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A Challenge to Futurists

Discussion in 'Controversial Christian Theology' started by Ozarkpreterist, Jun 23, 2002.

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  1. Subject: Noah and the traditions of men.

    It is the year 2002 and Noah lives in the United States.

    The Lord speaks to Noah and says: "In one year I am going to make it rain and cover the whole earth with water until all is destroyed.

    But I want you to save the righteous people and two of every kind of living thing on the earth. Therefore, I am commanding you to build an Ark."

    In a flash of lightning, God delivered the specifications for an Ark.

    Fearful and trembling, Noah took the plans and agreed to build the Ark. "Remember," said the Lord, "You must complete the Ark and bring everything aboard in one year."

    Exactly one year later, a fierce storm cloud covered the earth and all the seas of the earth went into a tumult. The Lord saw Noah sitting in his front yard weeping.

    "Noah." He shouted, "Where is the Ark?" "Lord please forgive me!" cried Noah. "I did my best but there were big problems. First, I had to get a permit to believe the words you have said, from the leaders of Church, to see if it complies with what is written in their creeds and the traditional teaching of men before they would let me begin construction on your plans.

    Then I got into a fight with the members of the Church because they said, to God a day or a year, is as a thousand years to the Lord. So they would not let me hire an engineering to firm and redraw the plans.

    Then my Christian neighbor objected, claiming believing your words was heresies and violating zoning ordinances so they would not let me start building the Ark in my front yard, so I had to get a variance from the city planning commission.

    I had problems getting enough wood for the Ark, because there was a ban on cutting trees to protect the Spotted Owl. I finally convinced the U.S. Forest Service that I needed the wood to save the owls. However, the leader of Church wonÂ’t let me catch any owls because they said a year, or soon, does not mean a year, or soon, in their doctrines. So. no owls.

    The Christian carpenters formed a union and went out on strike. I had to negotiate a settlement with the National Labor Relations Board. Now I have 16 newly saved carpenters who trust your words and not the ideas of men, on the Ark, but still no owls.

    When I started rounding up the other animals, I got sued by the leaders of the Church groups because they said, at hand does not mean at hand in their doctrines. They objected to me taking any kind of animals aboard.

    Just when I got the suit dismissed, the Church leaders notified me that I could not complete the Ark without filing an environmental impact statement on the proposed of believing your words about the flood. They didn't take very kindly to the idea that I did not, believe the ideas and traditional of men, over the Creator of the universe.

    Then IRS has seized all my assets, claiming that I'm building the Ark in preparation to flee the country to avoid paying taxes. I just got a notice from the State that I owe some kind of user tax and failed to register the Ark as a recreational water craft.

    Finally the Church got the courts to issue an injunction against further construction of the Ark, saying God does really mean this generation, but a generation in the far future. I really don't think I can finish the Ark for another 5 or 6 years!" Noah wailed.

    The sky began to clear, the sun began to shine and the seas began to calm. A rainbow arched across the sky. Noah looked up hopefully. "You mean you are going to destroy the earth, Lord?"

    "No," said the Lord. "You mean you are not going to show the word you keep your words?" "No," said the Lord sadly. "The Church has already done that." :eek:
  2. verizon1

    verizon1 New Member

    Hi all Let me first start by saying that I came here to show that all of Christianity is fails. The futurist view has failed to show us, why we should not believe Jesus is just another false prophet with the Bible why. While on the other hand the preterist view does not make Jesus appear to be a false prophet and is more consistent to what you have pointed out to me in your, early church witting and that which is written in your scripture. My next question to you would be this then. How did the individuals in the first century comprehend the resurrection if the return of Jesus is in the past? Was there a literal resurrection of the dead?
    I appreciate your time.
  3. Hi verizon1 we appreciater your time, for looking into these thing with an open heart to know the truth.  Before anyone answers you question on how the first century people understood the resurrection let me point out to you their understanding of biblical death.  To be dead, as used in the Bible, can mean different things. It can mean to be dead physically; it can mean to be dead spiritually; or it can have yet another meaning. It is the last two interpretation of `the death' that will be our subject of study. However it takes some spiritual maturity to be able to answer that challenge. Let's look at a passage of Scripture that gives us a feeling for this third definition of death.

