Truth Matters… The truth will make you free (Jn 8:32)
2-9-2012 G.J. Harloff, Ph.D.
North Olmsted, Ohio 44070
This pamphlet examines the veracity of Bible teaching based on literal interpretation and spoof-texting. Spoof-texting is a teaching method that employs a word-search- approach to present lots of scriptures without time for thought. It is concluded that man-centric literal interpretation, including spoof-texting, leads directly to the different literal system discussed herein. This literal system is dispensationalism and is in wide spread use today.
MacArthur asks for Biblical proof (in GC 70-16 tape) that the Old Testament Israel is the church. This booklet is partly about illustrating this proof and attempts to show: (1) the Bible teaches that there is a continuation between spiritual (individual believing) Israel and the church, (2) the mystery in the New Testament is not that there is a church, but rather that Gentiles are fellow heirs of the same body and partakers of His promise in Christ, (3) believing Gentiles historically joined Israel in the Old Testament, (4) the “new man” in the New Testament is comprised of believing Jews and Gentiles, (5) those who believe in Christ (that Christ is the Messiah, died for our sins, and was resurrected to eternal life) are children of Abraham and all believers are part of the “olive tree” nourished by Christ, (6) the Old Testament prediction of the New Covenant “But this is the covenant which I will make with the house of Israel after those days,” declares the LORD, “I will put My law within them and on theirheart I will write it; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people .” (Jer 31:33) issynonymous with the New Covenant announced by Christ at His last supper, and (7) salvation in Christ is the same in both the Old and New Testaments because no one comes to the Father except through Christ.
This pamphlet compares the assumptions of a literalistic system with reformed theology and scriptural references are cited. Of course reformed theology and or the different literal system may both be wrong. The literal system rejects the continuation of the Old Testament believers into the New Testament church and instead assumes that Israel “temporarily” forfeited the privilege of being “the people of God”.
We are instructed by scripture to oppose incorrect teaching (Gal 2:11-14), and to search thescripture daily to test its true interpretation (Acts 17:11). We need to be in the Word daily to discern the truth with the help of the Holy Spirit. Continue reading →
Perhaps no subject broached by contemporary Bible prophecy teachers engenders more speculation and less sound Biblical exegesis than does the subject of Antichrist. This is certainly due to the mysterious nature of the subject itself, as well as to the fact that no other aspect of Bible prophecy lends itself so nicely to speculation regarding the identification of one specific individual who will become the very personification of evil and the archenemy of Jesus Christ and his gospel.
“Pin the tail” on the Antichrist is not merely an evangelical fascination. Indeed, such speculation has gone on almost from the beginning of Christianity. Irenaeus (130-200) argued that Antichrist would be a Jewish born, satanically inspired, usurper of God’s true glory, who would appear in the Jerusalem temple in connection with an end-times great apostasy. (1) The Protestant Reformers, of course, universally identified the papacy with the Antichrist, the Apology of the Augsburg Confession (1540) stating that “the papacy will also be a part of the kingdom of Antichrist if it maintains that human rites justify (XV.18).” The Westminster Confession (1647) contends that the Pope is “that antichrist, that man of sin, and son of perdition, that exalteth himself in the church against Christ, and all that is called God (XXV.6).” Rome, not to be outdone, has returned the favor, contending that antichristic Protestant “heresies have swept down from the North, where Calvin, Wycliffe, Luther and legions of Protestants are ravaging the flock of Christ.” (2)
But there is no doubt that much of contemporary speculation has taken the concept of identifying the Antichrist to new extremes. One of my favorite possessions is a booklet passed on to me by my grandmother, entitled The Time of Jacob’s Trouble (1939), wherein the author attempts to demonstrate that the revived Germany under Hitler in the pre-World War II years is the supposed last-days ten-nation confederacy predicted in Revelation 13. Of course, the author very deftly demonstrates how Mussolini is the false prophet and how Italian imperialism in Ethiopia is proof that Rome is the great harlot of Revelation 18 and compatriot of the German beast. I can still remember the fear instilled in me as a child, when I heard, one preacher declare that Antichrist was then living somewhere in the Middle East, probably still a child playing stickball in some crowded dusty street, awaiting the day when he would be possessed by the devil and allowed to wreck havoc on the world after the rapture. Continue reading →
Speculation regarding antichrist, different antichrists and the Antichrist has always been rife. Discussion regarding the identity of the Antichrist has certainly not been limited to Christian circles, but is also the topic of countless conversations among non-believers throughout much of the world. A plethora of movies, books and even TV and computer games have been produced, which have portrayed the Antichrist in many different guises. It is a topic which has been the catalyst for many to employ overly-dramatized imagery, much poetic license and vivid imaginations.
The virtual or internet realm has brought an added dimension to the world’s fascination with Antichrist, some even believing that it will be through the medium of the internet that Antichrist will gain eventual control of our armies, finances, natural resources and the minds of people. Much of this has served, in large degree, to add even more speculation and undeserved mystery to the prophesied events surrounding the coming Antichrist. Even to the extent that the personality of Antichrist has been glorified and portrayed as being “an interesting and not really such a bad guy”, or simply someone who will be unfairly persecuted or demonized by Christians for their own ideals.
More often than not, popular secular adaptation of perceived coming events, portrays Antichrist as a perfect-looking Continue reading →
This is a subject which has once again risen to the forefront of discussions between Christians and professing Christians today, particularly since the modern Charismatic Pentecostal movement has gained much international popularity. Speaking in tongues has become a powerful tool used by some televangelists and so-called preachers in mega-churches, those for whom I find the tag “rock star evangelists” particularly descriptive, to deceive those congregants who lack discernment.
I recently heard one of the charismatic preachers at the forefront of the movement in our country, accuse those in his congregation who do not speak in tongues, of being simply and willfully ignorant. Subsequently, he has instituted classes where those, who have not been able to overcome their ignorance of the spiritual gift of tongues, to learn the skill. This, of course, is an addition to the already existing and well attended schools of prophecy and healing at his church, where for a tidy sum, one can learn to channel the Holy Spirit and do the work expected by God of every devoted Christian. I suppose none of this is new or unexpected. I mention it simply to sketch part of the reason for placing this article.
It is important for the Christian to determine the truth regarding this matter, particularly those who do not necessarily consult Scripture to test what is being fed to them from the Charismatic pulpit. Often, for those who are being deceived by the over-dressed, eloquent and financially successful businessmen who moonlight as Charismatic preachers, it is unthinkable that what is being taught as Biblical truth by their heroes, can be perceived as a lie or not from God. Continue reading →