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The harlot in Revelation 17 is Jerusalem of Jesus' day

Discussion in '2000-02 Archive' started by flaman, Dec 13, 2001.

  1. Pastor Larry

    Pastor Larry <b>Moderator</b>
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    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Chris Temple:
    The NT makes it quite clear that the promises to Israel are fulfilled in New Israel, the Church. There is no failure of fulfilment to Israel, as Paul's apostolic interpretation of the promise is authoritatively articulated in Romans 11. Israel will be grafted back in, not to possess the material land, but the spiritual kingdom along with believing Gentiles. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Alright, I will for the moment play along with your assertion. Tell me how any Jew reading Jeremiah in the OT would have gotten anything remotely similar to what you have said.

    Tell me why Christ did not correct his disciples in Acts 1.

    Tell me why Peter preached a future coming kingdom in Acts 3:19-21.

    Tell me why Paul talks of all Israel being saved after the completion of the Gentiles, clearly making a distinction between the two. He quotes an OT passage about the New Covenant and then talks about "them" and "you," in context "them" being Israel and "you" being the church. You quote it below. Do more than quote it; interact with what it actually says.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Both believing Jews and Gentiles will possess the New Heaven and the New Earth with Christ forever.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    No dispensationalist disputes this.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Gal 6:15 For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision avails anything, but a new creation.
    16 And as many as walk according to this rule, peace and mercy be upon them, and upon the Israel of God.
    <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    No dispensationalist disagrees with this either. Notice the distinction between "in Christ Jesus" and "the Israel of God."

    From Burton, (ICC): "... There is, in fact, no instance of [Paul's] using Israel except of the Jewish nation or a part thereof. These facts favour the interpretation of the expression as applying not to the Christian community, but to Jews ... In this case the benediction falls into two distinct parts."

    From Bruce, NIGTC): "F. Mussner probably indicates the true sense when he identifies the Israel of God here with pas israel of Romans 11:26. For all his demoting of the law and the customs, Paul held good hope of the ultimate blessing of Israel. They were not all in line with 'this rule' yet, but the fact that some Israelites were doing so was in his eyes a pledge that this remnant would increase until, with the ingathering of the full tale of Gentiles, 'all Israel will be saved.' The invocation of blessing on the Israel of God has probably an eschatological perspective."

    The text does not make a equate Israel and the church. It makes them distinct in this passage.
     
  2. Pastor Larry

    Pastor Larry <b>Moderator</b>
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    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Chris Temple:


    !?!? :confused:

    It most certainly is a prophecy! What does Matthew say?<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>


    The first question you must ask is "What did Hosea say?" Since you asked, let's look at it. Three verses will be sufficient though if you wish you can read the rest of it:

    Hosea 11:1 When Israel was a youth I loved him, And out of Egypt I called My son.
    2 The more they called them, The more they went from them; They kept sacrificing to the Baals And burning incense to idols.
    3 Yet it is I who taught Ephraim to walk, I took them in My arms; But they did not know that I healed them.

    There is nothing in this passage that prophesies of Christ. It is a historical accounting of the history of the children of Israel. The references to disobedience and false worship certainly preclude a reference to Christ.

    So then the question is, How did Matthew use it?

    Matthew’s use of plhrovw is “very wide-ranging and flexible and embraces many different kinds of correspondence between and OT passage and a NT event" (Grogan, "Isaiah," EBC on Isaiah 7:14). Hagner (Matthew, WBC) says, “The quoted texts themselves are as a rule not even predictive of future events” (Donald A. Hagner, Matthew 1–13 WBC [Dallas, TX: Word, 1993], p. lv). The use of pleroo can be varied enough to use it in a typological or illustrative sense, as no doubt Matthew does. But those passages where he does so are, like Hagner says, not predictive passages.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>A prophetic word was spoken and fulfilled. That is prophecy. This is the problem with the dispensational hermeneutic.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Except it wasn't prophecy, as shown by the original context of Hosea. EVerything in the Prophets is not prophecy. The problem with the covenant hermeneutic is that it ignores the meaning of the text in its context in order to shoehorn other things into it.
     
  3. Chris Temple

    Chris Temple New Member

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    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Pastor Larry:
    Alright, I will for the moment play along with your assertion. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Gee, thanks so much :rolleyes:


    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Tell me how any Jew reading Jeremiah in the OT would have gotten anything remotely similar to what you have said.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Did they need to? Didn't Chick mention above that the first generation audience didn't need to clearly understand what the message was? Otherwise prophecy would have to be fulfilled in the generation which heard it. You can't have it two ways. It was to point to Christ, as the NT tells us. This is the major error of dispensationalism, IMO; the hermeneutic that says the OT interprets the new, and was written to be understood by unregenerate Jews, when the NT teaches the Bible was written for believing Christians.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Tell me why Christ did not correct his disciples in Acts 1.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    He had no need or desire to because he wasn't addressing that issue. In fact, he ignored it.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Tell me why Peter preached a future coming kingdom in Acts 3:19-21.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Acts 3:19-21 (ESV)
    Repent therefore, and turn again, that your sins may be blotted out, [20] that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord, and that he may send the Christ appointed for you, Jesus, [21] whom heaven must receive until the time for restoring all the things about which God spoke by the mouth of his holy prophets long ago.

    The coming restoration is the restored Paradise of the New Earth, not some Jewish dream of a material earthly kingdom.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Tell me why Paul talks of all Israel being saved after the completion of the Gentiles, clearly making a distinction between the two. He quotes an OT passage about the New Covenant and then talks about "them" and "you," in context "them" being Israel and "you" being the church. You quote it below. Do more than quote it; interact with what it actually says.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Because he is speaking of two groups becoming one, which no one ever thought could be one, after speaking of the condemnation of Israel in Rom 9-10? You put forth an artificial two-people scenario which does not exist. Romans 10:11-13 (ESV)tells us:

    For the Scripture says, "Everyone who believes in him will not be put to shame." [12] For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; the same Lord is Lord of all, bestowing his riches on all who call on him. [13] For "everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved."

    There is no distinction betwen Jew and Gentile in Christ.

    Romans 11:11-12 (ESV)
    So I ask, did they stumble in order that they might fall? By no means! Rather through their trespass salvation has come to the Gentiles, so as to make Israel jealous. [12] Now if their trespass means riches for the world, and if their failure means riches for the Gentiles, how much more will their full inclusion mean!

    Their full inclusion is into the Redeemed, the Church. Scripture knows of no other Redeemed.

    [ December 20, 2001: Message edited by: Chris Temple ]
     
  4. Pastor Larry

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    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>PL: Tell me how any Jew reading Jeremiah in the OT would have gotten anything remotely similar to what you have said. CT: Did they need to? Didn't Chick mention above that the first generation audience didn't need to clearly understand what the message was? Otherwise prophecy would have to be fulfilled in the generation which heard it. You can't have it two ways. It was to point to Christ, as the NT tells us. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Yes they needed to have some understanding of it. By saying what you have said, you have removed the perspicuity of Scripture. A full understanding? No. Some understanding? Absolutely. Even a full understanding would not require fulfillment in the immediate generation though. That is a straw man created to strengthen your point.

    No one argues that the NC was to point to Christ. That is not the point. (I don’t know how many times I have to keep saying that). The point is: The NC was made with a specific group of people as defined by all the passages that discuss the NC. When you read the NC passages, you continually see references to national Jews, such as are defined by their heritage. There is no exegetical way to escape that point. It is clear from the NT that the church does not meet those qualifications. So if you interpret the OT by the NT, you must of necessity say that the church cannot fulfill the promises because the NT people of God are not defined as the OT people of God are. You have God making a promise to a people that he never intended to keep. That is a serious issue.

    Can God make a promise to you and fulfill it to someone else while ignoring you? Obviously not. But you believe that God can make a promise to someone else and then fulfill it to you. To me, that is not the way Scripture describes God’s faithfulness.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>This is the major error of dispensationalism, IMO; the hermeneutic that says the OT interprets the new, and was written to be understood by unregenerate Jews, when the NT teaches the Bible was written for believing Christians.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    You are wrong on the dispensational hermeneutic on the OT. It does not say that the OT interprets the NT. It teaches that the OT was written to the nation of Israel. The unregenerate would understand the words but not the significance. Anyone, even today, can understand what the text says. Apart from the Spirit of God illuminating them, neither OT Jew nor NT Christian will understand the significance of Scripture. It is clear that the unregenerate Jew did understand the OT. That is why they were looking for a kingdom and that is why Christ said, “The kingdom is in your midst.” They simply were not looking for a King who was a sacrifice because they picked and chose what they would believe and totally missed the significance of some of the passages.

    As for the NT, it was written for Bible-believing Christians. That, by definition rules out the OT people because an OT believer could never be called a Christian. But the NT can never contradict or contravene the OT. To do so would be for God to contradict himself. I think the faithfulness of God is at stake.

    Can God say, as he did in Jer 31, that he will never cast off his people from being a nation for what they have done, and then cast them off in the NT in favor of those among whom there is no Jew nor Gentile? In every thread this has come up, you have consistently failed to answer this question. You cannot continue to ignore the central issue of the discussion. You should do an exegetical study (not an eisogetical one) on Jer 31. Just read the text for what the text itself says.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>PL: Tell me why Christ did not correct his disciples in Acts 1. CT: He had no need or desire to because he wasn't addressing that issue. In fact, he ignored it. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    He did not ignore this issue (at least not in my text; I haven’t checked the ESV yet [​IMG]) He most certainly did address it: Acts 1:7 He said to them, "It is not for you to know times or epochs which the Father has fixed by His own authority; He said it is not yours to know the time or the place; just go and do the work you have been called to do.

    He did not say that they misunderstood. He did not tell them the kingdom was here (which in your theology it was there—right in their hearts). He did not tell them they got it all wrong. In fact, he allowed them to go on thinking that they were to expect the kingdom to be restored. We would question the ethics and integrity of someone who allowed a person to continue thinking something that was untrue when given the opportunity to correct it. I don’t think we should give Christ a “free pass” on this one. There were some things that the disciples were not ready for at various points in their walk with Christ. But along the way, he continually unfolded his teaching until at the last, he gives them all they need. What a great time to explain that the OT conceptions of the kingdom were not what they seemed like. But Christ didn’t do it.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>PL: Tell me why Peter preached a future coming kingdom in Acts 3:19-21. CT: The coming restoration is the restored Paradise of the New Earth, not some Jewish dream of a material earthly kingdom. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Again, what Jew with the OT would have understood this and where would they have understood it from? Where did the “holy prophets long ago” prophesy of the Paradise of the New Earth? Every prophet without exception prophesies of a restored kingdom, not the new heaven and the new earth, something that the Jews never had and therefore could not be restored.

    On Rom 11 it is very interesting to read your response because you didn’t address the issues I pointed out and you didn’t address anything I disagree with.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>[qbFor the Scripture says, "Everyone who believes in him will not be put to shame." [12] For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; the same Lord is Lord of all, bestowing his riches on all who call on him. [13] For "everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved." There is no distinction betwen Jew and Gentile in Christ. [/qb]<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    I do not argue with this point. It doesn’t help your case because no dispensationalist will argue with this. Paul is here talking about the church, those who are in Christ. He does speak of two groups becoming one in the body. But he does not here discuss the transfer of promises from the nation where Jew and Gentile meant everything to a church where Jew and Gentile are not divided. You keep bringing up this point of “Jew and Gentile being one in the church” as if I am going to disagree with you about it. I am not now; I never will. The Jew and Gentile are one in the church. That however does not preclude the fulfillment of God’s promises to the people with whom they were made. What place does the remnant play in your theology? It seems to have none.

    [ December 20, 2001: Message edited by: Pastor Larry ]
     
  5. Pastor Larry

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    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Romans 11:11-12 (ESV)
    So I ask, did they stumble in order that they might fall? By no means! Rather through their trespass salvation has come to the Gentiles, so as to make Israel jealous. [12] Now if their trespass means riches for the world, and if their failure means riches for the Gentiles, how much more will their full inclusion mean!
    Their full inclusion is into the Redeemed, the Church. Scripture knows of no other Redeemed.
    <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Several points are in order:
    1. Have they stumbled so that they fall? In other words, has their sin brought a “irretrievable spiritual ruin” (Moo)? Paul’s answer: Me genioto. In no way; God forbid; by no means. Yet consider your own position. Did Israel’s sin bring irretrievable spiritual ruin? You have said yes. They lost the blessings because of their sin and now they have been transferred to the church. Your position seems in direct contradiction to what Paul says.

