Raymond Arthur Waugh, Sr.
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All Church-Age Endtime
Part I Introduction
Part II EARLY PROPHETS SPOKE FALSELY
Part III LATER PROPHETS SPOKE FALSELY
Part IV DRAMATIC FALSE PROPHETS
Part V Famed False Prophets
Part VI Some Academic False Prophets
Part VII Some Confusing False Prophecy
Part VIII FALSE PROPHETS DISCUSS RUSSIA
Part IX A NEW TWIST ON PROPHECY
Part X SOME ACTIVE FALSE PROPHETS
Part XI SOME WHO SPOKE WISELY OF PROPHECY?
Part XII FINAL WORDS ABOUT FALSE PROPHETS
Nevertheless, and that most sadly, in every Church-Age generation there have been those who cannot be content with God's Word or with God's Agenda, as Jesus understood it. So, some three centuries later, we find one William Miller coming forth with the idea that he was able to determine the time of our Lord's Return. As in all earlier Church-Age generations, there were many who were ready to join him in his unscriptural beliefs and in his false prophecies that he may have deemed to be truth.
For those seduced ones of his day, William Miller provided a date in 1843 when Jesus would return to the earth and set up His Kingdom. Needless to say, Jesus did not return. So William Miller re-worked his calculations and said that Jesus would return the next year (See: C. Brownlow Hastings, "Introducing Southern Baptists," Paulist Press, 1981. p. 82) READ on MinistryServer.com. There were some bizarre happenings that took place in those distant days in connection with the unscriptural and false endtime teaching, but we shall not detail them here. It is now 1993, so we can know that William Miller was a false prophet, and those who followed him did so in open violation of the Word of God. Perhaps we may say that all of his followers were either ignorant of the Word of God, or they were in rebellion against it.
In some of the closing words of this volume, we shall reference an experience of John R. Rice that will document one of the very sad happenings that took place as a result of William Miller's false prophecy and his influence on others. It seems that one dear man who was a follower of William Miller was so caught-up in his false prophecy that he decided not to plant since he did not expect to be on earth for very long. As a result, he sat on his porch and failed to grow any grain or other foodstuff for his cattle or his family. This resulted in his losing all of his cattle except one, and his family had a great deal of difficulty surviving through the following winter.
So, we can know that there will always be those who can be seduced by that which is not true. Seemingly, there is something in the human psyche which makes that which is false to be far more palatable than that which is true. This is not a new phenomenon. Is this not the message that is emphasized for us in the last conversation between Pilate and Jesus? Even after Jesus had said, "Thou sayest that I am a king. To this end was I born, and for this cause came I into the world, that I should bear witness unto the truth. Everyone that is of the truth heareth my voice" (John 18:37), the plight of Pilate was hopeless. Though he was in the very presence of the One who had declared He was the truth, Pilate asked, "What is truth" (John 18:38).
We can know for certain, then, that false prophecy is always wrong in the eyes of our Lord Jesus for it is never true. Similarly, false prophecy is always wrong in the eyes of Jeremiah. As we have earlier noted, "The prophets prophesy falsely ... and my people love to have it so . . ." (Jeremiah. 5:31).
Following Deceived Men
First, anyone who provides an "endtime sign" which is not of God has been deceived. Second, anyone who provides an "endtime sign" that does not come to pass has deceived all who have believed his prophecy. It is God who has provided us with the words of Jesus and of Pilate and the word of Jeremiah. Therefore, false prophecy always should be wrong in our eyes, also.
Just a few years later, in 1889, one Charles Taze Russell concluded "that six thousand years from the creation of Adam were complete with A.D. 1872," and he predicted that the battle of Armageddon ". . . will end in A.D. 1914 with the complete overthrow of earth's present rulership" (Watchman Expositor, Vol. 9, No. 6, 1992. p. 4). Needless to say, Armageddon did not end in 1914, and Jesus did not appear on earth as they predicted. The basis for his conclusion was Ussher's 4,004 B. C. creation which really was the figment of his very fertile imagination -- not the Scriptures. He had been deceived by the fictional nonsense of Archbishop Ussher, and he then became the deceiver of others. In the process, another had proved himself to be a false prophet, and all of those who were following him were being deceived by his false prophecy.
Charles Taze Russell died in 1916, and the responsibility for the organization fell upon one Joseph Rutherford whom they would later call "Judge Rutherford." He had joined the Watch Tower organization in 1894. For all of those years, he had labored with a deceiver. Now, he, in turn, as one of the deceived was going forth to do some deceiving of his own. Consequently, in 1920, it was predicted in "Millions Now Living Will Never Die" that "1925 will mark the return of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob ... to the condition of human perfection" (Ibid. p. 5). When 1925 came and went, no one had seen the resurrected Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. Needless to say, most of the millions who were living in those days are no longer among us here upon the earth. "Judge Rutherford," then, was demonstrated to be a false prophet.
