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dohzman
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Joined: 2004/10/13
Posts: 2132


 Re: What is the point of prophecy?



What do you think? What is the purpose of prophecy and is it always inevitable?


The purpose of prophesy is for edification and confirmation , however in the case of Agabus who foretold of the famine to come in Judea it would appear he spoke inorder that provision might be made for the believers in Judea.Is it always inevitable? I believe there are some things God has set in place by His sovereign will that cannot be altered but there are somethings He has decreed that we can alter through our influence in prayer and obedience to God, as in the case of Jonah.And even in that I see God as unwilling to destroy that wicked nation, by forcing Jonah to go.Maybe he was a bad example!lol! But you get my main idea. What do you think? Bro. Daryl


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D.Miller

 2005/3/21 1:08Profile









 Re:

Quote:
What is the point of prophecy?



To get the winning lottery numbers?

Krispy

 2005/3/21 11:47









 Re:

Robert said:

"I personally believe the Lord's return is immanent."

According to Revelations, which I don't hold much stock in, there must be a one world currency and all must wear the mark in order to be able to buy or sell. The possibility of this is many many years away, as many places such as Africa just don't have the infrastructure nor even the possibility for this to happen soon.

Don't get me wrong, although I am greatly skeptical of Revelations, (precisedly because there's been so much time wasted on intrepreting it with so few useful results, because it has been nothing but a source of controversy and contention among believers, because much of it seems surreal in tone, because it was added much later than the rest of the books, and because it reveals nothing new about the nature of Jesus) but if someone tells me I must have a mark on my hand or forehead in order to buy and sell, you can bet I'll be out of there and looking for a cave to live in in a second.

This is mainly because such a worldwide currency system would be a source of all powerful information to those controlling it. Freedom would be thrown out the door; gone, and this would certainly be an affront to our Lord; giving up what He gave us for the promise of economic security.

The purpose of prophesy is to engage believers in protecting Christianity and to motivate them to coalesce around the core belief of loving one another as God has loved us, while doing so.

Bubbaguy

 2005/3/21 13:24
philologos
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Joined: 2003/7/18
Posts: 6566
Reading, UK

 Re:

Quote:
To get the winning lottery numbers?

Perhaps not? The real reason I asked this question was to challenge the current position among the majority of evangelicals that we have a sort of coded timetable for the future. If this is the purpose of the New Testament's prophetic stream it is quite different to that in the Old Testament.

The purpose of OT prophecy does seem to fit with the general statement of the Lord"From now on I am telling you before it comes to pass, [u]so that[/u] when it does occur, you may believe that I am He. (Joh 13:19 NASB)In this sense of the prophetic would not be to provide a timetable for the future but so that when the future 'happened' His people would know that it was all in hand. The sense in this verse is not so that you will be warned before hand, but 'in order that' when it happens you will know that I knew. In other words it will confirm who I am, not give you a timetable for the future.

If this is the main purpose of prophecy then Jake is partially right in the amount of wasted energies that have gone into the interpretation of the book of Revelation as a coded timetable.

It would require a complete paradigm shift for the evangelical world and confine all those pre-trib, post-trib, mid-trib, partial rapture, pre-millenniel, post-milleniel, a-millenial books to the church archive. :-?


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Ron Bailey

 2005/3/21 13:40Profile
Rahman
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Joined: 2004/3/24
Posts: 1374


 Re: What is the point of prophecy?




Brother Ron,

This is my short list as to what i think the point of prophecy is ...

#1 - Divine Exhortation: God's instruction towards what needs to be built up ...
#2 - Divine Condemnation: God's instruction towards what needs to be torn down ...
#3 - Divine Warning: REPENT or else God will reveal His displeasure ...
#4 - Divine Foresight: Signs for the faithful to look for in order to escape the consequences of ignoring the prior three ...


i can kinda see how most of Israel missed Christ in His first coming, they were primarily looking for a conquering King that would slam dunk the Romans, but i think God has been much clearer to we believer's about His secong coming ... And the thing about the Revelation that gets me is that argurably the most graphic book regarding end time prophecy is the only book that comes with it's own special blessing for those that read (familiarize) themselves with it ... i've often wondered why that was, and have wondered if maybe the reason is that God, thru the Revelation, wanted to keep all subsequent believer's ever vigilant, on our toes, with hand cupped to our spiritual ears, listening, looking for the signs of His second coming ...

