Copyright 1994 - 2017 Bill's Bible Basics
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July 27, 2016
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July 27, 2016
My Forthright Writing Style, Modern Age Of Deception, Truth Of God's Word Buried Under Theological Rubble, My Personal Deception, Evil Men And Seducers, Tools Of My Investigation, Taught By Holy Spirit Of Truth, Things Hard To Be Uttered And Strong Meat, Your Current Beliefs Will Be Challenged, A Confirmation For Spirit-Led Bible Students, Ongoing Research, Magnitude Of The Issue, Very Important Decision, Jesus And The Apostles vs. Modern Preachers Authors And Movie Makers, Test The Spirits And Study The Scriptures, Endtime Prophecy And Prevailing Theological Perspective, "Jesus Is Coming At Any Moment" Mentality, Modern False Prophets And Erroneous Predictions, Scriptural Admonitions, My Teenage Deception, My Spiritual Awakening, If You Earnestly Desire The Truth, Exegesis And Theological Perspectives, The Preterist Point Of View, Historicist Viewpoint, The Futurist Perspective, Influence And Pervasiveness Of The Futurist Point Of View
As some of my longtime readers will already know, it has never been my practice to shy away from discussing some of the more difficult issues regarding our faith which certain other preachers and pastors may be afraid to talk about, due to their bondage to political correctness and other concerns. I tend to be forthright, honest, and to the point in the way that I craft my articles and series. Over the past twenty-two years since my online writing ministry began, I have tackled some rather meaty, controversial topics. For example, I have exposed the compromises of modern organized religion, which I refer to as "churchianity". I have written about and exposed the false Jews, the Zionists and the lies of Judaism. I have also exposed the sins and rebellion of the militant gay and lesbian rights movement. I have exposed the excessive greed of both Big Business and commercialized Christianity. I have exposed the hypocrisy and warmongering nature of the American government. I have dealt with the vices of smoking, cussing, drug addiction, alcoholism and pornography. I have exposed the wickedness of the evil, murderous practice of abortion.
As I point out in a number of other articles, if there is one word which appropriately describes our current times, it is "deception". No intelligent, observant person can deny that deception in fact abounds, and is everywhere we look. We are constantly being deceived by our governments. We are deceived by the news media. We are deceived by organized religion. We are deceived by Big Business. We are deceived by friends and acquaintances. We are deceived by boyfriends and girlfriends. We even deceive each other within our own families if doing so suits our purposes. In our blind hypocrisy, we all expect honesty from those people who touch our lives, but can we truly say that we are reciprocating in the very same manner?
Many people become deceived by a particular thought or belief and never even realize it; at least not immediately. We can spend a large portion of our lives believing in a certain lie or deception, until one day a light suddenly comes on in our head. It is at this point that we experience our so-called "ah-hah!" moment, and we find ourselves asking ourselves how in the world we could have ever possibly believed in such a thing to begin with. While it is indeed true that there are times in our lives when we intentionally and knowingly allow ourselves to become deceived, insofar as this current series is concerned, it deals with issues which relate to the first kind of deception; that is, unintentional deception.
As I have explained to my readers previously, it is my view that the truth of God's Word has been buried under piles and piles of misguided theological rubble, so that today, many Christians have become seriously deceived. Speaking quite candidly, even I was deceived regarding the proper meaning of certain Biblical passages for about forty-two years of my life. This deception on my part resulted from the fact that during my late teenage years, I was exposed to a theological perspective which blinded me to certain Scriptural truths for literally decades to come.
No doubt like many of you who are reading this series, I waited and waited for the Lord to give me understanding as I grew older and older; and yet I simply could not properly assemble the different pieces of God's "Prophetic Puzzle" in the correct order, no matter how hard I endeavored to do so. Quite frankly, I was baffled by the meaning of a number of verses, and there were many blank spots in my understanding; particularly when it came to the subject of Bible prophecy. Of course, I thought that I understood certain parts of it, but the truth of the matter is that I now believe that it has only been during the past few years or so that God has really begun to open my eyes. As a result, I have begun to realize how misguided I have actually been; particularly in the area of Bible prophecy.
