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The Not So Secret Rapture ^ | W. Fred Rice

Posted on 01/14/2011 5:57:52 PM PST by topcat54

Evangelical book catalogs promote books such as Planet Earth: The Final Chapter, The Great Escape, and the Left Behind series. Bumper stickers warn us that the vehicle’s occupants may disappear at any moment. It is clear that there is a preoccupation with the idea of a secret rapture. Perhaps this has become more pronounced recently due to the expectation of a new millennium and the fears regarding potential Y2K problems. Perhaps psychologically people are especially receptive to the idea of an imminent, secret rapture at the present time. Additionally, many Christians are not aware that any other position relative to the second coming of Jesus Christ exists. Even in Reformed circles there are numerous people reading these books. Many of these people are unaware that this viewpoint conflicts with Scripture and Reformed Theology.

(Excerpt) Read more at ...

TOPICS: Theology
KEYWORDS: crusades; endtimes; eschatology; rapture
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To: betty boop
Thank you so much for sharing those quotes and especially your insights, dearest sister in Christ! Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. - James 4:7

2,521 posted on 02/01/2011 11:29:15 AM PST by Alamo-Girl
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To: Dr. Eckleburg
Thank you so much for those beautiful Scriptures and your testimony, dear sister in Christ!

And I'm very glad indeed that you are pleased with the "bakery shop kids." LOLOL!

Then he answered and spake unto me, saying, This [is] the word of the LORD unto Zerubbabel, saying, Not by might, nor by power, but by my spirit, saith the LORD of hosts. - Zec 4:6

But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his. - Romans 8:9

It has everything to do with Who God IS.

To God be the glory, not man, never man.

2,522 posted on 02/01/2011 11:37:07 AM PST by Alamo-Girl
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To: daniel1212
re: Calvinist or Arminian -- recently Cronos used "Arminian" in a list of Protestant denominations, something like "Baptists, Presbyterians, Arminians, Methodists..."

Dictionaries often cure this error.

God willing. 8~)

2,523 posted on 02/01/2011 11:37:29 AM PST by Dr. Eckleburg ("I don't think they want my respect; I think they want my submission." - Flemming Rose)
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To: Alamo-Girl
"... This [is] the word of the LORD unto Zerubbabel, saying, Not by might, nor by power, but by my spirit, saith the LORD of hosts. - Zec 4:6

AMEN. Christ, hidden in the Old Testament, revealed in the new.

"So then it is not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of God that sheweth mercy." -- Romans 9:16

I love to read where the OT so clearly parallels the New Testament. All one book.

"Now to him that is of power to stablish you according to my gospel, and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery, which was kept secret since the world began,

But now is made manifest, and by the scriptures of the prophets, according to the commandment of the everlasting God, made known to all nations for the obedience of faith:

To God only wise, be glory through Jesus Christ for ever. Amen." -- Romans 16:25-27

2,524 posted on 02/01/2011 11:47:21 AM PST by Dr. Eckleburg ("I don't think they want my respect; I think they want my submission." - Flemming Rose)
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To: metmom; presently no screen name; 1000 silverlings; Alex Murphy; bkaycee; blue-duncan; boatbums
It appears that the distinction you're failing to make, is between the type of sin and the consequence of sin

It's a distinction without difference. Protestant theology says that, after being "saved," a believer cannot lose his salvation no matter what sin he commits, because his sins (past, present and future) have been forgiven. Therefore his sin counts for naught.

2,525 posted on 02/01/2011 12:10:12 PM PST by kosta50 ("Spirit of Spirit....give me over to immortal birth so that I may be born again" -- pagan prayer)
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To: betty boop; Cronos; Alamo-Girl; xzins; HarleyD; kosta50; MarkBsnr

bb: Seems to me demons do exist; and the best way to deal with them is as Luther and More direct: Simply dismiss them by ridicule. This saves one from “obsessing” about them....

Spirited: The same holds true for the Devil’s “human tools.”

2,526 posted on 02/01/2011 12:13:46 PM PST by spirited irish
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To: Cronos; Alamo-Girl; metmom; xzins; caww; kosta50; boatbums; James C. Bennett; YHAOS
To answer betty's question — the Jains argue that all are subject to the laws of the universe and that it is illogical to argue for a being that exists out of it.

And yet Aristotle argued for a first uncaused cause as the "prime mover" of the universe. Because this cause is "uncaused" in principle, it cannot arise from a purely natural source; i.e., a spatio-temporal one rising from "inside" the system of nature.

