Greetings my friends,
The dictionary defines fundamentalism as a movement in American Protestantism that arose in the early part of the 20th century that stressed the infallibility of the Bible in all matters of faith and doctrine. That rather limited definition makes me a Fundamentalist, and I hope you as well.
Contrary to the opinion and accusations of some this definition excludes men like Osama Bin Laden and the outspoken President Ahmadinejad of Iran. For even though these men, like most Muslims, take very literally the Koran and by that can be called Fundamentalists, this is where the similarity stops. The Koran is not the Word of God, and was not written by the God of Israel, who is the only true and living God. Furthermore, the God who spoke to Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Moses, David, Solomon, and all the Jewish prophets is the Lord Jesus Christ. The Muslims will be the first to tell you they consider Jesus a man and a prophet, but not the divine Son of God, nor do they believe he died when he was arrested and condemned by Pontius Pilate. They say he escaped death and was taken alive to Heaven. Isn’t that interesting?
What is absolutely fascinating is the latest Islamic prophecy news coming out Iran. Apparently the news is spreading quickly in Iran and other places that the long awaited Islamic Messiah, the Mahdi, is returning soon to bring peace and a New World Order, and harsh judgment upon those who refuse to go along with his kingdom plans. From what I have read the Mahdi will not be alone when he makes his appearance. He will be accompanied by his sidekick, Jesus himself, who will be to the Mahdi what Tonto was to the Lone Ranger. Can you believe this mingling of Mahdi and Jesus is happening before our eyes. What does all this mean in relationship to the trouble in the Middle East? Will the feud between the Sunnis and Shiites be settled by this coming together of Mahdi and Jesus? Does this news signal a coming change in the behavior of Iran and Syria, even Osama Bin Laden? Or will there have to be more regime changing wars first?
I just can’t stop asking relevant questions. What will be the response of Christendom to this emerging news from Iran? I am especially interested in how the Christian Fundamentalists and Evangelicals will respond to the Fundamentalists of Islam. So far, they have been the greatest patriotic supporters of President Bush’s Middle East policies and the War on Terror. How will President Bush, a professing born again Christian, react to this sensational prophecy out of Iran? Are we finally beginning to see some ray of hope for peace in the Middle East by this news? Is it possible that Iran’s President will repeal his call for wiping Israel off the map, if the Jews and Christians go along with the Mahdi and Jesus connection? Or, as I asked, will there have to be a regime change first, either from within or by war?
As I understand all of this, whether there are any more regime changing wars or not, the days are soon coming when peace will break out in the Holy Land. What if the next thing that happens to the Mullahs in Tehran is the announcement that Mary, the mother of Jesus, has somehow contacted or appeared unto them, asking them to love and make peace with the Jews and Christians, and help them bring about the Kingdom of Heaven on the Earth? Are you aware that Islam highly esteems Mary, and she is mentioned many times in the Koran?
I know these questions about and comments on the Islamic prophecies will cause ridicule and laughter in some, hostility in others, but something must take place to break the deadlock or ice in the current War on Terror with the jihadist madmen of Islam, or else millions will die in a nuclear exchange. Some are saying it will take a nuclear explosion somewhere killing millions to so deepen the fear in mankind that peace will be demanded everywhere. My question, and I am sure that of most Western leaders, to all Islamic Fundamentalists who are waging this seemingly eternal war with us infidels, is this. Will you settle for a “spiritual” coming of the Mahdi and Jesus, working their kingdom magic in and through the Presidents of Russia and America, that has the endorsement of the Pope and Mullahs in Tehran? Please read the article “The Judgment Chronicles” posted on our web site for how most American Fundamentalists and Evangelicals will eventually respond to the coming Peace Covenant of the Middle East. What you will read there is not pleasant or heartwarming, and has moved me to write this article on the Fundamentalist.
All of us need to understand a little history of the Fundamentalist movement and what their spiritual condition is today. The early 20th century found most Protestants entangled in division and a great debate over Biblical truth. Notice I said Protestant, for Roman Catholicism was already considered by most as the mystery harlot, Babylon the Great, of Revelation 17, the mystery being that the pagan religions of the Old Testament had found a new home in Rome and a new name, the Roman Catholic Church. It was commonly assumed that the Jesus represented by Catholicism was “another” as Paul taught in 2 Corinthians 11.
