May 142018
 

1. I think I’m having a hard time finding the significance of the U.S. Embassy in Israel noted in Scripture…

2. Dispensational theology driving is driving political decisions in the Middle East… doctrine matters…

 

3. The Supreme Court opened the door to state sponsored sports gambling today. State sponsored gambling is a voluntary tax on the poor…

4. This football season in Oregon you’ll be able to legally gamble on the NFL while smoking as much weed as you like…civilization marches on…

5. It’s interesting watching the Truly Reformed divide over political and social issues…the devil throws out the distractions and the church receives them gladly as if from on high…

6. Warmer weather has come to my homeland…sunshine cures a multitude of ailments…

7. Division, like many other sins, invigorates the flesh without regard for consequence…

8. I’ve said it before…I don’t understand why dispensationalists are always behind things which according to their system will delay the Second Coming…I’m ready to go this afternoon…

9. The biblical definition of “neighbor” takes a mortal blow when interpreted politically…

10. Major depression diagnoses are going through the roof…especially among young people. I can’t help but think that if we who are commissioned to do so focused our energies on pastoral ministry we might be able to help…

 

  131 Responses to “Things I Think…”

  1. I saw #10 and am not surprised. Remember the old saying, “ignorance is bliss?” Ecclesiastes 1:18 even affirms, “for with much wisdom comes much sorrow; the more knowledge, the more grief.”

    With the Internet connecting all of us, we are now filled with more knowledge to consume quickly and easily than ever before, and the sheer knowledge of humanity’s depravity and division — combined with the demand for speed and productivity in the current age — is burning us out *rapidly*.

    Not everything was better in the former years, but not everything is better *now*, either. Both nostalgia and progressivism are extremes based on the fallacies that either everything was better in the old days, or its opposite fallacy, that everything is better now.

    When I was happier, younger, and ignorant (I’m an older Millennial and remember typewriters, The Oregon Trail game, music and movies on cassette tapes, and life before the Internet), all I knew were the basics of life, and what my family believed. Now we are bombarded with every viewpoint under the sun, and every possible subdivision of each category: theism, atheism, numerous Christian denominations, patriarchy, feminism, complementarianism, gender identities, 1950s nostalgia, race race race race RACE! (and despite our endless dialogue ad nasueam about it, racial relations aren’t any better than they were in the late 20th century — if anything, they’re worse), conservatism vs liberalism, balance, dispensationalism, theonomy, reconstructionism, paedo vs craedo baptism …

    info overload. Trying to come to the absolute gospel truth on every one of these things, not to mention the 5,000 other issues of life, is _exhausting_.

    Gen X and the Boomers had the Cold War, yes, but they just had to deal with getting their information from books and TV, and dealing with people face-to-face or over the phone — not the endlessly unfiltered and splintered Internet, where you can find every remote idea and group under the sun.

  2. First!

  3. Then again…not first.

  4. #1 – Yeah, me either.

    #2 – Pence? Is that the dispy of which you speak?

    #5 – Interesting is a good word. One reformed dude in particular is sort of exposing himself.

    #6 – IN the 90’s here today. I love it!

    #8 – You guys are always reading different dispensationlists than me. I am one of the two last dispensationalists here, and I can’t imagine what you are talking about.

    #10 – True, but I think the answer will be so counter-cultural that most people will choose depression.

  5. As a pastor I am now seeing people hide behind mental health diagnoses as a means of eschewing personal responsibility, living as a victim, demanding special treatment and refusing to seek remedies with those they deem blameworthy. Trauma now means you can excuse your addictions, your abuse of others, your refusal to face life.

    I am a long term advocate of kindness, care, patience and understanding about mental health issues but I am now balancing that with some old fashion refusal to put up with those who refuse to participate in their own recovering and life responsibility.

    Caring about people’s problems more than they do is neither brotherly love or good public policy. Whole groups of people are caving under normal life pressure. My grandparents knew that life was hard, they taught us to face it.

    I think protecting people from pain is causing more pain than it is preventing.

    Things I Rant Dread

  6. Great list of β€œThings” today.

    Warmer weather has come to my neck of the woods too. Not as welcome here in the Valley of the Sun, especially when warmer means 96 or higher.

  7. Pastor Dread is wisdom filled today – ameniing every word

    I’m with the Captain on the “warmer” weather, but the sunshine is nice…..

  8. Amen to Bab’s #5, (without discounting actual disease).

    Re #2 in the OP, I don’t think that dispys are driving any political policy. AIPAC on the other hand…

  9. @5 Babylon’s Dread, *excellent* points. And those principles apply not just in the mental health field, but in any category of people who think they can use a label or category to excuse wrong behavior. So if I act tactless and angry, I can blame my autism diagnosis. If a woman hates and rants against men excessively, she can use emotional trauma as an excuse. If a man hates and rants against women because he’s addicted to porn and yet can’t get laid in real life, it’s because he’s a man and can’t help it, and it’s the women’s fault.

