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Thursday, 20 July 2017

CHRIST'S RETURN IS NOT IMMINENT ! BY DAVE MACPHERSON

(Pretrib rapturists claim that Christ's return is imminent, that is, capable of occurring at any moment. My wonderful father and theologian Norman MacPherson, in his excellent book "Triumph Through Tribulation," offers proof that the Bible has never taught an any-moment return of Christ. Here are the points brought out and discussed at length by him:)

     1. Great Commission fulfillment implies a long period of time.
     2. Seed growth in Matthew 13 is a time-consuming process.
     3. Paul expected death, not rapture, in II Timothy 4:6-8.
     4. Jesus predicted Peter's martyrdom in John 21:18-19.
     5. Matthew 24 teaches that signs must come first.
     6. Many passages speak of a large interval between Christ's ascension and return: Jewish dispersion into "all nations" (Luke 21); "man travelling into a far country," "after a long time the lord of those servants cometh" (Matthew 25).
     7. Apostasy of last days takes time to develop.
     8. Bridegroom tarried in parable of virgins.
     9. Pastoral epistles teach Church's continuing ministry, which involves time.
   10. Paul says Christ's coming is not imminent (II Thessalonians 2:1-3), for apostasy and Antichrist must come first.
   11. View of seven phases of church history (seven churches of Revelation) involves big lapse of time and imminence difficulties for pre-tribs; could Christ have come before the last phase?
   12. Exhortations to watch and be ready are tied to what pre-trib teachers regard as the second stage (which is necessarily non-imminent) in Matthew 24 and 25, I Corinthians 1:7, Colossians 3:4, I Thessalonians 3:13, II Thessalonians 1:7-10, I Peter 1:13 and 4:13, and I John 2:28.

(How can an "imminent" return of Christ have a greater practical effect on us than the indwelling of the Holy Spirit already has, or should have, on us?  For more on pretrib beliefs and history, Google "Pretrib Rapture Secrecy," "Pretrib Rapture Diehards," "Pretrib Rapture Dishonesty," "Roots of Warlike Christian Zionism," and "Pretrib Rapture Politics.")


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