Jeramie Rinne: This past weekend the eschatological thriller Left Behind opened in theaters. It joins a flood of Christian movies this year including Exodus, Son of God, God’s Not Dead, Heaven Is for Real, andNoah. Okay, let’s not count Noah. Yet Left Behind stands out among this surge of Christian films, not just because it stars Nicholas Cage, and not just because it’s based on the wildly successful Left Behind novels by Tim LaHaye and Jerry Jenkins. Perhaps more than the other films, Left Behind captures believers’ imagination because it portrays a future, world-changing event: the secret rapture, that moment Jesus suddenly snatches up all Christians to himself years prior to his visible second coming. As producer and writer Paul LaLonde put it, “It’s a Bible-based movie, it’s a biblical story, it’s a true story—it just hasn’t happened yet.” As a result, it can cause us to wonder, What will it be like when all the Christians suddenly disappear? How close
Piper on tongues and prophecy
John Piper helpfully shares his personal experience and pastoral expertise concerning these gifts of the Holy Spirit: What Is Speaking in Tongues? What Is the Gift of Prophecy in the New Covenant?
Spurgeon on prophecy – may be?
CH Spurgeon a continuationist? His words from Sword and Trowel … Our personal pathway has been so frequently directed contrary to our own design and beyond our own conception by singularly powerful impulses, and irresistibly suggestive providences, that it were wanton wickedness for us to deride the doctrine that God occasionally grants to his servants a special and perceptible manifestation of his will for their guidance, over and above the strengthening energies of the Holy Spirit, and the sacred teaching of the inspired Word. We are not likely to adopt the peculiarities of the Quakers, but in this respect we are heartily agreed with them. It needs a deliberate and judicious reflection to distinguish between the actual and apparent in professedly preternatural intimations, and if opposed to Scripture and common sense, we must neither believe in them nor obey them. The precious gift of reason is not to be ignored; we are not to be drifted hither and thither by every wayward
Sam Storms – Are Prophets Foundational to the Church?
Sam Storms: The fact that Paul, in Ephesians 2:20, describes “apostles and prophets” as the foundation of the Church has led some to draw what I believe are unwarranted theological conclusions, specifically the idea that prophecy is a gift that was restricted to the first century and subsequently died out. Richard Gaffin, for example, says that in Ephesians 2:11-22 the church “is pictured as the construction project of God, the master architect-builder, underway in the period between the ascension and return of Christ (cf. 1:20-22; 4:8-10,13). In this church-house the apostles and prophets are the foundation, along with Christ as the ‘cornerstone’ (v. 20). In any construction project (ancient or modern), the foundation comes at the beginning and does not have to be relaid repeatedly (at least if the builder knows what he’s doing!). In terms of this dynamic model for the church, the apostles and prophets belong to the period of the foundation. In other words, by the divine architect’s design,
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Is Prophecy for Today?
The Proclamation Trust reposted a video from their 2010 Evangelical Ministry Assembly (EMA). This is a discussion/debate between Ian Hamilton (Cambridge Presbyterian Church; Cambridge, England) and Wayne Grudem (Phoenix Seminary, Arizona) on the topic of prophecy in the local church. A helpful resource on this topic is Are Miraculous Gifts for Today? Four Views (HT: James Grant)
Should We Look for Literal Fulfillments of OT Prophecy?
In our own day, there are those who look for future fulfillments of OT promises in a manner as literal as the original terms themselves. They expect to see things happening literally in the land of Israel, with a tribal division like Ezekiel describes. From the same prophet, they look for a rebuilding of the temple and reconstitution of the priesthood and sacrificial system. Or a battle between biblically identifiable enemies. Or Gentile nations on actual pilgrimmage to the present physical Jerusalem. Or a revival of the throne of David. There is a wide variety of such interpretations of prophecy held by many sincere Christian people. However, such expectations seem quite wide of the mark. Sometimes they simply make the mistake of taking literally what the Bible always intended figuratively even in its original form. But at other times they fail to see the living and ‘transformable’ quality of promises which were probably understood quite literally at the time of
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Out of Egypt I Called My Son
This is excellent from Kevin DeYoung: Now when they had departed, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream and said, “Rise, take the child and his mother, and flee to Egypt, and remain there until I tell you, for Herod is about to search for the child, to destroy him.” And he rose and took the child and his mother by night and departed to Egypt and remained there until the death of Herod. This was to fulfill what the Lord had spoken by the prophet, “Out of Egypt I called my son.” (Matthew 2:13-15) That last verse has caused lots of consternation. The Holy Family goes to Egypt, and this somehow fulfills Hosea’s reference to Israel’s exodus? As I mentioned last week, at first glance it looks like Matthew is connecting the dots by the slimmest of connections. Here’s what we read in Hosea 11:1-4: When Israel was a child, I loved him, and out
The Practical Value of Revelation
“…the churches are to read and reread the book in their assembly so that they may continually be reminded of God’s real, new world, which stands in opposition to the old, fallen system in which they presently live. Such a continual reminder will cause them to realize that their home is not in this old world but in the new world portrayed parabolically in the heavenly visions. Continued reading of the book will encourage genuine saints to realize that what they believe is not strange and odd, but truly normal from God’s perspective. They will not be discouraged by outside worldliness, including what has crept into the churches, which is always making godly standards appear odd and sinful values seem normal. John refers to true unbelievers in the book as ‘earth-dwellers’ because their ultimate home is on this transient earth. They cannot trust in anything except what their eyes see and their physical senses perceive; they are permanently earthbound, trusting
“Confide in me”
This sounds like a prophecy to me. Would that much that passes for prophecy today had this kind of biblical depth and gospel conviction! From Ray Ortland: “I must have your cheerful consent to the method of salvation which I have accomplished. I require the entire surrender of your immortal spirit, polluted and condemned as it is, into my hands, for all that it needs. No longer go about to establish a righteousness of your own by the deeds of the law; but rather feel that you have no righteousness, and receive my salvation, as it is testified to a dying world. This do, and you shall live. You shall have an interest in that great atonement which was made for all your sins; you shall be delivered from the curse of the law by that blood which not only answers every charge and covers every sin but effectually pleads on the behalf of those who from the heart renounce