    2. Their “full inclusion” seems a bad translation. I do not know why they would translate that. The word is pleroma, a word meaning fullness of completeness. The idea of inclusion is certainly interpretive in the best NIV fashion. [​IMG] The idea is that of restoration. “Paul would then be suggesting that the present “defeat” of Isarel, in which Israel is numerically reduced to a small remnant, will be reversed by the addition of far greater numbers of true believer; this will Israel’s destined ‘fulness’” (Moo, NICNT). In other words, your “full inclusion” is in the church age, meaning that Israel is currently in a blessed state. Yet the whole of Rom 9-11 is clearly negative about the current state of Israel. I do not understand how you can read Rom 9-11 and see anything good about the present state of Israel. It seems abundantly clear that it is now negative until the fullness of the Gentiles comes in, and then the partial hardening will be removed.

    3. Notice the distinction. The church makes Israel jealous. Yet if Israel is the church, then the church makes the church jealous??? Surely not. It would be an absurd statement. This verse assumes the “artificial two people scenario” that you want to deny. If your position is true, this verse makes no sense.

    Consider Moo’s comments again:
    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>As he has summarized the matter in vv. 7-10, the gospel has divided Israel into two parts: a “remnant,” who through the electing grace of God has attained the righteousness revealed in the gospel, and “the rest” hardened by God in their sin and excluded from this righteousness. Paul now asks whether this situation in permanent. His answer? It is not. For the “rejection of Israel as a whole is not God’s last word to Israel. This rejection, Paul argues, is but the first step in an unfolding process. Its second step is of special relevance to the Gentiles: Israel’s repudiation of the blessings naturally belonging to her has caused them to be diverted into a nother, wider, channel, in which they are now flowing to the whole world. But this is not the end of the story. For this flood of blessings will one day be turned again toward Israel. At the climax of this age, her hardening will be removed, and the present tiny remnant of Jewish believers will be expanded to include a much greater number of Jews obedient to the gospel. And so, as Paul puts it in his famous assertion, “All Israel will be saved.” Israel’s rejection is neither total (11:1-10) nor final (11:11-32). <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Lastly, you have not addressed many of the passages that I have cited in support of my position. You have not worked through Jer 31 and Zech 12-14. You have not addressed Rom 11:25-31. These are serious passages (among many others) that render your conclusions questionable. I am interested to see how you explain these passages using normal interpretation.
     
  6. PackerBacker

    PackerBacker New Member

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    Chris & Pastor Larry,

    Just wanted to say I appreciate the time you two are putting into sharing your positions. Your efforts are not in vain because some like myself are benifiting. Thanks
     
  7. Chris Temple

    Chris Temple New Member

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    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Yes they needed to have some understanding of it. By saying what you have said, you have removed the perspicuity of Scripture. A full understanding? No. Some understanding? Absolutely. Even a full understanding would not require fulfillment in the immediate generation though. That is a straw man created to strengthen your point. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
    But what is some understanding? Did they understand that Gen 3:15 is the proto-gospel, pointing to Christ? Did they understand that Psalms 2, 22, etc all speak of Christ? what of Isaiah 53? I have created no strawmen, Larry. Your concern for “perspicuity of the OT” seems to outweigh you concern for NT perspicuity, since apostolic authority interprets the OT in a Christological manner. 1Cor 10:11 “Now these things happened to them as an example, and they were written for our instruction, upon whom the ends of the ages have come.”

    Certainly some understood; those looking for redemption, Messiah and the consolation of Israel (Lk 2.25; Jn 4:25) but for the greater portion of Israel, who “Keep on listening, but do not perceive; [and]Keep on looking, but do not understand.” (Isa 6:9) they never understood, and sought only a material earthly kingdom ,when Christ came to tell them that the Kingdom of God was not material, but spiritual.
    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>No one argues that the NC was to point to Christ. That is not the point. (I don’t know how many times I have to keep saying that).<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
    No need to get sarcastic, Larry. Maybe some of us aren’t on “your level” yet. :rolleyes:
    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>The point is: The NC was made with a specific group of people as defined by all the passages that discuss the NC. When you read the NC passages, you continually see references to national Jews, such as are defined by their heritage. There is no exegetical way to escape that point. It is clear from the NT that the church does not meet those qualifications. So if you interpret the OT by the NT, you must of necessity say that the church cannot fulfill the promises because the NT people of God are not defined as the OT people of God are. You have God making a promise to a people that he never intended to keep. That is a serious issue. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
    So, the NC was made with ethnic Israel?? No, it was made with the elect “from every tribe and tongue and people and nation.” (I don’t know how many times I have to keep saying that) :D For God to make a promise in the OT, pointing to fulfillment in Christ does not negate the OT promise. What is the nation to which God has made the promise? Believers, Spiritual Israel, the sons of Abraham. Ethnic Israel stumbled over this truth: Christ is the fulfillment of the promises to the nation of Israel; that all who believe shall enter into True Israel.

    1 Peter 2:6-10 (ESV)
    For it stands in Scripture:
    "Behold, I am laying in Zion a stone,
    a cornerstone chosen and precious,
    and whoever believes in him will not be put to shame."
    [7] So the honor is for you who believe, but for those who do not believe,
    "The stone that the builders rejected
    has become the cornerstone,"

    [8] and
    "A stone of stumbling,
    and a rock of offense."

    They stumble because they disobey the word, as they were destined to do. [9] But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light. [10] Once you were not a people, but now you are God's people; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy.

    Acts 2:36-40 (ESV) Let all the house of Israel therefore know for certain that God has made him both Lord and Christ, this Jesus whom you crucified." [37] Now when they heard this they were cut to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, "Brothers, what shall we do?" [38] And Peter said to them, "Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. [39] For the promise is for you and for your children and for all who are far off, everyone whom the Lord our God calls to himself." [40] And with many other words he bore witness and continued to exhort them, saying, "Save yourselves from this crooked generation."

    Galatians 3:7-9 (ESV) Know then that it is those of faith who are the sons of Abraham. [8] And the Scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the Gentiles by faith, preached the gospel beforehand to Abraham, saying, "In you shall all the nations be blessed." [9] So then, those who are of faith are blessed along with Abraham, the man of faith.

    Paul answers your “failed promises” argument in Romans:

    Romans 9:6-8 (ESV) But it is not as though the word of God has failed. For not all who are descended from Israel belong to Israel, [7] and not all are children of Abraham because they are his offspring, but "Through Isaac shall your offspring be named." [8] This means that it is not the children of the flesh who are the children of God, but the children of the promise are counted as offspring.
    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>You are wrong on the dispensational hermeneutic on the OT. It does not say that the OT interprets the NT. It teaches that the OT was written to the nation of Israel. The unregenerate would understand the words but not the significance. Anyone, even today, can understand what the text says. Apart from the Spirit of God illuminating them, neither OT Jew nor NT Christian will understand the significance of Scripture. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
    The OT was given to the nation Israel so that the elect would look to Christ for redemption, and the reprobate would be hardened in their sin. It was never given so as to save and earthly, ethnic people a spot of land on earth.
    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR> It is clear that the unregenerate Jew did understand the OT. That is why they were looking for a kingdom and that is why Christ said, “The kingdom is in your midst.” They simply were not looking for a King who was a sacrifice because they picked and chose what they would believe and totally missed the significance of some of the passages. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
    They missed them because the Spirit of God did not open their eyes to this truth. The unregenerate Jews had their eyes falsely focused on an earthly political kingdom, which Christ condemned. Are we to believe they will later at the end of time be rewarded with exactly the false hope of which they were believing?
    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>As for the NT, it was written for Bible-believing Christians. That, by definition rules out the OT people because an OT believer could never be called a Christian. But the NT can never contradict or contravene the OT. To do so would be for God to contradict himself. I think the faithfulness of God is at stake. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
    Your “faithfulness of God is at stake” proposition has already been refuted. The Scriptures, old, and new, were written for the Redeemed of all the ages. “Now these things happened to them as an example, but they were written down for our instruction, on whom the end of the ages has come.” 1 Cor. 10:11 (ESV)
    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Can God say, as he did in Jer 31, that he will never cast off his people from being a nation for what they have done, and then cast them off in the NT in favor of those among whom there is no Jew nor Gentile? In every thread this has come up, you have consistently failed to answer this question. You cannot continue to ignore the central issue of the discussion. You should do an exegetical study (not an eisogetical one) on Jer 31. Just read the text for what the text itself says. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
    It has already been shown that the nation to whom the promises are given is the Nation of God – believers in Christ. (1 Peter 2.6-10). If anyone is guilty of eisogesis, it is the dispensationalist. Your ad hominem is not becoming to your position, Pastor Larry.
    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>He did not say that they misunderstood. He did not tell them the kingdom was here (which in your theology it was there—right in their hearts). He did not tell them they got it all wrong. In fact, he allowed them to go on thinking that they were to expect the kingdom to be restored. We would question the ethics and integrity of someone who allowed a person to continue thinking something that was untrue when given the opportunity to correct it. I don’t think we should give Christ a “free pass” on this one. There were some things that the disciples were not ready for at various points in their walk with Christ. But along the way, he continually unfolded his teaching until at the last, he gives them all they need. What a great time to explain that the OT conceptions of the kingdom were not what they seemed like. But Christ didn’t do it. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
    Surely you are not arguing that the kingdom was not initiated at the Incarnation? How many time did Christ tell them His kingdom was not of this world and they did not understand? “Jesus answered, ‘My kingdom is not of this world. If my kingdom were of this world, my servants would have been fighting, that I might not be delivered over to the Jews. But my kingdom is not from the world.’" John 18:36 (ESV)

    Matthew 16:19 (ESV) I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven."

    Luke 17:21 (ESV) nor will they say, 'Look, here it is!' or 'There!' for behold, the kingdom of God is in the midst of you."
    And after Pentecost, the apostles never again sought or concerned themselves with an earthly kingdom.

    2 Cor. 5:16-17 (ESV) From now on, therefore, we regard no one according to the flesh. Even though we once regarded Christ according to the flesh, we regard him thus no longer. [17] Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.

    Hebrews 1:8 (ESV) But of the Son he says, "Your throne, O God, is forever and ever, the scepter of uprightness is the scepter of your kingdom.

    2 Peter 1:11 (ESV) For in this way there will be richly provided for you an entrance into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Again, what Jew with the OT would have understood this and where would they have understood it from? Where did the “holy prophets long ago” prophesy of the Paradise of the New Earth? Every prophet without exception prophesies of a restored kingdom, not the new heaven and the new earth, something that the Jews never had and therefore could not be restored. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
    You again interpret the NT by the OT, something you claim not to do. The prophets may or may not have understood what they were prophesying, but the restored kingdom is clearly explained in the NT to be Paradise Regained. It is not the kingdom of the Jews, but the Kingdom of God.
    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>I do not argue with this point. It doesn’t help your case because no dispensationalist will argue with this. Paul is here talking about the church, those who are in Christ. He does speak of two groups becoming one in the body. But he does not here discuss the transfer of promises from the nation where Jew and Gentile meant everything to a church where Jew and Gentile are not divided. You keep bringing up this point of “Jew and Gentile being one in the church” as if I am going to disagree with you about it. I am not now; I never will. The Jew and Gentile are one in the church. That however does not preclude the fulfillment of God’s promises to the people with whom they were made. What place does the remnant play in your theology? It seems to have none. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
    I don’t know how much more plainly to explain this; The remnant of Israel is grafted back in to the body of believers, i.e., the Church, the Redeemed of God. Your dispensational hermeneutic is incapable of accepting this.

