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Author Topic: Are Christian's Theocrats?
KnightEnder
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In Revelations it says that Jesus will return and eventually begin his reign of peace for 1000 years. Are all you Christian's okay with being ruled by an entity with no recourse? Doesn't that make Jesus a tyrant? Not to mention how does he plan on ruling in peace? Wipe out ALL the other religions?

KE

[ March 16, 2005, 06:59 PM: Message edited by: KnightEnder ]

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Serotonin'sGone
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Uh, that's one interpretation of revelation (commonly referred to as pre-millennialism). I think it's silly.

[ March 16, 2005, 07:07 PM: Message edited by: Serotonin'sGone ]

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whatablair
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Oh man! I have never heard of this before. I thought it was funny...

I can't speak for all Christians, but as for me, yes, I am okay "with being ruled by an entity with no recourse".

My view is that Jesus knows me better than I know myself. He knows what is best for me better than I do. I have more faith in his ability to plan my life than in my own. As such it is not a big stretch to cede control as it were.

I guess an analagy which could work is trusting your money to a money manager. If I do not know how best to use my money, trusting it to a money manager who's job it is to be good with money is a much safer/wiser decision. Then if they suck at it, you take your money back and go elsewhere.

As for the tyrant part, no I do not think so. I view this life as a winnowing process (to borrow the agricultural and biblical analagy). Through the choices we make in our life we are either growing towards the people that God intends us to be, or we are growing away from that image. Generally this is also tied to gaining knowledge and understanding of God, and growing in relationship with him.

When Jesus returns, he will seperate those who have freely choosen to live with him and those who haven't. I think that some people will not know what they have chosen until that day. Many might even think they have chosen one way only to learn the opposite...

I think ruling in peace will be a natural result of the selection process. By accepting those who are choosing him, He is bringing those people who will enjoy and rejoice at his presence. Further, in the face of God, all will be placed aside...all of our misconceptions about the nature of God, they will all be replaced with his presence.

I do not think that "Wipe out ALL the other religions" is accurate. I think "Wipe out ALL religions" is accurate. In the presence of God there will no longer be 'religion' instead there will be understanding, and either acceptance or dismissal. Afterwards there will only be joy.

-blair

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KnightEnder
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Blair,

What country do you reckon he will preside in? I think it will be the US since it is the home of the majority of Christians and he says in Revelations 22:24 "And the nations of them which are saved shal walk in the light of it: and the kings of the earth do bring their glory and honour into it."

Of course, Jesus Christ will win any election in the US. However, as a democracy I think we should insist that there at least be an election. [Wink] I wonder who the Dems would run against him?

KE

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KnightEnder
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I'd vote for him. Hey, at least he ain't George Bush!

KE

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Kit
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Well, I believe that there will be people of all religions after Christ comes. Or at least most. While I expect there will be many that were athiests, I doubt very many will stay that way after meeting God in person. I also doubt that very many Satanists will be hanging around. I believe that those here during the Millenium (what I know the 100 years as) will be those that are honest in heart and desire good.

As far as the king issue? Despite growing up in the U.S. and loving democracy and believing it to be the best human governemnt, I don't have a problem with being ruled by God as a king. Why? Well in the Book of Mormon, King Mosiah describes it well when he is changing the government of his people from a monarchy to a kind of democracy. He basically said that if you have a good, honest, hard-working king that you will do well, because the king will make decisions based on what is best for the people. But a selfish or otherwise bad king will hurt the people. He said the 'voice of the people' is less likely to chose poorly than a single king. I think he is right.

Even if there was a human being that I would trust to be an absolute monarch over me (and there's not), there is no way I would trust their children and grandchildren just because of ancestor.

But an omnicient, immortal, loving king. That I can live with.

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KnightEnder
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Really Kit? I'm an atheist. How is Jesus going to prove he is who he says he is? And even if he is, why should I let him rule me? Plus, a lot of people didn't believe him last time he was here, right?

KE

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Kit
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KE, LOL!

I believe the Bible says that Jesus will rule from Jerusalem. But I can't think of any specific references off the top of my head.

I probably should know that, but I worry less about what happens after He shows up than I do about what happens before. It's the lead up to His arrival that's filled with nasty stuff. [Smile]

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KnightEnder
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I've read Revelations several times and I can't find where it says he will rule from Jerusalem. I would be very appreciative if you, or anyone, could show me where it says that. Thanks.

KE

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Dagonee
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Here's one site that finds proof in Isaiah:

quote:
Jesus Christ will rule from Jerusalem, his capital city, which he once called "the city of the great King" (Matthew 5:35). His law will go out through all the earth, as we read in Isaiah 2. Read verses 1-4, and note particularly:

"Out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem."