Based on my personal recollection, it was sometime in early 2012 -- and perhaps even in 2011 -- that I believe that the Lord began to gradually reveal to me through the Scriptures, that I have been deceived by certain doctrinal positions for a great many years now. In fact, it is plainly evident to me that I have been deceived by them for the bulk of my adult life over the past forty plus years. Furthermore, not only have I personally been deceived by said beliefs, but to my own shame, because I have taught these very same beliefs by way of my articles, I have also helped to perpetuate these misguided doctrines, and quite possibly deceived others. At the very least, I have helped to affirm other Christians' misguided beliefs. If there is one thing that I can tell you, it is that I never expected that one day the following Bible verse might be applicable to my own life as well:
"But evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving,and being deceived."
2 Timothy 3:13, KJV
Yes. I know. That is a very powerful verse to apply to my own life. Perhaps after you have finished reading what I have to say in this series, you may possibly feel that the verse really does not apply to me. We shall see.
Before I continue, let me state for the record that it has never been my intention to purposely deceive anyone. Similar to many other Christian writers and preachers, I have simply taught for many years what I personally believed to be true, and an accurate understanding of certain Scriptures which concern the issue of prophecy. Furthermore, as you will now learn, the reason why I was so convinced of these beliefs, and taught these doctrines, is because I was deceived by others, who in turn were deceived by other Bible teachers who even preceded them. You need to understand that the doctrine I am about to expose has been in existence for a very long time, and has been dominant for many decades now.
Whatever the case may be, allow me to inform you that what I state in this current series is a result of my own personal studies into God's Word. Besides using the KJV Bible as my primary tool of investigation, in this series -- as well as in a number of yet-to-be-published articles and series which will delve into related historical and prophetic topics -- I have also referred to other extra-Biblical sources, in order to confirm certain facts as they pertain to ancient history, as well as to clarify my own understanding regarding what is being described and prophesied in the Scriptures. Some of these resources include the Brown, Driver, Briggs, Gesenius Hebrew Aramaic English Lexicon, the Thayer's Greek English Lexicon, the writings of certain ancient Jewish and Roman historians such as Flavius Josephus, Tacitus and Suetonius, and various other online resources.
The point I wish to emphasize here is that what I am about to share with you is not the result of doctrines that I have learned from other theologians, preachers or Bible teachers. Not only that, but I purposely avoided reading the writings and opinions of such individuals, so that the Lord could reveal the truth to me directly from His Word, and enhance my personal understanding of the same, by way of the leading of the Holy Spirit. Is this not in fact what the Scriptures inform us is the purpose of the Holy Spirit? Please consider the following verses which speak about the Spirit of Truth, and how it will lead and teach us:
"And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever; Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you . . . But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you."
John 14:16-17, 26, KJV
"But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me:"
John 15:26, KJV
"Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come."
John 16:13, KJV
"But I certify you, brethren, that the gospel which was preached of me is not after man. For I neither received it of man, neither was I taught it, but by the revelation of Jesus Christ."
Galatians 1:11-12, KJV
"That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give unto you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of him: The eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that ye may know what is the hope of his calling, and what the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints,"
Ephesians 1:17-18, KJV
"If ye have heard of the dispensation of the grace of God which is given me to you-ward: How that by revelation he made known unto me the mystery; (as I wrote afore in few words, Whereby, when ye read, ye may understand my knowledge in the mystery of Christ) Which in other ages was not made known unto the sons of men, as it is now revealed unto his holy apostles and prophets by the Spirit; That the Gentiles should be fellowheirs, and of the same body, and partakers of his promise in Christ by the gospel: Whereof I was made a minister, according to the gift of the grace of God given unto me by the effectual working of his power."
Ephesians 3:2-7, KJV
"We are of God: he that knoweth God heareth us; he that is not of God heareth not us. Hereby know we the spirit of truth, and the spirit of error."
1 John 4:6, KJV
"This is he that came by water and blood, even Jesus Christ; not by water only, but by water and blood. And it is the Spirit that beareth witness, because the Spirit is truth."
1 John 5:6, KJV
"But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him. God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth."