    Then He said to me, "Son of man, these bones are the whole house of Israel. They indeed say, `Our bones are dry, our hope is lost, and we ourselves are cut off!' Therefore prophesy and say to them, `Thus says the Lord GOD: "Behold, O My people, I will open your graves and cause you to come up from your graves, and bring you into the land of Israel. Then you shall know that I am the LORD, when I have opened your graves. I will put My Spirit in you, and you shall live, and I will place you in your own land. Then you shall know that I, the LORD, have spoken it and performed it," says the LORD.'" (Ezekiel 37:11-14)

    During the Babylonian captivity Israel was cut off from her homeland. They spent seventy years in another country. (Here's the point.) Israel was cut off from the promised land was, in the sight of God, as dead! All these Jews were alive physically, but as the Lord showed Ezekiel they were a valley of dry bones in a grave nationally.

    God in restoring His people to their own land uses the figure of graves opening and His people coming forth in national resurrection. Read again the passage form Ezekiel.  If you now understand this third meaning of death (national Jews cut off from the promised land), then you possess a valuable in understand the resurrection of the dead. What God did for Israel national, He later did for Iisael spiritually.

    The New Testament writers likened life under the Old Covenant to death, because all those under the Law were under the curse, Gal. 3:10f. Paul called the Old Testament the "ministration of death" because all it did was condemn; it could not justify, Romans 8:1-3. He spoke of his struggles under the Old Covenant; he spoke of his past death under it, and lamented "Who shall deliver me from the body of this death?" Romans 7:9-24.

    Notice what Paul described as death In chapter 7. "I was alive without the law once: but when the commandment came, sin revived, and I died. And the commandment, which was ordained to life, I found to be unto death. For sin taking occasion by the commandment, deceived me, and by it slew me" vs. 9-11.

    What death is Paul describing here? Is it biological death of his physical body? Patently not. Yet he said he had died. What law was Paul describing so graphically in terms of sin and death? What law gave sin such a hold on Paul? It was the law that said "thou shalt not covet" vs. 7--the Old Covenant of Israel. This is the law that Paul labored under and that created the "body of this death" Rom. 7:24 and from which Paul longed for full deliverance, cf. Phil. 3:1-15.

    In direct contrast to the "law of the Spirit of life in Christ," the Old Law could not deliver from the "law of sin and death," Rom. 8:1-3. As just seen in chapters 5-7 of Romans the Law actually exacerbated the cognizance of the "law of sin and death." As Paul expressed in Galatians 3:10 "For as many as are of the works of the Law are under the curse; for it is written, Cursed is everyone who does not continue in all things which are written in the book of the Law to do them."

    Thus, the Old Law is seen to be the strength of sin.

    The New Testament believers were dying to the Old Law as they were baptized into Christ, Romans 6-7. The Law itself was not dead- -they were dying to the Law; "You have become dead to the law by the body of Christ" Rom. 7:4; "Christ is the end of the law to those who believe," Rom. 10:4. But the Law would pass when fulfilled and the Hebrew writer says it was at that time growing old and was ready to vanish away, Hebrews 8:13.

    Resurrection is deliverance from sin; sin-death; read Ephesians 2:1. This happens by faith in response to the gospel of Jesus Christ. Christ has "abolished death and brought life and immortality to light through the gospel" 2 Tim. 1:10. Those who would know the life that will never end, John 8:51, must enter the power of Jesus' death and resurrection to enjoy the salvation/resurrection purchased by Him.

    Jesus is the resurrection and the life. Jesus' death and resurrection was the power for the final removal of that law that brought death, Eph. 2. But that Old Law could not fully pass until it was all fulfilled, Matthew 5:17-18; and until the New Covenant law of life in Christ was completely established, Gal. 3:21-29. This meant that there was a time of transition between the Old Law and the New; a time when those coming out from that Old Law were coming into life--thus they were being raised into resurrection life as firstfruits of the coming perfection in Christ.

