1. The Rapturistas are all atwitter. Why? Well, the Dave Hunt, Left Behind, insert-your-favorite-Rapturista guru here’s wet dream is coming true! Syria…backed by Russia, China and Iran…is in the headlines! Jesus is coming back soon! We all know the bible says that Israel will be attacked from the north by Russia, China, Iran, etc. through Syria and that God will strike them all down in a glorious display of his power…or so one sect’s mythology goes. However, I thought 0bama is the Anti-Christ? Why is he opposing Russia and China? Hmm, that’s a tough one.
Seems a lock, no? The Anti-Christ and Armageddon are right around the corner…surely you see this? If you don’t, you aren’t truly saved and you are not part of God’s true remnant that hears special from the Holy Spirit. It’s all about your proper interpretation of Revelation and the End Times. If this is not an emphasis for you, if you don’t “see” the truth…you are on the wrong team. Repent now ye heathen! Come on board, the train is leaving the station! Turn or burn! Don’t get “left behind!”
Ya, I’ve seen this movie before…grew up in this sect’s over-emphasis of End Times and I’ve watched similar Millerites and Harold Campings and Chuck Smith’s make prediction after prediction after prediction…that don’t come true. Here’s a solid prediction: If Pat Robertson, Chuck Smith, Harold Camping, Dave Hunt, insert-your-Rapturista guru here says it….it’s not going to happen. They are a solid Contrarian indicator. You can take the opposite of their predictions to the bank.
In fact, I’ll give any of my Rapturista friends 100 to 1 odds that Syria will blow over and that the end is not nigh…unless your personal End Times comes in the meantime due to health failure, auto accident etc. I guess I can’t really lose that bet…if Syria is the big one and the Rapture occurs…I won’t have to pay off your bet…and if it blows over, well, you’ll owe me some dough
My point in poking some sarcastic fun at this issue? Use your brains people. Your Gurus have such a shoddy track record in this area that if they were major league baseball players, they’d be batting zero and worthless. The fact is Revelation is extremely non-specific and allegorical and making such a Subjective issue like End Times such a major emphasis in your life is a waste of time and seems so counter-productive to other much clearer issues (if you take the bible seriously) like helping the poor and needy, loving your neighbor, caring for your family and working on the Great Commission etc. So much money, time and zealotry wasted on a nebulous non-issue. Guess what, you’ll face your own End Times and soon (relative to time and history)…you are but a vapor, I can guarantee that prophecy. So, instead of needlessly worrying about Syria, hug your kids today, extend some grace and mercy to your spouse and make an intentional effort to enjoy the little time we have left in this existence….and quit wasting your time and money on Rapture Gurus who no more hear from God than Dion Warwick.
2. There will be no “One World Government” and there will be no “One World Religion”. Man is ungovernable and there will never be Consensus on philosophy and religion.
What we will continue to see is some sort of Global Cooperation regarding money and a Monetary System. Money, Trade, Commerce…those are the only things man and Governments are forced into cooperation. Money is Power. Money is the glue that holds Societies and Cultural Constructs together. In fact, if you want to see monumental chaos and anarchy…just facilitate a money-crisis where people can’t buy and sell and can’t make transactions and get food, water, gasoline, etc.
The United States FED (Federal Reserve) is the defacto World Central Bank at the moment. The whole world is waiting and watching the US FED’s every move, every hint, every policy decision. When Ben Bernanke farts, the entire Financial World and World Governments take notice…and usually venture a guess as to what it means.
The Macro-Economy will continue to slog along…as long as the US FED (and subsequently other World Central Banks) continue to juice the System with easy money, loose credit and continue to QE back-stop all sorts of “assets”. If the FED blinks, it’s game over, the easy-money orgy will collapse and there will be blood in the streets…again.
What will eventually happen is that the Moral Hazard of Creditism and Central Bank Voodoo will eventually collapse the entire monetary System as Nation States, Big Corps, Big Banks etc continue to cheat and “sound money” is obliterated in favor of “work the System better than the other guy”.