    Romans 11:1-5 (ESV) I ask, then, has God rejected his people? By no means! For I myself am an Israelite, a descendant of Abraham, a member of the tribe of Benjamin. [2] God has not rejected his people whom he foreknew. Do you not know what the Scripture says of Elijah, how he appeals to God against Israel? [3] "Lord, they have killed your prophets, they have demolished your altars, and I alone am left, and they seek my life." [4] But what is God's reply to him? "I have kept for myself seven thousand men who have not bowed the knee to Baal." [5] So too at the present time there is a remnant, chosen by grace.

    God has not rejected his people. Who are they? The foreknown – i.e., the elect, the remnant out of ethnic Israel. There is a remnant of Jews chosen by grace. What becomes of them?

    Romans 11:7 (ESV) What then? Israel failed to obtain what it was seeking. The elect obtained it, but the rest were hardened

    Israel failed to obtain what it was seeking. What were they seeking? An ethnic Jewish kingdom on the earth. this did not happen and never would/ “My kingdom is not of this world. If my kingdom were of this world, my servants would have been fighting, that I might not be delivered over to the Jews. But my kingdom is not from the world.” John 18:36 (ESV) The elect obtained the kingdom of Christ; the rest did not.

    Romans 11:11 (ESV) So I ask, did they stumble in order that they might fall? By no means! Rather through their trespass salvation has come to the Gentiles, so as to make Israel jealous.

    What was Israel to be made jealous for, an earthly kingdom the Gentiles never possessed? No! The kingdom of Christ, of which the Gentile elect received. The elect of Israel were to be made jealous to enter the kingdom of Christ.

    Romans 11:19-20 (ESV) Then you will say, "Branches were broken off so that I might be grafted in." [20] That is true. They were broken off because of their unbelief, but you stand fast through faith. So do not become proud, but stand in awe.

    What were the Gentiles grafted into:Judaism? That was done away with by grace. “for in Christ Jesus you are all sons of God, through faith. [27] For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ. [28] There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. [29] And if you are Christ's, then you are Abraham's offspring, heirs according to promise.” Galatians 3:26-29 (ESV)

    There is no distinction between Jew and Greek, between Israel and Gentiles. All believers are in the Church, the one people of God. There is no return to an earthly Jewish kingdom.

    Romans 11:22-27 (ESV) Note then the kindness and the severity of God: severity toward those who have fallen, but God's kindness to you, provided you continue in his kindness. Otherwise you too will be cut off. [23] And even they, if they do not continue in their unbelief, will be grafted in, for God has the power to graft them in again. [24] For if you were cut from what is by nature a wild olive tree, and grafted, contrary to nature, into a cultivated olive tree, how much more will these, the natural branches, be grafted back into their own olive tree.
    [25] Lest you be wise in your own conceits, I want you to understand this mystery, brothers: a partial hardening has come upon Israel, until the fullness of the Gentiles has come in. [26] And in this way all Israel will be saved, as it is written,
    "The Deliverer will come from Zion,
    he will banish ungodliness from Jacob";
    [27] "and this will be my covenant with them
    when I take away their sins."


    Notice that the remnant will be grafted back in to where the Gentile believers are; the kingdom of Christ. There is no mention of a Jewish earthly kingdom, only the combined kingdom of God in Christ Jesus. All believers will be one and inherit the same promises made to Israel in the OT. “And in this way all Israel will be saved”: the elect out of Israel and the elect out of the Gentiles.

    Notice Paul quoted the fulfillment of Isa 59:20: “A Redeemer will come to Zion, And to those who turn from transgression in Jacob,” declares the LORD. The Apostle applies the promises to Jacob directly to the Redeemed, Spiritual Israel, which in your view, nullifies the promises to ethnic Israel.

    Gal 6.15 “For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision avails anything, but a new creation. 16 And as many as walk according to this rule, peace and mercy be upon them, and upon the Israel of God.”

    [ December 21, 2001: Message edited by: Chris Temple ]
     
  8. Pastor Larry

    Pastor Larry <b>Moderator</b>
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    Wow … a long one. We should cut these down.

    As for the perspicuity of the OT, they did not have to understand the implications or the final significance of it. That does not make it meaningless. The words say what they do. The OT does have plenty of examples and instructions. But that is a far cry from redefining what the text says.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR> … Christ came to tell them that the Kingdom of God was not material, but spiritual.[/quote

    Where was this revelation?? I have never seen it.

     
  9. Chris Temple

    Chris Temple New Member

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    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>One of the frustrating things here is that you and I are so vastly different on where we are coming from. It seems that much of the argumentation and material on dispensationalism has been completely overlooked by you. It does not seem that you have rejected dispensationalism because you have studied it and examined it but rather because you don’t want to admit its possibility. I embraced it because it is the only position that seems to do justice to the text. Covenant theology is a philosophical construct. IMHO, it cannot now, nor has it ever been able to, withstand the weight of substantive historical grammatical interpretation. Perhaps you will be the first to show me that it can. Dispensationalism hangs its hat on the peg of exegesis, letting the text say what it does. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
    PL:

    Reading your latest reply really makes me chuckle :D (no offense). No one is more entrenched in a position that the dispensationalist! Your argument goes that the covenant believer cannot be right, because the dispensationalist is the one who interprets Scripture correctly! The dispensational hermeneutic is a priori accounted as the correct hermeneutic, even though 1830 years of Christianity has interpreted Scripture my way and not yours.

    Although I agree that “One of the frustrating things here is that you and I are so vastly different on where we are coming from”, it is not true that “It seems that much of the argumentation and material on dispensationalism has been completely overlooked by you.” Rather, I came out of dispensationalism into my present belief. The same Scripture studies which revealed to me the truths of Divine Grace and Calvinism, also revealed that dispensational theology is bankrupt. Dispensationalism isn’t true simply because you say it is.

    I have already explained the canonical NT hermeneutic and why Jer 31 and Zech 12-14 speak of fulfillment in the church, yet you want a verse-by-verse exegesis of whole chapters when you won’t even deal with Gal 3:6-8; 6:15,16; and Romans 9:6-8. God’s word says “There is neither Jew nor Greek”, but you say there is a difference; God’s word says “So then those who are of faith are blessed with believing Abraham”, but you say those who are of faith are blessed apart from believing Abraham; and God’s word says “That is, those who are the children of the flesh, these are not the children of God; but the children of the promise are counted as the seed”, but you say those who are the children of the flesh, are the children of God.

    As far as reading, I suggest to you Hoekema, Venema (especially), Robertson, Pink, Alexander, Cox, DeMar, Gerstner, Spurgeon, J.P. Boyce, J.L. Dagg, B.H. Carroll, Calvin, Luther, and ..well.. anyone before 1830. J

    Its probably good to stop here. I don’t see any progress being made. I’ll leave you the last word.

    [ December 22, 2001: Message edited by: Chris Temple ]
     
  10. Pastor Larry

    Pastor Larry <b>Moderator</b>
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    It is interesting Chris that I asked several explicit questions which you will not deal with. Why? Do they hit too close to home? Do they risk changing your system that you are working hard to defend? You cannot simply ignore the things that are inconvenient for you. I have not done so. I have answered every question you have asked. I have dealt with virtually every significant passage (except when you started prooftexting). Why will you not do the same?

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>No one is more entrenched in a position that the dispensationalist! Your argument goes that the covenant believer cannot be right, because the dispensationalist is the one who interprets Scripture correctly! The dispensational hermeneutic is a priori accounted as the correct hermeneutic, even though 1830 years of Christianity has interpreted Scripture my way and not yours.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Actually the dispensational hermeneutic is right because it is the only one that anyone uses to communicate. You use my hermeneutic every day. You expect people to use it when they read what you write or listen to what you say. I can assure you that if you used your hermeneutic on my posts, you would never understand with any reasonable certainty what I am saying. You cannot communicate very well with your hermeneutic.

    The issue between CT and DT is an issue of interpretation and CT cannot be right, IMHO, because they use a faulty hermeneutic. You cannot arrive at a right conclusion if you ignore or redefine what the text says. Canonical hermeneutics has some validity, but not as you and its proponents have suggested. It removes meaning from texts and makes Scripture useless. Consider this, if the NT tells us what the OT really means, what is going to tell us what the NT really means? Where does it end? The answer is "Nowhere."

    As for the time frame, I think you are wrong. Many people before have interpreted Scripture as dispensationalists do. If you read Ryrie and Showers, you would see the documentation. I still suspect you have not read much of dispensationalism. My suspicion is that you got your dispensationalism from a source that was Arminian and therefore you rejected dispensationalism with Arminianism. It is a plain misrepresentation to say that no one before 1830 had this hermeneutic. For those who are interested, read Ryrie, Dispensationalism, and Showers, There Really Is A Difference.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>The same Scripture studies which revealed to me the truths of Divine Grace and Calvinism, also revealed that dispensational theology is bankrupt. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Funny how it was exactly opposite for me. You became a Calvinist because of what the Scriptures say. So did I. But I consistently applied the same hermeneutic and became a dispensationalist. Dispensationalism is not true because I say it is. You know that I don't think that. I think it is true because of the text.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>I have already explained the canonical NT hermeneutic and why Jer 31 and Zech 12-14 speak of fulfillment in the church, yet you want a verse-by-verse exegesis of whole chapters when you won’t even deal with Gal 3:6-8; 6:15,16; and Romans 9:6-8.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Where did you deal with these passages? You blew off Jer 31 with a quote from Heb 8 which didn't help and you cited Matthew Henry in support of Zech 12-14. You cite a bunch of people about canonical context but you don't deal with the passages. I don't want a verse by verse exegesis of Zech 12-14. I did ask for a verse by verse explanation of how you deny the words of Jer 31:31-40. Why are you so frightened to do that?

    I have dealt with every passage you have listed. Here we go again:

    Gal 3:6-8 -- What is that point? I don't disagree with those verses. How do you think I would? They do not assert any replacement theology though. Look at v. 17: the Law (and disobedience to it) cannot annul the promise. Therefore, the people with whom the promise was made have not been disannuled from the covenant of promise. This is exactly what Jer 31 says.

    Gal 6:15-16 -- I dealt with these several posts ago with quotes from Bruce and Burton, both showing that you are wrong. The "Israel of God" is distinct from "Those who walk by this rule."

    Rom 9:6-8 -- I don't see the problem here either. Not all Israelites are redeemed. Are you disagreeing with that?

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>God’s word says “There is neither Jew nor Greek”, but you say there is a difference;<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    In the church, there is no difference. In Rom 9-11, there is clearly a difference. I pointed out the absurdity of saying that Israel is the church. It makes the passage incoherent.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>God’s word says “So then those who are of faith are blessed with believing Abraham”, but you say those who are of faith are blessed apart from believing Abraham;<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Never said this. You made it up.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR> and God’s word says “That is, those who are the children of the flesh, these are not the children of God; but the children of the promise are counted as the seed”, but you say those who are the children of the flesh, are the children of God.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Here you have conflated two or three things to try to make a dramatic point; however you have misrepresented what I said. In the national ethnic Israel, there are believers and unbelievers. In the end times, there will be a remnant, as testified to by a kajillion passages in the OT and confirmed both in Rom and Revelation. I also said that the promise must be fulfilled with those to whom it is given. The children of the promise are counted as the seed and there will be a redeemed remnant in fulfillment of Zech 12-14. If you read it, you will see what I am saying. I asked you, Can God take your salvation and give it to someone else while leaving you out of it? Of course not. But you suggest he did just that with Israel.

    Here again, you fail to realize the context of the verses you are quoting. Those verses are about the church, not about OT Israel. You talk about canonical context but in so doing you are ignoring literary and historical context. You cannot do this and arrive at a consistent meaning. You ended having to twist and distort clear promises in favor of obscure ones.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>As far as reading, I suggest to you Hoekema, Venema (especially), Robertson, Pink, Alexander, Cox, DeMar, Gerstner, Spurgeon, J.P. Boyce, J.L. Dagg, B.H. Carroll, Calvin, Luther, and ..well.. anyone before 1830.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    I have read most of these, probably as much as you have. Unless you buy the a prioris that cannot be confirmed from Scripture, the argument falls on its face. It is a great little system. It is just not derived from exegesis.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>[qbIts probably good to stop here. I don’t see any progress being made. I’ll leave you the last word.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>[/qb]

    Once again, we end this discussion without Chris doing any exegesis of the relevant passages. It is disappointing. I think you have some serious problems that you are just wishing away. The text says what it does. You cannot ignore that. Until you work through Jeremiah 31 as Jeremiah wrote it, you will not realize what I am saying.