John 4:23-24, KJV
As you may have already begun to sense, depending on your own doctrinal perspective and personal understanding of the Scriptures, the series you are about to read may very well be the most radical, challenging thing you have ever read from me. Be advised that it may in fact shake your faith to its very foundation. Similar to myself, it may cause you to question and doubt some beliefs which you have embraced for years; quite possibly even for decades. Make no mistake. It may affect you in a very profound way. If there is one thing which I can say about this series, it is that it obviously falls under the category "things . . . hard to be uttered" and "strong meat", as we see by the following verses:
"Of whom we have many things to say, and hard to be uttered, seeing ye are dull of hearing. For when for the time ye ought to be teachers, ye have need that one teach you again which be the first principles of the oracles of God; and are become such as have need of milk, and not of strong meat. For every one that useth milk is unskilful in the word of righteousness: for he is a babe. But strong meat belongeth to them that are of full age, even those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil."
Hebrews 5:11-14, KJV
By the time that you have completed reading this series, you will either love me all the more for being willing to tell you the truth without reservation -- at least what I am now convinced is the Biblical truth -- or else you will accuse me of being a liar and a false prophet. That is just how strong this material is. I am not boasting or exaggerating when I say this. In fact, I fully expect to lose some of my current online friends as a result of publishing this series, because it is not the milk of God's Word. This series addresses one of the toughest, chewiest, most difficult and widely-debated issues that is found in the Bible. As I explained a moment ago, what I am about to share here may very well challenge some of your current beliefs.
At the same time, I also believe that this series will come as a great blessing, a relief, and a confirmation to some of my observant Christian friends who have likewise been seeing the same things in the Scriptures which I have seen. In fact, for quite some time now, a few of you have been asking me a number of questions in private chat, as well as via email, regarding certain Scriptures which have greatly troubled you. Like myself, you have begun to suspect that they do not mean what modern Bible teachers and preachers have told us they mean. While I have purposely not provided you with direct answers, and for many months now have been asking you to have patience while I complete my own initial studies, the time has finally arrived for me to share with you what I have learned thus far over the past few years.
However, please understand ahead of time that my personal Biblical research is ongoing, and that there are still many issues which I need to study and resolve for myself, based on the new theological perspective I have acquired in recent years. There still remain quite a few gaps in my personal understanding regarding Bible prophecy. As a result, please do not expect this series to answer all of your questions, because it won't. This subject is just so huge, and it has so many prophetic ramifications. In fact, this series will no doubt leave you with a lot of new questions, just as this information has left me with a lot of new questions as well, which I hope to address in future articles and series, as I come to a greater knowledge of the truth.
For now, what I can tell you is the following. By the time you have finished reading this series, you are going to be faced with a very important decision. You are going to have to believe that either Jesus and the Apostles of the First Century spoke the truth regarding the timing of the Lord's triumphant Return, and that we have simply misunderstood what they taught and wrote; or else modern preachers, Bible teachers, Christian authors and movie makers are telling us the truth regarding Christ's Advent. Of course, if we accept that the latter group is telling us the truth, then we are indirectly saying that Jesus and the Apostles were misguided and got it wrong. The only other alternative is to recognize that these modern conveyors of truth are in fact twisting the true meaning of the Scriptures, promoting the doctrines of men, and in some cases earning a profit from it as well. Of course, this also forces us to admit that some of us have been deceived by them too.
If you are a little confused by the last paragraph, please don't worry. I assure you that everything will become clear to you by the time you have completed reading this series. At any rate, before you read another paragraph, I ask you to please stop right now and pray. Ask the Lord to give you an open mind and heart, and eyes that can see, so that you will be able to understand what I am about to share with you in this series. Ask the Lord right now to give you the Gift of Spiritual Discernment, so that you can properly ascertain whether or not I am telling you the truth, based on what the Scriptures actually say and teach us regarding the Return of Jesus Christ. As we read in the verses below, we all need to test the spirits, and to study the Scriptures, in order to discern whether or not someone is speaking Biblical truth:
"Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth."
2 Timothy 2:15, KJV
"And the brethren immediately sent away Paul and Silas by night unto Berea: who coming thither went into the synagogue of the Jews. These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so."
Acts 17:10-11, KJV
"Prove all things; hold fast that which is good."
1 Thessalonians 5:21, KJV
"Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world."
