Well, it’s been a while since my last blog update. Bloem LTT, a week of being horribly sick, some scary times about my income and business, and a whole lot of things inbetween – finally, I get to write a blog entry. Yay! And, let’s hope it’s an interesting one.
Basically, last week when I was horribly sick I was watching TBN at home and listening to a ‘prophetic conference’ that happened somewhere (with some guy speaking who I can’t remember.) Medicine sometimes does that to you. It also makes you incredibly paranoid. After watching the guy talk about who he thinks the anti-christ is and all this information about an organisation called the Club of Rome (google them and check out their site), I kind of suffered from some minor paranoia and worry about what is going to happen next.
In fact, for many years now, I’ve been slowly trying to undoctrinate (if that’s a word) myself from all the conspiracy theories I had been taught at previous churches (didn’t you know the pulpit is a place to discuss conspiracy theories?) And try and find out what the different views of ‘eschatology’ (the doctrine of last things) were. To my surprise, I found the recent ‘pre-trib’ view (the one about a rapture and a 7 year period of the antichrist ruling… basically, the “Left Behind” novels) only came out in the last 100 years. Before that, Christians were either post-mils or a-mils (which, basically believe that the church is slowly becoming more and more victorious.) I obviously don’t have the space to discuss the differences here, only that I have really got a different view on the subject now. One where I’ve been trying to make the book of Revelation relevant to my life. All the books of the Bible have a practical application – something you need to ‘do’ or watch for, in order to continue in the race and receive the prize. Revelation is certainly no different. Only that, I’ve never been able to read it without trying to make predictions. I don’t think that’s the purpose of the book.
In truth, The Beast represents the world systems while the false prophet represents religiosity and false spirituality. The Anti-Christ almost seems to embody both, but represents man setting him/herself above God and claiming to be God. How much of this is in my own life? Do I trust The Beast – the world systems – more than I trust God? How much of my christianity is just religion? Just ceremony and lip service to God? How much of the anti-christ doctrine – that I am the center of the world, and the most important – is in my thinking? In my living? Do I wear the mark of the beast on my hands (what I do) and on my forehead (the way I think?)
Personally, I think Revelation is there to show us who our enemies are. We don’t wrestle against flesh and blood – we wrestle against the Beast, the false prophet and the antichrist. We wrestle against these spirits in ourselves, our churches, and throughout world history – evidenced by things like communism, nazism, fanatical and fundamentalistic religion, economic ruling etc. etc. It’s all there – spread across history. But you know what? Every rebellion against God will be put down and defeated by Christ, until he puts everything under His feet. And we defeat these things – and ultimately Satan – through the preaching of the Word of God (see Rev 19 and Rev 20.) THAT’s exciting.
My problem with the idea of the rapture is that most people have this attitude that “the world can go to hell, cause we’re out of here.” It’s like the church has this silent attitude that if things get worse – the better. Because that means Christ is coming soon. No wonder we don’t have much influence in the world like we used to – there are christians that actually WANT things to get worse. This is not the attitude of Christ and the Kingdom. We should be influencing our world, working against poverty and the Beast, fighting AGAINST the spirit of the anti-christ, exposing the false prophet in religion. Not secretely hoping evil would grow so that we can high-tail it out of here!
And God’s promise is that we WILL succeed. Micah 4 tells about ALL the nations coming to God, wanting to follow His ways. And that they’ll beat their swords into plowshares, no longer learn war and war against each other anymore. This is supposed to be the kingdom dream. This is supposed to be what we’re working towards – peace, joy and love to and for the world. Only the Gospel can do this. We should be busy working, not sitting around watching prophetic conferences and marveling at organisations that are trying to make a one world government.
Well, I still have lots to say but we can leave it there for now 🙂