How important is End Times theology?

Batfan7

Well-Known Member
So, I asked my pastor yesterday what he thought of the End Times. I asked because he'd made some off-hand negative comments about the Left Behind book series (not from the pulpit, just in a small group setting), but in the 3 years we've been here, there's never been a sermon on that topic, so I asked.

His response was, "I am not dispensational, I am not pre-trib or ammilennial. I believe the first 20 or so chapters of Revelation all happened during ancient Roman times. And I don't believe it really matters because there's nothing anyone can do to effect what happens before or during Jesus' return."

Okay, so, while I completely disagree with his view, I'm left to ponder whether this is truly a vital thing or not. We won't be given a quiz at death that asks us to define our end times beliefs and if we get it wrong, what are the consequences?

I am one of those people that think that unless an issue is a salvation issue, then there is room for variation within God's family. There's room for believers to have different taste in music, to interpret parables differently, to see Creation differently (although, obviously I possess the most correct truth, right? :ahaha)

Anyway, my point is, while I disagree about this issue, I'm not sure it's enough to do anything about.

Thoughts?
 
Personally, if a pastor isn't privy to the season we are in, and does not teach biblical eschatology, I think they are doing a huge disservice to the body. First of all, some people will get saved if they learn about it when they otherwise would not. I'm one of those people. They are not doing their job to preach the whole counsel of God and souls are in jeopardy as a result.

Second, I want to attend a church that will help me get ready for Christ and to support a pastor that likewise warns, informs, and prepares the body. But how can a pastor adequately prepare one for what is coming if they don't believe?

For these reasons, I always ask about eschatology when choosing a church, and it matters to me. Nonetheless, my church is one where the pastor has picked sermon series that doesn't include prophecy but I know he believes. But I'm too far from churches that would be a closer match, so I do what I can in deciding who/where to support.
 

athenasius

Well-Known Member
I suspect he is what is known as a preterist. Of the partial preterist type.

And if that all happened up to the end of Chapter 19, then when were the kings assembled in v 19 against Christ, and when was the beast (the AC) and the False Prophet seized and thrown alive into the lake of fire. That's v 20 of ch 19. And then v 21 has all the enemies of Christ killed by the sword of HIS MOUTH.

Preterism argues that everything prophetic has already happened, and they often call Nero the A/C. They hate dispensationalist theology because it makes better sense and that is embarrassing. Partial preterists are still looking for Christ's return and millennial reign, so that statement that he is NOT amillenial might mean partial preterist.

Pre trib people are usually dispensationalists. So again, that looks like preterist or partial preterism in your pastor.

Problem is a large part of the Bible is prophecy from Genesis (God speaking of the seed of the woman) to Revelation (where chapter 20 has Satan bound and thrown into the pit). If your pastor is unwilling or unable to teach these passages then you might not fit there much longer. And if he includes chapter 20 like he sounds he does, then we are IN the millennium because that is the chapter of the millennium! Chapter 21 is the new heavens and earth AFTER the millennium!!!! His theology has holes you can drive trucks thru.

After all if this is what it looks like when Satan is bound, then this is pretty weird stuff going on nowadays. And if the Church is gaining strength against evil, bringing it under the dominion of Christ, then they are doing a dreadful job of it. And worse if he really does think all of Chapter 20 has already happened, then this is not exactly the millennial reign of Christ that fulfills the OTHER prophecies in scripture and sorry to say, Isaiah 11:6-8 is looking pretty weird.

What to do next is pray and seek the Lord about finding a church and a pastor who do share your convictions and beliefs and who don't toss the huge amount of the Bible that is prophecy into a trash bin of "we can't understand it, or it was already fulfilled therefore we ignore it".

Here is Isaiah 11:6-8 bolded KJV

1 And there shall come forth a rod out of the stem of Jesse, and a Branch shall grow out of his roots:

2 And the spirit of the Lord shall rest upon him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the Lord;

3 And shall make him of quick understanding in the fear of the Lord: and he shall not judge after the sight of his eyes, neither reprove after the hearing of his ears:

4 But with righteousness shall he judge the poor, and reprove with equity for the meek of the earth: and he shall smite the earth: with the rod of his mouth, and with the breath of his lips shall he slay the wicked.

5 And righteousness shall be the girdle of his loins, and faithfulness the girdle of his reins.


6 The wolf also shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the kid; and the calf and the young lion and the fatling together; and a little child shall lead them.


7 And the cow and the bear shall feed; their young ones shall lie down together: and the lion shall eat straw like the ox.


8 And the sucking child shall play on the hole of the asp, and the weaned child shall put his hand on the cockatrice' den.


9 They shall not hurt nor destroy in all my holy mountain: for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the Lord, as the waters cover the sea.

10 And in that day there shall be a root of Jesse, which shall stand for an ensign of the people; to it shall the Gentiles seek: and his rest shall be glorious.