1 John 4:1, KJV
Assuming that you have prayed as I requested, let us delve into the meat of the matter. As I began to explain earlier, for quite a number of decades now, a certain theological perspective regarding what modern Christians refer to as Endtime prophecy has prevailed. There are certain preachers, Bible teachers, Christian authors and movie makers who have aggressively promoted and defended this particular position. Sadly, anyone who has dared to question or outright oppose the prevailing theological view has been criticized, accused of being a deceived and misguided false prophet, condemned, and branded as a heretic by the supporters of this doctrine. In fact, some of these people can be so aggressive, that in some online comments, I have even seen them use the phrase "doctrine of devils" to describe any idea which opposes this prevailing theological perspective.
Tragically, it is precisely because this particular prophetic perspective has been so heavily foisted upon modern Believers in recent decades, that the "Jesus-is-coming-at-any-moment" mentality now prevails. Furthermore, it is due to this very same reason that certain Christian leaders were seriously embarrassed -- and their flocks left feeling rather confused -- when Jesus did not return in the year 2000 as they claimed that He would do. Needless-to-say, this very same erroneous interpretation of the Scriptures continues to persist to this present day, and many Christians continue to be led astray by the misguided men and women who promote it, and who continue to make their false predictions regarding Christ's Return.
If one takes the time to visit the popular social networks, or many of the thousands of Christian websites which are now online, he will quickly discover how many foolish things are being said, claimed, taught and propagated by these "wannabe prophets" which have no support in the Scriptures whatsoever. It is my view that their false teachings result from a forced interpretation of the Scriptures, so that they fit what these particular Bible teachers want to believe, and what they want us to believe as well. However, concerning these modern false prophets, Jesus, Moses and the Prophet Ezekiel offer us some sound advice when they state the following:
"But the prophet, which shall presume to speak a word in my name, which I have not commanded him to speak, or that shall speak in the name of other gods, even that prophet shall die. And if thou say in thine heart, How shall we know the word which the LORD hath not spoken? When a prophet speaketh in the name of the LORD, if the thing follow not, nor come to pass, that is the thing which the LORD hath not spoken, but the prophet hath spoken it presumptuously: thou shalt not be afraid of him."
Deuteronomy 18:20-22, KJV
"And when this cometh to pass, (lo, it will come,) then shall they know that a prophet hath been among them."
Ezekiel 33:33, KJV
"Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles? Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit. A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit. Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire. Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them."
Matthew 7:15-20, KJV
Sadly, as I briefly mentioned earlier, over forty years ago, when I was a young, teenage Christian who was very desirous to know and understand Scriptural truth, and who earnestly wanted to serve the Lord, I too became deceived by this same theological point of view. Even back then, it had already become quite dominant, and was being promoted by some of the well-known preachers of the time from the U.S. East Coast to the U.S. West Coast. Like many babes in Christ, not being grounded yet in God's Word, and not knowing the importance of verifying everything with the Scriptures, I too readily accepted as Biblical fact whatever I heard, or happened to read. Thus, for the next forty years or so, I preached and taught pretty much the exact same Endtime message as all of the other preachers when it came to the important topic of Jesus Christ's triumphant Return.
However, as I have already begun to explain, I am becoming convinced that after such a long time of remaining in deep prophetic confusion, I may finally be on the right track, and I am now beginning to understand Jesus and the Apostles' teachings regarding Christ's Return in a new and different light.
As it should be clear to you by now, the purpose of this current series is to set the record straight; not by leaning on the erroneous doctrines and eschatological traditions of men, but rather by taking you straight to the Scriptures, and letting them speak for themselves, as it should be. If you earnestly desire to know the truth; if your spiritual eyes and ears are open to the truth; and if you are willing to forsake any misguided ideas and beliefs which may hold you back from accepting the Scriptural truth, then it is my hope that you will begin to see the same things which I have begun to see, by the time you have completed this series. All I am going to do is present you with the Scriptures, and explain to you how I now understand them. It will then be up to you to arrive at your own conclusions, with the guidance of the Holy Spirit.
In previous paragraphs, I have repeatedly used the phrase "theological perspective". Some of you who are young in our Christian faith may be wondering what I mean by this. I do not want to make this series overly complicated, being as the subject we are discussing will already be very difficult and challenging for some people as it is; so I will endeavor to make the following few paragraphs as short and as precise as possible.