Once again, these Church-Age endtime prophets were proven to be false. Yet, today, millions are still involved with this organization that began with false prophecy, an organization that yet lives by its further revised false prophecy. Jeremiah's indictment falls on all who predict falsely:
The prophets prophesy falsely, and the priests [pastors or other religious leaders. RW] bear rule by their [lying] means; and my people love to have it so (Jeremiah. 5:31).
In 1934, there followed another by the name of Herbert W. Armstrong. According to what we may suppose is his autobiography, he began a mimeographed paper soon after beginning his "Worldwide Church of God." By the 1940's, his paper had become a very nice publication that he called "The Plain Truth."
Thankfully, I had read enough of them by 1954 to be able to conclude that much of what he taught was false. Still, in those distant days, many Baptists were of the opinion that much of what he said and what he wrote seemed to compare favorably with what they had learned to suppose was Baptist Theology. Men such as John R. Rice and Robert L. Sumner, thankfully, early realized that Herbert W. Armstrong was an enemy of the Cross of Christ. Unfortunately, they were not communicating with all Baptists.
One Sunday morning when I was scheduled to be in the pulpit in our San Antonio Church in Texas, a very dear and loved elderly member of our Church brought me a stack of "The Plain Truth" to distribute to the people. I advised her that I could not do that. I did take one copy into the pulpit with me, held it up, and said, "It says, Plain Truth, but it really is a plain lie." Already, in the 1940's, this man had predicted the end of the world and Armageddon by 1975.
As in the past, even now, I can hear some remarking, "but some of these men were not responsible members of anyone's Christian Church or any New Testament Church." Let me assure you, nonetheless, that what is true concerning Montanus, Maximilla, Waldo or Valdes, Luther, Calvin, the Anabaptists, Miller, Russell, Rutherford, Scofield, Larkin, and Armstrong is true also of all others who indulge in endtime prophecies, or who come forth with "endtime signs" for "The Church Age." All of them are false prophets who have refused to believe what Jesus said regarding men not knowing the time of the end, angels not knowing the time of the end, and that He, Jesus, had no knowledge concerning the time of the end. If we have any conscious understanding of the Scriptures, we can know that Jesus was explaining to us that this detail is forever the prerogative of God, our "Heavenly Father, only."
Let me, then, share the names of some who have been called prophets and the names of some who are being called prophets. As we shall note, most of these supposed prophets may have the name of being responsible Christians and leaders in some of the more prominent Christian communities. We shall demonstrate, nevertheless, that all of these who give us "endtime signs" or "endtime prophecies" for "The Church Age" are false prophets. Check me out, and you will discover that what I tell you is true! There has not been an exception! There is not an exception! Without any fear of Scriptural contradiction, I believe that we can say that there will not be an exception.
J. B. Hennigan
Recently, one dear Christian Brother by the name of J. B. Hennigan conducted a series of Bible studies on the book of Revelation in Calvary Baptist Church of Midland, Texas. He did this during the summer of 1992. Interestingly, he has provided us a relatively recent date for the beginning of "The Laodicean Period" of the Church. Three times during the course of his study which was based upon his book, "Our Saviour's Return," (Brentwood Press, 1987), and during the few sessions when I was present, he advised the congregation of some 35 mostly middle-aged and elderly folk that "The Laodicean Church" actually began about 1960.
This, obviously, differs considerably from C. I. Scofield's 19th century date and Larkin's date of 1900. Hennigan, nonetheless, provided several current "endtime signs" -- such as the changing situation in Europe and the condition of things here in America, and especially the approaching "European Common Market," and some discoveries in Israel -- as proof of his 1960 date. Some well-known news items in recent papers, magazines, and TV shows were the basis of his conclusion. So, some of the ladies and some of the men present in the meetings could be heard providing him with their approval "Amen's"!
He was advised by this unworthy one that his "Laodiceanism" was not Scriptural, and that it was nothing other than the figment of C. I. Scofield's imagination. He, however, had indulged in the deception too long not to continue doing the same in the course of this teaching seminar. As in most other similar situations, most of the people apparently were wholly agreeable to all of his unscriptural statements that fell from his smiling lips. They readily accepted his "Scofield Truths" as Scriptural Truth! Several shared their thinking with me. Needless to say, I did not share with any of these who indicated to me their approval of all that he was saying what I thought about his teaching or the fact that I had shared with him my contrary views.
