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I Corinthians 15:51-57 But let me tell you something wonderful, a mystery I’ll probably never fully understand. We’re not all going to die—but we are all going to be changed. You hear a blast to end all blasts from a trumpet, and in the time that you look up and blink your eyes—it’s over. On signal from that trumpet from heaven, the dead will be up and out of their graves, beyond the reach of death, never to die again. At the same moment and in the same way, we’ll all be changed. In the resurrection scheme of things, this has to happen: everything perishable taken off the shelves and replaced by the imperishable, this mortal replaced by the immortal.There is no sure time frame for this in the New Testament so there are many different opinions about the date. But to hear a lot of modern preachers you’d think it could be tomorrow morning.
No time frame is given
Perhaps so. But that is not what is bothering me. I see folks using the rapture as a great escape. As in “I don’t need to worry about my creeping debt limit – at the rapture I leave all my bills behind.” Another version is “I am satisfied with what I am doing for God – maybe not much – but I don’t fear the future as I’ll be raptured.”
But if this miraculous escape doesn’t happen …. then the bills and the problems are still there, right? This is not life fulfilling, but life avoidance.
Obedience is not Avoidance
Jesus did not tell us to sit around on our assumptions but to get to work on His Kingdom: make disciples of all nations, preach the word, heal the sick, cast out demons, and even raise the dead, worship, praise, comfort, visit prisoners, and care for parents. Honor – that’s a reference to money – your parents and pray for your leadership. The Rapture theory gives some an excuse for not fulfilling their responsibilities from everything to not voting to not going to church.
Not one word from God about being “at ease” or waiting it out.
Buddhism is about waiting it out
What bothers me about all this is – not just that the scripture does not tell us specifically when this will be – but that it is a reflection of Buddhist teaching.
Buddhism is not really a religion although it is treated as such; it is a way of life. It focuses on gaining peace in the inner man. Buddhists are societal drop outs for the most part. They avoid conflict, stay to themselves, devote time to multiple prayers, fasting and staying away from trouble. It gives me great joy to see the Dalai Lama (Chief Buddhist Priest) in this world never backing down to the Chinese about stealing Tibet. Good. It is a proactive work for a non-proactive group.
The Communist Chinese government attacked Buddhism originally as a religion. In the past few years they changed their minds and encouraged it because Buddhists go along with the communist dictatorship.
Evil is challenged, not endured
But Jesus always put us in the position for challenging evil wherever we found it. Have you seen any Christians turning over money-changing tables recently? a metaphor for dealing with the corrupt monetary system. Well a few do.
It is infecting American society at a time when elitism and entitlements are defining who we are. Jesus Himself did not take the easy way out. And we are called to be and do in this world as He was. “As my father has sent me, so send I you.”
More than anything else, Christians are “sent” people, into society, the world, and the dark places to bring light.
#rapture #church #spiritualwarfare #Buddhism
The late Corrie Ten Boom writes of her watchmaker-father who traveled regularly to Amsterdam to record the official timepiece of Holland and then return home to reset, correctly, all the clocks in his shop. On one such trip he inquired of the clock managers in Amsterdam how they verified the time. They said they always set their clocks by checking a little known watchmaker named Ten Boom who lived in a little town in the south. Naturally Mr. Ten Boom discontinued his trips to Amsterdam since he was setting their clocks.
How do you establish what is true
But what should they do? They could contact the Greenwich, England office which sets a standard for time by reference to a number of atomic clock organizations. That should do it. But let us speculate that a sunspot caused that electronic clock to lose a quarter of a second; then all three clocks would be wrong. All the official clocks in the world would be wrong as well.
I am going somewhere with this so stick with me. This is called circular reasoning because each individual is using another to set the standard. If we want truth, we must go outside ourselves to find it – to an eternal reference point untainted by error. But where is that?
Truth is outside
I have a Buddhist-Thai friend who pays no attention to her religion. She has no interest in Christianity or any other religion, simply saying that she will be in heaven because she knows she will be in heaven. Her family is Thai and she is Thai and that’s all she needs to know. But her reasoning about life (and I might add death) is circular. She allows others who may or may not know anything outside of themselves set her beliefs. Because Thai people have told her she is going to heaven that seems to be all she knows or cares to know. But of what value is that?
Absolute truth exists
Like the circular verification of the watchmakers there is no absolute reference point outside themselves. Truth is just what someone thinks and that can easily be wrong. The Chinese believe that the sheer numbers of people who believe something makes it true. Now try that with a group of people. Let’s say a small town of all black people believes, as a unit, that they are all female. How can we do that? It is anti-science. Think of Galileo here. Do we jail people for agreeing with science? How can anyone say they are a different gender when science, i.e. DNA, tells the story for all the billions of souls on the planet.
Transgender is antiscience
Enter God. He is outside of everything. He knows. He alone can tell you if the watch of your life is set wrong, who you are and where you are going. There is no one as miserable as a person who allows other people to dictate who they are. This is called determinism which never allows you to change or grow.
Secular theorists bristle over the Judeo-Christian absolutes of a God and His Word. After all if there are absolutes and a God who made them then Man might just face a day of accountability.
Without those absolutes, individuals have a free rein of personal anarchy. The opposite of absolutes is the folly of allowing human kind to determine truth while knowing intrinsically that humans are flawed. To say that reality is not reality is the true definition of neuroses.
I worked in a juvenile prison and the most common thing I heard was, “That kid has a record.” Of course he did. They all did.
So I told the students, I don’t care what your record is. I want you to learn what is true about the good and potential in you, and how your life can be ruled. If you don’t rule yourself, the State will do it for you and that is a life of misery. Believing that your opinion is reality makes as much sense as planning a dental appointment for the year 2013. It won’t happen; it can’t happen. Some of them heard me.
There are young people today who have this notion that they are another gender. This is not necessary. God knows who and what you are, so consult Him.
This is true for everyone. God can and will tell you who you are, where you are going and what you can do with your life. You may find someone who can help you along this line, but if not you are allowing people who don’t know the truth set the time of your life. And it may be wrong.
My own standard is the Holy Bible. I include all secular information which verifies God’s. It is my rock of belief. I am never disappointed.