True such intensity may have driven some to distraction but just because man might get prophecy twisted and miss it, or misconstrue it, doesn't (to me) diminish the importance of said prophecy ... What that says to me is that man has his priorities twisted in that the redemption (reward) of Biblical prophecy is not in figuring out when or how it will happen, but in living every day as if Biblical prophecy will come to pass in the very next second ... i think losing this type urgency is what allows complacency then apostacy to set into the preacher and believer alike ... A little leaven (laxity), and the next thing you got is Laodicea ... i know in my own life, and Christian walk, what has seperated me, and is seperating me even moreso to date from the great majority of my Christian peers is that i see fulfilment of Bible prophecy everyday, every where i look, and every where i turn ... Therefore a lotta saved folk think i'm certfiable, and i'm an over zealous religious nut to most heathen ... They're all intitled to their opinion, but i know that God the Father and Son don't see me that way, and Holy Spirit definitely doesn't because He knows (finally, thank You Jesus!) that He's got my undivided attention, and so loves to commune with me, and i Him, and really that's all i need ... So even if Christ doesn't return in my lifetime, i know that my living my life in this sense of urgency is in the long run beneficial to myself (keeps me clear with God), those about me (i'm concerened that they hear the Gospel before it's to late), but most importantly to Him (because He finds me a willing open vessel to His use now) ... To me that's become a win - win situation!

Bottom line is we may argue over pre, mid and post trib, but one thing we all should agree on, and that is that one day we'll hear trumpets, Jesus will crack the sky, and in an instant we'll become the greater fulfilment of what we so sillily (if that's a word) argue about and question today ... Bible prophecy ...

 2005/3/21 13:51Profile
philologos
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Joined: 2003/7/18
Posts: 6566
Reading, UK

 Re:

Quote:
I would only add that I believe there are certain warnings in Revelation that we need to greatly take heed to. Especially the one about receiving a mark in the right hand or forehead.


I intended to ask this ages ago but forgot. The book of Revelation (btw folks it is [b]Revelation[/b] not [b]Revelation[u]s[/u][/b]) is full of symbols beasts with multiple heads, lambs on throne, dragons pulling a third of the stars down, the numbers 144000, 7, 1000 all seem to be symbolic to me. Here's my question... are you expecting a visible mark on the forehead or hand?

Isn't it more likely that this is a link with And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up. And [u]thou shalt bind them for a sign upon thine hand, and they shall be as frontlets between thine eyes[/u]. (Deu 6:6-8 KJV) The Jews interpreted this literally and wore their phylacteries, but surely the sense was that their lives, in thought and deed, were to be subject to the will of God? In like manner is it not likely that the 'mark' of the beast is similarly describing those whose whole lives, in thought and deed, are subject to his will?

If this is so, the 'mark of the beast' is not something which is coming but something which has been here from the beginning?


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Ron Bailey

 2005/3/21 13:51Profile
philologos
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 Re:

Quote:
i've often wondered why that was, and have wondered if maybe the reason is that God, thru the Revelation, wanted to keep all subsequent believer's ever vigilant, on our toes, with hand cupped to our spiritual ears, listening, looking for the signs of His second coming ...


I was with you until the 'looking for the signs' bit. This is really the purpose of my question. When I say 'prophecy' in this provocative title I had in mind predictive prophecy of the Daniel, Zechariah, Revelation kind which is usually called apocalyptic. I know that there are many forms of prophecy and the predictive is only a proportion.

