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The Unannounced Reason Behind American Fundamentalism's Support for the State of Israel

By Gary North
July 19, 2000

With the President meeting this week with Prime Minister Barak of Israel and Yassir Arafat, it may be time to review a topic that is baffling for Jews, annoying to Arabs, and unavoidable for American Congressmen: the unswerving political support for the State of Israel by American fundamentalists.

Vocal support of a pro-Israel American foreign policy is basic for the leaders of American Protestant fundamentalism. This has been true ever since 1948. Pat Robertson and Rev. Jerry Falwell have been pro-Israel throughout their careers, beginning two decades before the arrival of the New Christian Right in the late 1970's. These men are not aberrations. The Trinity Broadcasting Network is equally supportive. So are the best-selling authors who speak for, and influence heavily, Protestant fundamentalism, most notably Hal Lindsey, author of The Late Great Planet Earth (1970), and Tim LaHaye, the husband of Beverly LaHaye of Concerned Women for America, which says on its Web site that it is "the nation’s largest public policy women’s organization." Rev. LaHaye and his co-author have each earned some $10 million in royalties for their multi-volume futuristic novel, Left Behind. They have a very large audience.

People may ask themselves, "Why this support?" Fundamentalists earlier in this century were sometimes associated with anti-Semitism. James M. Gray of the Moody Bible Institute in 1927 wrote an editorial favorable to Henry Ford’s Dearborn Independent series on Jews. Gray’s editorial appeared in the Moody Bible Institute Monthly. Arno C. Gabelein, a prominent fundamentalist leader, believed that the Protocols of the Learned Elders of Zion was a legitimate document. Gabelein’s 1933 book, The Conflict of the Ages, would today be regarded as anti-Semitic.

Other fundamentalist leaders of the pre-War era, while not anti-Semitic, attempted to maintain neutrality on the issue of Hitler’s persecution of Jews. In his 1977 book, Armageddon Now!, Christian historian Dwight Wilson cites numerous examples of fundamentalist theologians in the late 1930’s who regarded Hitler’s discriminatory policies against Jews as part of God’s judgment on the Jews. He writes: "Pleas from Europe for assistance for Jewish refugees fell on deaf ears, and ‘Hands Off’ meant no helping hand. So in spite of being theologically more pro-Jewish than any other Christian group, the premillennarians also were apathetic. . . ." [pp. 96-97].

What was it that persuaded almost the entire fundamentalist movement to move from either hostility or neutrality to vocal support of Israel? No single answer will fit every case, but there is a common motivation, one not taken seriously by most people in history: getting out of life alive.

The Not-Quite Last Things

The Christian doctrine of eschatology deals with the last things. Sometimes eschatology deals with the personal: the death of the individual. Usually, however, it has to do with God’s final judgment of mankind.

There have been three main views of eschatology in the history of the church, which theologians classify as premillennialism, postmillennialism, and amillennialism. The pre- and post- designations refer to the expected timing of the bodily return of Jesus in the company of angels: before (pre-) the establishment of an earthly kingdom of God, or after (post-) this kingdom has extended its rule across the earth.

The amillennial view is that the kingdom of God is mainly spiritual. This became the dominant view of Christianity for over a millennium after Augustine’s City of God, with its distinction between the city of God, the church (spiritual and permanent) and the political cities of man (rising and falling). Luther held this eschatological view. Most of the Continental Protestant Reformers of the sixteenth century held it. But seventeenth-century Scottish Presbyterians were more likely to hold the postmillennial view, and they carried it with them when they emigrated to America. Their postmillennialism rested in part on their belief that God will convert the Jews to Christianity as a prelude to the kingdom’s period of greatest expansion, an idea derived from Paul’s Epistle to the church at Rome, chapter 11. Presbyterians are officially commanded to pray for the conversion of the Jews. [Westminster Larger Catechism (1647), Answer 191.] The first generation of Puritan Congregationalists in New England also held similar postmillennial opinions.

The premillennial view was commonly held in the pre-Augustinian church, although the other views did have defenders. After 1660, premillennialism became increasingly common within American Puritanism. Cotton Mather was a premillennialist. But Jonathan Edwards was postmillennial. In nineteenth-century America, both views were common prior to the Civil War. After the War, premillennialism steadily replaced postmillennialism among fundamentalists. A secularized postmillennialism was adopted by the Social Gospel movement. Non-fundamentalist Protestants from Continental Europe, like the Catholics, remained amillennial. Postmillennialism faded after World War I until the late 1970's, when it experienced a limited revival.

Basic to the view of both premillennialism and amillennialism is pessimism regarding the efforts of Christians to build a culture-wide kingdom of God on earth. Both positions hold that only by Jesus’ bodily presence among the saints can Christians create an cultural alternative to the competing kingdoms of man. The premillennialist believes that this international kingdom construction task will begin in earnest a thousand years before the final judgment, with Jesus ruling from a literal throne, probably located in Jerusalem. The amillennialist views this universal extension of the kingdom of God into culture as possible only after the resurrection of all humanity at the final judgment, i.e., in a sin-free, death-free, Christians-only world.

