Posts Tagged ‘literal’

Why I Am A Christian And Believe The Bible Is The Literal Inspired Word Of God

October 6, 2015

There is simply so much to contemplate in these words from the Apostle and leader of Jesus’ Disciples, St. Peter, that I urge everyone to consider:

For we were not making up clever stories when we told you about the powerful coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. We saw his majestic splendor with our own eyes when he received honor and glory from God the Father. The voice from the majestic glory of God said to him, “This is my dearly loved Son, who brings me great joy.”  We ourselves heard that voice from heaven when we were with him on the holy mountain.

Because of that experience, we have even greater confidence in the message proclaimed by the prophets. You must pay close attention to what they wrote, for their words are like a lamp shining in a dark place—until the Day dawns, and Christ the Morning Star shines in your hearts.  Above all, you must realize that no prophecy in Scripture ever came from the prophet’s own understanding, or from human initiative. No, those prophets were moved by the Holy Spirit, and they spoke from God.  — 2 Peter 1:16-21

What grabs me about this passage (which I have memorized because it is so powerful to me) is the eyewitness account from a disciple how had the unique opportunity to see “the Word of God” (see John 1:1-18 to see another close disciple of Christ literally call Jesus “the Word”) alive and in Incarnate in the flesh.  Peter is zooming in on one experience related in the Gospels, when James, John and Peter himself saw Jesus transfigured into glory (Matthew 17:1–9, Mark 9:2-8, Luke 9:28–36).  And Moses, representing the Law (see John 1:17 as an example), and Elijah, representing the Prophets (Malachi 4:5 cf. Matthew 17:11-13), were sent from heaven as a witness to this glorification of Jesus before these men’s very eyes.

It sends chills down my spine.  And I have no doubt in my mind that it continued to send chills down Peter’s spine every single time he thought about that moment for the rest of his life until he himself was crucified as a martyr in testimony of his Lord and Savior, Christ Jesus, under Emperor Nero in 64 AD.

Listen to what this man who testified to his faith in his very own blood had to say: he was not making up a bunch of fables or fairy tales: he himself saw everything he writes about and he saw it in the company of other men who saw the same things alongside him.  You keep seeing the witness verbs: “We saw.”  “With our own eyes.”  “We ourselves heard that voice.”  “When we were with him.”

They saw it with their own eyes and they heard it with their own ears and they touched it with their own hands.  St. John – another Apostle and Disciple of Christ who also personally witnessed and experienced the Transfiguration of Jesus with Peter, said the following:

We proclaim to you the one who existed from the beginning, whom we have heard and seen. We saw him with our own eyes and touched him with our own hands. He is the Word of life.  This one who is life itself was revealed to us, and we have seen him. And now we testify and proclaim to you that he is the one who is eternal life. He was with the Father, and then he was revealed to us.  We proclaim to you what we ourselves have actually seen and heard so that you may have fellowship with us. And our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son, Jesus Christ.  We are writing these things so that you may fully share our joy.  — 1 John 1:1-4

Again, St. John, “the disciple whom Jesus loved” (John 13:23, 13:25, 19:26, 20:2, 21:7, 21:20), again and again pointed to what he had personally witnessed and experienced: “W proclaim to you the One … whom we have heard and seen.”  “We saw Him with our own eyes and touched Him with our own hands.”  “This One who is life itself was revealed to us, and we have seen Him.”

Everything that Jesus did and said was publicly witnessed, especially by His Disciples, who Jesus commissioned as His witnesses.  They were there.  They lived it.  They saw it and heard it and touched it.  John recorded that Thomas literally put his fingers in the holes that remained in Jesus’ wrists and ankles following His Resurrection (John 20:19-28).

It is a FACT of history that all of the Disciples of Jesus, save old John – who himself was tortured and suffered scrounging for existence as a slave-laborer in the mines of an island prison – sealed the truth of their testimony in their own blood.  Why was it not John’s fate to die as a martyr?  Maybe because he was the one that Jesus commissioned to take care of His mother, Mary, when he said the words, “Woman, behold your son.”  And to “the disciple whom He loved” the words, “Behold your mother” (John 19:26-27).  But it was ultimately St. John alone, the youngest of the Disciples during the public Ministry of Jesus on earth, who lived on as the final apostolic link to the unbreakable chain of the Testimony of the Church to the Resurrection of Jesus Christ, the Son of God, from the dead, and of the New Life in Christ that was available to any who would call on the Name of the LORD Jesus so they could experience the Resurrection Life of Jesus for themselves.

We know that people can sincerely believe something that turns out not to be true.  And yes, there are even people who would be willing to die for what turns out to be a lie.  I submit that every Islamic terrorist who blows himself up so he can kill as many innocent people as possible, believing that he will go straight to Paradise and enjoy the carnal affections of seventy virgins, fall under this category.

I remember watching the theologically-liberal series, “From Jesus to Christ” on PBS.  But even the theological-liberal New Testament scholars that the series heavily relied on all unanimously acknowledged “that his disciples really and with absolute conviction saw him again afterwards.”  St. Peter continued to proclaim the Resurrection of Jesus from the dead AS A FACT THAT HE HAD WITNESSED for more than thirty years until his own death.  St. John continued to proclaim the FACT of the Resurrection THAT HE HAD PERSONALLY SEEN, HEARD AND TOUCHED for something on the order of seventy years after the Crucifixion of Jesus until his own death around 100 AD.

What makes the Disciples – who of course were also true martyrs who died as witnesses rather as than mass murderers who died killing innocent people – categorically different is the fact that they PERSONALLY saw and PERSONALLY experienced and PERSONALLY heard and PERSONALLY touched Jesus after His Resurrection from the dead.  They PERSONALLY were there to experience all the key events FIRSTHAND.

They really, sincerely, with absolute conviction believed the message of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  And my point is that there was absolutely NO POSSIBLE WAY they could have been mistaken.

Let me get back to the Transfiguration of Jesus, for example.  Jesus took Peter, James and John with Him.  They were all there to see the Transfiguration of Jesus and experience it for themselves.  And afterward, they clearly would have been saying to one another, “Did you just see what I saw?”  And “What did YOU see?”  And they were easily able to verify that it had really, truly happened, that they were NOT having a hallucination, for the very simple reason that three people cannot have the same hallucination, the same exact departure from reality, at the same time.  Three witnesses saw the same thing.  They verified it to one another.  It happened.  It wasn’t just a “clever story.”  It was real.  Real enough to be willing to live for.  Real enough to be willing to die for after having lived your entire life completely transformed by that they each saw with their own eyes, heard with their own ears, and touched with their own hands.

