— Sean McDowell (@Sean_McDowell) September 23, 2017
Recently, Fox News ran an article, which ridicules a “Christian Numerologist/Astrologist,” David Meade, for claiming biblical prophecy asserts the world will end on September 23, 2017. Thankfully, the Fox News writer comes to the correct conclusion in the article by referring to a quote from author Jonathan Sarfati
As usual with any astrology (or Christian adaptations of it), one cherry-picks the stars that fit the desired conclusion,” Sarfati wrote, according to the Express. “There is nothing to suggest that 23 September is a momentous date for biblical prophecy, and Christians need to be careful about being drawn into such sensationalist claims.
The quote by Safari is as correct as it is direct and succinct. To the horror of true biblicist Christians, who study Bible Prophecy according to strict standards of interpretation, false teachers like David Meade represent a wide-spread plague of ancient mysticism (numerology, astrology and gematria) that has taken root in Charismatic and Evangelical Christianity. Fox News again correctly reports the sources of this date setting—being sourced in Egyptian, Jewish and Babylonian mystic teachings. These are used to interpret the Bible, instead of the Bible speaking from itself for itself. Therefore, it cannot be asserted that these teaching come from the Bible…. Rather they are being read into the Bible.
WHAT THE BIBLE ACTUALLY TEACHES ABOUT WHAT’S NEXT
When one reads phrases like, “the world will end on _______,” he/she should immediately recognize the comment is NOT sourced from the Bible.
The Bible NEVER teaches this world’s next event will be its utter end, in the sense that it would somehow stop existing… as if all of its creatures and physical matter would be annihilated into nothingness and time would cease in one feel swoop. What the Bible DOES teach is the progression of a set of events, which bring the world and its inhabitants into another age of existence (i.e. kind of life) on earth BEFORE this world is fully destroyed by God, who will finally create a new world.
THE AGE TO COME: THE HEREAFTER
Whereas God does not now directly show Himself and visibly intervene in the course of human existence, He will do so in the next age. Jesus (Yeshua) of Nazareth Himself will return as the King of Kings and Lord of Lords to directly and visibly rule the globe He created.
To teach about what precedes His coming Kingdom, Jesus Himself made prophecies of signal events and societal indicators that would happen just before a 7 year transition-period of the ages. He called these signal events and indicators “Birth Pangs” or “Beginning of Sorrows” or “First Things.” They serve as warnings… and they are occurring around the globe at the time this article is posted.
AFTER the Birth Pangs follow 7 years of global trouble, such as never has occurred before. If you think things are bad now, you have not seen anything yet. One marker among many signs of this period’s beginning is the resurrection of deceased believers and the rapture (lit. “taking up/away”, or vanishing – 1 Corinthians 15:51-52, 1 Thessalonians 4:15-18) of then-living believers. The other happenings of the time period will be terrible & horrifying events of God’s judgment upon the evil of the world (Revelation 4-19); but the events will not make a black void of the globe. The world will not “end.” Instead, these judgments will shake up the nations and their leaders, particularly the Jewish people. The course of the Gentiles’ time of world rulership will fully done (Romans 11:25); and the time for a Divine/ Jewish empire will arise. The judgments are necessary for preparing the world of mankind to receive its rightful King… to bring ecological restoration & balance, equity and righteousness back into the world. Some have referred to the events as the Apocalypse, or The Day of the Lord, or the Great Tribulation or Jacob’s Trouble or the 70th Week of Daniel. All of these names serve as titles for the same 7 year time period that usher in the establishment of Jesus’ global kingdom.
Unfortunately, said restoration and rule of Jesus will not occur until the enemies of God gather—at the end of the 7 year period—against Him in the valley of Megiddo (Jehoshaphat) for the Battle of Armageddon (Joel 3). Of course, God wins, and along side Him will be myriads of previously resurrected and raptured believers (Jude). These will rule with the victorious Jesus (Romans 8, Revelation 20). The nations and peoples will be sorted like a shepherd separates goats from the sheep (Matthew 25). Disbelieving people and nations will be taken/vanish from existence by the command of Jesus, so that the global Kingdom of Jesus may begin in true harmony and peace.
A long-forgotten phrase that better represents the scriptural, Christian understanding of humanity’s near future (as described above) is “the Hereafter.” It is appropriate, because it conveys that after certain prophecies are fulfilled, humanity will continue here on earth… but in a different way of life, under different spiritual & societal structures and ecology than we presently experience. The dynamic will be otherworldly, being almost a full restoration of the first age of mankind, as described in Genesis 2 and the first verses of Genesis 3 of the Bible. The next age to come will last “1,000 years” (Revelation 20).
