Thursday, January 15, 2015

Series on the Rapture

Note that Dr. Reluctant is doing a series on the rapture. Everything he writes is full of meat and well thought out. Here is an excerpt from the first installment which I appreciated:

In a sense, I don’t blame them [critics].  Books about prophecy from a pretrib perspective commonly come with covers sporting an eclipse (lunar or solar, either will do); sometimes a dragon or two.  Whole ministries exist to promulgate sometimes simplistic versions of Dispensational premillennialism, occasionally tainted with American exceptionalism.  When John Hagee writes about the “Four Blood Moons” we are not really surprised.  There is always a ready market for ‘signs of the times’ books and newspaper exegesis.  I distance myself from such things.  I distance myself a little even from those good men who can scarcely write an article about anything unless pretribulationism or pre-wrath or what-have-you has some space allotted to it.

2nd Installment HERE


On a personal note, I was raised Roman Catholic (amil-posttrib). As I got older I briefly attended a premil-posttrib church until I apostatized into the New Age. When God set me straight I defaulted to posttrib. Frankly, I was more interested in the premil-amil-preterist debates and the future of Israel than rapture timing. It was when a bunch of zealous "Fulfilled Prophecy" website buffs flocked over to the Omega Letter website to set the pretribbers right that I became hooked.

It's a little bit like Chess - I didn't like the game and was never interested until I actually started playing it. I did learn something from the process, though - pretribulationism is actually better than the criticism leveled against it. I discovered that its critics often struggle to answer hard questions aimed at their own systems. I also discovered that in many cases the underlying motivation for people like Barbara Rossing (The Rapture Exposed) isn't to expose the rapture. At the heart of much of the criticism aimed at dispensationalism and pretribulationism is the critics' animosity for Israel and "fundamentalism."


Andrew said...

"At the heart of much of the criticism aimed at dispensationalism and pretribulationism is the critics' animosity for Israel and "fundamentalism." "

BINGO! You really hit the nail on the head with this. You don't come across very many ardent supporters of Israel that are posttribbers or amillenialists. Amillenialism does seem to be the eschatology of choice for "liberal" Christianity. This is actually one of the reasons I lean towards pretrib. One of the huge impacts of the pretrib movement of the 1800s was a radical shift of attitude towards Israel, and became in my mind a huge catalyst for the restoration of the Jewish state.

Alf Cengia said...

To be fair I know many posttribbers and prewrathers who love Israel - Kurschner, Rosenthal, Michael Brown, Joel Richardson etc.

But I (and several others) have seen a disturbing trend from some proponents of that group to demonize Israel.

Andrew said...

Yes, thanks for calling me out on that. If I could edit I would have just said amillenialists.