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quote:
I like it that you are taking a stand! We may be making some progress here. Refreshing! So much nicer (imo) than earlier posts elsewhere where you’d say something to the effect of ‘I don’t say it is and I don’t say it’s not’. [And I’d think: why not, Jacques? It can’t be both.]

Jesus wants us to decide. He brings a sword of division. He vomits out the lukewarm.

Definitely too, I see that you have certainly spent some time in ferreting out the content and all the supporting references that you included in your first two new posts above. (I have to yet read the third post on signs and wonders though). Those all show that you indeed have not dismissed me (though part of me kind of wishes you had, lol. But that’s my lazy ‘flesh’ reacting.)

Okay. So my understanding of your belief (based on your words still on the other thread as well as those above) is:

1 There will be no future political leader forthcoming who will be the Antichrist. (This implies thereby that there is no need therefore to be concerned about such an appearance and anticipating it and/or using such thinking as an indicator of events).

2. Christ can come at any time now therefore. (Though we do not know day nor
hour). As such, the Second Coming could indeed come as early as December as Samson had wondered about – or even sooner I guess.

3. Pope Benedict would agree with the above stated beliefs of yours, based upon the quote you provided as substantiating evidence, in which he stated during an opening mass of a Synod of Bishops that ‘the judgment announced by Jesus referred above all to the destruction of the Jewish temple in 70 A.D’.

4. The ‘one-sided view’ of mine that you wish to shake-up, is essentially a product of my blue-meme mind alone – [‘of what you have created in your head’ is how you put it].
(Only mine? Only blue-memes? Only some blue-memes – the one-sided ones! LOL.)

Let me know if I correctly understand your beliefs. Then perhaps we can proceed a few tads more in our discussion. I see from early posts on this thread that years back when you were fresh from your course on eschatology you didn’t know what to believe. It seems you may have settled in to a belief.


Nice post Pop, let's see where this goes Smiler

First off, though I can understand why you prefer a solid stance to my usual fluidity, I assure you this is as yet an unstable position Wink

I'm afraid that at this stage my opinion is likely to change after each significant conversation or reading...perhaps one day Jesus will give me deeper convictions on this fluid reality...and I would say that already He is doing so on many of the fundamentals...but this is yet a fluid subject for me...so hope you are still up for what may be a shifting conversation Razzer

Right, no.1 - My position as per the orthodox/partial preterist position is that the New Testament (and Daniel's) prophecies concerning the beast or antichrist speak firstly to the early church and the apostate Jews and Roman emperors...though I don't deny that they have a potential contemporary application/implication.

Phil notes that both the Antichrist and Second Coming are realities taught in the CCC. I can fully endorse my own belief in a future second coming of Christ and also reconcile my current beliefs concerning antichrist with those found in the CCC. The Catechism does not stipulate that the final antichrist will be a single person (though this is not denied either) but seems rather to indicate that it will be a pseudo-messianism that offers salvation at the cost of apostasy.

This however does not take away from the preterist applications of the majority of new testament prophecies to the early centuries.

Since we have always been tempted to abandon the truth for the lie and since the antichrist spirit has been alive and well since the time of Christ we can affirm that the same is true today.

I acknowledge the fact that in time these realities could become more openly visible and eventually the children of light and the children of darkness may be evidently known and that only the second coming of Christ will put the final manifestation of the children of darkness to rest.

No. 2 - Yes, given that even now these two kingdoms of light and darkness exist and both call for the allegiance of human beings, Christ could come today and put an end to it - since each individual who chooses darkness is doomed, why should their damnation not be significant enough to warrant the end...though God is patient and may wait until the very last potential human being can receive salvation.

No. 3 - I have no idea what Pope Benedict believes regarding the more detailed descriptions of preterist eschatology, though the Roman Catholic church has affirmed aspects of the position during the whole course of it's existence - evidenced in part through the quote I gave and which I could substantiate with other patristic and later quotes.

No. 4 - Both preterism and futurism have been held as potential eschatologies by the Catholic Church. Both approaches have been used to counter the historicist approach of the reformers in which the pope is believed to be the antichrist. So, no Pop, you are not alone in your more futurist approach...but it certainly isn't the only option out there and neither are it's positions incompatible with all preterist approaches nor necessarily with the CCC though there may be charitable disagreements on all sides.
 
Posts: 715 | Location: South Africa | Registered: 12 August 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Third, and most obvious: the Lord Jesus did not come again back then, destroying the emperor with the breath of His mouth and annihilating him by manifesting His own presence. The Second Coming did not already occur. Christ did not manifest his own presence (2 Thess 2:8) in the time of the Roman persecutions.


Finally No. 3 - And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord Jesus will overthrow with the breath of his mouth and destroy by the splendor of his coming. The coming of the lawless one is according to the working of Satan, with all power, signs, and lying wonders. (2 Thess. 2:8-9)

Different opinions are given as to who the lawless one was (Nero, Titus, Domitian). As Nero the mystery form of his character gave way to a revelation of his lawlessness in Nero's wicked acts. This occurred after the restrainer [Claudius, who maintained religio licita] was "taken out of the way," allowing Nero the public stage upon which he could act out his horrendous lawlessness.

So did Christ destroy Nero with the His coming and the breath of His mouth? The strong preteristic indications in the passage demand a different understanding of the destructive coming of Christ here mentioned. Matthew 24:30 is most relevant here: "Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in heaven, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory." And that verse is specifically applied to the first century (Matt. 24:34), as is Revelation 1:7[34] (cp. Rev. 1:1, 3); Matthew 26:63-65; and Mark 9:1. Christ comes in judgment upon Jerusalem in the events of A.D. 67-70 - And also Christ comes to the Ancient of Days and takes His seat at the right hand of the Father. The reality of the judgement confirms and vindicates the reality of Christ's Messiahship.