Tribulation and Rapture

Just prior to Jesus’ return to set up an earthly kingdom, argue most amillennialists and all premillennialists, there will be a time of persecution, called the Great Tribulation. It is here that the great debate over the Jews begins. Amillennialists believe that Christians will be persecuted by their enemies. A handful of premillennialists, referred to as "historic premillennialists," also identify Christians as the targets. This version of premillennialism has been insignificant institutionally since the 1870’s. The dominant premillennial view says that Jews will suffer the Great Tribulation. Born-again Christians will have flown the coop – literally. This is the doctrine of the pre-tribulation Rapture.

According to pre-tribulation premillennialists, who are known as dispensationalists, Jesus will come secretly in the clouds and raise deceased Christians – and only Christians – from the dead. Immediately thereafter, every true Christian will be transported bodily into the sky, and from there to heaven: the Rapture event. The passage cited to defend this view is found in Paul’s first letter to the church at Thessolonica: "For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up [harpazo] together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord" (I Thes. 4:16-17). Throughout most of church history, this passage was associated with the final judgment, but beginning sometime around 1830 in England, it was linked to the premillennial, pretribulational Rapture – a word that is not found in the Greek text or in any English translation of the New Testament. Its Latin root word is in Jerome’s Vulgate, a translation of the Greek "harpazo" – seize, catch, or pluck.

This outlook on the earthly future became increasingly popular among fundamentalists, beginning in the 1870's. It was formalized in the footnotes of the Scofield Reference Bible (1909; revised, 1917). In 1930, it became the first Oxford University Press book to reach sales of one million. It has now sold over five million copies. C. I. Scofield’s system has defined fundamentalism for nine decades.

 

The Rapture-based escape from history is now universally believed by fundamentalists to be imminent. Generations of fundamentalists have believed that they will escape bodily death. They will be transported into the sky, like Elijah, though without benefit of chariots.

But when? That has been the great question. The answer: "Soon." But why soon? Why not a millennium from now? The psychological answer: Because men do not live that long in this millennium. The main selling point for fundamentalism’s Bible prophecies is to get insight into what is coming soon. In this case, the issue of mortality is central. As the slogan says, "Everybody wants to go to heaven, but nobody wants to die." The doctrine of the imminent Rapture allows Christians to believe seriously that they can go to heaven without dying. Millions of Americans believe this today, just as their fathers and grandfathers believe this today.

But how can they be so sure? Because of the events of 1948. In that year, the crucial missing piece of the prophetic puzzle – the restoration of the nation of Israel – seemed to come true. Critics of the dispensational system could no longer say, "But where is Israel in all this?" The answer, at long last: "In Palestine, just in time for the Great Tribulation."

The Grim Fate of Israel

The source of the idea of the Great Tribulation is found in Jesus’ last words regarding Israel, which are recorded in Matthew 24 and Luke 21.

And when ye shall see Jerusalem compassed with armies, then know that the desolation thereof is nigh. Then let them which are in Judaea flee to the mountains; and let them which are in the midst of it depart out; and let not them that are in the countries enter thereinto. For these be the days of vengeance, that all things which are written may be fulfilled. But woe unto them that are with child, and to them that give suck, in those days! for there shall be great distress in the land, and wrath upon this people. And they shall fall by the edge of the sword, and shall be led away captive into all nations: and Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled (Luke 21:20-24).

Throughout most of church history, this prophecy was interpreted as having been fulfilled by the Roman siege of Jerusalem and the destruction of the temple in 70 A.D. With the rise of dispensationalism, however, the fulfillment of passage was moved into the future.

Dispensationalism’s critics had long asked: "Where is the nation of Israel? Where are the Jews?" Not in Palestine, surely. So, dispensationalists tended to apply this prophecy of near-destruction to Jews in general – only symbolically residing in Israel – until 1948. This was one reason for their silence on Hitler’s persecution. Hitler was just another rung in the ladder of persecution leading to the inevitable Great Tribulation.

The prophesied agency of the great persecution has shifted over the years. As Wilson shows in Armageddon Now!, from 1917 until 1977, Russia was a prime candidate. But, after 1991, this has become difficult to defend, for obvious reasons. The collapse of the Soviet Union has created a major problem for dispensationalism’s theologians and its popular authors. But there have been no comparable doubts about the intensity of the coming persecution. Here is the opinion of John F. Walvoord, one of dispensationalism’s leading theologians, who served for three decades as the president of Dallas Theological Seminary (founded, 1924), the movement’s main seminary.