Twelve ordinary, uneducated men from a conquered backwater Roman province rocked the world with “what they had heard, what they had seen with their eyes, what they beheld and their hands handled, concerning the Word of Life,” as John put it in the opening verse of his first epistle.  Think also about the key early followers of Jesus: think of James the Just, the brother of Jesus.  Not only had James not believed in Jesus or His ministry while it was popular to do so, but James had actually believed that Jesus was out of His mind.  I just ask you: what would it take for you to believe that your brother was in fact GOD?  I mean, just imagine being the parents: “Mom, my brother is saying He’s God again!”  “Stop telling James you’re God, Jesus!”  “But I Am that I Am!”  “MOM!”  Seriously: imagine what had to happen to bring James to his knees before Jesus: first of all, it required a post-Resurrection appearance, which Paul describes in what is very clearly an EARLY Christian creed found in 1 Corinthians 15 dated to within five years of the Resurrection by historians: “Then He appeared to James, then to all the apostles” (vs. 7).   James had to realize upon self-reflection how Jesus had lived His entire life in moral perfection.  And James believed that his half-brother (James’ father was Joseph; Jesus’ Father was God) truly was God Incarnate.  And he believed.  James became the leader of the early church in Jerusalem.  James came to be known by the nickname “Camel Knees” because of the large calluses on his knees that he developed from spending long hours on his knees in prayer – to his Brother.  Again, imagine the personal transformation that had to occur!  James was murdered about AD 62 in a mob riot incited by the Sanhedrin.  He gave his LIFE in his faith in his Brother.  Imagine that!  Add to the mix Saul of Tarsus.  Saul was a rabid Pharisee in the very spirit of the rabid Sanhedrin that murdered James.  He went out breathing fire and hate in his desire to destroy what he viewed as a terrible, blasphemous heresy against his beloved Judaism as men and women began increasingly worshiping One named Jesus they claimed was the Messiah of Israel.  Saul went out on the Road to Damascus to hunt down Christians and put them in chains; somehow, he amazingly BECAME a Christian when he heard the very Jesus he was trying to eradicate speak to him and strike him blind until another Christian came to heal this Persecutor of the Church.  Paul, after having suffered a LIFETIME of suffering for His Lord whom he once tried to exterminate from history, died as a martyr in testimony to his absolute faith in Jesus as the Messiah of Israel and the Savior of the World.

How do you explain these men???

Now, allow me to return to 1 Peter 1:16-21 and enter into evidence the additional witness of Moses and Elijah, and what their appearance on the Mount of Transfiguration meant: as I already pointed out, Moses represented the Law, and Elijah represented the Prophets.  In other words, they represented the Scriptures, the Word of God as it had been handed down to God’s people from Adam and Eve until Jesus’ day.

Take some time, please, to just scroll down the list of the hundreds of prophecies from the Law and the Prophets that Jesus literally fulfilled in His First Advent when He came as the Suffering Servant, to die as the Lamb of God in fulfillment of the penalty in the Law for the sins of the world.

Those prophecies clearly present 456 identifying characteristics of what the Messiah would be like. And the mathematical odds of one man fulfilling just EIGHT of them is one chance in ten with seventeen zeroes after it, or less than one chance in a quadrillion.  Pretty good job for 32 men who mostly never even TALKED to one another, let alone in any way, shape or form conspired.

Over forty men who wrote over a period of over 2,000 years.  And yet it marvelously, miraculously tells one story: the story of the fall of the human race, and the story of the Creator God who ultimately became a man Himself in order to take our sins upon Himself and save us.

Let’s do some comparison for the sake of contrast: how many men wrote the Qur’an?  One.  His name was Muhammad.  How many other men could independently verify that Muhammad wasn’t making up a whole bunch of stories?  Zero.  Muhammad was alone in a cave called Hira the first time he allegedly received the dictation of the Qur’an by an angel that Muhammad had already heard about from the Jews who frequently came along the Arabian trading routes.  At no time during any of Muhammad’s revelations do we ever find that anyone else was present.

If you want to trust a sacred Book, which one should you trust?  Particularly given the fact that Muhammad clearly pirated large portions of the rival sacred Book: he couldn’t even find his own angel; he had to steal one from the Jews.  He couldn’t even invent his own patriarch, he had to pirate Abraham from the Jews and warp their account to reject Isaac and make Ishmael the hero in blatant contradiction of what the original account presented in Genesis chapters 15 through 18.  And if you read the excellent work, “The Truth About Muhammad,” you will find that, amazingly, every single time Muhammad wanted to do something to advance his own interest, he would somehow have a revelation from Allah that let him have whatever he wanted.  There were dozens of these “convenient surahs,” but the most infamous of them were the so-called “Satanic Verses” that allowed Muhammad to receive one “revelation” that allowed allies to have their own gods in order to secure their alliance against a common enemy, only to then receive a completely contradictory “revelation” when the first “revelation” became inconvenient for Muhammad.  It’s kind of like me promising I’ll give you a billion dollars if you risk your life fighting for me, and then I receive a revelation from God after you’ve fought and won my war for me declaring that I don’t have to pay you a dime.  Whenever Muhammad wanted something, he could mysteriously soon afterward have a surah “revealed” to him that justified his doing or taking or murdering or marrying whatever he wanted.

The same is true of the Book of Mormon.  One guy wrote it.  Initially, there were three so-called “witnesses” that claimed they had seen the “golden plates” that Smith said he used to write the Book of Mormon.  Such that:

The Three Witnesses were a group of three early leaders of the Latter Day Saint movement who wrote in a statement of 1830 that an angel had shown them the golden plates from which Joseph Smith translated the Book of Mormon and that they had heard God’s voice testifying that the book had been translated by the power of God

The Three Witnesses were Oliver Cowdery, Martin Harris, and David Whitmer, whose joint testimony, in conjunction with a separate statement by Eight Witnesses, has been printed with nearly every edition of the Book of Mormon since its first publication in 1830. All three witnesses eventually broke with Smith and were excommunicated from the church.[1] In 1838, Joseph Smith called Cowdery, Harris, and Whitmer “too mean to mention; and we had liked to have forgotten them.”[2]

Some “witnesses.”

The Mormon Church still disgracefully calls them “the Three Witnesses.”  I call them “False Witnesses.” As history does to anyone who looks into their “testimony.”

You ultimately find, if you bother to do the research, that while the so-called “witnesses” (both the three and the eight) testified that they had “seen” the golden plates. But they actually only “saw” them “by faith.”

I suppose I could point out that at least Joseph Smith managed to find some so-called “witnesses” who at least initially claimed to be able to verify that Smith wasn’t full of bovine feces, which makes his book vastly superior to Muhammad’s in that regard.  And at least Joseph Smith managed to invent his own angel, rather than merely pirating one from the Bible, as Muhammad had.  The problem is that all of Joseph Smith’s primary “witnesses” were bogus and ended up being excommunicated from the church their “witness” had given birth to.  And then there is the unfortunate fact that Joseph Smith was a convicted fraud and con-man before he suddenly became a “prophet.”

That is NOT the way the Bible is.  Not at ALL.  There are layers upon layers of interlocking sources.  As examples from the Old Testament period, Ruth was written contemporaneously with Judges.  So you have writers who didn’t even know each other authenticating one another.  The Pentateuch covered the period written in Job.  During the period of 2 Samuel, David was writing his Psalms.  And we can learn more from both sources about the other from each.  As we get into the Books of Kings, we’ve got all kinds of interlocking sources: we’ve got 1 and 2 Chronicles, Song of Solomon, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, Obadiah, Joel, Amos, Hosea, Micah, Isaiah, Nahum, Zephaniah, Habakkuk, Jeremiah and Lamentations all during that same period.  All these different biblical writers giving us accounts that never contradict one another the way Muhammad frequently contradicted Muhammad.  Daniel and Ezekiel wrote during the same basic period of time.  Ezra, Esther, Haggai, and Zachariah were written over the same period of time.  Nehemiah and Malachi were written over the same period of time.

The same is true of the New Testament, only we have even MORE corroboration.  How many Gospels, how many accounts of the life of Jesus, how many perspectives, do we have?  We’ve got FOUR.  We’ve got St. Matthew, we’ve got St. Paul, we’ve got St. Luke, we’ve got St. Peter, we’ve got St. John, we’ve got St. James, we’ve got St. Jude, we’ve got the writer of Hebrews, all writing about the same Gospel over the same period of time.  And they NEVER contradict one another when their writings are closely studied in full context.  The deeper you get, the more the harmony.  Which is an amazing, and literally miraculous thing.

