happen to fall in the category of the Ps but I think it is splitting hairs. It is a moot point because the fact is that God by de Facto has sentence all of us to hell; and it was done on purpose.
And the arguments against DP and P are spurious because there are numerous times in scripture where God does elect and choose people. Why He chooses one over another we cant say. For the difference between believers and unbelievers, the angel of death at the time of Moses is an excellent example of where God past someone over and took vengeance on another. So yes, God has ordained and predestined some to greatness and some to other tasks. One may recall the 6,000 prophets who hid in a cave during the time of Ahab and Elijah. They too were called of God, if for no other reason than to hide in a cave.
Does God purposely send people to hell? People are already sentence to hell. You dont start in a neutral position. And, yes, God did pass judgment that we would go to hell. Thats just the way it is. Scripture teaches that we are all haters of God. If we really loved God we would do the things of God so let's not have any arguments that we really love God. I can only marvel at my own wickedness yet knowing that God loves me.
Is it unfair of God to harden a person's heart who hates Him? No. However it is far more gracious of God to change a person's heart who hates him. And God doesnt have to do this for everyone in order to be gracious.
Persevering Grace, OTOH, is totally consistent with Augustine's view. I have known too many people who had a wonderful walk with the Lord only to fall away. And there are some who fall away for a season but return. We just don't know what a person truly believe. The Westminster Confession states this very clearly:
Of the Perseverance of the Saints I. They, whom God has accepted in His Beloved, effectually called, and sanctified by His Spirit, can neither totally nor finally fall away from the state of grace, but shall certainly persevere therein to the end, and be eternally saved.
II. This perseverance of the saints depends not upon their own free will, but upon the immutability of the decree of election, flowing from the free and unchangeable love of God the Father; upon the efficacy of the merit and intercession of Jesus Christ, the abiding of the Spirit, and of the seed of God within them, and the nature of the covenant of grace: from all which arises also the certainty and infallibility thereof.
III. Nevertheless, they may, through the temptations of Satan and of the world, the prevalency of corruption remaining in them, and the neglect of the means of their preservation, fall into grievous sins; and, for a time, continue therein: whereby they incur God's displeasure, and grieve His Holy Spirit, come to be deprived of some measure of their graces and comforts, have their hearts hardened, and their consciences wounded; hurt and scandalize others, and bring temporal judgments upon themselves.
Augustine’s Treatise “On Grace and Free Will” was written before the Perseverance of the Saints. I don’t think you can look at one and the other with equal weight. Instead it shows a progression in Augustine’s thinking.
Amen. If one truly has the choices of heaven and hell standing before them, what choice would they make? Once we see the light we will never want the darkness.
I. God has endued the will of man with that natural liberty, that is neither forced, nor, by any absolute necessity of nature, determined good, or evil.andChapter XV: Of Repentence unto Life
II. Man, in his state of innocency, had freedom, and power to will and to do that which was good and well pleasing to God; but yet, mutably, so that he might fall from it.
III. Man, by his fall into a state of sin, has wholly lost all ability of will to any spiritual good accompanying salvation: so as, a natural man, being altogether averse from that good, and dead in sin, is not able, by his own strength, to convert himself, or to prepare himself thereunto. IV. When God converts a sinner, and translates him into the state of grace, He frees him from his natural bondage under sin; and, by His grace alone, enables him freely to will and to do that which is spiritually good; yet so, as that by reason of his remaining corruption, he does not perfectly, or only, will that which is good, but does also will that which is evil.
V. The will of man is made perfectly and immutably free to do good alone in the state of glory only
I. Repentance unto life is an evangelical grace, the doctrine whereof is to be preached by every minister of the Gospel, as well as that of faith in Christ.In fact, in Chapter XVI : Of Good Works he writes
II. By it, a sinner, out of the sight and sense not only of the danger, but also of the filthiness and odiousness of his sins, as contrary to the holy nature, and righteous law of God; and upon the apprehension of His mercy in Christ to such as are penitent, so grieves for, and hates his sins, as to turn from them all unto God, purposing and endeavouring to walk with Him in all the ways of His commandments.
III. Although repentance is not to be rested in, as any satisfaction for sin, or any cause of the pardon thereof, which is the act of God's free grace in Christ, yet it is of such necessity to all sinners, that none may expect pardon without it.
IV. As there is no sin so small, but it deserves damnation; so there is no sin so great, that it can bring damnation upon those who truly repent.