The purge of Israel in their time of trouble is described by Zechariah in these words: "And it shall come to pass, that in all the land, saith Jehovah, two parts therein shall be cut off and die; but the third shall be left therein. And I will bring the third part into the fire, and will refine them as silver is refined, and will try them as gold is tried" (Zechariah 13:8, 9). According to Zechariah’s prophecy, two thirds of the children of Israel in the land will perish, but the one third that are left will be refined and be awaiting the deliverance of God at the second coming of Christ which is described in the next chapter of Zechariah. [John F. Walvoord, Israel in Prophecy (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, [1962] 1988), p. 108.

Nothing can or will be done by Christians to save Israel’s Jews from this disaster, for all of the Christians will have been removed from this world three and a half years prior to the beginning of this 42-month period of tribulation. (The total period of seven years is interpreted as the fulfillment of the seventieth week of Daniel [Dan. 9:27].)

In order for most of today’s Christians to escape physical death, two-thirds of the Jews in Israel must perish, soon. This is the grim prophetic trade-off that fundamentalists rarely discuss publicly, but which is the central motivation in the movement’s support for Israel. It should be clear why they believe that Israel must be defended at all costs by the West. If Israel were militarily removed from history prior to the Rapture, then the strongest case for Christians’ imminent escape from death would have to be abandoned. This would mean the indefinite delay of the Rapture. The fundamentalist movement thrives on the doctrine of the imminent Rapture, not the indefinitely postponed Rapture.

Every time you hear the phrase, "Jesus is coming back soon," you should mentally add, "and two-thirds of the Jews of Israel will be dead in ‘soon plus 84 months.’" Fundamentalists really do believe that they probably will not die physically, but to secure this faith prophetically, they must defend the doctrine of an inevitable holocaust.

This specific motivation for the support of Israel is never preached from any fundamentalist pulpit. The faithful hear sermons – many, many sermons – on the pretribulation Rapture. On other occasions, they hear sermons on the Great Tribulation. But they do not hear the two themes put together: "We can avoid death, but only because two-thirds of the Jews of Israel will inevitably die in a future holocaust. America must therefore support the nation of Israel in order to keep the Israelis alive until after the Rapture." Fundamentalist ministers expect their congregations to put two and two together on their own. It would be politically incorrect to add up these figures in public.

The fundamentalists I have known generally say they appreciate Jews. They think Israel is far superior to Arab nations. They believe in a pro-Israel foreign policy as supportive of democracy and America’s interests. They do not dwell upon the prophetic fate of Israel’s Jews except insofar as they want to transfer the threat of the Great Tribulation away from themselves and their families. Nevertheless, this is the bottom line: the prophetic scapegoating of Israel. This scapegoat, not Christians, must be sent into the post-Rapture wilderness.

Evangelism in Israel

 

Their eschatology has produced a kind of Catch-22 for fundamentalists. What if, as a result of evangelism, the Jews of Israel were converted en masse to Christianity? They would then be Raptured, along with their Gentile brethren, leaving only Arabs behind. This scenario would make the immediate fulfillment of prophecy impossible: no post-Rapture Israelis to persecute. So, fundamentalists have concluded that the vast majority of the Jews of Israel cannot, will not, and must not be converted to Christianity.

This raises an obvious question: Why spend money on evangelizing Israelis? It would be a waste of resources. This is why there are so few active fundamentalist ministries in Israel that target Jews. They target Arabs instead. Eschatologically speaking, the body of an Israeli must be preserved, for he may live long enough go through the Great Tribulation. But his soul is expendable. This is why fundamentalists vocally support the nation of Israel, but then do very little to preach to Israelis the traditional Protestant doctrine of salvation by faith in Jesus Christ. Fundamentalists have a prophetic agenda for Israelis that does not involve at least two-thirds of the Israelis’ souls. Israelis are members of the only group on earth that has an unofficial yet operational King’s X against evangelism by fundamentalists, specifically so that God may preserve Israelis for the sake of the destruction of modern Israel in the Great Tribulation. The presence of Israel validates the hope of fundamentalists that Christians, and Christians alone, will get out of life alive.

July 19, 2000

Gary North is the author of Conspiracy: A Biblical View, which discusses the 20th century's Anglo-American alliance. Download a free copy at www.freebooks.com.


To: Miss Antiwar

Many American Christians do not realize that there are a fair number of Christians among the Arab Palestinian population. The stereotype of all Arabs being Muslims is not correct, especially in Palestine. American Christians also seem to be largely ignorant of the fact that these Palestinian brothers and sisters in Christ have suffered just as much under the Israelis as the Muslim Palestinians have. As far as the Israelis are concerned, they do not really care much about any distinctions between the two groups.

Christians can and have debated endlessly about various eschatological schemes. While we should live in the sure hope of Christ's return, the resurrection, and the eternal kingdom, first we have this life to live here and now. Jesus had a lot to say about Christians loving each other. Turning our backs in indifference towards those brothers and sisters in Christ who are suffering in other countries is not loving. Shame on us.