THE FINAL JUDGMENT, THE FULL DESTRUCTION OF THIS WORLD, THE MAKING OF A NEW WORLD & THE ETERNAL AGE
Revelation, chapters 20-22, disclose yet another transition of this world and its creatures into an age beyond the Hereafter. Again, a set of horrific events, which could be called the Last Rebellion (Revelation 20), will rise up at the end of Jesus’ 1000 year rule. God will immediately put down the satanic revolt, called Gog & Magog (Revelation 20), and God will usher all humanity (dead and living) of all the ages past into the Judgment Day. Here’s how that will go, according to Revelation 20 and Jesus Himself (John 5:15-29).
Just as he will summon believers (dead and alive) to join Him in the skies before the Great Tribulation), Jesus will summon the dead, from the time frame of His 1000 years rule, to be resurrected. Some of those from that time period will have believed, some not. But, Jesus will also command all of the disbelievers from all times past to be brought up from Hell to stand before Him.
A. Those who did NOT believe the Messiah (Jesus) is God’s Son, the only risen & worshipful Savior of Mankind, will be raised for the sole purpose of hearing their final sentencing to an eternity in a “Lake of Fire.” And, because they chose (in life) to depend on their own paltry merits (compared with the credited perfection that God offered by His Son), Jesus will judge their degree of eternal torment, according to their deeds.
B. Those who DID (in life) believe the Messiah (Jesus) is God’s Son, the only risen and worshipful Savior of Mankind, will be raised for the sole purpose of being fully endowed with eternal life… due to the merits of Jesus having been credited to them by God’s grace and through their faith.
So, the dead at that time (which necessarily excludes those having been raised at the rapture) will be raised. Disbelieving unrighteousness (from before and throughout Jesus’ earthly kingdom) will be raised to damnation… the same damnation which all unrepentant disbelievers must endure; but the believing righteous (from the 1000 years) will be raised to eternal life… the same eternal life which all believers (who came before the 1000 years rule of Jesus) shall enjoy.
This begs the question: where will the righteous spend their eternal life? Revelation 21, as well as Hebrews 1:10-12 and 2 Peter 3 indicate that God will destroy this present Earth and make a new world. At that time, also called The Day of the Lord by Peter, the world will certainly be turned into nothingness by use of fire (2 Peter 3). The new world God makes will be entirely pure, having no pain or sorrow and every bliss with God without end. It will be the eternal age of God directly communing, uninterrupted with His redeemed creation.
The next step in the course of God’s relationship to humans in this world is NOT utter annihilation of the world. Rather, Jesus and His Apostles teach us (from their records in the Bible) that there is at least 1,007 years left before this physical planet’s existence is done. Yes, the people and creatures of Earth and the world itself will undergo horrific events that must take place for all evil things to be made right. The big picture of God’s cleansing and folding up a world, whose creatures rebelled against Him is neither a quick nor painless process. Yet, the progression of these events is superintended by God Himself; and soon the Son of God will bring in another Age of the world and rule it until the time of what will be eternal death for disbelievers but eternal life for those who embrace Jesus (Yeshua) of Nazareth as their rightful Lord and God.
No, the World Won’t End Next Week and There’s No Such Thing as a Christian Numerologist | The Exchange https://t.co/WF1IJNyFJj
— Sam Kean (@snkean) September 17, 2017
‘Be Ready’: says Franklin Graham, but Faithwire adds in the “Sept 23” date set. SMH https://t.co/152Uscdrzq
— Sam Kean (@snkean) September 17, 2017
“I feel like the Lord is leading me to do it.”
“Those were my friend’s parting words to me. I told him not to follow this leading, but he’d had an experience he “really felt was from the Lord.” I tried to explain what the Bible had to say about his choice. In fact, many had. But, he had an experience, and he wasn’t budging. So off he went—into his error, out of the church, and away from Jesus.
This situation it so common in churches across the spectrum that you could probably fill in details from similarly painful conversations. Add to that our culture’s commitment to an expressive individualism that exalts actualizing our desires above conforming to God’s, and we’ve set the stage for rough times when trying to convince someone that what they “feel led to do” may not be the Holy Spirit at all.
No wonder some respond to this problem by simply denying God’s Spirit speaks to us today. My point here is not to debate that point, since others have done so (e.g., here and here).
Regardless, the Scriptures admonish us to keep in step with the Spirit (Gal. 5:25). And there are some ways we should all be able to agree one cannot do that. Here are four….”
“Fascism and Nazism are often construed as ultra-right-wing political movements, and certainly there are some strong affinities between fascism and the political right. However, when the historian Zeev Sternhell published his important study about early 20th-century French fascism, he entitled his book, Neither Right Nor Left, because he recognized that fascism did not fit nicely into the left-right political spectrum. Stanley Payne, in his magisterial History of Fascism, largely agrees, arguing that fascism was not only anti-socialist, but it was also anti-conservative.
One of the key differences that Payne identifies between fascism and conservatism is their attitudes toward religion and secular modernity. Payne argues that “fascism basically presupposed a post-Christian, post-religious, secular, and immanent frame of reference.” My own recent book, Hitler’s Religion, demonstrates that Hitler’s own ideology was largely secular and anti-Christian, though he often disguised his views in public.