The spiritual battle being waged was among those who still protested against the Roman church system. There had arisen during those days many false “liberal” teachers who doubted or denied the most basic doctrines of Christ, and like the Roman Church, did this all in the name of Jesus. Those who stood up to defend these foundational teachings became known as Fundamentalists. They wrote down what they thought to be the doctrines one should hold to consider himself a true Christian. This list had some variations among different congregations or denominations but pretty much contained the following six doctrines that are still held by many today:
(1) Inspiration and Inerrancy:
This first doctrine sets the foundation of the scriptures, both Old and New Testaments, as the sole source of truth in all matters of faith and doctrine, which explains why religious false teachers always attack the veracity and holiness of the Word of God. For if they can sow seeds of doubt in the written scriptures they can then offer their personal opinions and interpretations as being just as sound as that of Moses, Jeremiah, Daniel, Paul, John, and Peter. Listen to Peter’s defense of the scriptures and his confidence in their inspiration being directly from God through man:
“Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation. For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man; but holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Spirit. But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction. And “many” shall follow their pernicious ways; by reason of whom the “way of truth” shall be evil spoken of,” 2 Peter 1:20-2:1-2.
It is plainly obvious that if we believe that God wrote the scriptures they also are without error. Peter goes on to say that false prophets were not only among the Jews of the Old Testament, but would appear again in the era of the New Testament. This attack on the Word of God began in the first century of the Apostles and continues today with only the born again Fundamentalists standing with God and contending for the truth. But as we shall soon see not all who claim to be Fundamentalists really are born again, and “many” have become deceivers themselves.
(2) The Trinity:
This fundamental teaching of the New Testament has also suffered by the pens of the false teachers, even many who claim to be Fundamentalists or Evangelicals, like the immensely popular T.D. Jakes. Entire denominations, who otherwise consider themselves Fundamentalists, reject the Trinity. Many do this because it is held by the Roman Catholic system, therefore, they must reject it as a false doctrine. All this reveals to me is a bitterness and hatred towards the Catholic people which blinds them from seeing they have thrown the proverbial baby out with the bathwater-like abominations of the Roman system.
In spite of almost every page of the New Testament revealing this truth of the triune Godhead, many will just not accept the fact there are three distinct persons, the Father, the Son (also called the Word), and the Holy Spirit, who together make up the one God of both the Old and New Testaments. By the way, monotheistic Islam and modern Judaism recoil at the mere mention of the word Trinity, for it is blasphemy to them. But listen to how Jesus confirmed the Trinity when he said by the Holy Spirit through Matthew and John:
“All power is given unto me in Heaven and Earth. Go ye therefore, and teach all nations (people), baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you; and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world (age),” Matthew 28:17-20.
“In the beginning was the Word (Jesus), and the Word was “with” God, and the Word “was” God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made…And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth,” John 1:1-3, 14.
(3) The Virgin Birth and Divinity:
As already mentioned, the Trinity points to the divinity of the Son of God, or as Paul said to the Philippians that Jesus Christ is equal to God. John said the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, just as Hebrews declares the work of the Father and Holy Spirit in the womb of the virgin Mary and the Son’s response…”but a body hast thou prepared me,” Hebrews 10:5. Paul adds more detail to this divine mystery of the virgin birth of the Son of Man who had to come as a man, but without the sin nature of Adam’s seed, which dwells in all men:
“Who being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God; But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: And being found in the fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross,” Philippians 2:6-8.
The Lord Jesus Christ is fully God and fully man, he is the only begotten Son of God, the Word who took upon himself human flesh. Why? So that you could spend eternity with him. But there is something else you need to know that true fundamentalism teaches. Please keep reading.
(4) The Blood Atonement:
In Jerusalem, during the days of Solomon, the once portable Temple of God that wandered with the Jews in the wilderness, was built with a Holy of Holies, where the triune God would dwell among his chosen Jewish people. The glory of the Godhead filled the Temple as it did in the wilderness after Moses had delivered Israel from the bondage of Egypt. The law and sacrificial system established by Moses was given a house on a holy hill in Jerusalem, which today is home to the Dome of the Rock mosque. The blood of animals was offered by the Jews unto their Holy God for the forgiveness of their sins. These animals, according to the Law of Moses, had to be spotless and without blemish, a perfect offering for sin or there was no remission or forgiveness.