I am not saying here that Israel is uniquely evil. There are other countries, like Sudan or China, where Christians are undergoing far more severe persecution. Shame on us for not caring more about our brethren there, either. But claiming that Israel's record of treatment of its Palestinian Christian minority is merely less bad than that of Sudan or China is faint praise indeed.


To: Stefan Stackhouse

http://news.bbc.co.uk/hi/english/world/middle_east/newsid_685000/685201.stm Christian population in Israel from the BBC


To: Stefan Stackhouse

As an Orthodox Christian, I must say that I found this essay by Gary North to be very fascinating. Since we consider ourselves as the original Church established in 33 AD, and have undergone almost 2,000 years of struggle, both bodily and spiritual, in defense of the Gospel, it is quite astounding to see that ideas such as those espoused by pre-,post-, and a-Mill's are not only sriously believed by tens of millions of people but also have such disproportionate impact on foreign policy.

As you pointed out, many Christians (many of them Orthodox whose families have lived in the Holy Land for as long as the Jews have), were forcibly dispossessed in 1948 (artillery attacks on villages, etc.). I know some of these people personally. The Israeli Army was not a Boy Scout troop, but our media has an unwritten rule about such things.

I am currently reading a book [From the Holy Mountain / A Journey among the Christians of the Middle East, by William Dalrymple] on the persecution the Christians in the Middle East and northern Africa are undergoing (the Muslims having the full support of the US government, which cares only about the oil supply from the Muslim countries). Soon, there may be no Christians left in many areas, after a continuous presence of 2,000 years.

The same way that the British Empire went out of its way to help prop up the murderous Muslim Turkish Empire for 200 years, the American government is helping prop up murderous Muslim regimes now -- as long as they do Washington's bidding, just as Saddam Hussein was the US's favored client until the day he invaded Kuwait.


To: wildandcrazyrussian

As you pointed out, many Christians (many of them Orthodox whose families have lived in the Holy Land for as long as the Jews have), were forcibly dispossessed in 1948 (artillery attacks on villages, etc.). I know some of these people personally. The Israeli Army was not a Boy Scout troop, but our media has an unwritten rule about such things.

No, the Israelis were no Boy Scout troop, but what do you want when you're fighting for your existence while the world sits back and yawns?

I realize this may disturb your version of history, but who started the conflict in 1948? Who tried to drive the Jews into the sea? Who just couldn't live in peace with the Jews? And who fled, at the prompting of the Arab armies (who promised to destroy the Jewish state in a matter of days so that the fleeing Arabs could return and help themselves to the property and possessions of the Jews), while the socialist Jews begged them to stay? Your Arab refugees, including the Christian Arabs.

Another FYI - if you think the Christian Arabs "suffered" while under the control of the Jews (in my opinion, they were treated better than they deserve), you should see what they say about how their Muslim "brothers" are treating them now. Arafat is not exactly Santa Claus, despite the fact that "our media has an unwritten rule about such things", i.e., telling the truth about this mass murderer.


To: Stefan Stackhouse

But claiming that Israel's record of treatment of its Palestinian Christian minority is merely less bad than that of Sudan or China is faint praise indeed.

How does it compare with Christianity's treatment of the Jews over the last 2000 years? Is it favorable compared to that?

Arabs, ALL Arabs, have basic human rights in Israel. They can vote, earn a living, serve in the government (while being exempt from mandatory army service), and enjoy many of the benefits available to the Jews. Moreover, under "Israel's record of treatment", the standard of living has increased, the life expectancy has increased, the standard of medical care has increased, and the infant mortality rate has decreased.

It has not been perfect. But Arabs in Israel have it a damn sight better than Jews in Arab countries and most of the Arabs in Arab countries. That you refuse to recognize it speaks more about your perception of how things are than reality.


To: The Sword

For the record, I am against the persecution of ANY religious group - Christian, Jewish, Muslim, whatever -- by any government or other religious group, any time, any place, any circumstances. I do not condone the persecution of Jews by so-called "Christians" ("so-called" because any REAL Christian would be an obedient follower of the Jew called Yeshua, and any such persecution activity would totally disobey His teachings), any more than I condone the persecution of Jews by Moslems, Communists, or National Socialists.

Within that context of general opposition to religious persecution of any type, however, I must also state that I am a Christian, and I thus have a special obligation to be concerned for those of my fellow Christians who are undergoing persecution. I suspect that Jewish people would have a similar special concern for their fellow Jews who may be suffering persecution, so there should be nothing particularly exceptional about that.


To: Miss Antiwar

I grew up in this tradition and can say that the author misses the point. It is far less complicated. The "unnanounced" reason behind fundamentalism's support for Israel is that most fundamentalist churches teach that Israel is the land of God's beloved chosen people. I heard it my whole childhood. Support for Israel in the tradition I was raised is simply support for the people of God. I was warned many, many times as a child — in Sunday school classes and from the pulpit — that God will severely judge any nation that turns against Israel.