I can't vouch for this site's theology or intepretation in any way, though. Doesn't seem particularly convincing to me.

I do know lots of millenialists take a lot of their beliefs from Isaiah, not just Revalation.

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Kit
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That LOL was for the voting, I type so slow I get off the rythm.

Well, for one thing I think coming in the power and glory of God, as opposed to sneaking in through the stable will convince a lot of people. Other than that? I'm not sure, but I think Jesus may have something figured out. He's had 2000 years or so to work out the details.

As for whay should you let Him rule you? Well, I believe that Christ knows what is best for me and will do what is best for me, whether I like it or not. So I trust Him to rule me.

If you don't trust Him, then I see no reason you should let Him rule you, at least any more than you would let anyother government you lived under rule you. (I mean things like pay taxes, obey the speed limit, and stuff like that.)

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LoverOfJoy
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While mormons focus a lot more on preparing for the second coming than what will happen after it, I believe that our teachings suggest he will "rule" from Missouri...the new Jerusalem...although I've also heard that he will rule from both Jerusalems. *shrug*

As for Jesus running for president, why do you think there's been a movement to allow foreign-born citizens to run? You didn't think it was for Arnold, did you? haha...and after that, an increase in the judges on the supreme court to 12 (one for each apostle). [Wink]

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Kit
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Ah, now that you mention it LOJ I remember. If I remember correctly...

I should have thought of it from the verse Dagonee quoted.

Jerusalem will be the spiritual capital of the world. "the the word of the Lord from Jerusalem."

Zion/the New Jerusalem (which was Enoch's city taken into heaven) will decend out of heaven with Christ and be in the Missouri area. That will be the secular/governmental capital of the world."Out of Zion shall go forth the law".

Or at least that's how I remember it. It's been I while since I've studied that stuff.

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TomDavidson
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quote:

Zion/the New Jerusalem (which was Enoch's city taken into heaven) will decend out of heaven with Christ and be in the Missouri area. That will be the secular/governmental capital of the world."Out of Zion shall go forth the law".

*giggle*
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LoverOfJoy
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quote:
*giggle*
Anything else to contribute, Tom?
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Jordan
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Hmm... He would be a dictator -- post-millenial society would have an imposed social welfare function.
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Jordan
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And Kit, I'm guessing you're a Latter-Day Saint?
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towellman
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"I've read Revelations several times..." & " I'm an atheist. How is Jesus going to prove he is who he says he is?"

You seem to have missed the reference to Christ's return in Malachi 4:1-2.
quote:
FOR, behold, the day cometh, that shall burn as an oven; and all the proud, yea, and all that do ewickedly, shall be stubble: and the day that cometh shall burn them up, saith the LORD of hosts, that it shall leave them neither root nor gbranch.
2 But unto you that fear my name shall the Sun of righteousness arise with healing in his wings; and ye shall go forth, and grow up as calves of the stall.

Are you sure that you'd still be around KE? Not to assume that you are wicked solely by being an Atheist, since wickedness seems to relate more to actions than beliefs, but I was under the impression that the wicked get reduced to carbon at the 2nd coming.

(I don't mean to be one of those bible-thumping folk telling people they differ with that they're going to burn, but since you seems prepared to thresh out the issue of the "Millenium" I thought I should point that out.)

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KnightEnder
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I'm not familiar with Malachi, is that from the Bible? According to Revelations it seems like we, atheists, will be stuck here on earth while all the Christian's go up. And then we get to decide. It's kinda like the devil, the Devil would never offer to make me a deal, no matter how much I ask, because his existence would be proof of Christ's existence.

Dagonee,

In spite of your past transgression, you seem to be intent on being helpful. Thanks.

KE

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0Megabyte
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KnightEnder

"In Revelations it says that Jesus will return and eventually begin his reign of peace for 1000 years. Are all you Christian's okay with being ruled by an entity with no recourse? Doesn't that make Jesus a tyrant? Not to mention how does he plan on ruling in peace? Wipe out ALL the other religions?"

To answer this original question:
Am I okay with being ruled by the guy who, according to my religion, sacrificed his life once already to save all humanity from sin? Those seem better credentials than anyone else applying for the job of world domination.

And does it make him a tyrant? Well, the current use of the term tyrant is basically a repressive dictator, isn't it? I'm sure Jesus would be the most benevalant king of all, judging from what I know of the guy. And when it comes to efficiency of a state, isn't a benevolant dictatorship the most ideal? At least, that's what I've heard.