When the Moral Hazard of our current Economic System rots out the last vestige of faith in fair-play and fair money…the ongoing Currency Wars and “tallest midget in the room” will implode on itself in a rather spectacular fashion. The Game will be up. It’ll be really really scary. Folks will freak. Then the World Central Bank scheme will be implemented and the conspiracy theorists wet dream “One World” or “New World Order” will come to life…but not in the predicted form…it will be purely a monetary agreement that resets the Global Monetary System to some sort of less-corrupt schema where one Nation-State’s Bank doesn’t have so much power and advantage over the rest of the World.
3. My solution to the Middle East issues: Arm both sides and let them all kill each other. There is nothing more destabilizing to a potential Caliphate than a bunch of Civil Wars. Don’t underestimate the power and shrewdness of our CIA. A Region that hates us…in chaos…is much better than a Region that hates us…in unity and in peace and in economic prosperity.
4. Christians* who appeal to “child-like faith” and eschewing logic…make their philosophical argument from an appeal to logic based on their interpretation of the bible. The irony is thick. “Doctrine” and “Theology” are philosophical argument, they are philosophically constructed positions…and appeals to logic and an authority. There is no way to separate “this is what the bible says!” from philosophical logic. It is like trying to separate math from determining the age of Jesus at his death and resurrection and the length of his public ministry. Conclusions based upon the data are up for debate…the data and the raw logic to observe the data is indisputable.
5. I have some rather hilarious conversations with Selective Fundamentalists. This recent convo struck me as noteworthy. It went something like this:
Fundy: “I’m worried about you, you’ve lost your faith in God.”
Me: “I believe in God, I just don’t think God is necessarily what you say he is. In fact, ‘he’ is probably anthropomorphic metaphor…I’m not sure ‘God’ has a penis or sits on a throne with a butt and with legs and feet etc. I think God is more likely an essence, the all-in-all, the glue that holds the Universe together.”
Fundy: “Heresy! We are made in God’s likeness, the bible says so!”
Me: “Hmm, so you believe God has a penis? God has legs and a butt and sits on a throne, literally? Do you believe God is sitting on a literal throne, or is God everywhere, in everything? The bible seems to assert God is in all things and is omnipresent, etc.”
Fundy: “Well….well, I don’t know.”
Me: “But, I thought you said ‘the bible says so!’ etc and that you do know? I would assert that we really don’t know much about God and we don’t know much about what happens next.”
Fundy: “Yes, we do. The bible says that if you don’t believe in Jesus you will die and go to hell.”
Me: “I believe in God and I believe in Jesus, I think. I figure there is a possibility God exists and there seems to be a decent argument for a historical Jesus and innately, after hearing the Gospel message, I think Jesus is the Messiah, but I can’t prove it empirically. I don’t think, however, that the bible is inerrant and infallible etc., as there is too much evidence to the contrary…from within the bible itself. I think that ‘this is what the bible says!’ is really stating that your opinion of what the bible says or a Guru’s or Church’s opinion of what the bible says is your bible and your truth…and not necessarily faith in God. As to the after-life, I have no clue what happens. The bible seems to present some competing narratives that don’t give us a clear picture of what really happens when we die. It seems there are two possibilities: We cease to exist, no consciousness….or our consciousness continues on in some form after our physical bodies die and decompose etc.”
Fundy: “No! The bible says you will be resurrected and live on in your body and you will either go to heaven or hell, depending on whether or not you believe in Jesus!”
Me: “Hmm. I’m not so sure about that. How do you know?”
Fundy: “Well. Elijah and Moses appeared to the Apostles with Jesus in the New Testament and the Apostles knew who they were so they looked like themselves.”
Me: “Hmm, really? Let’s think about this for a second. You’re telling me that Peter knew what Moses and Elijah looked like? Even though they were long dead (or assimilated) many years before Peter was born? Did Peter have a picture of Moses and Elijah? How would Peter know what they were supposed to look like? Were there picture bibles in Peter’s day?”
Fundy: “Well, God made it known to Peter that that’s who they were.”
Me: “Well, that’s quite a different meaning now, isn’t it? Peter could have no clue what Moses and Elijah looked liked. For all we know, God made it known to Peter…and Moses and Elijah could have looked like anyone, in fact they could have been beams of light or pretty much anything. The bible simply doesn’t say and you are speculating.”