And the Bible has been called “God’s Anvil,” because it has stood the test of time as critics have tried to pound away at it for millennia.  No book has been more read.  No book has been more attacked.  The Bible has withstood everything ever hurled by hell against it.  The atheist Voltaire sneered, “In no more than one hundred years, intellects like mine will make the Bible disappear.” But within fifty years of his own death, Voltaire’s own printing press was used to churn out BIBLES for people hungry to devour the Word of God.  That is why no Book has ever changed more hearts and transformed more lives.

Again, for the sake of contrast, try that with the Qur’an.  Salmon Rushdie pointed out the sordid history of the self-refutation of Muhammad as a prophet of God, and he was rewarded with a fatwa on his life as a result.  And they recently reinstated it just to make sure we know they’re still out to murder him.  Think of the sneering liberals who mock the Bible and Christians who would NEVER DARE do the same thing to the Qur’an and Muslims – because they are cowards and because they know that Muslims would murder them whereas Christians will only pray for them.  My point is that the Bible has withstood 2,000 years of hateful, demonic attack and unrelenting criticism from unbelievers that would have long-since destroyed any book that was NOT from God.  And the Bible didn’t survive by murdering and massacring its intellectual and moral opponents the way the Qur’an has.

The New York Times Best Seller List never mentions the Bible.  That is because The Bible refutes absolutely everything liberalism stands for.  But the Bible is every single day, every single week, every single month, every single year, year-after-year, century-after-century, the best-selling Book on planet EARTH.  NOTHING ELSE even comes CLOSE to it.  More than FIVE BILLION Bibles have been sold, according to Guinness World Records.

At this point I can throw in the incredible uniqueness of Jesus.  There has NEVER been in ALL the history of the world ANYONE like Him.  Today, every major religion on earth has tried to claim Him, co-opt Him, make Jesus theirs: not only the obvious Christianity, but Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism, etcetera.  This is not true of ANY other religious figure from ANY other religion.  Jesus is UNIVERSAL.  And it is fitting that He would be so: because He alone is the Savior of the whole world, in fulfillment of the Scriptures and demonstrated by His Empty Tomb where every other religion has a corpse for a founder.

So let me get back to where I began, with 2 Peter 1:16-21.  Peter witnessed, along with James and John – with Moses and Elijah representing the testimony of the Law and the Prophets of the Deity and Ministry of Jesus of Nazareth – the Transfiguration of Christ.  And Peter, reflecting on that day, writes:

Because of that experience, we have even greater confidence in the message proclaimed by the prophets. You must pay close attention to what they wrote, for their words are like a lamp shining in a dark place—until the Day dawns, and Christ the Morning Star shines in your hearts.  Above all, you must realize that no prophecy in Scripture ever came from the prophet’s own understanding, or from human initiative. No, those prophets were moved by the Holy Spirit, and they spoke from God.  — 2 Peter 1:19-21

Peter is pointing out what the great historian and careful researcher St. Luke pointed out in his Gospel when he wrote of two disciples experience when they unknowingly encountered the Resurrected Jesus on the Road to Emmaus.  They had been talking to one another about all of the events that had taken place since Jesus’ arrest and public execution and Jesus – His identity concealed from them – began walking with them as they walked along the road.  Jesus asked them, “What are you guys talking about?”  And they incredulously asked Jesus, “Are you the only one visiting Jerusalem and unaware of the things which have happened here in these days?” (Luke 24:18).  Jesus asked, “What things?”  And they told Him, culminating in this:

And some of those who were with us went to the tomb and found it just exactly as the women also had said: but Him [Jesus] they did not see.

And He said to them, “O foolish men and slow of heart to believe in all that the prophets have spoken!  Was it not necessary for the Christ to suffer these things and to enter into His glory?”  And beginning with Moses and with all the prophets, He explained to them the things concerning Himself in all the Scriptures.  — Luke 24:24-27

And again when Jesus appeared to the eleven Disciples and Jesus ate with them and told them:

“These are My words which I spoke to you while I was still with you, that all things which are written about Me in the Law of Moses and the Prophets and the Psalms must be fulfilled.”  Then He opened their minds to understand the Scriptures, and He said to them, “This it is written that the Christ should suffer and rise again from the dead the third day; and that repentance for forgiveness of sins should be proclaimed in His name to all the nations, beginning from Jerusalem.  You are witnesses of these things.”  — Luke 24:44-48

I’ve already provided a link to the hundreds of prophecies that Jesus would have explained to them how He fulfilled in His birth, His ministry, His sacrificial death as the Lamb of God in atonement for the sins of the world and His glorious resurrection.

That’s what Peter is describing.  He saw the prophetic Word of the Scripture come alive right before his very eyes, his very ears, his very hands.  The Scriptures are a lamp in a dark place that shine our way straight to Christ and to His salvation from sin into a new birth through regeneration and a new life through sanctification.

There are times in my mind when something occurs to me and I conclude based on my experience, based on my reasoning, based on my intuition, that something is going to happen.  That’s NOT what the prophets did.  Peter – a prophet and writer of Scripture through divine inspiration himself – specifically says that prophets DON’T write from their own understanding of what they happen to think, or from any human initiative or intuition.  NO, Peter says very plainly, these prophets were moved by the Holy Spirit, and they spoke from God.

So Peter had Jesus Himself teach him about how the Scriptures prophesied His coming and precisely detail what He would do when He came.  Hundreds of prophecies fulfilled; 456 identifying characteristics described.  And Peter – who also witnessed the Resurrected Jesus after having seen His dead body – saw the prophetic Word made more sure.

More sure than anything in this world.

I am now watching with amazement the last days prophecies unerringly coming to pass.  I read the Scriptures in Ezekiel about the coming war of Gog-Magog, in which Russia and Iran lead a confederation of nations that would ultimately all become Muslim attack Israel.  I have now witnessed for the first time in history, I believe, both Russia AND Iran in Syria, RIGHT NEXT DOOR TO ISRAEL.  We are seeing the last days clock zooming toward Armageddon because of the abject demonic foolishness of the Obama presidency, make no mistake.

All the political coalitions are in place that the Bible amazingly described 2,600 years ago.  China’s way across the mighty Euphrates River has not merely been cleared, it has literally been PAVED as a network of concrete dams literally allows them to shut off one of the mightiest rivers on earth.  And not only cross the river but use it as their HIGHWAY to Armageddon.

Is the passage of Revelation 6:14, detailing the opening days of the period that will soon befall a wicked humanity when “The heavens receded like a scroll being rolled up,” was that merely symbolic?  Not when you consider that that is PRECISELY what a nuclear warhead looks like when it is detonated.  And God’s Word prophetically saw that day coming 2,000 years BEFORE THE FIRST HUMAN EVEN DREAMED OF THE POSSIBILITY OF A NUCLEAR WEAPON.

Just as God’s word wasn’t merely being “allegorical” or “symbolic” when it described an army of 200 million soldiers from the east – PRECISELY WHERE SUCH A VAST ARMY WOULD COME TODAY – when at the time this prophecy was given there weren’t 200 million human beings on the entire planet.

