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Manifested Sons of God: Message of the Enemies of the Cross?

The enemies of the cross wield a two-edged sword. One edge is the self-esteem edge…this would be found in the teachings of Joel Osteen or Joseph Prince.  A message that stresses “you” and “your best life”, “grace” and the “goodness” of God over and against anything else found in Scripture or reality. It is a feelings based and appearance based Christianity.  A kind of Kingdom of Cognitive (Christian)Therapy…feeling good and looking good is god. If you mention the cross or the cost…you will be labeled a Pharisee, religious, or judgmental.  Encouragement is important. It is not the Gospel. It is not central to our walk.  Grace is essential, but is never the excuse.  Many who support a Joel Osteen or a Joseph Prince have never encountered the Cross.  Many attend their meetings, read their books, and follow them on Twitter, but don’t know Christ and if they do…they don’t understand the walk or depth of our calling.

The other edge of the sword is the Dominion/Kingdom Now/Nar/Manifested Sons of God message. This is the edge that takes the man-centered gospel of “feeling good” and inflates into a mandate for the Church. Add a little leaven to the Kingdom of Cognitive (Christian) Therapy and it grows into a message of godhood.  It is the “kingdom” message as written by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby. It appeals to the masses and is mastered by men who misunderstand the nature of Jesus Christ (and His message) or by men who believe their mandate is the answer.  The cross was merely the starting point for them to, “Go forth and conquer.”

Man inflates.

Man creates a narrative and pushes it no matter the cost.

Man has always and will always want to be his own savior, lord, or king and will always choose to “serve” by controlling or dominating.

Man wants power; wants the feeling of being in charge; and ultimately vindication.

The Cross deflates.

The Cross is the narrative and is its own cost.

The Cross is the power of God and the answer to and for man…believers included.

Remember…many in Israel missed the purpose and work of Jesus Christ because they expected Him to destroy Rome’s dominion, take the throne of David,  and govern from Jerusalem. They did not understand or accept the Cross. Today…many (of the same spirit) are now saying that the Church’s mandate is to do what Jesus didn’t do the first time. They do not understand or accept the Cross.

This is a bit personal for me.  My uncle left me his library many years ago.  It was full of books and audiotapes of William Branham’s sermons/teachings.  When I first was born from above (coming out of Mormonism) I went to a church where the pastor idolized William Branham and John Alexander Dowie. Branham pushed the manifested sons of God theology/latter rain etc…, He gave it a voice.  Others have picked it up…especially Earl Paulk.  Oh…by the way…if you use Branham to prove your points on Christology or if your teaching is similar to his..YOU NEED HELP.  Likewise…if you base your marriage on the practices of John Alexander Dowie…YOU NEED HELP.

Here are a few examples of the shades and shadows of the “modernized” manifested sons of God theology.

Bill Johnson version…

There are measures and levels of anointing that cause the reality of the Scripture to change for us. A generation is forming now that will walk in an anointing that has never been known by mankind, including the original 12 disciples. This generation won’t need natural illustrations to help them understand what their spiritual task is. They will move into spiritual territory that defies the natural order. God wants to give us revelations and experiences of Heaven that have no earthly parallel. Jesus told Nicodemus, “If I have told you earthly things and you do not believe, how will you believe if I tell you heavenly things ?” (John 3:12) He longed to talk about things that His disciples were not ready to receive…Jesus walked in an anointing of the Spirit beyond measure.  He constantly illustrated superior truths by stepping outside the boundaries of nature. The more you and I become empowered and directed by the Spirit of God, the more our lives should defy natural principles, and release the spiritual realities God intended for us to enjoy. (Shifting Shadows of Supernatural Power p.191)

Rick Joyner version…

The apostles will rule the Church through establishing independent churches, unaffiliated with the corrupt denominations. The exception which is currently underway, is that denominational churches would abandon  being separate, join the movement coming under their leadership. It is essential to the Latter Rain movement for the church to be unified as one, under a central leadership.  Otherwise Christ cannot be incarnated (manifested) in the Church and give his power to conquer the world for Christ.

