No Fear of the Future

No Fear of the Future

Gary answers several questions from a listener who is fearful and anxious about the world based on what local pastors are preaching and teaching about the “end times." At first reading, the New Testament seems to teach that the temple would be destroyed (Matt. 23:38; 24:2), Jerusalem would come under siege (Matt. 22:7), and the Old Covenant order would come to an end before the last dis [...]

Prophecy ‘Experts’ Who Cried “Wolf!”

Prophecy ‘Experts’ Who Cried “Wolf!”

History is filled with prophecy speculators who claimed that some form of the end was on the horizon. “When Mark Twain was in London, a rumor of his death or imminent death reached the editor of the New York Journal, who sent its London correspondent the following cablegrams: ‘IF MARK TWAIN [IS] DYING IN POVERTY IN LONDON SEND 500 WORDS’ and ‘IF MARK TWAIN HAS DIED IN POVERTY SEND 1000 WORDS. [...]

Eschatology in Mexico

Eschatology in Mexico

Gary recently returned from a Pastor’s Conference in Mexico, where he spoke to a hundred pastors or so about eschatology. On today’s podcast, Gary discusses his travel to and from Mexico, his experiences while he was there, and his takeaways from teaching through a translator. Is Jesus Coming Soon? Daily on Christian radio and television and the the endless stream of prophecy books we [...]

The Impact AV is Having

The Impact AV is Having

Over the years, American Vision has had an impact on Christians from all over the world. It’s humbling to learn that your life’s work has meaning for other people. It’s especially gratifying and encouraging to learn that fellow Christians have gained a greater purpose because of the work of American Vision. The following is an email American Vision received. I’ve asked Neil if it would be OK to pu [...]

What Jehovah’s Witnesses and Last Days Advocates Have in Common

What Jehovah’s Witnesses and Last Days Advocates Have in Common

My friend Robert Cruickshank sent me a copy of a letter he received from a Jehovah’s Witness. It sounded so much like what we hear from Christians pushing the claim that we are living in the last days. I’m writing because as you know we are living in what the [Bible] refers to as the last days of this system of things, which begs this question; what’s next? Please a moment of your time to read wh [...]

The Man of Lawlessness

The Man of Lawlessness

Gary answers a listener question about 2 Thessalonians 2 and the man of lawlessness. Many believe that 2 Thessalonians 2 describes the end times leading up to the rapture of the church, the revealing of antichrist, and the second coming. Tim LaHaye, a representative of this perspective, writes: “Second Thessalonians 2:1–12 contains the rapture, Tribulation, and Glorious Appearing all in one chapte [...]

The Two Witnesses

The Two Witnesses

Gary answers a listener question about the two witnesses from Revelation 11. Immediately after the destruction of the temple and the judgment of Jerusalem, the Old Covenant age came to an end. The New Covenant was realized in all its fullness. The author of Hebrews writes that God had promised “Yet once more” to “shake not only the earth, but also the heaven” (Heb. 12:26). “‘Yet once more’ &hellip [...]

No Flesh Shall be Saved

No Flesh Shall be Saved

Gary responds to a recent article that discusses Matthew 24:22. The majority of today’s prophecy writers see today’s “wars and rumors of wars” as clear evidence that we are living in the last days. A study of the period before Jerusalem’s destruction in A.D. 70 tells a different story. The Roman historian Tacitus (A.D. 56–117) writes in his history of the period that there were “disturbances in Ge [...]

Witnesses and Disciples

Witnesses and Disciples

Gary answers a listener question about the difference between sending the disciples out to the “lost sheep of Israel” in Matthew 10 and the “Great Commission” in Matthew 28. There is a continuity of the people of God—called the ekklēsia in the Greek translation of the Old and New Testament—as well as Old Testament images that were first applied to Israel but in the New Tes [...]

Are There Contradictions in the Bible?

Are There Contradictions in the Bible?

Gary discusses a few “contradictions” commonly pointed out by critics. The Bible is literature. God speaks to us in words and themes that can be understood. Not all literature can be interpreted in the same way. Some will claim that the Bible must be interpreted literally. But what does that mean? There are always caveats. Does a dragon really mean a dragon? Should you really pluck out [...]