To: Miss Antiwar, Thinkin' Gal, incindiary, AnnaZ, Darth Sidious

In order for most of today’s Christians to escape physical death, two-thirds of the Jews in Israel must perish, soon. This is the grim prophetic trade-off that fundamentalists rarely discuss publicly, but which is the central motivation in the movement’s support for Israel. It should be clear why they believe that Israel must be defended at all costs by the West. If Israel were militarily removed from history prior to the Rapture, then the strongest case for Christians’ imminent escape from death would have to be abandoned. This would mean the indefinite delay of the Rapture. The fundamentalist movement thrives on the doctrine of the imminent Rapture, not the indefinitely postponed Rapture.

Gary North is a well-known postmillennialist and adherent to the Reconstructionist idea of the end-times, which namely states that the Jews no longer are the chosen people of God or heirs to the promises He made to them (that honor was given to the Christians, thus making a liar out of God), and that the Kingdom of Christ must be brought about after the tribulation by the efforts of Christians to impose a theological form of government upon the world. Then and only then can Jesus return to claim His kingdom.

Therefore, for Mr. North to offer the disdainful opinion that pretribulation/premillennial ("pessimillennialists", he has termed them) Christians work towards peace for Israel due to an anti-Jewish "escape hatch mentality" when his own counter-Scriptural beliefs arrogantly asserts his own and Dominion Christians' efforts superior to God's promises to the Jews of redemption and a nation and His assurance that His wrath will not fall upon those who believe in His Son is not only sublimely insulting, but spiritually sinister as well.

America should always be Israel's ally, but we should definitely NOT be supporting Israel when she is ready to jettison God's warnings of relinquishing the land He gave them to His (and their) enemies...the land to which Gary North believes the Jews no longer have title or right.


To: The Sword

Buy you sure have studied your mythology. The Arab Christians who were dispossssed from their homes by the Israeli armies were not doing anything at all except living there in Jerusalem, Ramallah, etc. as their families had for centuries. The great myth that they left their homes voluntarily so that the massive Arab armies could swoop in and massacre the Jewish people is really wierd. They left because they didn't want to get killed by the artillery shelling.

Another item to note is that up until 1948, Baghdad Iraq was the region's great center for Jewish culture, with 175,000 Jewish people. That fact should indicate that there was NOT an anti-Jewish jihad until after Israel had been created by force of arms, after which a million Jews were pushed out of the surrounding countries. Makes you wonder what the Middle East would be like if Israel hadn't been started the way it was.

Over the centuries, the Jewish officials who were pretty high up in the Muslim empire did pretty well. I believe that there is ample historical evidence that the Jews could have continued moving in peacefully over the decades and would by now be a much more secure position. That doesn't answer teh question about where to put the millions of Jewish survivors of Nazi Germany's death camps, but it was still too abrupt. All I know is that the Arab Christians (Eastern Orthodox or Maronite or Melkie or Coptic) see that they are suffering for the sins of Western Christians.


To: Mercuria

Mr. North also ignores the fact that there have always been divisions within the pre-millenial camp about the timing of the Rapture. As an adherant of the pre-wrath view, I expect to be persecuted alongside Israel during the Great Tribulation, and then be Raptured before the wrath of God, aka the Day of the Lord, begins. Classical post-tribbers expect the same.

The unannounced reason behind this article is the fact that Israel's existence is a HUGE embarrassment to post- and amillenialists. For 1900 years they were able to laugh off the "absurdity" of a literal Israel, and therefore of a literal Antichrist, Seventieth Week, Great Tribulation, Rapture, and Day of the Lord. And in 1948 they were suddenly faced with the literal fulfillment of an eschatological promise to Israel, that she would be re-established in her ancient land in the last days, and rather than admit that they were wrong on this issue, they would rather see Israel destroyed by the Muslims.

Frankly, Israel doesn't need our support to survive. She has already driven off the Muslims twice despite overwhelming odds. She will continue to do so until the day her leaders make a covenant with Death. Time, times, and half a time after that, she will again suffer attack, and many of her people will be driven from the land, but not far and not for long. The Lord Himself will fight for Israel, and "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 [the Lord] will set out to destroy all the nations that attack Jerusalem" (Zech. 12:8-9).

The real and announced reason why we "fundies" defend Israel (though we don't necessarily support every decision) is that we see in her the beginning of the fulfillment of God's promise to a people who rejected Him. And if God will hold to His promises to a people who rejected His First Coming, then we needn't fear that He will keep His to us at His Second. I wish that every Jew would accept their Messiah. The fact that I recognize from prophecy that they will not do so as a nation (though many may, and have, as individuals) until after a time of intense persecution in no way changes that.

