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Dr. Brown’s Bottom Line: As I reflect on the chaos and confusion of the world around us, all the more is it imperative for us to know who we believe, to know what we believe, and to know why we believe.
Dr. Brown’s Bottom Line: We can divide over non-essential doctrines. It’s much more important that we work together as one majoring on the majors.
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Thanks for your patience, Benjamin, you’re a real trooper! I’m going to read over the last of your longer posts and maybe get a better understanding of the overall picture you’re trying to paint. That and I’m going to chill for a bit.
Your sister in Christ.
Remaining on the First Resurrection. If you can get the First Resurrection down to only a one-time event, I will concede your point that I have a manufactured misreading of Scripture.
There are three events (more in my view), but if you can remove two and get it down to one, I will tip my hat.
1. Jesus the Messiah: (First Fruits of the First Resurrection)
2. Two Witnesses: (Bodily Resurrected and visibly seen ascending into Heaven (Rev 11:11-12)
11 And after three days and an half the spirit of life from God entered into them, and they stood upon their feet; and great fear fell upon them which saw them.
12 And they heard a great voice from heaven saying unto them, Come up hither. And they ascended up to heaven in a cloud; and their enemies beheld them.
3. The Resurrection of the Saints at the Second Coming.
Even if you excluded #2, the Two Witnesses, you still have the Messiah and the Saints which happen at least 2,000 years apart from each other, meaning it still comes in stages (at least two).
You made awesome contrasts between light and dark earlier, good and evil, etc. The Resurrection follows the same idea. There are two aspects to the Resurrection as well. Resurrection unto Life, and Resurrection unto Death. -The First Resurrection is the name of the one which leads to Life (which is at least two stages), and the Second Resurrection is the designation for the one that leads to Death (one-time even at the end of the Millennial Kingdom).
So the term, First Resurrection doesn’t indicate a one-time event, but a resurrection that leads to Life. And as I pointed out earlier, Paul even teaches that the Resurrection comes in stages in 1 Corinthians 15:22-33.
I’ve got some appointments today so I’ll pick it up again later today. So, the “first resurrection” is “not” counted as the rapture itself because, in your (pre-trib) view, the rapture took place 7 yrs. earlier. I think that’s what you’re saying. Is that correct? If not, it’s back to the drawling board for me. I’ll make a reply to your post above later today.
“Even if you excluded #2, the Two Witnesses, you still have the Messiah and the Saints which happen at least 2,000 years apart from each other, meaning it still comes in stages (at least two).”
Don’t you mean 1000 years as opposed to 2000?
Or, ok, wait a minute, you mean from Messiah’s resurrection to the present time if your idea of the rapture happens before the tribulation were to start, if it was now. Is that it?
The Rapture is ‘part’ of the First Resurrection, not the the end of it. It is a member stage of the First Resurrection, or one of the orders Paul speaks of. It is not the ‘end’ or completion of the First Resurrection. Only after the Trib saints are resurrected (Rev. 20:4) is the First Resurrectiong (unto Life) complete.
Then 1,000 years later, at the end of the Millennial Kingdom, the Second Resurrection occurs which is unto Death for all who have died in unbelief.
““Even if you excluded #2, the Two Witnesses, you still have the Messiah and the Saints which happen at least 2,000 years apart from each other, meaning it still comes in stages (at least two).”
Don’t you mean 1000 years as opposed to 2000?”
I think you may have got what I was saying, but yes, I was speaking about Messiahs resurrection 2,000 years ago, so the devision between His resurrection and our resurrection will have at least 2,000 years seperating them. His was stage one, and we will be stage two. Unless you are post-trib, then we are stage three since the Two Witnesses come first, being resurrected into glorified bodies in the middle of the tribulation.
I hope that helps =)
You really do see things a whole lot differently than I do. I think you’re stretching the idea of the resurrection from the dead to the outer limits and I do mean as in Rod Serling’s “Outer Limits.” ( 🙂 –couldn’t help myself!) I’m just not with you on your interpretation of 1 Cor. 15 or Rev. 20.
“The Rapture is ‘part’ of the First Resurrection, not the the end of it. It is a member stage of the First Resurrection, or one of the orders Paul speaks of. It is not the ‘end’ or completion of the First Resurrection. Only after the Trib saints are resurrected (Rev. 20:4) is the First Resurrectiong (unto Life) complete.”