    And let’s not even get started on the race card. Modern Western progressivism rests on the assumption that practically everything bad that’s ever happened to women or racial minorities is because of those darned insensitive white men and their power. It’s like women and blacks can do no wrong — blame the white man when you have troubles. It’s never the women’s and blacks’ own fault. Then of course you get the men on the alt-right, who fight back and presume precisely the opposite. *facepalm*

    Everyone’s hiding in their little corners, behind their little groups and labels, armed with their rationalizations to explain away and justify all their problems and sins, and blame them on everyone else in the world who isn’t part of their exclusive coterie.

    (And then they have the gall to try and demand tolerance and inclusiveness, lol)

  10. There will always be those who game any system…

    Having said that, I think we have an actual crisis…a crisis created by disconnection from the dirt, disconnection from each other, disconnection from God…all of which leads to disconnection from self and society.

    The death of cultural Christianity meant all the fences fell…and without boundaries humans are not free, but lost.

  11. Kendra,

    I think you speak well of the information overload…and we have image overload as well.

    All of this energy with nothing to ground it…

  12. I was rereading my favorite dispensational apologist yesterday and came away more convinced than ever in this approach to Scripture… That said the no 7 year period of tribulation without the presence of the Church folk hold the same view, essentialy, that Israel did and, i guess, religious Jews do to this day…. The one thing that i do sense is that world events continue on the same as always since the Lord’s ascension back to the Father with one difference from the amil view and that is that these events cycle and increase in world influence and intensity…
    It does not line up with the pattern throughout Scripture that the *Church goes thru the 3 1/2 years that the wrath of God is poured out on the planet…. but it does seem like things are getting pretty hot, so, either way keep looking up, eh?

    *Church does not describe all Believers, only those of a certain time period IMV

    not teaching here…. just sayin’ 😳

  13. Michael’s 10 & 11 comments = amen from this corner….

  14. I see BD’s point.

    My grandpa and uncle suffered from severe depression. One managed to raised a family the other had a successful career in the Navy as an officer. One attempted suicide and the other committed suicide, unfortunately. My brother inherited the awful disease. While I have compassion, I also think he takes advantage by using it as an excuse to not try to have a life. He’s got my folks by the balls and they’re scared to push him to do anything.

    I try to not resent him….

  15. Thot # 4…. Hmmm…. Maybe i’ll come down to Oregon and make some money… all credit cards accepted….

  16. Em, the events do not cycle or recycle – they happen, are happening at one time.

    John’s telling of the events is what recycles. It is like he tells of the events and then says, “let me put it this way.”

  17. MLD, we disagree… but that does not, necessarily, make either one of us correct πŸ˜‡

    Comment 14… Link seems a bit strange. no matter one’s politics

  18. One of your better “Things I Think.” Thank you.

  19. Em, you disagree with my explanation that the events happen only once but are told several times?

  20. Michael, your #2 is funny. If I say doctrine matters, especially end times doctrine, I get jumped by you and others as not fairly considering the views of others.
    You point, and I think you meant to say dispensational theology drivel, (but got auto corrected) if said by me would get a lecture about the value of being generously orthodox.

    Good to see you come back to the dark side. πŸ™‚

  21. MLD,

    I will concede that this was a wake up call…especially when church and state get in bed together.

    I can still attempt to be irenic in the discussion, though when Jeffers and Hagee are the representatives of Christianity at a public service, my ability in that area is sorely tried…

  22. Of course my view, disputed by some here, is dispensationalism at most turns Christianity in to a different religion – in the very least, an unrecognizable mutant.
    I think rapture theology / dispensationalist represent their positions well. Hagee’s position that Jews have their own covenant with God and do not need to be evangelize – in conjunction with the thought that the new covenant as expressed by Jeremiah not belonging to the Church, but actually belonging to millennial Israel are…well I will not say.

  23. As I’ve stated before Christianity is centered on the kerygma of the NT and the creeds of the early church.

    Dispys are well within the bounds.

    I do find that the older I get, the more I have large differences on secondary matters with them…but celebrate them as brethren, still.

  24. I have depression. Had it since I was really young. In the 1970s. This was before the internet and twitter. I didn’t choose to be depressed. I am not hiding behind depression to eschew responsibility – I have a high paying job and take care of a household. Medications saved me. I’m thriving now, but I still have depression.

  25. As I have said with the word faith guys – there are ‘Christians’ who can confess the creeds with one side of their mouth and then take it away with the other in their actual theology.

    On a brighter note, I have no issue with the US putting our embassy in Israel’s own declared capital – as we do in all nations.

  26. #10
    My missions field is all millennials,
    My church is 93% millennials.

    For those who sign up, a pastor’s heart and counsel makes ALL all the difference!

    A lot is being stated about the advent of the iPhone, the Ipad and social media being a source of that anxiety in the post millennials β€œIGen.”

