Dispensationalism on the Defensive?

Discussion in '2003 Archive' started by KenH, Jul 13, 2003.

  1. KenH

    KenH
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    I noticed the following book at Wal-Mart. Obstensibly it's a defense against preterism(which states the second coming has happened), but it is really an attack on partial preterism(which states the second coming is in the future). Therefore, the title of the book is somewhat misleading.

    I guess the dispensational premillennialists are getting nervous about inroads by non-dispensationalism in the area of eschatology. Hmmmm...I wonder if non-dispensational eschatology is starting to hurt their books sales? [​IMG]

    Anyway, the book is entitled The End Times Controversy: The Second Coming Under Attack.

    It is currently number 437,790 in the sales rank on Amazon.com.
     
  2. LadyEagle

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    Gasp!!! :eek: You shopped at Wal-Mart? Did you not sign the petition posted above? :eek: :eek: :eek:

    Don't need a book to tell me Dispensationalism is on the Defensive - some people around here have been nipping at that for a looooong time. :rolleyes:

    Wonder what they'll say when this dispensation is over, though, LOL. :D ;)
     
  3. KenH

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    Absolutely! [​IMG] That's my main shopping place. Besides, I don't do boycotts. :cool:
     
  4. BrianT

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    Yes, I think dispensationalism is definitely on the defensive. There have been some fantastic, scholarly, sound explanations of other views put forth over the last few decades, and dispensationalism is fighting to keep its adherents. I find it very interesting that despite the flood of books in bookstores defending dispensationism and the pretrib rapture, and the extremely few books discussing other views, I meet people all the time that "used to be" disp/pretrib but are now historic/posttrib, amill/posttrib and/or partial-preterist. I cannot think of a single person I've discussed things with in the last several years who last left another view to become pretrib. I'm sure they exist, but they're definitely the exceptions.

    You're going to boycott every place that has a clause in their policy against discrimination because of sexual orientation? Yeah, OK, good luck with that. Let me know when you've got your self-sufficient hermit colony set up. :rolleyes:
     
  5. IfbReformer

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    KenH,

    I grew up in classic Dispensationalist churches. Came out of it and changed to Historic Premillenialism when as it was the only system that made sense.

    In fact I was a Historic Premillenialist before I knew what a Historic Premillenialist was. Shortly after I rejected classic Dispensationalism I was wondering if anyone thought the way I did, I describe my understanding of the scriptures to someone and they told me I was a Historic Premillenialist.

    I still think preterism is weak, in that there is way too much going on in the Olivet Discourse for it to only be talking about the fall of Jerusalem. And when it says we will see him coming in Glory they can't get around that.

    They always seem to focus on what "this generation" means instead of the seeing him coming in glory.

    I will always be a futurist - they can't explain the Olivet Discourse away as already being fulfilled.

    IFBReformer

    http://www.ifbreformation.org
     
  6. Grasshopper

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    It's amazing to me that secular book stores have more books on fulfilled prophecy than do Christian book stores. I like most was pre-mill disp. all my life until I was exposed to the preterist view. Then after studying the views of a-mill, partial-pret, and Full Preterism, Full Preterism is the only one I have found to be consistent.

    I still think preterism is weak, in that there is way too much going on in the Olivet Discourse for it to only be talking about the fall of Jerusalem.

    You are correct, not only the fall of Jerusalem but the ending of the Old Covenant and ushering in the New Covenant and the Kingdom.

    Notice what Matthew says:

    Matt.16:.
    27 For the Son of man shall come in the glory of his Father with his angels; and then shall he render unto every man according to his deeds.
    28 Verily I say unto you, there are some of them that stand here, who shall in no wise taste of death, till they see the Son of man coming in his kingdom.

    Some will not die till they see the Son coming into His Kingdom. Pretty plain to me.

    And when it says we will see him coming in Glory they can't get around that.

    Let the Old Testament speak to comings. None of which were physical.

    Isaiah 19

    1 The burden of Egypt. Behold, Jehovah rideth upon a swift cloud, and cometh unto Egypt: and the idols of Egypt shall tremble at his presence; and the heart of Egypt shall melt in the midst of it.

    Ps.18
    9 He bowed the heavens also, and came down; And thick darkness was under his feet.

