A Voice in the Wilderness

Re-Stating the Obvious #1
August 2, 2006, 2:00 am
Filed under: Sourced

I will start a new segment on this blog that will be called “Re-stating the Obvious” which sources from interviews that will make you just scream with “Preach It”s and “C’mon”s so without further ado. 

This week on Re-Stating the Obvious is an Interview with Tim LaHaye about the End-Time Prophecy and relating it to our generation. It is true that it has been stated from generations to generations, and indeed each sign is pointing to ours right now, but again, this may cause fear since this seems, or will be the end of all history and at last, our King will arrive to restore the Kingdom of God here on earth. But then again, it is also written that these are all birthpains of what is to come, and the end will not come until the Gospel of the Kingdom is proclaimed through the ends of the earth. And no greater time it is to do that since the world is just one click away. The article is sourced from Here

Are These the End Times?

The coauthor of the popular ‘Left Behind’ series explains why he believes Christ will return in our lifetimes.

By Brian BraikerNewsweekUpdated: 10:37 p.m. ET July 28, 2006July 28, 2006 – When Tim LaHaye talks, the faithful listen—by the millions. The conservative Protestant minister is the coauthor of the wildly popular apocalyptic “Left Behind” novels. The controversial books, which have sold more than 60 million copies, depict the biblical end of the world: the Christian eschatology of the upheaval that precedes the second coming of Jesus Christ, known also as “end times.” LaHaye recently spoke with NEWSWEEK’s Brian Braiker about why he believes the events currently unfolding in the
Middle East reflect biblical prophesy. Excerpts:

NEWSWEEK: How do you interpret what’s happening in the
Middle East? Are you seeing signs that these are the end of days?

Tim LaHaye:
Biblically speaking, the very nations that are mentioned in prophecy—and have been mentioned for 2,500 years as occupying the focus of the tension of the last days—are the very nations that are involved in the conflict right now. That may be one of the reasons there’s a sudden interest in bible prophecy because all of a sudden they realize end-time events could possibly take place and break forth right now.

But first-century Christians believed that the end of the world could come during their lifetime.
We call it the belief in the imminent return of Christ. It’s a motivational factor to serve the Lord and not let the world be so much with us that we don’t serve the Lord in the spiritual environment.

Couldn’t almost anything then be taken as a clue that any point in history might be the end times?
Down through the years that’s true. But never the accumulation of events as we have today. I have often said that no one knows the day nor the hour that Christ will come, but no generation has had so many signs of the times as our generation. We have more reason to believe that Christ could come in our lifetime than any generation before us.

You mentioned biblical prophecy. I’m not the student nor the scholar that you are—
Well, I’m not the journalist that you are.

[Laughs.] But my understanding is that current biblical scholarship reads some of the apocalyptic scenes in the Bible as metaphorically addressing events that were taking place as the Bible was being written.
These are usually liberal theologians that don’t believe the Bible literally.

So the Revelation should not be interpreted, for example, as a polemic against

That’s what they say. We believe that the Bible should be understood literally whenever possible. The next big event is the second coming of Christ. That’s preceded by a number of signs. And some of those signs could be stage-setting right now. They’re not going to come out of nowhere. For example, the Bible predicts when the antichrist comes and sits at his kingdom after the Rapture, he’s going to have one world economy and one world government and one world religion. We’re already moving rapidly in the direction of those very things.

Really? It seems we’re a ways off from one world religion.
That’s the least developed, but there are many particularly liberal theologians that just think that “Oh, if we could just get everybody together of all beliefs …” If you don’t have a strong belief system, you’re willing to compromise your beliefs with other religions.