In that judgment-coming against Jerusalem there is also judgment for the Man of Lawlessness, Nero. There is hope and comfort in the promised relief from the opposition of the Jews and Nero (2 Thess. 2:15-17). Not only was Jerusalem destroyed within twenty years, but Nero himself died a violent death in the midst of the Jewish War (June 8, A.D. 68). His death, then, would occur in the Day of the Lord in conjunction with the judgment-coming of Christ.

He will be destroyed by the breath of Christ, much like Assyria was destroyed with the coming and breath of the LORD in the Old Testament (Isa. 30:27-31) and like Israel was crushed by Babylon (Mic. 1:3-5).

In fact, by God's providence Nero's death stopped the Jewish War briefly so that Christians trapped in Jerusalem could escape (cp. 1 Thess. 1:10).[35] The Man of Lawlessness/Beast, Nero Caesar, dies in the Day of the Lord with the Great Harlot, Jerusalem (Rev. 19:17-21; cf. Rev. 22:6, 10, 12).

Conclusion
The Man of Lawlessness passage is to be preteristically understood for several reasons:

(1) Obvious parallels with Matthew 24 and Revelation 13 tie it into their era of accomplishment: the late A.D. 60s up to A.D. 70 (Matt. 24:34; Rev. 1:1, 3; 22:6, 10).
(2) The reference to the Temple as still standing (2:4).
(3) The present restraining of the Man of Lawlessness (2:6).
(4) The knowledge of the Thessalonians regarding the restrainer (2:6).
(5) The contemporary operation of the Man of Lawlessness in mystery form during Paul's day (2:7).
(6) The overall relevant correspondence of the features with the contemporary situation in which the Thessalonicans found themselves.

The fulfillment of this dreadful prophecy of Scripture does not haunt our future. Its accomplishment lies in our distant past. It was a relevant warning of events looming in the first century.
 
Posts: 715 | Location: South Africa | Registered: 12 August 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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But just so that it is clear that even within preterism there is much to be discussed I give another possible identity for the man of sin/lawlessness being Titus.

I've borrowed heavily from official preterist sites in giving the information I've shared on this thread and so rather than copy and paste even more I'll just give this link to the Titus article.
 
Posts: 715 | Location: South Africa | Registered: 12 August 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Just wanting to again acknowledge your research on this topic, Jacques. I'll be getting back to you on some of this in the near future. In the meantime, you might check out the entry from the Catholic Encyclopedia. It's the 1917 edition but it seems to acknowledge some of the possibilities you're calling attention to.
- see http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/01559a.htm
 
Posts: 3542 | Location: Wichita, KS | Registered: 27 December 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Phil wrote:
quote:
What I've read is that there was a conflation of his teaching concerning the end times and his predictions of impending doom for Jerusalem.


Agreed - while I prefer the rather open position the CCC takes on the antichrist and final tribulation, I do feel that it may still be suffering from the affects of that conflation.

Then again, perhaps this teaching is drawn from the end of the apocalypse of John and not from the earlier chapters. What I mean to say is that Chapters 1-19 see the judgement and destruction of both Jerusalem, the Antichrist/beast and perhaps the Roman Empire as well. Then chapter 20 sees the 1000-year reign of Christ - which may be understood as the church age. At the end of the 1000 years/church age Satan is allowed to make one final attack on the people of God, one in which he will draw together a mass of humanity (the number of them is like the sand of the seashore Rev. 20:9). They besiege the camp of the saints and the beloved city (literal/metaphor?) and are then destroyed by fire that comes down from heaven and devours them.

If this passage holds the key to the CCC's teaching on the final antichrist deception and the final tribulation of the church then I could better understand it's position, but if it is based on the erroneous conflation of earlier texts with later interpretations I would be less inclined to go along.
 
Posts: 715 | Location: South Africa | Registered: 12 August 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Jacques, I'm not positive of the Church's reasoning, but it's pretty clear that Jesus did promise to come again to judge the living and the dead, and that's got nothing to do with the fall of Jerusalem, Roman emperors, and so forth. Most likely the references to the anti-Christ do come from the end of Revelation.

Here's a good chart outlining the distinctions between premillenial, postmillenial and amillenial positions. I believe the RCC is mostly amillenial, though I doubt there's anything close to doctrinal teaching on this point.
- http://www.fivesolas.com/esc_chrt.htm
 
Posts: 3542 | Location: Wichita, KS | Registered: 27 December 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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it's pretty clear that Jesus did promise to come again to judge the living and the dead, and that's got nothing to do with the fall of Jerusalem, Roman emperors, and so forth.


Yes, definitely! But often the verses that people think are about Jesus returning are actually about Jesus coming in judgement & coming to the Father/Ancient of Days (as per Daniel 7:13-14; Matt 24:30 and 26:64).

This is not meant to take away from the fact that Jesus will return to judge the living and the dead - though perhaps our image of what this will be like has been affected by the conflation of the previous texts with these - Acts 1:11; Hebrews 9:28; 2 Tim 4:1,8 and Rev. 20:11-15.

In the final analysis the Lamb and God will be with us on the (Re)New(ed) Earth and only those who have been found written in the lambs book of life will be there with Them. To gain entry to the New Earth we must all stand before the Judgement Seat of God. All of this will take place after the final defeat of Satan at the close of the (A)Millennial reign of Christ and the Saints.

Thanks for the link Phil, I found the passage on Amillenialism closest to my own views as I currently understand them.
 
Posts: 715 | Location: South Africa | Registered: 12 August 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Jacques,

I am still unable to determine what you believe regarding my question #1. (And I’m thinking that that’s the case because you still don’t know what you believe – despite (alas) six years having now elapsed since you took your course in eschatology). I see a lot of verbal dancing going on in your posts but no real clarity. I am not trying to coerce you into RC belief. I am simply asking what You believe these days. I’m asking if you are in touch with your own head.

You seem to state (in a typically slippery non-committed way) that you can now believe that scripture indicates there is definitely an antichrist in mankind’s forthcoming future. Can I read commitment in these words? Not really, since it is yet hard to tell what you mean. “I can reconcile my current beliefs concerning antichrist with those found in the CCC” you write. But “can” is not the same as “do”, and you don’t come out with a simple statement indicating you “do” – just that you could. (Kinda like saying I could ask Mary, or Sue or Eileen to the prom).

