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Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by pops01, Aug 30, 2009.
I am wondering if anyone has information on When each of the churches ceased to function.
You might want to check out George W. McDaniel's book The Churches of the New Testament. I believe it's available on Amazon.
While it covers many other churches than the seven in Revelation, it does give some good historical information about those seven.
If you're asking about them as real local churches, that is one thing. If you're asking the question according to the (false) gospel of dispensationalism, that's quite different.
Why do you speak with such a lack of understanding with respect to views that differ from yours, as though it is a fact?
Dispensationalism is not a 'false' gospel because it is not nor has ever been stated to be the 'gospel' message.
Second, the iimplication of it being a 'fasle gospel' if taken in a biblical context means that all those who hold to it are unsaved since the gospel message is specific to salvation. And if the message is incorrect then one is not saved because they do not know the way of peace but a 'false way' that leads to death and seperation from God.
Third, if you would simply read the OP you would know he is asking about them historically.
The essence Dispensationalism is a presentation of the gospel that is different from that of historic Christianity. It is a false intepretation of the Scriptures in that it denies certain aspects of God's character, and by its own defiinition presents different methodologies of salvation.
Having said that, I quite concur with your comments about the consequence of following a 'false gospel' and therefore would rephrase it as a "false or wrong view (or interpretation) of Scripture.
Finally, the OP was clear enough to me, but was just enough ambiguous that it could be interpreted as a dispensational-type question. Some dispensational writers (HAI for instance) attempt to give the precise dates of when these churches ceased dispensationally.
You show a complete lack of knowledge and understanding with respect to this view if the above is an accurate rendering of your understanding of it.
I'm not being snide, only stating a fact.
Dispensationalism holds to salvation being the same in the OT just as it is the NT - by grace through faith though God uses differing means to convey this same truth as He reveals more and more of Himself and salvation. Therefore it stands solid in relation to historic Christianity and as such by no account does it deny any aspects of God's character. To even say as much proves you have almost no understanding of the dispensational view. Please let's stick to the facts and nothing you said concers with them.
Now see, I have no problem with this statement as it reflects your opinion toward the view even though I disagree with you on it :thumbs:
Agreed but they are typically associated with hyper-dipsies. Though many do agree with concept of the churches being representive of church ages as well as literal churches, this view (being representitive) biblically can not be set forth as anything more than an interesting similarity.
Not too long ago (but it seems as if it was before July 2009, your own join date here at the BB) we went through a forum debate in which there was a lengthy discussion around the subject of dispensationalism, preterism, partial preterism, etc.
We briefly discussed the subject of the 7 churches, that they were actual historic churches with little or no mention as to the actual date of their "candlestick" being put out along with their farther reaching possible meanings. Basically we agreed that they are/were actual churches whose spiritual problems exist to this very day within the realm of Christianity.
But as to your statement concerning historic Christianity and dispensationlism, there were quotes from early church fathers in the debate that were given supporting such teachings as a literal 1000 year reign of Christ (The Chiliad), the Tribulation (Jacob's trouble), references to Daniel chapter 7 and the antichrist and many other elements of differing authors concering what is modernly called "dispensationalism" but identified under different names.
Now the writings of the early church fathers do not define Christianity, but (since you used the word "historic"), they are the most reliable source of "historic" post-apostolic Christianity and various other areas of early church teachings.
My point is that certain areas of thought in Christianity (e.g. Trinitariansm) often took centuries to develope and not identified as such in the past by their modern names, This does not mean that the basic and foundational elements of these areas of thought were not there.
Dispensationalism is such an area of thought. Modernly developed and identified as such. Obviously, variations and differences are not a few as any other body of organized thought.
Given, there are those who go overboard as to the metaphorical/allegorical interpretations of Scripture within the realm of "dispensationalism".
i.e. and e.g. In another area such as calvinism: Did the elements of calvinism exist before Calvin? Many have asked, where was "Calvinism" before Calvin was born? Historically, the elements of TULIP were discussed from the beginning but not identified as such. There are several differing camps of calvinism as well.
