Prophecy Paradox, the Case for a First Century End Time
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Prophecy Time Warp
Telescopic Time Compression
& Dual Fulfillment
How does the First Century End
Time get moved thousands of years into our future?
Why is Prophecy Time Warped?
In our attempt to place the second coming of our Lord in OUR future, rather than the generation of the Apostles, are we creatively interpreting the Bible to suit our own preference? Are we using interpretation to add and take away words so the apparent intent of imminent return is twisted to be thousands of years in the future, simply because that is our belief?
Most Christians believe Christ is coming soon, physically and visible to all. Few have considered the possibility that He has already returned. But Jesus told His disciples that He would return in their generation. This apparent contradiction is often explained by picking a meaning for "generation" that is not quite what we expect.
For example, suppose Jesus meant the entire Jewish race, or perhaps he meant the modern nation of Israel. This would clear up the problem all right, but can we feel comfortable taking such liberties with scripture? How do we know He has not already returned unless a genuine search of history is made?
New evidence is turning up that Jesus did indeed return for His elect, in power and glory during the first century. But many Christians are so used to hearing and believing that "Christ is coming again" that is seems heretical to suggest otherwise.
In our attempt to place the second coming of our Lord in OUR future, rather than the generation of the Apostles, are we creatively altering the Bible to suit our own preference? Here are some other ways used to creatively alter the intended meaning of prophecy to predict the imminent return of the Lord in OUR generation, rather than in the generation of the Apostles.
Popular Methods of Interpreting Time Warps into Prophecy:
I. Altering Translations
II. Telescopic Time Compression
III. Dual Fulfillment
IV. Creative Prophecy Through Interpretation
I. Altering TranslationsMany words in Hebrew and Greek mean one thing when translated from a first century perspective, but mean something quite different from a modern viewpoint. This opens up the possibility of creative Christianity to make Scripture accommodate our design for a future "end time." Examples:
II. Telescopic Time Compression (the Time Gap Theory)In sequential prophetic events, a "time gap" is creatively inserted to project end time events into OUR future. We are told the prophet looks into the future and sees a series of prophetic events which appear to him as events occurring in immediate succession. The vast separation of time between events is explained like this. It would be as if we are looking at several successive mountain peaks with a telescope. Each successive peak is a little higher and a little farther away. The person with the telescope sees the successive peaks all together, when in fact they are separated by great distances because the valleys which separate them cannot be seen. The mountain peaks are prophetic events. The valleys are prophetic gaps which are large time periods between the prophetic events.. Examples:
III. Dual FulfillmentAlthough a prophecy is known to have been fulfilled in the past, the theory of dual fulfillment provides the prophecy can be fulfilled again in the distant future. Examples:
IV. Creative Prophecy Through InterpretationWhen OUR view of end time prophecy is not entirely described by the Bible, we are tempted to creatively fill in details to fit OUR design for a future tribulation and millennium. For example:
Therefore, it becomes possible to postulate that Jesus was predicting two separate events. Mt.16:27,28 is commonly explained as referring to the transfiguration (Mt.17) which occurred while the Apostles were alive. Then Mt.24:30 may be creatively altered to mean a second coming in OUR generation.
A Christian Dilemma: time statements: Jesus taught that he would return a second time in the first century. Consequently, His disciples believed and preached He would return again in their generation. Although the first Christians were not informed of the day and hour of the Lord's return, Jesus provided a time frame for His second coming. See A Christian Dilemma: time statements for a partial list of these time statements.
A Visible Second Coming: This list of New Testament verses shows consistent biblical intent that first century Christians would live to see both a literal and visible return of Christ to gather His elect.
PROPHECY PARADOX: The Case for a First Century End Time. Read the historic fulfillment of prophecy.
The Seven Year Tribulation Theory: True or False? A reevaluation of the Seven Year Tribulation Theory: Numerous difficulties pose questions to its credibility.
Bible Prophecy: Faulty Assumptions Faulty assumptions distort accurate assessment of Bible prophecy. Have you made any faulty assumptions? Check out this list!
Tough Questions for Tough Christians If Jesus preached He would return a second time in the first century, perhaps we should consider He was right.
Link to other preterist pages The Preterist Archive
PROPHECY PARADOX: The Case for a First Century End Time by L. Schuldt can be ordered through AMAZON.COM or through the publisher. This is the second revised edition of A.D. 79, a Prophecy Paradox.