    I do not mean to appear arrogant here. I really am not. I am concerned for the implications of your position with reference to the character of God, and the fulfillment of his promises.

    [ December 22, 2001: Message edited by: Pastor Larry ]
     
  11. Chris Temple

    Chris Temple New Member

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    Pastor Larry:

    Forgive me for responding again, but I felt it necessary.

    When all is said and done, it still comes down to the dispensational hermeneutic being entrenched in the OT superceding the NT, despite the fact that no NT writer interprets the OT in the dispensational manner. We simply cannot ignore the New Testament context when interpreting Scripture. If there was only one instance of the NT interpreting an OT “literal promise” figuratively, it blows the dispensational literal hermeneutic out of the water. Of course, there are many more than one instance. For example, the prophecy of the coming of Elijah.

    Matt 17 tells us:“10 And His disciples asked Him, “Why then do the scribes say that Elijah must come first?” 11 And He answered and said, “Elijah is coming and will restore all things; 12 but I say to you that Elijah already came, and they did not recognize him, but did to him whatever they wished. So also the Son of Man is going to suffer at their hands.” 13 Then the disciples understood that He had spoken to them about John the Baptist.”

    Mal 4:5-6 says “5 Behold, I am going to send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and terrible day of the LORD. 6 “He will restore the hearts of the fathers to their children and the hearts of the children to their fathers, so that I will not come and smite the land with a curse.” Dispensationalists would have it necessary that Elijah come literally before the day of the Lord. Yet Jesus tells us in Matt 17 that “Elijah already came” and Matthew tells us “He had spoken to them about John the Baptist”.

    Similarly, in Acts 15, James quotes Amos’ prophecy fulfilled about rebuilding the tabernacle of David in the then present dispensation when the gospel would go out to and include the Gentiles in salvation:

    15 “With this the words of the Prophets agree, just as it is written,
    16 ‘AFTER THESE THINGS I will return,
    AND I WILL REBUILD THE TABERNACLE OF DAVID WHICH HAS FALLEN,
    AND I WILL REBUILD ITS RUINS,
    AND I WILL RESTORE IT,
    17 SO THAT THE REST OF MANKIND MAY SEEK THE LORD,
    AND ALL THE GENTILES WHO ARE CALLED BY MY NAME,’
    18 SAYS THE LORD, WHO MAKES THESE THINGS KNOWN FROM LONG AGO.
    19 “Therefore it is my judgment that we do not trouble those who are turning to God from among the Gentiles"

    The dispensationalist would have it that the tabernacle of David must be physically restored for it to be fulfilled literally, over and against the inspired NT apostle. So much for dispensational literalism.

    I assure you I am not becoming a “Braswellian”, but Joseph Braswell articulates it very well:

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR> literalism cannot be given a criteriological status as the way we are to interpret texts. We must rather pay attention to the way the NT treats OT texts, learning our paradigms of interpretation from canonical examples of New-Covenantal interpretation. We must read the OT bearing in mind that what God promised to the patriarchs God has fulfilled in his raising up Jesus ( Ac. 13:32b-33a) and that all the promises of God are affirmed as fulfilled in Christ ( 2 Cor. 1:20 ). We must look at the time inaugurated by the coming of Christ as the last days and time of eschatological fulfillment -- the antitypical substance of which the Old Covenant was but the typological shadow. Recognizing this, we will understand, for example, that Isaiah 2:2-4 does not refer to fleshly Israel's future glory in a coming millennial age (a judeocentric reading), but to the result of Pentecost. We will not look to another New Covenant (to be made in the future with fleshly Israel and Judah) as the fulfillment of Jeremiah's prophecy, but will take literally what Hebrews tells us, even as we will accept at face value what Peter said at Pentecost regarding the prophecy of Joel 2. We will understand OT eschatological expectation as that which the NT gospel announces as fulfilled. We will not allow an abstract (self-contained, stand-alone) OT theology -- an Old-Covenantal theology -- to determine the shape of NT theology and Biblical theology as a whole, but we will use NT theology as a key to interpreting the OT and read the OT as a part of a whole Biblical Theology that is the canonical theology of the New Covenant, seeking to understand how the end was declared from the beginning and how the NT develops OT themes. Such is the reading of faith. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Dispensationalism has failed to understand this basic requirement for Christian hermeneutics, and all manner of curious interpretation has followed. This problem can be avoided, however, if we adhere to the canonical context. The proper method of interpreting Scripture must be the method employed by Scripture itself. Since the NT does not interpret the OT prophecy in the same manner that dispensationalism demands, there is no legitimate reason to conform to its hermeneutical standard.

    [ December 23, 2001: Message edited by: Chris Temple ]
     
  12. Sam Hughey

    Sam Hughey New Member

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    Pastor Larry,

    Please excuse me for entering into this discussion at such a late date, however, after reading over some of the comments I would like to add something to this discussion concerning the following:

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Pastor Larry: "I dont' know if you are referring to the book by Gerstner (Wrongly Dividing the Word of Truth), Mathison (Dispensationalism: Rightly Dividing the People of God), or Kimbrough (I can't remember the name but I believe it is something similar to these). All of these books were very similar in their approach in that they misrepresented Dispensationalism, often either outright or by appealing to the "fringe lunatics." Unfortunately, they have been read by many and believed to be accurate representations".<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
    I would first like to say that I spent the first 9 years of my Christian life as a staunch Dispensationalist. I did not then and do not now consider myself to have been on the "fringe lunatic" with my understanding of Dispensationalism. I was one of many tens of thousands Fundamental Baptists who believed the same things concerning Dispensationalism.

    I have also read Gerstner's, " Wrongly Dividing the Word of Truth" and Mathison's "Dispensationalism: Rightly Dividing the People of God" and found them to be wholly accurate with their view of Dispensationalism.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Pastor Larry: "Of course, I am a committed dispensationalist because I cannot see any other way to interpret Scripture consistently".<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
    I'm not being disrespectful, but perhaps the problem is, as you stated, you "cannot" see anything other than Dispensationalism. There is a difference between what one does not see and what one cannot or will not see. For instance, your following statement:

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Pastor Larry: I would hardly consider the 1000 year reign of Christ on earth "pointless" since it is the fulfillment of OT prophecy. If it does not happen, then there are OT prophecies that never get fulfilled.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
    I would also not consider it "pointless" since our Lord placed it inside His Holy Word. However, what OT prophecy is our Lord referring to when He related the 1000 years to a literal reign on the earth precisely as Dispensationalism claims?

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Pastor Larry: That Satan is bound and then freed at the end of it is really a matter of biblical revelation.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
    Then why do Christians have "different" Biblical revelations. Since there is only "one" Bible, authored by "one" God and inspired by "one" Holy Spirit and revealed to Christ's "one" body, I hardly think there could be more than "one" revealed interpretation.

    Scripture is clear only to the point that our Lord says Satan (the strongman) was bound and his house (possessions) were taken from him (Matthew 12:29).

    Biblically revealed truth clearly states that Satan has already been bound by Christ Himself in the 1st Century. To force this into some unknown future simply because it fits into a pre-supposed belief system is not the result of "Biblically revealed" truth.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Pastor Larry: "There is no legitimate way to shoehorn that into current times. That the early church believed that they were living in the end times is certainly true. The whole church age has been living in the end times. I do not see that as a problem at all. In fact, I think it strenghthens the case for dispensational premillennialism".<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
    I agree there is no way to shorten this period of time, however, that is precisely what Dispensationalism does by forcing it to fit into a specific and unknown future time and by refusing to accept that Christ Himself began this about 2000 years ago.

    The problem Dispensationalism has with the term "end times" is that it can never clearly define just what "end times" really is. Dispensationalism simply elongates "a" period of time so far off into the future that the word "end" scarcely has any discernable definition at all. If the text is left alone to relay its message to those whom it was intended, it can only refer to the "end times" of the OT Levitical system of sacrifices and temple worship, which truly came to an end in the 1st Century. The writer of Hebrews also refers to "these" last days (not "those" in some unknown future) when referencing those Jews who were still trusting in their OT system of sacrifices for sin. John did not tell the 1st Century Christians about some unknown future time to them in 1 John 2:18. He clearly and distinctly stated that in the 1st Century, it "was" the last times (days) for them. This is precisely what the Bible reveals and not something that is taught to be unknown with no distinct definition, which is not Biblical revelation.

    There is absolutely nothing in the Bible that reveals the whole church age to be living in the end times. That is purely an invention of Dispensationalism and I would challenge anyone to show clear and distinct Biblical revelation, not Dispensationalism, where any writer of the NT clearly states that the unknown time frame of the church age is the last days referred to by the NT writers.

    Please, Pastor Larry, do not take my statements in any way other than for the sake of discussion for I truly do not intend them to be taken any other way.

    Sam Hughey [​IMG]

    [ December 23, 2001: Message edited by: Sam Hughey ]
     
  13. Sam Hughey

    Sam Hughey New Member

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    Bob,

    You stated:
    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Full-blown Preterism? Okay, I'll bite. I disagree and would be happy to engage in discussion.
    (Okay - here's the teacher in me. Many of you may not know that there are Four Views of Revelation. The person then reads each verse and understands it from one of these perspectives:

    Preterist - In Revelation, everything was fulfilled in AD30-100 or at least during the Roman Empire
    Historical - Revelation is a panorama of church history from the Apostles until the consummation of the world
    Idealist - Revelation does not represent actual events; it's a symbolic depiction of the battle between right and wrong, good and evil
    Futurist - Revelation, beginning with chapter 4, describes literal future events acceompanying the end of the age.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Actually, there is a another view:

    My View - Whatever I don't like about the others, my view prevails, whatever it is at the moment.

    Seriously, your Preterist description is incorrect. You have stated the hyper-Preterist position, sometimes called full-Preterism. The partial-Preterist position does not conclude "all" to have been accomplished leading up to and including the events of 70 AD.

    Sam Hughey
     
  14. Dr. Bob

    Dr. Bob Administrator
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    Man, I don't want to accuse ANYONE of being hyper-anything! Take a minute and type what a "partial preterist is and we will have 5 views for interpreting prophecy!
     
  15. Chris Temple

    Chris Temple New Member

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    Sam -

    Thanks. Your comments are well appreciated!
     
  16. Pastor Larry

    Pastor Larry <b>Moderator</b>
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    Sam,

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>I would first like to say that I spent the first 9 years of my Christian life as a staunch Dispensationalist.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Take heart, because you will be again one day [​IMG]

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>I have also read Gerstner's, " Wrongly Dividing the Word of Truth" and Mathison's "Dispensationalism: Rightly Dividing the People of God" and found them to be wholly accurate with their view of Dispensationalism. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    I don’t know what kind of dispensationalist you were or what your level of understanding was, but I can assure you that these books are not accurate. I could go through page after page and refute what they say, show where they misrepresent, or where they use a fringe element to define DT. Trust me on this one: I am a staunch dispensationalist (as you might have figured) and I completely reject what these men say.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Pastor Larry: "Of course, I am a committed dispensationalist because I cannot see any other way to interpret Scripture consistently". SH: I'm not being disrespectful, but perhaps the problem is, as you stated, you "cannot" see anything other than Dispensationalism. There is a difference between what one does not see and what one cannot or will not see.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Notice how you conveniently change what I said to make your point. (This is a part of Gerstner’s, Mathison’s, and Kimbrough’s method.). I did not say I cannot see anything other than dispensationalism. I said that I cannot see any other way to intepret Scripture consistently. Your position does not use normal methods of communication. Contrary to some people’s (loudly stated) assertions, the NT authors did not misuse Scripture and did not practice this creative hermeneutic that your position demands. Words mean things and are used to communicate things. Of necessity, they require a single meaning governed by authorial intent with a common understanding by the interpreter. I interpret your words through this method and your interpret my words through this method. In other words you use my hermeneutic on every but Scripture. When it comes to Scripture, you use my hermeneutic in some places and not in others. But you have no definable way to decide where you use it and where you don’t. For instance, you believe the literal interpretation of the OT prophecies of Christ; you reject the literal interpretation of the Kingdom. Why? Why do you practice a different hermeneutic on these things? I find that inconsistent.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>However, what OT prophecy is our Lord referring to when He related the 1000 years to a literal reign on the earth precisely as Dispensationalism claims? <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    First, our Lord did not talk of 1000 years; John did. Second when Christ talked of the kingdom, he was speaking of the OT prophecies of the Kingdom. It took no explanation to the first century Jews because they understood it. The only people who need it explained are people who do not accept the OT for what it says.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Then why do Christians have "different" Biblical revelations. Since there is only "one" Bible, authored by "one" God and inspired by "one" Holy Spirit and revealed to Christ's "one" body, I hardly think there could be more than "one" revealed interpretation. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Because not all practice consistent interpretation. I assert that you cannot simply pick and choose your hermeneutical method depending on how you like the outcome of it. BTW, interpretations are not revealed; they are derived from the text.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Scriptue is clear only to the point that our Lord says Satan (the strongman) was bound and his house (possessions) were taken from him (Matthew 12:29). <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Did you read Matthew 12? 1) It is in the context of the Kingdom; 2) It does not say that the strongman was bound. It says that for the kingdom to come, he must be bound. 3) The Jews rejected Christ and therefore committed the unpardonable sin, thus removing from them the very kingdom the strongman must be bound for. Again, exegesis of the passage (rather than prooftexting) would show that the verse does not contain your needed assertion.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Biblically revealed truth clearly states that Satan has already been bound by Christ Himself in the 1st Century. To force this into some unknown future simply because it fits into a pre-supposed belief system is not the result of "Biblically revealed" truth. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Where does it say this?? And if he has been bound, then how does he disguise himself as an angel of light (2 Cor 11:14)?