Jesus fulfilled all the prophecies of His First Advent LITERALLY.  He wasn’t symbolically born of a virgin; He didn’t allegorically rise from the dead.  It is fools from hell who deny the literal Word of God.  And in the same way, we are watching the prophecies of the end times and the Second Advent culminating in Jesus Christ coming as King of kings and Lord of lords being fulfilled LITERALLY.  And that is made sure just as sure as the fact that Russia and Iran are not “symbolically” in Syria immediately north of Israel.

Even if you’ve got nothing else, ESPECIALLY if you’ve got nothing else in this world, you can COUNT on the Scriptures.  that is because “The grass withers, the flower fades, but the Word of our God stands forever” (Isaiah 40:8).

And you can count on Jesus, the Word whom the Word of God heralded from the first chapters of the Book of Genesis straight through the Scarlet Thread that runs through the entire Bible.

Maranatha, Lord Jesus.  How I long to see you, my dear Friend Who sticks by me closer than a brother.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Theological And Political Liberals: The Exact Same People Doing The Exact Same Thing

March 16, 2014

It doesn’t matter whether you’re having a discussion about politics or religion, liberals are truly exasperating to have a conversation with.

Whether they are reading their Bible or their Constitution, it comes down to the exact same issue:

The Bible:

The Bible doesn’t mean what it actually (literally) says: it means whatever we liberals say it means.

Liberals are people who read the Bible and understand that God loves homosexuality and sodomy.  Because it really doesn’t matter to them what the Bible says or what God thinks.  After all, they have replaced God with their totalitarian human State.  And the Bible merely means whatever the hell they say it means rather than, you know, what it actually and clearly SAYS.

In much the same way, liberals have tried to “fundamentally transform” Jesus into some kind of raving government-power-hoarding socialist.  Show me just ONE TIME that Jesus called for a bigger and more totalitarian human government, or for government to get more involved with ANYTHING.  When the disciples came to Jesus and told Him that there were 5,000 people and that they needed something to eat, He did NOT say, “We need to have a government welfare State”; He said YOU feed them.  And it was JESUS who blessed the food for the crowd, NOT Herod or Pilate or Obama.  And in fact, given that it was big government that murdered Jesus and murdered St. Paul and St. Peter along with a few million other Christians just in the 1st century AD alone, just what the hell do you think Christians who best knew Jesus and who best understood Christianity would have said to Obama coming along (after mocking the Bible) and telling them that what they needed most was the government that had just murdered them???

And this is not an answer that you should need to think about if you have a mind or even a brain.  Because Jesus told the parable of the good Samaritan; He most certainly did NOT tell the story of the good bureaucrat.

Not that liberals give one damn about what the Bible says.  They truly couldn’t care LESS what the Bible says.

The Constitution (and the Declaration of Independence and Bill of Rights):

The Constitution doesn’t mean what it actually (literally) says: it means whatever we liberals say it means.

It really doesn’t matter to them whether the Constitution guarantees the right of the people to keep and bear arms (GUNS) or that such right is NOT TO BE INFRINGED.  Liberals don’t want the people to be able to keep and bear arms because an armed citizenry interferes with their establishment of Government as Dictator God.  And since liberals don’t want it to mean what it clearly and obviously means, it simply has to mean something else.  And that’s why it is their passion to infringe upon what is NOT to be infringed upon (like your right to have the health care you want and see the doctor you want to see).

Not that liberals give one damn about what the Constitution says.  They truly couldn’t care LESS what the Constitution says.  It’s just another text for them to hijack and spin and pervert.

Either the text means something as it was written and as it was intended by its authors or it doesn’t.  To liberals, it means nothing because they don’t bow down before God or His Word or to any sacred principle laid down by the wisdom of the founding fathers; they bow down only to totalitarian human government and to whatever will seize more power for that totalitarian human government.  And whenever what they want to believe gets in the way of the facts, well, so much the worse for the facts.  And that’s why “it depends on what the meaning of the word ‘is’ is.”  Because it ALWAYS depends on what the meaning of the word ‘is’ is with them, and ‘is’ means whatever the hell they want it to mean at any constantly shifting moment.

In John 18:37, Jesus told Pilate, “You say correctly that I am a king” (i.e,., He was saying it’s really NOT about YOUR human government, but about My DIVINE government). He continued, “For this I have been born, and for this I have come into the world, to testify to the truth. Everyone who is of the truth hears My voice.”  Liberals don’t hear Jesus’ voice because they WON’T hear His voice.  Rather, they have replaced His voice with their own.  They have distorted and frankly perverted (as in homosexual sodomy) Jesus’ voice with Postmillennialism, Amillennialism, socialism, fascism, Marxism, communism, existentialism, postmodernism and whatever other “-ism” they need to do the job at any given time.

Liberals’ favorite game is to equivocate the truth.  In the words of their hero, Pontius Pilate, they ask, “What is truth?”  And of course just like Pilate they turn their backs on the One who is its very embodiment.  I have many times watched with amazement as liberals have zipped back and forth between the two false polar extremes of truth (“Nothing is true” and “Everything is true”).  It’s amazing to watch: they’re exploit the fact that people disagree on the one hand to explain to you that there is no ultimate truth.  Not understanding that the statement “nothing is true” literally kills itself (think about it: if nothing is true, then the statement that “nothing is true” would have to be true – but that would make the statement “nothing is true” false.  Which is to say it is self-refuting.  The fact that people disagree is irrelevant.  In science we have FREQUENTLY experienced moments in which every single human being was wrong until ONE GUY introduced the truth.  What is “true” has nothing whatsoever to do with what people think; it has only to do with conforming to actual reality (i.e. agreeing with God) irregardless of what people think.

On the other hand, liberals will then also immediately and hypocritically swing wildly to the other polar extreme, that of assuming the position that “everything is true.”  Allow me to explain:

I had a conversation with a liberal who noticed my star of David and liked it because he likes it that ALL religions are equally true (not just Christianity or Christianity and Judaism, but Christianity, Judaism, Islam, Buddhism, Hinduism,Confucianism, Disneylandism and whatever else strikes his fancy).  The fact that these religions mutually contradict one another was irrelevant.  Reality contradicted political correctness, and so so much the worse for reality.

As an example, on the one hand, Eastern religions and the monotheistic religions Christianity, Judaism and Islam mutually exclude each other.  Eastern religions annihilate the individual.  The individual self must literally cease to exist in Buddhism and Hinduism.  Individuality is merely an illusion.  “You” aren’t really you; there IS no “you.”  In fact, the clinging to individuality is the CAUSE OF ALL SUFFERING in Buddhism.  Contrast that with God, who according to Genesis 1:27, which states “So God created man in His own image (i.e., in the image of a conscious, personal, individual God), in the image of God He created him (i.e., as a unique individual); male and female He created them (as a unique individual created to have community with other unique individuals).”  In the Scriptures, God says to mankind, “Come, let us reason together” (Isaiah 1:18).  Liberals who deny God and therefore piss away the image of God aside, human beings are rational as well as being personal individuals.

Eastern religions and the monotheistic religions cannot both possibly be true.  If one is true, the other is simply false.  They don’t merely disagree with one another; they mutually exclude one another.  No rational mind can simultaneously believe in mutually exclusive concepts.  Which is why only liberals do it.

In the same way, Christianity and Islam (and Judaism as it is tragically understood) likewise mutually exclude one another.  Christianity, as part of the Trinity (the Tri-Unity of the Godhead) upholds the Son of God; in Islam, it is the highest blasphemy to claim that God has a Son.  One cannot be in any sense true without the other being false and ruled out.

