Debates (Open)

   
Replies: (page   1   2   3   4   5   6   7   8   9   10   11)
(Guest) 09/05/2016 22:28
Mini,
If it is any consolation to you at all, I too, am very "dismayed" at my own comments. But the Bible says it as it is. When we consider the population of the world currently is around 7 billion, the figure of 16 million, by your estimation is somewhat paltry in the extreme, to say the very least-hardly constitutes "a truly great end times harvest"?
If it were not for God's free sovereign electing grace alone, could any of us be saved? Are we not all criminals, that deserve eternal damnation? The 16 million Jews you refer to (if it is that number) will be converted by God in Christ when His "Spirit of grace" is poured upon "the inhabitants of Jerusalem" Zechariah 12.10. The remnant of "all Israel", how large that number is, God only knows. It may be significantly less than 16 million at the end time; if "all Israel" means only the remnant of the twelve tribes, actually present in Israel at the Lord Jesus's return. Is this not why Christians (like me) support Aliyah?
For the sake of my fellow man, I would far rather be a universalist. The only problem is, the Bible unequivocally teaches against it.
Bm
Mini 10/05/2016 15:06
BM, you are a bit “glass-half-empty”! The angels rejoice over one sinner who repents! The 16million figure is a ballpark figure useful as somewhere to start. That end time conversion of the Jews is remarkable because it happens at the worst possible time, spiritually speaking and shows the working of the Holy Spirit and how “The Word of God is not bound”. I think you may be suffering from the kind of depression that only Christians can suffer from, and I think I probably am too. We should both be “looking off to Jesus” and only viewing the present darkness out of the corner of our eyes, so to speak. There is never a 100% conversion rate in any revival, but that is not really our problem. I know more about the Welsh revival than the Lewis one, and a distant relative of mine was one of the Church leaders involved. But these things have repercussions, and one of the reasons why there are some pretty extraordinary, if small, churches in Wales may be one of them. As for China, the “stony ground” does not really apply because that refers to those who receive the Word then persecution comes and they wither away. The Chinese converts are already in a state of persecution and know what they are getting into. The patterns of church growth in the early days of the Roman persecutions were: church grows in peace, becomes fashionable, attracts hangers-on, becomes fat and complacent; wave of persecution cuts churches down to the bone; phenomenal church growth during extreme persecution with church becoming filled with high calibre all-out followers of Jesus. This also happened in the USSR. I hate to say this, and I think in the back of all our minds we all know: suffering and persecution are a pre-requisite for a big harvest of souls. I am beginning to think that there will be a huge end time harvest, or a crescendo if you like, of souls being saved. “And such as do wickedly against the covenant shall he corrupt by flatteries: but the people that do know their God shall be strong, and do exploits. And they that understand among the people shall instruct many: yet they shall fall by the sword, and by flame, by captivity, and by spoil, many days. Now when they shall fall, they shall be holpen with a little help: but many shall cleave to them with flatteries. And some of them of understanding shall fall, to try them, and to purge, and to make them white, even to the time of the end: because it is yet for a time appointed.” Dan 11: 32-35. I believe this is the reality we will be facing: many will be saved but it will be in suffering and there will be “informers” within our number. I believe from various passages, that everything that will happen has to do with people being saved. That everything hinges on God waiting for all His stragglers to come in before calling an end to the Age. That’s what it’s all for: we have to put up with all this horror for the “sake of the elect”. It is worth noting that evangelism and church growth in China seems to be based on the one-by-one principle, rather than mass rallies which we have enjoyed in the West. It is also interesting how the current state of the Chinese church is the result of the small but unbelievably sacrificial work of Hudson Taylor and the little group of people who joined with him in China. (Some went out from Scotland I believe) I think of the woman who was engaged to a man she was so in love with, yet she left him in obedience to God. That little group of people could have had no idea, not in their wildest dreams, either of what a small window of opportunity God thrust them into, or of the quantity or the quality of Chinese Christianity which was born out of their sacrifice and obedience.
Editor 11/05/2016 09:47
Just a quick note (I'm rushing). It is helpful for the sake of those reading these list to insert paragraph breaks when making longish responses.