As to the O/P, If you know how to scan through the BB and the archives you may be able to find specific "historic" dates of the dates of these 7 local churches.
Or, do a "Google" on "7 churches of Revelation", you will find over 4 million references (which, no doubt, cannot be researched in a day).
lol...three posts into this earnest question we've already got a dog fight! hahaha
First, I was raised and then took my initial training and began my ministry as a dispensationalist. I have a bit of an understanding of it.
But is it not you who says that sinners were saved without being regenerated in the OT. They could have faith, but were not regenerated? You can slice it any way you wish, but in that is a "different gospel" for two different "dispensations".
We can argue this one indefinitely and probably never agree on it, so I'll just leave it at that.
A final thought. Just because I disagree with your theological views, does not mean I don't understand them. It just means that ... well ... I disagree with them.:thumbsup:
I am asking according to Revelation where they are mentioned pure and simple why do you digress ?
Each church/city ceased for different reasons at different years do you know the specific years and reason or not?
one was in 1822-1840's - some failed because of earthquakes and were never reestablished (Year??). The last one failed in 1922 actually none could have been left after that date.
Now my question is seeking specific data - PLEASE!
I appreciate the fullness and candor of your answer. I do not deny that there are dispensations (eras) in history, and that some early church fathers recognized such a thing.
But there is a huge difference between saying there are dispensations, and what is being taught under the heading of "Dispensationalism".
All Dispensationalists believe there are dispensations, but not all who believe there are dispensations are dispensationalists. It's not really as confusing as it may first appear.:laugh:
IF you were truly raised and trained in dispensationalism, then this type of statement is inexcusable. As a dispensationalist, I can fully affirm that there are not differnet methodologies of salvation, that it doesn't deny certain aspects of God's character (but rather affirms them better than covenantalists do), and that it is not different than historic Christianity in the gospel.
You are confusing what some dispensationalists teach with what dispensationalism teaches. They are, in some doctrines quite different. Dispensationalism has a sine qua non that doesn't really deal with the gospel. Dispensationalists who teach two ways of salvation (or three as some do), are false teachers and should be marked as such. Dispensationalists who fully affirm the biblical gospel should not be confused with these.
Such an attempt is utterly indefensible.
To the OP, Colin Hemer (The Letters to the Seven Churches of Asia in their Local Setting) is probably the definitive work on this topic. Ramsey was the precursor to this, but Hemer surpassed him.
Yes, I understand. "dispensationalism" seems to have more of its share of those who cross the line of credulity.
While this is somewhat removed from the O/P it is related and important when dealing with the 7 churches of the Revelation.
One's interpretation of the Book of Revelation does have a bearing though. Thus the current side issue.
As to OT regeneration, I would agree.
Jesus fully expected Nicodemus to understand what He was talking about when addressing the "born again" issue:
10 Jesus answered and said unto him, Art thou a master of Israel, and knowest not these things?
Also Paul in addressing those of old who were born of the Spirit:
28 Now we, brethren, as Isaac was, are the children of promise.
29 But as then he that was born after the flesh persecuted him that was born after the Spirit, even so it is now.
My own focus would be the distinction of "redeemed" Israel and the church of Matthew 16:18.
Even in the eternal state (New Jerusalem) those born again in these 2 eras (OT,NT) though both citizens of the New Jerusalem are kept distinct (for whatever reason God has chosen) or so seems the lesson from the apparent metaphors of Revelation 21.
1 And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea.
2 And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.
12 And had a wall great and high, and had twelve gates, and at the gates twelve angels, and names written thereon, which are the names of the twelve tribes of the children of Israel:
13 On the east three gates; on the north three gates; on the south three gates; and on the west three gates.
14 And the wall of the city had twelve foundations, and in them the names of the twelve apostles of the Lamb.
I have yet to see a decent buttal to dispensationalism in this thread. Though it is claimed dispensationalism is an abborgation of the Gospel, we have yet to see any substantive interaction about why it is a false Gospel.