  27. #20 – before the days of “check engine” light warnings on cars, we might hear a funny noise when driving and think, “id better get that looked at,” but nothing got worse and so we kept on driving. … Mine is telling me that im out of windshield washer fluid now
    So?
    So i think we have seen almost all of the events John describes occurring down thru time, but not with the compressed finality and intensity that is yet ahead – as to John’s fascinating scenario being repetetive? No, i don’t read it that way. And that has nothing to do with interpreting what he describes. I do suspect that the check engine light is on now…. Dunno
    FWIW I do see some overlapping and a couple paranthetical chapters and i think there is much that requires O.T. study… i don’t begin to claim scholarship on that … I do rely on one teacher for interpretation of the events, but even then i disagree on what triggers when the Church is removed – pre wrath makes sense to me
    Your view is yours to defend and i know most here are in your camp,, essentially interpreting the end as playing out exactly as O.T. Jews did…
    All i have contended from day one is that i have proved to my satisfaction that there is a sequence that is not repetetive. It can’t be very edifying to keep repeating this back and forth can it?
    I think we are unnecessarily using up space here. Wasting everyone’s time, if they even bother to read. There is good scholarship on both sides and, granted, there is some not so good in the dispensational millennial camp, at least
    I think folks should read up – you present your side very well – read up and take your choice…
    Engaging my comments is just a rabbit trail of sorts, not worth your time. IMV

  28. I think the issues the millennials deal with today is the result of outlawing Dodge Ball 20 – 30 yrs ago. Today no one from that era knows how to deal with life.
    (my simple analysis)

  29. Dan, it’s good that you are able to thrive with it. I think the point is not so much the fact of having a diagnostic label, but in how one deals with it.

    I was diagnosed with level 2 autism four years ago, at the age of 29 (what used to be called Asperger Syndrome, for I’m not cognitively challenged — I did well academically, needed no assistance growing up, and graduated early — I’m only challenged in the realms of certain social, pragmatic, and executive functioning spheres). Disclosure is something I do only in very specific contexts now, and I make it a point to try to learn and apply good coping mechanisms rather than get frustrated to the point of meltdowns.

    For a few years, though, I think I more or less used the label as a crutch sometimes to explain why I had trouble dealing with people, social cues, and certain demands on the job as substitute school teacher and direct support caretaker of mentally challenged individuals. As a female, it was also tempting to use it as an excuse for submissive helplessness. Patriarchal culture may not be popular with most modern women, but it can also be paradoxically attractive as an excuse for women to not take the responsibility for anything in their lives, and instead heap burdens all on various male authorities.

    We all have to find balance with whatever our strengths and weaknesses are. Everyone tells me I’m intellectual, systematic, logical, and advanced with language, but I’m also notoriously bad at initiating conversations, being tactful, and dealing with conflicts and the completely unexpected. My meltdowns can be scary and sever relationships with others for good. I can either let that define me, or keep working at it.

  30. Thanks for the kind words and your reply Khendra! I’ll write/respond more later when not too busy here at work…most likely well after midnight eastern time.

  31. Dan – I’ve been on SSRI’s for the last 20 years. You are not alone.

  32. Thanks Josh! I was advised by a well-meaning, but nevertheless, unqualified (read: not a doctor) believer to not go on meds….not sure if they believed it would be a “lack of faith” thing in their mind if I did so..anyways, going on an SSRI myself gave me what I needed to get my life back.

  33. Me too brother. I would have never made it to 30 without it. Just the honest truth. Something about the broken world we live in. I haven’t had a major depressive episode in many years now, and could probably function without meds, but as you know, it is sometimes a nightmare trying to come off.

  34. An older article I wish the whole world would read:

    http://sbcvoices.com/things-dispensationalism-does-not-teach/

  35. Just an honest question for you guys to answer when you have the time…I’m wondering, from the gender perspective, have you experienced any particular stigma for being male and depressed? I ask because it’s still expected these days that women are more likely to be “emotional” in general (whether positive or negative emotions), and for them to seek help for mental problems like depression, while men are expected to be the strong, more silent type about such matters. Hence pro athletes like DeMar DeRozan and Kevin Love speaking out to help break the stigma of men and mental health.

    But it’s only certain diagnoses where this is applicable, too. My own diagnosis, autism, is actually much more common among men. Women may be expected to have more emotional issues, but I’m not supposed to be horrible with tact, social skills, multi-tasking, and yet good with logic and systemizing, all of which are common facets of the autism spectrum.

    I’ve always found these things rather confusing from our current cultural perspective. The Bible itself never genders these particular issues, and is largely silent about them.

  36. @36

    Gender stereotypes are alive and well in Christian circles. I’ve been on Effexor for anxiety/depression for over 6 years now. The meds have made a difference but I’m still an emotional wreck at times. My issue is with those who use mental illness as an excuse to not live.

  37. Khendra, 20 years ago I think the stigma was very bad. I actually had a couple of real-life panic attacks. The Doctor literally told me, “Men don’t have those.”. So yeah, I felt weak and less than manly for a while. It has either gotten better, or I have gotten use to it. Either way, after a few years of not being suicidal, I forgot about the stigma. There is still some stigma because I’m also a minister.

  38. JTB,

    I appreciate the article you provided a link to. Maybe one reason dispys are favorites
    of the Babylon Bee is that it’s easy to stereotype the populist and sensationaiistic
    folks (personal favorite: Salem “Cigarettes” Kirban.)

    Question: would scholarly dispensationalism be individuals like Darrell Bock from
    Dallas and Craig Blaising?

  39. Bob1 – definitely.

  40. When thinking about what I consider to be the current over diagnoses of just about everything, and agreeing with bab’s sentiment, I wanted to keep the truly afflicted in mind, hence the “(without discounting actual disease)”.

    I pray that this discussion wasn’t hurtful and that God would give peace to the afflicted.