Interestingly, in the "Preface" of his published work mentioned above, J. B. Hennigan says, "This outline and the love and much hard work, and study for thirty years is dedicated to the Glorious Second Coming of Jesus, and that wonderful group of senior citizens at Second Baptist Church in Odessa, Texas, and all of those dear people who 'love His appearing.'" That the man is sincere, and loved by many as a precious man of God, there is no question. I certainly would be one of the last ever to question his sincerity, his love, his dedication, his salvation, his commitment, and even his desire to do the right.
Still, his "dedication" to his Baptist Brothers and Sisters in Odessa is somewhat similar to that dedication which Clarence Larkin has in his work, "The Book of Revelation." Clarence Larkin said that his work was the result of 25 years of study, and he quoted verbatim from Scofield. J. B. Hennigan tells us that his book is the result of 30 years of study, and his thesis is that of C. I. Scofield, from beginning to end -- not his elaboration or his interpretation of the Scriptures or the Word of God. He told me personally that for all of his ministry he has been using The Scofield Reference Bible, and that his present brown-covered one is his fourth.
We can know, therefore, that for more than 40 years, he has been spreading Scofield's unscriptural teaching abroad in Churches throughout some parts of West Texas, and elsewhere. Now, in retirement, he is continuing to do the same. Obviously, he deems the Scofield notes to be equal to Scripture. Sadly, most of those who sit before him seemingly have never learned any better, and they apparently are not learning any better.
The truth is, both Clarence Larkin and J. B. Hennigan give us what we may reference as "an unscriptural Laodiceanism"! This is certain proof that they are perhaps the unwitting spiritual slaves of C. I. Scofield's unscriptural notes. Though we may sometimes speak of such men being sincere, we can know, nonetheless, that they are not honestly providing us with their own personal insight into the Holy Word of God. The "revised dates" of the supposed beginning of "The Laodicean Church Period" should be positive proof to all thinking people that these men do not come to us as the "Messengers of God." They come to us, instead, as the spiritual and the literary slaves of a man by the name of C. I. Scofield. As we have noted above, C. I. Scofield apparently was out of touch with God and out of touch with the Word of God. We have demonstrated specifically that he rejected the words of Jesus in Matthew 24:36.
H. A. Ironsides
What we have seen above and what we shall see a little later is the pervasiveness of the Scofield fiction which has become "an apparent Christian way" for a great multitude of people. Within just a few years after Scofield had come forth with his first "Scofield Reference Bible" and his very deceptive and unscriptural notes, a goodly portion of the Christian world had been deceived. These apparently had concluded that C. I. Scofield spoke by inspiration, and that his "Scofield Notes" were to be considered as Scriptural truth.
I have before me a 64 page booklet that is titled, "The Midnight Cry." In the Preface to the fourth edition, we learn that it was written in 1914, just five years after the publication of "The Scofield Reference Bible," and that it was being revised in June of 1928, bringing "it more nearly up-to-date by adding new matter and making a few revisions." Nevertheless, the Scofield influence is yet very much in evidence. Though there is an attempted revision by some who followed him, and a continual up-dating and revising of some of the details, we read:
Ephesus, then, from this view-point, presents the Church in apostolic days -- an unworldly, called-out company who labored earnestly and well in making known the riches of grace, and who walk apart from iniquity; ... The second period followed apace, as set forth in the letter to Smyrna. It depicts, as by a few master-strokes, the tragedy of the Pagan persecutions ... Pergamos followed this, and gives us the period of the Church's relief from persecution and her subsequent union with the world. ... And Thyatira followed as the natural result. Things were going down-hill with fearful rapidity. Yet the church of the middle ages was rich in works of mercy and abounded in 'charity.' ... For Sardis, though it speaks of Protestantism and its great State churches, is not a true recovery. ... Philadelphia speaks of the great revival period of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, assuming different forms in different places ... Laodicea closes the series. It is the solemn arraignment of latitudinarian Christianity with its pride and folly, marked by impudent self-conceit and utter indifference to Christ (H. A. Ironsides, "The Midnight Cry," 1928 edition. Loizeaux Brothers, Inc. pp. 29-35).
I am reading from the Thirteenth Printing that was accomplished in 1954, but it is a continuation of the 1928 edition. Therein, Ironsides and those who helped with the various revisions tell us, "Reader, let me press my point again -- The world-wide gospel proclamation and world-wide apostasy at the same time are clear proofs that the end is close upon us! ... Another line of evidence is presented in the seven prophetic letters of Rev. two and three. For that they are prophetic, and not merely moral -- dispensational, and not simply local in their application -- is a fact now familiar to many earnest students of the Scriptures. The proof of this is found in their exact correspondence with the seven stages of the history of the Church on earth. This is incontrovertible, however self-styled optimists may object to it . . ." (Ibid. 28). And this was written originally in 1914, almost 80 years ago.