I agree with your statement that only after the tribulation saints are at the full number will the first resurrection take place. But; I also believe that the first resurrection refers to the rapture and there is no other resurrection intended to be included in that event. The manner in which our Lord receives us to Himself is such a fantabulous occurance that Paul called it a mystery. That there would be a resurrection of the dead was known already and those who knew the First Testament Scriptures were familiar with the expectations of the Jews. The Pharisees believed in the resurrection as did Paul, (obviously). The new converts to the Gospel weren’t well schooled in apologetics but Paul had been teaching them the Scriptures, is what I think. He gives them an outline “assuming” in reference that they had an idea of what he was talking about. So the inference was that Christ fulfilled the Feast of Firstfruits when He was raised from the dead for our justification. He was the first and wholely pure offering to the Father from the field of mankind, so to speak. I don’t see how His resurrection is related to the “first resurrection” that’s distinquished from all others in chapter 20 of the book of Revelation. He “is the resurrection, the way and the life.” He’s the one “effecting” the first resurrection by His “appearing” at the end of the tribulation.
This is what Paul says:
1Cr 15:21 For as by a man came death, by a man has come also the resurrection of the dead.
1Cr 15:22 For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ shall all be made alive.
1Cr 15:23 But each in his own order: Christ the firstfruits, then at his coming those who belong to Christ.
Paul barely even takes a breath when he says, “Christ, the firstfruits, ‘then at His coming’ (parousia) those who belong to Him.” It’s all stated in the same sentence and is not broken up by anything else inbetween. It’s one complete thought and is stated as such. I don’t see any room for squeezing in any other resurrections. There’s one resurrection, en masse, of the Body of the Church when the Lord returns. We all put on immortality at the same time. He’s saying we’re not taken individually and made to exchange this fleshly body for a spiritual body. The mystery is that it’s going to happen all at once–at the last trumpet blast, in the twinkling of an eye we’ll all be changed at the same time! Wonderful that we don’t have to stand in line! Can you imagine that? It’d take more than a thousand years! 🙂
When Paul was alone at Mt. Sinai in Arabia, he was given revelations that the other Apostles were not. He goes out of his way to keep from letting pride get the better of him but he wanted to share the manner in which the resurrection of the righteous would take place. That’s what he does in his letter to the Corinthians. He shares with them the mystery of the resurrection of the dead, which will comprise only those who make up the Body of Christ, whether dead or alive. Paul tells them who it involves, how it transpires and what to expect, that’s it.
John tells us in the book of Revelation that the wicked remain in their graves for another 1000 years. I know this because John tells us in Rev. 20:5 Those in the first resurrection are “blessed and holy” as you said. The resurrection of all others is to the throne judgment, that’s the second resurrection. There’s no need to squeeze any inconsequential resurrections into Scripture where it’s not even hinted at as far as having anything to do with the rapture (the first resurrection) of the Church–which is a one time only event. You’re trying too hard to do away with Rev. chapter 20 and would have us believe that “first” doesn’t mean first and that “second” really means the sixth or something like that. I just don’t see it. The thing is, I see the “first resurrection” as being the rapture of the Church and you don’t. You have to find a way to explain Rev. 20 and the innumerable number of people praising God.
Rev 20:4 Then I saw thrones, and seated on them were those to whom the authority to judge was committed. Also I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded for the testimony of Jesus and for the word of God, and those who had not worshiped the beast or its image and had not received its mark on their foreheads or their hands. They came to life and reigned with Christ for a thousand years.
Rev 20:5 The rest of the dead did not come to life until the thousand years were ended.
“This is the first resurrection.”
Rev 20:6 Blessed and holy is the one who shares in the first resurrection! Over such the second death has no power, but they will be priests of God and of Christ, and they will reign with him for a thousand years.
That’s my thoughts on it for now.
1Cr 15:52 in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we shall be changed.
“I also believe that the first resurrection refers to the rapture and there is no other resurrection intended to be included in that event…. I don’t see how His resurrection is related to the “first resurrection” that’s distinquished from all others in chapter 20 of the book of Revelation.”
– Yes, the First Resurrection refers to the rapture. It also refers to Messiah’s resurrection, the OT saints resurrection, the Two Witnesses resurrection and the Tribulation saints resurrection. It’s all right there in Scripture.
You gave support to this fact when you said,
“Paul barely even takes a breath when he says, “Christ, the firstfruits, ‘then at His coming’ (parousia) those who belong to Him.” It’s all stated in the same sentence and is not broken up by anything else inbetween. It’s one complete thought and is stated as such.”