How does he plan on ruling in peace? I guess by proving his divinity and power without a doubt, and ending human suffering, since that would be within his power.

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OhPuhLeez
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If he rules from the U.S. I'm moving to Canada.

However, I can almost guarantee you that, among other things, homosexuals will get the right to marry, Jesus being a loving and accepting dude, the way I've heard him described.

Or does he hate the gays too?

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whatablair
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Haha...I bet he will run a socialist ticket and not get elected. Only dems or reps get elected here. Then he will have to overthrow by force of arms...I think it says that somewhere in the fine print. [Wink]
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whatablair
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-KE
quote:
What country do you reckon he will preside in? I think it will be the US since it is the home of the majority of Christians and he says in Revelations 22:24 "And the nations of them which are saved shal walk in the light of it: and the kings of the earth do bring their glory and honour into it."
Revelation 21:1-3
quote:
1Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea. 2I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. 3And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Now the dwelling of God is with men, and he will live with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God."
So the US won't exist.
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Locus
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A guy appears with buckets of charisma and you doubt he'll get elected?

He'll get to play a few more rounds of popsicle boy for sure, particularly if he tries to convince Jews of his legitimacy again but he'll be a shoe in for office.

[ March 17, 2005, 08:04 AM: Message edited by: Locus ]

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Adam Masterman
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My take:

(disclaimer: I'm not christian, I'm a Buddhist)

The idea of the millenial reign is a hold-over from Jewish theology. Remember, the Messiah is the heir to the authority of the Davidic kings, and is in fact directly descended from them (for Jesus' lineage from David, see the beginning of Matthew). Since Jewish nationalism was under such pressure during the Roman occupation, the popular theologies of the time fantasized about the Messiah and a return to Jewish rule over Jews. Thus, when Jesus of Nazareth's followers started making Messiah claims for him, part and parcel of that, in the context of contemporaneous Judaism, was political authority.

Realpolitik explanation aside, I would have to say that, if the myth of the millenium is true, the earth is far from ready for it. Thinking about how Jesus taught his followers to live, does anyone here think there is any Christian community (or any other) that he would choose to come to and live among yet? Personally, I see this myth as pointing towards the perfection of the human potential. Working towards it is great, thinking that we have realized it is flawed and dangerous.
Adam

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Kit
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Jordan, yes.

Tom, I am also curious what the giggle is for. Especially since it was a comment of mine that seems to have caused it.

KE, Malachi is the last book of the Old Testament.

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Adam Masterman
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Here's an interesting digression: Wouldn't this be a fun question to have asked Bush during the debates? "In the event of the Second Coming of Christ, would you support moving from a democracy to a theocratic dictatorship?" Obviously this kind of question would only be asked to damage his candidacy, but personally I just think it would be fun to watch him answer (or try to). Maybe the dems can get their own fake reporter to ask this. I bet C-SPAN's ratings would enjoy a boost, to say the least. [Big Grin]
Adam

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JohnLocke
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Back when Christ was "my Christ", he was the kind of fellow who washed the feet of prostitutes and considered the authority of Rome to be just that: Roman authority.

It's less than comforting to realize that some folks think that non-believers need to be erradicated before mankind is able to reach its peaceful potential.

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Kit
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Adam, considering the large number of Christians in the US, I think that would have been a fun question to ask both candidates. hehehe, I'm giggling just thining about it. I think they'd both be funny for completely different reasons. Realisticly I can't see that question helping anybody's candidacy.
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Adam Masterman
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Kit,
you're right, this question would be a loser for both candidates. Here's a novel solution: legislate a mandatory debate where candidates HAVE TO answer a slate of questions chosen by the people. The method for selecting questions: an internet site where questions are both proposed and voted on. Over time, the most popular questions rise to the top, and the top 20 or so are chosen for the debates. Technology serving democracy. I'm trademarking this idea, its a gem.
Adam

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TomDavidson
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"Tom, I am also curious what the giggle is for. Especially since it was a comment of mine that seems to have caused it."

You really don't want me to answer that question. [Smile]

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vulture
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quote:
Originally posted by Kit:
Tom, I am also curious what the giggle is for. Especially since it was a comment of mine that seems to have caused it.

I am not Tom, but I will admit to being mildly amused at the idea that the new Jerusalem will come down from heaven and land somewhere in Missouri. That seems a very curious point of view to me, but then I have no idea where the idea comes fro, and it may well be an integral part of LDS beliefs for all I know. Hope I'm not being too offensive anywhere.