Even then, however, it was but a repetition of what C. I. Scofield had given in his note on Revelation 1:20 just five years earlier. It would seem that what can be determined to be unscriptural error is very easily passed from one great mind to that of another. After this sort of error has been perpetrated for a time, it begins to seem as though it were truth to others who delight in studying the Bible only in the light of the supposed wisdom of other men.
Evidently, soon after Scofield appended his notes to the Scriptures and devised what is called "The Scofield Reference Bible" even the scholars of that day were of the opinion that Scofield's notes were equal to the Scriptures. As we have seen earlier, C. I. Scofield's notes concerning the prophetic nature of the Seven Churches in the book of Revelation are nothing but the figment of his imagination. We may note also that his very fertile imagination evidently was greatly influenced by the imaginations of men such as J. A. Seiss and J. N. Darby.
Needless to say, all who view "the Seven Churches" in the Scriptural book of Revelation, chapters two and three, as being prophetic have concluded that Jesus did not know what He was talking about in Matthew 24:36. In Matthew 24:36, as we have noted several times, Jesus said that only His Father had any knowledge as to when He would return. This, dear friends, is the conclusion of Jesus, the Christ, the Lord of Glory; that God-Man. At the time that He was speaking, He was on His way to the place that would be called Golgotha where He would be crucified, buried and resurrected.
In chapter two of this work, "The Midnight Cry," H. A. Ironsides specifically states, "The Evidence that the Times of the Gentiles have nearly run their Course" (Ibid. 36)! Remember, if you will, that Ironsides wrote this in 1914, and it is now 1993! In chapter three of the revised edition of "The Midnight Cry," we read, "Evidence from Israel's History and Present State that Points to the Speedy Consummation of this Age" (Ibid. 54)! This obviously is an edited detail that was provided for this later edition after Israel became a State in 1948. In 1914, H. A. Ironsides knew absolutely nothing about Israel becoming a nation some 35 years later.
I shall not attempt to recount the many, many "endtime signs" that he gives as proof that the end was upon America and the World. Needless to say, H. A. Ironsides has been gone from the earthly scene for many decades, and NOT ONE OF HIS "ENDTIME SIGNS" has shown him to be an honest, or a Scriptural prophet. He proved himself to be just another one of the false "Church-Age Endtime Prophets." Through his books and through some of those who have followed his teachings, H. A. Ironsidesí unscriptural ministry is present among us, even in this year of 1993. Though a detailed discussion of his teachings would take us too far afield, we can know that in some of the conservative areas of theology, this man's teachings are still very prominent.
In 1938, one by the name of Milton B. Lindberg -- a supposedly very responsible evangelist who ministered in a wide variety of Churches -- came forth with his book, "Is Ours The Closing Generation of The Age?" Needless to say, he grabbed the attention of a multitude as he said, ". . . there develops a marked acceleration of those conditions relating to the end of the age" (p. 6, emphasis, RW). Already, Adolph Hitler was beginning his nefarious conquest, and Lindberg simply exploited some of the News Headlines to his own advantage. This is a practice that has become rather common among those who find it convenient to indulge in sensationalismís in order to exploit the people.
[As an aside, let me share with you the words of another. Notice the emphasized words just above, and then read the following ones that appeared in "The Midnight Call," a magazine put out by Arno Froese, dated may, 1992. One by the name of Arno Froese recently has given us what we might speak of as a "re-incarnated word"; namely, "The Accelerated Fulfillment of Bible Prophecy in Our Day" (Magazine, Front Cover). He, then, in 1992, provided a whole new set of "endtime signs."]
Under his subheading, "Signs of The Times," we find Milton B. Lindberg providing the people of his time with the following listing:
In the social world today, by way of general signs, one sees the sign of increased knowledge . . ., the sign of increased wickedness . . ., the sign of disobedience to parents . . ., the sign of increased travel . . ., the sign of heaped-up treasure, with strife between rich and poor . . ., the sign of perilous times . . ., and the sign of self indulgence. . . .
In the religious world, there is the prevalence of Spiritism . . ., the sign of apostasy from the faith . . ., the sign of false teachers within the church . . ., and the sign of Laodicean conditions. . . .
Politically, the signs of lawlessness . . ., distress among nations . . ., peace talk . . ., and elaborate military preparations . . .,specific developments, such as in Russia . . ., revival of the Roman Empire . . ., stirring in the Far East . . ., and reversion to the use of the guillotine ... as in Germany recently. Perhaps transcending them all is the sign of the Jews Rebuilding Palestine (Ibid. pp. 6-7).
All of these "endtime signs" were provided for the people who were living more than 50 years ago. He documented each one with Scripture, as though he were speaking truthfully, Scripturally, and honestly. He was leading the people of his time to suppose that he was a voice for God and bearing God's prophetic message for the people of his day. We can know without any question, however, that his reference to "the Laodicean Condition" was not Scriptural truth. This was nothing more nor less than evidence that he was following the intellectual nonsense of one C. I. Scofield who insisted that God did not know what He was doing when He failed to provide some prophetic detail or "endtime agenda" for "The Church Age."