    Ex.3:8
    8 and I am come down to deliver them out of the hand of the Egyptians, and to bring them up out of that land unto a good land and a large, unto a land flowing with milk and honey; unto the place of the Canaanite, and the Hittite, and the Amorite, and the Perizzite, and the Hivite, and the Jebusite

    They always seem to focus on what "this generation" means instead of the seeing him coming in glory.

    Jesus tells the believers when it will happen. We may not understand all of it, but the when is very clear.

    Matthew 24:34, "Verily, I say to you, this generation shall not pass till all these things be fulfilled." ("All these things" refer to the events He describes in the whole chapter of Matthew 24, i.e. the end of the age, the Great Tribulation, and the Second Coming. See the context for verification).
    In Matthew 24:34, the Greek word for "generation" is genea. Genea in the New Testament always, always, always means "generation". Thayer’s Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament maintains that genea in Matthew 24:34 means "The whole multitude of men living at the same time." Arndt-Gingrich’s Greek Lexicon defines the word as such, "basically the sum total of those born at the same time, expanded to include those all living at a given time. Contemporaries." Generally, a Biblical generation is considered 40 years. Christian scholars of the Greek language are painfully aware that Bertrand Russell, in a sense, is right: Jesus was speaking of His generation, i.e. the people then living.
    Many futurists will attempt to explain away the word genea by saying that it actually means "race", not "generation". In fact, "race" is suggested as an alternate meaning in the margins of many Bibles. It is suggested that Jesus was really speaking of the Jewish race, that the Jewish race would not pass until they saw the fulfillment of the end. The fact is that "race" cannot be a possible meaning, and this is easily proved by looking at many other verses in the Gospel’s that contain genea (for instance, see Matthew 1:17). Genea is always translated "generation", not "race"

    they can't explain the Olivet Discourse away as already being fulfilled.

    I dont know who "they" is, but all preterist I have heard and read explain it very easily. Here is just 1.

    http://www.audiowebman.org/bbc/start/audios1.htm
     
  7. Tim

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    Dispensationalism is definitely on the defensive. I believe that's why so many of their writers have heightened their rhetoric against the "competition" with charges of antisemetism and the like.

    Perhaps one big reason is that Disp. often feeds upon a couple of common human misconceptions:

    1. That the Bible has specific information about current news events. That seems to make it seem more "relevant" to many, than if the Bible focuses on past fulfillments and universal and timeless spiritual truths. (This idea also sells a LOT of books).

    2. That our generation is witnessing the end of history. Oddly enough, people have believed this for centuries, and have repeated the mantra "it can't get much worse than it is now". Some think this phenomenon is related to the difficulty we all have imagining the world going on without us after we die. Surely when I'm not here everything will collapse--won't it?

    Richard Abanes has done some excellent writing on the fallacies of such end-of-the-world thinking as well as documenting dozens of false prophecies (including a few dispensationalists') about dating the "end". He even goes into detail to show that claims of increasing earthquakes, etc. are simply untrue.

    I sincerely believe that if the Lord tarries, Dispensationalism will fade within a generation, but it will no doubt be replaced by something else which will feed on the 2 human characteristics above.

    I imagine I got a few hackles up--but I'm just sharing my honest asessment of the current state of popular eschatology.

    Tim
     
  8. Dr. Bob

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    Generalization:

    Preterism is a long-discredited and failed system. That's why not many have heard about it today.

    Amil/Postmil are still poster children for the dead liturgical mainline denominations.

    Dispensational interpretation (pre-trib, imminent rapture) would still be the major school of prophecy among "evangelicals" and "fundamentalists".

    And which group is preaching the Word and seeing souls saved and looking for the Blessed Hope? Yep. You guessed it.
     
  9. Tim

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    Quoting Dr. Bob: "Generalization:" etc. etc.

    Let's call that an OVER-generalization, then you can call my comments an overgeneralization, and we can shake hands and agree.

    There are many good evangelical men of all the eschatological persuations mentioned--and bad, too. It's easy to have blinders on when it comes to our own "group" while we clearly see the faults of others. I don't claim kinship with all others of my basic eschatology, and I'm sure you wouldn't either.

    Don't be so defensive!

    In Christ,

    Tim
     

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