But as Hebrews clearly and repeatedly states…”For it is not possible that the blood of bulls and goats should take away sin,” Hebrews 10:4. The God of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Moses, David, and Solomon had made it clear in the beginning that without the shedding of blood there is no remission of sin. He also spoke of the substitutional sacrifice of animals as a “temporary” covering for their sin until the day the real Lamb from God, the suffering Messiah, would come upon them and “take away” their sin. Isaac, of all people, should have known this, for Abraham his father was about to offer him in obedience to the Lord as a sacrifice for sin, when God intervened, showing Abraham that his own Son was coming to die for his Jewish people. Whenever the Jews forgot this foundational truth, which they did many times, they found themselves on a collision course with their God. For it was the false prophets and priests of Israel, who made the blood of animals their only focus, and it became their religion rather than pointing the way to the coming of the Just One, Acts 7:47-60. Christendom has mostly become a religion today as well.
John the Baptist was one of the few Jews who understood the connection between the blood of animals and the blood of the coming Messiah. The twelve Jewish disciples that Jesus hand picked were totally unaware of his coming bloody cross and execution, with Peter even rebuking the Lord for even suggesting such a horrible thing. Listen in your heart to what the apostle John said of John the Baptist, keeping in mind that the Apostle himself didn’t understand or write this until after he was converted:
“John bare witness of him, and cried, saying, This was he of whom I spake, He that cometh after me is preferred before me, for he was before me…The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world,” John 1:15, 29.
Many Jewish people who followed John the Baptist then began to follow Jesus, even though virtually none of them really understood what John meant when he called Jesus the Lamb of God. The people had been so thoroughly seduced by the Fundamentalist false teachers of Judaism, they could not see Jesus in the animals they sacrificed repeatedly in the Temple. Consequently, they followed Jesus for his miracles and the power he had, even over death itself. And yet they were still blind to his remedy for their lost condition that was sending them to an eternal Hell.
During the sham trial of Jesus, the Fundamentalist leaders and their followers cried out to Pilate, the Roman governor over Israel, to release the militant patriot and hero, Barabbas, rather than Jesus, once they realized Jesus was not going to use his awesome power to destroy the armies of Rome that were brutally oppressing them. Are the Fundamentalist Jews in Israel today making a similar choice when they depend on their alliance with the militant-economic power of America to defeat their Islamic enemies rather than their Messiah, Jesus Christ? They obviously don’t see the truth according to their own prophets, that America is the final form of the same Roman Empire that once oppressed them. My Jewish friends should know and understand that soon this shallow alliance with America will disappear and once again Jews around the world will be persecuted by the new Roman Empire. Aren’t the Jewish and Christian Fundamentalists in Israel and America both choosing the ways of Barabbas and rejecting the cross of Jesus when they take up the power of arms to defeat their enemies?
As Jesus was nailed to his cross, the mocking crowds still called upon him to display his power and come down from the cross. Even his disciples had fled in fear, with only John, his mother Mary, and few other friends on the scene watching the blood oozing from his body, all of them not knowing that the blood draining from his body would be the only way to escape the wrath and Hell that was coming upon them. As Jesus came to his end on the cross he looked down on all who were watching, including his worst enemies who wanted him dead and out of the way, and said unto all of them…”Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do,” Luke 23:34. Do you now know what we did? Keep reading, the story doesn’t end here.
(5) The Bodily Resurrection:
We now move to the doctrine which links all of the first four together, and without it, the deniers and doubters of the scriptures would be on solid ground. For if the crucified dead body of the Lord Jesus Christ did not come out of the grave, and if he did not repeatedly appear to his disciples just as they so testified, with most of them dying as martyrs for this resurrection truth; all of our preaching is in vain, Jesus would be a false prophet, and you would still be in your sins and on your way to Hell. Would you sacrifice your life and family for something you know to be a lie? Paul said over five hundred brethren at one time witnessed the resurrected Son of God, 1 Corinthians 15:1-19. Were they all liars who gave their lives for a false prophet? I hardly think so. No my friends, the historical and scriptural evidence is overwhelming that Jesus Christ is alive in the flesh and ascended into Heaven after giving instructions to his followers. As he ascended into the clouds, his disciples were told that he would return to the Earth, Acts 1. The importance of this doctrine cannot be overstated because our faith in his resurrection means that we believe the dead body of every born again Christian who has ever lived will be resurrected just as Jesus said:
“And this is the will of him that sent me, that every one which seeth the Son, and believeth on him, may have everlasting life: and I will raise him up at the last day…I am the resurrection, and the life; he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live: And whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die,” John 6:40- 11:25-26.