And it’s not clear what you believe relative to whether the Antichrist will be an individual. I had asked what YOU believed relative to there being a ‘future political leader forthcoming who will be the Antichrist’.

Also, it seems based on your response that you don’t realize the connection of issue 1 with issue 2 (Christ can come at any time now?) You gave a firm ‘yes’ to issue 2. [I do like your clarity to that part of your post]. However, based on the linkage of 2 to 1 as found in scripture, your answer to 2 indicates (even without your murky though almost seeming ‘yes’ to issue 1) that your belief regarding ‘whether there will be a future political figure who will be the Antichrist’ is in fact: No (despite your endeavors at fluidity).

Hey, free country right? Both in the USA and in South Africa, right? You are certainly entitled to your beliefs!

I had stated my beliefs in my ‘condescending?’ post on the kundalini thread, based on what I read in scripture. Realizing that you and Stephen and many others who visit here at SP are Protestant and not RC or OC, I decided not to use the CoCC as a substantiating reference for my belief since scripture (the same NT scripture that is the basis of the CoCC anyway) I thought would be sufficient to explain the reasoning behind my belief. So, instead, I gave readers a good listing of applicable NT scriptures and excluded Revelation which is apocalyptic in its imagery and more prone to interpretation issues.

Since I think this subject matter important, I will try once more to clarify. I will also explain why I feel all this to be significant. After this post, I won’t belabor nor press the issue. (Lol, me for a ‘shaking of the dust from my feet’ after this).

One finds in sacred scripture (in 2 Thess 2) the following information regarding the events surrounding the Second Coming: “On the question of the coming of the Lord Jesus Christ and our being gathered to Him [nothing to do with the destruction of the Jewish temple in 70 AD that I can see in those words], we beg you brothers, not to be so easily agitated or terrified … into believing that the day of the Lord is here. Let no one seduce you, no matter how. Since the mass apostasy has not yet occurred nor the man of lawlessness been revealed … Thereupon the lawless one [an individual] will be revealed and the Lord Jesus will destroy him [HIM – an individual …note that the scripture does NOT read: “the lawless will be revealed and the Lord Jesus will destroy them and annihilate them] with the breath of his mouth and annihilate him [HIM – an individual] by manifesting His own presence [never happened in the days of the Roman emperors]. [Note also the wording His ‘own’ presence which supports the fact that the lawless one also has his ‘own’ presence and is thereby an individual being]. This lawless one [an individual] will appear as part of the workings of Satan, accompanied by all the power and signs and wonders at the disposal of falsehood [never happened in the days of the Roman emperors – we’re talking about supernatural manifestations here].

Based upon the above and the sequential linking of events found there, I posted my response to Stephen regarding December of this year being a non-possibility for the Second Coming – (kind of in the sense of ‘we beg you brothers, not to be so easily agitated’). [Alas, it seems my manner wasn’t ‘begging’ enough since my frustration was showing].

Jacques, you almost seem averse to forming any opinion beyond perhaps the opinion that there’s nothing better than fluidity. I’m thinking that perhaps you esteem ‘fluidity’. Perhaps you consider it an intellectual virtue of some kind. Is this the case, and is this the case for many others as well? Is this a meme-color thing?

Today’s secular culture goofs on certitude concerning God and the things of God. It goofs on absolutes. Among some, complex thoughts and rationalizations are held in high regard -- higher regard than is the simple revelation of Christianity. And many Christians can’t get out from under such secular habit and into accepting the word of God in its simplicity. In contemporary secular society and among Christians sometimes as well, anyone speaking of absolutes and airing certitude is seen to be: condescending and arrogant. Certitude is arrogant. Certitude is ignorant (non-intellectual). Certitude is biased. Certitude is prejudiced. Certitude is one-sided thinking. Certitude is simplistic (though the Lord your God is One). Certitude means opinionated.

I ask you: can one accept martyrdom without certitude, without being opinionated relative to Christ? Isn’t it obvious that St. Paul was opinionated?

As one grows more and more in their love of Christ does it not make sense to believe that they will know Christ more deeply? As one grows more and more in their knowledge of Christ does it not make sense to believe that they will love Christ more deeply and that they will love and know His revealed truth more deeply?

Should we NOT be growing in certitude?! Can we be growing in the love of Christ and not somehow deepening our beliefs and our certitude?

Anyway, concerning the Second Coming and all this that we are discussing, it is all quite relevant and important, in my estimation. What one believes determines to a large degree how one acts / will act (given one does act in concert with their beliefs when a situation arises).

What that means for those of you who agree with Jacques regarding thinking there will be no political figure forthcoming in the future as the Antichrist (and also that the Antichrist is indeed an individual) is that you are living life unprepared and oblivious. You are living in nonchalance. As such, you may ‘vote-in’ the future Antichrist some day in your lifetime, even lobby politically for the causes of the future Antichrist, or have your kids join the future Antichrist’s Youth Corps.

Hard to take me seriously? Hey, there are folk today, who consider themselves good Christians who vote-in, and lobby strongly for the cause of a pro-choice agenda, who agree with and with great dedication serve political antichrists and even invite them to commencement proceedings at major Catholic universities in the U.S. and honor them with honorary degrees. Their acts accord with their beliefs. Similarly there are those who unwittingly serve the cause that may undue freedom of religion in the USA.

Contrariwise, one can worry unnecessarily that the end might be soon forthcoming. One can sell all their belongings and wear Campy’s t-shirts and evangelize about the end (and rapture even) and give the secular world a few more chuckles (because we’ve dismissed the appearance of an Antichrist as a necessary consideration -- despite the 2 Thess 2 insights indicating his appearance and his persecution of the church is a necessary precursor for the Second Coming.)

Hey, there’s always the ole “you can’t know the day nor the hour” scripture. I’ve been hearing that half-truth for years. One can let the devil fool you with that one -- makes for either a vintage nonchalance while enabling the loss of other relevant eschatological scriptures, or for a ‘chicken little’ panicking.