That the world will be conquered through an elite group of overcomers who produce signs and wonders unlike anything ever seen, even in the early church by the apostles. This they believe will lead us to the greatest revival of history. An endtime harvest of billions of souls, where the majority of the world will be won to Christ and the kingdom would be established or ready to be received by Christ. “This harvest will be so great that no one will look back at the early church as a standard; all will be saying that the Lord has certainly saved His best wine for last. The early church was a firstfruits offering, truly this will be a harvest! It was said of the Apostle Paul that he was turning the world upside down; it will be said of the apostles soon to be anointed that they have turned an upside down world right side up. Nations will tremble at the mention of their name.” (Rick Joyner, Restoration, may/June 1988, the Harvest)

“Angelic appearances will be common to the saints and a visible glory of the Lord will appear upon some for extended periods of time as power flows through them. There will be no plague, disease, or physical condition, including lost limbs, AIDS, poison gas, or radiation, which will resist the healing and miracle gifts working in the saints during this time” (Rick Joyner, The Harvest, 128-129)

Bill Hamon version…

“The Church will gain victory over the last enemy, death. Victory speaks of a battle being fought. The last day saints will wage and win a warfare against death. The last generation saints will come to translating faith in preparation for participation in the translation.” (The Eternal Church, P.349)

“The Earth and all of creation is waiting for the manifestation of the sons of God, the time when they will come into their maturity and immortalization… When the Church receives its full inheritance and redemption then creation will be redeemed from its cursed condition of decay, change and death… the Church has a responsibility and ministry to the rest of creation. Earth and Its natural creation Is anxiously waiting for the Church to reach full maturity and come to full sonship. When the Church realizes its full sonship, its bodily redemption will cause a redemptive chain reaction throughout all of creation.” (Bill Hamon p. 385 The Eternal Church)

 

Johnny Enlow version…

“We have entered an age when aging will be reversed.  There is now a glory invading the atmosphere that carries a new grace of longevity.  It will become common for God’s kids to carry on in strength while 100 years old.  Then it will extend beyond that.  I see this new descending glory as a cloud touching our atmosphere.  It is necessary to live “tall” enough to touch this glory.  This is not about being holy enough but about carrying the right narrative of this age of restoration of all things.  Those who will carry the glory of this His story will begin to see this shift in their own bodies.  This is not going to be able to be accessed if you are in “I’ll fly away” mode.  If your mind is in escape mode your body will follow.  Rather this will be a progressive reality for those willing to contend for the goodness of God in the land of the living.”

Jonathan Welton (author of Raptureless)  version…

“You are an ambassador and citizen of heaven. You have the fullness of the Godhead in you. You are not to live merely as a human. Yet we must not forget that we live in an active warzone with a rebellious defeated enemy that won’t quit fighting.” (FB post)

“Clement of Alexandria, one of the early Church fathers, described the atonement this way: “The Logos of God had become man so that you might learn from a man how a man may become God.” Similarly, the third century theologian, Origen, wrote, “From Christ began the union of the Divine with the human nature in order that the human, by communion with the Divine, might rise and also become Divine.” Athanasius, a significant father within the Eastern Orthodox Church, had a grasp of the incarnation and an understanding of God apart from the Platonism that muddled Augustine’s thinking. About the incarnation, he wrote, “The Word was made man so that we might be made God.”

Quotes like these can sound scary to a lot of people. It sounds too much, perhaps, like claiming to be God. However, our participation in the divine nature is really important to our identity as the Bride of Christ, because Christ needs to marry an equal. This, of course, does not mean we become God. The Trinity, the Godhead, is uncreated divinity, self-existing, eternal, always omnipresent and omnipotent. The Godhead is unique and will never be replicated. However, as the Bride of Christ, we become “created divinity”. God incarnated to help humans become incarnate…”

“As citizens of heaven (Phil. 3:20), and as ambassadors of heaven (2 Cor. 5:20), we are here with a mission. Jesus is not coming back until we finish the “Apostolic Mission” the mission of the Apostolos, to implement the Culture of Heaven into the Culture of the Earth.

Yes, someday the Church will have completed this mission. Sons and daughters of King Jesus will know who they are and will live out their identity as righteous people. Suffering will be brought to a minimum in the earth realm. Sin will have been massively decreased. The sex industry will have collapsed and broken families will be restored. People will live longer, healthier and more joy-filled lives. There will be no more orphans, no more starvation, and sickness will be rare.

All the enemies of God will bow under Jesus’ feet until finally death is put under His feet as the last foe (1 Cor. 15:26). All other foes will be subdued as we put them under our feet (Romans 16:20).

