Last Days Madness

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by Jack Matthews, Aug 2, 2006.

  1. Jack Matthews

    Jack Matthews
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    This is the title of a book by Gary DeMar and there are at least two editions of it floating around. Does anyone know if there is a third edition available?

    Also, I'm looking for a book called End Times Visions by Richard Abanes. It was published by Broadman and Holman originally.

    I'm getting ready to teach a Sunday night "discipleship training" course on the various end-times views and need some preterist sources. Other suggestions would be helpful.
     
  2. Grasshopper

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    Last Days Madness was a great book that changed my eschatology overnight.

    Other books you might find helpful:

    "The Last Days According to Jesus" by RC Sproul

    'Who is the Babylon" by Don K Preston

    "Beyond the End-Times" by John Noe
     
  3. James_Newman

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    Overnight? Now thats what I call blown about.
     
  4. Jack Matthews

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    I use Sproul's book as a resource and ask my class members to read it at some point during the class. I'll look at your other suggestions.
     
  5. Joseph_Botwinick

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    If you want the full preterist view, check out "Beyond the End Times: The Rest of the Greatest Story Ever Told" by John Noe. I personally prefer Steven Gregg's book, "Revelation, Four Views: A Parallel Commentary" for serious study of all the major views of eschatology, including the full and partial preterist views.

    Joseph Botwinick
     
  6. Grasshopper

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    Actually it shows what a weak foundation I found dispensationalism to be built on. :thumbs:
     
  7. RO Collins

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    Who is this Baylon - Don Preston

    The second coming of Jesus Christ already Happened - Ward Fenely

    Parousia - J Stuart Russell

    Or these Links

    http://www.preteristarchive.com/Preterism/dennis-todd_p_01.html

    http://www.preterist.org/

    Say good-bye to Dispensationalism
     
  8. Jack Matthews

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    Russell is a great resource, though my Sunday night crowd would probably not enjoy trying to plow through that.

    I did manage to get hold of some copies of DeMar's book, along with a class set of R.C.Sproul's The Last Days According to Jesus.

    We met last Sunday night for the first time, and there's not a single person in the group who has a preconceived idea about eschatology.
     
  9. Ed Edwards

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    I read some really great LAST DAYS books.
    They are highly recommended.

    The Revelation by John the Apostle
    1 & 2 Thessalonians by Paul the Disciple to the Gentiles
    2 Corinthians by Paul of Tarsus
    Ezekiel by possibly Ezekiel.
    The Acts of the Apostles by Luke
     
  10. RO Collins

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    Here is a preconceived idea that is hard to throw off.

    Audience Relevance

    1 Thes 4:17 Then we who are alive and remain will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we shall always be with the Lord.

    Ask yourself "How would the people that Paul was writing to in the first century understand this?"

    Anyone seen any 2000 year old Greeks around?

    Was Paul speaking "to" the actual people the letter is addressed to, or some future generation far into the future time, a time greater than the entirity of the time from David to Jesus?
     
  11. Jo$h

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    Audience Relevance, What a great idea!

    I Thes 2:3 Let no one deceive you (thessalonians) by any means,vs. 4 who opposes and exalts himself above all that is called God or that is worshiped, so that he sits £as God in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God.

    Why would Paul tell the Thessalonians not to be decieved about a yet unbuilt temple 2000 years into the future and the 2nd Temple was still standing when he wrote? Why would they care?

    Here is another one Ch.2 vs 7
    For the mystery of lawlessness is already at work; only £He who now restrains will do so until £He is taken out of the way.

    If He was already restraining in the 1st century how is he still restraining today?
     
    #11 Jo$h, Aug 19, 2006
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  12. RO Collins

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    And here is some audience relavence from Jesus....

    "There are some of those who are standing here who shall not taste death until they see the Son of Man coming in His kingdom." (Matt. 16:28; cf. Mk. 9:1; Lk. 9:27)

    "'When the owner of the vineyard comes, what will he do to those vine-growers?' '....He will bring those wretches to a wretched end, and will rent out the vineyard to other vine-growers, who will pay him the proceeds at the proper seasons.' '....Therefore I say to you, the kingdom of God will be taken away from you, and be given to a nation producing the fruit of it.' ....When the chief priests and the Pharisees heard His parables, they understood that He was speaking about them." (Matt. 21:40-41,43,45)

    "This generation will not pass away until all these things take place." (Matt. 24:34)

    "From now on, you [Caiaphas, the chief priests, the scribes, the elders, the whole Sanhedrin] shall be seeing the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of Power, and coming on the clouds of heaven." (Matt. 26:64; Mk. 14:62; Lk. 22:69)

    Dispensational theology spends more time explaining "away" than explaining these texts.