11 And it shall come to pass in that day, that the Lord shall set his hand again the second time to recover the remnant of his people, which shall be left, from Assyria, and from Egypt, and from Pathros, and from Cush, and from Elam, and from Shinar, and from Hamath, and from the islands of the sea.

12 And he shall set up an ensign for the nations, and shall assemble the outcasts of Israel, and gather together the dispersed of Judah from the four corners of the earth.

13 The envy also of Ephraim shall depart, and the adversaries of Judah shall be cut off: Ephraim shall not envy Judah, and Judah shall not vex Ephraim.

14 But they shall fly upon the shoulders of the Philistines toward the west; they shall spoil them of the east together: they shall lay their hand upon Edom and Moab; and the children of Ammon shall obey them.

15 And the Lord shall utterly destroy the tongue of the Egyptian sea; and with his mighty wind shall he shake his hand over the river, and shall smite it in the seven streams, and make men go over dryshod.

16 And there shall be an highway for the remnant of his people, which shall be left, from Assyria; like as it was to Israel in the day that he came up out of the land of Egypt.
 
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athenasius

Well-Known Member
You can see in v 4 it's Jesus-- and it refers to Him smiting His enemies at the end of the Tribulation, v 9 talks of the knowledge of God filling the earth, v 10 talks of His rest being glorious. That is the Sabbath rest of the millennium.

This is all millennial language and references, and here in v 6-8 the predators and dangerous insects and snakes are now peaceful as prophesied. This is not allegorical. This is a direct prophetic reference to the peace of Christ during His millennial reign.

And if this is the millennium your pastor thinks we are in, it's a far cry from what Isaiah thought it would be.
 

Anewcreationinjesus

Well-Known Member
Yup I was thinking to do with preterism, they believe for example Matthew 24 is all about the destruction of the temple in AD70, and I must say, quite bizarrely, the clear description of Jesus 2nd coming then becomes him "having returned in spiritual judgement to judge Israel in AD70"....I must say as a woman and believing what the word says about men being the preachers in church, I just feel sad, bewildered and indeed perplexed that so many pastors aren't preaching the full counsel of God and I feel all I can do is pray - the list is getting longer! I'd say how late the time seems that preaching re eschatology is vital :) as well as naming false doctrine from the pulpit too to warn the sheep :) or indeed :( as there are so many winds of doctrine blowing about!
 

Salluz

Well-Known Member
End times teaching isn't a salvation (justification) issue, but it most certainly is a sanctification issue. The gospel is the gospel and stands on it's own, but there's so much joy in this life to be gained from thinking of our blessed hope; pondering prophecy changes our perspective toward the eternal. Sets our hearts on things above. We are admonished to comfort each other with the rapture and Christ's second coming, so if we aren't doing that, we aren't listening to the full counsel of God. It really isn't healthy to pick and choose what parts of the bible to follow. Even if someone is still saved, ignoring such a big portion of the bible like prophecy stunts spiritual growth. Not to mention the crown awaiting those who love Jesus' coming. Can't love it if you dont know it's going to happen.
 

Tall Timbers

Imperfect but forgiven
I'm sure it's much more, but by studying eschatology, I find my hope and faith increased, and an excitement over being a member of the Body of Christ. My looking up and watching and waiting is an act of the faith that has come to define me. What a gift the Word of God is, and such a big chunk of that incredible Blessing references what's coming.
 

Jeri minton

Well-Known Member
I listen to a popular teacher for one main reason, he heavily emphasizes how important Bible prophecy is...he often says that God gives us prophecy, not to scare us, but to prepare us....I think there are many people claiming to be Christians that are not ready or willing to meet the Lord, so they choose false doctrines about prophecy and the rapture for that reason...
 

lenraff

Well-Known Member
So, I asked my pastor yesterday what he thought of the End Times. I asked because he'd made some off-hand negative comments about the Left Behind book series (not from the pulpit, just in a small group setting), but in the 3 years we've been here, there's never been a sermon on that topic, so I asked.

His response was, "I am not dispensational, I am not pre-trib or ammilennial. I believe the first 20 or so chapters of Revelation all happened during ancient Roman times. And I don't believe it really matters because there's nothing anyone can do to effect what happens before or during Jesus' return."

Okay, so, while I completely disagree with his view, I'm left to ponder whether this is truly a vital thing or not. We won't be given a quiz at death that asks us to define our end times beliefs and if we get it wrong, what are the consequences?

I am one of those people that think that unless an issue is a salvation issue, then there is room for variation within God's family. There's room for believers to have different taste in music, to interpret parables differently, to see Creation differently (although, obviously I possess the most correct truth, right? :ahaha)

Anyway, my point is, while I disagree about this issue, I'm not sure it's enough to do anything about.

Thoughts?
Imo, this person is more concerned about his paycheck then the souls entrusted to him. Non-committal is basically un-Christian. The cross is an offense as is the Whole word of God. Watchmen don't get to cower from proclaiming the truth, the whole truth. Just left a place like that. Our thinking is this, a little leaven can be almost invisible but it corrupts the whole lump nonetheless.
 
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