A FRESH LOOK AT
"Excuse me, but ..."
Have you heard the latest holocaust forecast from your Christian community? Based on their ideas from Revelation, Daniel, and Ezekiel, there are some mighty scary days ahead, just around the corner. In fact, Christians all clamor to present the most up-to-date reports on how precisely the Bible predicts current events - the establishment of Israel, the European Economic Community, Russian adventurism, bar codes, computer chip implants, economic troubles, a reconstruction of Babylon, a one-world government, or concerning America - anything from how wonderful it is to how corrupt it is, and will be destroyed any day now. Of course, their predictions don't agree, depending on what schism you listen to. America could be the knight in shining armor to help resist a Russian Gog and Magog invasion of Israel. Or, some believe it's just the opposite - a mystery Babylon corrupt Sodom of sorts that gets fried by Russia and company, or Medo-Persia/Iran-Iraq, or someone. Some believe God will spare some of mankind through this terrible holocaust, while others predict in the end an absolute total zap of all mankind (except them and other faithful Christians, of course). Many say Christians will be preserved through a seven year "tribulation" period in which this horrendous catastrophe will occur. But then others say they will be taken out (raptured) in the middle of it. While even a third group forecasts total deliverance from this coming wrath, being raptured out before this "tribulation" begins. Whatever their particular choice (and this is not all of them), it's definitely holocaust for the unfaithful!
Let the stock market slip and - RUSH! - here come the Christian doomsayers predicting the beginning of sorrows. Let America print another hundred dollar bill, and in the back of every Christian's mind is a coming one-world government. President Bush spoke of a "new world order," and Christians shuddered that the Illuminati were on the loose. When Russia invaded Afghanistan, what was next? A super highway passage straight down to Israel for a soon Russian invasion. Did it happen? No. When the European Economic Community was established, out was to jump a ten-toed/ten nation beast that was to dominate the world, with a European antichrist at the helm and "the beast" computer in the basement. But now that this anticipated beast has sprouted many more than ten toes, where did he go? These examples are only the beginning, as some Christians participate in an end time feeding frenzy that is pathetic.
Christians read their Bibles and on the worldwide scene look for the absolute worst to happen - anything from the burning of America to the total annihilation of everyone alive today and everyone who has ever been alive (except for a select few "believers"). Those are pretty dismal predictions. (And if none of this doomsday gets the unbelieving, then the Christian bulk are certain there's a burning hell fire that awaits them to suffer in eternally.) Meanwhile, many Christians keep the survival food industry afloat, some are even talking about and acquiring weapons, while others flee or plan to flee to their own born again Masada (which in today's times are even more vulnerable than was the original Masada). What is their basis for these forecasts? They take the writings in Revelation, Daniel, Ezekiel, and other books as essentially literal (some proudly boasting of their "literal" interpretation, yet if it really was wholly literal then the locusts with men's faces, hair like women, breast plates of iron, and tails like scorpions [Revelation 9:3-11], would not be their helicopters). Whatever their "eschatological" (their fancy word for the end of the world) position, they essentially all hold to literal fire, earthquakes, hail, darkened heavens, water turning to blood (or red tide), and the sort. In fact, a "literal" interpretation of Revelation would leave the earth in the following state just before or at the return of Yahshua:
And additionally, if you follow the beliefs of some Christians, after all of this holocaust, not just one-third of mankind, or two-thirds, but everyone in totality who is not a true believer will be zapped, fried, decimated, turned to ash, entirely eliminated forever and ever. This is what Christians predict for the very near future of mankind. Not so pretty a future, and, one must conclude, the acts of a very, very, very (to say the least) wrathful God!
Yes, I know Yahweh speaks of "the great and terrible day of Yahweh" (Malachi 4:5). Yes, I know "It is a terrifying thing to fall into the hands of the living God" (Hebrews 10:31). And yes, I know "The day of Yahweh is indeed great and very awesome, and who can endure it?" (Joel 2:11). But I ask - Where are those who would fulfill the other associated verses in Joel and Malachi and cry out to Yahweh for mercy for all mankind, to be spared from His wrath from that great and terrible day? You, church, Christian, you proclaim that while in your sin you found God's mercy by crying out to Him. Excuse me, but why don't you plead to God for His mercy toward these unbelieving, that they would be saved from His wrath? Excuse me, but if you know God is a God of everlasting lovingkindness and His mercy endures forever, why don't you cry out for His mercy for those who do not have eyes to see? Excuse me, but the faith that you have to believe in Him is clearly not of yourself, but it is the gift of God alone toward you (Ephesians 2:8, Romans 12:3, 1 Corinthians 4:7), then why don't you cry out for mercy for those whom God has not given this great gift of faith, that they might be spared in the day of His wrath? Excuse me, but this is not a time to condemn the unrighteous to destruction and a wrathful holocaust end, but rather a time to intercede for and pray for God's mercy for them.
What do the other associated verses in Joel and Malachi say? Let us read. After declaring in Joel 2:11 - "The day of Yahweh is indeed great and very awesome, and who can endure it?" (including Christians!) - Yahweh then declares in the very next verse - "'Yet even now,' declares Yahweh, 'return to Me with all your heart, and with fasting, weeping, and mourning; and rend your heart and not your garments.' Now return to Yahweh your God, for He is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger, abounding in lovingkindness, and relenting of evil" (vss. 12-13). Yes, Yahweh has a great and terrible day planned; but, He is a gracious God and in His lovingkindness will relent of evil. "O give thanks to Yahweh, for He is good; for His lovingkindness is everlasting" (1 Chronicles 16:34, as well as over 150 times in other similar passages, including twenty-six times in Psalm 136 alone).
We will consider Malachi later, but let us ask - Where is an Abraham who will stand in the gap and intercede for a wicked and adulterous generation, even as Abraham did for wicked Sodom (Genesis 18:16f)? If you are a Christian, your inheritance is the world, even as part of Abraham's inheritance was Sodom - and being responsible for it, he pled for mercy on its behalf. So, why don't you plead for Yahweh to relent concerning His wrath upon the world? Abraham was told beforehand of the wrath to come, thus making him responsible to intercede for God's mercy. Christians likewise know of the wrath of God to come, thus they too have the same responsibility to intercede for the world, their inheritance.
Continue to page 2 of A Fresh Look... for WILL YAHWEH REPENT?
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