  41. #41 – amen, Jim, amen…

  42. Josh – I don’t know that your linked article helps you case much.

    “After the church is taken away, Israel will be restored as the primary people of God.” – do you really believe that the church then becomes #2? How is that any different than mine (and many other’s claim that in dispensationalism the church is Plan B?

    But I do like the way he discredits dispensationalist past and present. He says that the dispensationalism of CI Schofield, and I would assume Lewis Sperry Chafer has been rejected by Walvoord, Ryrie and Pentecost and then follows up with the newer group of progressive Dispensationalism that has walked away from Walvood etc and this 3rd incarnation of dispensationalism is the corrected one.

    But even then he divides between populist and sensationalist ‘dispensationalist’ and the ‘scholarly dispensationalist’. Pretty snooty position on his part as I am sure that those who agree with him are the scholars and those who disagree are the unwashed lowlies.

    His last dig at the amil folks is laughable – demanding a chart from a position that needs no charts. The entire amil position is listed in Matt 25:31-46 and the 2nd article of the creed;
    The third day he rose again from the dead. He ascended to heaven and is seated at the right hand of God the Father almighty. From there he will come to judge the living and the dead.

    Why would anyone need a chart to explain that? But Miller does brag on the dispensationalist charts.

  43. Man…busy overnight shift tonight…no time to expound…thanks for the good words Josh, Jim, and Khendra M!

  44. MLD has never been celebrated for his reading comprehension skills.

    No need to start now πŸ™‚

  45. I posed a question on Facebook yesterday to those who think that biblically our country should be favoring the modern state of Israel and how do we balance that with concern for the Palestinian Christians in light of what Scripture says about being concerned for others, especially those who are our brothers and sisters in the faith. So far, I’ve got no replies.

    (And I can tell from my feed that there a quite a few who are all gung ho about the embassy move yesterday.)

  46. Josh

    “I’d encourage some of my friends to understand that even those populist Dispensationalists are good people who love your Savior.”

    I think the article was a fair representation, even if I do not agree with the system or, indeed, the hermeneutic. I think, however, we all have the fault of pushing particular “distinctives” of our theological systems to the foreground. Sacramental Christians can do this as well as populist dispensationalists. The important issue, in my mind, is what underlies our distinctives – i.e. our personal faith in Christ…

  47. As for the sports gambling, I have never had a problem with some friends doing some reasonable wagering with each other for the fun and entertainment and challenge of it. Same with card playing or what not. But, yeah, when it comes to any big organized gambling such as lotteries, casinos, and sports gambling which will now become much more widespread (legally, anyway), I have always avoided them. I have never felt right with the thought of potentially winning big money at the expense of many others who lost it, some who can’t afford to lose it.

  48. Kevin H, I do not know the answer. I do wonder if there are some fals narratives floating about, though. Since God is calling people from all tribes and nations, wouldn’t the same delimma apply for every single conflict that our country chooses a side? Meaning, the other side either has Christians or lost people who need Christ. Should we be killing them? I’m not sure the Palestinians are special in that sense. (Remember though, I’m basically a pacifist. A hypocritical one, sure.)

    Duane, Yes! I also would disagree with hs use of “scholarly”. Though there are dispensational scholars, for sure, what he describes is all that I have seen in SBC churches for the last 20 years, and that is from people who aren’t educated at all. I’m sure personal context makes a huge difference. The IFB people I know around here would fit his “populist” label. It sounds like people with experience in CC have mostly encountered the sensationalist type.

  49. Josh,

    I don’t think there are easy answers either. It’s just that I see some who are seemingly so hyped up about the embassy and everything Israel in general, I wonder if they even give a thought to the Palestinian Christians. My hunch is that some don’t. So I’m at least trying to bring some awareness.

  50. 47 Duane, interesting post, as it’s been the distinctives that have really caught my attention in recent years. Modern Christianity is not at all monolithic and unified despite what Paul admonished the early church to be (1 Corinthians 3); it is very divided whether we like it or not, and there is much theology to sift through.

    Can’t say I was really prepared for it by my upbringing, either. I was raised by parents who, despite getting very caught-up in End Times speculations for many years, nonetheless were very lenient with just about every other matter except personal faith in Christ, and a general sense of conservatism. As such, I was not raised to deal with distinctive-pushers. My dad was raised Episcopalian and my mother WELS Lutheran, but they never really took to any orthodox sort of denominational theology. Dad and Mom took me to a WELS church when I was young, but I was never taught that the pope was the Antichrist; I learned much later in my adulthood that this is a WELS teaching (my mother seemed surprised when I showed her the proof on their web site last year). She always warned against Catholics “worshiping” Mary, but she said she thought there were some genuine Christians among the Catholics nonetheless, and never connected the pope with the Antichrist. But the WELS is much more stringent than that.

    My mother also continued to stress her WELS upbringing despite having a futurist eschatology influenced by John Hagee, Irvin Baxter, and various Pentecostal theologians; a love of Pentecostal TV; online friends who were all Pentecostal — frankly, I informed her before she passed earlier this year that she was and had been Pentecostal, theologically, for about the last 25 years of her life, not WELS/Confessional Lutheran anymore. But anytime I tried explaining things like this, either to her or my father — that is, anytime I raised specific doctrinal questions, they invariably evaded the issue with a basic response of, “Well whatever, but in the end, it’s all about believing Jesus!”