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Pastor Larry: "There is no legitimate way to shoehorn that into current times. That the early church believed that they were living in the end times is certainly true. The whole church age has been living in the end times. I do not see that as a problem at all. In fact, I think it strenghthens the case for dispensational premillennialism". SH: I agree there is no way to shorten this period of time, however, that is precisely what Dispensationalism does by forcing it to fit into a specific and unknown future time and by refusing to accept that Christ Himself began this about 2000 years ago. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    I left my quote here to show that once again you have attributed something to me that I did not say. I did not say anything about shortening the period of time. I have not forced anything into a specific and unknown period of time. Rev 20 talks of one thousand years. John is the one who gave a time frame. Were it not for his writing, we would not know that. Christ did not begin this 2000 years ago, at least not according to any Scripture you have shown. Please show the Scripture where Christ began this. And if he began it, why did the disciples ask when it was coming (Acts 1:5 – Why didn’t they recognize it)? And if He began it, why didn’t he just tell the disciples that in Acts 1:6? And if he began it, why doesn’t it match what the OT prophecies talk about? Reading McClain will explain this in further detail concerning the six aspects of the kingdom prophesied about in the OT (I think they are spiritual, moral, ecclesiastical, political, social, and one I can’t remember. Since I am not at home I can’t look it up. Sorry).

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>The problem Dispensationalism has with the term "end times" is that it can never clearly define just what "end times" really is.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    I would take this as a sign of our commitment to Scripture. Since Scripture does not define just what the “end times” really is, we will leave it at that (at least most of us will). The End times or last days of Scripture reference a generally described state of affairs. The time itself is not specified.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR> If the text is left alone to relay its message to those whom it was intended, it can only refer to the "end times" of the OT Levitical system of sacrifices and temple worship, which truly came to an end in the 1st Century. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    2 Tim 3:1 has nothing to do with the end of the OT levitical system. Nor does 2 Peter 3. In fact, I cannot think of any places where the end times or discussed with reference to the Levitical system. Perhaps there are some; let me know what you are thinking of. Furthermore, this brings another interesting point. Here, you want the “text left alone to relay its message to those whom it was intended.” Yet when I argue that the OT should be treated that way, you deny it. Why are you inconsistent on this point?

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>John did not tell the 1st Century Christians about some unknown future time to them in 1 John 2:18. He clearly and distinctly stated that in the 1st Century, it "was" the last times (days) for them. This is precisely what the Bible reveals and not something that is taught to be unknown with no distinct definition, which is not Biblical revelation. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    And you are denying that the church is living in the end times? That is exactly what John was saying. The end times are characterized by Antichrist. And even now many antichrists are here as characterized by their deficient belief concerning the person of Christ. If there was ever evidence that we are living in the last times, it is this teaching.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>There is absolutely nothing in the Bible that reveals the whole church age to be living in the end times. That is purely an invention of Dispensationalism and I would challenge anyone to show clear and distinct Biblical revelation, not Dispensationalism, where any writer of the NT clearly states that the unknown time frame of the church age is the last days referred to by the NT writers. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Where is it revealed that we are not living in the last times? Every thing that the NT says about the issue describes the world in which we now live. Why don’t you (to borrow from your words slightly modified) show clear and distinct Biblical revelation, not [CT], where any writer of the NT clearly states that the unknown time frame of the church age is [not] the last days referred to by the NT writers? In other words, force yourself to answer the question from Scripture, not from your presuppositions.

    I think the exegesis of the passages you mention preclude the very things you are suggesting. If time and space permitted, I think a full exegesis would bear that out. You can do that on your own. However, I doubt that you will stray far enough from your presuppositions to interact with the text itself.

    As with you, I hope you understand these comments in the manner in which they were intended.
     
  17. Sam Hughey

    Sam Hughey New Member

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    Bob,


    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Dr. Bob Griffin:
    Man, I don't want to accuse ANYONE of being hyper-anything! Take a minute and type what a "partial preterist is and we will have 5 views for interpreting prophecy!<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Actually, I was only joking with the MY VIEW. However, partial-preterism is differentiated from hyper-preterism in that it (partial-preterism) does not conclude all prophecy to have been completed in the 1st Century but it does regard some events to have a 1st Century fulfillment such as the destruction of Jerusalem and a return in judgement by our Lord on the Jews that led up to and included the destruction of Jerusalem. Partial-Preterism does not believe the 2nd coming occured in the 1st Century or that we are in the eternal state.

    Sorry, I didn't intend to seem so forceful but I have heard too many Christians develop incorrect views simply because of a misunderstood view.

    Sam Hughey [​IMG]
     
  18. Sam Hughey

    Sam Hughey New Member

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    Pastor Larry,

    I first want to say that I am not in the habit of making such lengthy responses. They are very time consuming (though important) and some discussion forums are not designed to allow such a lengthy post. If all of this doesn’t get posted, I will take the remainder and make a part 2 post. However, I would like to keep it all together.

    Again, please receive this response with the spirit in which I prepared it. I intend no disrespect, even when my words are a bit forceful. Textual discussions can lead to misunderstandings since they restricted to nothing but text. [​IMG]

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Pastor Larry: I don’t know what kind of dispensationalist you were or what your level of understanding was, but I can assure you that these books are not accurate. I could go through page after page and refute what they say, show where they misrepresent, or where they use a fringe element to define DT. Trust me on this one: I am a staunch dispensationalist (as you might have figured) and I completely reject what these men say.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>I would have expected some form of representation to support your charge. Perhaps you could present just one significant example of how Gerstner’s book misrepresents what DT teaches?

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Pastor Larry: "Of course, I am a committed dispensationalist because I cannot see any other way to interpret Scripture consistently".

    SH: I'm not being disrespectful, but perhaps the problem is, as you stated, you "cannot" see anything other than Dispensationalism. There is a difference between what one does not see and what one cannot or will not see.

    Pastor Larry: Notice how you conveniently change what I said to make your point. (This is a part of Gerstner’s, Mathison’s, and Kimbrough’s method.). I did not say I cannot see anything other than dispensationalism. I said that I cannot see any other way to intepret Scripture consistently. Your position does not use normal methods of communication. Contrary to some people’s (loudly stated) assertions, the NT authors did not misuse Scripture and did not practice this creative hermeneutic that your position demands. Words mean things and are used to communicate things. Of necessity, they require a single meaning governed by authorial intent with a common understanding by the interpreter. I interpret your words through this method and your interpret my words through this method. In other words you use my hermeneutic on every but Scripture. When it comes to Scripture, you use my hermeneutic in some places and not in others. But you have no definable way to decide where you use it and where you don’t. For instance, you believe the literal interpretation of the OT prophecies of Christ; you reject the literal interpretation of the Kingdom. Why? Why do you practice a different hermeneutic on these things? I find that inconsistent.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>And what did I change? I used your own words in the quote where you stated “I cannot see any other way to interpret Scripture consistently”. Is that not what you wrote? I merely stated that there is a difference between what a person cannot see and what one does not see because they will not see. You will not see anything other than DT, therefore, you cannot see anything other than DT. Why is that a problem? And again, I changed (conveniently?) nothing whatsoever you wrote. Please don’t read into my statements something that is not there. I will also state that “I” cannot see DT to be honest with scripture, therefore, I will not see what I know I cannot see to be true. This statement is based on my years of knowing DT first-hand and its opposition.

    Also, you wrote; “Your position does not use normal methods of communication. Contrary to some people’s (loudly stated) assertions, the NT authors did not misuse Scripture and did not practice this creative hermeneutic that your position demands. I’m sorry for using what you think is “abnormal communication”. I merely quoted what you wrote, asked for an explanation (perhaps indirectly by implication), corrected where I believe DT to be in error and stated what DT teaches on a particular issue. Perhaps you can adivse me as to how that is “abnormal communication”. Now, perhaps you don’t like the way in which I made my statements but that hardly proves them to be “abnormal”. I would also think that when one makes a claim against another Christian to be teaching falsely (Gerstner’s book), that Christian should assume full personal accountability to prove his claim. That is what the writers of the NT taught us, is it not? However, your only response to me asking what was misrepresented was, “trust me”!

    Pastor Larry, you stated; “For instance, you believe the literal interpretation of the OT prophecies of Christ; you reject the literal interpretation of the Kingdom. Why? Why do you practice a different hermeneutic on these things? I find that inconsistent.And just where did I make the statement that I don’t believe in a literal kingdom? I find that nowhere in my response to you. My only reference to the kingdom was “However, what OT prophecy is our Lord referring to when He related the 1000 years to a literal reign on the earth precisely as Dispensationalism claims?” Now, is this an example of “normal communication”, to assume I meant something other than what I clearly wrote? Perhaps you assumed this as a result of what I wrote but what you assume I believe does not prove what I actually do believe. I most definitely believe in a literal kingdom of God and why wouldn’t I since that is precisely what the Bible states. However, I reject the Dispensational view of a (literal) earthly kingdom limited to a 1000 year reign of Christ. And when considering the (alleged) inconsistency of literal interpretation, are you saying that DT consistently interprets everything literally? You and I both know that DT does not literally interpret everything in scripture and neither does any other system of interpretation.

    By the way, words do not always have a single meaning, neither in the Bible nor in “normal communication”, unless one forces a word to have single meaning and that would void any sense of “authorial intent with a common understanding by the interpreter” since the interpreter alone would decide what the common understanding should be. The context of the entire (or part of) communication dictates the common understanding, not the interpreter. It is the interpreter’s responsibility to understand what the common understanding is based on what the writer intends through clear and unambiguous text without the aid of pre-suppositions or unfounded assumptions.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Sam: However, what OT prophecy is our Lord referring to when He related the 1000 years to a literal reign on the earth precisely as Dispensationalism claims?

    First, our Lord did not talk of 1000 years; John did. Second when Christ talked of the kingdom, he was speaking of the OT prophecies of the Kingdom. It took no explanation to the first century Jews because they understood it. The only people who need it explained are people who do not accept the OT for what it says.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>Forgive me Pastor Larry for it was my understanding that whatever the prophets and/or apostles wrote, they did so based solely on the divine authority of it being from God, not themselves. Whatever John wrote, he wrote as directed by God. However, your response did not answer my question and traveled far from it. When Christ spoke of the kingdom, He spoke of the one and only kingdom He has or does DT have more than one kingdom for Christ? If there is only one (the only kingdom the Bible teaches), then this presents a problem with DT. Since DT creates a division between the words “Israel” and “Church”, why then would Christ be preaching the same gospel of the kingdom of God to OT people and to NT people at the same time if they were not both in the same kingdom of God? Your attempt to defend DT with saying “The only people who need it explained are people who do not accept the OT for what it says” is not only insultuous but completely evades the concept of “normal communication”, not to mention failing to prove DT to be correct with its view of the kingdom and the 1000 year reign.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Sam: Scriptue is clear only to the point that our Lord says Satan (the strongman) was bound and his house (possessions) were taken from him (Matthew 12:29).