We remind ourselves that in his note on Revelation 1:20 Scofield said, "it is incredible that in a prophecy covering the church period there should no such foreview." Even more incredibly, Scofield goes on to conclude, "These messages [Rev. 2 and 3] must contain that foreview if it is in the book at all, for the church does not appear on earth after [Revelation] 3:22." Then C. I. Scofield details what he apparently presumes to be or supposes is a pattern of prophetic church history based on the Seven Churches in Revelation, chapters two and three.
As we have seen above, he makes the Ephesian Church to be the first and the Laodicean Church to be the last, a detail that he did not find in the Word of God (See his note on Rev. 1:20). Milton B. Lindberg obviously accepted Scofield's false prophecy as truth. Perhaps we can be justified in saying that the man, Milton Lindberg, became the unwitting or the witting dupe of one who was questioning God's omniscience. Therefore, the man Lindberg proved himself to be a false prophet. He may have referenced the Scripture as he proclaimed his sensationalistic detail, but we can know that he was not finding his references in the Word of God. He was finding them in C. I. Scofield's notes.
Milton Lindberg only proved, however, as all others with such a mindset that he was using the Scriptures in order to lend some Biblical credence to what he may have known to be false prophecy. In any event, he was going about as a supposed messenger of God, when he really was a promoter of C. I. Scofield's false prophecy. Though he may have spoken with deep sincerity, he really was an enemy of God and of the Word of God. We can know today that Milton Lindberg was deceiving every person or soul whom he was reaching with his ministry. He was going forth as just another one of the helpless and obviously-hapless brainwashed followers of C. I. Scofield's unscriptural teaching.
Since then, we have been through W. W. II, the Atomic, Nuclear, and Hydrogen Bombs, the Korean Conflict, Viet Nam, and Desert Storm. Further, we have had men in space, and we have sent rocket probes to the farthest reaches of our Galaxy. In just a few years, it is expected that one of those probes will be leaving our Galaxy. Milton B. Lindberg may have appeared to the people of his day as a man of God who was involved in speaking the truth among a host of others who supposedly were speaking the truth. In reality, he was deceiving all whom he was reaching with his unscriptural teaching. He was doing so then as J. B. Hennigan has done in our day.
We can know that just as J. B. Hennigan is a false prophet today, so, in that day that is past, Lindberg was a false prophet. In rejecting Matthew 24:36 as truth, these questioned the words of Jesus and profited from their unscriptural sensationalismís. It is quite probable that most of those to whom Milton Lindberg was ministering have gone on into eternity, even as he.
Those "who loved to have it so" played the false prophet's little game of unscriptural words -- caring not at all for the Blessed Word of our Living God. The consciences of these apparently were seared, "as with a hot iron" (I Tim. 4:2). Still, their unscriptural ministry is present among us even in this hour by means of their writings and those whom they influenced or those who have been influenced by those whom they influenced.
In the following decades, there have been a very great host of those who have been called pastors, preachers, professors, and prophets who have persisted in indulging in similar sensationalismís. Even now, in 1993, the pulpits of our land, along with "the radio waves" and "the television screens" are very much alive with an ever-increasing, and a never-ending crescendo of "endtime" sensationalismís. Just as in the days when Jeremiah wept regarding the false prophets of his day, and later when J. B. Hennigan and Milton B. Lindberg went forth with their false prophecies, there is the continuing cry of Jeremiah, "My people love to have it so ... ."
More than 40 years ago, Oswald J. Smith was saying, "Is This The End? It may be. This could be the last generation, there may not be another" ("Is This The End?" Tract. p. 2). Does this not sound somewhat like that cry of the Montanist, Maximilla? Oswald J. Smith who pastored for decades in Canada has been gone from this mortality a long, long time. His generation has come and gone, another generation has intervened, and the end has not yet come. Though highly respected and in great demand as one who supposedly proclaimed the Word of God in all of its Glory, we see that he, too, was just another one of the false prophets who were in the business of deceiving the people.
Peter & Paul Lalonde
As recently as August 29, 1993, in their regular Television show, "This Week In Bible Prophecy," Peter and Paul Lalonde have continued this unscriptural and false generation cry. Apparently, these have not been able to understand the nature of the falseness of the prophecies in which they indulge, or perhaps they are not interested in understanding as long as they can benefit financially from their sensationalismís. Their word to their nation-wide audience was, "This is the generation that will see the return of Jesus Christ." Then, as they began advertising their TV Video, The Mark of The Beast, they said, "these are not rumors, just facts: 'This generation shall not pass.'"