V. Men ought not to content themselves with a general repentance, but it is every man's duty to endeavor to repent of his particular sins, particularly.
VI. As every man is bound to make private confession of his sins to God, praying for the pardon thereof; upon which, and the forsaking of them, he shall find mercy; so he that scandelizeth his brother, or the Church of Christ, ought to be willing, by a private or public confession and sorrow for his sin, to declare his repentance to those that are offended; who are thereupon to be reconciled to him, and in love to receive him
. These good works, done in obedience to God's commandments, are the fruits and evidences of a true and lively faith: and by them believers manifest their thankfulness, strengthen their assurance, edify their brethren, adorn the profession of the Gospel, stop the mouths of the adversaries, and glorify God, whose workmanship they are, created in Christ Jesus thereunto, that, having their fruit unto holiness, they may have the end, eternal life.<["strenghten their assurance"? I don't read double predestination in this, I'm sorry.
Seems to me those Jesuits dealt with them pretty harshly when they educated Hitler and he put many of those Reformer preachers to death.
Are you accusing the Jesuits of educating Hitler so that he would kill Reformed preachers? Impressive job of foreknowledge, right?
Valid enough that “on Grace and Free will” was written before the “Perseverance of the Saints”, though I of course, disagree with you that this is a progression in Augustine’s thinking. Will reply specifically to the P of the S later this evening. Thank you
They apparently had it as late as the 4th century. Did the Church lose the scriptures?
Interesting statement. Which Councils are you referring to?
Well, as much as I'm not impressed with the Council of Trent, we really don't have to go back too far to see that the Catholic Church viewed the scriptures as the authentic works.
DECREE CONCERNING THE EDITION, AND THE USE, OF THE SACRED BOOKS
Moreover, the same sacred and holy Synod,--considering that no small utility may accrue to the Church of God, if it be made known which out of all the Latin editions, now in circulation, of the sacred books, is to be held as authentic,--ordains and declares, that the said old and vulgate edition, which, by the lengthened usage of so many years, has been approved of in the Church, be, in public lectures, disputations, sermons and expositions, held as authentic; and that no one is to dare, or presume to reject it under any pretext whatever.
Impressive. I didn't realize that you used the Church-authorized Latin Bible. I thought that you used the KJV.
kosta: Which is another way of saying it is up to you to be saved or lost, i..e man decides his own slavation/ perdition, not God. Dostoyevsky’s view basically makes God a provider and man the ultimate decider.
This also flies in the face of Matthew 20:16 which reads “for many be called, but few chosen.” [KJV, Douay-Rheims, Russian (1876) Synodal Edition]*
Spirited: Moral imbecility results when man’s reason is uninformed by Universal Moral Law. Your imbecilic claims are merely fiery darts from the abyss, for they are not the result of morally imformed reason used in pursuit of truth but will-to-power speaking through warped reason (liberated from Moral Law) in pursuit of personal power.
In pursuit of personal power you twist, distort, and torture the permanent things until, devoid of all truth and meaning, they become just what you require them to be. For this reason, your responses cannot be taken seriously, for they come from the void.
Everyone from the day they are born are doomed to hell. This was the judgment of God. Rebellion against the things of God is in our nature. And, yes, God did tell them (us) that we are bound for hell unless He steps in and changes this nature.
A god that chooses people to be damned from before time is quite contrary to a Christian concept of a loving God.
The fact is that God did sentence the entire Adam race to hell. Love has nothing to do with it-at least OUR concept of love-which is nothing more than "fairness", not love. What we don't understand is the concept of grace and justice. Knowing that we do not do the things that we should be doing, yet God is gracious to forgive and help us to grow. This is the Father's love.
More surprisingly is that you reject the Church-authorized Latin Bible.
I don’t. The Latin Bible authorized by the Church is fully acceptable to me.
I also accept that the Church has the only authorization to interpret the Bible. Interpretations of men are Scripturally forbidden.
Thanks for the ping.
We didn't reject the church of Jesus Christ on earth...We couldn't reject the church...We didn't join the church...Jesus put us into it when we submitted our trust in Him, made Him our Savior...He then put us into His church...
How'd you get into the Catholic Church???
Nope...the sun doesn't shine...
And your point is?
snip: If one truly has the choices of heaven and hell standing before them, what choice would they make? Once we see the light we will never want the darkness.