    Pastor Larry: Did you read Matthew 12? 1) It is in the context of the Kingdom; 2) It does not say that the strongman was bound. It says that for the kingdom to come, he must be bound. 3) The Jews rejected Christ and therefore committed the unpardonable sin, thus removing from them the very kingdom the strongman must be bound for. Again, exegesis of the passage (rather than prooftexting) would show that the verse does not contain your needed assertion.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>Now, unless I’m mistaken, Matthew 12:1-27 speaks of the pharisee’s attempt to trick Jesus with the law (their distortion of the law). The pharisees saw only the letter of the law while Christ corrected their error that the spirit of the law was crucial to understanding and obeying the letter of the law. Verses 28,29 refer to Jesus casting out demons by the Spirit of God which proves form Christ’s own lips that the kingdom has already come upon those people at that time. Now, perhaps you do not see that Christ is comparing the strongman with the Devil with respect to casting out demons in verse 22, thus freeing this person, and perhaps you do not see that Christ declares the kingdom of God to be present and within people at that time by His sovereign authority of commanding the Devil (or his demons) to vacate what Christ will own by His sovereignty. And perhaps you do not see that Christ relates verse 29 with verse 22 in that Christ first rids the house of the strongman (the Devil, demons) in order to take (possess) his property (the souls of men). If you do not want to agree with this interpretation, then I would surely like to hear how you interpret these verses.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Sam: Biblically revealed truth clearly states that Satan has already been bound by Christ Himself in the 1st Century. To force this into some unknown future simply because it fits into a pre-supposed belief system is not the result of "Biblically revealed" truth.

    Where does it say this?? And if he has been bound, then how does he disguise himself as an angel of light (2 Cor 11:14)?<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>I already answered “where” in my response above. I think the problem is that you do not see the relationship of binding with authority. If one forces the word “bound” to mean only one thing, then who decides what that “only one thing” means? Do you? Previously in this post you stated, “Words mean things and are used to communicate things. Of necessity, they require a single meaning governed by authorial intent with a common understanding by the interpreter.” First, if something is bound, does that of “necessity” mean a total cessation of movement and/or a complete inability to posses a particular quality or character in spite of being bound? Matthew 27:2 says that Jesus was bound. It also says He was led away. Simply because Jesus was bound didn’t mean He was incapable of movement. We also know that Jesus was still the Son of God and the Redeemer of man even though He was bound. A binding does not prove one to be incapable of possesing any other quality than just being bound. Satan has always been bound by God throughout the entire Bible. He was to appear before God to explain his movements, he was restricted (bound) to what he could do against Job and he was cast out of humans yet without losing mobility or character (angel of light). The common understanding is very clear. A binding does not “of necessity” prove immobility or a cessation of character.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Pastor Larry: "There is no legitimate way to shoehorn that into current times. That the early church believed that they were living in the end times is certainly true. The whole church age has been living in the end times. I do not see that as a problem at all. In fact, I think it strenghthens the case for dispensational premillennialism".

    SH: I agree there is no way to shorten this period of time, however, that is precisely what Dispensationalism does by forcing it to fit into a specific and unknown future time and by refusing to accept that Christ Himself began this about 2000 years ago.

    I left my quote here to show that once again you have attributed something to me that I did not say. I did not say anything about shortening the period of time.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>First of all Pastor Larry, I never attributed anything to you that you did not write. This is but another of your false assumptions about what you think I meant rather than just merely responding to precisely what was written.

    Secondly, you and I both know that DT teaches the millennial kingdom will be 1000 literal earth years. It is both the a-mil and the post-mil view that describes the kingdom as being an indeterminate amount of time, which is vastly far longer than only a literal 1000 years. So, my statement about shortening this time period was in reference to this comparison, which I thought you would have understood, unless you don’t know what either the a-mil or the post-mil positions teach. Please, stop quibbling over petty word games by accusing me of misrepresenting what you’ve written when I have clearly not done so.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Pastor Larry: I have not forced anything into a specific and unknown period of time. Rev 20 talks of one thousand years. John is the one who gave a time frame. Were it not for his writing, we would not know that. Christ did not begin this 2000 years ago, at least not according to any Scripture you have shown. Please show the Scripture where Christ began this.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>Let’s see, you believe the millennial kingdom of God will only be 1000 literal earth years, as taught by DT, or you don’t. Since you do not agree with me as seeing this to be figurative, I can only assume you see it as a literal 1000 earthly years. Considering you are a staunch Dispensationalist, I will assume, on the basis of this known fact that you most definitely force the millennial kingdom into a specific period of time known as 1000 literal earth years. Also, since DT has no idea when this literal reign is to begin (and I assume you don’t know either), you are most definitely saying the period of time when this will happen is unknown. Furthermore, nowhere in Rev. 20 did John give any time frame of a yet future and unknown commencement of the millennial kingdom as taught by DT. Here is what John actually states; “Then I saw an angel coming down from heaven, holding the key of the abyss and a great chain in his hand. And he laid hold of the dragon, the serpent of old, who is the devil and Satan, and bound him for a thousand years; and he threw him into the abyss, and shut it and sealed it over him, so that he would not deceive the nations any longer, until the thousand years were completed; after these things he must be released for a short time. Then I saw thrones, and they sat on them, and judgment was given to them. And I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded because of their testimony of Jesus and because of the word of God, and those who had not worshiped the beast or his image, and had not received the mark on their forehead and on their hand; and they came to life and reigned with Christ for a thousand years. The rest of the dead did not come to life until the thousand years were completed. This is the first resurrection. Blessed and holy is the one who has a part in the first resurrection; over these the second death has no power, but they will be priests of God and of Christ and will reign with Him for a thousand years” (Rev. 20:1-6).

    Where is the time frame Pastor Larry? A time frame has a definite beginning and a definite ending. If it doesn’t, then a frame of time is either hypothetical or metaphorical, but never literal, unless one is grossly inconsistent with how one views consistent literalism. I see no such specificity in what John wrote. However, if you see a definite time frame in these verses, please present them. Previously in this post you mentioned a “consistent literalism”. Let’s see what you truly believe about “consistent literalism”. Do you believe the key is a literal key? Do you believe the chain is a literal chain? Do you believe Christ can only reign a literal thousand years on earth and at no other time can He reign? Do you believe the term “1000” is always interpreted in a strict literal sense and can never have any other meaning? Do you believe the prison of which John wrote is a literal prison that can hold a supernatural being with literal physical chains? Do you believe the events in the Revelation were written in a precise chronological order?

    Let’s look at what John actually wrote and compare it with scripture elsewhere to get a better over-all view of what John was talking about rather than just assuming something to be true on the basis of an isolated and ambiguous statement.

    John relates the kingdom with believers being priests of God and of Christ. 1 Peter 2:5-9 states that believers are already priests. Jesus warns the people in Matthew 3:2;4:17 that the kingdom is at hand (near to them). Matthew 12:28 clearly states that the kingdom “has” (at that time) already come upon them. Jesus preached the gospel of the kingdom to the 1st century hearers in Matthew 4:23. Jesus said in Matthew 6:23 to seek the Father’s kingdom (now, how could they do that if it wouldn’t happen for thousands of years after their death?). Exodus 15:18 states the Lord shall reign forever and ever. Psalms 146:10 declares that “the Lord will reign forever, Thy God, O Zion, to ‘ALL’ generations. Praise the Lord”. Romans 5:17 states; “…those who receive the abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness will reign in life through the One, Jesus Christ

    Now, perhaps DT rejects these clear and unambiguous verses in exchange for something that is unclear and ambiguous but I will not. Since Christ Himself said the kingdom has already come to men 2000 years ago, that is what I will believe and interpret literally for I have no reason to interpret it otherwise. And since scripture declares that believers were already made priests in the kingdom of God 2000 years ago, that is also what I will believe since I also have no reason to believe otherwise. And since we are already priests, already in the kingdom of God, then we must surely be reiging with Christ and will forever since our Lord Himself clearly stated that He is already reigning forever and ever and by the fact that we are in Christ as His priests we are already reigning with Christ as those who have already received the abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness.


    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Pastor Larry: And if he began it, why did the disciples ask when it was coming (Acts 1:5 – Why didn’t they recognize it)? And if He began it, why didn’t he just tell the disciples that in Acts 1:6? And if he began it, why doesn’t it match what the OT prophecies talk about? Reading McClain will explain this in further detail concerning the six aspects of the kingdom prophesied about in the OT (I think they are spiritual, moral, ecclesiastical, political, social, and one I can’t remember. Since I am not at home I can’t look it up. Sorry).<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>Obviously, they still had a carnal view of the Messiah’s kingdom but just how carnal is not fully known by Acts 1:6. So, to use this text as a defense is pointless for it proves nothing more than they did not know at that precise time the restoration of the kingdom to Israel. It is perhaps that they still believed God would restore the nation of Israel as an ethnic unity to be what Christ has already done by bringing both Jews and Gentiles into a spiritual kingdom of priests. Don’t forget, that Peter also did not understand the dream he had about clean and unclean things, but that did not disprove the fact of God bringing Jews (clean) and Gentiles (unclean) together into one body, His Church. Why, even some of His Apostles did not believe He had risen from the grave at first, until Christ was touched but that doesn’t prove Christ was not Christ or that what he said was not true. Asking why God didn’t tell anyone about something is a useless attempt to prove one’s argument and I think you know that. It neither proves nor disproves anything. I am not concerned with what McClain says for he does not have the definitive answer to holy scripture. The questions were directed to you, not McClain. One of the worst things to do in these type of discussions is to make a claim and when it is challenged to tell that person to go read someone else’s writing. That person is not here to be challenged or to answer other questions one might have.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Sam: The problem Dispensationalism has with the term "end times" is that it can never clearly define just what "end times" really is.

    Pastor Larry: I would take this as a sign of our commitment to Scripture. Since Scripture does not define just what the “end times” really is, we will leave it at that (at least most of us will). The End times or last days of Scripture reference a generally described state of affairs. The time itself is not specified.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>True, to some degree, but scripture does not always leave us guessing and then allow us to draw a doctrinal conclusion based on what it doesn’t say. Scripture can be quite clear even when expressing implicit statements. For instance, the OT priesthood came to an end, Levitical worship, rituals and ceremonies came to an end, the destruction of Jerusalem brought an end to the old Jewish economy. Implicit statements can be just as authoritative as explicit statements but caution should be noted in order to prevent us from going further than what scripture itself allows. Now, if you truly believe “end times” should be left at being undefined then can you include “end times” with DT anymore as a specific?



    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Pastor Larry: If the text is left alone to relay its message to those whom it was intended, it can only refer to the "end times" of the OT Levitical system of sacrifices and temple worship, which truly came to an end in the 1st Century. 2 Tim 3:1 has nothing to do with the end of the OT levitical system. Nor does 2 Peter 3. In fact, I cannot think of any places where the end times or discussed with reference to the Levitical system. Perhaps there are some; let me know what you are thinking of. Furthermore, this brings another interesting point. Here, you want the “text left alone to relay its message to those whom it was intended.” Yet when I argue that the OT should be treated that way, you deny it. Why are you inconsistent on this point?<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>And I never wrote anything about 2 Tim. 3:1 or 2 Peter 3 about “end times” with reference to what you have just stated. Perhaps you have me confused with someone else’s statement or perhaps mine in another post? If you argued that the OT should be treated that way, then perhaps you should state precisely what OT texts you are talking about. So far you have not done so in “our” interaction.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Sam: John did not tell the 1st Century Christians about some unknown future time to them in 1 John 2:18. He clearly and distinctly stated that in the 1st Century, it "was" the last times (days) for them. This is precisely what the Bible reveals and not something that is taught to be unknown with no distinct definition, which is not Biblical revelation.