In a letter which I received on this 31st day of August, 1993, that is dated, "August, 1993," we find some very interesting details. One "Dave Breese" who writes on the Letterhead of "This Week in Bible Prophecy says:
We believe that the Lord is using This Week in Bible Prophecy in a very special, very unique way in these last days. The vision that Peter and Paul [Lalonde, RW] have, to take the message of Bible prophecy to the unbeliever through a fast-paced entertaining format [emphasis, RW], is one of the most revolutionary ideas in Christian television today. It truly is Christian TV for the non-Christian. You and I know that there are not many programs that fit that bill. Their slogan, 'changing the face of Christian Television', says it all. . .
But, the going is very, very tough! ... That's why you and I, quietly and behind the scenes, must support this great outreach. ... This is not just another appeal. This is a crucial moment in the establishment of a worldwide ministry that has a role in endtime events that only the Lord Himself fully knows (Dave Breese, Letter, "August, 1993." pp. 1-2).
What was being done by men in some of the high religious places more than two generations ago, is now being done in our generation. Seemingly, in every generation, there is another great host of people who are ready and willing to be deceived by those who come in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, but whose testimony is contrary to His Word and to His Teaching. In this generation's sensationalismís, the emphasis is, "the message of Bible prophecy to the unbeliever through a fast-paced entertaining format ... ." Surely, this is a mockery of the Scriptural Truth wherein we learn of Him who "bore our sins in His Body, on the tree."
Things, it seems, never really change very much. Herbert Lockyer, the English Divine of the present era has influenced unnumbered millions of those who have been called Christian. Today, there probably is not a religious book store in America that is not in the process of selling one or more of Herbert Lockyer's many volumes.
Yet, more than 40 years ago, Herbert Lockyer was giving us some "endtime signs" or "endtime prophecies" for this Church Age. He lists these "endtime signs" as, "A Partial View of God, Undue Prominence of Women, Increase in Population, Progress of Mechanical Arts, Rejection of a God-Inspired Witness, Alliance of Church With The World, and Satanic Activity" (Are These The Last Days?. 1951. p. 5). Lockyer also has departed these earthly shores, so he may be just a bit wiser today there in the presence of our Savior.
Nevertheless, in every library in America in this year of 1993, there are some of Herbert Lockyer's books. The man who proved himself to be a false prophet time and time again is having an unending influence in the lives of millions of Christians. Millions of devotionals, Sunday School lessons, and preached messages from the pulpits of our land are very greatly influenced by this ministry of Herbert Lockyer who has already shown himself to be a Scofield-influenced enemy of the precious Word of God and of our Lord Jesus Christ. People, by the millions, have turned to his teachings instead of to the Holy Word of God.
William W. Orr is a man who has had a tremendous influence among many learned and unlearned Christians for the last 75 years and more as a scholar, a Bible-College Teacher, and a religious administrator. Nevertheless, we find him deeply involved in false prophecy. When William Orr spoke or wrote, many of the learned and many of the unlearned sat up and took notice. His prophecies, then, were broadcast far and wide by other scholars and by the students who had sat before him.
In one instance, he gave his endtime signs as being, "A growing Anticipation, Increased Travel, Increased Knowledge, Demon Doctrines, Grouping of Nations, Great Social Deterioration, Church Without Christ, Signs In the Skies, Growing Missionary Activity, World Population Explodes, the Jew Returns, Roman Church Increased, Protestant Union Advances, and Widespread Indifference" (Jesus Is Coming ... This Year? ... Signs of Christ's Soon Return," prior to the 1960's. pp. 8-27).
I have in my library several volumes of various sizes that have made William W. Orr a very strong influence in the lives of many people. Though he has been gone from the earthly scene for many years, his books, his teaching, and his false prophecy are still very prominent among us. As with some of those above, many people turn to William W. Orr as a man who was speaking truthfully for God. Yet, he is just another one of those whose life was caught-up in what we may reference as "Scofield teaching."
Whether he did so wittingly or whether he did it unwittingly, William W. Orr attempted to convince the multitudes that he had some special insight into the Word of God. Unfortunately, much of what he put forth as his insight into the Word of God was just C. I. Scofield's dispensational teaching. Often, he led those who were before him to suppose that he had some special insight into the truth concerning the end of time. When we look truthfully at his teaching, however, we learn that he was so ignorant of the Word of God that he did not even realize that he was taking a stand against the Lord of Glory who personally declared that men and angels, and even He, did not have any information concerning the time of the end for this Church Age.