When Christ was asked (Matt 24:3) “what will be the sign of your coming and the end of the world?” He said a whole lot more than: “you can’t know the day nor the hour”. He could have said merely that (as I have so often heard from the pulpit) but He told us much much more, and the Holy Spirit subsequently reminded the evangelists what Christ had said and which they included in their gospel narratives. Note too, that ‘the sign of your coming and the end of the world’ is a quite different subject matter than the destruction of the Jewish temple in 70 AD – though that was indeed prophesized by Christ.

Anyway, what I had posted was not my own creation, not simply my own one-sided narrow minded mindset. Indeed it is the formal teaching of the CoCC as Phil linked to in his post. There one finds the following: (Note my bold-font text).

680 Christ the Lord already reigns through the Church, but all the things of this world are not yet subjected to him. The triumph of Christ's kingdom will not come about without one last assault by the powers of evil.

677 The Church will enter the glory of the kingdom only through this final Passover, when she will follow her Lord in his death and Resurrection.579 The kingdom will be fulfilled, then, not by a historic triumph of the Church through a progressive ascendancy, but only by God's victory over the final unleashing of evil, which will cause his Bride to come down from heaven.580 God's triumph over the revolt of evil will take the form of the Last Judgment after the final cosmic upheaval of this passing world.581

Please believe me that Pope Benedict agrees with the CoCC. The destruction of the Jewish Temple in 70 AD is a tad off-topic regarding the Second Coming which was the original reason that Stephen’s Mayan calendar musings on the kundalini forum thread led us into this round of discussions.

The Book of Revelation was written several decades after the destruction of the Jewish Temple. It would not be considered a prophetic book if the destruction of the temple in 70 AD were the heart of Revelation’s prophetic subject matter.

The attention Jacques has given to the 70 AD Temple Destruction event and all the Josephus Wars accounts of what happened to the Jews (not the early Christian churches) was informative but ….

Anyway, I have endeavored to bring you all to the water I find tasty. It’s a free country (so far) here in the USA and I believe in South Africa as well; and so you can drink or not, as you so choose. ….. LOL, it’s fluid!
*****
On another note:

Stephen posts: “I ask you to consider that the Second Coming may not be a glorious skyly rapturisation or full blown trumpet blast over all the earth.” ---- Why ask me to consider that what is written cannot be so?

Stephen posts: “I ask you to consider that …. such descriptions [of the Second Coming] throughout the NT are images for a glorious heartly implosion of Christ consciousness in the heart of the heart of believers.” ---- Why ask me to consider that the Second Coming is something totally different than what scripture talks to? Why ask me to accept something that does not fit in with all the other scriptural texts that surround the Second Coming and all that it heralds – which includes the termination of the persecution of the body of Christ and the annihilation of the Antichrist by the manifesting of Christ’s own presence, and the resurrection of dead and the living, and the final judgment. Stephen has no right to ask that of me, really. We are not to add to nor subtract from scripture – not to fiddle with it or reinterpret it. These are God’s scriptures, not mine, not Stephen’s.

(Please realize, that I have no issues with the validity of kundalini sensations and its presence in Stephen --and others -- and what it might or might not signify. I am not putting it or Stephen or his pineal gland down. But don’t conflate all that with the second coming or introduce a concept of an interior mystical second coming. Call it a spiritual unction, a gusto, a grace, a gift … whatever….but NOT a second coming.)

The Holy Spirit may indeed prepare and strengthen the faithful remnant to survive the last days and the persecution the church will undergo (despite what Jacques says, who does not believe there will be an Antichrist to do any persecuting). It makes sense that the Holy Spirit would. The angels strengthened Christ in the Garden of Gethsemane prior to His passion. Scripture informs us that God does nothing without first revealing it to his friends the prophets. He will be assisting the faithfuls’ survival.

See how a lot can hinge on what one believes relative to the Antichrist being yet in our future or not? And that above paragraph of mere conjecture would only apply (perhaps) if the Antichrist was on the near-horizon anyway. If the Antichrist is centuries or millennia off in the future, then why prep Stephen and I and others relative to the Second Coming – as Stephen seems to consider kundalini infusions might be related to? And also, why do any kundalini prep work among the Christian faithful at all if Christ can come tomorrow in his Second Coming as Jacques maintains he can?

Sorry for such a long post. I have said my piece because I think it important, and will now be shaking dust.

Pop-pop
p.s. Truth is not a ‘fluid reality’.
 
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Pop, I feel like you've simply driven a steam-roller over what I've written. Your caricature of my position is so far off the mark that I don't even know where to start replying to you.

Feeling unheard Frowner
 
Posts: 715 | Location: South Africa | Registered: 12 August 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Pops,

My pineal gland thanks you.

Gee whizz, Pops, I was only making a suggestion. Your ardour works harder than a larder. Now I'm all discombobulated. Scriptural literalism to the last, eh? Perhaps you're right though. Perhaps the kundalini preparation is for another kind of grace. I'm happy to be uncertain. I like mystery, adventure, exploration. Ain't no room for mystery with you poppa bear. Never mind. Don't choke on that dry dry dust flying up from yr feet now.

Love you like a fiery prophet brother partly rapturised.

Stephen
 
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Pop pop, it seems to me that you are unaware that theological option or diversity exists and that biblical interpretation is just that, an interpretation. While the Catholic Church has dogmatized many truths in Christianity that does not mean that there is no longer any mystery or any unknown realities. What I have painstakingly described as the preterist position is well within Catholic Orthodoxy as is the futurism that you hold, though it seems harder to fit within the overall teaching of the church regarding the destruction of Jerusalem...in fact I wonder if you even acknowledge that you are a futurist, perhaps you are just simply a truth teller, THE truth teller and all who deviate from your position are slippery, non-committal and far too fluid.

quote:
I am still unable to determine what you believe regarding my question #1. (And I’m thinking that that’s the case because you still don’t know what you believe – despite (alas) six years having now elapsed since you took your course in eschatology). I see a lot of verbal dancing going on in your posts but no real clarity. I am not trying to coerce you into RC belief. I am simply asking what You believe these days. I’m asking if you are in touch with your own head.