But liberals don’t think that way simply because “truth” does not matter to them and they don’t WANT to think that way.  As the Scripture puts it, they prefer darkness and refuse to comprehend the light.  As the Scripture puts it, they are “always learning but never coming to a knowledge of the truth.”  They prefer the sound of their own voices as they express the slogan of politically-correct gibberish, “There are many paths to God” as opposed to ever once listening to the voice of God in His Word.

“Political correctness” is the death of critical thinking because it puts sentimentality on the throne and utterly dispenses with inconvenient things such as truth, facts, reason and logic.

I’m hardly saying all the destruction to America was worth it by any means, but it has at least been highly informative for increasingly large numbers of Americans to see everything that Barack Obama and liberals like him promised proven to be complete and utter idiocy.  And that is because their economic thinking, “The more we tax and regulate businesses, the more jobs they will create” is every single bit as obviously self-refuting as any of their religious idiocy.

Theological liberalism and political liberalism will very soon be truly wedded together in the coming of the Antichrist: a big-government politician they will worship in place of God.  And it is because of the machinations of liberals that this beast is coming and will soon arrive to deceive the world and literally lead it into hell as he promises his liberal Utopia.

Are You Building Your Ark Yet? Seeing the World Clearly Through the Literal Word of God

October 24, 2013

This article is about the deception that I submit is clearly characterizing these last days and the view that we need to read and understand our Bibles LITERALLY to understand the end times in which we live.  Allow me to explain how the title and subtitle zoom in on how these objectives inter-relate: “Are you building your ark yet?”  Imagine for a moment what would have happened in Genesis 6:13-18 had Noah refused to understand God as literally saying He was going to destroy the earth with a literal flood and that God wanted Noah to build a literal ark of certain specified literal materials and dimensions???  What would have happened to the human race??? What would have happened to Noah when the first drops began to fall and he shouted into the rain, “I thought this was all just an ALLEGORY!”

The allegorical method (essential to Amillennialist and Postmillennialist interpretation) has come to dominate so much of the “Christian Church’s” understanding of the Bible.  So first of all, allow me to define “allegory” with a few online dictionary definitions:

Is that what the Bible is?  Seriously?  Is THAT all your Bible is?  NOT.

Now allow me to present a very different method of interpreting the Bible:

THUS SAYS THE LORD

Billy Graham said in one of his televised Crusades that as he began his ministry, he struggled deeply with the question as to how he would present the Bible: would he make his ministry about trying to argue the truth of the Bible, or would he simply state it as the Word of the Living God?  He chose the latter path – and I would argue that his powerful ministry as the greatest evangelist in the history of the world after St. Paul bore out that fact.  If we just allow the Word of God to speak for itself, it has power that can change the world.  If we impose our human unbelief upon it, it has no power for it is no longer the Word of God at all, but only the perverted word of men.

What does the Bible say about itself?  And how should we receive it?

  • Blessed is the one who does not walk in step with the wicked or stand in the way that sinners take or sit in the company of mockers, but whose delight is in the law of the LORD, and who meditates on his law day and night. —  Psalm 1:1-2
  • The law of the Lord is perfect, refreshing the soul. The statutes of the Lord are trustworthy, making wise the simple. The precepts of the Lord are right, giving joy to the heart. The commands of the Lord are radiant, giving light to the eyes. The fear of the Lord is pure, enduring forever. The decrees of the Lord are firm, and all of them are righteous.  — Psalm 19:7-9
  • Your word I have treasured in my heart, That I may not sin against You. – Psalm 119:11
  • Their hearts are callous and unfeeling, but I delight in your law. – Psalm 119:70
  • Your word, LORD, is eternal; it stands firm in the heavens.  – Psalm 119:89
  • Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path.  – Psalm 119:105
  • These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts.  – Deut 6:6
  • The grass withers and the flowers fall, but the word of our God endures forever – Isaiah 40:8
  • Listen to Me, you who know righteousness, A people in whose heart is My law; Do not fear the reproach of man, Nor be dismayed at their revilings.  – Isaiah 51:7
  • And we also thank God continually because, when you received the word of God, which you heard from us, you accepted it not as a human word, but as it actually is, the word of God, which is indeed at work in you who believe.  – 1 Thessalonians 2:13
  • and that from childhood you have known the sacred writings which are able to give you the wisdom that leads to salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work. – 2 Timothy 3:15-17
  • For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart. — Hebrews 4:12
  • We also have the prophetic message as something completely reliable, and you will do well to pay attention to it, as to a light shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts.  Above all, you must understand that no prophecy of Scripture came about by the prophet’s own interpretation of things.  For prophecy never had its origin in the human will, but prophets, though human, spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit.  – 2 Peter 1:19-21
  • Beloved, while I was making every effort to write you about our common salvation, I felt the necessity to write to you appealing that you contend earnestly for the faith which was once for all handed down to the saints.  – Jude 3
  • He replied, “Go your way, Daniel, because the words are rolled up and sealed until the time of the end.  Many will be purified, made spotless and refined, but the wicked will continue to be wicked. None of the wicked will understand, but those who are wise will understand.  – Daniel 12:9-10

The last days are coming, and “deception” will be THE factor that will plunge most of the world into hell.  One of the things that we learn about Satan and the coming Antichrist who will be personally indwelt by Satan is that the coming political Antichrist will be a master of deception.  Both Daniel and the coming Antichrist are given “wisdom” in terms of “mysteries.”  Daniel used his gift to untie or untangle mysterious visions so that the truth could be clearly revealed and understood.  Antichrist, on the other hand, will use his wisdom in the exact opposite way of Daniel: he will be able to so entangle the truth into so many knots with his words that no one will be able to understand the truth from his lies and what is right and good from his deceitful framing of all the narratives that he will present.  Antichrist’s goal in twisting the truth with his rhetoric is clearly displayed in Daniel 7:25 and Revelation chapter 13: he will present a narrative that we care clearly seeing today, that Christians are “intolerant” and essentially the bogeyman and that THEY are the source of all the problems.  We’re already increasingly seeing this – but all too soon it will lead to the most vicious and terrible wave of persecution in the history of the world as Antichrist begins his mission to murder every single believer on earth.  The last days are upon us and everyone who has the spirit that Daniel described in Daniel 12:10 can clearly see it.  Today we live in a world of “spin.”  And I submit that many “good people” are simply flat-out deceived politically and culturally be a tsunami of lies that have engulfed the world.  The spirit of antichrist is already here.

Christianity is slipping away in America, there is no question about it.  In 2012, 75% of Americans identified themselves as “Christian,” versus in 1990 – when that percentage was 86%. I submit that the decline of Christianity in America has a very great deal to do with “deception.”  It has to do with the fact that something watered down and perverted has been substituted for “Christianity” and more and more people are rejecting a “Christianity” that has NOTHING to do with Christ or His Word.  But think of it this way: given that 3 out of every 4 Americans still call themselves “Christian,” HOW IS IT that many of these same Americans now support homosexual marriage and abortion???  I defy anybody to explain to me how anybody could open up a Bible and say, “God approves of homosexual marriage.”  Just read Romans chapter one, if you don’t like Leviticus 18:26.  How can anybody read Psalm 139:13-16 (eg., “For You formed my inward parts; You wove me in my mother’s womb“) and explain to me how God has anything other than abject horror for the abortion mindset that has now consumed over 55 million innocent babies in America?

For the record, 58% of Americans support homosexual marriage.  And how can that be when 75% of Americans call themselves “Christians”???  When the Bible denounces homosexuality as an “abomination” (Lev 18:22) and a “detestable act” (Lev 20:13) and when the Bible says that homosexuality is the lowest moral point a culture can degenerate to resulting in the full wrath of God (Romans chapter one, especially 1:26-27)?