    Our point is that when that Old Covenant of Death was completely taken away this is called the resurrection! This is what Paul said in 1 Corinthians 15:54-56. The resurrection would be when the Old Testament was fulfilled, vs. 54; it would be when "the law," which was "the strength of sin," was removed, vs. 56. 

    The modern concept of a physical resurrection of human bodies is not consistent with scripture. It makes physical death the focus of God's threat in Eden, yet scripture denies this. The modern view denies the relationship of the Old Covenant to death and life-- spiritual life. It fails to take into consideration that man stands before God in relationship to Covenant. To live under a Ministration of Death was to be a body of death, Rom. 7:24; 8:8-10. To be delivered from that ministration of death was to be resurrected. This is the Biblical concept of resurrection.

    To have this life one must be in Christ through baptism for this is where one is joined to Christ's death and resurrection.

    While our study will examine several different verses this work will concentrate on a pivotal text in the resurrection discussion-John 5:24-29. 

    "Most assuredly, I say to you , he who hears My word and believes in Him who sent Me has everlasting life, and shall not come into judgment, but has passed from death unto life. Most assuredly, I say to you, the hour is coming, and now is, when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of god; and those who hear will live. For as the Father has life in Himself, so He has granted the Son to have life in Himself, and has given Him authority to execute judgment also, because He is the Son of Man. Marvel not at this; for the hour is coming in which all who are in the graves will he His voice and come forth-- those who have done good to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil, to the resurrection of condemnation." [NKJV] 

    This discourse forms the foundation for the "two resurrection" idea. Most commentators insist that in verses 24-25 Jesus spoke of a spiritual resurrection available to the believer today and then in verses 28-29 he spoke of a yet future physical resurrection.

    Our purpose is to examine the specific context of John 5 and examine Jesus' prediction of the coming consummative hour in the light of 1 John 2 and Revelation. We will study the Hope of Israel and the relationship of the fulfillment and passing of the Old Testament to resurrection. We will note the Old Testament foundation for Jesus' prediction in John 5. The constituent elements of resurrection will be noted in light of New Testament teaching that the resurrection had already begun but was not consummated! Several passages that tell when the resurrection would occur will be studied. Finally, we will explore some of the contradictions in the traditional views of John 5, and take note of some objections to the views that we will set forth.

    We have purposely kept the number of footnotes and references to a minimum. While such notes could be copiously provided we have decided to observe the "k-i-s-s" principle as much as possible. For those wishing such references please see Max R. King's massive volume "The Cross and the Parousia."
  4. Hoonbaba

    Hoonbaba Catholic Preterist


    GREAT POST!!  THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR SHARING!!!!  Honestly I never fully understood the 'resurrection' as thoroughly as you explained it =)

    By the way, would you mind if I shared your post with others?  Also, are there any particular books that are more indepth on the same topic?

    God bless!!

  5. Hi Hoonbaba :wave:   Max King has done a great jod on this subject as will in his book (The Cross and the Parousia of Christ)  I am shore there are more out there.  I dont mind you using anything from any of my post either.  Glad to be of some help brother.
  6. Hoonbaba

    Hoonbaba Catholic Preterist

    Hi guys,

    I just read the entire discussion and my gosh...it's ridiculously long!! 

    Verizon1 - you might want to use an online bible sight like http://www.biblegateway.com

    It saves a lot of time from having to look up all the verses by hand. :)

    Manifestation*AD70 - I had NO idea Acts 6:13-14 said what it says!! :D That's probably (in my opinion) the most profound preterist statement I've come across, since it clearly spells out the passing of the old covenant ! :)

    Someone was asking about 'heaven and earth'.  So I thought I'd share a bit about the passing away of heaven and earth (2 Pet 3:10).  The phrase 'heaven and earth' didn't always refer to the literal comos.  For example: 

    Is 1:2 (KJV) uses the phrase: "Hear, O heavens, and give ear, O earth: for the LORD hath spoken, I have nourished and brought up children, and they have rebelled against me.

    Based on context, God is speaking to Israel.  Deut 32:1 (KJV) uses that idiom in a similar manner:

    Give ear, O ye heavens, and I will speak; and hear, O earth, the words of my mouth.

