There is a major misinterpretation in evangelical eschatology regarding the timeline of end-of-age periods and, therefore, the rapture. Moreover, this major misinterpretation and trying to make the error fit with other scripture has lead to error on error, scriptural omissions which won't fit with the erroneous assumptions, and, therefore, results in a total misunderstanding of ending beliefs that upon close examination are absolutely contradictory to scripture. It is hard to believe that such heresy has crept into the hearts and minds of God's very elect and at this point you probably do not believe it, but remember what Jesus said and read on, you will find the evidence scripturally irrefutable.
The errors begin with the teaching of dispensationalism that became popular in the 19th Century and has become pervasive in evangelical churches. It postulates an elegant, non-biblical theory that God's history of dealings with man is characterized by a series of chronologically successive "dispensations," that are chronologically evolutionary in character and progressive in revelation.
John Darby (1800-1882), the main postulator of "dispensationalism," was a Plymouth Brethren minister. While at Trinity College in Dublin (1819), Darby came to believe, [and rightly so, but in a different period], in a future salvation and restoration of national Israel. Based on his study of Isaiah 32, Darby concluded, convolutedly, that Israel, in a future dispensation, would enjoy earthly blessings that were different from the heavenly blessings experienced by the church.
He thus heretically saw a clear distinction between Israel and the church, so much so that present day dispensationalism totally disregards and negates important scriptural passages and revelations regarding end-of-age events. For instance, Jesus' mini-apocalypse of Mark 13, Matthew 24 and Luke 21, which gives the Church a condensed, chronological, order of end-of-age events, is totally disregarded by postulating that it is applicable only to Israel and not the Church. Dispensationalist are, therefore, in essence saying and preaching, "Don't believe what you read!" Moreover, the dispensationalist themselves are seemingly ignorant of, or, are rationalizing away, Romans 9-11 and Ephesians 2, where Paul goes to great length to explain the grafting in of the gentiles to the Jews.
Darby also came to believe, contrary to scripture, in an "any moment" rapture of the church that was followed by Daniel's Seventieth Week in which Israel would once again take center stage in God's plan [as in the millennial reign of Christ on earth following the end-of-age events].
To proclaim that the church is subject to rapture at any moment is totally contrary to scripture. Daniel 9:27 and 12:11 as well as the mini-apocalypse, as described by Jesus and recorded at Mark 13, Matthew 24 and Luke 21, each give numerous congruous events that lead up to the rapture, and each of the New Testament citings contain ample warnings from Jesus himself to: "Watch out that no one deceives you!" (Mark 13:5, Matt 24:4 & Luke 21:8) Yet, most of evangelicum is in fact deceived.
Scripturally, the rapture occurs after the abomination of desolation which occurs at the end of the Seven Year Covenant, which covenant [peace treaty] begins end-of-age events. Darby erroneously termed the Seven Year Covenant Period the Tribulation Period and positioned the 3.5 year Tribulation Period, which scripturally follows the Covenant Period, into the last 3.5 years of the Covenant Period in order to make it comply with the common erroneous assumption that Daniel's 70th Week (Dan 9:24) and the Covenant Period (Dan 9:27) are the exact same period, which if they were, would make Dan 8:13 & 14 non-sensical as well as having the the three tellings of the rapture in Revelation (Rev 7:9, 14:14, 19:1) coming before the rapture of the firstfruits as described in Revelation 7:1-8, Rev 12:5-6 and Rev 14:1-5.
The error of dispensationalism and "pre-trib" interpretation is punctuated by the declaration of Paul, an exclusive missionary to "the Christian Church," in his letter to the Church at Thessalonica at 2 Thess 2:1-6:
In other words, the rapture will not occur until after the abomination of desolation, just as recorded by Mark 13:14 and Matthew 24:15 and similarly alluded to by Luke 21:20-23 in quoting Jesus. What could be clearer? However, dispensationalist proclaim that these New Testament scriptures are only applicable to Israel. However, I challenge you to read it and see if the application is not universal and see that the church is indeed not excluded. After all, think, "How many raptures are there?" And remember, biblically: there is a "7-year Covenant," not 7 years of tribulation! The Tribulation Period is 3.5 years(Rev 11:2-3, 12:6&14, 13:5) and follows the Seven Year Covenat.
