Preterism is a Better View of the Bible than Futurism for Someone Suffering

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by Logos1, May 23, 2011.

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  1. Logos1

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    Which view of the bible is more comforting for someone in pain, suffering a loss or needing comfort for some reason.

    If you didn’t know the difference between a preterist view and a futurists view of the bible and were starting fresh which view of the bible would be more comforting—Preterism.

    In a futurists view you have to change the meaning of works like “coming soon” and “this generation” to mean things that are uncommon, not used anywhere else, and if you don’t know the futurists code to understand these words it makes no sense whatsoever.

    On the other hand in the preterist’s view you can use the normal everyday meaning of the words just as you would anywhere else and you understand their meaning.

    Further if you needed comfort and wanted to feel like you could put your trust in what the bible says which is more comforting to see Christ promise to come back soon and still be waiting 2,000 later or realize he came back in 70 AD and kept his promise to come back soon. A promise made and a promise kept is far more reassuring than a promise with no fulfillment.

    Preterism is a far more understandable and comforting view of the bible than futurism to someone who needs comfort, reassurance, and something concrete to hold on to in times of stress.
     
  2. John of Japan

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    This is pragmatism, the view that "what works" indicates truth. And it's false. I suggest you go to the Word of God for your view rather than pragmatism.

    The view that Christ is coming again physically is specifically stated to be comforting in the Word of God:
    Paul ties the 2nd coming here to a physical event, the resurrection of Jesus Christ. Therefore, it is clear that he means the 2nd coming also to be considered a physical event. Christ did not physically come in 70 AD.

    The future physical coming of Jesus Christ is very comforting to me. It helps me know all will be okay, Christ knows about it all, and someday He will come to fix it all.
     
  3. Logos1

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    Thanks for Proving My Point John--Good to work with you on this one

    Forgive me for pointing out the obvious John, but the verse you draw your comfort from makes no mention of a “physical second coming.” You read that into it because it is habit to you, but a closer reading will prove that it is not there.

    I don’t remember the thrust of this post being about physical vs spiritual coming anyway.

    However, I know where you are coming from John. I’ve seen your comments before that since Jesus came in the flesh the first time that points to a physical coming the second time around also. You again choose to overlook the obvious.

    The first time around there were specific prophecies that required a physical coming. The prophecies concerning the “second coming” don’t require a physical coming—it’s just habit to think of it that way.

    But again you miss the point—someone not schooled in the code of futurists speak and reading the bible as a new Christian would get more comfort out of ordinary use of the language and a fulfilled promise on the “second coming” rather than just being hung out to dry in limbo waiting their whole lifetime for it when instead they could be celebrating the victory they already have in Christ.
     
  4. John of Japan

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    You did not answer my exegetical point in the passage.

    (1) Do you or do you not believe that Jesus rose physically, bodily from the dead?

    (2) If your answer to this is yes, He rose bodily, then you must answer my next point to be credible. If your answer is no, He did not rise bodily from the dead, then you should not be posting on the BB.

    (3) At what point in 1 Thess. 4:14-15 did Paul cease talking about the physical presence of Christ and start talking about the spiritual presence of Christ? The verses are connected grammatically by the "For" at the beginning of 15.
     
  5. John of Japan

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    Is or is not this thread about the 2nd coming of Christ? And if He came in 70 AD that was spiritual, according to you, correct? So what's your beef?
     
  6. HankD

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    OK how about the normal everyday meaning of:

    Matthew 24
    29 Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken:
    30 And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.​
    31 And he shall send his angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other

    Acts 1
    9 And when he had spoken these things, while they beheld, he was taken up; and a cloud received him out of their sight.
    10 And while they looked stedfastly toward heaven as he went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel;
    11 Which also said, Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven.

    Revelation 1
    7 Behold, he cometh with clouds; and every eye shall see him, and they also which pierced him: and all kindreds of the earth shall wail because of him. Even so, Amen.

    HankD​
     
  7. thomas15

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    To get the most benefit from theology, I imagine that a suffering person would want the truth, the truth contained within the Bible. Before one can be a preterist, one needs to believe in Reformed/Covenant theology.

