Saturday, April 23, 2011

THE RAPTURE SCAM - ANN BARNHARDT

THE RAPTURE SCAM 
POSTED BY ANN BARNHARDT - APRIL 20, AD 2011 7:55 PM MST
Here's your theology lesson for the day, and I have the feeling that more than a few of you are not going to like this one. If there is one thing you should have figured out about me by now, it is that I DO NOT PULL PUNCHES. Looking at the events of the last few weeks and the sheer speed with which the national and global situation is being pushed towards the cliff's edge by the Obama regime, I want to get this on the record so that there is still time for people to sit and calmly think about it.

The entire notion of a "rapture" of Christians at the end of time is a dirty, satanic lie that imperils human souls.


1. Are these the "End Times"? I have no idea. And neither does anyone else. When it does happen, there will be no way that anyone will miss it. Don't worry about that. Here is what I do know. The western world is emerging from 60+ years of peace, progress and prosperity unparalleled in human history. This era from the end of WWII until the election of Obama is already being labeled by historians as the "Pax Americana". The Pax Americana is coming to an end. Does this necessarily imply the Second Coming is near? No. The last 2000 years have seen wall-to-wall wars, genocides, plagues and every imaginable type of human cruelty and suffering all over the world. Our little cocoon in time here in the U.S. and Canada since the mid-1940s has been off-the-charts in terms of peace, safety and human happiness. In other words, our happy, free lives have been the miniscule exception in the continuum of human history. This point CAN NOT be overemphasized. So, the rocky, frightening current events MUST be placed into that perspective. Having one's bank accounts seized by the IRS, or even being thrown in prison is pretty much a non-event compared to what happened in the Vendee genocide in France, or the rape of Nanking by the Japanese. I'll not go into detail here. Google either of those terms if you want to see what human beings are capable of doing to one another - but don't say I didn't warn you. My point is that terrible, terrible things have happened since 33 AD that surely felt like the "End Times" to the people that suffered through them, but they were not the End Times. They were just horrific episodes in human history. We must humbly accept that this very well could be the case now. Are we so full of ourselves that we think that even the slightest hint of suffering DEMANDS Christ's return? Uh, no. Let's get over ourselves, shall we?


2. The concept of the “Rapture” is less than 300 years old. The very first hint of anything even close to the concept of Rapture was put forth by a Puritan by the name of Increase Mather in Boston in the early 1700s. This idea was identified as a money-making scheme that was exciting and sensational to people and that would fill the pews and collection plates. Early drivers of the Rapture bandwagon included Darby, Moody, and Scofield who were the direct antecedents to Lindsey, LaHaye and Jenkins today. So, we have over 1700 years of Christian history and scholarship and Christ has exactly TWO comings – the first from 1 AD to 33 AD, and the second “in glory to judge the living and the dead” which is yet to occur. One. Two. Period. Then, all of a sudden, a shoe salesman (Moody) and a lawyer (Scofield) discover that there is a THIRD coming, between the two – a SECRET coming that only THEIR FOLLOWERS will benefit from. Do I need to go any further? Seriously. Because NO ONE had read the Bible up until Moody and Scofield. Nope. Not a soul. The first two people to ever read the Bible were a shoe salesman and a lawyer back east, who happened to discover an “obvious” doctrine that radically alters Christian theology, and purely as a side note would make them very, very rich men. YOU BETCHA. I’ll take a side of global warming with my Rapture, please.


3. Here is why this is so important. People who subscribe to the Rapture trap think that they will be spared any suffering in the End Times. All of the “good” people will be raptured away before the tribulation period, and all of the “bad” people will be “Left Behind” to suffer. Hmmm. So let me get this straight. Good people don’t suffer. So, your grandpa that was eaten alive by cancer – he must have deserved it. The people in northeast France who were raped and mutilated by the revolutionary mercenaries, they must have deserved it. The US soldiers that were eviscerated and died holding their guts in their arms on Omaha Beach – they must have deserved it. Not only did they deserve it, but their families deserved it, too. So when Jesus said, “Take up your cross and follow me,” He must have been CONFUSED, because Christians don’t suffer. As we can see, not only do Christians suffer, but they should EXPECT to suffer. Read the Beatitudes. Blessed are those who MOURN. Blessed are you when you are PERSECUTED. And on and on. There is an old quote: God has one Son without sin, but He has no sons without suffering.


4. What satan has done with this Rapture lie is completely break down Christians’ ability to bear and persevere in their faith through periods of suffering. What are all of the “Left Behind” fans going to do IF the End Times actually do begin - or ANY period of suffering - and they aren’t whisked away? Oh, there are several things they will think. They will think that God doesn’t love them and has abandoned them, and thus lose their faith. They will think that the Bible is untrue and untrustworthy (because the rapture is so clearly Biblical, and Hal Lindsey just CAN’T be wrong) and thus lose their faith. They will think that they must not be saved, and the fact that they are still on the earth is proof that they are already damned, and thus lose their faith. What is the common operator? That they will LOSE THEIR FAITH. People, that is satan’s sole objective. He will do anything and everything in his enormous power to get you, me and every possible person to LOSE THEIR FAITH. And of course, one of the most effective methods to get people to lose their faith is to pervert and twist the Bible and doctrine into traps like this. The raising up of false prophets also is a highly effective means of breaking peoples' spirits.


5. What this Rapture trap also does is cause Christian Soldiers to go AWOL from the fight. How many times have I heard people say, “Oh well, I don’t need to worry about any of this. The Lord is going to Rapture me home, and I won’t be around to see any of this happen. I just have to remember that none of this has anything to do with me.” This really gets my dander up. Look, every single one of us is going to be JUDGED. And what will we be judged upon? OUR ACTIONS AND DECISIONS IN THIS WORLD. Don’t tell me that the world doesn’t matter. The world and my interaction with it will be the foundation of my personal judgment before Christ. I am baptized and have confessed Christ. What do I do with that? Do I follow Christ’s command to go out into the world and make Him manifest (imperfectly!) in the world? Or do I take my salvation, smugly tuck it into my pocket and promptly retire to my room to engage in a life of self-absorbed self- satisfaction? “I’m going to heaven. I’m going to be Raptured. And to hell with the rest of you.” Literally. I think I remember St. Paul saying something about working out one’s salvation “in fear and trembling.” Pompous, selfrighteous disengagement is about as far from that as you can get. The Lord’s Prayer says, “Thy will be done ON EARTH as it is in heaven.” Are we going to cooperate in God’s will on earth, or just surrender that bit to satan? Satan is definitely trying to deceive you into surrendering the earth to him. The Rapture trap is a big tool on his belt for that.


So there you go. Whether we are leading up to just another period of human suffering, or to the Glorious Coming of Christ, we have to have our heads on straight and be steeled and prepared for battle, physically but ESPECIALLY spiritually. Either way, satan is going to be using the situation to rip as many of us from the arms of Christ as he possibly can. DON’T LET HIM DO IT. Cling to the Cross.




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