The day will come when the culturing of the Apostolos has completed the Apostolic Mission. On that day, Jesus will be able to touch His toe to earth in physical form and finally say as the Roman Emperor’s did in days past, “This place feels a lot like home!”(Raptureless pp.233-34)

Martin Trench (Co-author of Victorious Eschatology with Harold Eberle ) version…

“I don’t know how you imagine it; maybe as some futuristic utopia, or maybe like the beautiful paradise of Pandora in the movie Avatar (minus the scary reptiles and the mercenary invaders), but whatever metaphor we imagine, the future is bright, because God is moving in many ways, exposing corruption, inspiring change, increasing our knowledge, working through all people and all creation to lead is onto a brighter, better world – a truly Golden Age. In this current Age we live in, we get the opportunity to “taste and see that the Lord is good!” (Psalm 34:8) we get to have a foretaste of “the powers of the Age to come” (Hebrews 6:5). It seems, in the context of the book of Hebrews (which is all about the very near end of the Old Covenant and its Age, and the full meaning of the Old Covenant symbols and promises as fulfilled spiritually in Christ and in our lives as his followers), the writer is telling his readers that not only should they now totally discard all the trappings of the former Age, and not only should they live in the reality of a new life of faith in Christ in this Age, but he tells them that what they are experiencing in this newly born Age is simply a foretaste of what is to come in the next Age – as the kingdom is ever-increasing, so their foretaste is destined to increase and enlarge until it blossoms into another, yet future, coming Age where such experiences are normal, common place, part of life.

If our eyes were opened, to quote Elizabeth Barrat Browing – “Earth’s crammed with heaven, And every common bush afire with God; But only he who sees, takes off his shoes – The rest sit round it and pluck blackberries” – we would see that “ever bush is ablaze ” – Moses eyes were opened. He saw the blazing glory of that other world shining and burning in a non destructive way through the bush. But one day it will be as if heaven and earth merge into one – the whole universe suddenly evolves into an upgrade, as it is visible, tangibly, eternally infused with the life-force of God’s very self – the whole of creation is divinized, it becomes timeless, no longer subject to decay, because that is only a phenomena of time. And what about us? We have had this wonderful “Age-enduring life” in our “spiritual bodies” expressing our individual separateness still, to a certain extent. But now, we all become fully divinized as well. I don’t image that we will “lose ourselves” in God, but I think we will be fully God-realized, for want of a better term. I suppose there is a better term in theology, it called Theosis – the experience of being divinized by being so full in union with God, that the two are one – not just it principle, but in experience. That is when “the end shall come”. “(http://martintrench.com/the-ancient-biblical-teaching-of-the-ages-part-8/)

 

Any thoughts ?

 

 

 

 

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The NAR’s Gospel

Here are some quotes from the book Father-Son Theology by Harold Eberle.  In it’s second edition, the title was changed to Systematic Theology for the New Apostolic Reformation An Exposition in Father-Son Theology and a forward by Dr. C. Peter Wagner was added.

“There is a separation between God and humanity, but it is on the part of humanity not God. Let me explain.

When Adam and Eve ate of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, the number one result was that they became aware of good and evil. This is exactly what God said changed: “Behold, the man has become like one of Us, knowing good and evil (Gen. 3:22) Genesis 3:7 tells us, “Then the eyes of both of them were opened…” Because they knew good and evil, they knew that God was good and that they had sinned.

Knowing the difference between God and them, they became ashamed: “they knew that they were naked” (Gen 3:17) In Genesis 3:8, we read:

“They heard the sound of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and the man and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord”

Adam and Eve were ashamed so they tried to distance themselves from God. God did not distance Himself from Adam and Eve. He pursued them. Because Adam and Eve were ashamed, God made garments for them to cover themselves (Gen 3:21). The garments were not for God’s benefit. They were for Adam and Eve to feel less ashamed.

Before Adam and Eve ate of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, they could not see the difference (in relation to holiness) between themselves and God. Therefore, they were unashamed to be in the presence of God. They causally and freely talked with God, but once they ate of that tree they could see what goodness is, and they could see that they did not measure up. So “the man and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God” (Gen 3:8) Shame caused them to separate themselves from God….God did not abandon humanity because of Adam’s sin. There was no chasm of infinity created between God and humanity. In fact, the New Testament assures us that God is very close to every person. (Acts 17:27)”  pp.275,276

 

“Reformed theology is wrong. Humanity is not eternally separated from God because of Adam’s sin. ” p.282

 

“It is time to rethink what influence Adam’s sin has had on the world….

Consider an alternative understanding. In Romans 5:12, notice where sin went as a result of Adam’s sin. We are told that “sin entered into the world.” The word world has been translated from the Greek word kosmos. This Greek word can refer to humanity, but it can also refer to creation, the earth, or corrupt society. Most often it is translated as “world,” referring to creation.

In Romans 5:12, kosmos must be referring to creation because three chapters later, Paul explained that “creation was subjected to futility” (Rom 8:20). Paul also talked about a day when “creation itself also will be set free from its slavery to corruption” (Rom 8:21). So then, we see Paul’s understanding that sin influenced all of creation, not just Adam’s descendants. This implies that Adam’s sin came into all of the world in the sense of creation.

