The Second Coming of Christ

by maccauk 33 Replies latest watchtower bible

  • Fisherman
    But on the day that Lot went out of Sodʹom, it rained fire and sulfur from heaven and destroyed them all. 30 It will be the same on that day when the Son of man is revealed. 31 “On that day let the person who is on the housetop but whose belongings are in the house not come down to pick these up, and likewise, the person out in the field must not return to the things behind.

    If the above verses are future, why do the verses use language directed at the people listening to Jesus if God had no intention whatsoever to fulfill any part of the prophecy in the first century?

  • David_Jay


    Remember, the writer is trying to make Jesus sound like he is foretelling the destruction of the Second Temple, an event that happened AFTER the gospels were composed. The city is supposed to fall, Jesus claims the Jews are supposed to be punished for their sins with their blood, and then Jesus is to return and rule as Messiah. None of this happened.

    Jesus predicts Jerusalem ending with the Temple, which fell in 70 CE, but the Jews continued living there, flourishing with several years of independence from Rome until 135 with the Bar Kokhba revolt. Jesus still did not return.

    The Jews returned to their land in 1947 with Israel once again becoming an independent state. In 2000, Christianity stopped formal proselytizing of Jews, and in 2015 declared the teaching of supersessionism as incompatible with the Gospel.

    Jesus still has not returned.

    Today's theologians in the Church say the writers may have shaped this discourse with anti-Jewish sentiment no longer appropriate to Christianity. They were hoping that the Temple's fall would be good for them and would see the end of the Jews that didn't follow Jesus, but such views no longer should shape Christian doctrine according to theologians of the Church.

  • David_Jay

    Correction to the above post. The following sentence:

    Remember, the writer is trying to make Jesus sound like he is foretelling the destruction of the Second Temple, an event that happened AFTER the gospels were composed...

    Should read:

    Remember, the writer is trying to make Jesus sound like he is foretelling the destruction of the Second Temple, an event that happened BEFORE the gospels were composed...

    The gospel of Mark was composed around the time the Second Temple fell, in 70 CE. The Jewish Christians at the time were hoping that a void would open up that would grant them legitimacy with the Romans as Judaism was legal under Roman law, but Christianity was not.

    With the Temple gone, the first Christians (who were of Jewish origin) tried to take the name "Jew" exclusive to themselves before Roman authority. As such, they claimed that Jesus was a prophet and as proof, claimed he "foretold" the victory of the Roman army over Jerusalem symbolized by the Temple's fall.

    This attempt backfired in Rome. The Romans had no hatred of the Temple and tried to save it. It caught fire in the siege by mistake. Judaism was still legal throughout the empire after the event.

    Also the Jews were not driven away from Jerusalem. It was allowed to prosper with its Jewish population while Christians became the object of persecution. But then Bar Kokhba arose as prince, Jerusalem declared independence from Rome, and then, and only then, were the Jews banned from Jerusalem in 135 CE. But Christians still got no religious freedom and never did get to replace the Jews as they had hoped (not to mention did their Christ ever return during that promised generation).

    Mark's Temple prophecy gets extended into Matthew's Parousia prophecy in his revisionist gospel and as happens in Luke's "times of the Gentiles" prophecy. It gets totally dismissed, however, by John who elevates Jesus to God status in his opus, described as someone who has been ruling as God forever and ever anyway.

  • Fisherman
    Remember, the writer is trying to make Jesus sound like he is foretelling the destruction of the Second Temple, an event that happened before the gospels were composed. --DJ

    Then throw the NT in the garbage. -Who has time? This thread and my question assumes the NT is from God.

  • David_Jay

    That's not how the Church defines inspiration.

    In Christian terms, inspiration involves everything God wanted the writer to say, but also does not prevent the writer from including concepts that are dictated by the confines of human nature and the limitations of culture and the period in which the author lived.

    For instance, the authors of the New Testament tend to write of seizures as demonic possession. Was it really demonic forces causing the humans to suffer or were these seizures that Jesus was curing?--Compare Mark 9:20-27.

    The only reason epileptic episodes are called "seizures" is because ancient cultures believed spirits were seizing control of people and causing them to act this way. The description of epileptic episodes in the gospel Scriptures matches in vocabulary the way they are described in other first century literature.

    Most agree that Jesus was curing seizures, not actually performing exorcisms in these particular cases that are described like this. This type of limited composition does not invalidate the value of the inspired work in the eyes of Christianity, nevertheless. No actual demons were involved, but that was due merely to the way people spoke of seizures back then. The cures, teaches the Church, were still authentic, it claims, even if the descriptions are faulty based on first century limitations.