Yours in Truth,


To: Buggman

The state of 'Israel's' existence is not an embarassment to a & post mills. Far from it. There are currently books on the market, written by 'Jews' which reveal that the folks who bear the label Jew today do not have as their ancestor Abraham or Moses. They are Khazars --- not Hebrews. The vast majority of the people in Israel (and elsewhere) who call themselves Jews are not semitic in origin, but are near-asiatic. Secondly, even were a Temple to be rebuilt, the priesthood as it existed in AD 70 at the time of the destruction of Jerusalem is forever abolished - spiritually and temporally. There is no way to trace back the genealogical record and find authentic Levitical priests --- whatever zionist or dispensational delusions assert to the contrary. And, even were so-called "Jews" to offer animal sacrifices in a rebuilt 'Temple' in Jerusalem, as a Christian I believe in the final sacrifice of Jesus, the final and perfect High Priest who forever abolished animal sacrifice. I look to the Temple, which is Christ, and not to an earthly Jerusalem built of brick and mortar, but to a heavenly promised land, better promises and a New Jerusalem. Dispensationalists would do well to stop reading the 'Left Behind' series, the latest revision of the false prophet Hal Lindsey's book and read Galatians, read HEBREWS which puts the lie to the dispensationalist hermeneutic. www.preteristarchive.com/www.bibleprophecy.com /www.avision1.com. Blessings.


To: wildandcrazyrussian

Buy you sure have studied your mythology.

No, I have studied history. Your "version" is a revision of history.

The Arab Christians who were dispossssed from their homes by the Israeli armies were not doing anything at all except living there in Jerusalem, Ramallah, etc. as their families had for centuries. The great myth that they left their homes voluntarily so that the massive Arab armies could swoop in and massacre the Jewish people is really wierd.

Again, you are mistaken. They were not there for centuries. Check Mark Twain's description of the land in the mid 1800's. There was a massive Arab immigration in response to the Zionist immigration in the late 1800's. This was because the Arabs were looking for jobs and the Jews paid them and treated them better than did their Arab brothers.

They left because they didn't want to get killed by the artillery shelling.

Strange, isn't it, that their Arab brothers who stayed and became citizens of Israel with full voting rights didn't suffer the same fate. I wonder why? Your version is partially correct. They didn't want to get shelled, BUT they thought the Arab armies would be victorious and they could return and take the property of the Jews.

Another item to note is that up until 1948, Baghdad Iraq was the region's great center for Jewish culture, with 175,000 Jewish people. That fact should indicate that there was NOT an anti-Jewish jihad until after Israel had been created by force of arms, after which a million Jews were pushed out of the surrounding countries.

You admit that the Jews were pushed out while the Arabs left of their own accord. That speaks volumes about the mentality of the Arabs and the Jews. Also note, the Jews who were pushed out were accepted by their brothers. The Arabs were not. Do you blame Israel for that also?

Makes you wonder what the Middle East would be like if Israel hadn't been started the way it was.

And how should it have been created? The Arabs massacred Jews in 1929 and 1936-39 - well before the State of Israel. The Arabs were supportive of Hitler. The Arabs could have chosen to accept the Jews and not fight. There would be no refugee problem and the Arabs would still control most of the land. But, tell me how you think it should have been created?

Over the centuries, the Jewish officials who were pretty high up in the Muslim empire did pretty well. I believe that there is ample historical evidence that the Jews could have continued moving in peacefully over the decades and would by now be a much more secure position.

As second-class citizens (dhimi) subject to butchering whenever the Arabs decided to. No Arab country is known for it's adherence to democratic principles or human rights. I assume you'll forgive the Jews for not wanting to live under those conditions.

That doesn't answer teh question about where to put the millions of Jewish survivors of Nazi Germany's death camps, but it was still too abrupt.

Perhaps the Jews and their descendents should still be in the Displaced Person(s) camps. How long should the Jews have to wait to have their own land where they will not be subject to Christian "love" or Muslim "justice"?

All I know is that the Arab Christians (Eastern Orthodox or Maronite or Melkie or Coptic) see that they are suffering for the sins of Western Christians.

Actually, they're suffering for their own sins and the sins of their brother Arabs. Had they chosen to "love their neighbor" even though that neighbor was Jewish, they wouldn't be suffering today.


To: Stefan Stackhouse

Within that context of general opposition to religious persecution of any type, however, I must also state that I am a Christian, and I thus have a special obligation to be concerned for those of my fellow Christians who are undergoing persecution. I suspect that Jewish people would have a similar special concern for their fellow Jews who may be suffering persecution, so there should be nothing particularly exceptional about that.

As long as you place the blame for the persecution where it belongs - on the Arabs - I have no problem. Are the Jews perfect - of course not. But, your desire to resolve the humanitarian problems of these Arabs, Christian and Muslim, does not justify distorting either history or reality.


To: Mercuria

Thank you for your balanced insight. RE: Gary North's philosophical religious fiction: correction: KING-MESSIAH-JESUS returns to absolutely guarantee ETERNAL SAFETY to the promised "REMNANT of ISRAEL".