    It's clear, based on context, that it's not referring to a literal heaven and earth.

    Lev 26:19 (KJV) uses that phrase too, but pay attention to the word 'your':

    "And I will break the pride of your power; and I will make your heaven as iron, and your earth as brass:" (Lev 26:19)

    So now we know that 'heaven and earth' did not always refer to the physical heaven and earth, since the author says, 'your heaven'.  It must mean something else.

    If we look in Isaiah 13:13 (KJV) it says:

    "Therefore I will shake the heavens, and the earth shall remove out of her place, in the wrath of the LORD of hosts, and in the day of his fierce anger." (Is 13:13)

    As the others stated earlier, Isaiah 13 (i.e. the fall of Babylon) was fufilled in 539 BC.  So I doubt Isaiah 13:13's use of heaven and earth was a literal heaven and earth in light of the other passages.  I think we can say the same about 2 Sam 22:8, Judges 5:4 and Psalm 68:8

    Isaiah 51:16 (KJV) says the following:

    "But I am the LORD thy God, that divided the sea, whose waves roared: The LORD of hosts is his name. And I have put my words in thy mouth, and I have covered thee in the shadow of mine hand, that I may plant the heavens, and lay the foundations of the earth, and say unto Zion, Thou art my people." (Is 51:16)

    Based on what we see in red, we see that God is referring to when he delivered the Hebrews out of Egypt and gave them the ten commandments.  So what is the heavens and earth in this text?  Clearly it isn't the physical world, but rather the old covenant system/government.  (I think I might be a bit off somewhere, so someone please feel free to correct me).

    So when we read statements like Isaiah 34:3-5, Isaiah 66:22 and it makes sense to say that the old covenant would pass away and a new covenant would be established.  And that's exactly what the NT authors claimed:

    Matt 5:18 and it's surrounding context (Matt 5:17-20) speak of the law.  Jesus also said that 'heaven and earth' would pass away (Matt 24:25) in the lifetime of the apostles (Matt 24:34). 

    Also there's a strong connection between 2 Peter 3 and Heb 12:26-28.  If we understand heaven and earth as 'dispensation' or 'government', in these verses, the passages appear to be speaking of a passing of the old covenant and the establishment of the new covenant. 

    Another thing to note is that 2 Peter 3:10 uses the word 'elements' which in greek is 'stoicheion'.  When we compare scripture with scripture, we see that in every use of this word it means, 'principles, rudiments' as in the old covenant laws.  The word appears only 7 times in the NT:

    Gal 4:3 - Even so we, when we were children, were in bondage under the elements of the world:

    Gal 4:9 - But now that you know God--or rather are known by God--how is it that you are turning back to those weak and miserable principles? Do you wish to be enslaved by them all over again?

    Col 2:8 - See to it that no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy, which depends on human tradition and the basic principles of this world rather than on Christ.

    Col 2:20 - Since you died with Christ to the basic principles of this world, why, as though you still belonged to it, do you submit to its rules:

    Heb 5:12 - In fact, though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you the elementary truths of God's word all over again. You need milk, not solid food!

    2 Pet 3:10 - But the day of the Lord will come like a thief. The heavens will disappear with a roar; the elements will be destroyed by fire, and the earth and everything in it will be laid bare

    2 Pet 3:12 - as you look forward to the day of God and speed its coming. That day will bring about the destruction of the heavens by fire, and the elements will melt in the heat.

    So based on all this logic, we can conclude that 2 Peter 3:7-10, Isaiah 66:22, and Rev 21:1 fit together in that the old covenant (when the NT was being written) was passing and the new covenant wasn't fully established. (Heb 10:9, Heb 8:13, 2 Cor 3:6-12, Gal 4:21-31) But since we believe Jesus came in A.D. 70 to fulfill Matt 24:3-30, the fact remains:  Biblical Judaism doesn't exist anymore.

    Phew!  This took a while to do =)

    Anyway I hope this helps clear up the 'heaven and earth' confusion! 