Moreover, if, as dispensationalist believe, the rapture occurs prior to, or separate from, the events of the mini-apocalypse as recapitulated in the gospels, and prior to the Seven Year Peace Treaty of Daniel 9:27 they are, without realizing it, in contradiction to the chronology of Revelation in that they are postulating a rapture of the Church recorded at Revelation 7:9, at Rev 12:10-12 & 14:14 before the rapture of the "first fruits" as recorded between Revelation 7:8 & 9 and at Revelation 14.
As per the Internet: Darby saw seven dispensations or Covenants: The Covenants are: "Edenic Covenant [Dispensation of Innocence]; Adamic Covenant [Dispensation of Conscience]; Abrahamic Covenant [Dispensation of Promise]; Noahic Covenant [Dispensation of Human Government]; Mosaic Covenant [Dispensation of Law]; Davidic Covenant [Dispensation of Grace]; Davidic Kingdom [Dispensation of the NEW COVENANT or Millennial]. By his own testimony, Darby says his dispensational theology was fully formed by 1833.
Darby's new theology became popular in the United States after it was picked upon by Cyrus Scofield (1843-1921). Scofield was a scoundrel, forger, abandoner of his wife and 2 daughters, heavy drinker, Congregationalist minister and annotator of the Scofield Reference Bible, a widely circulated annotated study bible published by Oxford Press around 1917. This reference Bible became the greatest influence in the spread of dispensationalism and the "pre-tribulation rapture interpretation."
The Scofield Reference Bible became the leading Bible used by independent Evangelicals and Fundamentalists in the U.S. for the next sixty years. Evangelist and Bible teacher, Lewis Sperry Chafer (1871-1952), who was strongly influenced by C.I. Scofield, founded Dallas Theological Seminary in 1924, which has become the flagship of Dispensationalism in America. More recently, the Baptist Bible Seminary in Clark Summit, Pennsylvania (USA), has become another center of dispensationalism.
Unfortunately, dispensationalism has come to dominate the American Evangelical scene, especially among nondenominational Bible churches. Many Baptists, and most Pentecostal and Charismatic groups accept dispensationalism, while, so called, mainline Protestants generally continue to reject dispensationalism.
REFUTING THE ERRORS OF DISPENSATIONALISM
Dispensationalism is an elegant, seemingly enlightening, theory that has become engrained in the hierarchy of the evangelical churches. The result of which is the teaching of erroneous interpretations to the "congregation," who accept it as gospel.
S.J. Mounce, ThM, MCE, writing for the membership of the Assemblies of the Lord Jesus Christ wrote his "Errors in Support of Dispensationalism" in their official organ, the "Apostolic Witness" in the August 1992 edition, the preamble of which follows is presented for your critique:
As Marvin Byers, author of numerous books on eschatology points out in "Yasser Arafat:" The concept that God is dealing with Israel in one way and the Gentile Church in another is a serious contradiction of Scripture. In God's eyes there is no such thing as a "Gentile Church!" In Ephesians 2:11-22, the Apostle Paul makes it very clear that Christ's work on the cross made two peoples into one people and into one Church or "holy temple." Paul declares that in Christ, Gentile Believers have become true "citizens" of Israel (Eph 2:12,19).
For further refutation of dispensationalism see: Romans 2:28-29; Romans 9-11, Galatians 3:28; Galatians 4:1,, 5:1, 6-7, v26, v31.