Consider what God said to Cain, the immediate descendant of Adam and Eve:

“And if you do not do well, sin is crouching at the door; and its desire is for you, but you must master it. (Gen 4:7)

Notice that God did not say, “Sin is inside of you because your parents have sinned.” God warned Cain that sin was “crouching at the door”; that is, sin was outside of him waiting to come into his life. pp.293,294

 

If you ask evangelical Christians, “What is the gospel?” most of them will answer something like this:

“Jesus died for our sins, and if we accept Him as Savior, we will be saved and go to heaven when we die.”

That is certainly good news. It is good news in keeping with the truth that all people sin and need a Savior. This message corresponds to the Classical/Reformed view of God and the penal substitution view of the atonement. In particular, it is founded in the idea that people need to be saved, first and foremost, from the wrath of God.

Of course, it is good news that believers will not experience the wrath of God, but upon further consideration, we learn that this gospel is a very limited understanding of salvation. This limited understanding is often called the gospel of salvation.

In contrast to the gospel of salvation is the gospel of the Kingdom. The gospel of the Kingdom is what we see Jesus and His disciples preaching…

There are important differences between the gospel of salvation and the gospel of the kingdom.

One of the differences is their foundation in the work of Jesus. The gospel of salvation is founded in the death of Jesus, while the gospel of the Kingdom is founded in the death, resurrection, ascension, and enthronement of Jesus. pp.469-71

 

Teachers of Reformed Theology champion the gospel of salvation. In line with that gospel, they teach that in order to be saved people must realize that they are sinners, turn their hearts toward God, and accept Jesus as Savior. This is considered the path to salvation.

1.Realize one’s own sinfulness

2. Turn one’s heart to God

3. Accept Jesus as Savior….

If Christians embrace the gospel of the Kingdom as the gospel, then they will identify the path to salvation differently. To see this, consider how our Lord preached: “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand” (Matt 4:17) The response expected from the person who hears this gospel is to “repent.”

When modern Christians hear this word, repent, they often envision a person feeling sorry for their sins, but that is reading the Bible through the overly sin-conscience mind of Western Christianity. The word repent (metanoeo in Greek) actually means “turn”. Turning may include turning away from sin, but that is not the primary focus. In the context of the gospel of the Kingdom, repent refers to a person turning in a way that brings their life into conformity with the Kingdom of God.

This understanding would have been much more tangible in the culture of Bible times. Kings often went out with their armies to conquer various people groups. When a new king was victorious, people were expected to surrender and acknowledge the new king. The people would often be allowed rights as citizens of the new kingdom, so long as they swore allegiance to the new king.

In a comparative fashion, Jesus is Lord, and He reigns over the Kingdom of God. Any person who hears this message and acknowledges the Lordship of Jesus Christ is welcomed into the Kingdom of God. pp.473-474

 

Is anybody else seeing what I am seeing ?

 

 

 

Apostolic Council on Eschatology, NAR Preterism, and Another Gospel

A day after C. Peter Wagner died, I noticed a Facebook post by Jim Wies.  Here is what it said…

“At the apostolic summit tonight, the spirit of prophecy filled the place in a profound way, and the Lord declared that on this day when Dr. C. Peter Wagner passed on to his reward, God has raised up a theologian to carry on the legacy of shaping the theological perspective of what Dr. Wagner declared to be the New Apostolic Reformation. So then leadership blessed Jonathan Welton and prayed for a new mantle.”

And then there was a picture of Jonathan Welton surrounded by others, being prayed for.

Read my blog to find information on Welton and his teachings…but first let me give you a quote from Jonathan Welton’s FB page from yesterday,

“You are an ambassador and citizen of heaven. You have the fullness of the Godhead in you. You are not to live merely as a human. Yet we must not forget that we live in an active warzone with a rebellious defeated enemy that won’t quit fighting.”

Combine that with what I wrote about last week (here is the quote from his book Understanding the Whole Bible) and what do you get ??

“Clement of Alexandria, one of the early Church fathers, described the atonement this way: “The Logos of God had become man so that you might learn from a man how a man may become God.” Similarly, the third century theologian, Origen, wrote, “From Christ began the union of the Divine with the human nature in order that the human, by communion with the Divine, might rise and also become Divine.” Athanasius, a significant father within the Eastern Orthodox Church, had a grasp of the incarnation and an understanding of God apart from the Platonism that muddled Augustine’s thinking. About the incarnation, he wrote, “The Word was made man so that we might be made God.”