I survey the demise of Christianity in Western Civilization and particularly in America and I think of the words of King Theoden in Lord of the Rings as he surveyed the world where evil had nearly completely consumed what little good was left: “The days have gone down in the West behind the hills into shadow. How did it come to this?

How about this as moving toward an answer to that question: only 19% of CHURCHGOING CHRISTIANS even SAY they read the Bible every day. And 57%  only read their Bibles four times a year or less.  How about what a Gallup survey said: that only 22% of those calling themselves “Christians” believe the Bible is fully inspired by God Himself.

How about this?  “35% of “born-again Christians” do not read the Bible AT ALL.”  And “among those who say they read the Bible, the vast majority only read it during the one hour they attend church each Sunday morning.”

I completely agree with this statement from Ron Rhodes, President of Reasoning from the Scriptures Ministries:  “such statistics make it more than obvious why many Christians are easy prey for spiritual deception. The level of biblical illiteracy among Christians may be one reason why many believers hesitate to stand for Godly values on the public scene.”

The next two paragraphs of the same article:

“Recent studies by The Barna Group and the Gallup Organization conclude that any reasonable understanding of biblical facts and truths is seriously lacking among Americans. Today, basic Christian truths are virtually unknown to a majority in this nation.

“American Christians are biblically illiterate. Although most of them contend that the Bible contains truth and is worth knowing, and most of them argue that they know all of the relevant truths and principles, our research shows otherwise. And the trend line is frightening: the younger a person is, the less they understand about the Christian faith.” —Barna”

I want to begin by exploring that question: “How did it come to this?”  How is it that 75% of Americans say they are “Christian” even as a majority of Americans say, “I’m a Christian, and I believe that God smiles down every time a mother has her own baby ripped apart in her womb.”  “I’m a Christian, and I believe that God loves homosexuality.”  How is it that WE have voted for these things, and considered ourselves good people and even good CHRISTIANS as we did so???  How is it that we call ourselves “Christians” and blatantly ignore the blatant point of Romans chapter one and so many other Old and New Testament Passages???  Note: I pick these two topics because they ought to be OBVIOUS to anyone who reads  the Word of God; and if we can’t even understand the obvious, how can we understand anything at all???

Today, the Anglicans, the Episcopalians, the Lutherans, the Presbyterians, the Methodists, and numerous other denominations, have actively supported homosexual marriage as a union celebrated by God.  Many of these churches are celebrating homosexual unions and celebrate the fact that they have openly homosexual bishops.  And we just witnessed the new Catholic pope join them as he undermined Christians who would have the politically-incorrect gall to condemn gay marriage.

Deception, indeed.  It is all around you.  And statistically speaking, if both the people sitting next to you aren’t deceived, then YOU ARE.

Here’s a survey of Bible passages that I believe help to explain what has happened (in scriptural order):

  • The LORD saw how great the wickedness of the human race had become on the earth, and that every inclination of the thoughts of the human heart was only evil all the time. – Genesis 6:5
  • “Should you help the wicked and love those who hate the LORD? Because of this, wrath has gone out against you from the LORD” – 2 Chronicles 19:2
  • You love evil more than good, Falsehood more than speaking what is right. — Psalm 52:3
  • But he who sins against Me injures himself; all those who hate Me love death — Proverbs 8:36
  • A wise man’s heart directs him toward the right, but the foolish man’s heart directs him toward the left. — Ecclesiastes 10:2
  • Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; Who substitute darkness for light and light for darkness; Who substitute bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter! — Isaiah 5:20
  • For God’s wrath is being revealed from heaven against all the ungodliness and wickedness of those who in their wickedness suppress the truth – Romans 1:18
  • Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools – Romans 1:22
  • They exchanged the truth about God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator–who is forever praised. Amen. — Romans 1:25
  • In their case, the god of this world has blinded the minds of those who do not believe to keep them from seeing the light of the glorious gospel of the Messiah, who is the image of God. — 2 Corinthians 4:4
  • I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting the one who called you to live in the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel– which is really no gospel at all. Evidently some people are throwing you into confusion and are trying to pervert the gospel of Christ.  But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach a gospel other than the one we preached to you, let them be under God’s curse!  — Galatians 1:6-9
  • Such teachings come through hypocritical liars, whose consciences have been seared as with a hot iron — 1 Timothy 4:2
  • But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. — 2 Tim 3:1
  • They are the kind who worm their way into homes and gain control over gullible women, who are loaded down with sins and are swayed by all kinds of evil desires, always learning but never able to come to a knowledge of the truth. — 2 Tim 3:6-7
  • For the time will come when men will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. They will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths. — 2 Tim 4:3-4
  • “I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either one or the other!  So, because you are lukewarm–neither hot nor cold–I am about to spit you out of my mouth.  You say, ‘I am rich; I have acquired wealth and do not need a thing.’ But you do not realize that you are wretched, pitiful, poor, blind and naked.” — Rev 3:15-17

“How did it come to this?”  Let me explain.  Because the answer has EVERYTHING to do with understanding Bible PROPHECY and with having a LITERAL interpretation of the Word of God.

This terrible spiritual sickness of Christian thought began in the 5th century through the teaching of a brilliant theologians named Origen of Alexandria (A.D. 185 to circa 254) and Augustine, bishop of Hippo (354 – 430 AD).  These two thinkers introduced and systemized an “allegorical” view of the Bible.  See here (http://www.lastchanceministries.com/Origen.htm) for more.  Basically, these two men were looking at a world that no longer had a literal, physical, national Israel – which had been destroyed by Rome in 70 AD (just as Jesus literally prophesied in passages such as Matt 23:37-39 and 24:1-2, 34).  And that fact of a “missing Israel” warped their understanding.

There are so many Bible prophecies that center around a literal, national, Israel existing in the last days that I literally cannot list them all.  But consider Ezekiel chapter 37 – the prophecy of the dry bones that come to life prior to the last days war of God and Magog in Ezekiel 38-39.  Consider the numerous references to Israel in the Book of Revelation (ex. Rev 7:3-8; 11:1-2; chap 12). (See http://israelect.com/reference/WillieMartin/Israel_in_Revelation.htm for more).  And consider that the Messiah of ISRAEL in the Old Testament Messiah (See http://israelsmessiah.com/prophecy/messiah/Y%27SHUAH.htm).  The Old Testament Scriptures tell us that this Messiah would, for example, sit on the throne of King David of Israel in Jerusalem and rule with a rod of iron.  Why would Messiah sit on the throne of David in Jerusalem if Israel were no more???  What people was David king of???

You should begin to see Origen’s and Augustine’s dilemma: national Israel needed to exist for the Bible to be right, but national Israel had been wiped off the map and there was no sign on earth that it was coming back.  They could either a) read the Bible literally and believe in faith that God would one day regather Israel as His Word says or b) create an entirely new system of interpretation that turned the Bible into allegories/metaphors rather than literal truths.

Tragically, they chose the latter approach.  They exchanged the truth about God for a lie and worshiped and served the theology they created rather than the actual Word of God.  They allowed their human minds – partially due to their lack of faith and partially due to their intellectual arrogance – to triumph over what God prophetically foreordained would LITERALLY happen in the last days.  And in their error they replaced Israel with the Church (the allegorical approach known as “replacement theology”).

