Gary responds to two individuals critical of his own eschatological view.

There is redemptive continuity between the testaments. Jesus didn’t come to start something new. We know from the book of Acts that thousands of Jews came to Jesus as their Messiah. The gospel was to be preached throughout the cities of Israel before the destruction of Jerusalem (Matt. 10:23) and the oikoumenē, the known world (Matt. 24:14). The gospel had been preached throughout the Roman Empire where there were hundreds of thousands of Jews (Rom. 1:8; 10:11–21; 16:25–26; Col. 1:6, 23; 1 Tm. 3:16).

James wrote his letter “to the twelve tribes who are dispersed abroad” (James 1:1). These were believing Jews who were being persecuted by their fellow Jews because they believed Jesus was the Messiah (1:2). Paul wrote to the Thessalonians “who had endured the same sufferings at the hands of [their] own countrymen, even as they from the Jews, who both killed the Lord Jesus and the prophets, and drove us out” (1 Thess. 2:14–15).

The Jewish nation did not reject Jesus as the promised Messiah. A remnant of Israel came to believe in Jesus as the Christ. The first Christians were Jews. Non-Jews were grafted into an already Israel-only ekklēsia (Rom. 11:11–22).

Peter resisted the suggestion that the Gentiles were to be grafted in (Acts 10) but through a vision from God he realized that “God has granted to the Gentiles also the repentance to life” (11:18; also 15:1–35). Paul had to remind him of this fact (Gal. 2). There aren’t two peoples of God, one earthly (Israel) and one heavenly (the Church). Jews and non-Jews make “one new man, establishing peace” that results in reconciling “them both in one body to God through the cross, by having put to death the enmity” (Eph. 2:15–16). The barrier of the “dividing wall” was broken down nearly two thousand years ago.

The Rapture and the Fig Tree Generation

The Rapture and the Fig Tree Generation

For decades Christians have been enticed with the belief that they would be taken to heaven before a coming tribulation period in an event called the ‘rapture.’ Since the national reestablishment of Israel in 1948, countless books and pamphlets have been written defending the doctrine assuring readers that it could happen at any moment. Where are we in God’s prophetic timetable?

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Gary responds to two individuals critical of his own eschatological view and points out that preterism is the only position that takes the Bible text literally. Letting the Bible interpret itself can never yield any of the Rapture positions, despite how many times adherents claim that Preterists are “scoffers.”

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