Then there is another one by the name of John E. Douglas who has had a tremendous influence in the realm of missions and radio. For many long years, millions hung on to his words as though he were speaking truthfully and mightily for God. Yet, as so many, many others, he felt that he had to indulge in sensationalismís in order to ensure the loyalty of those who were supporting his ministry, especially to children and often to some of the disabled and ill in distant lands. As all of the others, however, his prophecies were no more exact or true than the false prophecies of others.
We find this man, John Douglas, listing some of his assured prophecies as proof that the end of time was really upon us. In 1960, that list included, "Signs of Christ's Imminent Return," "Return of The Jews to Their Homeland," "Apostasy, " "Dangerous or Perilous Times," "Mockers and Scoffers," "Persecution of The Saints," "The Outpouring of The Holy Ghost," "Knowledge and Travel," "Wars and Rumors of Wars" ... "World Leaders Talking Peace," "The Forming of Two Strong Confederacies," and "A Glorious Powerful Church" (When Will Jesus Come?, 1960. pp. 9-13).
Both Orr and Douglas are gone today, and -- since we may believe that both were redeemed -- we can know that they are in Heaven. They doubtless now know that they were false prophets who indulged in "sensational lying" to their own personal and professional advantage. Today, they both know that their "Church-Age Endtime Prophecies" were indicative that they had decided to reject the Word of Jesus which we find in Matthew 24:36. It may be that they have learned that they were "hirelings"!
In 1963, Wilbur M. Smith, a rather famed one from San Marino, California gave some prophecies that have proved to be false. This man was the author of one of the most powerful and wonderful books ever written by a mortal, "Therefore Stand." Nevertheless, he gave us what he deemed to be some of the Scriptural "endtime signs" for the conclusion of the Church Age. He likewise, apparently was heavily influenced by C. I. Scofield's teachings even though he was a learned man and a scholar in his own right.
He lists those "endtime signs" in the following manner, "The Sign From the Days of Noah," "The Sign from The Days of Lot," "The Sign of The Budding Fig Tree," "The Sign of Distress of nations," "The Sign of Perilous Times," "the Sign of Religious Apostasy," "The Sign of Scoffers," and "The Sign of One-World," and "One-Church Sect" ("Imminent Signs of The Times," 1963. pp. 2-35). We note particularly that these supposed prophecies are closely aligned with the Scripture.
His referencing of the Scriptures in connection with these "endtime prophecies" for the Church Age did not make them any more accurate than the false prophecies of others. That was just the Devil's very subtle and successful way of causing Christians to put their confidence in a man and his word instead of in God and in the Word of God. Wilbur Smith, today, is gone. All of his prophecies are still among us, but each one of those prophecies obviously is false.
Then, one who was called by the name of Paul R. Alderman, Jr. -- a Lumber Man, Teacher, and Founder of a flooring company, and often Evangelist, has given us, "God's Spotlight On Tomorrow." I am reading it in its fourth printing which was accomplished in 1964. In 1960, he provided the following complicated and somewhat confusing "endtime signs," as being proof that "The Church Age" would soon be coming to a conclusion:
Because Present Conditions in General Are Startlingly Similar to the Prophetic Description of 'The Last Days' Heralding His Return; Because Israel, God's 'Fig Tree,' is Budding Profusely Today; Because Russia of today Startlingly Answers to The Russia of Ezekiel 38-39; Because The 'Western Democracies' ... Increasingly Answer to The Prophetic Picture of The Revived Roman Empire; Because Christendom Today Is Strikingly Similar to Laodicea of Revelation 3; Because Christ Clearly and Positively Answered A Most Penetrating Question of His Disciples in Matthew 24; and Because All of these Things Are Occurring Simultaneously At a Most Significant Time in Man's History (Above noted, pp. 16-22).
It is evident that this man, along with others, was very deeply indebted to C. I. Scofield's notes. He is just another one of those religious and Christian leaders who looked to Scofield rather than to the Holy Word of God. These apparently were not aware that the 24th chapter of Matthew has an emphasis that they had missed entirely. That is, these Christian leaders seemingly had never studied this portion of the Scripture sufficiently to enable them to realize that Jesus generally was not dealing with the end of "The Church Age," especially in the first 35 verses of Matthew 24.
"The Time of Jacob's Trouble"
Rather, Jesus was dealing with "The time of Jacob's Trouble" or that of which we may speak as "The Seventieth Week of Daniel." This is a time in the future wherein some of those who will then be members of "The Twelve Tribes of Jacob" (See Rev. 7:3-8), members God's Earth People, will be God's final messengers to this world over which Satan is "The prince and the power of the air" (Eph. 2:2). It is this group of 144,000 from the twelve tribes of Jacob who will revive and continue that message of John, "The Gospel of The Kingdom"!
