01/09/09

1 Corinthians 15:3-4 "For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received, that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, 4 and that He was buried, and that He was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures"

Though many of the finer points of Hyper Preterist (HyP) error can be displayed in detail, doing so can often be hard to understand for those unstudied in biblical theology.

As with currency, the best way to spot the counterfeit is to know the genuine article very well. And so, perhaps the easiest way to show just how different HyP error is from the entire scope of historical Christianity is to point out the view's vastly different storyline. Throughout Christian history, the focal point for the total revelation of New Covenant redemption has always been the cross of Jesus Christ. This is the genuine article.

Most Christians are probably aware that the removal of separation between man and God is a gift revealed in its fullness by Christ's sacrificial death on the cross. These same people may be surprised to hear that, according to Hyper Preterism, the cross of Jesus Christ was insufficient for this purpose, and needed to be augmented by the fall of the Jewish temple 40 years later. So far as I know, every outlet of HyP doctrine endorses the view that the the fall of Jerusalem in AD70 was the "consummation of the ages" event that removed the separation between man and God.

Not until forty years following the cross, it is taught, was the New Covenant finally established in its fullness, and the separation between man and God removed. This is the counterfeit.

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04/23/08

Natural Israel's History as a Type
Prophetic Fulfillment As Shadow

Historical Israel's Prophecy/Fulfillment Model Seen in the "Land Promises"

Almost everyone interested in eschatology is familiar with the relationship between prophecy and fulfillment. Clearly, there is a natural association between a prediction and its accomplishment.

No matter the context, seeing predictions come true can be very exciting. For instance, baseball player Babe Ruth is famous for having pointing his bat over the outfield fence prior to a pitch, and then clouting a home run to the exact location of his gesture.

Some prophecies are not fulfilled nearly so soon after their original declaration. However, when they are finally realized, the one who foretold its accomplishment looks even more impressive, for having been correct so much earlier. For instance, Albert Einstein's prediction of "frame dragging" (which assumed that space/time is pulled out of shape by large rotating objects) took 80 years to be confirmed. Scientists were thrilled to have been able to confirm Einstein's genius (and the fact that neither space nor time are fixed).

Biblical prophecies about Jesus, as well as those uttered by Him, are given much attention in an attempt to prove -- or disprove -- that the Bible and the Lord are superhuman and Divine.

Sometimes, however, in an attempt to "confirm" a prophecy, a rush to judgment is made, whereby a mistake brings disrepute upon the supposed author. This happens often regarding supposed prophecies about "the end of the world." For almost 2,000 years, futurist Christians have predicted the end of the world in their near futures, only to have their expectations crushed when the earth did not blow up on cue. Repeated failures have brought an odium of shame to the Bible and the Lord, even though the fault was entirely with those who mistook the prophecies for something they were not.

With Hyper Preterism (HyP), the miscues usually accrue in the other direction -- declaring something as being completed when in fact it is not. However, in some cases (such as with Jesus' "it is finished" declaration on the cross), things which are accomplished by Jesus Crhsit are said to be needing augmentation by the fall of a building in AD70.

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04/21/08

Matthew 26:64 is NOT a "Preterist Time Indicator" Pointing to AD70

Divine Manifestation

Hopefully, readers are starting to get the picture that, so far, the best support for the Hyper Preterist (HyP) view of "time indicators" is assuming the the point in question -- as though AD70 was always in view, even if the fall of Jerusalem is not in the text or the context. It was certainly a shock to me once I realized that so much of what had seemed unassailable was now being recognized as the pure wishful thinking that it was, being based upon a lot of presuppositions and a couple of filtered eyes. For those who are willing to see, such has been revealed with Matthew 10:23 and Matthew 16:27-28.

Well, Matthew 26:64 represents the worst argument in support of HyP yet. After all, it could be understandable to equate the judgment of Matthew 16:27-28 with the undeniable events of AD70. Lightfoot certainly did, although he didn't make the extraordinary leaps with that belief that HyP does.. as though this one judgment was the final judgment of the Lord!

Jesus' prophecy in Matthew 26:64 is consistently listed among the "preterist time indicators" (PretCoz #13) ; and yet, I would be very surprised if most seasoned Preterists who claim such were not actually aware that there are very serious problems with using this text as an indicator of AD70. If that is so, it hasn't seemed to have effected the promotion of this passage as a support of the HyP view... But with this passage, there is just no excuse except (at best) a lamentable inability to see beyond the presupposition of AD70 fulfillment or, at worst, callous indifference as to whether it is a tight fit or not. This is the tendency to consider a verse "troublesome" at best or a "trouble text" at worst when it does not support the presupposed conclusion.

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04/20/08

Matthew 10:23 is NOT a "Preterist Time Indicator" pointing to AD70

New Testament towns and cities known to have been visited by Jesus

It is very easy to read our ideas into the text of the Bible. In theological terms, this is known as Eisegesis (Greek: eishègeisthai 'to lead in'), which is the process of interpreting in such a way as to introduce one's own ideas into the text or context. With Hyper Preterism's "time texts," eisegesis is oftentimes the rule rather than the exception. In my opinion, such is the case when it comes to the "coming of the son of man" reference in Matthew 10:23.

It has become a working assumption in Hyper Preterism that the "coming" passages in the New Testament refer only to AD70. And the eisegetical presupposition that Matthew 10:23 is a "(Hyper) Preterist time indicator" is considered to be unassailable. This is true, despite the fact that there is not a hint or reference regarding AD70 in the text or context of the chapter from which to support this conclusion.

The "time indicator" claim is likewise made in reference to Matthew 16:27-28. However, as we have seen, there is not a hint of AD70 in the text or context of Matthew 16:27-28. This exposes a very embarrassing situation for Hyper Preterist scholarship. I have seen my fair share of HyP books (including a much heralded book recently released) which lead off with Matthew 16:27-28 as the cornerstone proof of the AD70 narrative. In short, Matthew 16:27-28 is not a "preterist time indicator" supporting Hyper Preterism, even tough it oftentimes is given more emphasis as a "proof text" than even Matthew 24:34!

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04/19/08

Matthew 16:27-28 is NOT a "Preterist Time Indicator" pointing to AD70

The Coming of the Son of Man at the Stoning of Stephen



After having been a futurist, a partial preterist, and then a full preterist, I came to the realization that attempting to limit the redemptive and prophetic acts of God to a single moment in time is the cause of most confusion regarding eschatology.

Why would we expect the Lord to perform His acts of power and glory just once — be it at a moment in time in the past or the future? What good does that do for all other generations? That incredibly narrow focal point robs every generation of so much contemporary strength -- by saying either that "it hasn't come yet" (Futurism) or "it is already over" (Preterism).

It seems to me that all prophecy ultimately finds its accomplishment in Jesus Christ Himself, as scripture states (Gal. 3:16, II Cor. 1:20, Col. 2:9, much etc.). The working of our Lord - translating His people from darkness to Light, and from old to new -- happens internally and personally for each, as opposed to externally and historically for a single generation of people. Even the cross must be received, and each follower must bear it in their own day. TODAY is the day of salvation, and TODAY if you will harden not your heart, etc...

An example of the mistaken external/historical realignment of eschatology can be found in commentaries on Matthew 16:27-28, which is a passage all Hyper Preterist (HyP) systems apply to AD70.


The Stoning of Stephen

Consider the “son of man” passage of Matthew 16:27-28 in light of its immediate textual context : persecution and martyrdom.

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