Until "THAT TIME", keep your powder dry. Yet, always remember that, Israel..."WALKED OUT of EGYPT"...!!! m


To: PresbyRev

There are currently books on the market, written by 'Jews' which reveal that the folks who bear the label Jew today do not have as their ancestor Abraham or Moses. They are Khazars --- not Hebrews. The vast majority of the people in Israel (and elsewhere) who call themselves Jews are not semitic in origin, but are near-asiatic.

There was a book published (in the 1970s, IIRC) called The Thirteenth Tribe, which made this argument. It has since been thoroughly refuted by, among other things, DNA evidence showing that Jews of today --whether of Eastern European, Iberian or Middle Eastern ancestry-- all share common ancestry. It is true that there has been interbreeding (voluntary and otherwise) between Jews and their non-Jewish neighbors over the centuries (which is why Ethiopian Jews are black-skinned and Scandinavian Jews are often blonde), but the genetic markers show a core of common Jewish ancestry in almost all contemporary Jews.

The Khazars did nominally convert to Judaism at one point, mostly for political reasons (they were surrounded by larger and more powerful Christian and Moslem kingdoms and were trying to preserve their independence), but that didn't last long; most of the people either never really accepted Judaism or abandoned it as soon as the political pressure eased up.


To: M. Thatcher, Buggman, maestro, Lurking Libertarian

BUMPING youse!!


To: PresbyRev

Since Lurking Libertarian has already refuted your first point, I'll move on to the others after pointing out that not only has DNA testing proven that the Jews in Israel aren't just a bunch of wannabes, but that it has also allowed the rabbis to figure out which ones belong to Aaron's line.

Secondly, even were a Temple to be rebuilt, the priesthood as it existed in AD 70 at the time of the destruction of Jerusalem is forever abolished - spiritually and temporally.

Ezekiel 40-48 disagrees with you. That's not to say that the sacrifices will be redemptive, but that just as the pre-Christ sacrifices looked prophetically forward to His final sacrifice on the Cross, the sacrifices in the Temple described by Ezekiel will look backwards in history and be a memorial to that event.

In any case, right or wrong, the Orthodox rabbis are planning to reinstate the sacrifices, which would be a prophetic landmark that would pave the way for Daniel's 70th Week. At least two cattle farmers are attempting to breed a red heifer, and are very close to success (and I seem to remember that one had succeeded already, but I can't find the reference at the moment). At least two families of Aaron's line have agreed to dedicate their firstborn sons to the priesthood. In addition, one Dr. Vendel Jones believes he knows the approximate location of the Ark of the Covenant and the Tabernacle. In thirteen years at the most, Israel will likely have a functioning, ritually pure priesthood.

I look to the Temple, which is Christ, and not to an earthly Jerusalem built of brick and mortar, but to a heavenly promised land, better promises and a New Jerusalem.

Actually, according to both First and Second Corinthians, we are the temple of God. That means, among other things, that the structure of the Temple built by Solomon gives us a number of clues about the structure of our innermost selves. It's a fascinating study, and one I recommend to you.

However, the fact that the Temple was built to reflect the human soul in no way means that there was not also a literal Temple built according to those specifications, correct? And the Tabernacle was built to reflect Heaven, but it was also a literal structure. Therefore, the future Temple prophesyed by Ezekiel is also literal, though built to reflect spiritual realities. Likewise the New Jerusalem. Likewise, the temple that will be built by Israel and defiled by Antichrist in the days before Christ's Second Coming will be literal, and by all indications will be built soon.

Dispensationalists would do well to stop reading the 'Left Behind' series, the latest revision of the false prophet Hal Lindsey's book

Hal Lindsey is a scholar and teacher, not a prophet. There is a huge diffrence between the two; a teacher may be honestly mistaken, while a prophet may not. I happen to think that both LaHaye and Lindsey are wrong on several issues, but that they are right on others. One place that both are definitely right on is that they take God at His word, and don't try to allegorize every promise made away.

and read Galatians, read HEBREWS which puts the lie to the dispensationalist hermeneutic.

First of all, your assertion that I have not is insulting. Secondly, if by Galatians you are referring to 3:15-25, you might want to look again. Not all the promises in the OT were given to Abraham. Many were given through Moses and the other prophets.

For example, Ezekiel 37:15-28 is given to the house of Judah (the southern kingdom) and Ephraim (the northern kingdom, before the Assyrian captivity), not just to "Israel" genericly, so that we could not pretend that this is a veiled promise to the Church. Read the prophet carefully. Verse 25 says specifically that they will return to the land of Israel and never again be forced from it. Does that mean that the Israel we see today is the fulfillment of that promise? No, they have not yet entered into the everlasting covenant spoken of in v. 26. However, it does affirm that the land of Israel is forever promised to Abraham's natural descendants, not to the Gentile portion of the Church.

As for Hebrews, I am curious about how you think it debunks dispensationalism--which, by the way, is a school of thought within pre-millennialism, not pre-millennialism in full. I am a pre-millennialist, but not particularly dispensationalist in my view of Scripture.