– Which was my point exactly. It’s the same resurrection. After all, we were crucified with Christ, and so are we raised with him. If His wasn’t the first, which was it? His was the first, and so it is blessed and we are partakers with Him in that first resurrection even though we experience it at a later time. That is why He is the First-Fruits, so that He may have preeminence in all things.
“Wonderful that we don’t have to stand in line! Can you imagine that? It’d take more than a thousand years!”
– You just set up a straw man arguement to knock down. No where in any of my posts did I hint at the idea that we would be raised one at a time, or stand in a line. I did discuss Paul use of the term “order” which has the meaning of a military troop (many soldiers comprise one troop). When the Church is Raptured, that entire order (troop) gets raised at the same time. So it not individuals, but orders.
“He’s the one “effecting” the first resurrection by His “appearing” at the end of the tribulation.”
– You have moved His “appearing” to the end of the Tribulation when there is no reference to His appearing there. His appearing takes place before the Tribulation. I know you don’t make the distinction between His appearing and His coming, but there is no reference to His appearing at the end of Revelation.
“There’s no need to squeeze any inconsequential resurrections into Scripture where it’s not even hinted at as far as having anything to do with the rapture (the first resurrection) of the Church–which is a one time only event.”
– A few things: Revelation 20 only mentions the resurrection of those beheaded during the Tribulation, those who rejected the mark of the beast. ‘They’ lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years. Only they are mentioned there because the Church saints are already resurrected and with Christ.
You have yet to deal with the Two Witnesses. Do they get a pre-First Resurrection resurrection? They are bodily raised and taken into heaven in the sight of all (glorified and alive).
“You’re trying too hard to do away with Rev. chapter 20”
I am dealing with it extensively, really looking at what it says. Your understanding seems to be isolating this text and not taking into consideration the related passages which shed light on the events of this chapter. And not seeing who is being spoken of in the context of the chapter.
“I see the “first resurrection” as being the rapture of the Church and you don’t. You have to find a way to explain Rev. 20 and the innumerable number of people praising God.”
– Actually it’s the exact opposite. I do see the rapture of the Church as being the First Resurrection. Regading the “innumerable number of people praising God” let’s look at Revelation 7:9,14:
9 After these things I saw, and behold, a great multitude, which no man could number, out of every nation and of all tribes and peoples and tongues, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, arrayed in white robes, and palms in their hands;
14 And I say unto him, My lord, thou knowest. And he said to me, These are they that come of the great tribulation, and they washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.
These are the same people that are described in Revelation 20, those who were beheaded during the Tribulation and did not worship the beast. Are they Church saints? No, because they are described as only being the ones that died during the “Great Tribulation” (v.14).
Compare verse 14 with Rev. 20:4:
4 And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them: and I saw the souls of them that had been beheaded for the testimony of Jesus, and for the word of God, and such as worshipped not the beast, neither his image, and received not the mark upon their forehead and upon their hand; and they lived, and reigned with Christ a thousand years.
They describe the same group of people, only those of the Tribulation. So I think in sincerity, you need to find a way to explain Rev. 20 and the innumberable number of people in Rev. 7. It’s very clear who is being spoken of.
You quoted 1st Corinthians 15:52, and equated Paul’s last trump to the 7th trumpet judgment of Revelation. I have shown that Paul is not speaking of the 7th trumpet judgment. Assuming that he is, here is the implication:
The Seventh Trumpet Judgment takes place at the end of the ‘First-Half of the Tribulation’. There are 3 1/2 years after the 7th Trumpet Sounds. The 7th Trumpet contains and unleashes the Seven Bowl Judgments. So in essence the 7th Trumpet unleashes events that happen for the next 3 1/2 years. Scripture even declares this:
ESV: Revelation 10:7
7 but that in the days of the trumpet call to be sounded by the seventh angel, the mystery of God would be fulfilled, just as he announced to his servants the prophets.
7 But in the days of the voice of the seventh angel, when he shall begin to sound, the mystery of God should be finished, as he hath declared to his servants the prophets.
This verse clearly tells us that the sounding of the seventh trumpet will span a length of time by using the plural ‘days’. We also know this to be true because the seventh trumpet unleashes the seven bowl judgment. This seventh trumpet is also sounded at the mid point of the Tribulation.
