Tuesday, July 27, 2010

A Nice Summary of Evangelical Beliefs On the End of the World

The always good Joe Carter at the Evangelical section of First Things has a good post on this. See Jesus is Coming Back When? – A Crash Course in Evangelical Views of Eschatology

I find it interesting the different school of thoughts. For whatever reason the Southern Baptist Church I attended was not so much under the influence of the Dallas Theological School so the "Rapture" as many people think of it was a concept I was not raised with. But as you see it is one of many views.


Andy said...

Interesting. I've heard that generally the two World Wars did a lot to kill off the post-millennialism school of thought and the 1948 formation of Israel (not to mention Israel's impressive military victories) did a lot to invigorate the pre-millennial dispensationalist school of thought.

James H said...

I agree this is interesting. What I find interesting about it is the perception that Evangelicals are on the same page.

Growing up in the heat of the Cold war the Book : the late great planet Earth" was influence but to my church it never translataed at all into Rapture theology. Again it is intersting to see the diversity of views

Realist said...

The terms "Evangelical" or "Baptist" can include anyone who wishes to refer to themselves by those terms. But I am not aware of any disagreement that there will be a pre-millennial Rapture of those who are truly saved (born again). The disagreement of which I am aware is whether the Rapture will take place on the first day of the Great Tribulation, at the exact midpoint of the 7 year period, at some unknown point during the Great Tribulation, or after Armageddon. The article in your link does not mention this variety of beliefs on the subject.
Our AG/Pentecostal friends and relatives almost all agree with the pre-tribulation Rapture, detailed in "The Late Great Planet Earth", and they stress it much more than Baptists. They always used it in their revival services to try to "scare" people into conversion. This culminated at the turn of the century into the
Y2K alarmist tactics used by the more blatant charlatans among them. Since the Rapture did not happen at that time, they lost credibility and those tactics have fallen out of favor.
I think the reason so few Baptist preachers stress our belief in the Rapture is they do not want to seem "Baptecostal", and they want the candidate for salvation to be making a decision based on faith rather than fear.

James H said...

Was not the traditonal view in Baptist circles that is was after after Armageddon.

Realist said...

To the best of my knowlege, there has always been disagreement about that. I know from relatives that the pre-tribulation viewpoint was adopted by the Assembly of God at their founding. The Baptist preachers just did not mention it much. Personally, I did not form a belief about it until reading "The Late Great Planet Earth", and I accepted pre-tribulation Rapture as the truth. That was early '70s and since then Hal Linsay has practiced divorce/remarriage, and been closely associated with Melodyland, and TBN. His sister-in-law is an obvious charlatan, making outrageous claims about supernatural Satanic practices. Hal Lindsey has lost credibility with me, but he did not invent the end-times doctrines that he publicized.
It might be because the timing of the Rapture is controversial that Baptists do not often preach about it.
But as far as I know, a belief in Rapture before the millennial reign of Christ is universal among those that I consider "real" Baptists, and only the timing is controversial. Who knows what characters like Westboro/Phelps, who also call themselves Baptist might say?
I am the kind of Baptist that is not "protestant" or "reformed". I believe my faith was established back in the era that Jesus Christ, as a full grown adult, was baptized in the Jordan River by John the Baptist. The establishment of Roman Catholic and other Orthodox denominations came after the Christian Religion became apostate. They mixed some elements of true Christianity with their Greek and Roman paganism, to form a new false religion. But there has always been a remnant of true Christianity, but where there is parallel doctrine between true Baptists, and the Roman Catholic Church, or Calvin, Luther, Armin, or any other reformer, that does not mean that the Baptists are descended from any of those denominations or reform movements. They took those doctrines from true Christianity, but true Christianity did not descend from them at the reformation or at any other time.
Please do not construe this as hatred. While you believe that my religious belief is false, and I believe that your religious belief is false, we do not hate each other.

James H said...

"Please do not construe this as hatred. While you believe that my religious belief is false, and I believe that your religious belief is false, we do not hate each other."

Oh don;t worry about that. I understand where you are coming from and of course I don;t think your entire belief is false :)