By Jay Rogers
Published April 27, 2008
Calvin may have been wrong in his view of the Antichrist and the Man of Sin having a future or historical (eschatological) fulfillment. Where I think Calvin definitely got it right was his Commentary On Daniel in which he is solidly preterist.
To understand New Testament passages such as Matthew 24 and Revelation 13, we have to understand correctly what Daniel is prophesying. We have to understand the fulfillment and the purpose of Daniel in history.
As I wrote earlier, Daniel is not a prophecy given to Protestants to describe the time of the Reformation. It is not a prophecy given to Christians today that describes events in our future. It is a prophecy given to the Jews to prove the time of the coming Messiah. The context and purpose of the passage point to a first century fulfillment. Key timing elements of the prophecy as well as the application of specific descriptions of the “little horn” describe Nero Caesar.
If one says that the two horns of the beast are the papacy and Islam, then one also has to show how that is specifically applicable to the context and purpose of Daniel’s prophecy.
I do not believe that the Bible gives us a road map of future world events. The predictive nature of prophecy points either to important events in the redemption of the nation of Israel (so that the righteous would know what to do in those times) — or prophecy points to the first or second advent of Christ. We cannot know where we are exactly in the time before the second coming. Jesus was silent about that.
Futurism is the study of the end-times — an area of study forbidden by Jesus. The times are not for us to know, but the Father only (Matthew 24:36).
I rejected futurism once I saw that the cryptic approach was about as accurate and edifying as interpreting the prophecies of Nostradamus. Then I was torn between the historicist, idealist and futurist interpretation of the book of Revelation. However, I soon realized that Daniel, Matthew 24, Revelation (and other supposed “eschatological” passages) must interpret each other. The only way to interpret the prophecies of Daniel (which are about the same events as certain prophecies in Revelation and Matthew 24) is from a preterist approach.
I am a partial preterist, but I am also flexible in general applications. I would say that these “beast” prophecies may be applied to any ruler who is “anti-Christ.” While I am not looking for one future antichrist — and I do not believe that the papal system of the Middle Ages or Islam in general is the antichrist — I would not hesitate to make an application by saying the same spirit that ruled Nero also ruled these diabolical powers.
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Revival, Resistance, Reformation, Revolution
An Introduction to the Doctrines of Interposition and Nullification
In 1776, a short time after the Declaration of Independence was adopted, Thomas Jefferson, John Adams and Benjamin Franklin were assigned to design an official seal for the United States of America. Their proposed motto was Rebellion to Tyrants is Obedience to God. America owes its existence to centuries of Christian political philosophy. Our nation provided a model for liberty copied by nations the world over.
By the 21st century, we need a “Puritan Storm” to sweep away the Hegelian notion that the state is “God walking on earth.” We need revival and reformation in full force to vanquish the problems that plague us as a nation — from government controlled healthcare — to abortion on demand — to same sex “marriage.” This booklet gives a primer on our founders’ Christian idea of government and examines how the doctrine of nullification was woven into the Constitution as a safeguard against federal tyranny. It concludes with the history and theology of civil resistance. A Second American Revolution is coming with the Word of God growing mightily and prevailing! (Acts 19:20).
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Just what is Calvinism?
Does this teaching make man a deterministic robot and God the author of sin? What about free will? If the church accepts Calvinism, won’t evangelism be stifled, perhaps even extinguished? How can we balance God’s sovereignty and man’s responsibility? What are the differences between historic Calvinism and hyper-Calvinism? Why did men like Augustine, Luther, Calvin, Spurgeon, Whitefield, Edwards and a host of renowned Protestant evangelists embrace the teaching of predestination and election and deny free will theology?
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Who is the Real Jesus?
Ever since the dawn of modern rationalism, skeptics have sought to use textual criticism, archeology and historical reconstructions to uncover the “historical Jesus” — a wise teacher who said many wonderful things, but fulfilled no prophecies, performed no miracles and certainly did not rise from the dead in triumph over sin.
Over the past 100 years, however, startling discoveries in biblical archeology and scholarship have all but vanquished the faulty assumptions of these doubting modernists. Regrettably, these discoveries have often been ignored by the skeptics as well as by the popular media. As a result, the liberal view still holds sway in universities and impacts the culture and even much of the church.
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“Give me liberty or give me death!”
Patrick Henry’s famous declaration not only helped launch the War for Independence, it also perfectly summarized the mindset that gave birth to, and sustained, the unprecedented experiment in Christian liberty that was America.
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