    Hmmm, yes, but I want to be able to also deal with the distinctives when they come up, and not just brush them under a rug, so to speak.

    So most of these distinctive matters my parents were completely oblivious to, as they usually interpreted Scriptures according to whatever their own personal ideas and inclinations were (they even concluded after some time the VERY unorthodox position that people can be saved after they die). I’ll also add that they stopped attending church in the mid 1990s, so their views just got less organized from there, obviously.

    And so when Reformed Calvinists tried to recruit me online, and taught a form of Biblical Patriarchy as espoused by Doug Phillips, Douglas Wilson, Voddie Baucham, John Piper, Mark Driscoll, and Bill Gothard, my parents couldn’t help me — I had to address these people without their aid and do a lot of my own research.

    I’m now so much more versed in distinctives than I was a few years ago. Have to be, because as you say, people do push them.

  51. Josh, there is nothing that I addressed that Miller did not say. He said that when the church would be removed Israel would regain the #1 position. Not regain a position as being a part of God’s people but the primary focus point.

    Miller also said the Scofield dispies were divisive and wrong according to the Walvoord dispies who then were declared divisive and wrong by the progressive dispies Who now divide by the wrongly educated and the scholarly educated.

    But yes, they are all nice people. So in the end, can you recommend any popular level books that lay out the progressive position?

  52. The papacy being the anti Christ is not do let a WELS thing – it is laid out in the Book of Concord.

  53. Sorry you didn’t get it, MLD.

  54. Josh

    Indeed there are scholars. When I read anything by Blaising, even if I disagree, I have to take him seriously because I know Craig to be fine scholar. I think in these matters, it is not so much a point agree/disagree, but in the first case to to weigh the scholarship as well as any assumptions that lay behind the scholarship. Now, there are crazies in all our traditions – not just among dispensationalists. In my experience, it is seldom worth the energy and effort to argue with them. Even if you convince them… they will remain unconvinced!

  55. Josh you’re saying the same thing as Miller. If only people understood they would understand which is ridiculous we’ve all read.

    When it comes up for what the dispensationalist believe or used to believe look into the reasons that the 1901 Scofield bible was trashed and dumped and replaced by the 1967 version.

  56. MLD – See 55. Duane gets it. You don’t. Sorry bud πŸ™‚

  57. Josh I’m not debating you or Duane I am pointing out that Miller is wrong in his assessment of why people make the decisions they do as to what dispensationalism is because we too reading the primary sources of the dispensationalist.

    Also, in the article, you probably did not read the comments. As I do with foot notes, I read the comments and his replies to comments, …bud.

  58. The LCMS holds the office is, not the pope himself. That is one of the three differences between them and WELS.

  59. MLD, it’s all good. You have the right to be wrong, homie πŸ™‚

  60. Josh, please excuse any awkward phraseology as I am using the voice command to interact as I am sitting on my boat in Thompson Bay on Lake Havasu as my wife fishes. Lord I hate her getting blood and fish guts on my boat, but love compels me to allow such.

    The route of the discussion is the reason I usually use the term Rapture Theology / Dispensationalism as they are all from the same root. Call it bad dispensationalism but even the end times craziness of Charles Stanley, HAdrian Rogers and David Jeremiah surfaced from DTS writings.

  61. Yes, same root. That’s what Miller’s article was about. Things develop over time. Some of the craziest started DTS. Things develop, mellow out, get better. The Dispensationalism of Blaising and Schofield are nowhere near the same monster.

    I would probably have trouble reading carefully if I was being distracted by my boat too. πŸ™‚

  62. Of course, I don’t think Stanley and Rogers are crazy, but End Times is very small part of their ministry.

  63. See this is what Miller is done in his article. He has dispensationalist eating each other. All of a sudden ririe becomes one of the crazies at dgs because he rejected the Progresso point of view. Miller’s harmful in this in this area because what he says is the view of dispensationalism is right so he gets the pick and choose which scholar he’ll follow. People in the past like Tommy Ice who follow what I call the normal dispensational view he’s a scholar.
    I guess that’s like saying well he’s not really a dispensationalist. I’ll stick with the old guys I guess I just don’t know who these dispensational deniers are that you follow πŸ™‚

  64. The U.S. Embassy, while declaring the right of Israel to exist (and other good, right things), is probably one way to piggy-back deception into the church. Not making any claims about the Antichrist, but it does seem that “craft” is prospering exponentially more than even five years ago, and there are many elect who will take the word of a conference speaker or nationalist politician over those of God himself.

    If the Spirit of God is preparing his bride, the spirit of Antichrist is preparing his church as well.

  65. How did you read that in Miler’s article? He honored each one, while saying the “Left Behind” types are annoying. Ryrie is great. One of my favourite Systematic Theologies. You are reading what is not in the article instead of what is actually there.

  66. MLD, I know it bothers you to have be more careful with your condemnations. Miller’s point, which is 100% true, is that there is a range within dispensationalism. He doesn’t condemn any of them, while commending his personal beliefs.