    Pastor Larry: And you are denying that the church is living in the end times? That is exactly what John was saying. The end times are characterized by Antichrist. And even now many antichrists are here as characterized by their deficient belief concerning the person of Christ. If there was ever evidence that we are living in the last times, it is this teaching.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>You tell me what end times we are living in and precisely where the bible defines what you claim and I will answer your question. If you want a specific answer from me, then I want a specific question from you, fair enough? Furthermore, John 2:18 clearly states that “NOW” (2000 years ago Pastor Larry) there are “ALREADY” many antichrists in the world and from this we know that (2000 YEARS AGO) “IT IS” (present tense 2000 years ago) the last hour.

    Previously in the post, you stated, “Since Scripture does not define just what the “end times” really is, we will leave it at that (at least most of us will). The End times or last days of Scripture reference a generally described state of affairs. The time itself is not specified.” Now you state, “ If there was ever evidence that we are living in the last times, it is this teaching”. If anyone has shown inconsistency, it is you without a doubt.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Sam: There is absolutely nothing in the Bible that reveals the whole church age to be living in the end times. That is purely an invention of Dispensationalism and I would challenge anyone to show clear and distinct Biblical revelation, not Dispensationalism, where any writer of the NT clearly states that the unknown time frame of the church age is the last days referred to by the NT writers.

    Pastor Larry: Where is it revealed that we are not living in the last times? Every thing that the NT says about the issue describes the world in which we now live. Why don’t you (to borrow from your words slightly modified) show clear and distinct Biblical revelation, not [CT], where any writer of the NT clearly states that the unknown time frame of the church age is [not] the last days referred to by the NT writers? In other words, force yourself to answer the question from Scripture, not from your presuppositions.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>Why is answering my challenge so difficult Pastor Larry? If you are so certain of the answer, then the appropriate texts should be no problem for you to present. Instead, you avoid the challenge to present proof and resort to questioning me about something that has not even been discussed. Also, if you want to borrow from what I write, please do so, but do not modify my statements even in the slightest. I am amazed at the numerous attempts by you to falsely charge me with misrepresenting what you wrote, which I clearly have not done, and then you take the priviledge to alter my statements in order to prove your own point. Please don’t do this anymore.

    I will be more than glad to continue this discussion Pastor Larry if you truly desire to do so. However, petty quibbling over what you consider to be a misrepresentation of what you wrote must cease. I have also noticed that much of the discourse in this response was in reference to most anything other than your defense of DT. Would it be possible for us to concern ourselves with that and only that? In other words, when one makes a statement they believe to be true or false concerning DT, one should either defend or prove their statement. If this can’t be done, then one or the other must concede to be either in error or not prepared to give an adequate answer at that time. Do you consider that to be unreasonable?

    Thanks for your time,
    Sam Hughey
     
  19. Pastor Larry

    Pastor Larry <b>Moderator</b>
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    Sam,

    I neither like long responses (either writing or reading). I would much rather have these discussions in person. However, this is the next best thing. I will not address all that you have written, but simply pick what I feel are the most significant. As with you, understand that though the words may appear abrupt or harsh, they are not intended that way. Hopefully we can cut these posts down if you wish to continue.

    As for Gerstner and his book, I will have to pick up a copy again and point out some things. I don’t own it because it wasn’t worth buying. I will provide some examples when I have time to pick up a copy of the book. I am not shying away from what you call “full accountability.” I will address it. I did not know you were interested. I did not understand you to be asking for examples. (Too bad I couldn’t see the deeper meaning [​IMG])

    As for the next exchange about what I said, I will quote only the significant portions because I think they are significant.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Pastor Larry: I cannot see any other way to interpret Scripture consistently".
    Sam’s quote of Larry: you "cannot" see anything other than Dispensationalism.
    Larry’s response to Sam: Notice how you conveniently change what I said to make your pointI did not say I cannot see anything other than dispensationalism. I said that I cannot see any other way to intepret Scripture consistently.
    Sam’s response to Larry: And what did I change? I used your own words in the quote where you stated “I cannot see any other way to interpret Scripture consistently”.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Read the above quotes. I have bolded what you changed. In the last response, you got it right. In the first, you miscited (see end paragraphs of this post for your comments on this issue). I agree with you incidentally: Don’t change or misrepresent what I say. When you do and I point it out, apologize as I have done.

    Here is my point. My basis is hermeneutics. I approach the text with a hermeneutic, not with a system. I then derive my position from the text in light of the hermeneutic. You have accused me of seeing a system. What I said was I see a method of hermeneutics.

    In answer to your question about what I see, I can see how you get your position. It is not a matter of whether or not I can understand the position. Why I reject it is because I reject the hermeneutic that underlies it. It is not consistent with the use of language nor with the corpus of the Old and New Testaments.

    As for “abnormal communication” – I was not referring (I don’t believe) to your interpretation of my words. I had switched here to your approach to the text. (You have misrepresented my words on this count.) You do not approach anyone’s post or anyone’s book for that matter looking for the deeper meaning or the spiritual intent. You approach it believing that the author wrote exactly what he wanted you to understand. Yet you approach Scripture differently. That is what I reject. I contend that God used human language and therefore it should be read in light of the conventions and approach of human language. My position is largely that of E. D. Hirsch, Validity in Interpretation a secular book that defends the single intent/authorial intent hermeneutic in literature.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Pastor Larry, you stated; “For instance, you believe the literal interpretation of the OT prophecies of Christ; you reject the literal interpretation of the Kingdom. Why? Why do you practice a different hermeneutic on these things? I find that inconsistent.

    Sam: And just where did I make the statement that I don’t believe in a literal kingdom? I find that nowhere in my response to you. My only reference to the kingdom was “However, what OT prophecy is our Lord referring to when He related the 1000 years to a literal reign on the earth precisely as Dispensationalism claims?” Now, is this an example of “normal communication”, to assume I meant something other than what I clearly wrote? Perhaps you assumed this as a result of what I wrote but what you assume I believe does not prove what I actually do believe.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>


    I am glad you put this in because I think it shows the validity of my contention. You used a set of words that you feel very clearly communicated what you wanted to say. I “read into” them too much for your fancy and you rightly object. However, when you “read into” Scripture, you feel justified. Now my question is this, “Why are you offended when I treat your language like you treat the language of Scripture?”

    I believe you have demonstrated exactly what you are guilty of – reading more into the words of Scripture than is actually there.

    Now as for the actual issue of the kingdom, when we talk of a literal kingdom, we mean the kingdom of God on earth. I think that is pretty common parlance in this discussion. I assume that you deny that and thus deny what is known as the “literal kingdom.” The dispensational view of the kingdom understands the OT prophecies concerning the kingdom to be fulfilled according to the normal understanding of the language (BTW, I usually stay away from the word “literal”). I do not argue that DT interprets everything literally. I never have. What I have argued is that we interpret normally, understanding figurative language where it is used. Where we differ from CT is that we do not assign a spiritual meaning to literal language.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>By the way, words do not always have a single meaning, neither in the Bible nor in “normal communication”, unless one forces a word to have single meaning and that would void any sense of “authorial intent with a common understanding by the interpreter” since the interpreter alone would decide what the common understanding should be.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Here is an example of where your misunderstanding of the single intent model of hermeneutics has prevented you from understanding the issue. “Single intent” refers, as Terry (Biblical Hermeneutics) says, to “one and the same connection.” It does not argue that a word has the same meaning every time it is used. It says that a word has a single meaning in a given usage. That meaning is determined by authorial intent.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR> The context of the entire (or part of) communication dictates the common understanding, not the interpreter. It is the interpreter’s responsibility to understand what the common understanding is based on what the writer intends through clear and unambiguous text without the aid of pre-suppositions or unfounded assumptions. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>[qb]

    No dispensationalist has ever said it better [​IMG] It is amazing that you say this because your whole system is undermined by this one statement if you really believe it.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>[qb]Forgive me Pastor Larry for it was my understanding that whatever the prophets and/or apostles wrote, they did so based solely on the divine authority of it being from God, not themselves.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>


    I did not deny this. When you talked of what “our Lord” referred to, I understood you to be discussing the words of his earthly ministry. Once again, your objection points out the validity of my position. You had a single meaning and object when I misunderstood it.

    Now as for the kingdom that Christ was referring to, He only has one kingdom. I am not convinced that there is two different gospels. I have never seen it proven. When you assert that dispensationalism teaches two different gospels, I assert that you have gone beyond “essentialist dispensationalism” and added in what some dispensationalists teach that is outside of DT. Some do teach that but it is not an essential part of DT.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR> Your attempt to defend DT with saying “The only people who need it explained are people who do not accept the OT for what it says” is not only insultuous but completely evades the concept of “normal communication”, not to mention failing to prove DT to be correct with its view of the kingdom and the 1000 year reign. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    There was no intent to be insultuous. Please accept my apologies. My point is that the OT is clear on the kingdom. The only ones who question its nature are those who feel compelled to redefine what it teaches because they cannot stomach the concept of an earthly kingdom. The “normal communication” of the OT leads only to a literal earthly kingdom of God on earth (as compared to a spiritual kingdom). The thousand years is not in the OT.

    As for Matthew 12, I will not quote your interpretation here but I will briefly describe my understanding. In vv. 1-21, he is addressing Sabbath issues. In vv. 22ff, he is addressing the power by which he works miracles. (I see now where I inadequately communicated my point. Sorry.) He cast out a demon and the Pharisees accused him of doing it by the power of Satan. Christ points out the obvious contradictory nature of their assertion, and essentially says that they have committed the unpardonable sin. When he says that the kingdom has come upon you by the casting out of demons, he was saying the same thing he says in Luke 17:21. The Kingdom of God was in their midst. The healings, the miracles, all the signs were exactly what the OT prophesied about in the kingdom (another reason why we are not in the kingdom now). However, in Matthew 13, Christ begins to speak in parables so that they will not understand and then repent (vv. 14-15), thus veiling his teaching. Thus the kingdom has been taken away from that generation. After that time, there does not seem to be many miracles done. The reason is that the generation present had rejected the Messiahship and thus had lost the kingdom. Matt 21:43 unambiguously says that the kingdom was taken from that generation and given to a people producing the fruit of it. The referent of “people” might be debated, but the removal of the kingdom most certainly cannot be. Furthermore, if Christ instituted the kingdom, why did the disciples ask in Acts 1:6 if that was the time he was going to restore it. It seems very obvious that they did not think they were living in the kingdom. So in answer, yes, I think the strongman was bound in the kingdom in Matt 12 but he was not bound permanently (as you seem to imply) because now he walks around as a roaring lion, disguises himself as an angel of light, etc. In other words, you cannot use Matt 12 to argue that Satan is now bound. My mistake on the previous comments. I was in a hurry.

    As for where Satan is now bound, I asked for Scripture and you said you had already given it. Sorry I missed it once again. I do not see any Scripture that says that Satan is now bound. I do see a glaring omission on your part in failing to deal with 2 Cor 11:14, 1 Peter 5:7, and 2 Cor 4:4. All of these passages seem to very clearly preclude the teaching that Satan is bound. How do you address them?

    As for binding and authority, I think you miss the point. To be bound seems to be clear enough. You are right that Satan has always been bound by God. However, Revelation 20 speaks very clearly of a binding that will take place (after the time of Christ no matter your position on Revelation). It seems impossible to see it as identical to the binding now or in history. If it were identical then it has no purpose in being said. The text clearly implies that whatever binding is, it is different than the normal state. I think the burden is on you to explain why Rev 20 indicates something different than the current state if indeed it does not represent something different. If it was simply the same, then why say anything? And if Satan is always bound, then what does it mean when he is released at the end of the 1000 years (whatever that is). In other words, Rev 20 clearly implies that something changes and that it changes back again. How do you explain this?