FWIW, it appears to me that the structure of the universe is not a sui-generis natural development, not a product of "nature." I.e., it is not something spontaneously generated by the phenomena to which it applies. Plus Aristotle spoke of a final cause — a purpose, goal or limit — towards which all causation in the universe ultimately tends.

Or to put it another way, the universe does not generate its own "rules." It is not the spontaneous product of an unguided emergence from an eternal, primordial chaos.

Anyhoot, my point is that the natural sciences do not rely on the insights of the Jains. Rather, they are largely premised in Aristotlian logic and his theory of causation. Please let me further qualify what I mean by the natural sciences: they are systematic, experimental, and based on inductive methods (ever since Bacon). In this sense, they are arguably products of the Western approach, not of the Eastern.

But this "East" and "West" divide — what to make of it? You wrote, "While Maths did originate in the East (from the Babylonian concepts of 360 degress of a circle to the Hindu discovery of 0, Natural Sciences too had their origins in the Near East — India, with the extensions into Greece (mainland Greece didn't get civilised until the fall of the Minoans on Crete c. 1700 BC IMHO). The Indians concentrated on maths, metallurgy and medicine."

Some thoughts. I'm aware that the world-changing "discovery" of 0 (zero) occurred in the Indus Valley sometime in the fourth century A.D. (IIRC). The Arabs subsequently incorporated it into their system of numbers, from whence it spread everywhere.... What an epiphany for the mathematical mind who first conceived this amazing idea! (Unfortunately I do not now recall his name.) But I have a question: In what way did Hindu or Buddhist thought — neither of which seems to make either mind or reason even topical — shape this outcome?

Plus regarding this "East–West" quandary: I just finished reading an interesting book by Richard Geldart, Remembering Heralitus (2000), wherein he "re-members" Heraclitus by interpreting his all-too-sparse fragments in the light of Advaita-Vedanta (Hindu) philosophy — on the grounds that Heraclitus was from Ephesus, then a thriving commercial center and sort of intellectual crossroads of the day. So Geldart's conclusion is Heraclitus not only knew of Advaita-Vedanta thought, but that it was seminal in his own thinking. (I am not entirely persuaded by this view, FWIW.)

Plus here's another such quandary: Pythagoras, reportedly studied 20 years with the High Priests of Egypt (remarkable astronomers among other things), and also with the Chaldeans (historical Babylon).... So was he "East" or "West?"

What does seem clear to me that both Pythagoras and Heraclitus were major influences for Plato, and from him through his student and colleague Aristotle unto the present age of Western culture and civilization....

I just claim all four of these august personages for the West.... LOL!

Thank you so very much for your outstanding essay/posts on Eastern philosophical traditions, dear Cronos!

2,527 posted on 02/01/2011 12:24:17 PM PST by betty boop (Seek truth and beauty together; you will never find them apart. — F. M. Cornford)
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To: Dr. Eckleburg; Alamo-Girl; MarkBsnr; Quix; investigateworld; xzins; metmom; HarleyD; Iscool; ...
Is not satan more powerful than any man?

I wonder why MarkBnsr would think that Jesus would have had any difficulty whatever in resisting Satan's temptations — "It took all that Jesus had to withstand satan, no?"

The short answer: NO. Satan has zero power over us — unless we give him power over us by falling for his blandishments....

Does Mark really think the Son of God — Logos, Alpha and Omega — quails before the supposed power of the Father of Lies?

Thank you ever so much for writing, Dr. E, and for the ping to your outstanding essay/post!

2,528 posted on 02/01/2011 12:39:17 PM PST by betty boop (Seek truth and beauty together; you will never find them apart. — F. M. Cornford)
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To: Cronos

Then your argument here would seem to be with Mark, not with those who are broad brushed as ambivalent toward sin or as Alberto Rivera conspiratorialists.

2,529 posted on 02/01/2011 1:06:34 PM PST by daniel1212 ( "Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out," Acts 3:19)
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To: Cronos; MarkBsnr; HossB86; Dr. Eckleburg
he has just pointed out that the Bible being an inanimate non-decision making entity is neither fallible nor infallible.

Could you please find for me a early church father's writing that calls the scriptures an "inanimate non-decision making entity"? Nor do I remember the church fathers in their councils saying,

Honestly, this sounds like more spin then a Laundromat.

BTW-I'd be careful who you're calling a comment "stupid" especially when you just call the Rel Mod on Dr. E for saying a comment is "idiotic". Not that I mind but Dr. E clearly has a bit more class. It's the ol' log in your own eye if you know what I mean.