Over the centuries, interpretation of the Holy Scriptures -- or "exegesis" -- has resulted in basically three different points of view, or perspectives. Being as we are discussing theology -- or religious beliefs -- these three points of view are thus three theological perspectives. Of course, just by saying this, I am simplifying things, because even within these three primary theological perspectives, there likewise exist different levels, flavors, tangents -- or whatever you wish to call them -- where two people who embrace the same theological perspective, may not necessarily hold exactly to the same beliefs. There are now so many different labels and doctrinal subdivisions, that it can be downright confusing.
The first theological perspective is the Preterist point of view. This perspective became popular during the Nineteenth Century. According to the Preterist point of view, the Book of Revelation represents a message of hope and comfort that was primarily directed to the Christians who were living during the First Century. Thus, the goal of the Book is to give First Century Believers an expectation of deliverance from the oppression and persecution of the Roman government. This particular viewpoint is also known as the Contemporary Historical view. As such, it regards the various visions of the Book of the Revelation as primarily -- and perhaps even exclusively -- reflecting the events and people of the First Century.
However, as I mentioned a moment ago, within each of these theological perspectives, there exist variations in belief. Thus, it should be noted that there are different degrees of Preterists. For example, while some Preterists believe that all of the events which are described in Revelation center around the destruction of Jerusalem and the Temple compound in 70 AD, and that all of the Book's prophecies have already been fulfilled, other Preterists hold to the view that the final chapters of the Book remain as of yet unfulfilled, and that they prophesy of a future Second Coming of Jesus Christ. In this context, some Preterists believe that the first half of the Book of Revelation describes the fall of Jerusalem; the second half of the Book prophesies the fall of the Roman Empire; and the final chapters describe the glorious Second Coming of Jesus Christ. Are you beginning to see how quickly Biblical exegesis can become very complicated?
The second theological perspective is the Historicist point of view. The Historicist method of interpretation views the Book of Revelation as a symbolic prophecy which encompasses the entirety of Church history, and which forms a picture of the events and movements which have shaped the conflict and progress of the Christian Church. Due to its very nature, much conjecture is associated with this particular point of view as history progresses. Within it we find references to barbarian invasions, the Reformation, the French Revolution, World Wars I and II, the European Common Market, etc. These historical interpretations obviously have to be revised periodically when the popular interpretations prove to be unreliable. The Historicist view was professed by Reformers such as John Wycliffe, John Knox, William Tyndale, Martin Luther, John Calvin, and Matthew Henry, as well as by more recent notable Christians such as Charles Spurgeon.
The third theological perspective we are going to discuss is the Futurist point of view. This perspective was developed during the 17th Century. Futurists believe that from chapter four onward, all of the prophecies which we find in the Book of Revelation describe events which are still in the future from our current perspective. Furthermore, according to many Futurists, many -- if not all -- of these events will occur during a short seven-year period, which they are convinced signifies the Great Tribulation. However, some people believe that only the final three and half years of this seven-year period will constitute the Great Tribulation. Furthermore, Futurists equate this seven-year period with the seventieth week of the Seventy Weeks prophecy of the Prophet Daniel. Whatever the case may be, the Futurist position holds that all of these events will occur prior to the future Return of Jesus Christ.
The Futurist perspective is a very powerful, influential and pervasive force; so much so, that it has been embraced by the majority of the currently popular evangelists, Christian book authors, Bible teachers, and even by Christian movie makers. Such is the strength of this viewpoint, that it has in fact dominated the Christian media. If you've seen movies such as the "Left Behind" series, the "Apocalypse" series, the "Omen" series, the "Omega Code" movies, "Rosemary's Baby", and other movies which center around the birth and reign of the Beast, or the Antichrist, you have been directly exposed to, as well as indoctrinated by, the Futurist theological perspective.
This is in fact the perspective which influenced my Christian beliefs forty-five years ago when I was a teenager, and kept me solidly under its thumb until only a few years ago. It has so dominated modern Christianity, that many people, both Christian and non-Christian alike, are not even aware of the fact that there are alternative points of view. As I stated earlier, sadly, I have observed some online Futurists who are so aggressive regarding their doctrinal views, that they will immediately condemn anyone who embraces an opposing point of view, even classifying such beliefs as "doctrines of devils".
Please go to part two for the continuation of this series.
⇒ Go To The Next Part . . .