Fundy: “Well, we live on in our bodies, like Jesus…and Moses and Elijah had their bodies.”
Me: “Really? OK, then where was Moses’s body at the time of the appearance on the Mount of Transfiguration? If your position is correct, then Moses was already resurrected and his body was no longer in the ground. Is Moses’s body in the ground this moment or did he get resurrected for the appearance on the Mount of Transfiguration and then un-ressurrected when it was over and his body went back into the ground waiting for the Day of the Dead?”
Fundy: “Well, uh, umm…”
Me: “You have a loophole with Elijah, as the bible narrative says he didn’t die a natural death but was assimilated up to heaven. But, Moses is much more difficult to resolve. If your position is correct…that certainly we have our old bodies in the next life…then Moses must’ve had some temporary body on the Mount of Transfiguration…or we just don’t know as the bible seems to present a contradiction and anomaly here. You assume that Jesus’s body is no longer in the grave…but you would assume that Moses’s body is in the grave as the Day of the Dead, the Day of Judgment hasn’t happened yet.”
Fundy: “Well, uh, umm.. well, we get a new body.”
Me: “That sounds like Chuck Smith’s position, which may or may not be true, I dunno for sure. The Gnostics seem to believe such asserting that the real things are spirit and spiritual and that the flesh is corrupt etc. and dies off and the ‘real me’ as Chuck Smith asserts, is spirit, and as such the ‘good’ lives on and we get some sort of spirit-body that isn’t our old flesh. Again, I don’t know for sure, but clearly there’s a problem with the bible’s narrative of Moses on the Mount of Transfiguration and your original position that we get our old bodies in the next life.”
Fundy: “Well, I disagree, I’m just going to pray for you. Even the devil believes in God and if you don’t believe in your heart that Jesus is God’s son then you’re going to hell. You need to have child-like faith and not focus so much on all the details.”
Me: “Hmm, I don’t think the devil is a real entity, more of a metaphor. And, I don’t think that if the devil is a real singular being…that it was his belief or lack of belief in God that got him damned…more his rebellion against God. Personally, if God is real, I have no beef with him and I don’t want to rebel against him and I don’t want to be God, I’m perfectly content being a created being and acknowledging and assenting to his Godness and Deity.”
Fundy: “You don’t believe there’s a devil? I’m so concerned for you! You’re going to hell.”
Me: “Hmm, that’s an interesting concern. I thought you said I don’t need to focus on details? Does someone have to believe in a literal devil to be officially saved in your opinion? That seems to be adding to the Gospel message, no? In fact, what is your check-list that I must have to be officially saved? I thought you said I merely had to have child-like faith and believe in Jesus as God?”
Fundy: “Uggh, I’m done with you. I’m just going to pray that you repent so you don’t go to hell.”
Me: “Umm, OK. I’m going to continue to seek God and truth wherever it leads. Faith is not the absence of doubt…and most of my doubts are in your Group’s interpretation of ‘this is what the bible says!’ vs. doubts that God ‘is’ and that he is good and is love etc.”
6. Supposedly there’s some BIG Calvary Chapel news coming down soon…really big according to a solid guru on the subject. We’ll see what happens and we’ll link it when it comes down.
7. My Boise State Broncos looked terrible the other night. We’ve been spoiled with excellence for quite awhile now. In an alternate universe, my Los Angeles Dodgers look unbeatable. I guess if you spend enough money, you can buy a winning team after all. If the correlation holds true…my San Diego Chargers should be really good this year…I think the correlation isn’t true.
8. Some Fundy bakery wouldn’t sell a cake to a couple of Lesbians…and now the bakery is out of business. The Christians* in Selective Fundy Land are freaking out. The Lesbians weren’t too happy about it and appealed to Caesar. I’ve got a question: Why sell cakes to divorcees, adulterers, fornicators, liars, gluttons, child abusers etc…but not a couple of Lesbians? If Jesus is real, I think he’d sell them the cake…and probably turn some water into wine and drink it with them.