Quotes like these can sound scary to a lot of people. It sounds too much, perhaps, like claiming to be God. However, our participation in the divine nature is really important to our identity as the Bride of Christ, because Christ needs to marry an equal. This, of course, does not mean we become God. The Trinity, the Godhead, is uncreated divinity, self-existing, eternal, always omnipresent and omnipotent. The Godhead is unique and will never be replicated. However, as the Bride of Christ, we become “created divinity”. God incarnated to help humans become incarnate…”

I don’t have much to say about Jonathan Welton anymore.  He says enough on his own.

There are other members of this Apostolic Council on Eschatology that is propelling Jonathan Welton into the position of theologian for the NAR.

Martin Trench is on the council. (please see my post Victorious Eschatology An Example of Roots or Results) New Age guru and professional in building mega-churches.

Joe Mcintyre is on the council.  Here is part of a Facebook post he put up today…

“There is no gospel of salvation. Salvation is just one aspect of the Kingdom. Father is not trying to get us to heaven, He is determined to bring heaven to earth.

God has demonstrated His power in raising Jesus from the dead and enthroning Him with all authority in heaven and on EARTH!

The gospel of the kingdom is not about getting to heaven. It’s about demonstrating the goodness of God to the inhabitants of this earth and inviting them to accept our King.”

Matthew Hester is on the council.  Check out his Dominion Mandate/Manifesto on his DominionChurch.net site…Here is a small quote on his beliefs…

“The word “eklessia” means “those who are called out to rule!” This describes who we are. Theologians differ over how much of the planet will be totally subdued before the Lord comes back. That should not be our concern. Our concern should be that we are headed in that direction, flowing in our dominion assignment, knowing that He is coming back to a battle-tested, obedient Bride (Rev 19:6-7). When He comes we will become immortal and remain on the earth to rule and reign with Him. Until then, we have work to do. Psa 110:1 and Acts 3:21 tells us that we are to subdue the enemies of Christ and present them at His feet to be His footstool!

Our Dominion Assignment addresses 3 major areas of human life:

  1. We are to bring the Gospel to fallen individuals
  2. We are to bring redemption to fallen institutions (family, church, economic order, civil government)
  3.  We are to bring rebellious spirits under  Christ’s authority. This will happen city by city and nation by nation.

J.D. King is on the council.  Here is an excerpt from his October 18th blog.

“If men are by essence evil, then Jesus who was without sin was not really a man. The Bible declares,“it was necessary for Jesus to be made in every respect like us” (Hebrews 2:17). Some overleverage the Lord’s virgin birth to solve this conundrum. Their argument is that since Jesus’ humanity only stems from Mary, He avoided the imputation of sin – because it is supposedly passed through the earthly father. I certainly adhere to the truth of the virgin birth, but I think that it’s sometimes twisted to make Jesus into a different sort of man. It’s difficult to argue that Jesus genuinely represents humanity if He wasn’t truly like us in every way.

Let me get down to my underlying point. We live in a desperately fallen world where there is a vicious propensity toward sin. With the single exception of Jesus, everyone ultimately becomes the embodiment of this corruption. However, that is not because of biology or ancestry. It is because of our own deplorable choices.

Nevertheless, sin isn’t our essence. It is a tragic degradation of God’s design! It is the failure to live up to who we were made to be. Through our own foolish acts of defiance, we have fallen short of the glory (Romans 3:23).

Keep in mind that the problem is not with Adam. It’s with you.”

There are other members. You can check it out here. http://www.endtimecouncil.com/

I am worried about where this is going.  It is not good. Sound the alarm.  There is a connection between preterism/partial, and its teachers, and  the “heaven to earth” message and the NAR.

The sad part is how many people just accept stuff.  Don’t say a word. Never protest or check.

Are we asleep ?  or do we just not care anymore ?

 

 

 

 

Victorious Eschatology …An Example of Roots or Results?

I can’t tell if partial preterism – the victorious or optimistic view of the end times- is the starting point of false teaching, the magnet which draws false teachers, or a little bit of both. I am finding eye-opening things concerning the sources and methods of its teachers.

Harold Eberle teaches that God is not omnipotent, omniscient, or omnipresent. He only takes the Bible “seriously”. He is not a “strict” creationist and examines theistic evolution in his NAR systematic theology. Also, man is not that bad and man is not separated from God due to Adam’s fall.

Jonathan Welton teaches that Jesus did not die in our place as a substitute, He did not pay the penalty for our sin, and did not receive the wrath of God. He believes in “created divinity”.

Both Eberle and Welton lie and distort the historical record throughout their books.