Spirited: Those who freely choose the Light of Jesus Christ cannot empathize with those who freely reject Heaven, thereby willfully condemning themselves to Hell. There can be no meeting of minds (empathy) between the former and the latter.
Dostoevsky noted that there are those whose will (Pride of Mind, Flesh, Life) is so terrible as to be satanic. How did Dostoevsky know this to be true? Because he was a self-confessed terrible-willed man, but he sought spiritual remedy through Jesus Christ.
CS Lewis understood this to be the case as well, which is why he said that the gate to Hell will be slammed and locked from the inside.
No, I cannot empathize with such a mind, and I thank God that I cannot.
Thus the salvation of this religion, by which only true one true salvation is truly promised, never failed him who was worthy of it; and whoever it failed was not worthy of it. And from the very beginning of the propagation of man, even to the end, the gospel is preached, to some for a reward, to some for judgment; and thus also those to whom the faith was not announced at all were foreknown as those who would not believe; and those to whom it was announced, although they were not such as would believe, are set forth as an example for the former; while those to whom it is announced who should believe, are prepared for the kingdom of heaven, and the company of the holy angels.and whoever it failed was not worthy of it. --> no sense of pre-ordination of the damned.
although foreknowledge may exist without predestination; because God foreknew by predestination those things which He was about to do, whence it was said, He made those things that shall be. Isaiah 45:11 Moreover, He is able to foreknow even those things which He does not Himself doas all sins whateverHe goes on to say
Because, although there are some which are in such wise sins as that they are also the penalties of sins, whence it is said, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient, Romans 1:28 it is not in such a case the sin that is God's, but the judgment.As an aside, he says in chapter 25
If the Pelagians should dare to say this, by their denial of original sin they would thus be relieved of the necessity of seeking, on behalf of infants outside of the kingdom of God, for some place of I know not what happiness of their own; especially since they are convinced that they cannot have eternal life because they have not eaten the flesh nor drank the blood of Christ; and because in them who have no sin at all, baptism, which is given for the remission of sins, is falsified.
|The proper term to use about the Bible is that is has no errors, that it is inerrant|
Good points. Will get back to you after I think a bit and rest my eyes (Augustine has looooong sentences)
Some people are disputing it, fwiw. But one thing is clear: the Passover lamb was not killed to atone for anyone's sins. The Jews use a goat for that purpose and that happens on Yom Kippur, which is nowhere near the Passover.
Again, animal sin offerings were for involuntary sins only, which is a big fly in the Christian ointment.
As for the Tanakh, the book of Isaiah which is found in the oldest known Tanakh (9th century AD, Moscow), and all subsequent copies of it, agree fully with the Qumran version of Isaiah.
If that is true, then why did satan and 1/3 of all the angels choose to reign in hell rather than serve in Heaven?
Some may dispute whether a lamb or a ram, but all depictions on Egyptian imagery, pyramids etc. are of a ram, with horns. There is no sacred lamb in Egyptian imagery, nor in the egyptian religion.
This denotes a living "thing", one that can make a decision. A placard, say, is neither fallible nor infallible.
A better way of putting it. However, I am also pointing to the fact that English translations of the Bible are not what the authorized Greek versions are - they are approximate to them. That is why the Magisterium is required to teach the correct interpretation; otherwise Luther's every milkmaid will interpret any way and every way.
More importantly, Christianity literally turned some OT stories upside down. .... The lamb was clearly not killed to "atone" for any iniquities, as the Christians teach."The Church does not teach that the lamb was killed during Passover to atone for any iniquities.
Little more here: http://conservapedia.com/The_Bible_versus_the_Qur%27an
Your gracious spirit is a blessing.
Lev 5:1-4 describes sacrifices for wilful sins.
Likewise, the shedding of the blood for atonement applied only for unintentional sins. In Judaism the sins of willful commission could not be atoned by animal sacrifice, but only through repentance. Obviously the Christians "corrected" that too!
Who is 'we'? If you are referring to yourself, remember that you reject the Church in a great number of your posts.
We couldn't reject the church..
You regularly post that rejection.
We didn't join the church
Yes, that is quite apparent.
Jesus put us into it when we submitted our trust in Him, made Him our Savior...He then put us into His church
So you are responsible for your own salvation, then? Fascinating. Do you have a membership card?
How'd you get into the Catholic Church???
A little Biblical process called baptism. You may have heard of it.