Allow me to present a champion of Amillennialist thought in the words of Covenant theologian Oswald T. Allis to describe premillennialsm:

“One of the most marked features of premillennialism in all its forms is the emphasis which it places on the literal interpretation of Scripture.  It is the insistent claims of its advocates that only when interpreted literally is the Bible interpreted truly”

As a premillennialist, I completely agree with Allis’ characterization.  Yes, that’s right; whatever you do, don’t be like those wicked premillennialists and actually try to interpret your Bible THE WAY GOD DELIVERED IT TO US.

What are the consequences of the Amillennialist “allegorical” approach to “understanding” the Bible.  Try this question from Pew: “Do many religions lead to God and eternal life?”  79% of Catholic Amillennialists and fully 83% of Protestant Amillennialists said YES.  Amazingly, amillennialist Catholics (79%) and amillennialist Mainline churches (83%) were the most likely of ALL respondents to abandon the orthodox Christian confession that only Jesus Christ gives eternal life.  And while their are many strong and staunch Christians who embrace amillennialist theology, once you embrace a hermeneutic approach that encourages highly allegorical interpretations of Scripture, you open the door wide to abandoning the doctrine of the deity of Christ, the substitutionary atonement and the bodily Resurrection.  All of these abandonments of genuine and orthodox Christianity have been done by the opponents of dispensationalism.  Whereas a literal interpretation of the Bible guarantees against such radical departures from the faith once for all delivered to the saints (Jude 3).

Allow me to provide a personal example: I am somewhat directionally impaired, certainly in comparison to my dad who has an incredible intuitive sense of direction.  Imagine my dad gives me directions to get me somewhere that I really need to get to.  He tells me which streets to take and which way to turn.  But I don’t take his directions “literally.”  Instead, I decide to “interpret” them in our classic Origen/Augustine allegorical approach.  Where will I end up???  NOT WHERE I’M SUPPOSED  TO END UP, THAT’S FOR SURE.

And so beginning in the fifth century, allegoricalism won, literalism (and TRUTH) lost.  Nothing needed to mean what it actually said; anything could merely be an allegory or a metaphor that stood for something else.  Except, that is, for God’s remnant who ALWAYS rightly believed that one day, God would fulfill His literal Word LITERALLY.  There were always Christians who joined Jews praying for Israel’s regathering.

God’s Word only makes sense when we let the Scriptures say what they literally clearly MEAN rather than whatever passes our fancy.  Want some examples?  Consider Zechariah 12:2-3 and 8-11:

“I am going to make Jerusalem a cup that sends all the surrounding peoples reeling. Judah will be besieged as well as Jerusalem.  On that day, when all the nations of the earth are gathered against her, I will make Jerusalem an immovable rock for all the nations. All who try to move it will injure themselves…  On that day the LORD will shield those who live in Jerusalem, so that the feeblest among them will be like David, and the house of David will be like God, like the angel of the LORD going before them.  On that day I will set out to destroy all the nations that attack Jerusalem.  And I will pour out on the house of David and the inhabitants of Jerusalem a spirit of grace and supplication. They will look on me, the one they have pierced, and they will mourn for him as one mourns for an only child, and grieve bitterly for him as one grieves for a firstborn son.  On that day the weeping in Jerusalem will be as great as the weeping of Hadad Rimmon in the plain of Megiddo.”

Also consider passages like “Come,” they say, “let us destroy them as a nation, so that Israel’s name is remembered no more.” – Psalm 83:4

How many nations have experienced more rabid hatred than Israel?  How many peoples have experienced the hatred of the Holocaust, where 6 million Jews (that’s the entire Jewish population of Israel TODAY) were murdered in a campaign to systematically wipe out an entire race?  How many cities on earth are the holiest site of the three major world religions?  How many cities are as torn by demands to be the capitol of two different peoples?  What other city today is more likely to be “a cup that sends all the surrounding peoples reeling” than Jerusalem???  When “Christians” assure us that “Israel” is just an allegory/metaphor for “the Church,” that ITSELF is hatred for Israel.

It is impossible for me to understand how somebody can read such passages and say that these prophecies aren’t being literally fulfilled in our time before our very eyes.  Just as it is impossible for me to understand how somebody can read about God being pierced and tell me that that wasn’t a literally-fulfilled prophecy of Messiah Jesus.

How about this one;” A NATION SHALL BE BORN IN A DAY.”  I read Isaiah 66:8 and all I can say is a miracle literally prophesied by God occurred on May 14, 1948.  I read Jeremiah 30:1-3 and Isaiah 43:5-7 which prophecy the regathering of Israel in the last days and I see literally fulfillment of God’s Word.  Most of all, I see the prophecy of the dry bones in Ezekiel 37:1-14 and I KNOW that God literally brought Israel to life from a state of death that had lasted for two thousand years.

What about this one: as the Book of Acts begins, and the disciples of Christ – soon to be His apostles – ask Jesus one last question before He ascends into heaven they ask:

 “Lord, are you at this time going to restore the kingdom to Israel?”  (Acts 1:6)

And I want you to carefully note here that Jesus most certainly does NOT say, “What are you talking about?  How have you missed the entire point of my Amillennialist teaching?!?!?”  Yes, ultimately the CLEAR LITERAL FACT OF SCRIPTURE is that God WILL restore the kingdom TO ISRAEL.  In fact, the entire MILLENNIUM is ALL ABOUT God fulfilling His promises to Israel.  Because He is a faithful God who fulfills His Word.

There are SO MANY prophesies just like these.  The Bible makes sense when it is allowed to simply speak for itself.  It becomes incomprehensible gibberish when it is defiled by man to say anything else.

Remember, there are two major views today: there is the amillenialist view, which is based on an allegorical interpretation of the Bible, and there is the premillenial view, which is based on a literal interpretation of Scripture.  There used to be another dominant view that has lost most of its credibility: it was called Postmillenialism – and it was also based on an allegorical approach.  According to Postmillenialism, the millennium was not a future state, but began to exist when Christ established the Church through His Twelve Apostles (i.e., the Book of Acts).  And according to Postmillenialism, the world was going to become better and better as the Church evangelized the world, until finally the world would be in a state of perfect Utopia.  And then – after the Church had made the world perfect – Jesus would come and usher in the eternal state.  Well, there were a few problems with that: the first was that it was human-centric rather than God-centric because it was not Jesus Christ saving the world for the Church, but the Church saving the world for Jesus Christ.  Do you see the problem?  The second problem was little things like the Civil War, WWI, WWII, the Cold War, etc.  You have to be a true ideologue to believe that the world is becoming better and better when in obvious fact it is clearly becoming worse and worse (as Premillennialists predicted would happen before the coming of the Antichrist and the Great Tribulation, for the record).

Too bad the Postmillenialists refused to read 2 Timothy 3:1-5 and understand it LITERALLY.

What’s the problem with Amillennialism?  As I described, it is basically the position formulated to explain a world where Israel did not exist (as the Bible said it had to in the last days).  And so the first Amillennialist interpreters assumed an allegorical approach to interpreting the Bible so that it did not have to mean what it said (and therefore couldn’t be wrong just because it wasn’t literally true).  With Israel out of the picture, the 1,000 Millennium in Revelation 20 was meaningless – because the purpose of the Millennium is for the Messiah of Israel to literally fulfill every prophecy given to Israel and the Jews.  For instance, there are prophecies that state that the Messiah of Israel, the Son of David, would rule and reign with a rod of iron on the throne of King David in Jerusalem.  There are prophecies that state that the entire world would worship the Messiah of Israel, and would come up to Jerusalem to do so.  There are prophecies that state that Israel would rebuild the Temple.  And there are MANY OTHER such prophecies.  But if there is no Israel, and Israel is merely an allegory representing the Church, well, those prophecies are merely allegories representing something else, too.  As is the Millennium itself.