You seem to state (in a typically slippery non-committed way) that you can now believe that scripture indicates there is definitely an antichrist in mankind’s forthcoming future. Can I read commitment in these words? Not really, since it is yet hard to tell what you mean. “I can reconcile my current beliefs concerning antichrist with those found in the CCC” you write. But “can” is not the same as “do”, and you don’t come out with a simple statement indicating you “do” – just that you could. (Kinda like saying I could ask Mary, or Sue or Eileen to the prom).

And it’s not clear what you believe relative to whether the Antichrist will be an individual. I had asked what YOU believed relative to there being a ‘future political leader forthcoming who will be the Antichrist’.


Okay, let me try to be clearer: While at the beginning of this discussion I was unaware of the potential relationship between Rev 20 and the CoCC's teaching on the Antichrist I therefore found it difficult to reconcile the preterist position with the belief in a future antichrist.

But, this discussion has helped me re-evaluate my position and I can now see where the link may be. So while I still hold that most of the references that you link with a future antichrist and second coming are actually referring to past realities, I DO affirm that the church will go through a final trial just before the final judgement, and thus my attitude is not one of nonchalance or oblivious carelessness.

No, I cannot affirm or deny that this final trial will manifest as a physical future political ruler since that is not what Rev 20 specifically says. In fact, it is not even what the CoCC says. Unlike you, the CoCC is very vague on this matter, I believe purposefully so. It seems to me that despite the 2000 year relationship with Christ in which the Church has clearly grown in love of Christ and deepened its' beliefs and certitude on many issues, this eschatological reality is not one of those that have been deepened to the point of official dogma/doctrine beyond the vague description provided in the catechism.

Now before you accuse me of believing nothing and trying to sow confusion or relativity, I like and agree with what the Catechism states on the matter:

quote:
675 Before Christ's second coming the Church must pass through a final trial that will shake the faith of many believers.574 The persecution that accompanies her pilgrimage on earth575 will unveil the "mystery of iniquity" in the form of a religious deception offering men an apparent solution to their problems at the price of apostasy from the truth. The supreme religious deception is that of the Antichrist, a pseudo-messianism by which man glorifies himself in place of God and of his Messiah come in the flesh.576

676 The Antichrist's deception already begins to take shape in the world every time the claim is made to realize within history that messianic hope which can only be realized beyond history through the eschatological judgment. The Church has rejected even modified forms of this falsification of the kingdom to come under the name of millenarianism,577 especially the "intrinsically perverse" political form of a secular messianism.578

677 The Church will enter the glory of the kingdom only through this final Passover, when she will follow her Lord in his death and Resurrection.579 The kingdom will be fulfilled, then, not by a historic triumph of the Church through a progressive ascendancy, but only by God's victory over the final unleashing of evil, which will cause his Bride to come down from heaven.580 God's triumph over the revolt of evil will take the form of the Last Judgment after the final cosmic upheaval of this passing world.581


That said, as I mentioned before I fear some confusion on the part of the catechism due to a conflation of past and future events.

I am willing to accept that while the Church affirms the preterist interpretation of scripture, it holds that these past realities speak prophetically to the future.

In other words, even though the antichrist was a first century reality, a final antichrist reality is still to come. While the tribulation is a past reality, a future tribulation is still to come. While the mystery of iniquity is a past reality, the future still holds the final mystery of iniquity.

But the church is not as specific as you are regarding what these realities will be...only that they will be. The Church seems to steer away from taking each of your supporting scriptures word for word since I feel they agree that these specifics related to the past and they only speak prophetically to a future reality still to be revealed.

This message has been edited. Last edited by: Jacques,
 
Posts: 715 | Location: South Africa | Registered: 12 August 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I think your post above presents a pretty fair summary of Catholic teaching on the end times and anti-Christ, Jacques. As the link I posted above indicates, Catholics and most main-line churches are a-millenialists. From that site:
quote:
b. Amillennialists insist that the promises made to national Israel, David and Abraham, in the OT are fulfilled by Christ and the Church during this age, which is the millennium, that is the entire period of time between the two advents of our Lord. The "thousand years" are therefore symbolic of the entire inter-advental age. Satan is bound by Christ's victory over him and the establishment of the kingdom of God via the preaching of the gospel, and Satan is no longer free to deceive the nations, through the presence of Christ is reigning in heaven during this period with the martyrs who come out of the great tribulation. At the end of the millennial age, Christ returns in judgement of all men. The general resurrection occurs, final judgement takes place for all men and women, and a new Heaven and Earth are established.

C. In most forms of amillennialism, immediately before the return of Christ, Satan is unbound, there is a great apostasy, and a time of unprecedented satanically inspired evil. This last Satanic gasp and subsequent rebellious activity is destroyed by our Lord at his return.


- - -

What interests me more in this discussion is the reference made by Stephen and others on how this all might relate to kundalini activity on the planet. I think that was in our other thread, however. I'm not so sure there's much of a relationship, inasmuch as k activity seems to be quite uncommon and people who are sincere Christians are quite numerous.
 
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I wonder, Phil, if k activity in individuals forms an umbrella of sorts over families or communities. In other words it works at a collective level, or has a collective effect, and the individual has the potential to be a vessel of the grace God gives collectively, by way of k's clearing of ego.
 
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Phil,

you wrote:

quote:
What interests me more in this discussion is the reference made by Stephen and others on how this all might relate to kundalini activity on the planet. I think that was in our other thread, however. I'm not so sure there's much of a relationship, inasmuch as k activity seems to be quite uncommon and people who are sincere Christians are quite numerous.


Speculatin for the FUN of speculatin -- and doing some Imagineering – an answer to your last sentence could be (note I am NOT saying is): That while sincere Christians are indeed numerous (would that they were more numerous these days) K could be analogous to the charisms of the H.S. which are given to an individual for the sake of building up the church. They are given for the church.