My main anxiety about the way most evangelicals use the Revelation is just this 'looking for the signs'. The experts in this were the Plymouth Brethren and particularly people like C I Scofield. Spurgeon, who was a contemporary of these men once said "Ye men of Plymouth, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven."

Spurgeon had a very keen sense of humour!


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Ron Bailey

 2005/3/21 14:02Profile
dohzman
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Joined: 2004/10/13
Posts: 2132


 Re:

I agree with you about the way we all seemingly look for a sign. I believe the signs will be there but the events of the day will be so fast paced with so much happening all at once , the signs will be missed. The term used for the disciples "gazing" , I believe was theatre, so it was a long drawn out gaze or observation.It would seem to me that in our humanity we are fascinated with even the thought of signs in the heavens and so are the unbelieving.If one wants to get a good following all he has to do is specilize in this area.And so I still say much of te signs preaching is out of balance and scratches itching ears.You're initial observation about a proof of Jesus being who he said he was is , I believe sound doctrine,or healthy doctrine.


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D.Miller

 2005/3/21 14:20Profile
Rahman
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Joined: 2004/3/24
Posts: 1374


 Re: What is the point of prophecy?


Bro Ron you wrote;
"I was with you until the 'looking for the signs' bit".


HALLELEUJAH! ... 1'm praising God for the remainder that your were with me on! ... '0)


You further wrote;
"My main anxiety about the way most evangelicals use the Revelation is just this 'looking for the signs".


That i'd say is probably just human nature, even child like wonderment, as with Jesus disciples in ...


Matt.24
[1] And Jesus went out, and departed from the temple: and his disciples came to him for to shew him the buildings of the temple.
[2] And Jesus said unto them, See ye not all these things? verily I say unto you, There shall not be left here one stone upon another, that shall not be thrown down.
[3] And as he sat upon the mount of Olives, the disciples came unto him privately, saying, Tell us, when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world?

i have to confess that i'd be one of those who caused you "anxiety" in this regard because even tho i see/get more from the Revelation than just signs, if id'a been counted amongst Christ disciples in the afore line of questioning, Jesus would have had to personally sit me down ...


And then there's this scripture that (i think) tells me that if He took the time to write the signs down, i should at least take the time to be on the look out for them ...


Matt.16
[1] The Pharisees also with the Sadducees came, and tempting desired him that he would shew them a sign from heaven.
[2] He answered and said unto them, When it is evening, ye say, It will be fair weather: for the sky is red.
[3] And in the morning, It will be foul weather to day: for the sky is red and lowring. O ye hypocrites, ye can discern the face of the sky; but can ye not discern the signs of the times?

But as i stated previously ... My main job as a Christian is to live my life like He's coming in the next second ... signs or not ...

PS - i've listened to a few of your lectures and noticed in one of them that you used the same term in one of them that you used here "most evangelicals" ... This is not a loades question, i'm just curious, do you concider yourself an "evangelical", and if not then what?

 2005/3/21 14:31Profile
philologos
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Joined: 2003/7/18
Posts: 6566
Reading, UK

 Re:

Quote:
And then there's this scripture that (i think) tells me that if He took the time to write the signs down, i should at least take the time to be on the look out for them ..


But that is my point. Signs are not always pointers to the future.

Quote:
PS - i've listened to a few of your lectures and noticed in one of them that you used the same term in one of them that you used here "most evangelicals" ... This is not a loades question, i'm just curious, do you concider yourself an "evangelical", and if not then what?


Yes, I regard myself as an evangelical. I just find difficulty in regarding some evangelicals as evangelicals! :-o Perhaps I should begin to use the phrase 'most contemporary evangelicals'. In much of my thinking I would be much more closely aligned to the 'classical evangelicals' of earlier years. 'Evangelical' used to mean 'bible-based', now it is a sub-culture with a whole language and practice that is mostly tradition and much less 'bible-based'. This is why I called my own site 'the bible base'.


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Ron Bailey

 2005/3/21 14:45Profile





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