And now we come to the third host of the partial preterism virus…Martin Trench.

Read the following.  Add it to what we know about Harold Eberle’s and Jonathan Welton’s teachings and let me know what you come up with. Feel free to contact me if you need more information on these books or authors.

Here are a few examples of what Martin Trench Teaches. Mr. Trench is the co-author of Victorious Eschatology A Partial Preterist View. Harold Eberle is the other co-author. I don’t know what to say other than…stop listening to these guys. Period.

“In Revelation, as well as the constellations previously mentioned, we see this picture of the “heavenly Jerusalem” and it has “twelve gates” (the twelve gates or houses of the zodiac) and each gate is a pearl (symbolizing the moon, who passes through each gate), there is a river of life (Aquarius), and there are twelve foundation stones – the same twelve stones that were in the High Priests breastplate – the 12 birth stones of the zodiac, and they are listed in reverse order from the usual order – that’s because they are symbolizing the Ages, which happen in reverse order to the monthly/annual order of the zodiac (that’s why its called the “PREcession of the Equinoxes and not the PROcession, because the zodiac go in a cycle one way each year, with each constellation providing one month, but they go through the Ages of the Great Year in exactly the opposite order) – that’s why we know for sure it is speaking of the Ages.

“Genesis speaks of Joseph having a dream of a ladder to heaven in which “the angels were ascending and descending”. To the ancients, each of the stars were represented by an angel (or vice versa). In one if CS Lewis’s Narnia books, The Voyage of the Dawn Treader, Eustice meets an angelic-like being who is a “star”; “In our world,” says Eustace, “a star is a huge ball of flaming gas.” Even in your world, my son,’ (says the Star), that is not what a star is, but only what it is made of.” – that is an idea from the ancient world. Stars are personified. The angels ascending and descending symbolize (at least in part) the constellations of the Ages ascending and descending. That sheds a bit more light on what Jesus meant when he said “you will see heaven opened, and the angels of God ascending and descending on the Son of Man” (John 1:51) meaning – “it is with me – in my ministry, life, death, and resurrection – that one Age will descend, and a new Age will ascend – this is the cusp of the Ages, and a new Age is being born”.

Allegories are shown, like Jonah being swallowed by a “great fish” (Pisces) and kept in its belly for three days and nights, before being spat onto the land to bring God’s message to the people of Nineveh (non-Israelites) who then repent and receive his message – this is a foretaste of the Piscean Age, which was birthed in the death and resurrection of Jesus: “No sign will be given to this generation, except the sign of the prophet Jonah. For as Jonah was in the belly of the great fish for three days and three nights, so will the Son of Man be in the heart of the earth for three days and three nights”, (Matthew 12:40), and which leads to God’s word being preached to all nations, (not just Israel) who will gladly accept the message. (Notice that it is the “sign” of Jonah – the story contains a “sign” a “symbol” an “allegory” in picture form).”

“Another allegory is seen in Jesus telling his disciples to “As you enter the city, a man carrying a jar of water will meet you. Follow him to the house that he enters”. (Luke 22:10). It was very unusual to see a man carrying a bucket of water – it was a chore or job that was normally, in that culture, given to women and children. All through the Bible we see stories of women going to a well to fetch water. But they would see a man carrying water (symbolizing Aquarius) and they were to “follow him” and he would take them to a “house” and when they went, they entered an “upper room” where “everything will be prepared”. This allegorically and symbolically speaks of Jesus sending us into the Aquarian Age to be taken to a higher place to enjoy God’s feast which is prepared.”

The last 2,000+ years have been the New Covenant Age, or Age of Pisces. To be honest, the term “New Covenant Age” is the wrong way to put it – because although the Old Covenant came to an end in 70AD, the New Covenant continues on forever, even though this Age will come to an end. The New Covenant lasts forever because it is mediated by Jesus, who lives forever (Hebrews 7:25). But certainly, the current Age, (the Age of Pisces) does come to an end, and the New Covenant continues on in expanded growth into the next Age, because the New Covenant ushered in the “Kingdom of God” or “the reign of God’ or, as one translation puts it, “God’s New World and New Way of Living” (Good as New Translation).

God is progressively creating this new world and new way of living, and he is doing it through people. As people change, as people embrace God’s new world and new way of living, and come into greater and greater harmony with how things are truly supposed to be, so they become a positive influence upon their world, and like a small piece of yeast put into some dough, it gradually spreads with a life of its own and “leavens the whole batch” (Luke 13:21) or like a tiny seed planted in the ground, it gradually grows and becomes a fruitful tree and provides shelter for others, (Matthew 13:31-33). Just as the Universe continues to expand at the speed on light, so God’s kingdom continues to expand as his light shines forth more and more in and through the lives, beliefs, behavior, and influence of more and more people. We are collaborators in creation.