The alt-right is often accused of having Nazi tendencies — and some self-proclaimed alt-right figures, such as Andrew Anglin, editor of The Daily Stormer website, overtly identify themselves as neo-Nazi. Certain white nationalist and neo-Nazi sites, including Anglin’s, have lost their Internet hosting recently, and may no longer be accessible on the web. Nevertheless, it is instructive to examine their views on religion and secularism, as previously published, to see if they correspond to the “neither right nor left” narrative.
One feature that emerges clearly from various alt-right writers is that many of them are enamored of secular, anti-Christian thinkers, such as Friedrich Nietzsche, who was famous for his dictum that “God is dead.” As noted here recently (see “Evolution and the Alt-Right, Continued”), they also embrace Darwinism with alacrity, since they see it as the foundation for their “scientific racism.” In addition to rejecting human equality, they tend to cast doubt on human freedom by espousing biological determinism, the idea that human traits — including moral characteristics — are primarily hereditary. Some in the alt-right even laud the Conservative Revolution, a movement in early 20th-century Germany that wedded a secular worldview (often Nietzschean) with authoritarian politics.
The alt-right is a disparate movement with a variety of religious perspectives. However, one point on which almost all alt-right proponents agree is that — in their view — most forms of contemporary Christianity are corrupt, since they promote a universalistic, egalitarian vision of humanity spurned by the alt-right. However, there is no consensus in the alt-right about what should replace present forms of Christianity.
Some leading figures of the alt-right, such as Richard Spencer, are sympathetic with paganism. Others hope to reconstruct Christianity as a religion for the “white race.” Yet others promote pantheism; a 2015 article in the alt-right Radix Journal, for example, endorsed the “evolutionary pantheism” of the Polish intellectual, Jan Stachniuk.
Interestingly, like the alt-right, the religious views of the Nazi hierarchy were also varied. Hitler told his associates that he did not care what they believed about the after-life, as long as they gave him their full allegiance and obeisance in this world. Nonetheless, “evolutionary pantheism” is an apt description of the religious views of Hitler and his personal assistant, Martin Bormann, both of whom deified nature. Hitler considered the laws of nature, especially the Darwinian struggle for existence, the arbiter of morality, no matter how cruel that struggle might be.
Other Nazi leaders, such as Alfred Rosenberg and Heinrich Himmler, wanted to resurrect ancient German paganism. Yet other Nazi officials adhered to the “German Christian” movement, which was an anti-Semitic, Nazified version of Protestantism.
When one examines some of the moral positions taken by figures in the alt-right, some of them seem consistent with religious morality. However, this is only superficial, because for the alt-right white racism trumps all other moral standards. Anglin states, “We must win by any means necessary,” so for him, the end — promoting the white race — justifies the means.
Some on the alt-right are pro-abortion, because they believe that abortion often eliminates the weak, the sick, and those of races they deem inferior. This is very similar to the Nazi position, which rejected abortions for healthy German women, but encouraged and sometimes even required abortions for women with disabilities or women who were non-German.
Alt-right discussions of religion also reflect a secularizing tendency, often adopting an instrumentalist view of religion. This means that they are not trying to discover which religion is true (probably because they do not think there is a true religion). Rather, they think that religion should be judged, not by its correspondence to reality, but by its usefulness (in advancing the cause of white racism).
In an article on “Identitarian Religion” in Radix Journal, Alfred Clark (some authors appear to be pseudonyms) argues that religion emerged because it has adaptive value in the evolutionary process. Christianity, he argues, has become maladaptive, so it should be replaced by a religion that reinforces racial identity. He admits that this could be an altered form of Christianity, but he also thinks it could be paganism. He even encourages atheists and agnostics to coexist with identitarian religion: “Since,” he informs us, “identitarian religion is not at odds with nature, and thus not at odds with evolutionary science, it does not threaten secular knowledge but offers itself as an additional societal glue.”
Clark is not alone. Spencer, who edited Radix Journal before it lost web hosting, also judges religion by its ability to advance his racist agenda. He admires Greco-Roman religion and paganism, though he admits that he does not practice these religions. Clearly for many in the alt-right religion is subservient to their white racist ideology, and apparently any religion will do, as long as white racism is paramount in it.
Though the alt-right does not have any unified religious position, they generally seem to be more influenced by secular ideologies, such as Nietzscheism, social Darwinism, biological determinism, and collectivism, than by any particular religion. While some disdain Christianity, at least in most of its manifestations, others warn against expressing out-and-out hostility to Christianity per se, lest they alienate people unnecessarily. In their attitudes toward religion — just as in many other areas of their ideology — it does seem to me that the alt-right is “neither right nor left.””*
Dr. Weikart is professor of history at California State University, Stanislaus, and the author of three books on Hitler: From Darwin to Hitler, Hitler’s Ethic, and Hitler’s Religion. For more visit www.darwintohitler.com.
*[article copied and pasted here under Fair Use for educational purposes; see original article HERE]