    Jesus intended that his disciples be clear on one thing......

    "You shall not finish going through the cities of Israel, until the Son of Man comes." (Matt. 10:23)
     
  13. npetreley

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    Then when were these things fulfilled?

    Did the sun go black and the moon become like blood in 70AD? Did the sky recede as a scroll? Was there a great earthquake and every mountain and island moved out of its place? Did the kings of the earth recognize the second coming of the Lord in glory and flee from His wrath?

    Or do we need to "spiritualize" these things away for the sake of preterism, but take literally only those things that fit?

    Here's my definition of preterism (it fits many other doctines, too):

    * When biblical text, interpreted literally, agrees with preterism, that text must be interpreted literally.
    * When biblical text, interpreted literally, contradicts or does not support preterism, that text must be considered symbolic.

    Whenever a doctrine becomes the yardstick against which we measure biblical truth, you can bet that yardstick falls a couple feet short.
     
    #13 npetreley, Aug 19, 2006
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  14. npetreley

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    Here's another text that I think is appropriate, given the discussion...

    Some people believe Peter is equating God's use of the word "day" with a thousand years, and calculate things based on that equation. I think Peter is using hyperbole. He is simply saying that if thousands of years pass before Jesus returns, that doesn't mean Jesus isn't going to return. By God's standards, that is still returning soon.

    Or, to address the preterists more directly, if thousands of years pass before Jesus returns, that doesn't mean you have to go back and reinterpret the texts to mean that Jesus has already returned.

    Either way, Peter clearly knew that thousands of years COULD pass before Jesus returns. That isn't a statement made by someone who believed that Jesus said He had to return while that current generation still lived.

     
  15. RO Collins

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    and the sun became black as sackcloth of hair, and the moon became like blood. 13 And the stars of heaven fell to the earth, as a fig tree drops its late figs when it is shaken by a mighty wind.

    Clearly symbolic

    You are from Texas, when the wild fires that burnt North and West Texas last year did not the sun become dark, or the smoke give the moon and the sun the appearance of blood. It did in my part of the state.



    I feel the same way about hard-core dispensationalist. Because they refuse to admit that any of the Bible is symbolic or spiritual.

    But John said God [is] a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship [him] in spirit and in truth.

    Here is one to try on...

    Gen 2:17 But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.

    for in the day yowm (Strong's 03117)

    1) day, time, year
    a) day (as opposed to night)
    b) day (24 hour period)
    1) as defined by evening and morning in Genesis 1
    2) as a division of time
    a) a working day, a day's journey

    How did Adam die "in the day" that he disobeyed God? Spiritual or literal.

    Its not hard to determine what is literal, and what is physical. Its a liitle harder when you have to have everything fit dispensational theolgy.

    The same can be said for those trying to shoe-horn everthing to fit dispensational theology.
     
  16. npetreley

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    Not symbolic at all. Descriptive. When did the sun become as black as a sackcloth of hair? When, at the same time, did the moon become like the color of blood?

    How about a parallel passage on the same events to end all debate? (Well, it SHOULD end all debate but it won't, because preterists, like others who cannot endure sound doctrine, ignore plain language it if contradicts their position.)

    Hmmm...no "as" in there anywhere. It says the sun will be darkened.

    Again, when did all the tribes of the earth mourn? When did they see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory?

    The answer is never - at least not yet.
     
  17. npetreley

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    I have to agree with you here, by the way. But the problem is simply that they generally symbolize the parts that preterists take literally, and take literally the parts that preterists symbolize. It's not a one-for-one exchange, but the principle applies to both sides.

    I'm neither a preterist, nor a dispensationalist, as you can tell.
     
  18. Jo$h

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    Isaiah 34:4 All the host of heaven shall be dissolved,
    And the heavens shall be rolled up like a scroll;
    All their host shall fall down
    As the leaf falls from the vine,
    And as fruit falling from a fig tree.
    5 “For My sword shall be bathed in heaven;
    Indeed it shall come down on Edom,

    When did the host of heaven roll up like a scroll and host fall down in the destruction of Edom?