“Isaiah 9:7
Of the increase of his government and of peace there will be no end

So, the term “New Covenant Age” is a misnomer, but the Age of Pisces will end, the Age which began with, and will culminate in – a miraculous catch of “fish”. We are living in a time when the Age of Pisces is descending and the Age of Aquarius is dawning. I have already pointed out (here) that Ages overlap for quite some period of time and it is difficult to put an exact time on when one Age has started and when the previous Age has finally, fully passed away, but by circa 2150AD, the Age of Pisces will have fully passed away and the Age of Aquarius will be the only ruling Age – however, Pisces is already “descending” and Aquarius is already “ascending” – changes are underway. So what does this next Age look like? As God’s kingdom continues to advance, and as more and more people are influenced by God’s new world which is emerging in our midst and his new way of living revealed in and through Jesus, what does it blossom into? There is much talk about the coming Aquarian Age both inside the Christian church, and outside of it in alternative spiritualities, in other religions, even in the secular world – everyone has their own take on what the coming Age looks like, and to be honest, some of those ideas have very little to do with Jesus, the scriptures, or the true nature of God. Some ideas are positively occult and superstitious – I’m not talking about those kind of ideas. I don’t see the coming Age as one where the streets will be full of occult bookshops and crystal ball gazers, all claiming to be part of the Aquarian Age.

I see the coming Age as one where all superstition, (including religious traditions which make the true message that Jesus brought of no effect – Mark 7:13) is laid aside and where people start to let God’s new way of living truly work in their lives – transforming, growing spiritually, becoming the people they were created to be – fully alive, fully loving, fully ‘human’, fully living out their true nature as image bearers of God, living by the meaning and spirit of the message of Jesus, and in so doing, changing the way they relate to the world around them so that this “new way of living” truly promotes the emergence of a “new world”. Imagine a world where it is common place, almost normal and taken for granted for people to have faith in an unconditionally loving, omnipresent Papa God, follow the teachings of Jesus regarding loving God and loving others, grow healthily in every way – physically, mentally, and spiritually, discover their gifts, talents and abilities and earn their living and live their life doing the things which make them come alive, where violence is seen as a primitive horror from the past, where all culture and styles of life are valued, (not a one-size-fits-all culture), and where God is honored, Jesus is followed, and people are loved and blessed in multiple ways, where businesses and politics and economics are run honestly and ethically, where ecology is valued, where the Sermon on the Mount is lived out. None of this is done by force, or by law, or certainly not by violence and war – its not one religion or one culture forcing itself on others and seeking to stamp all others out; rather, it is one presence (God) gradually changing lives and working in and through ALL cultures and people. However, I do also admit quite freely that God is the God of all creation. That he is at work in all the world, speaking to people from all backgrounds, beliefs, cultures and understandings and pushing all things towards a desired goal. There are many people and groups outside of the Christian church who do have some very accurate insights into the changing seasons and the coming Aquarian Age, and providing we stay grounded in a proper interpretive framework, we can and should listen to what people are “seeing” and use those insights as bridges to teach or introduce a deeper, more fuller, more Christ-centered understanding of these things. It seems to me that many Biblical prophecies point to what the condition of the world be be (still within time and space, not in some ‘eternal state’) as the kingdom of God continues to advance and expand – it indicates a time of universal fullness of the Spirit, peace, health, longevity, harmony and happiness:”

If our eyes were opened, to quote Elizabeth Barrat Browing – “Earth’s crammed with heaven, And every common bush afire with God; But only he who sees, takes off his shoes – The rest sit round it and pluck blackberries” – we would see that “ever bush is ablaze ” – Moses eyes were opened. He saw the blazing glory of that other world shining and burning in a non destructive way through the bush. But one day it will be as if heaven and earth merge into one – the whole universe suddenly evolves into an upgrade, as it is visible, tangibly, eternally infused with the life-force of God’s very self – the whole of creation is divinized, it becomes timeless, no longer subject to decay, because that is only a phenomena of time. And what about us? We have had this wonderful “Age-enduring life” in our “spiritual bodies” expressing our individual separateness still, to a certain extent. But now, we all become fully divinized as well. I don’t image that we will “lose ourselves” in God, but I think we will be fully God-realized, for want of a better term. I suppose there is a better term in theology, it called Theosis – the experience of being divinized by being so full in union with God, that the two are one – not just it principle, but in experience. That is when “the end shall come”.