This awesome promise of raising the dead to be reunited with their living souls and spirits has caused the most extreme doubters to call Jesus a false prophet and lunatic. As a matter of fact, the scriptures reveal how those false Fundamentalist leaders in Israel who conspired with others to have Jesus crucified, attempted to discredit the glorious resurrection when news that his body was no longer in the tomb began to spread, Matthew 28:11-15.
Read again what Jesus said would happen…at the last day. Do you notice how he speaks both of the dead and living believers being resurrected at the last day? This is clear evidence that a day and hour is coming when the dead bodies, or as Jesus said…”though he were dead, yet shall he live”…shall be gloriously raised to live with Jesus forever. And also “at the last day” Jesus made it plain that those believers still alive on that resurrection day will live and never die, meaning their living bodies will be changed instantly into glorious bodies of flesh and bones but without sin, sickness, and the curse of death. In other words, there is a generation of believers coming who will never taste the sting of death, 1 Corinthians 15:51-58. Are we that generation? You might be asking what Jesus meant by…”at the last day”? When is this going to happen? For the answer let’s move to the next essential doctrine of the 20th century Fundamentalists.
(6) The Second Coming:
The last doctrine Fundamentalists listed as being essential for salvation and evidence that one is following the right Jesus, and not “another” as Paul warned the Corinthians, is the second coming of the Lord Jesus Christ. From what I have read about the history of early 20th century Fundamentalists this doctrine was not a unanimous choice of all those who participated. Some groups didn’t include this doctrine at all, and others just listed it in general terms with no clear definition of what it meant. In other words, some who joined the Fundamentalist bandwagon in those days could believe in the second coming of Jesus any way they so desired. This news was troubling to me.
In those days, many American Protestants believed that Jesus could not come and begin the resurrection until Christendom had taken dominion over the nations and ruled for one thousand years. This is called the Millennium. They contended that Jesus had given authority and power to the Church to establish the promised Kingdom of Heaven on Earth without his personal and bodily return to intervene in the affairs of men. This is known then as post-millennialism. There existed other teachings of the second coming such as a-millennialism, but the real debate among Fundamentalists was between post-millennialists and the pre-millennialists, who taught that the Lord Jesus would send his angels to execute the judgment and wrath of God upon a rapidly decaying world for seven years, a time known as Daniel’s 70th Week, Daniel 9:27. Then at the end of the seven years, Jesus would return and the promised Kingdom of Heaven would be established with Jesus as the King of Kings, personally ruling from Jerusalem for one-thousand years.
The pre-millennialists believed that when Jesus returned he would resurrect the dead bodies of the saints to be reunited with their souls and spirits that were in Heaven awaiting this glorious day. Moreover, this is what Jesus meant about the timing of the resurrection when he said…”at the last day”…meaning at or before the Millennium. The dead would be raised and the living saints would be instantly changed, as Paul said…”in the twinkling of an eye”…and together they would meet the Lord Jesus Christ in the clouds or in the Earth’s atmosphere, and so shall they ever be with the Lord, 1Thessalonians 4:16- 5:1-11. And since the Lord will be on the Earth for one-thousand years so will they. Within pre-millennialist groups, there arose disagreement about whether the resurrection would happen before, during, or after the 70th Week. Some believed that Jesus would descend from Heaven and stop in the clouds to call up the dead and living to meet him, and then return with them to Heaven, while the judgment and wrath of God is poured out upon the Earth for seven years. Others thought this would happen at the end of the 70th Week of Daniel, while some said it would happen midway into the seven years.
This debate has continued within pre-millennialist circles until this very day. Sadly, and with deep regret, this disagreement has often been very nasty, with condemning accusations being hurled at each other. This has brought great shame to the gospel of our Lord Jesus, and he is not pleased at all. I have written many times my understanding of how these things will come to pass which can be read on our web site. I especially hope you will read the article “Accursed from Christ” which details from the scriptures what our attitude should be toward those who disagree concerning the resurrection of the dead and rapture of the living.