2,530 posted on 02/01/2011 1:10:27 PM PST by HarleyD
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To: Cronos; HossB86; MarkBsnr
If you are in any way seriously discussing, you have to admit that an internet, unscientific poll of 41 people is hardly any better than a show of hands at a discussion club

According to my most recent survey one person on this site stated the scriptures to be infallible (you) and one stated the scriptures were not infallible (Mark). That gives me a 50% ratio. There, now you have two polls that says the same thing. Feel better?

2,531 posted on 02/01/2011 1:23:08 PM PST by HarleyD
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To: Cronos; Dr. Eckleburg; Religion Moderator
I have no intention of stooping to that level. I'll just post excerpts from the opc website that talk about how they consider Arminians as d*mnable heresy

Rarely do I call the Religion Moderator but this is a bit over the top. Please see my post at 2530 about post 2481 and 2482.

2,532 posted on 02/01/2011 1:30:08 PM PST by HarleyD
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To: spirited irish; Cronos; Alamo-Girl; xzins; HarleyD; kosta50; MarkBsnr; YHAOS; MHGinTN; Quix; ...
The same holds true for the Devil’s “human tools.”

And yet it seems we cannot press too far in that direction, for two reasons.

First, in the divine economy, to "dishonor" one's neighbor ultimately is to dishonor one's self.

Second, we cannot ever treat our correspondent as a mere bug to be squashed. For we have no way of knowing whether "today's 'bug'" might not turn out to be "tomorrow's 'saint.'"

Only God, Who sees from the eternal now, can know such things. Thus it seems to me we should simply just leave the issue to Him....

Our human duty is to love our neighbor as ourself. One would think that would be easy; but the fact is, it's hard....

Probably the best thing is to avoid "obsessing" of all kinds, and simply "let go and let God"....

Being guided by the Light of His Truth. No darkness can prevail against that.

2,533 posted on 02/01/2011 1:33:47 PM PST by betty boop (Seek truth and beauty together; you will never find them apart. — F. M. Cornford)
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To: kosta50; 1000 silverlings; Alex Murphy; bkaycee; blue-duncan; boatbums; caww; count-your-change; ...
Romans 4:1-8 1What then shall we say was gained by Abraham, our forefather according to the flesh? For if Abraham was justified by works, he has something to boast about, but not before God. For what does the Scripture say? "Abraham believed God, and it was counted to him as righteousness." Now to the one who works, his wages are not counted as a gift but as his due. And to the one who does not work but believes in him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is counted as righteousness, just as David also speaks of the blessing of the one to whom God counts righteousness apart from works:
"Blessed are those whose lawless deeds are forgiven, and whose sins are covered; blessed is the man against whom the Lord will not count his sin."

Our sins is NOT counted against us. That's what happens when one is forgiven.

That's what makes the grace of God so great.

It's the only way to keep our sins from bringing us down into the pit.

Since we can't earn forgiveness nor pay the debt we owe for our sin, God's mercy granted in the form of forgiveness is the only way.

And it's free for the taking, by any one any time because God is no respecter of persons.

2,534 posted on 02/01/2011 1:43:05 PM PST by metmom (Welfare was never meant to be a career choice.)
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To: Cronos

There is a difference between Christians and non-Christians. Christians like CAtholics, Orthodox, Lutherans, Presbyterians, Anglicans, Pentecostals, Baptists etc. all believe that Jesus Christ IS God. Non-Christians don’t believe Jesus Christ is God.

If you want more biblical proof that Jesus Christ is God besides the ones I have already given you, I can give you more.

The devil knows who Jesus is too that still doesn’t make him saved .

There is way to many people who call themselves Christians when in reality they are not since they do not believe the WORD and do not have a relationship with him .These people may be part of Christendom but they are not Christians.

These are people who choose to build their house on sand instead of the ROCK (and that ROCK is Jesus - not any mortal man )And because they choose to build not on the ROCK but sand THEY DON’T KNOW HIM.

Why don’t they know him , because they refuse to call out to him ... they don’t want to humble themselves.
They prefer to rely on anything and everything else to save to they fall for the lies.

Yes the devil knows exactly who Jesus is .

2,535 posted on 02/01/2011 2:16:31 PM PST by Lera
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To: HarleyD; Cronos; Dr. Eckleburg
On "open" Religion Forum threads, there is no guideline prohibiting a poster from saying that a belief, article or statement is "stupid" or "idiotic" or "heresy" or even "damnable."

HOWEVER, if such words are being used repeatedly to characterize another poster's remarks then it is clearly making the thread "about" that poster - which is "making it personal" and "flame baiting."