I will end this post here since its getting long.
The strength of the pre-trib position is the recognition of distinctions in who is being spoken of.
I liked something Peter Pellerin said in his first post:
“I believe the pre trib rapture has much greater explanatory power and it is hinted at in the text in many places. It allows a more straightforward interpretation of Revelation and the OT prophets.”
You gave me a lot more new information to think about and that’s what I’m going to do. I’ve got my niece coming to visit this weekend so I’m taking a few days for family.
I’ve never heard the things you’ve laid out before so it’s going to take a more thorough reading of what you’ve presented before I can follow you better. It’s just me I guess, when I think I understand you I realize that other things would have to be true in order for the whole of the prophecies to come together in a reasonable way and that starts me down other paths that only confuses the issue even more.
I certainly don’t have my post-trib views worked out in such minute detail. I have an overall idea of what Scripture seems to say but you’ve got it worked out in much greater depth so it has to all fit together before I can see the picture clearly. I should back up about a half dozen posts and start anew!
In fact, that’s exactly what I need to do.
I hope you have a wonderful weekend! I’ll pick it up as soon as I can.
I remain your sister in Christ.
[Howdy, LOF. Spied the following on the net. Would love to see reactions. Lord reward you all.]
Pretrib Rapture Pride
Pretrib rapture promoters like Thomas Ice give the impression they know more than the early Church Fathers, the Reformers, the greatest Greek New Testament scholars including those who produced the KJV Bible, the founders of their favorite Bible schools, and even their own mentors!
Ice’s mentor, Dallas Sem. president John Walvoord, couldn’t find anyone holding to pretrib before 1830 – and Walvoord called John Darby and his Brethren followers “the early pretribulationists” (RQ, pp. 160-62). Ice belittles Walvoord and claims that several pre-1830 persons, including “Pseudo-Ephraem” and a “Rev. Morgan Edwards,” taught a pretrib rapture. Even though the first one viewed Antichrist’s arrival as the only “imminent” event, Ice (and Grant Jeffrey) audaciously claim he expected an “imminent” pretrib rapture! And Ice (and John Bray) have covered up Edwards’ historicism which made a pretrib rapture impossible! Google “Morgan Edwards’ Rapture View” and journalist/historian Dave MacPherson’s “Deceiving and Being Deceived” for documentation on these and similar historical distortions.
The same pretrib defenders, when combing ancient books, deviously read “pretrib” into phrases like “before Armageddon,” “before the final conflagration,” and “escape all these things”!
BTW, the KJV translators’ other writings found in London’s famed British Library (where MacPherson has researched) don’t have even a hint of pretrib rapturism. Is it possible that Ice etc. have found pretrib “proof” in the KJV that its translators never found?
Pretrib merchandisers like Ice claim that nothing is better pretrib proof than Rev. 3:10. They also cover up “Famous Rapture Watchers” (on Google) which shows how the greatest Greek NT scholars of all time interpreted it.
Pretrib didn’t flourish in America much before the 1909 Scofield Bible which has pretribby “explanatory notes” in its margins. Not seen in the margins was jailed forger Scofield’s criminal record throughout his life that David Lutzweiler has documented in his recent book “The Praise of Folly” which is available online.
Biola University’s doctrinal statement says Christ’s return is “premillennial” and “before the Tribulation.” Although universities stand for “academic freedom,” Biola has added these narrow, restrictive phrases – non-essentials the founders purposely didn’t include in their original doctrinal statement when Biola was just a small Bible institute! And other Christian schools have also belittled their founders.
Ice, BTW, has a “Ph.D” issued by a tiny Texas school that wasn’t authorized to issue degrees! Ice now says that he’s working on another “Ph.D” via the University of Wales in Britain. For light on the degrees of Ice’s scholarliness, Google “Bogus degree scandal prompts calls to wind up University of Wales,” “Thomas Ice (Bloopers),” “be careful in polemics – Peripatetic Learning,” and “Walvoord Melts Ice.” Also Google “Thomas Ice (Hired Gun)” – featured by media luminary Joe Ortiz on his Jan. 30, 2013 “End Times Passover” blog.