Regarding 'all Israel being saved' I would suggest that the 'all' is ambiguous (although not so in the mind of God who knows these things).
In the English language 'All' can can mean "All without exception" or (alternatively) "All without distinction". These are two different scenarios.

All who came out of Egypt were not saved and it is possible that all (16 million) Jews will be saved. The priniciple of a 'remnant' runs right through Scripture.

Regarding revival coming out of persecution, I think we can already see persecution being used (under God) as part of the refinining and purifying process.

I wrote the following article in 2002 for Sword magazine -
http://www.christianstogether.net/Articles/393380/Christians_Together_in/Christian_Life/God_help_us.aspx

It was originally published with the magazine's title: "Revival - its a gift".
Mini 11/05/2016 14:31
Interesting article with a lot of relevant points. There are two levels of genuine repentance (not counting posing for show!) : one where we use our rational mind and we are still in control. I don’t think there is anything wrong with this and God hears it. Then there is the kind of repentance which resembles the account of Joshua the High Priest, who found himself standing before the LORD in filthy garments, with no place to hide. This is pure gift and cannot be manufactured.

I think it is worth mentioning that Daniel was surely remembering those words in Chronicles when he prayed in Daniel 9.

Perhaps your point about the repentance of Israel being done in private, and in families apart, would be for the avoidance of making a public display for appearance only?

I’m not sure we should be thinking along the lines of “Does God want us to repent” or “Does He want to bring us revival”. Even on the natural level, isn’t repentance the ONLY true response to what is going on now? Rather like the tax gatherer who “beat his breast and said, 'God, have mercy on me, a sinner.’” We aren’t simply out of touch with the Will of God, but we aren’t even in touch with our own natural heart – or I would prefer to use the old fashioned but more accurate word “bowels”? Deeply, inside of ourselves, doesn’t each one of us know we should repent?

You have Lance Lambert’s word to Great Britain on your website…”Will you who know Me and love Me go blind and dumb and deaf into this judgement? It is time for you who love Me, who are faithful to Me, to take action! Stand before Me and plead The Finished Work of My Son. At least cry out to Me, that there will be those who turn from darkness, from sin, and be saved. For whosoever shall call upon My Name in the midst of these judgements, I will save!” These are strong words. I have to confess that I am scared to do what he says and “stand in the gap”. I’m afraid that my husband would be attacked, who is not yet committed to Jesus. Does anyone else feel like me? I want to repent and pray for Britain, but not too much because of fear?

Editor 16/05/2016 18:02
Just a reminder and note: This thread is addressing the following question. Anonymous posts on other subjects will be deleted.

END TIME REVIVAL/HARVEST OF SOULS

Many Christians believe there will be a huge harvest of souls in the end times. Will anyone give their opinions about this and provide bible references please?
Dale M 18/05/2016 11:19
Correctly interpreting the Scriptures relating to future events is difficult and hence it is never wise to be dogmatic on every point. Moreover I want to be as concise as possible because long laborious threads are difficult to read and easily discarded!

It seems as if there will be a falling away before the Lord comes again. Nominal Christianity will decline. We seem to be experiencing this during the present days in which we live. (See 2 Thess. 2: 3-4). The Christian gospel is being suppressed or marginalised even in Western countries.

Nevertheless, as we survey the history of the Christian church, it is evident that Christianity thrives under persecution. It is possible therefore that, in the midst of the 'new atheism' sweeping the world, we might see a revival of Christianity as persecution increases in our land. That is, until the 'full number of the Gentiles has come in'. In accordance with Roman 11:25-26, it also seems that there will be a great turning to Christ among many (but not all) Jews.