Remember “the beginning, God”? Well, that was the start of time and the Ages. Now we are at “the end” and what will happen is that “God shall be All in All”. I just think that is absolutely mind boggling and fantastic. It’s like the ultimate happy ending. All is well that “ends” well – and all shall be well, because it will end well. Everything and everyone in all of creation will be alive and fully animated with the very presence of an unconditionally loving, joyfully peaceful, blissful Father God. For “then comes the End, when God shall be All, and in All”.


And so, in the Bible we see a plan – that All things originate in the One Eternal Original Source – God himself. And All things shall return to that Source, when God shall be All in All. And in between “Eternity Past” and “Eternity to Come” we see the creation of mater & time (and the Ages), God gradually and progressive working out his “Plan of the Ages”, God’s ever-advancing Kingdom growing and spreading until it culminates in the return of Jesus and the final judgment (final, because there is no more judgment, thereafter), or for those of us who die before that “End”, we immediately face out final judgment (Hebrews 9:27) bringing “Age-enduring life or Age-enduring punishment”, however that final “End” ushers in the Conclusion of the Ages, when time is no more, when the “eternal now” infuses and is experienced by all creation, and “then God shall be All in All”.”

The end.

 

 

Preterism and Reality

J. N. D. Kelly, who was Principal of St. Edmund Hall at Oxford and was an authority on the theology and thoughts of the Church fathers, wrote the following.

“Four chief moments dominate the eschatological expectation of early Christian theology – the return of Christ, known as the Parousia, the resurrection, the judgment, and the catastrophic ending of the present world-order.”

Here they are again…..

1.The return of Christ, known as the Parousia

2. The resurrection

3. The judgment

4. The catastrophic ending of the present world-order

If the destruction of the temple in 70AD was so important (Jonathan Welton teaches that it is equivalent to the virgin birth, the cross, and the resurrection) then why was it not a part of the eschatological expectation/fulfillment of the Church fathers? Why didn’t they write about it or explain its significance?

This great major event (again up there with the cross, the virgin birth and the resurrection) is never explained or talked about in New Testament letters or by Polycarp, or Iranaeus, or Justin Martyr or Cyprian or Hyppolytus or Barnabus or Clement or Ignatius or Papias or Tertullian and on and on.

(phew thank you Lord that they remembered to write about redemption, the cross, the antichrist and the 1,000 year reign, upon the earth, of Jesus Christ)

You want to know about redemption? Read just about any letter or gospel in the New Testament or Iranaeus or Polycarp or Tertullian or….

You want to understand the cross? Read just about any letter or gospel in the New Testament or Clement or Justin Martyr or….

The resurrection? You get the point.

You want to read or study about the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 AD and how essential it is to the Christian faith or even eschatology?

Oh…..well you can follow modern day teachers who take obscure passages, then allegorize where they need to, and then add man-centered philosophy; or you can join their Supernatural Online Bible Schools…But don’t bother going to the Word of God because you won’t find what you are looking for. Don’t investigate the early church either because they never mentioned it.

In fact….there is no celebration of 70AD and the erasure of the Old Covenant (finally) by anyone in the early church.  Not one leader of the early church told us how happy they were to be free from the Old Covenant temple leaders and system.  No one expressed their gratitude to Jesus Christ that the priests and the people that remained in Jerusalem were slaughtered and finally removed. No Church father mentioned Jesus Christ returning in the clouds (in judgment) over Jerusalem.  Silence…..

Why ?

Because they were busy writing and teaching about the cross…redemption…judgment…resurrection..the antichrist….the 1,000 year reign of Jesus Christ…the dark days that would come at the final end of the age….!

The Apostle John, who lived for 30 years after the destruction of the Temple in 70 AD, never wrote about its importance or earth shattering relevance. He never spoke of the Old Covenant and the New Covenant co-existing for 40 years.  He never cried out in joy over the death and destruction that took place as though it was some amazing, wonderful, event that Christians had been waiting for.

Did we need to wait 1900 years…

to finally have teachers smart enough to take obscure passages

and mix in a bunch of allegory

and philosophical fluff to see the light?

Come on.

Preterism is a philosophy.

A worldview that removes judgment and tells the church that the world is getting better all the time.

Hip Hip Hooray !

Listening to a teacher of preterism is like going to a football game

and only watching the cheerleaders

and then claiming that it was the greatest game you have ever seen

but you don’t know what the final score was or who won.

OH WAIT.

Sorry.

The Apostle John does have something to say about preterism.

“Little children, keep yourselves from idols. Amen.”

1 John 5:21