You run into huge problems.  Beginning with the fact that all the things the Premillennialists said would happen (e.g., the literal rebirth of national Israel, the literal preparation for a last days Temple in Jerusalem, the rise of a unified Europe so that Antichrist could seize control, the rise of Russia as Gog and Magog, the rise of China as the kings of the East (as per Rev 16:12, Rev 9:13-16), as well as many other things, such as the rise of technology to make the mark of the beast (Rev 13:16-18) possible.  I mean, Amillennialists have been mocking literalist Premillennialists – particularly Charles Nelson Darby – for 150 years.  They don’t bother to struggle with the fact that all the stuff the man said would happen ACTUALLY HAPPENED.  Just as he said it would because he was just teaching what the Bible literally said would happen.

Here’s another example of how this terribly flawed allegorical approach leads astray: Read Isaiah 65:20: “Never again will there be in it an infant who lives but a few days, or an old man who does not live out his years; the one who dies at a hundred will be thought a mere child; the one who fails to reach a hundred will be considered accursed.”  What period does this refer to?

Let’s look at another problem with the denials of Amillennialism: the denial of the Millennium itself.

Edward J. Young is a widely respected Amillennialist, and takes the ridiculous position that Isaiah 65:20 describes the eternal heavenly state.  He has to do that, keep in mind, because he denies the literal 1,000 year Millennium reign of Christ on earth.  And in his well-known and influential commentary on Isaiah, he accordingly interprets “the one who fails to reach a hundred will be considered accursed” as meaning – and I quote – “Thus one of the blessings of the new age is that of longevity” (vol 3, p. 515).  But let me ask you a simple question: how old do you think you’ll be when you die in heaven???  This passage OBVIOUSLY does not refer to the eternal state, but rather to the Millennium.  The Book of Revelation mentions the Millennium [“Mille anum” = “thousand years”] SIX TIMES in Revelation 20:1-7. But Young cannot consider the Millennium at all because as an Amillennialist he has decided that all the passages in the Book of Revelation that refer to the thousand years of the Millennium are all “allegorical” and there IS no Millennium because there is no reason to have a Millennium because they have interpreted Israel and the eventual fulfillment of prophecies made to Israel out of the Bible.  So all that’s left is heaven.  And he is therefore forced to take an absurd conclusion.  The sad fact of the matter is that the Bible doesn’t drive the Amillennialist’s theology: his Amillennialist theology drives his world rather than what the Bible teaches.

Let me point out again just how incredibly foolish this passage becomes in the words of another top Amillennialist scholar J.G. Voss describing his Amillennialism:

“Amillennialism is that view of the last things which holds   that the Bible does not predict a ‘Millennium’ or period of worldwide peace   and righteousness on this earth before the end of the world.  Amillennialism   teaches that there will be a parallel and contemporaneous development of good   and evil — God’s kingdom and Satan’s kingdom — in this world, which will    continue until the second coming of Christ. At the second coming of Christ the   resurrection and judgment will take place, followed by the eternal order of   things — the absolute, perfect Kingdom of God, in which there will be no sin, suffering nor death.”

But again, THERE IS DEATH in Isaiah 65:20.  WHERE DOES THIS PASSAGE FIT INTO THE WORLD?  There is only ONE possible time period that makes any sense whatsoever: the Millennium.  But the Amillennialist denies the Millennium as any kind of literal time period (of one thousand years as the Bible tells us SIX TIMES in just ONE chapter) and is therefore reduced to idiocy simply because he refuses to believe the clear LITERAL truth of Scripture.

But the worst thing of ALL about Amillennialism – as I believe I have shown – is that the same hermeneutic that is used to justify the same theology that allows you to replace Israel with the Church allows you to replace marriage with homosexuality and precious babies with abortion.  Yes, these things are an abomination if you read your Bible literally.  So more and more “Christians” are saying, “Well, let’s just not read it literally then.”  That way we can have all the benefits of Christianity and all the benefits of secular humanism all at the same time.

Let’s make Christianity compatible with what the secular humanists and the atheists teach.  That way we won’t have any culture wars, you see.

Dinish D’Souza in his great book, “What’s So Great About Christianity” makes this point when he writes, “Unfortunately the central themes of some of the liberal churches have become indistinguishable from those of the American Civil Liberties Union, the National Organization for Women, and the homosexual rights movement.  Why listen to Episcopal bishop John Shelby Spong drone on when you can get the same message and much more interesting visuals at San Francisco’s gay pride parade?  The traditional churches, not the liberal churches, are growing in America.” [pg. 4]

D’Souza in his previous paragraphs had documented all the statistics to prove that “fundamentalist” denominations and churches were EXPLODING not only in America but all over the world while mainline liberal denominations were shrinking and dying away.

THAT’S why “Christians” call themselves “Christian” while supporting one thing the Bible decries as evil after another.  And THAT is why fewer and fewer people are identifying themselves as “Christian” in the first place, as the mainline churches that still wield vast institutional influence in both wealth and media coverage die out while the Christianity they used to teach devolves into political correctness and secular humanism.  And the reason that the actual New Testament Christianity that takes the Word of God seriously is exploding around the world is because the Spirit of God is still at work in these last days just before the rapture and the beast of Revelation.

Check out the membership of the wicked Jesus Seminar: Robert Funk is Disciples of Christ – one of ‘the Seven Sisters” of mainline Protestant liberalism.  John Dominic Crossan is a Catholic.  Marcus Borg is an Anglican.  You go down the list of members and without fail you will find mainline liberal denominations that embrace allegorical Amillennialism or Postmillennialism and despise literalist Premillennialism as its members.  These are people who allegorized the Bible in order to accommodate the Word of God to their own massive unbelief – which as I’ve described was how allegoricalism began in the first place.

What has happened is that – without fail – the allegorical non-literal denominations have allowed, enabled and in fact ENCOURAGED their members to deny every key doctrine of the Christian faith.

Christians should be under the Bible as the Word of God to us.  Who is Jesus?  He is who the Bible says He is.  It is as simple as the song: “Jesus loves me, this I know, FOR THE BIBLE TELLS ME SO.”  And it is a result of abandoning the Bible as the literal Word of God that these denominations have increasingly abandoned the Christian faith altogether.

There’s a great metaphor to end on: the violin that was played as the Titanic sank just went for auction for the price of $1.5 million.  The last song played as the ship plunged into its icy grave was “Nearer My God To Thee.”  We can read this and understand that just as there are no atheists in foxholes, THERE ARE NO ATHEISTS ON SINKING SHIPS.  But look at it this way: the Titanic is an appalling example of stunning human arrogance and ignorance and the resulting refusal to understand clear literal warnings of impending doom.  Here’s a stat: they had 20 lifeboats for 1,178 people but they had 2,435 passengers and 892 crew (for a total of  3,327 souls).  Do the math. And as those heedless people perished after putting their trust in fools, they blithely played “Nearer My God To Thee.”  And what I’m saying is that THAT is what the Church is largely like today and it is what most Christians are like today.  The last days are upon us and they couldn’t be more ignorant or more deceived.  DON’T BE LIKE THAT.

I urge you to read the Bible.  And I urge you to simply let the Bible be the Word of God and allow it to speak to you as it was written to speak to you.