I am convinced in my heart that our Lord will return in the clouds before Daniel’s 70th Week. For it is the only teaching that allows us to obey the explicit commandment of our Lord to always be watching, as Jesus said…”But of that day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of Heaven, but my Father only…Watch ye therefore: for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come…Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh,” Matthew 24:36,42,44. If one thinks Jesus won’t come for three and a half, seven, or worse yet, one-thousand years, how can he be watching and looking for the return of Jesus Christ? He can’t. Furthermore, much of the confusion among pre-millennialists is a result of not understanding the different “times or parts” of the first resurrection John was shown in Revelation 20:4-6. Many of my friends can only see one resurrection, on one day, in one hour, and that in the last days of Daniel’s 70th Week, making the resurrection and rapture a post-70th Week event. Please open your Bibles now and read where Paul and John were shown something else:
“But now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the first fruits (plural) of them that slept. For since by man came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive. But every man in his own order: Christ, the first fruits (includes many Jewish saints resurrected right after Jesus); afterward they that are Christ’s at his coming (before and after the 70th Week). Then cometh the end, when he shall have delivered up the Kingdom to God, even the Father; when he shall have put down all rule and all authority and power. For he must reign (one thousand years), till he hath put all enemies under his feet. The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death”, 1 Corinthians 15:20-26.
“And I saw thrones (on Earth after Armageddon, Revelation 5:10), and they (the faithful resurrected before 70th Week) sat upon them, and judgment (1 Corinthians 6:1-5) was given unto them: and I saw the souls (not bodies) of them (killed by Antichrist during the 70th Week) that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshiped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived (bodies resurrected) and reigned with Christ a thousand years. But the rest of the dead lived (resurrected) not again until the thousand years were finished. This is the first resurrection. Blessed and holy is he that hath “part” in the first resurrection: on such the second death hath no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with him a thousand years”, Revelation 20:4-6.
“And the (resurrected) armies which were in heaven (before Armageddon and 70th Week) followed him (Jesus making war against Antichrist) upon white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean….These (Antichrist’s armies) shall make war with the Lamb, and the Lamb shall overcome them: for he is Lord of lords, and King of kings: and they (Lord’s resurrected armies) that are with him are called, and chosen, and faithful….(now go back over seven years earlier) After this I looked, and behold a door was opened in heaven: and the first voice (Jesus) which I heard was as it were of a trumpet (1 Thessalonians 4:16-18) talking with me; which said, Come up hither, and I will show thee things which must be hereafter (the resurrection and rapture of chosen and faithful)….And round about the throne were four and twenty seats: and upon the seats I saw four and twenty elders (representing all the faithful) sitting, clothed in white raiment: and they had on their heads crowns of gold (given when Jesus comes for the faithful, 2 Timothy 4:8)….(Lord’s last words to today’s churches before rapture) I counsel thee to buy of me gold (true sound doctrine) tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich (spiritually); and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear; and anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest see. As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent”, Revelation 19:14, 17:14, 4:1,4, 3:18-19.
Excuse me for putting many parentheses in the above scriptures which encased my comments and understanding of the order of coming events. For there are some who get easily offended by anyone who they think is tampering with the Word of God. All I am trying to do is tie it all together. Anyway, from Paul, John, and Matthew’s holy writings we can clearly see the order of resurrections and their timing in relationship to Daniel’s 70th Week, Armageddon, and the Millennium. I will list them in order:
(1) Jesus Christ himself,
(2) Many Jewish saints whose bodies were resurrected soon or right after the Lord, and were seen among many in Jerusalem, Matthew 27:52-53. These were the first fruits of the resurrection power of Jesus. What their names are is not given in the scriptures, but they were taken to Heaven along with the souls of all the other Jewish saints that had been trapped in the Paradise compartment of Hell, the temporary home of the faithful Jews who died.
(3) All of the dead bodies of the remaining Jewish and Gentile saints of all generations, including the bodies of the Jewish Apostles, at the coming of Jesus to the clouds before the 70th Week begins, Revelation 4:1-11, 1 Thessalonians 4:16-18. Once the dead bodies are raised and reunited with their souls who were with Jesus, the Lord will instantly glorify the bodies of the living saints, and together we will raptured or caught away into the clouds to meet the Lord in the air and taken to Heaven. On that unknown day and hour the faithful and wise will be separated from the faithless and foolish, who refused to hear what the Holy Spirit was saying to the seven churches of Revelation 2&3. Remember, Peter teaches us that God’s judgment begins in the house of God, which is comprised of all those who take the name of Jesus and claim to be his. The faithful and wise have departed from their sin nature, while the foolish and faithless only desire a free ticket to Heaven and not freedom from the power of sin, 1 Peter 4:17-18, 2 Timothy 2:18-26. On Earth, once the smoke clears and the confusing disappearance of a small world-wide remnant is explained away, the foolish will complete their “ecumenical” efforts of world unity, helped by the Three-Legged Stool doctrine of Rick Warren, where all political-religious-economic organizations come together to establish the Kingdom of Heaven.