Paul says 'not all who are descended from Israel are Israel' (Rom. 9:6). Consequently from Israel there will be a remnant (possibly a large remnant) that will turn to Christ. I would see the two words 'Israel' in Rom. 9:6 as having a slightly different meaning – it must be otherwise what Paul is saying makes no sense. The first Israel in Rom. 9:6 refers to ethnic Israel, while the second Israel refers to spiritual Israel – the believing remnant. This is the general thrust of Paul's discourse in Romans 9-11. When Paul says 'And so all Israel will be saved' (Rom. 11:26), it must have the latter meaning – the spiritual, or remnant believing Israel – otherwise Paul is contradicting himself. This would be analogous to the 'fullness of the Gentiles' statement.

What other Scriptures could be considered?

Zechariah chapters 12-14 seem to suggest that before Christ comes again many Jews will believe in Jesus Christ as their Messiah. Their gathering in the land of Israel in these days might be a means of facilitating this. Like Matt. 24, these chapters in Zechariah as well as some of the other Old Testament prophecies seem to be an example of proleptic prophecy, having a dual fulfilment. Some parts of Zechariah 12-14 have fulfilment at Christ's first coming up until His ascension while other parts reach fulfilment at His second coming. It is vitally important to bear in mind also that much apocalyptic literature (OT prophets, Daniel, Revelation etc.) is highly figurative in the use of language.

So, it seems to me from an overall survey of Scripture that, at the time immediately before the end, there will be some measure of revival around the world spurred on by persecution until the 'full number of Gentiles' has come to faith, followed by or simultaneous with, a turning to Christ as their Messiah among the Jews, possibly facilitated by their gathering as a nation in the ancient land surrounded by many enemies.

I am not being dogmatic. This is my preliminary thoughts after a general (perhaps too superficial) study of Scripture and church history. In the end, only God knows and He may have decreed not to reveal everything that we are not supposed to know anyway!
JL (Guest) 18/05/2016 21:55
Why this reticence regarding "being dogmatic"? Why apologise about it? It is almost as if "being dogmatic" is some kind of a disease? "God is not the author of confusion" 1 Corinthians 14.33. If it were not for Luther's dogmatism, we would still be in the shackles of popery! Spurgeon said it right when he said "Dogmatism, glorious old dogmatism, where have you been? Come back, we need you now!"
What is ever the point of advancing theories if you have no conviction about them?

JL (Guest) 18/05/2016 22:49
Furthermore; regarding the evidence that "Christianity thrives under persecution".
No doubt TRUE Christians throughout the ages have been persecuted for remaining faithful to God's word (Just as well they WERE dogmatic, otherwise they could never have done so!)
According to my Bible, it is ONLY a simple matter of merely attempting (by being dogmatic) to "live godly in Christ Jesus" that we "SHALL suffer persecution." 1 Tim 3.12.
At some point we have to "nail our colours to the mast" otherwise we shall always be forever listing out at sea!
Dale M 19/05/2016 10:43
JL Guest), Great Bible scholars of past days, such as Matthew Henry, John Gill and many Reformers and the Puritans, were not dogmatic about the correct interpretation of the Zech 14 passage. Matthew Henry commented “these verses are dark and hard to be understood” (Matthew Henry's Commentary Vol. 4 p1468). John Gill in his commentary on Zechariah expressed similar sentiments.
JL (Guest) 19/05/2016 13:48
And....I agree!
But today, we have far, far, greater light, let us now use it? (Henry called the verses dark!) Israel are now back in the Land in unbelief as the Bible prophesied. Those great names were not pre-millennial, (Spurgeon who succeeded Gill was pre-mill) and existed in the days soon after the Reformation! Many speak of the Reformation as a finished work, no, let us build on what has happened and be dogmatic! The verses ONLY make sense through pre-millennial glasses!
(page   1   2   3   4   5   6   7   8   9   10   11)
start of topic

From:
Comment:
Icon:
Emoticon