And I'm not a dispensationalist.
I believe some feel that it has a false gospel associated with it because of those "dispensationalists" and cultists who have made it more than what it is/was meant to be - a method of historic interpetation of God's dealing with man.
It is not a systematic theology (though dispensationalists author Systematic Theologies. i.e Lewis Sperry Chafer) .
No one was ever or will ever be saved apart from the gospel of the blood atonement of Jesus Christ by grace through faith in His death burial and resurrection for the forgiveness of sins.
Go back and read because there is the exact OPPOSITE of my position.
There is no problem disagreeing with views, but when you claim to be speaking for or of the views of another, and you get them wrong then it is apparent you don't understand them.
I maintain that Dispensationalism as taught by Scofield himself presents different gospels.
The following quote by O.T. Allis puts it fairly clear. (emphasis mine)
"The very heart of the Bible is its message of Salvation. It is because it gives the only true and adequate answer to the question, "What must I do to be saved ? " that the Bible is the most precious Book in the world. Now the question may very properly be asked in view of the alleged distinct dispensations, whether the Bible gives a consistent answer to this question throughout or not. In 'Rightly Dividing the Word of Truth', Dr. Scofield makes a statement that is arresting to say the least, "It should be needless to say that, in this Dispensation, neither Jew nor Gentile can be saved otherwise than by the exercise of that faith on the Lord Jesus Christ whereby both are born again..." (p.5) Why the qualifying words, "in this Dispensation" ? the reader naturally asks. Have there been or are there to be dispensations of which this could not be said ? The very fact that the statement is qualified implies or at least suggests an affirmative answer.
But the question is far too important to leave the answer to mere inference. Is there definite warrant for such an inference ? For an answer to our question we turn back to the Scofield Bible. A comment on the word "Gentiles " at Matt. x. 5 reads thus : "The kingdom was promised to the Jews. Gentiles could be blessed only through Christ crucified and risen. Cf. John xii. 20-24." Here we have a statement that seems clearly to teach that there was an essential difference between salvation for the Jew and salvation for the Gentile. The one needed the kingdom, the other needed Christ crucified and risen. (10) We turn to a still more noteworthy statement. In the comment on the word "everlasting" in the phrase "everlasting gospel" (Rev. xiv. 6) we are told in the Scofield Bible that "four forms of the Gospel are to be distinguished". They are the Gospel of the kingdom, the Gospel of the grace of God, the everlasting Gospel, and what Paul calls "my Gospel". The statements regarding all four are informing and should be carefully studied by every one who really desires to understand Dispensationalism."
And another quote to show that Dispensationalism teaches different gospels (according to Scofield)
"(i) The Gospel of the kingdom. This is the good news that God purposes to set up on the earth, in fulfilment of the Davidic Covenant (2 Sam. vii. 16, and refs.) a kingdom, political, spiritual, Israelitish, universal, over which God's Son, David's heir, shall be King, and which shall be, for one thousand years, the manifestation of the righteousness of God in human affairs. See Matt. iii. 2, note.
"Two preachings of this Gospel are mentioned, one past, beginning with the ministry of John the Baptist, continued by our Lord and His disciples, and ending with the Jewish rejection of the King. The other is yet future (Matt. xxiv. 14), during the great tribulation, and immediately preceding the coming of the King in glory.
(2) The Gospel of the grace of God. This is the good news that Jesus Christ, the rejected King, has died on the cross for the sins of the world, that He was raised from the dead for our justification, and that by Him all that believe are justified from all things. This form of the Gospel is described in many ways. It is the Gospel 'of God' (Rom. i. i), because it originates in His love ; 'of Christ' (2 Cor. x. 14) because it flows from His sacrifice, and because He is the alone Object of Gospel faith ; of 'the grace of God' (Acts xx. 24) because it saves those whom the law curses ; of 'the glory' (I Tim. i. 11 ; 2 Cor. iv. 4) because it concerns Him who is in the glory, and who is bringing the many sons to glory (Heb. ii. 10); of our salvation' (Eph. i. 13) because it is the 'power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth (Rom. i. 16) ; of 'the uncircumcision' (Gal. ii.