    On January 7, 2011 while doing a shift as a volunteer EMT, I fell on the ice and snow and spiral fractured my left tibia and fibula. On January 13, I had a plate, 7 screws and a pin implanted. This put me out of work for a time and was as they say a bit inconvient. Basically I had nothing to do but read the Bible for about 7-8 weeks. During that time I read the NT twice. Over the last 35 years I have read the entire Bible cover to cover in an organized fashon at least 10 times, probably more. Over the last 7 -8 years I have read the Bible for a minimum of 1 hour per day, every day. In all that reading I have not once stumbled on a passage of Scripture that teaches that God cut any Covenant of works, or grace or redemption with man.

    Even on that PB forum, where Covenant theology rules the day and any futurist is laughed out of existence, when asked where in the actual Bible Jehovah God cut any of the three widely held covenants, the answers stumble and finally the historic teachings of the church and reformers and confessions are brought into view.

    But yet in my misery of late I found a great deal of comfort in the words of the Bible in spite of my futurist view of things. I believe that Jesus will come again to gather up his saints in the clouds of glory. It will be a seminal event in human history, not hidden from the unbelieving masses and secular historians. I hope that it happens in my day but if it doesn't, I still get to be with Christ my Savior.

    I believe that we who are alive when Christ returns for His own will be joined by those who sleep in Christ. My comfort is in knowing that my Savior Jesus already bought my salvation at the cross. When I consider the seriousness of God's love for me that while I was yet a sinner, Christ died for me and compare that work of love to the unlikely idea that the preterist teaching that Babylon in Revelation ch 17 is a code word for Jerusalem, comfort falls away from the equation, replaced with a sense of pity for those who cannot accept the plain teaching of the Bible and own a lack of appreciation for historical fact. In light of this I view the preterist as those who rather spend their time attempting to win a theological agruement which has at it's core a private (and unlikely) interpretation of the Scriptures rather than allow the Bible to speak to their needs as a sinner saved by grace.

    This futurist started physical therapy and resumed regular employment with a renewed sense of urgency to spread the message of God's love in Christ and to personally be ready for I know not when that day of Christ's return may be. It could be today.

    Why Mr. Preterist is it not reasonable to say that if I can find comfort in God's love in the actual words Bible in the year 2011, that my brothers in the first century could not likewise find the same degree of comfort from the same words in God's Holy book without assuming that some unproven historical event happened in the intervening 21 centuries?
     
  8. Tom Bryant

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    Yes, one can be comforted by the fact that Christ came back 2,000 years ago and life still stinks. :laugh: "Yes, He kept his promise to come back, but nothing is better." what a wonderful comfort! ... not.

    But John's statement that this is an argument based on pragmatism. What makes ME feel better is obviously true. The problem with your argument as I see it is that your view is not comforting at all.
     
  9. JesusFan

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    Are you saying here that IF jesus did not come back in 70 AD, than the promise was not fulfilled?

    The Second Coming of Christ is a blessing to both us and this World...
    promise that I will one day have my physical body raised and glorified to be as He now is, AND this earth will finally have Jesus/God directly ruling over it, Paradise restored Satan bound...

    IF Jesus actually did come back, do you see this World right now running under His reign, with Satan bound?
    If yes, how can you say that with all sin and misery around us still?
     
  10. Logos1

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    Different thread same MO

    I’m on to how you operate John. Since you didn’t want to answer the point of the thread—you try to twist it around to what you do want to argue, then make a Greek usage issue out of it, then declare the Greek of the other party as insufficient and then declare answer superior. It gets pretty transparent after a while.

    As I said before when you only have one tool and it’s a hammer every problem looks like it needs a nail.

    This is the second time you have dodged the issue of the thread—why don’t you answer it or just move on to what you do want to post about.

    It’s about Preterism being a more reassuring view of the bible than futurism for someone who is suffering or is a new Christian or at that point in time a non-Christian. Let me cut and past the opening of the thread again for you.

    “Which view of the bible is more comforting for someone in pain, suffering a loss or needing comfort for some reason.

    If you didn’t know the difference between a preterist view and a futurists view of the bible and were starting fresh which view of the bible would be more comforting”
     
  11. Logos1

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    Third time to say this—One of us is lost and I don’t think it is me since I started t


    No John it’s not—let me cut and past the opening of the thread a second time for you

    “Which view of the bible is more comforting for someone in pain, suffering a loss or needing comfort for some reason.