Besides, the sacrificial animal had to be killed on the altar, and its blood sprinkled. Crucifixion was no altar sacrifice and Jesus bleeding all over the place from Roman torture and being nailed to the cross was hardly ritual "sprinkling.The altar sacrifice imagery is what we see in Revelation, more as a view from heaven, or a "higher altar". Ritual "sprinkling" is explained more as the way in which the Eucharist is sprinkled throughout the world, since the Eucharist IS the self-same ONE-time sacrifice and Christ's blood is sprinkled as in spread throughout by the effectiveness of the Eucharist.
Thank you oh so much, daniel1212, for posting this informative (and disturbing) article!
“unopposed”? To oppose cannot be construed as murder and persecution. Jesus “opposed” the Pharisees, he didn’t kill them or try to outlaw them or teach anyone that they should.
Paul “opposed” those who would demand a return to Jewish practices, he didn’t try to kill them or organize campaigns against them or demand the secular authorities outlaw them.
“If you believe in Judgement, how might you think Jesus would have Judged those who would have simply permitted the Waldensians to go to hell in their own handbasket unopposed?”
Jesus said it might earn the Father’s approval as He would call such His children:
“That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust.”
The preceding verses may be enlightening to you also!
Are you accusing the Jesuits of educating Hitler so that he would kill Reformed preachers? Impressive job of foreknowledge, right?
If their objective was to deal with the reformers what better way that to teach people to hate them ?
"Fully acceptable" does not mean that you believe the scriptures to be infallible. In fact, it sounds like a very half hearted response. If my wife got all dressed up and asked me how she looked and I said that she was "fully acceptable", I'm sure she'd slug me.
You stated in post 2093 the scriptures are not infallible or inerrant. The Church states they are. Would any decree coming from Rome be unacceptable? You are endangering your own soul and in peril of being anathematized.
I'm really not trying to put you on the spot. I'm simply pointing out that Catholics really no longer believe the scriptures to be infallible and inerrant. They do not follow the teachings of the early fathers. You are not the first that I've brought up the infallibility of the scriptures to, but you're at least reflective enough to answer this rather interesting question. Most Catholics just clam up. This is an illustration of how one of many doctrines of the Church has changed over the last 500 years.
Catholics should think hard and long about what they actually believe, the inerrant scriptural teachings or someone telling them what to believe.
That is an excellent quote. I often think of the rich man and Lazarus. When the rich man looked at Abraham, of all the things he could have asked for, all he asked for was something to quench his thrist.
Ooooooo....doggy. You Catholics sure do have a way of making things complicated. How about this.
This is illustrated in Preservation... chapter 19 although foreknowledge may exist without predestination; because God foreknew by predestination those things which He was about to do, whence it was said, He made those things that shall be. Isaiah 45:11 Moreover, He is able to foreknow even those things which He does not Himself doas all sins whatever
I hate to repeat this mismash but this is a good illustration of the misuse of "foreknowledge". Here is a good read:
Now if future events are foreknown to God, they cannot by any possibility take a turn contrary to His knowledge. If the course of future events is foreknown, history will follow that course as definitely as a locomotive follows the rails from New York to Chicago. The Arminian doctrine, in rejecting foreordination, rejects the theistic basis for foreknowledge. Common sense tells us that no event can be foreknown unless by some means, either physical or mental, it has been predetermined. Our choice as to what determines the certainty of future events narrows down to two alternatives -- the foreordination of the wise and merciful heavenly Father or the working of blind physical fate.
My source is The Catechismand then pointed out that not only did the Catechism teach contrary to what you said, but also you had incorrectly (I guess you may not have scrolled down) quoted the website you referred to, called to communion, which actually said,"For as by one man's disobedience many were made sinners, so by one man's obedience many will be made righteous." (Rom 5:19)
By his obedience unto death, Jesus accomplished the substitution of the suffering Servant, who "makes himself an offering for sin", when "he bore the sin of many", and who "shall make many to be accounted righteous", for "he shall bear their iniquities".
Jesus atoned for our faults and made satisfaction for our sins to the Father.
One question, from the Reformed point of view, is: How then were our sins paid for, if Christ was not punished by the Father? Christ made atonement for the sins of all men by offering to God a sacrifice of love that was more pleasing to the Father than the combined sins of all men of all time are displeasing to Him. Hence through the cross Christ merited grace for the salvation of all men. Those who refuse His grace do not do so because Christ did not die for them or did not win sufficient grace for them on the cross, but because of their own free choice.