    If you use Darby to try to condemn all dispensationalists, you make a huge error. You have to narrow your brush, just a little, if you want to be accurate.

    Same as “Lutheran” has many different groupings, all of which are “Lutheran” but disagree on some pretty major things.

    That’s all Miller is saying. Its not that complicated.

  67. Josh – Lutheran is a denomination whereas dispensationalism is just a theological overlay to varying teachings. It is much like Calvinism is not a denomination but a soteriological overlay. The funny thing is that you can be SBC, Calvinist and Dispy all at the same time, or be SBC, not Calvinist and not dispy.

    A Lutheran cannot be Calvinist nor dispy and still maintain any stability. You guys are much more flexible. πŸ™‚

  68. Correct.

    And you can be Lutheran and a Lesbian Pastor at the same time.

    You just don’t get, mi amigo.

  69. No you can’t. Heck you can’t even be a woman and a pastor – anywhere in any church.
    Oh, yes there are people who have usurped that position / role, but in reality those congregations are pastorless.

  70. Here’s an open question since Dispensationalism ( and the package always includes Rapture doctrines) has come up.

    Can anyone explain the wheat and tares? It would seem to contradict all doctrines I’m aware of. I promise to not critique any answer.

    But, if any want a go at it, don’t leave out the timeline, that would be cheating. Remember, the angels are sent to kill the offenders before the gathering. How can this be?

  71. Josh,

    I think it was a good article if for no other reason than it exposed my own heart and attitudes.
    To be blunt, offline I’m not irenic about the matter…
    He is absolutely correct when he speaks of dispensational folks being salt of the earth, faithful believers.
    I’m a jackass.
    Well done.

  72. @70 – MIllions of Lutheran disagree with you.

    @72 – Michael, we all have experience which colors our beliefs. I’m sure your experience with dispies has been less than positive. I don’t doubt that at all.

  73. Before i read this morning’s interesting thread and lose my thot, God has no backup plans as expressed by numerics or “plan b.” Things are going along exactly as the God of history knew they would when He set this scenario in motion – period.
    Should the U.S. back 21st century Israel? Of course. It is all according to the plan of God. The devil must be delusional and he is smarter than man, so i guess that cuts us some slack… dunno
    Therefore, if some dispensationals get the vapors thinking it is the end (could be. 😊) and some amils do the same because of excitable dispies in our midst, well ..?.. Calm down and enjoy the Faith
    That is how this dispy sees it, anyway

  74. Michael, (and even Josh)
    Well I think they are fine folks also – unlike Miller, I do not call them wrong in their expression of this teaching. Everything he says that ‘they’ do not believe is something that faithful dispensationalist have derived from the teaching of dispensationalism and have passed on – even the charts he brags about..

    Now I do strongly disagree with what they teach but what they teach is the logical conclusion of and for Rapture / Dispensational teaching. Even as Nathan Priddis is bringing out – the Bible teaches that those in judgment will be taken away and the faithful Left Behind. Rapture theology / Dispensationalism requires a rebuke of biblical teaching and makes the faithful taken away and those ready for judgment Left Behind. This is a faithful teaching of dispensationalism and not of the Bible.

    I can’t even think of going into their earthly kingdom theology where my next door neighbor for the next 1,000 years will have a mortal body while my wife and I have some type of millennial – who knows what kind of body (or no body) – that is kinda creepy.
    And how about the 2nd fall? – after living in perfect surroundings and perfect governance in the new garden – rebellion and war break out.

    But they are fine people – no one here got along or gets along better with someone like Steve Wright than I do.

  75. Josh @73 – if a SBC called a woman or a lesbian pastor – do they have a pastor?

  76. @ 76 – They will not be SBC. They may be “baptist” but they will not be SBC.

    However, lesbians can be pastors and still be Lutheran.

  77. @ 75- Man, you just didn’t understand the article at all, my compadre πŸ™‚

  78. One last thing to Nathan Priddis – the timeline is not important to the wheat and tares discussion as Jesus is not setting up a doctrine but is answering questions or clearing up things with the apostles.
    The Jesus point is that the unbelievers, represented by the tares will be carried off to destruction while the believers in Christ will remain.

  79. My 75 didn’t address the article – so your reading comprehension may be off. I was addressing that I think they are fine people who faithfully teach their view of rapture theology.

    But so you know, I read the article and the comments 3 times. But think of this – he defends what they don’t teach, but he sources the bad / false teaching to dispensationalists themselves.

    The only blame he gives Amillers in this article is we don’t have a chart.

  80. Josh @77 – they will not be LCMS either and you use ‘lutheran’ like you use baptist.

    But you are saying that a church, regardless where or who they are if they have a woman or lesbian pastor they have a legitimate pastor?

  81. @ 75 – you reference the article in the first sentence. Are you OK today? I mean, your arguments are always nonsense, but they are usually almost coherent. πŸ™‚

    You do know the “chart” thing was a joke, athe the expense of dispies, right? I’m feeling like you missed the sarcasm there.

    Maybe go back for a 4th or 5th read. IT’ll probably start to sink in…maybe?

  82. @ 81 – I never mentioned LCMS, only Lutheran. There are plenty of Lesbian Lutheran pastors.