As a fun-loving speculative example one could say K (good old-fashioned Christ–centered K) is analogous to the charism of miracles and to the charism of prophecy as well, and perhaps others (discernment of spirits). Continuing on (in mere speculation) one could speculate that if the Antichrist is to manifest signs and wonders, then perhaps prophets of the Lord would also – kind of like Moses vs. Pharaoh’s gang. True prophets against false prophets will be in play during (and perhaps a tad prior to) the Antichrist’s unleashing of evil and deceit.

Another scenario: such K-charismatics would assist in evangelization (in the near days) of a secularized world that has fallen prey to not believing in the reality of the supernatural and of the entire realm of the spiritual. Short of the unexplainable what could turn rationalistic, technology-focused secular mankind to once again consider the things of God and His revelation regarding Himself and supernature. (Sometimes I have to say, that I think that nothing short of the miraculous could make a dent in the secularized mindset of our times). K-charismatics could be players in the new evangelization the church talks of and prays for. This latter scenario does not necessitate the appearance of the Antichrist in this century, but would aid in assisting mankind in a return to religion and the spiritual. Christ worked signs and wonders as part of His evangelizing. Christ said his followers would do the works He did and greater still.

Could this be what is in-process? Who knows? One waits on the Lord. I am merely brainstorming a response to your post – having some ... Saturday night fever.

The powers-in-place were quick to want to rid themselves of Christ though. His displays of power were a threat they did not like the taste of; so K-folk would, while liked by many, be hated by the powers-in-place. Plots to kill Jesus are mentioned in scripture. Reaction to K-charismatics might be severe. Papparazzi would be quite a cross.

Imagine Shasha on a dark rainy night levitating to the top of the Washington Monument and vinyl wallpapering a Stop Abortion message of some sort (her choice of words) there, that media and the DC police would go crazy wondering about how it was done. I would stand guard at the bottom. Later we could go for a slice of pizza and an IPA!

LOL. How’s that for Imagineering Jersey-style?

Pop-pop,
Blue-meme clan
 
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Stephen and Pop . . . maybe so (to your conjectures). Smiler So much of what's really going on seems to be hidden and beyond our understanding. How God will make use of our lives and gifts in a future situation is yet to be revealed.

I have had a sense for some time that contemplatives are making an important contribution unto saving the race even if they're not too terribly active in social ministries. We are all connected with God, creation and one another at a very deep level, and every time one of us draws closer to God, the human race draws closer to God as well. I suppose K transformation is effecting the whole race as well. Why not?
 
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In the spirit of Pop pop and other's imagineering...I've often considered this possibility.

Perhaps as time proceeds there will be many more kundalini awakenings as Stephen suggests.

Perhaps a new spiritual age is beckoning just over the horizon. There may be many advances in spiritual science and experience - signs and miracles abounding.

But as this process develops there will be those who allow the snake (kundalini) to deceive them into thinking that they are god/gods and that there is no need to submit to any other God.

And then there will be others still who place the snake in it's rightful place in submission to Christ. In the end the final tribulation will occur when those who assume that the snake alone is God will persecute those who place all in submission to Christ.
 
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quote:
Originally posted by pop-pop:
...
Imagine Shasha on a dark rainy night levitating to the top of the Washington Monument and vinyl wallpapering a Stop Abortion message ...

If God wants me to do that, I'm UP for it!
(pun intended) Wink
 
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quote:
Originally posted by Jacques:
...
Perhaps a new spiritual age is beckoning just over the horizon. There may be many advances in spiritual science and experience - signs and miracles abounding.

But as this process develops there will be those who allow the snake (kundalini) to deceive them into thinking that they are god/gods and that there is no need to submit to any other God.

And then there will be others still who place the snake in it's rightful place in submission to Christ. In the end the final tribulation will occur when those who assume that the snake alone is God will persecute those who place all in submission to Christ.
That's exactly my sense too, Jacques! I've seen, first-hand, very 'enlightened' kundalini masters so high on this energy and the bliss and ecstasy it brings that they have no need of Jesus or any kind of Savior. None. Zero. Zip. They will tell you plainly: I am God! And you can be too! They only need that surging, boundless, infinite consciousness that kundalini brings. You actually hear them singing praises to kundalini, referring to it as a "She," as the Goddess, as divine, as God's manifest power.

Phil, I wonder what would have happened to you with kundalini awakening had you not been committed to Christ and had a solid foundation of obedience and submission to God. You've said many times that speaking in tongues has helped balance and carry you through the rough spots with kundalini movement. It seems the Holy Spirit has been protecting you and guiding you, maybe keeping kundalini in its proper place, as Jacques suggests.

Somewhere I shared about that frightening, weird encounter I had with that kundalini master who proudly referred to herself as a "snake person" and said the world was divided into those who are "snake people" and those who were not. Phil had shared that he had spoken to her on the phone, I believe, and described her as sincere or genuine or something nice like that. She actually appeared in my bedroom the night I explored her website. This was NOT a pretty sight, and I was thrust into a battle. I hesitate to talk about it for I truly believe it was evil, but if somebody wants to hear about it, I'll dig it up.
 
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Relative to: "proudly referred to herself as a "snake person" and said the world was divided into those who are "snake people" and those who were not". That's kind of reminiscent of Gen 3:15 that talks to the offspring of the serpent as distinct from the offspring of the woman.

But I would think that what's going on in one's body, sensation-wise and consciousness-wise, is distinct from what is going on in one's free will, in one's heart. True circumcision is circumcision of the heart. It's more an "I will not serve" versus "Be it done unto me according to thy word". The first from the serpent and the latter from the woman. What kind of soil we desire to be and prove to be is the real issue. Kundalini sensation or kundalini-like sensation (I really can't say) is something to not focus on I believe SJOC would say. Retain focus on Christ and let (accept passively) whatever occurs sensation-wise go on but not become our focus. Leave judgment of that to God. Remain detached from K and attached to Christ. [That's my thought fwiw. I don't see that you can stop what is occurring sensation-wise, and there's no sense getting wrapped around beating oneself scruple-wise with what is beyond one's ability to stop. We just ever STEER ourselves Christward, and trust in the H.S. who indwells and loves us, and in the guardian spirits who attend us. Fwiw from my head.]
 