Discuss the issues all you want, but do not make it personal.

2,536 posted on 02/01/2011 2:49:27 PM PST by Religion Moderator
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To: metmom; kosta50; betty boop; spirited irish; Alamo-Girl; xzins; HarleyD; James C. Bennett
God wishes all to come to repentance, but sometimes He gives people what they want.

Which leads me to sometimes think that when a person declares that God does not exist and that one’s earthly life ends in eternal oblivion, then God, having desired mankind be possessed of free will, does not interfere in that person’s belief. Theologians argue over this idea, but the thought strikes me as entirely appropriate and consistent with Free Will.

2,537 posted on 02/01/2011 3:16:51 PM PST by YHAOS (you betcha!)
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To: Cronos; Dr. Eckleburg; Lera; metmom
they say that Arminianism (preached by Methodists, Pentecostals etc.) "is a damnable heresy" showing that they consider Pentecostals, Methodists etc. as "preaching a satanic gospel"

Oh, not unlike the Catholics, who say everybody who is not Catholic is doomed to an eternity in Hell?

2,538 posted on 02/01/2011 3:19:38 PM PST by boatbums (God is ready to assume full responsibility for the life wholly yielded to him.)
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To: daniel1212
I was trying to reconcile your denial of the infallibility of Scripture with what Rome has historically held to, such as what LAMENTABILI SANE Pius X taught in condemning the proposition that “Divine inspiration does not extend to all of Sacred Scriptures so that it renders its parts, each and every one, free from every error.”

It has to do with not only the words but with the interpretation of them. If I can defend a heresy using only Scriptural quotations, then the idea that the Bible cannot teach wrong is rendered invalid.

As for “Why do you guys keep going on about Rome?” and your statement that “the not headquartered at Rome,” it is because your fellow RCs basically tell us that it is (capital C) and the rest need to submit to here. One prolific RC poster recently told me that for a liberal Catholic like John Kerry to leave the RCC and become a conservative evangelical would be like the fall of Adam and a step toward death.

Which ones? The Church is not headquartered in Rome. The Roman Catholic bishop is stationed in the Vatican, just like any other bishop is stationed somewhere. For example, the bishop of the New York City archdiocese is stationed where? New York City. And so on. I have no idea who this prolific Catholic poster is, but I do not believe that John Kerry is likely to become a conservative Evangelical.

Regarding your distinction btwn “infallible and “inerrant,’ I read ( that according to the Oxford English Dictionary, it was not until 1837 that the English word inerrant was used in the modern sense of exempt from error, free from mistake, infallible. Thus, as JI Packer wrote, “Previously, the preferred term for expressing the conviction that Scripture never misinforms or misleads was infallibility…” (Inerrancy and the Church, 144),

The English language has changed its nuances over the the 300 years between the Reformation and this encyclical. The Church needed to provide a clear definition to people which, again, showed that people could defend old, or even derive new, heresies from Scriptural points.

For example, Oneness Pentecostals deny the Trinity and prove it from Scripture. The Branch Davidians used Scripture exclusively. So do all these cults.

As for printed words not being infallible in the sense that the RC magisterium is said to be, (exemption from the possibility of error) Script-ure is affirmed to be wholly inspired of God, and what was written sometimes had no oral stage.

Wholly inspired. Not wholly dictated. We understand that the Torah was dictated, because of Jewish Tradition and because the OT says it. It does not say that anywhere in the NT or even the rest of the Tanakh. And even so, these words may be taken out of context and used to come up with different conclusions, beliefs and theologies. As we see in the knotted spaghetti mess of the evolution of the Protestants since the Reformation.

If you are referring to the need for a interpreter, as my 2190 post points out, “infallible” pronouncements themselves need some interpretation.

This does lead to somewhat of an agreement inasmuch as somebody needs to interpret these words - either the Church Magisterium or somebody else, often in the comfort of their own home.

But the problem is not that the interpretation of these words may be infallible in themselves, but the formulaic assured status Rome infallibly claims she has as the uniquely supreme interpreter.

We believe that that is the responsibility of the Church - the teaching (and therefore interpreting) body given it by Christ.

2,539 posted on 02/01/2011 3:20:04 PM PST by MarkBsnr (I would not believe in the Gospel if the authority of the Catholic Church did not move me to do so..)
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To: Religion Moderator; HarleyD; Cronos

Thanks, RM. I’m putting your comment regarding the rules on my homepage.

2,540 posted on 02/01/2011 3:42:06 PM PST by Dr. Eckleburg ("I don't think they want my respect; I think they want my submission." - Flemming Rose)
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