Other fascinating Google articles include “The Unoriginal John Darby,” “X-raying Margaret,” “Margaret Macdonald’s Rapture Chart,” “Pretrib Rapture’s Missing Lines,” “Edward Irving is Unnerving,” “Pretrib Rapture Politics,” “Pretrib Rapture Secrets,” “Pretrib Rapture Dishonesty,” “Pretrib Hypocrisy,” “Pretrib Rapture Secrecy,” and “Roots of Warlike Christian Zionism” – most from the author of “The Rapture Plot” (the most accurate documentation on pretrib rapture history) which can be obtained by calling 800.643.4645.
Can anyone guess who the last proud pretrib rapture holdout will be?
(Postscript: For another jolt or two Google “The Background Obama Can’t Cover Up.”)
I hadn’t checked the site here all weekend so when I saw your comment just now it was very coincidental because I too am going to be taking some time off. I am going up to Manitoba, Canada with an Uncle and some other folks for a fishing trip. I’m leaving on July 3rd and will not be back in town (to a computer) till July 12th.
Enjoy your time with your neice and family. I’ll check back in after the 12th.
Sorry for the long delay. I spent just over a week out of town. And a few days after I got back my Mother had a minor heart-attack and was hospitalized for 4 days or so. She is now out and home and doing well (for the most part). So I haven’t had much time lately to peruse the forums. But things have settled back down a bit so I may have time again to get back into things.
I’ll post again soon.
I had not considered a “pretrib” rapture, until two of my friends said they believed it. So, I asked the Lord to show me evidence of it, and He directed me to Matthew 24:38, Jesus tells his disciples that His coming will be like the days of Noah. So, I went back and read about Noah. Genesis 7:1-10, basically says that Noah and all his family, etc. was told to enter the ark 7 days before, the Lord brought the flood upon the earth. Noah, found grace in God’s sight and was set at safety before the flood started. 7 days-7 years?
After which, he begins talking about judging his servants, good and faithful or not, and not until after He judges His servants does He come in His glory with all His holy angels to sit upon His throne and judge the nations. It seems apparent that there are 2 different things going on.
The problem with your idea is the context of Messiah’s words.
21 For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be.
22 And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect’s sake those days shall be shortened.
23 Then if any man shall say unto you, Lo, here is Christ, or there; believe it not.
24 For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect.
25 Behold, I have told you before…
37 But as the days of Noe were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.
38 For as in the days that were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noe entered into the ark,
39 And knew not until the flood came, and took them all away; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.
40 Then shall two be in the field; the one shall be taken, and the other left.
41 Two women shall be grinding at the mill; the one shall be taken, and the other left.
42 Watch therefore: for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come.
43 But know this, that if the goodman of the house had known in what watch the thief would come, he would have watched, and would not have suffered his house to be broken up.
44 Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh.
45 Who then is a faithful and wise servant, whom his lord hath made ruler over his household, to give them meat in due season?
46 Blessed is that servant, whom his lord when he cometh shall find so doing.
47 Verily I say unto you, That he shall make him ruler over all his goods.
48 But and if that evil servant shall say in his heart, My lord delayeth his coming;
49 And shall begin to smite his fellowservants, and to eat and drink with the drunken;
50 The lord of that servant shall come in a day when he looketh not for him, and in an hour that he is not aware of,
51 And shall cut him asunder, and appoint him his portion with the hypocrites: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
It is about being caught unaware. Yes Noah was in the ark before the flood came, but the people that were caught off guard were taken away by the flood. Who is taken away in the above passage? The wicked,not the righteous. The parallel is that the wicked are taken away. The whole idea is that that day (“the day of the lord”) catches the unrighteous unaware and because of what seems to be a delay (120 years in Noah’s case…maybe only 7 years in our case), some believers will loose heart and give up walking in righteousness and will receive the same punishment as unbelievers.
Thinking that there will be a pre-tribulation rapture may cause those that find themselves in tribulation to give up and be fooled into eating and drinking with the drunken and such. Preparing oneself spiritually for going through the tribulation by enduring much hardship and practicing patience in our present light afflictions seems like a much better approach than putting our trust in an escape theory that relies on an obscure 7 days = 7 years idea.
All through scripture the idea of the “Day of the Lord” is about judgment/tribulation. There is no way for that day to come upon us unaware if we have been raptured out years before. Therefore there would be no reason for the warning that that day might catch us unaware.
The days of tribulation are said to be shortened for the sake of the very elect. If they are not here experiencing the tribulation, there is no reason to shorten those days. It will be a very deceitful time…so deceitful that the very elect are almost fooled. If they are gone up to heaven, how could they be fooled?
There is much more that could be said, but this is all I have time for at present.
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