7) because it saves wholly apart from forms and ordinances ; of 'peace' (Eph. vi. 15) because through Christ it makes peace between the sinner and God, and imparts inward peace." (p.1343, note 1)
* * * * * * * * *
The most startling thing about these two "forms" of the Gospel, when we compare them, is their mutual exclusiveness. The one speaks of the Davidic King, the other of the crucified and risen Saviour. The Gospel of the grace of God-in a word, the Cross-belongs to the Church age; the Gospel of the kingdom was preached before the Church was founded and is to be preached after the Church is "raptured ". But it is a different Gospel. It is the Gospel of the Crown, not the Cross. This is consistent Dispensationalism. c "Grace" and "the Kingdom " belong to two distinct dispensations which are set definitely inontraitsst, and each has a Gospel of own (11).
Salvation clearly will be on a quite different basis in the Kingdom age from what it is today in the Church age.
Hi again Lux,
It is good that you qualified “dispensationalism” with the words “according to Scofield”.
IMO, two improper views are advanced: 1) to define the word “gospel” as the generic term “good news” where it seems convenient. e.g. the “gospel” of the kingdom as not referring to the one gospel of grace and faith in Christ and it’s aspect within the current dispensation.
Or, 2) as Scofield seems to say (as you have illustrated) that there is a saving “gospel” apart from grace and faith in Christ/Messiah.
Personally I don’t think that #2 is what Scofield is saying (although there are certainly those who have taught that error). It seems to me in being consistent with “dispensationalism” that he is referring to the economy of God according to the current revelation of the kinsman/redeemer and how it relates to that one gospel (the salvation of the coming Messiah).
However, you are correct, here and in other of his writings he appears to say that there is a saving “gospel” apart from the one gospel of grace and faith in Christ/Messiah.
Even before the law under the so-called “Dispensation of Promise” (It seems that Job might have been contemporary with Abraham) we have the following:
23 Oh that my words were now written! oh that they were printed in a book!
24 That they were graven with an iron pen and lead in the rock for ever!
25 For I know that my redeemer liveth, and that he shall stand at the latter day upon the earth:
26 And though after my skin worms destroy this body, yet in my flesh shall I see God:
27 Whom I shall see for myself, and mine eyes shall behold, and not another; though my reins be consumed within me.
This apparently was not a full revelation to this point concerning Christ (if indeed it was all Job knew), who was to come, redeem him and resurrect him. Obviously Job did not have 1 Corinthians 15:1-4 to read but what Job did know of Him and His salvation, he received by grace and believed by faith.
However, here is Chafer’s rebuttal to contemplate:
IMO, The gospel of the kingdom preached by John the Baptist, was “the” gospel as far as it had been previously revealed. Indeed, John had been given additional revelation:
John 1:29 The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.
11 I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance: but he that cometh after me is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear: he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and with fire:
12 Whose fan is in his hand, and he will throughly purge his floor, and gather his wheat into the garner; but he will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire.
Rather than say that John’s Gospel of the kingdom is different than the Gospel of grace and faith, it is proper IMO to say that John’s gospel of the kingdom is the gospel of grace and faith in Christ/Messiah as far as had been previously revealed and as pertinent in its many aspects to the knowledge and understanding of the hearers.
I would also like to see this information, it would be quite interesting. I have never seen information about this subject, but would like to have it for future reference. If you have any pieces of the puzzle, perhaps you can post those and see if anyone has the other pieces.
Pops, digression is one of the finer arts of this board. Its second cousin is Hi-jacking, which is less subtle, but with the same results. The question of the OP is NOT addressed.