    Micah 1:3 For behold, the Lord is coming out of His place;
    He will come down
    And tread on the high places of the earth.
    vs 4 The mountains will melt under Him,
    And the valleys will split
    Like wax before the fire,
    Like waters poured down a steep place.

    When did the mountains melt when Assyria carried of the northern tribes? When did God come down, did they see Him? When you understand Jewish apocalyptic literature you will understand the images the prophet is trying to portray and begin to understand the preterist position. It is not a matter of spiritual vs literal, (When God writes His law on our hearts is it physical literal or spiritual literal) it is a matter of historical-grammatical hermenutic, ie what and how did the original audience understand this passage.
     
    #18 Jo$h, Aug 19, 2006
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  19. npetreley

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    Both Isaiah 34 and Micah 1 are references to the Day of the Lord, which is also what Jesus describes in Matthew 24.

    Jesus started out this passage describing real events and is continuing to describe real events, including what people will see. The reason nobody has seen this yet (or seen what is described in Isaiah 34 and Micah 1) is because it hasn't happened yet.

    You can find lots of prophecy that sounds so difficult to picture as being literally fulfilled that one could assume it is symbolic. For example there's the prophecy that the city of Tyre would be scraped flat and thrown into the sea. But the funny thing about it is that it has been fulfilled literally. The city of Tyre really was scraped flat and thrown into the sea by Alexander the great and his army. And the above will happen literally, too, sometime in the future.

     
  20. Grasshopper

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    First, what I hope Jack Matthews does is show his students how this type of language is used by the Prophets in the Old Testament. I’m sure it will be seen that these events did not literally happen. Of course perhaps Jack will first give a brief lesson on the different types of literature found in the Bible. Then Jack will take his students to the New Testament and show them almost identical language. He will probably ask the question, “ If the OT Prophets used this type of language in a figurative/metaphoric way, then why do we assume the NT Prophets used it in a different manner”? At this point the class will probably all agree that it would be foolish to assume the Jews of the 1st century would understand the language differently than their ancestors. It is at this point they have entered the horrible heretical world of Preterism.

    Second, always amusing to see futurist accuse preterist of not taking the Bible literally. Yet it is futurist who re-define such simple words as “near” “soon” “at hand” “ this generation” and “shortly”. Always amusing.



    Here's my definition of futurism (it fits many other doctines, too):

    * When biblical text, interpreted literally, agrees with futurism, that text must be interpreted literally.
    * When biblical text, interpreted literally, contradicts or does not support futurism, that text must be considered symbolic.

    That argument is a double edged sword. You’re too smart for that. Come on, bring you’re A-game.:love2:



    So here we have “soon” meaning over 2000 years. Yet it is the preterist who don’t take the Bible literally? Let me guess, those "some people" you refer to are dispies perhaps?



    Of course if “soon” was all we had, then you might have a point. But just because prophecy isn’t fulfilled the way you like it doesn’t mean you have to say it hasn’t happened yet. Judaism should teach us that.



    1Pe 4:7 But the end of all things has drawn near. Therefore be of sound mind, and be sensible to prayers.

    1Pe 1:20 indeed having been foreknown before the foundation of the world, but revealed in the last times for you,



    Hmm, I guess that makes the great John Gill a borderline heretic:

    John Gill

    Mat 24:29 - Immediately after the tribulation of those days,.... That is, immediately after the distress the Jews would be in through the siege of Jerusalem, and the calamities attending it; just upon the destruction of that city, and the temple in it, with the whole nation of the Jews, shall the following things come to pass; and therefore cannot be referred to the last judgment,


    Once again, the Baptist (non-preterist) John Gill:

    And then shall the tribes of the earth, or land, mourn; that is, the land of Judea; for other lands, and countries, were not usually divided into tribes, as that was; neither were they affected with the calamities and desolations of it, and the vengeance of the son of man upon it; at least not so as to mourn on that account, but rather were glad and rejoiced:

    and they shall see the son of man coming in the clouds of heaven, with power and great glory. The Arabic version reads it, "ye shall see", as is expressed by Christ, in Mat_26:64. Where the high priest, chief priests, Scribes, and elders, and the whole sanhedrim of the Jews are spoken to: and as the same persons,
     

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