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« The Priesthood of all believers | Main | How the end affects today... »

August 01, 2007

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Jamie G

I think you have to ask, why are so many Christians drawn to this sort of belief?

I think it's because the church has so few positive messages about how different this present world could be with the redeeming presence of christians, carrying the life of Jesus with them, infiltrating the society around them as a 'salt', effecting this wonderful transformation that is a fruit of the 'divine conspiracy' (to borrow from Dallas Willard).

Let's face it: the world is pretty messed up. We know all to well the power of evil; the pervasiveness of suffering. All around us is loss, brokenness and suffering, even in a 'nice' area.

In the absence of a clear vision of effecting heaven here on earth, we're vulnerable to literalist interpretations of revelation - which, let's face it, are fun, spooky and satisfying (in the sense that the bad guys get it, and we get to leave before the mess starts).

But let's not be too hard on believers with these beliefs. I suspect the Left Behind books may have done some good, for all their theological naivety, if they have ignited in the hearts of beleivers a desire to get ready. And I also think that we should excercise caution before laying into 'fundies' - they may well be the modern day equivalent of 'weaker brothers' who can't eat meat sacrificed to idols that Paul talks about. By bashing their beliefs, we may be placing stumbling blocks in front of them.

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