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quote:
Originally posted by pop-pop:
Relative to: "proudly referred to herself as a "snake person" and said the world was divided into those who are "snake people" and those who were not". That's kind of reminiscent of Gen 3:15 that talks to the offspring of the serpent as distinct from the offspring of the woman....
Gee, I never realized that before, Pops.

Genesis 3:15


15 And I will put enmity
between you and the woman,
and between your offspring[a] and hers;
he will crush[b] your head,
and you will strike his heel.”
 
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quote:
What kind of soil we desire to be and prove to be is the real issue. Kundalini sensation or kundalini-like sensation (I really can't say) is something to not focus on I believe SJOC would say. Retain focus on Christ and let (accept passively) whatever occurs sensation-wise go on but not become our focus. Leave judgment of that to God. Remain detached from K and attached to Christ. [That's my thought fwiw. I don't see that you can stop what is occurring sensation-wise, and there's no sense getting wrapped around beating oneself scruple-wise with what is beyond one's ability to stop. We just ever STEER ourselves Christward, and trust in the H.S. who indwells and loves us, and in the guardian spirits who attend us. Fwiw from my head.]


I think that's very good counsel, Pop.

Re. "snake people." See http://bible.cc/genesis/3-14.htm for some good reflection (scroll down a bit).

I've noted before that I don't think the snake of Genesis has anything to do with kundalini. Snake symbolism in ancient mythology has many meanings, not all bad. In this case, of course, it's the means by which Satan tempts our first parents, and so that is a very negative connotation. But later, in the desert, the serpent becomes a symbol of healing -- one that Christ himself identified with (see Nm. 21:8, Jn. 3:14).
 
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[QUOTE]Originally posted by Shasha:

That's exactly my sense too, Jacques! I've seen, first-hand, very 'enlightened' kundalini masters so high on this energy and the bliss and ecstasy it brings that they have no need of Jesus or any kind of Savior. /QUOTE]

Hi Shasha, just a comment. From my understanding
& I understand there are many understandings,
people who get caught up in energy, bliss and
ecstasy are caught in a trap called psuedo enlightenment before enlightenment.
I've seen it where they are so caught up in this
seeing themselves as great teachers & no one has been able to get through to them for years, maybe never.
 
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Here is a link to a talk given by the Institute of Catholic Culture on the Fall of Jerusalem .

Dr. Timothy O'Donnel discusses the event of 70 AD in relation to Christ's prophecies and gives a general preterist account of the incidents.

He does however leave the possibility of a future general fulfilment of these same prophecies as they may relate to the time before Christ's Final Return and Judgement.

All in all a very good approach to the subject.

On a more general note I've been listening to a number of their other talks on subjects like the Protestant Reformation, East-West Schism and the like - very good stuff.
 
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I just finished listening to another talk from the Catholic Culture website that bears on the discussion we've had. 666: The Mark of the Beast & Who Really Will Be Left Behind . I'm really excited to find such confirmation of preterism in the Catholic Church. If the viewpoint has any credibility it must have representation in the historical tradition of the church of which the Catholic Church holds the longest standing vision.
 
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ALL,

Jesus tells us: “Learn a lesson from the fig tree.”(1) He tells us this, not because He is stupid. Not because He is stupid.

He told us this because He believed that we could know; that we could indeed learn a lesson from the fig tree! He didn’t think He’d be talking through his hat in giving us insight. He told us this because He believed we could and would profit from what He revealed to us about the end times – and what He revealed to us was much more than that we couldn’t know the exact day nor the hour.

To merely focus on our inability to know the exact day and hour (2) is to do an injustice to Christ’s intent and to ourselves as well thereby (for all He does, He does out of love for us).

To merely focus on our inability to know the exact day and hour is to espouse less than the fullness of truth; is to undermine the goal of Christ and the Holy Spirit who inspired the synoptic evangelists to incorporate this information in their gospel accounts. To promote less than the fullness of truth – when fullness was given us (in black & white) – might sometimes be negligent or even deceptive (wittingly or unwittingly).

Of course, when I wrote above that He believed that we could know and could indeed learn a lesson from the fig tree, I was writing facetiously in that, in fact, Christ knew that his detailing of the staging of end-time events could be known – indeed would be known. He knew that the Father and the Holy Spirit would be insuring in those end-time days that His words, His revelation would be known by His disciples and His disciples would profit from this insight into the future.

But who are his disciples who will be in the know?

Who? Who will be in the know in end-time days … despite:

despite: * the increase of evil (3) (Consider when in the history of the world 53 million pregnant women in one country alone, not to mention in other nations, killed their unborn child – and not in secret, nor in shame, but at the sanction, and funding and promotion of their government and its leaders who additionally fund the UN in these same regards for ‘population control’ [is all this not an increase] consider when in the 2000 year history of Christianity that entire denominations promulgated abortion and pro-choice agendas, homosexual ministers, and gay marriage, who say evil is good [/i] [is all this not an -- increase]– btw, this is clear evidence of the many false teachers {antichrists} currently active within Christendom); the statistics on the failure of marriage, both secular and Christian [is all this not an increase]; the addiction to pornography and its acceptability as well as availability [is all this not an -- increase]; the statistics on those who ‘live together’ [is this not an -- increase]; the persecution of the Christian church worldwide in the last century and this one.

despite: * the love of most growing cold (4) (Consider that in Europe, the cradle of Christianity, only 4 % of RCs attend Sunday mass regularly, and in the U.S. only about 1/3 of RCs attend Sunday mass regularly [is this not evidence that – most have grown cold, is not more than 50% what ‘most’ means] )

despite: * the existence of plausible liars and false teachers …(The liars of these past few decades must seemingly be plausible since so many have apostasized already or have embraced a flawed orthodoxy with a dedicated orthopraxy).