    If you didn’t know the difference between a preterist view and a futurists view of the bible and were starting fresh which view of the bible would be more comforting”
     
  12. Logos1

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    Greetings Hank,

    Well this is a little off the main point of the thread—but I’ll go ahead and bite one time since I humored John’s first response with an answer.

    You didn’t specifically say you were making the point that these were indications of a literal, physical return of Christ—but I think I can fairly surmise that is what you are getting at here.

    Your Matthew passage:
    This repeats Isaiah 13:10 For the stars of the heavens and their constellations
    will not give their light;
    the sun will be dark at its rising,
    and the moon will not shed its light.

    This was an oracle against historical Babylon of the OT and shows us how to understand this language of the sun being dark and the moon not giving light—it indicates the fall of a nation. The heavens weren’t literally doing anything different in the Old Testament in this example.

    Here the reference is to Jerusalem’s fall after its tribulation period (war with Rome).

    I think you have found something interesting here though—this might help explain the tie-in between Jerusalem and the usage of the term Babylon to describe it in Revelation.

    Also note in verse 30 it doesn’t say the Son of Man will appear in the sky—it says his Sign will appear—The sign was the Roman army exacting vengeance on Jerusalem. The sign indicates that he is in heaven.

    Your Acts passage:
    Surely one of the most misunderstood passages in the bible. Notice verse 9 states he disappeared from their sight.

    There are two preterist’s explanations for this. 1. That he comes back not in a physical way, but out of sight, spiritual, etc in that he comes back in judgment of Jerusalem in the form of the Roman army and this is understood to be his sovereign rule of the affairs of men just like in Isaiah 19:1 when God rides a swift cloud against Egypt—no one actually saw God riding a cloud, but they understood him to be behind the judgment of Israel.

    Myself I find the second explanation more plausible—that this passage makes no reference at all to his “second coming” but since he disappears from their sight—the two angels come to verify that Christ went to heaven when he left earth and the “coming in” is coming into heaven.

    Your Revelation passage:
    This does tie neatly back into the Isaiah 19:1 verse—another cloud coming (common way to reference the presence of the Lord) every eye—everyone one sees with their mind—understands that the judgment coming on Jerusalem is the Lord’s doing just like the understand the destruction coming on Egypt is the work of the Lord.

    And with that I’ll get back to the main point of the thread.

    Take care Hank.
     
  13. Logos1

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    Thomas

    Thomas,

    I enjoyed your testimony and say Amen to it, but you are not addressing the point of the thread. I notice that your injury happened earlier this year and that you have been posting here since 2007 and I suspect were a Christian before then—but even if you became a Christian the day you started posting here—you still had about 4 years to learn futuristic speak and how to learn the futuristic code of how to interpret the passages regarding prophecy. Maybe you misunderstood the point of the thread, but you are not someone who qualifies as not knowing the differences between the two schools of thought and simply had to the read the passages straight up with no bias brought into the equation.

    I wish you the best with your recovery.
     
  14. Logos1

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    Tom

    You obviously missed the point of his return—upon his return you now go straight to heaven when you die to be in the presence of the Lord instead of waiting in Sheol for the redemptive work of Christ to be completed. As a preterist I’m celebrating Christ’s victory over death and sin and our separation from God.

    Sadly you are left to interpret his return as recreating planet earth into a paradise and will be waiting forever for a victory that never comes. Inadvertently you have helped illustrate the superiority of preterism over futurism.
     
  15. Logos1

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    Say what?

    JesusFan

    This is not much of a response to my thread—it just kind of rambles along without any clear direction.

    Sure the coming of Christ is always a blessing whether his first coming or two Saul on the Damascus road or his appearance to Stephen or any other times he blessed anyone with an appearance.

    I think Christ spoke to your general point when he said John 18:36
    Jesus answered, "My kingdom is not of this world. (i.e. spiritual in nature)
    Obviously Satan’s hold or sin’s hold over you has been bound since you now go into the presence of the Lord upon death if you are a Chrisian.
     