BTW re the US having the greatest number of Christians. Possibly true, but I reckon Brazil could be giving yo ua run for your money there. Plus that doesn't seem like a very good basis for deciding where Jesus would hang out. On previous evidence he would be more likely to be where there were very few religious people, and more likely be with the poor, needy and dispossessed.

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towellman
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The Questions for Pres. Debate website is a good idea, you should start a new thread with it.
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JohnLocke
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quote:
How does he plan on ruling in peace? I guess by proving his divinity and power without a doubt, and ending human suffering, since that would be within his power.
A world with no suffering is a world with no heroes. A divinity of rulership is the divine unsublime.
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towellman
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It seems that when thinking of Christ's return many imagine the jolly old Jesus of the New Testament to return and be nice to everyone and make everyone happy. If you only read the Gospels you could support that position, but the book Revelation as well as other Second Coming references acattered throughout the bible clearly describe the event as a partion of the final judgement.

In other words "Episode 1: The Savior", already took place and the good guy got crucified. The idea behind "Episode 2: The Judge" is that the bad guys get the short end of the stick.

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Kit
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vulture, I don't remember anyone saying the US had the most Christians, and that's certainly not what I was saying. Brazil might be correct, I'm not sure. I'd definately go with the Western Hemisphere having more than the Eastern though.


As far as the other, as was quoted before:

Revelation 21:1-3

1 Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea.
2 I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband.

The idea of a new Jerusalem coming from heaven with Christ is not unique the LDS doctrine, but the belief that it will come to the Missouri area is. It comes from revelations given to Jospeh Smith that can be found in the Doctine & Covenants, a book of LDS scripture.


From the Arcticles of Faith (10 of 13):

10 We believe in the literal gathering of Israel and in the restoration of the Ten Tribes; that Zion (the New Jerusalem) will be built upon the American continent; that Christ will reign personally upon the earth; and, that the earth will be renewed and receive its paradisiacal glory.

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Kit
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quote:
Originally posted by JohnLocke:
A world with no suffering is a world with no heroes. A divinity of rulership is the divine unsublime.

I totally agree with the first part. I think that may be one reason God allows suffering in the world, to allow us to become heros if we will.

But I have to admit, I have no idea what you are saying in the second statement. No idea whatsoever. [Confused]

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vulture
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quote:
Originally posted by Kit:
vulture, I don't remember anyone saying the US had the most Christians, and that's certainly not what I was saying. Brazil might be correct, I'm not sure. I'd definately go with the Western Hemisphere having more than the Eastern though.

It was KnightEnder who brought that up. I was just too lazy to go back and look at who said it.

quote:

As far as the other, as was quoted before:

Revelation 21:1-3

1 Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea.
2 I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband.

The idea of a new Jerusalem coming from heaven with Christ is not unique the LDS doctrine, but the belief that it will come to the Missouri area is. It comes from revelations given to Jospeh Smith that can be found in the Doctine & Covenants, a book of LDS scripture.


From the Arcticles of Faith (10 of 13):

10 We believe in the literal gathering of Israel and in the restoration of the Ten Tribes; that Zion (the New Jerusalem) will be built upon the American continent; that Christ will reign personally upon the earth; and, that the earth will be renewed and receive its paradisiacal glory.

It was only the Missouri bit I was unfamiliar with. Although I don't take Revelation as seriously predicting a cubic city 1,400 miles across is going to come out of the ksy and land on the earth. I don't think that anything in Revelation is even fractionally as literal as that.

Although if it did happen like that, Star Trek fans would probably think we were being invaded by the Borg [Big Grin]

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Kit
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We are the City of Zion. Prepare to be converted. Blasphemy is Futile.


Dang, where's that lightning rod, I might need it soon. [Big Grin]

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FIJC
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quote:
"In Revelations it says that Jesus will return and eventually begin his reign of peace for 1000 years. Are all you Christian's okay with being ruled by an entity with no recourse? Doesn't that make Jesus a tyrant? Not to mention how does he plan on ruling in peace? Wipe out ALL the other religions?"
I don't take much of Revelation literally (the numbers are are symbols) and I don't buy a lot of what the millenialists (think Left Behind series) have to say about Christ's return either. I believe that when Christ's returns to earth, Judgement Day will happen, and the flock will be separated, and that will be the end of history as we know it.

But I acknowledge that I could be wrong, and that all the Pentecostals and Assemblies of God folks will be telling me "I told you so" afterall. Reveolation is probably the most difficult book of the Bible to interpret, mainly because it's basically a series of visions that John had while imprisoned, so I don't think that most of it can be taken literally.

[ March 17, 2005, 11:22 AM: Message edited by: FIJC ]

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