despite: * the true way being made subject to contempt (6) and that ‘scoffers will come in the last days’(7) (Consider for example an article entitled ‘Modern Churches’ by Paul Smith which is currently being promoted at KW’s Integral Life website. It provides an overt example of an antichrist at work. It betrays all the arrogance against the Lord that befits the boldness of the devil. ‘By their fruits you shall know them’; ‘It is what comes out of a man that makes him impure’; ‘Does a spring pour forth from the same opening fresh water and brackish? Can a fig tree yield olives, or a grapevine, figs? No more can salt water yield fresh.’ (8) How much more data does a Christian need in order to know the fruits of this author, and as well, of this website? Does one need to eat a whole pot of burnt pudding? Is not a first taste from a single teaspoon sufficient? Aiyee.)

despite: * brother turning against brother (9) (Consider the betrayals of the Pope’s butler and some cardinals in today’s news; and the betrayals of the magisterium by the leadership within American Catholic universities like Notre Dame and Georgetown and some superiors of orders of American nuns. Protestant denominations {Episcopal and Lutheran as examples} have undergone split-ups because of doctrinal betrayals as well: based on issues like pro-choice, gay marriage and gay ministers.)

despite: * the performing of signs and wonders so spectacular as to mislead even the faithful were that possible (10) (not as yet manifest. in-process. by their fruits we will know them. when data becomes available.)

despite: * God sending a perverse spirit on mankind leading those who have not believed the truth to give credence to falsehood and be condemned (11) (Consider the contemporary spirituality scene seducing many away from Christ though supposedly towards God and a pseudo-deification; promoting outgrowing the ‘mythic’ levels of spirituality and traditional churches and religion in favor of the cosmic integral levels of the modern emerging church. And yet scripture clearly states: “Anyone who is so progressive that he does not remain rooted in the teachings of Christ does not possess God.” (12) Quite often mention of Christ is neglected, if not openly dismissed. Christianity is seen as merely another religious tradition. The eschatological teachings of Christ are dismissed in favor of a cheery optimism that betrays the revelation of Christ or neglects the need for watchfulness.)

Who? Who will be ‘in the know’ in those days: – those who hear the word of God and act on it. (13) He who keeps the commandments and has a proper wedding garment. (14 & 15) Those wise virgins with oil in their lamps who are watchful for their master’s return.(16) (Consider whether those who do not anticipate a future political figure being the Antichrist will really be ‘being watchful’ for the Master’s return – for His coming again). ‘Those servants whom the master finds wide awake on his return’.(17) He who ‘tests the spirits’ (18). Those ‘rooted in Christ and not deceived by a seductive philosophy that follows mere human traditions, a philosophy based on cosmic powers rather than on Christ’ (19)

And WHO in those days … will survive to his coming? -- Only they who pray constantly (20). (Who else can know the good shepherd’s voice except those who speak to Him in prayer and hear and listen for His voice?) [A tad different than turning on one’s Profound Meditation Bundle].

Another good question besides ‘So where are we going?’ might be: ‘So where are we now?’

Pope JPII, while yet a cardinal, said the following in an address to the United Nations in 1976: “We are now standing in the face of the greatest historical confrontation that humanity has ever gone through. I do not think that the wide circle of American society or the wide circles of the Christian community realize this fully. We are now facing the final confrontation between the Church and the Anti-Church, of the Gospel versus the anti-Gospel. This confrontation lies within the plans of divine providence; it is a trial which the whole Church and the Polish Church in particular, must take up.

Stay awake. Don’t bother eating gobs of burnt pudding. Read the bible so your taste buds work well. Get used to being part of the less than most. Rejoice that you are. Soberly rejoice; prayerfully rejoice.

Watch and pray. Who knows, the new evangelization may be a ‘last call’. Things are already well underway and moving quickly. With the loss of privacy already surrendered and the technology available to a potential global union of nations that could become totalitarian under the AC when revealed, the locating and persecuting of the faithful remnant will be easily enabled.

Pop-pop
Blue-meme clan

p.s. Not a cheery subject you will say to me. I will say that I noticed that myself as well; but you should take that up with the Lord; the absence of cheery is His doing. Certainly it is not He who is the ‘father of lies’. Then too, there’s not much cheery about 53 million aborted lives in the U.S. alone, nor about the increasing expansion of Rubbledom one sees nightly on the news from the Mideast, nor the loss of a concept of sin, nor the advance of secular humanism, militant atheism, and the threat of possible loss of religious freedom in the U.S.

Hey, you want cheery – purchase an ‘audio serenity’ bundle and strap on your earbuds. La-la Land next stop! All aboard!

Should I be dismissed?

Should I be dismissed based solely on the existence of SO MANY different opinions?

Read about the ‘totally unconcerned’ in Matt 24:39. You too can be totally unconcerned if it pleases you -- free country.

“You are not in the dark, brothers, that the day should catch you off guard like a thief.”
(1 Thess 5:4)

“Let us, then, be children no longer, tossed here and there, carried about by every wind of doctrine that originates in human trickery and skill in proposing error.” Eph 4:14.

(1) Matt:24:32, Lk 21: 29
(2) Matt:24:36, 1 Thess 5:1&2
(3) Matt 24:12
(4) Matt 24:12
(5)
(6) 2 Pet 2:2
(7) 2 Pet 3:3
(8) Jas 3:11 &12
(9) Mk 13:12
(10) Matt 24:24, 2 Thess 2:9
(11) 2 Thess 2:11
(12) 2 Jn 9
(13) Lk 5:21
(14) Jn 14:21, Lk 21:36
(15) Matt 22:11 & 12; Col 2:7&8
(16) Matt 25:1-13
(17) Lk 12:37
(18) 1 Thess 5:21
(19)
(20) Lk 21:36

The above are from what some folk (albeit blue-memes) call, or used to call: ‘the Good Book’
 
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