    Honestly I wish the Jews didn't have so many idiomatic phrases, otherwise we wouldn't have to go through all this stuff ;)

  7. davo

    davo Member

    Hey Jason, with reference to Isa 51:16, verse 13 is also very important -'Young's Literal Interpretation' brings out the verbal tense of the action of creating in the present tense -an action in the process of occuring:

    Isaiah 51:13 And thou dost forget Jehovah thy maker, Who is stretching out the heavens,...

    This backs up further what you are saying in that this "creation language" is idiomatic of the nation of Israel under the Old Covenant -not this physical world.

  8. davo

    davo Member

    G'day verizon1 :wave:

    Although the Sadducees rejected the notion of a resurrection, their concept of it was however the same as that of their fellow Pharisees -a physical event, hence their "literalistic" moralistic question in Lk 20:27-36. This was in keeping with the common though misguided expectation of most in Israel in that day [and in kind with many futurists today] -they were expecting a literal conquering king on a literal majestic throne, over their fleshly literal kingdom -they were waiting for their Messiah to come and literally route the Romans. The trouble was though, when Jesus came into Jerusalem, instead of turning right and plundering the Roman fortress Antonia, he turned left, went straight to the Temple and turned IT upside down. [how to win friends and influence people :) ]

    The Jewish leadership had one idea about resurrection [physical/fleshly] -the inspired Paul however had another. Paul declared that he, like his fellow country-men believed in "the resurrection of the dead." [with the obvious exception of the Sadducees]

     Acts 24:15, 21 (NKJV) 14But this I confess to you, that according to the Way which they call a sect, so I worship the God of my fathers, believing all things which are written in the Law and in the Prophets. 15I have hope in God, which they themselves also accept, that there will be a resurrection of the dead, both of the just and the unjust.
    21unless it is for this one statement which I cried out, standing among them, "Concerning the resurrection of the dead I am being judged by you this day."

    Paul's concept of the resurrection however WAS NOT that of a physical nature [that's why he was opposed at every turn], it was spiritual and literal -it was covenantal. The popular notion of a grave popping earth shattering physical resurrection is debunked when you consider Paul's handling of a false teaching that was causing some to "leave the faith" in their day.

    2Tim 2:17-18 And their message will spread like cancer. Hymenaeus and Philetus are of this sort, 18who have strayed concerning the truth, saying that the resurrection is already past; and they overthrow the faith of some.

    2Thess 2:2 not to be soon shaken in mind or troubled, either by spirit or by word or by letter, as if from us, as though the day of Christ had come.

    If the 1st century church expected Christ's Parousia to be a grave splitting, time ending, history-terminating event, as many today await and think, then how was it possible for some to be deceived? All someone had to do was look outside and ask -"what's changed?" -physically, nothing! In other words -if the resurrection [which according to Scripture is initiated by Christ's return] was to be a "physical event" it would have been self evident -everything "physically" would have been changed. IT WAS NOT.

    Paul doesn't challenge Hymenaeus and Philetus' concept or belief as to the 'nature' of the Parousia [as they had been Christian] -just their timing. Hymenaeus and Philetus were causing trouble, and like all of Paul's opposition they were Judaisers [this seems a reasonable assumption -as opposed to being Gnostics- based on all Paul's constant writings against "going back" -to Judaism]. If Hymenaeus and Philetus had been correct, then "the Law" would have been a requirement of faith as it was still being practiced, [even though it was powerless to bring saving change] -which goes against all Paul's teaching on the sufficiency of grace alone. The Law [old covenant] as typified in the Temple and priesthood etc had to be destroyed as a "sign" that the end of the age Mt 24:3 had come.

    The NT expectation of the Resurrection was not of a "fleshly" nature.

  9. Hoonbaba

    Hoonbaba Catholic Preterist

    Hi Davo,

    Thanks for sharing!  I looked up Young's and apparently the phrase 'stretching the heavens' appears other times as well :

    Job 9:8, Ps 104:2, Is 40:22, Is 42:5, Is 44:24.  :)

    God bless!

  10. jenlu

    jenlu Member

    Great post Mani...very concise and understandable...keep it up...
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