Cleansing the Entire Temple

Cleansing the Entire Temple

Gary walks through the book of Matthew pointing out the important passages that relate to preaching the Gospel and the impending judgment awaiting the temple standing in the first century. Does the Bible, especially the New Testament, predict that the temple will be rebuilt? It does not. Why are Jews wanting to rebuild the temple? For the same reason that the temple was maintained prior to its des [...]

Why Study Bible Prophecy Anyway?

Why Study Bible Prophecy Anyway?

Gary discusses why he spends so much time talking about Bible prophecy. The book of Genesis offers a commentary on the way God tells time. Pharaoh dreams of cows and ears of corn, some fat and some lean (Gen. 41:1–7). None of Pharaoh’s magicians and wise men could interpret the dream (41:8). Joseph is finally called upon to try his hand at an interpretation. Through this dream God was telling Phar [...]

You're in Good Company

You're in Good Company

Gary responds to a recent video and emails he has received that were critical of his views on Matthew 24. Modern writers from all different eschatological positions are beginning to recognize the historical fact that preterist interpretations of John’s visions are not a novelty that has invaded Christian exegesis in recent times. Professor Ron J. Bigalke, Jr. of dispensationalist Tyndale Theologic [...]

Tradition and Biblical Literacy

Tradition and Biblical Literacy

Gary is interviewed by Chris Arnzen on the “Iron Sharpens Iron” radio program about biblical understanding and denominational traditions. Misreading the Bible has led to misunderstandings which have resulted in creating a mythological tradition of nullifying what God’s Word actually says and means. Over time, the traditions have been used by religious authorities to supplant the truth [...]

Yes, There are Giants in the Land

Yes, There are Giants in the Land

It’s been said repeatedly that ideas have consequences. This is no less true of prophetic ideas. What a person believes about the future impacts how he lives in the present and plans for the days and years to come. We often look at present circumstances and see them as the standard to evaluate where we are in the world. Of course, we’re not the first generation to do this (Num. 13–14), but it seem [...]

Four Views of Revelation

Four Views of Revelation

Gary briefly discusses the four major interpretive approaches to the book of Revelation. Revelation uses many Old Testament symbols: eating scrolls, beasts, marks on the forehead, gold, thrones, sun, moon, stars, candlesticks, Balaam, Jezebel, dragon, Gog and Magog, Sodom, Egypt, and Babylon. It’s unlikely that Old Testament references to people and places appeared either in John’s day, or will ap [...]

Are There Signs Preceding the 'Rapture'? No and Yes

Are There Signs Preceding the 'Rapture'? No and Yes

In addition to dispensationalism’s insistence that in the New Testament God’s redemptive program changed from Israel to a new entity called “the Church,” another fundamental principle of dispensationalism is that there are no prophetic signs prior to the fictional “rapture.” Not one. Zilch. Nada. None. This is because, according to dispensationalists, the Church had its beginning at Pentecost. At [...]

It's Just Not There

It's Just Not There

Gary begins a short lesson on the four views of the book of Revelation. Political tyranny and religious apostasy are not necessarily signs of impending eschatological destruction. They, too, have been with us since the Fall. The light of the gospel was nearly extinguished as the church approached the sixteenth century. Few could ever have predicted what was about to happen, not only in terms of Ch [...]

Audience Relevance and Time Indicators

Audience Relevance and Time Indicators

Gary continues his lesson on hermeneutics by looking briefly at the time words that bookend the book of Revelation. The past fulfillment of most of the prophecies in Revelation 4-19 is compellingly suggested by the various time indicators contained in its less symbolic, more didactic introduction and conclusion. Revelation 1:1 opens the prophecies of Revelation and prepares the reader to understan [...]

"His Feet Will Stand on the Mount of Olives": A Commentary

"His Feet Will Stand on the Mount of Olives": A Commentary

For some time, I have been working on a commentary on Zechariah 14. It’s tough going. There aren’t that many good commentaries on Zechariah that aren’t dispensational. Dispensationalists have an advantage because in their view everything happens after the so-called rapture of the church. All other interpretations must find historical markers to account for their interpretation. Some argue for a se [...]