(4) The two Jewish prophets of the 70th Week who are murdered by the Antichrist, who mockingly displays their dead bodies on a street in Jerusalem. They will be resurrected by God in the sight of multitudes and called up into the clouds. Their death will signal the beginning of the “fullness” of God’s wrath upon the nations that lasts for the final 391 days of Daniel’s Week, Revelation 11:7-14, 9:14-15, 15:1.
(5) All those who become born again Christians during the 70th Week from the preaching of the two Jewish prophets and the 144,000 Jewish evangelists, but are killed by the armed forces of the Antichrist and False Prophet, Revelation 20:4-6. If you read my encased comments in the scriptures above, you can hopefully see that John sees two groups of saints “after” the Lord Jesus has arrived on the Earth to utterly defeat the Antichrist and his armies at Armageddon. In his vision he is looking at resurrected, white linen clad, crowned saints sitting on thrones, fronted by the twenty-four elders, and “only” the souls of those murdered by the Antichrist apart from their bodies. Those on the thrones are the same people clothed in white linen, wearing crowns of gold that were given to them after their resurrection and rapture in Revelation 4. The living and surviving saints of the 70th Week, both Jew and Gentile, will enter in the Kingdom and repopulate the Earth, Matthew 25::31-46.
By my count this means there are five parts at five different times to the first resurrection. John’s vision of all resurrections is finished when he sees the rest of the dead, those who rejected the Lord Jesus Christ, having their bodies raised and reunited with their lost souls at the end of the millennial reign of Jesus. This is the second death where they are judged and sentenced to the eternal Lake of Fire, Revelation 20:6-15. As Paul declared…”The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death”.
Getting back to pre-millennialism, it is abundantly clear to me that it is the only conclusion one can come to if he reads the scriptures literally, which even our Lord Jesus did when describing his prophetic picture of the last days, Matthew 24, Mark 13, Luke 21. We have just studied what John said in Revelation 20 concerning the literal one-thousand years on the Earth. My post-millennial friends should remember that Revelation 19, which precedes Revelation 20, describes in excellent detail the literal bodily return of the Lord Jesus Christ to make war on the Antichrist and his armies that have massed in Israel against him, delusionally thinking he is some invading extraterrestrial alien army. Sounds reasonable doesn’t it?
The a-millennialists, who say there is no millennium, are even more deceived. For they seem to have fallen into serious error by allegorizing the scriptural references to the one-thousand years recorded six times in the first seven verses of Revelation 20. They refuse to read this literally. It appears to me that our Lord purposely repeated the phrase “one-thousand years” six times to John, knowing that later some who take his name would not read the scriptures literally. If they treat the Revelation and second coming this way, they will also spiritualize and allegorize the other essential doctrines I have listed in this article.
The false post-millennial doctrine, which teaches that Christendom has been empowered by God to subdue the nations without Jesus being bodily present, is easily accepted by those possessed with a militant and arrogant mindset. Many proud patriotic pre-millennialists, including some of my dear friends, and many a-millennialists are having no problem joining with them in their political-religious-military crusades, even though they differ over their understandings of the one-thousand years. This explains to me why so many call cross-carrying pre-millennialists…cowards, defeatists, failures, escapists, and every other lowly name…for not joining with their militant causes to take over the nations, by force if necessary.
I say all these things with no malice and condemnation, for my Lord has shown and instructed me to reach out with love and compassion to all those who disagree with me. As important as it is to understand the meat of Bible prophecy, if it is not accompanied with the love of God for others, as Paul said…”I am nothing”, 1 Corinthians 13. However, I would not be showing the true love of our Lord if I did not warn my friends and family of the consequences of believing in these seducing doctrines. It is not wrong to tell someone you love they are deceived, but it is if you want them to perish and don’t offer them the way out of their deception, the merciful blood of Jesus Christ.
Click on “Articles” to read Part 2