Sunday, April 13, 2014
When we were last together, I promised that we would delve into to the history that provided the modern end-time doctrine of all mainline denominations – the one you hear on radio and television programs. While it will take more than one blog, I will begin today, while also explaining one of the enigmas in the doctrine.
Have you ever heard of Francisco de Ribera, John Darby, Margaret MacDonald, or Cyrus Scofield? If not, I will acquaint you with these players, who provided the script for the modern end-time doctrine that many of you have embraced without question, because your spiritual leadership has told you that this doctrine is the truth.
In 1909, Cyrus Scofield published a reference Bible with his personal end-time philosophy, at the prestigious Oxford University Press in London. He gleaned his modernistic ideas from the writings of the other three people mentioned above, professing that most of the visions in the Revelation had not come to pass. Historians refute this claim. His commentary interpreted Bible prophecy and set up a strategic outline for future events to come to pass.
Why did the seminaries and Bible school teachers in America quickly embrace and adopt into their curriculum, his fanciful, scripturally unfounded interpretations of Bible prophecy? Did they know anything about the personal life of this self-proclaimed prophet of the future? Did he have any Christian fruits in his lifestyle, or did the Bible scholars of the 20th century even bother to find out?
They did not bother to find out, they simply swallowed his newfangled ideas without question. I was perplexed at their lack of inquiry into Mr. Scofield’s character, before they adopted his eschatology. But to have a new and bright idea with which to capture the attention of their waning national flock, probably was one reason the scholars grasped hold of a doctrine that could not be supported by biblical historians, but was mysteriously sensational enough to captivate the interest of their followers.
ANTICHRIST – An enigma
Who is the Antichrist? Do you know? Since the Scofield Reference Bible purported there is coming an evil person called the Antichrist, who will rule the world someday, thousands of books have been written on this subject, and movies with endless speculations? Did you know that new translations of the Bible have altered portions of scripture to prove this theory? Probably not…but they have.
The Apostle Peter said that no prophecy of scripture is of any private interpretation, for prophecy never came by the will of man, but holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Spirit…II Peter 1:20-21. So why do men insist on attempting to interpret Bible prophecy, if prophecy is understood in its fulfillment so we will believe, according to Jesus? John 14:29
In the 1930’s during Benito Mussolini’s totalitarian reign in Italy, a self-appointed cadre of pastors from America, took a long journey to personally meet with him? Why would they do such a thing? This proud group of Bible prophecy interpreters, went there to inform this tyrant that he was the Antichrist of the book of Revelation. Where in the book of Revelation does it call anyone the Antichrist? Apparently these scholars had it all figured out – were they right?
A major danger in interpreting prophecy of scripture – it will mislead the saints of God to follow another voice. Stay tuned…
God’s sheep question the doctrines of men…sheeple follow without question…