  16. Logos1

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    Making my Point for Me--thanks all

    Now that I’ve given everyone a fair response individually let me say that of all the responses that no one has addressed the point of the thread—that preterism is a superior model for someone who doesn’t know future speak and how to decode the time statements and how that near, soon, quickly, at hand, etc don’t really mean Jesus is coming back soon. You have to know how to properly change the normal everyday meaning of these words to get any comfort out of futurism.

    For someone in need of comfort or new to reading and understanding the bible—preterism is straight forward—allows the normal everyday usage of words without needing the decoder ring to grasp their meaning.

    It views God’s promises of a return as already fulfilled and our having victory in Christ now not waiting lifetime after lifetime in vain for fulfillment.

    So far these responses have just been helping to make the preterist case.

    Thanks guys.
     
  17. John of Japan

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    Knowing your aversion to the Greek (in spite of it being the language the NT was originally written in), I avoided all mention of it in my post. I am just as comfortable in the English Bible. So, care to debate the English Bible? (Oh and by the way, I never declare my Greek to be superior, though I do declare my Greek tools to be superior. I just never see anyone answering my points from the Greek.)
    Let me get this straight. In your OP you talked about Christ coming in 70 AD. Then you talked about your preterism being a comfort because Christ kept His promise to come then.

    But when I bring up and try to discuss the only--the only--passage in the NT which teaches that the 2nd coming of Christ is a comfort, I'm dodging the issue. Is that your view?
    And I said the futurist view was more comforting because the Bible--quoting the English KJV--talks about comfort and the 2nd coming. My belief in the future, literal, physical 2nd coming of Christ is far more comforting to me than some spiritual coming in 70 AD that no one saw, no one recorded and no one can prove.

    End of story and end of debate, if you don't want to discuss the Word of God.
     
    #17 John of Japan, May 24, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: May 24, 2011
  18. thomas15

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    I understand the point and addressed it. You Sir are doing what preterists do best and is the only option available and that is to confuse and change the subject, rather than deal with the data available.
     
  19. HankD

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    Thanks Logos1.

    I disagree that my inquiry is off the main point.

    In fact it is the essence of the point concerning a statement in the O/P:

    You responded to my inquiry as to the plain and simple meaning of the scriptures I presented with explanations and additional scripture.

    Allow me the same recourse as to the meaning of “coming soon” and “this generation”.

    "coming soon" The Scripture defines "soon" from God's perspective:

    2 Peter 3:8 But, beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.​

    "this generation" the generation present on earth at His second coming.
    The events thereof to come quickly within that generation.​

    Matthew 24:34 Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled.​

    Lastly, I would draw no comfort from believing that Christ had already returned, yet here am I on earth, a planet filled with sin and violence yet somehow Christ had bound satan in the lake of fire.
    In addition I have a mortal body which contradicts the scripture concerning Christ return:​

    1 John 3:2 Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is.​

    Luke 24:39 Behold my hands and my feet, that it is I myself: handle me, and see; for a spirit hath not flesh and bones, as ye see me have.​

    Which also vindicates the Acts passage that Jesus left in a material body and shall return likewise.

    Acts 1:11 Which also said, Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven.​


    We have been down this road often.
    Thank you for your civility brother.

    HankD​
     
  20. annsni

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    Honestly, this sounds like the argument "A loving God wouldn't send people to hell" and so we now come up with the idea that no one goes to hell and that instead they do kind of a purgatory that isn't terrible and then everyone will be in heaven with Christ forever. Yes, it's a MUCH more comforting thought to everyone around us - and that is why the world believes it. However, it's not Scriptural, nor is the view that Christ had to have come back in 70 AD because it's just so much more comforting to someone suffering. I'm sorry but we just went through hell with my 21 year old daughter having a baseball sized mass on her pancreas. She did not recover well and it was very hard to hear one of the top pancreas surgeons in the country say "I just don't know what else to do" as your daughter is vomiting even her own saliva. To have thought that this is all that's promised would have had me toss myself from the 6th floor of New York Presbyterian. Seriously. It is no comfort to think that this is what the world looks like with God ruling and Satan bound. I thank God that I still have His promise of the future - and not to see it in the past and look at this world as it is now.
     
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