NOTE: Regarding this present dissertation, it is not the author's purpose to exhaustively argue the contrasts of dispensationalism with scripture, which are deep, but to put the problem and its history in context and then focus on the proper interpretation of end-of-age prophesy and grammatically-historically and/or historically-critically, present its correct interpretation.
The problem with pre-trib rapture theory is three fold: One, the assumption that Daniel's 70th Week of Dan 9:24 and the Seven Year Covenant of Dan 9:27 are the same. Two, the misplacement of the scriptural 3.5 year Tribulation Period into the Seven Year Covenant Period. Three, The interpreter not having enough familiarity with Revelation to hermeneutically know without a doubt that such a conjecture would be totally anti-scriptural. For it would have the four accounts of the rapture of the Church in Revelation (Rev 7:9,12:11, 14:14, 19:1) preceding the rapture of the firstfruits (Rev 7:1-8, 12:4-5, 14:1-2).
Scripturally, the rapture comes 45 days after the beginning of the Tribulation Period (Daniel 12:11-12). However, the period that pre-tribulation theorist wrongly refer to as the 7-years of Tribulation, e.g., The Seven Year Covenant, is nowhere in the bible referred to as "7-years of Tribulation", or anything similar. The error stems from erroneous interpretations by John Darby (1800-1882) a Plymouth Brethren, Irishman preacher with a radical eschatology that Cyrus Schofield picked up on for his Scofield Reference Bible annotations and made popular. Cyrus Scofield (1843-1921), was a scoundrel, forger, abandoner of his wife and 2 daughters, heavy drinker, Congregationalist minister and annotator of the Scofield Reference Bible, a widely circulated annotated study bible published by Oxford Press around 1917.
Biblically, there are only two 7-year periods prophesied about as having anything to do with the end of time. One is the Seven Year Covenant described by Daniel 9:27, An Islamic/Israeli/Jerusalem/International Treaty; A Peace Treaty yet to be agreed upon that has dominated Mideast news and politics since Israel became a nation again in 1948. The other is "Daniel's 70th Week" of Daniel 9:24.
Sadly, there are a lot of blind leaders of the blind about, proclaiming things taught to them that they have yet to critically come to understand from scripture and logic itself. Many evangelical church members, maybe most, and some preachers have yet to even understand the repetition-and-enlargement format of Revelation and how metaphoric bowls, trumpets, woes, etc., are used as sequencers to maintain relative sequencing of events from repetition to enlargement.
The time of the end begins with the Seven Year Covenant of Dan 9:27 that consists of three events: The confirmation of the covenant at the beginning, the abolition of restored Jewish sacrifice and offering at the midpoint, and the abomination of desolation at its end. On the other hand, Daniel's 70th Week (Dan 9:24) ENDS at the end of this age, "read its summary carefully!" It, therefore, begins 7 years earlier, which takes us from the ending at the end of the age, back across the 3.5 years of Great Tribulation or Day of The LORD or Time of Wrath to the MIDPOINT of the Seven Year Covenant when sacrifice and offering is abolished (Dan 9:27) as the point of beginning. This is hermaneutically synchronos with Daniel 8:13-14 which begins at the same beginning point and lasts for 2300 days encompassing the last half (3.5 years) of the Seven Year Covenant Period and the entire Great Tribulation or Time of Wrath of 3.45 years. The Great Tribulation, or Day of The Lord, or Day of Wrath, follows the Seven Year Covenant; math, logic and text all attest to it unequivocably! Daniel 8:13-14 and 12:11-12 will not fit with the Pre-tribulation Interpretation and are systematically absent from their scenarios. The true Tribulation Period is a period of 1260 days (3.45 yrs) that begins with the end of the Seven Year Covenant and lasts until Jesus returns with the raptured Church to re-consecrate the temple and set up his 1,000 year reign (Rev 11:3; 12:6, 13; 13:5).