Conversely, Romans 11 destroys any theology that holds that Israel is forever rejected or destroyed. First of all, together with Ephesians 3:6, it establishes it is the Gentile Christian who has been grafted in with Israel as a joint-heir, not as a replacement. Secondly, Paul states in vv. 25-29:

I do not want you to be ignorant of this mystery, brothers, so that you may not be conceited: Israel has experienced a hardening in part until the full number of the Gentiles has come in. And so all Israel will be saved, as it is written:

The Deliverer will come from Zion; He will turn godlessness away from Jacob. And this is My covenant with them when I take away their sins.

As far as the Gospel is concerned, they are enemies on your account; but as far as election is concerned, they are loved on account of the Patriarchs, for God's gifts and His call are irrevocable.

Tell me, do you not agree that Jesus fulfilled every Messianic prophecy of His First Coming literally? Was He not born of a virgin? Did He not speak in parables? Wasn't the road made clear for Him by another crying out in the desert? Was He not punished for our sins? Were not His hands and feet pierced?

Why then do you have such a hard time with expecting the prophecies of His Second Coming to occur just as literally: The Man of Sin proclaiming himself to be God in God's (literal, earthly) Temple. Antichrist's reign for 3 1/2 years. The Great Tribulation. The image and mark of the Beast.

Christ coming on the clouds of the sky. His being seen by everyone, even those who pierced Him. The Rapture. The Day of the Lord. The reconcilliation of all of Israel. The binding of the Dragon in the Abyss. The Millennial rule over the earth. The glorious eternity beyond.

I'm sorry, but if Christ's Coming was fulfilled in 70 AD, I want my money back.

In Matthew 16:3, Jesus berated the Pharisees for not recognizing the signs of the times. Why? Because God had plainly given them through the prophets everything they needed to know about the Messiah, even when He would come (Dan. 9:24-26), and they ignored it. I believe God holds us accountable for watching the signs of the Son's Second Coming as well. The signs are all there, including the very literal and very real rebirth of Israel.

As a pastor (or so I assume by your screename) you know that you will be judged more strictly (James 3:1). At this point you are probably shaking your head or sighing in exasperation. Well then, above this is my post debunking the a-mil/post-mil assumption that Matt. 24 (and by extention, Dan. 9:27 and Revelation) is all about the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 AD. I invite you to take a stab at it.

I also invite you to do a serious study of the OT prophets, and the promises to Israel, and then, once you have familiarized yourself with them in the context of Romans 11, to do a study of their relationship with the book of Revelation. Within Revelation's 404 verses there are an estimated 800+ allusions to the Old Testament, especially the prophets (Daniel and Isaiah in particular). Since Revelation is the only book in the Bible with a special blessing promised for the one who reads it (1:3), you should find the exercise fruitful if you are willing to let the text speak for itself, take it at its word, and let the Holy Spirit guide you.

Yours in Truth,


To: Lurking Libertarian

Good catch, for a libertarian. (Just kidding, of course. :^)

Yours in Truth,


To: PresbyRev

Oops, I lost track of which thread I was on. The refutataion of preterism that I was referring to was posted on this thread. Feel free to respond on either one.

Yours in Truth,


sometimes I wonder if Luther wasn't right about Revelation…


To: Miss Antiwar

Silly Prot nonsense!


To: Buggman

Gag!!! Scholars??? Hal Lindsay is a salesman -- plain and simple!


To: M. Thatcher

Correct. You've got this right, and those arguing this or that school of theology make things far more complicated than they need to be, and pretend to know things they don't really know. Anyone who doesn't get it is invited to read Romans 11.

What do YOU think ?

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Date: 13 Sep 2011
Time: 07:27:58

Your Comments:

wHY DO YOU PRETERIST ASK FOR OPINIONS? WHEN WAS THE LAST TIME YOU POSTED ONE ON THE RAPTURE. I HAVE TAKEN WILSON'S $10,000 CHALLENGE AND DISPROVED HIM WRONG BUT YOU WON'T EVEN POST MY PROOF THAT THE RAPTURE IS REAL.
I EMAIL TODD DENNIS TO COMPLIAN ABOUT THE INTEGRITY AND HONESTY OF WILSON'S OFFER AND SENT IN THAT EMAIL PROOF THAT NOTHING IS HID AND THIS EVENT IS REPRESENTED IN REV. 3:10-13. THE REASON YOU WON'T POST IT IS BECAUSE OF PRIDE FOR IT BLOWS PRETERIST DOCTRINES TO BITS. YOU ALL ARE FAKES AND PRETERIST SO CALLED SCHOLARS ARE JUST EDUCATED FOOLS BECAUSE PROOF OF THE RAPTURE SHOWS THAT YOU KNOW NOTHING OF THE ECONOMY OF GOD.
MORE SINCERE THAN YOU, D.A.LEFLORE DAFLODEO@YAHOO.COM AND DONALDLEFLORE1@AOL.COM

 

 

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