Friday, 29 October 2010

More Pre-Trib Dishonesty?

I hate to keep dwelling on this, but some people just will not let me let it go.

I was listening to David Hocking the other afternoon. Mr Hocking is, of course, a committed pre-trib rapturist, and he addressed the one passage I have often quoted that I believe disproves that very position.
Now we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by our gathering together unto him, That ye be not soon shaken in mind, or be troubled, neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by letter as from us, as that the day of Christ is at hand. Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition; (2 Thessalonians 2:1-3 KJV)

Mr Hocking went on to explain that the falling away (Gr. apostasia) merely meant, "departing," and applied it to the rapture, as in, the church, "departing." In fact, Strong's Concordance, as referenced in the Blue Letter Bible gives no such definition. In fact it gives only one,
1) a falling away, defection, apostasy

He then said, plainly as you can hear in his radio broadcast, that, at the temptation of Christ, when the angels ministered to Christ, " then says they departed..."

Well, first of all, I could find no reference in the Biblical text to the angels departing. The closest reference is the devil departing (Luke 4:13) and secondly, in any case, the word used is not apostasia. In fact, apostasia is used only twice in the entire New Testament, and never in the sense of a mere physical departing.

I have e-mailed Mr Hocking for clarification. Hopefully he will reply, but I'm afraid that, unless I stand to be corrected, this is another case of naivety, myopia or just plain fudging of Scripture on the part of someone clinging to an end-times pre-tribulation rapture position.

Take Care


Warren said...

John, I'm not familiar with the Blue Letter Bible. Do you know how it compares to the Net Bible as a study resource?

(Sorry for taking things off track.)

John K said...

Hi Warren,
I hjavent had much of a chance to chek out your site, but for passage lookup I usually use Bible Gateway. Blue letter Bible is kjv only, but I find it fairly straightforward to find a passage then click on concordance for the Strongs definitions.

Warren said...

Thanks. I haven't used the Net Bible a lot, but I've often seen it strongly endorsed (including by the two theological training institutions where I've taken courses in the past two years).

Kate Sanderson said...

Why does it matter? The core belief is that Jesus is going to come back. I don't think it matters if we are wrong about how it will happen.

John K said...

...Jesus is going to come back. I don't think it matters if we are wrong about how it will happen.
You're right of course Kate. but I'm just trying to point out the incosistencies in what I call the, "Left Behind" scenario regarding his coming. It's a very popular belief, a lot of people have bought into it, and I believe it is completely misguided.

Warren said...

Kate, I think it matters in terms of how ministry is conducted. I grew up in a church where I was always scared that the rapture could happen any second. My sister walked away from the church many years ago and still holds a deep resentment towards a pastor who scared her badly as a child.

Anonymous said...

I think it could matter a great deal. If you believe that you will not go through the tribulation and then you do, it could really shake one's faith.