    (That’s why its called a broadbrush. I’m trying to teach you an object lesson here)

  83. FWIW… Look at the millennial reign of Christ this way. Mortal man will experience living and dying under the Law perfectly adjudicated…. I wont go into the wind up of that or all the speculative rabbit trails… The Church? We’re, by then, neither male nor female, but somehow like the angels, however, no matter your view of the end – thud! πŸ˜†

  84. Josh I asked in general – does any church with a woman or lesbian pastor have a legitimate pastor — in your view.

  85. em, those earthly folks who originally go into the millennial kingdom, are they saved or not saved?

  86. @85 – I can’t see why on earth that matters.

  87. Josh – If they are indeed a legitimate pastor – why can’t a legitimate pastor be a pastor in your group?

    My position is clear – they are not a pastor and the church who hired them are pastorless churches. You seem to disagree. It’s fine, you brought it up and threw it out as an attempted insult.

  88. Just as Miller decides who is the real Dispy, you decide who is the real Lutheran.

    It was not an insult. It was a lesson you didn’t understand.

    Broadbushes are not useful!

  89. I didn’t say anything about who is a real Lutheran at all. Real Lutherans (as opposed to real baptist) are dreadfully sinful and make all kinds of errors to suit themselves. In the case we are speaking of they have chosen unwisely.

    But hey, if you think women and lesbians are legitimate pastors – as long as it is not in your backyard, that is OK with me.

  90. HAHAHA. You are not a good debator.

    You should be paying more attention to the boat πŸ™‚

  91. Josh – the good news is I have a new fish finder being delivered tomorrow πŸ™‚

  92. Here in North Carolina, we call that dynamite πŸ™‚

  93. #86 – while we separate on what comes after our Lord’s return, He does wipe out all rebel resistance, so i would say that the mortals remaining are the Believers (not Church) whom God has protected thru the Great Tribulation….
    FWIW… IMV, the first 3 1/2 years of that period are the most dangerous as – again in the view that makes the most sense to me – as i think the Church is still here, but there has arisen a global control of some sort looking very peaceful (anti-Church)
    MLD, i am mortal and i think your view which is essentially an update of the O.T. Jew’s mistaken view of Messiah’s advent, is not correct. I don’t find it necessary to be right. I know that, as mortals, either one of us could be wrong… but either way we do end this walk in the presence of the Lord and He is in charge of the wrap up of history.

  94. #93 – here in Washington, we call that illegal… 😁

  95. em, my view is not some mistaken Jewish view – my view are the words of Jesus in Matt 25:31 and those of the 2nd article of the creed.

    My point in asking about the mortals going into the millennial kingdom is that if they have been judged (you even called them believers) how did the go through judgment and keep their mortal bodies? This is the strange thing about the position – we have saved people, some in mortal bodies.
    If they are not saved and are in their mortal bodies, then we have saved and unsaved in the kingdom, which would be just like today.
    If they are saved and have some type of new body then there will be no children born in the kingdom who have not made a choice for Jesus and we know they are the fodder for the rebellion when Satan is loosed. (the 2nd fall)

  96. Despite the theological differences I celebrate what God has done with and through Em, Josh, and other faithful dispensationalists.

    I’m blessed by their presence, if not by their doctrine… πŸ™‚

  97. @95 – Once a cop walked up on some guys fishing in NC and said “Heard you guys were fishing with dynamite.” Guy on the bank lit a fuse and tossed it to the cop and said “You gonna just stand there, or are you gonna fish?”

    (sorry, Old joke πŸ™‚ )

  98. @97 – I think the only reason it comes up here often is that it is easy to argue. It’s one of the few areas where some of us have big disagreements. Dispensationalism rarely if ever comes up in my life, apart from this site.

  99. @MLD

    I said I would not critique, so I won’t mention anything other then the timeline being left out. The angels receive two specific instructions involving the timeline. Failure to perform the instructions would be disobedience.

    I doubt anyone will be able to incorporate the timeline. It contradicts popular doctrines.

  100. #96 oh, MLD, i knew your point in asking and you pushed on ignoring my response… πŸ˜‡

    The amil view of the END is very much the same view of the return of Christ to reign as the Jew of the O.T. who overlooked the prophesied 1st advent as the Lamb Who would be sacrificed for sin… I am NOT saying the amil view denies the incarnation or the N.T. account… Think about it… Think, MLD 😊

  101. Eww.

    Of course, I’d rather narrow that brush and say our Foreign policy is influenced by whakjobs, but I digress. πŸ™‚

  102. Excellent article from religion news service. Thanks Michael.

    I’ve often heard it said that Israel is God’s timepiece. Forgotten, is the God created the stars to mark time, and for signs.

  103. Wheat and tares… ?
    On the one hand we have the born again ones (the Church) and on the other, the religious pretenders – the exploiters of the sheep, perhaps – as to the separation, where it fits in the timeline? Would it not occur when the dead in Christ all are called to meet Him in the air? Can we carry a parable”s literal interpretation too far? I don’t know if this question leads to a theological response, but i bet there is one… or more πŸ˜€

  104. Josh,

    I’d narrow the brush some, too, but John Fea’s assertion that these particular dispensationalists/whackjobs are influencing U.S. Middle East policy would appear to have validity. And that’s scary.