You’ve written about the threat of secular humanism.
Part of the opposition to our position is from the secular humanists, but part of it is from the liberal people of theology that reject the Bible. I don’t see a great deal of difference between them. Their basic conclusions are often the same.
You’ve also written that “millions of unbelievers will be saved during the terrible time of the ‘Tribulation’.” What do you mean by that?
I take that from Revelation, chapter 7. One of the things that’s going to happen after the Tribulation, after the church is gone, there’ll be no one here to witness the faith in Christ. So the Lord raises up 144,000 Jewish witnesses and he names the tribes that they come from. The result of those witnesses is they reach a multitude of souls that receive Christ.

Does this explain how living right with God, in a Christian sense, would entail supporting the Israeli state right now?
I think those two things are related. Christians who take the Bible literally are generally supportive of Israel because God promises to bless those nations that are a blessing to
Israel and curse those nations that are not. And the history of
America bears that out.

But is it accurate to equate the state of Israel, which is a geopolitical entity, with all Jewish people around the world, who far outnumber the people actually in

No, that’s just a third of the number of Jews in the world.

So believers in the Rapture don’t necessarily foresee a damnation of the Jews then?
No, we don’t believe in the damnation of people in ethnic groups. We believe that’s an individual decision. Now, it often follows in people groups. Take the Muslims that we’ve been talking about. Everybody knows that they do not accept Jesus Christ as a means of salvation from sin. That’s the only way you can be saved, is to call on the name of the Lord. They’re not about to do that.

Neither are Jews.
Correct. But during the Tribulation period, there’ll be a sea change, and many Jews will accept Christ. Not all. Again, it’s an individual decision.

You recently donated a whole lot of money for a hockey rink at Liberty
University. If these are the end times, why make an investment like that?

[Laughs.] My strategy is that Canada and
Northern America produces the bulk of hockey players. We use the ice rink to get the hockey players to come to Liberty University where many of them are exposed to accept Christ. Many of them come because they are Christians. They are challenged to go into the ministry, and we’ve already had some of the guys in the earlier classes that graduated, and they’re going home to Canada to start churches.

Proselytism with a hockey puck?
Evangelism with a hockey puck” would be better.

But if the end times are indeed near, why would there be any point in working toward fostering peace?
Right now the Church of Jesus Christ is busy in the spiritual vein of trying to win people to Christ. We’re concerned about the salvation of individual souls. This whole thing has heightened the spirit of evangelism. Wars have always done that. But never have we had a war that is so specifically following the pattern of the scripture.

Michael Standaert is a critic of yours who has written recently in a blog that this belief in the end of the world in a big explosion of violence, reflects a “spiritual malaise” a “hopelessness in humanity” and that you’re “making money off of fear and hopelessness” in your “Left Behind” series. How do you respond to that?
I would say that he’s just betraying his poverty of faith. If he had faith in the Bible, faith in the future and Jesus Christ, he’d recognize that our passion is just like the theme song in our books: we don’t want anybody to be left behind. 


2 Comments so far
Leave a comment

This is such CRAP. Its sad to think so many people are still into the cult of “end times”..something that has been screamed about for 2,000 years. STOP focusing on end times and focus on what you can do to make the world around you a better place. There are hungry children (so give you $$ to them, not anti-abortion psychos), homeless people (give them shelter…not the psycho preacher), and an environmental crisis (in 10 yrs…it WILL all be over–from humans, not any fairy tell god).

And yes…SAVE your prayers, comments and emails for those who really need them.

Comment by Kevin

Though it is true that we are operating now in the “end times”, i dont totally agree with LaHaye’s concept of the end times. I dont believe that we will be raptured before Jesus’ returns.The pre-trib concept of the end times create “mediocre christians” because all we have to do is accept Jesus then we’ll go to heaven. i believe Jesus will return in this generation. We will undergo tribulation before He returns that’s why there such a thing as martyrs. We will see Him go down from the Throne Room to the Mt. of Olives and establish His Kingdom here on earth. I dont know about you, but i long to see that day when Jesus’ returns. I want to be a witness of His victory and triumph. That’s why even now, we are preparing for His return. Its not enough that we feed the poor or do mercy deeds. Our hearts have to be ready for His coming.

Comment by sarah

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