    This goes for the Final Discourse on Mount Olivet. It was a discourse perhaps about judgment upon Israel but due to anti-Jewish sentiments in the Church, became colored as something else.

    You may think it garbage, but the Church does not. It can see past the human limitations to the truths of Jesus to see warnings about never thinking that what you have with God is permanent just because it's a temple or some deep understanding. It can all come tumbling down and change in a minute, and because you are not ready, your world can end and you with it!

    I'm a Jew, not even a Christian, but I know they (Christians) don't need things to be as exact and literal as you to keep their faith in it. They have yet to call it garbage, yet believe exactly as I wrote. Who do you think I got all that I've posted on this thread from? Not me! It's from the footnotes of the official Catholic Bible of the UK, the Jerusalem Bible, and the USA, the NABRE, and the ecumenical, academic standard NRSV. None of this was my opinion or invention.

    These are words of believing Christians, not mine. I am Jewish.

  • Fisherman

    DJ: My only point is that your related post is not relevant to the topic or to my question. ( Not debating if it is true or false.) I was not saying that your post is trash or judging the vaue of your information. I only meant to say that if the gospels are not prophetic, I have no interest. My question considers the gospels and by extension the NT as prophetic. If you can't think in those terms, you should recuse yourself from trying to answer my question.

  • David_Jay

    My posts came from Christian academic and scholarly sources, even citing the Pontifical Vatican Council at one point and linking to an official 2015 document.

    I offered sound, critical work that came not from personal opinion (as again I am Jewish) but from mainstream Christianity!

    This isn't your thread. You don't make the rules. I was following the sound rules of critical methodology, not bending to what you like or posting answers that only you prefer to hear.

    Besides, if I am the first person you've ever heard this from, that the Final Mount Olivet Discourse is not believed by scholars, clergy, theologians, and mainstream Christianity to be as prophetic as it reads in the Bible, then you have only yourself to be angry with. It means you have never cracked an academically sound book of Biblical exegesis in your life.

    I am not going to think in close-minded terms. I formally studied Biblical philology, New Testament textual transmission, Koine Greek etymology, Christological Exegetical Hermeneutics, in addition to my Hebrew and Jewish studies. I worked as a translator for a bishop who was a member of the USCCB, and worked on a project translating the Hebrew text of Tobit from the Dead Sea Scrolls in 2010. I am not here answering posts on whimsical feelings to just please people, but based on the best and latest scholarly information that I know is available.

    Frankly, I couldn't care less what you consider the gospels to be. I am well studied. I was presenting the best data for everybody to read so they would have it. I wasn't writing for the benefit of just one person or merely to counter you. To me the only thing that matters is setting the matter straight with the most objective reply I can give.

    Again, this is not your thread or forum. Anyone can answer your questions. If you don't want people to write replies, don't post anything in the first place.

  • dubstepped

    Fisherman is the resident JW here David. In case you haven't noticed, it's their world and we're just living in it. If you can't discuss things within the framework of the cult game that they want to play you're being unfair. It reminds me of a thread here where someone's active JW parents are going to the Homeowners Association with complaints because their neighbors put up Halloween decorations and they're afraid the brothers might mistake some of them as being theirs. Nevermind that the neighbors aren't infringing upon their property rights, the JWs throw a tantrum like a little boy or girl upset that mommy or daddy isn't playing right.

    Fisherman can't have open discourse because he can't control the direction it goes to fit his tiny window of a narrative. You're right David, you don't have to play by his rules. It is the arrogance of a JW on display. 14 years of posting on here and he still thinks this is a JW forum. He tries to dominate every thread that piques his interest with his very narrow cult leanings.

  • David_Jay

    Thanks, dubstepped, for filling me in. I appreciate it.

    And if you like rules, Fisherman, here are some I expect of you: have real open and critical discussion when you are around me, leave your personal beliefs and opinions at the door, and be prepared to have your comments tested by disinterested parties as anyone does in any critical method. And if you say you're a critical thinker, then you had better have taken a course or two in forensic methodology and/or speaking, because you cannot teach it to youself--otherwise you'll get smashed and slashed with your own words by someone who has. I have had three years of formal training in forensic and critical methodology.

    That's the way it's done in the real world of Biblical scholarship. If you can't run with the big dogs, then you have no right to be setting rules in the first place, Fisherman.

    And theses aren't warnings. It's a list of guarantees.

  • punkofnice

    Playing 'devils avocado'

    I'm yet to see any evidence outside of the bible for a 1st coming.

    Just saying.

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