Moreover, the capstone is Daniel 12:1 which tell the world unequivocably that the Rapture takes place during the Great Tribulation and absolutely contradicts all Pre-Trib heresy:
The rapture occurs 45 days after the abomination of desolation at the end of the Seven Year Covenant and into the Great Tribulation (Dan 12:11; See also Matt 24:15-35, Mark 13:14-31 & Luke 21:20-28). That's why scripture says: Revelation 7:14 KJV "And I said unto him, Sir, thou knowest . And he said to me, These are they which came out of Great Tribulation, and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb." This is the "Church!" Not some multitude of martyrs from the Great Tribulation as pre-tribulationist have been taught. Regarding such an erroneous idea here is what scripture says: Rev 15:8 says: "... and no one could enter the temple until the seven plagues of the seven angels were completed," e.g., the great tribulation completed; Rev 16:8 says: ". . . and they cursed the name of God, who had control over these plagues, but they refused to repent and glorify him;" Rev 16:10-11: ". . . Men gnawed their tongues in agony and cursed the God of heaven because of their pains and their sores, but they refused to repent of what they had done;" Rev 9:20: "The rest of mankind that were not killed by these plagues still did not repent of the work of their hands; they did not stop worshiping demons, and idols of gold, silver, bronze, stone and wood-- idols that cannot see or hear or walk." NO ONE SAVED DURING THE GREAT TRIBULATION. However, at the end a remnant glorifies God: Rev 11:13b: ". . . the survivors were terrified and gave glory to the God of heaven."
After the rapture, the Church will then be in heaven at the marriage supper of the Lamb while the Time of Wrath or The Great Tribulation is going-on on earth. The Church will then return with Christ to set up his millennial reign (Rev 19:11-20:7). The entire ending periods adds up to about 10.5 years broken down into 3 roughly 3.5 year periods. The first-half of the Covenant Period, where nothing of earth-shaking significance happens, is outside of Daniel's 70th Week of Daniel 9:24. Only with this understanding of the sequence of events do the gospel accounts and all the scripture, particularly Dan 8:13, 12:1; 12:11-12, 2 Thes 2:1-5, Jeremiah 30:7 and all the warnings about not being deceived make logical sense.
Jerry Warrington August 16, 2014.
"They weave the spider's web. - Isaiah 59:5.
See the spider's web, and behold in it a most suggestive picture of the false prophet's religion. It is meant to catch his prey: the spider fattens himself on flies, and the Pharisee has his reward. .
Less astute persons are easily entrapped by the loud professions of pretenders, and even the more judicious cannot always escape. Philip baptized Simon Magus, whose guileful declaration of faith was so soon exploded by the stern rebuke of Peter. Custom, reputation, praise, advancement, and other flies, are the small game which blind blind-leaders of the blind. A spider's web is a marvel of skill: look at it and admire the cunning hunter's wiles. Is not a deceiver's religion equally wonderful? How does he make so barefaced a lie appear to be a truth? How can he make his tinsel answer so well the purpose of gold? A spider's web comes all from the creature's own bowels. The bee gathers her wax from flowers, the spider sucks no flowers, and yet she spins out her material to any length. Even so false prophets find their trust and hope within themselves; their anchor was forged on their own anvil, and their cable twisted by their own hands. They lay their own foundation, and hew out the pillars of their own house, disdaining to be debtors to the sovereign grace of God. But a spider's web is very frail. It is curiously wrought, but not enduringly manufactured. It is no match for the servant's broom, or the traveller's staff. False cobwebs will soon come down when the besom of destruction begins its purifying work. Which reminds us of one more thought, viz., that such cobwebs are not to be endured in the Lord's house: He will see to it that they and those who spin them shall be destroyed for ever. O my soul, be thou resting on something better than a spider's web. Be the Lord Jesus thine eternal hiding-place.
|Major Error in Generally Held Evangelical End-of-Age Prophetic Interpretations.pdf
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|The End of This Civilization
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© Copyright Kenneth F. Wright, April 10, 2000.
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