    We’d be better off if more balanced dispies or more balanced Christians of any sort would be advising Trump. Of course, with Trump, there seems to be a more mutual attraction of those on the extremes.

  105. I just read the John Fea article. Boy is he wrong as to what drives the dispensationalist thought. I think I need to email him Josh’s Miller article. πŸ™‚

    I did get a kick on something I was watching on line (I have no broadcast or cable TV) – but both the dispensationalists and Jews thanking and praying to their own gods thinking they were thanking the same one. Funny, isn’t it?

  106. #102 Michael

    Don’t you get it?!? Embassy has 7 letters… “7” get it? And then US has 2 letters! 2×7=14
    The genealogy of Jesus is broken into 14 generations…

    It’s all there and plain to see πŸ™‚

  107. Duane,

    Makes perfect sense… πŸ™‚

  108. Think ive said this before, but…. πŸ˜‡
    It doesn’t really matter, as far as history is concerned, if Hagee has wound his theology around the maypole. He and Trump are players in the plan of God for history’s unfolding – just as were Stalin and Hitler and Constantine and …. so on….
    Yes I really think dispensational interpretation of the plan of God makes sense and some recent moves of the players are lining up in such an uncanny pattern as to make me wonder if we won’t very soon know who is right…

    BTW – the state of the State of Israel does not now have God’s approval even if we dispies are correct in what we see as prophetic fulfillment

    My brain hurts… Im done with this now. LOL

  109. Dispensational theology died by its own oft repeated expiration dates.

  110. Em, so you stand on false teaching not only being used by God but also a part of his plan?
    Yikes madam.

    It is funny that dispensationalist like Josh and Miller say “dispensationalist don’t believe…” Implying that guys like me misrepresent their position — then a dispensationalist opens his mouth.

  111. As a young believer in 1971 I was immediately drawn to the books by Larkin about dispensations.

    Also liked Jack Chick & Chick Tracts because he was an artist.

    …and I thought Maranatha! Music was so cool because of that dove.

  112. And I was not referring to Em – but to every rapture theology / dispensationalist who has opened his yap this week.
    Has any dispensationalist come out saying this is not a big event in prophetic timing?

  113. MLD,

    This is from a couple months ago, but this article quoting Bock gives the impression that he is more concerned as to how the embassy move may affect the Palestinians negatively than he is about it being any kind of prophetic event.

    https://www.onenewsnow.com/missions/2018/02/15/at-issue-impact-of-embassy-move-on-middle-east-missions

  114. 112 – i did not say that God winks at false teaching, MLD… What is occurring now in the nation of Israel does not surprise God. The unfolding of events on the world stage and the leaders of nations are most certainly right on schedule and on target according to the plan of God.
    I don’t know how or when in eternity past God began the universe or even this planet we live on… but He knows the end from the beginning and exactly how we’d get from one to the other.
    Perhaps one of the best arguments for dispensational theology’s validity is the number of loose cannons who have muddied the waters around it. πŸ˜‰
    But i think we should all read the 3rd chapter of 2 Peter and rest there as we wait to see who has it right… That’s what i think…. and don’t call me ‘madam!’

    BTW, if you don’t like fish blood and guts in your boat, why don’t you get one of those neat fish cleaning trays that hangs off the gunwale ? Or wait till you get home?

  115. KevinH,
    Interesting that you bring up Bock. I am watching his video

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bGeM4DNn2mE

    Now who here is watching a Lutheran teaching?

  116. I am watching Nadia Bolz Webber.

  117. I don’t usually check the links when im using this tablet, but….
    Moving our embassy in Israel to Jerusalem has made it possible for the bad guys to exploit the Palestinian civilians. Those mob riots at the border are a propagandist’s dream. No one will question what moved mothers and “children” to do what has transpired this week. It is all on the United States and Israel. Any fool can see the blood is on our hands…. A fool, maybe, but a wise man might look a little deeper and a dispensationalist might say, “I saw that coming.” … LOL

    But in time there will be peace… of a sort… for a while

  118. Josh, yes, but that’s because you think she is hot and can’t take your eyes off her ink.

  119. OK. Got me there πŸ™‚

  120. I have moved on to Daniel Wallace. I am like a DTS groupie

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Os31IEVTDJo

  121. That’s cause you think he’s hot.

  122. I think this explains why Michael does only podcasts and not videos. He doesn’t want anyone watching him just for his hotness.

  123. πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

  124. Wallace said he lost 50 lb so he is sexy πŸ™‚

  125. Well that little vixen…

  126. Sometimes, I bet Michael invites people to his page. “You should check us out. We have some pretty high level conversations.”

    Person scrolls to the bottom of a thread like this…:)

  127. Well Josh, since we’ve gone down this path, I thought you’d be interested in this: https://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/new-magnum-pi-jay-hernandez-loses-mustache-1112063 πŸ™‚

  128. Kevin H,

    Now that we are on that trail, IMHO, I will take McGarrett I (1968-1980), and McGarrett II (2009 to present, perhaps a 9th season) with Five 0; over Magnum I and soon to be II. In either case, the backdrop of Oahu, big part of my life, is awesome.

  129. Gotta be Kojak, right?

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