    Moving on, here again, I leave the quotes in (unedited) to demonstrate my original point:
    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Pastor Larry: "There is no legitimate way to shoehorn that into current times. That the early church believed that they were living in the end times is certainly true. The whole church age has been living in the end times. I do not see that as a problem at all. In fact, I think it strenghthens the case for dispensational premillennialism".
    SH: I agree there is no way to shorten this period of time, however, that is precisely what Dispensationalism does by forcing it to fit into a specific and unknown future time and by refusing to accept that Christ Himself began this about 2000 years ago.
    Larry: I left my quote here to show that once again you have attributed something to me that I did not say. I did not say anything about shortening the period of time.
    Sam: First of all Pastor Larry, I never attributed anything to you that you did not write. This is but another of your false assumptions about what you think I meant rather than just merely responding to precisely what was written<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>


    In your first response you “agree that there is no way to shorten this period of time” yet that is “precisely what Dispensationalism does.” I respond by saying that I said nothing of shortening the time (and left my quote in to prove it). Your respond by saying you never attributed anything to me I didn’t write. So here the challenge: Please quote the part of my post where I said anything about shortening the time. You did not respond precisely to what was written because I said nothing of shortening any time. This is not, as you say, “petty word games.” You are putting words in my mouth. You may have misunderstood what I said, (as I did with you on a couple of occasions). But it seems you surely must admit that I did not say what you assert that I did. If I said it, please quote it.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Secondly, you and I both know that DT teaches the millennial kingdom will be 1000 literal earth years. It is both the a-mil and the post-mil view that describes the kingdom as being an indeterminate amount of time, which is vastly far longer than only a literal 1000 years. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    DT teaches the Millennial kingdom to be a thousand years because that is what Scripture says (Rev 20). The burden is on you to show why the text of Scripture is wrong. Here again, DT’s allegiance to the text precludes the kingdom being anything different. Furthermore, you talk of shortening a time. Yet to speak of “shortening” assumes the accuracy or primacy of the longer time. I do not grant that at all because Scripture does not do so.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Let’s see, you believe the millennial kingdom of God will only be 1000 literal earth years, as taught by DT, or you don’t. Since you do not agree with me as seeing this to be figurative, I can only assume you see it as a literal 1000 earthly years. Considering you are a staunch Dispensationalist, I will assume, on the basis of this known fact that you most definitely force the millennial kingdom into a specific period of time known as 1000 literal earth years. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>[/qb[

    1) The text of Scripture specifies a thousand years. I do not feel at liberty to change that whether I agree with it or not.
    2) I do not “force it” into a thousand years. That is what Scripture says. To use language such as “force” implies something that no dispensationalists will agree to. This is exactly what I mean by “misrepresentation.”

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>[qb]Where is the time frame Pastor Larry? … However, if you see a definite time frame in these verses, please present them.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>


    v. 2 – bound him for a thousand years
    v. 3 – until the thousand years were completed
    v. 4 – reigned with Christ for a thousand years
    v. 5 – Rest of the dead were not raised for a thousand years.
    v. 6 – Reign with him for a thousand years.

    The time is mentioned five times in six verses. You say, ”A time frame has a definite beginning and a definite ending. If it doesn’t, then a frame of time is either hypothetical or metaphorical, but never literal, unless one is grossly inconsistent with how one views consistent literalism.” The time frame given above does have a definite beginning and a definite ending. It simply has not been revealed. You seem to think that because God hasn’t told you, it must not be true. As Deut 30 says, “The secret things belong to the Lord our God.” He has not revealed everything to us.

    As for the literal key, chain, pit, etc., I have no problem with that. I simply do not see it as a problem. What is the problem with having a literal key and chains? Do you know something I don’t or do you just want to reject them because you don’t like the thousand years? Furthermore, there is no demand to see everything literal. We use the term “normal” for a reason. Sometimes normal language involves figurative expressions. As for whether or not “1000” is always strictly literal, I have just done a quick search in the NASB95 and browsed through the 134 uses. I do not see any right off that demand a figurative use and most certainly if there are, they are the minority.

    Are the events of Revelation written in a precise chronological order? Not necessarily.

    On to your “clear and unambiguous statements” regarding the kingdom several points are in order. First, it seems you fail to recognize the distinction between the universal kingdom of God and the mediatorial kingdom. See McClain The Greatness of the Kingdom for information on this. Second, you fail to realize that Christ on earth brought a “taste of the kingdom” as evidenced by sayings such as the Kingdom of God is in your midst, etc. But you must admit that the kingdom was taken from that generation. Thus it was removed. The disciples in Acts 1 did not think they were in it and Christ did nothing to correct them. All of your verses could be addressed if space was no object.

    It is funny to me how you like “clear and unambiguous verses” that support your suppositions, but you reject the ones that don’t. I have repeatedly asked Chris to address the “clear and unambiguous” teaching Jeremiah 31:31-40. Perhaps you will be more willing than he to interact with the actual words and meaning of the text. Its “clear and unambiguous” teaching precludes your position.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Since Christ Himself said the kingdom has already come to men 2000 years ago, that is what I will believe and interpret literally for I have no reason to interpret it otherwise. And since scripture declares that believers were already made priests in the kingdom of God 2000 years ago, that is also what I will believe since I also have no reason to believe otherwise. And since we are already priests, already in the kingdom of God, then we must surely be reiging with Christ and will forever since our Lord Himself clearly stated that He is already reigning forever and ever and by the fact that we are in Christ as His priests we are already reigning with Christ as those who have already received the abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>[qb]

    This is most interesting. First, the kingdom was taken away (Matt 21:43) and will be given to a people producing the fruits of it such as are described in Zech 12:10ff. Are you willing to literally interpret Matt 21:43 too? Apparently not. Second as for being made priests in the kingdom of God, you will have to show me where and then explain the relevance. I think every NT believer will be a priest in the kingdom of God. Then you say, “Since were are already priests and already in the kingdom of God” asserting as truth what is disputed. We are not in the kingdom of God. There is no biblical evidence to assert that we are. The last thing Christ said is that it was taken away to be given to a people producing the fruits of it. He did not specify who those people are. In asserting them as the church, you are practicing eisogesis. As for reigning, it is interesting that Rev 5:10 says “will reign” as in a future tense. Yet you have it “now reigning.” Why? Those tenses are pesky things [​IMG]

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>[qb]Obviously, they still had a carnal view of the Messiah’s kingdom but just how carnal is not fully known by Acts 1:6. So, to use this text as a defense is pointless for it proves nothing more than they did not know at that precise time the restoration of the kingdom to Israel. It is perhaps that they still believed God would restore the nation of Israel as an ethnic unity to be what Christ has already done by bringing both Jews and Gentiles into a spiritual kingdom of priests. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>


    First, they did not know the precise time of the restoration to the kingdom of Israel does imply that they understood it to be a restoration of the kingdom to Israel. You say that it is perhaps that they still believed God would restore the nation of Israel as an ethnic unity. My point is precisely that. That is what they understood and Christ did nothing to discourage that belief. Furthermore, he had not yet joined the Jews and Gentiles into the church. That would not happen until Acts 8 and 10. It was still a mystery. (Tense again … man they are killers).

    The bigger question is, if the disciples thought what you assert they did, why didn’t Christ correct them? Don’t you think it would have been pretty important to do such? I think it would be very unethical to allow them to continue to think something that wasn’t going to happen. He did not correct their “carnal” view of the kingdom (that they got from the OT). He simply said it wasn’t for them to know “when.” He did not say it wasn’t for them to know “what.”

    You cite Peter’s dream as support. But you must remember that God revealed to Peter very quickly what that meant. He did not do that with the kingdom.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>I am not concerned with what McClain says for he does not have the definitive answer to holy scripture. The questions were directed to you, not McClain. One of the worst things to do in these type of discussions is to make a claim and when it is challenged to tell that person to go read someone else’s writing. That person is not here to be challenged or to answer other questions one might have. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    It is obvious you are not concerned with McClain. Perhaps you should be because he has explained much about the kingdom. You have probably read many people who support your view as have I. McClain shows from holy Scripture what the problems with your view are. The reason I suggest it is that if you are going to disagree, you could at least be an informed disagreer. You stand a better chance of objective debating if you know what your opponent believes. I know it takes a lot of the fun out of it though [​IMG] It is interesting how many people want to disagree with something they haven't read. At least read the material available.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Now, if you truly believe “end times” should be left at being undefined then can you include “end times” with DT anymore as a specific?<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Sorry I don’t follow this. The end times seem in Scripture to apply to the church age. Again, I have never seen that disputed. Please direct me to someone who does dispute it. I would be interested in reading their case.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>And I never wrote anything about 2 Tim. 3:1 or 2 Peter 3 about “end times” with reference to what you have just stated. Perhaps you have me confused with someone else’s statement or perhaps mine in another post? <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    You said that “end times” referred to the OT Levitical system. I said that 2 Tim 3:1 and 2 Peter 3 both talk of end times and have no reference to the Levitical system. In fact, I don’t know any reference of “end times” or “last times” to the Levitical system. You will have to show me that one. Therefore, your argument is disproved.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>[On treating the OT text as it stands “to whom it was intended”] If you argued that the OT should be treated that way, then perhaps you should state precisely what OT texts you are talking about. So far you have not done so in “our” interaction. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Wow … where to start. How about Jer 31:31-40 and Zech 12:10ff. Treat the text alone and attempt to understand its message to “whom it was intended.”

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>You tell me what end times we are living in and precisely where the bible defines what you claim and I will answer your question.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    2 Peter 3; 2 Tim 3:1ff ; Heb 1:1; James 5:3; 1 Peter 1:20 – All of these passages talk about the end times or the last days as being in the first century. The also describe the current age. Now, if you are going to assert that the “last days” were in the first century and not now, I would ask what are we living in. It would seem that the “last days” would pretty much have to be the last days of the age in which we are living. Again, I am not sure there is a lot of dispute over this. Now, what do these passages refer to if not the church age?

    As for 1 John 2:18, John does say that it is the last times. You would think if the last times were in the first century, we would have a problem being here now. What comes after “last”? John also states that “antichrist is coming.” Has he come already? Or is that still to happen?

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Previously in the post, you stated, “Since Scripture does not define just what the “end times” really is, we will leave it at that (at least most of us will). The End times or last days of Scripture reference a generally described state of affairs. The time itself is not specified.” Now you state, “ If there was ever evidence that we are living in the last times, it is this teaching”. If anyone has shown inconsistency, it is you without a doubt. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Again, allow me to refine my words. What I meant was the length of the time is not specified. Again, it proves my assertion that words have a single meaning in a context and if you violate that meaning you will miss the point of the sentence.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Why is answering my challenge [concerning the church living in the end times] so difficult Pastor Larry? If you are so certain of the answer, then the appropriate texts should be no problem for you to present. Instead, you avoid the challenge to present proof and … <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    I have avoided nothing. I presented the passages that show the church to be living in the end times. I have just presented them again above. You simply ignore them saying you didn’t say anything about them. I know you didn’t; I did.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR> Also, if you want to borrow from what I write, please do so, but do not modify my statements even in the slightest. I am amazed at the numerous attempts by you to falsely charge me with misrepresenting what you wrote, which I clearly have not done, and then you take the priviledge to alter my statements in order to prove your own point.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Demonstrate one place where I miscited you. I have done nothing of the sort. I have misunderstood some things you have written and responded in my misunderstandings, as have you. I will admit that. (Will you??? [​IMG]) Misunderstandings are not intentional. When I quote someone, I do not even touch their quote except to shorten. I am meticulous to not misrepresent them.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>[qbHowever, petty quibbling over what you consider to be a misrepresentation of what you wrote must cease.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>[/qb]

    Interesting in light of your immediately above paragraph. Apparently you can change what I say and misrepresent it without compunction, but God forbid that I might do it. Can you spell inconsistent?? [​IMG]

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR> I have also noticed that much of the discourse in this response was in reference to most anything other than your defense of DT.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Nice attempt at the high road but show a place I have said something not related to dispensationalism. I agree that we should stay on the topic.I agree that when one makes an assertion about dispensationalism or (covenantalism for that matter) that they should defend or assert it. Again, I have done that. You don’t like the answer because of your presupposition. However, it is baseless to assert that I have not dealt with the topic.

    Larry
     
  20. Dr. Bob

    Dr. Bob Administrator
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    Extremely lengthy posts NEVER get read, folks. Try to keep it to a couple of paragraphs.

    I am interested in this subject and just scrolled down for 20 seconds through 2 posts.

    Please deal with issues in "bite-sized" pieces that will enhance reading and responding by everyone. Thank you.
     
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