It seems apropos that this explanation should have taken place as Jesus "sat upon the Mount of Olives" (Mt. 24:3). Then, in verse 14 we read these crucial words, "And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come." [We may note that during this Church Age, the reaching of the world with the Gospel is on an ever smaller and smaller percentage scale. Whereas during the preaching of "The Gospel of The Kingdom" by the 144,000 Jewish or Israeli evangelists all nations will be reached.] We may relate this specifically to Revelation 7:3-8.
If we can recall the words of that last Old Testament Prophet, even "John, the Immerser," we note that one of his cries was, "The Kingdom of Heaven is at hand" (Mt. 3:2). Even in that distant day, he advised all of those who would listen that he was "the friend of the Bridegroom" (John 3:29), and therefore not a member of the Bride or one of those who would be redeemed during "The Church Age." If we can relate this word with that of Jesus, we can know that the word, "This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled" (Mt. 24:34), then, will be "the generation" that experiences "The Seventieth Week of Daniel," "The Time of Tribulation," or "The Time of Jacob's Trouble."
On the one hand, Matthew 24:14 and 24:34 demonstrate very clearly that Jesus is not referencing the conclusion of "The Church Age" at this Scriptural juncture. Therefore, any movement of peoples that can be expected to take place during "The Time of Jacob's Trouble" cannot pertain to "The Church Age." The presumption of some, then, that, "Israel's becoming a nation in 1948" is "a sign of the end" has to be a false one. In fact, the many false prophets who have made this appeal have had to alter the length of "their generation" a number of times, and some of them are continuing to do so.
We need to realize, also, that there can be no preaching of "The Gospel of the Kingdom" during The Church Age. Rather, as Jesus commanded and as Paul and others proclaimed, "The Gospel" of which we may speak in "The Church Age" relates to "A Called-out People." That is, those who are properly preaching "The Gospel of Christ which is the power of God unto salvation, to everyone who believes; to the Jew first and also to the Greek [Gentile]" (Rom. 1:16) are reaching the lost of this world with a message of redemption. We may say that those who are being redeemed in "The Church Age" will become a part of "The Bride of Christ" or the "heavenly people" who will be caught-up at the conclusion of "The Church Age." Jesus advises us to pray, "thy kingdom come" (Mt. 6:10)! Those of us in "The Church Age," then, are not involved in the establishment of "An Earthly kingdom," though we shall be involved in His Earthly Kingdom as His heavenly people.
On the other hand, Jesus explains in another verse, "When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place" (Mt. 24:15). A further emphasis concerning this very special time of tribulation is given in, "For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be" (Mt. 24:21).
In the latter detail, Jesus is making it very plain that the coming which He is discussing in this portion of what we know as Matthew 24 is to be A TIME OF GREAT JUDGMENT. This is made to be evident with His Words, "Then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven; and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory" (Mt. 24:30). This, then, is to be a time of judgment which is to take place here upon the earth -- not "a calling-out" or "a catching-up" of the redeemed. As an elaboration on Matthew 24:30, we may read in Revelation 19:15, "And out of His Mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it He should smite the nations, and He shall rule them with a rod of iron. . . ." Obviously, these words of JUDGMENT cannot apply to "The Church" or to "The Church Age."
Concerning The Church Age
Concerning "The Church," to all of those who are redeemed in this Church Age [remembering sinning Peter who was redeemed, Church-member Judas Iscariot who was lost (that is, "the son of perdition" who was never redeemed), and the Thief on the Cross who was redeemed, though never a Church Member] Jesus says in John 14:3, "If I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself . . ." This, then, is not a message of judgment. Instead, it is the Savior of these disciples assuring each one who has placed his faith in Him that He one day would receive them unto Himself in the dwellings that He has gone to prepare.
God provides a further explanation in Acts 1:11 with the words of "the two men in white." He does this to a portion of the assembled Church that Jesus had built while He was here upon the earth. These heavenly words are very specific, "This same Jesus who is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as you have seen Him go into heaven." That is, they promise that Jesus will return without any signs and without any notification, and certainly apart from any judgment. Clearly, the promise of these "heavenly visitors" is that Jesus would return to His Church "in like manner as you have seen Him go into heaven."
In I Corinthians 15:51-52, we have the words of the Apostle Paul in which he explains some of the details of this returning with this, "Behold I show you a mystery; we shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed; in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump; for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed." There is no word of judgment in this Scripture. Rather, this is a word related to that promise of assurance, "There is therefore, now, no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus" (Rom. 8:1).
Then, in I Thessalonians 4:16-17, we have these most definitive and crucial words, "For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel [the Archangel is not an angel of judgment], and with the trump of God; and the dead in Christ shall rise first; then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air; and so shall we ever be with the Lord." If words mean anything, as we have noted above, this catching-away of "The Church" is not one in which "the sign of the Son of man appears in the heaven," and it certainly is not a time in which Jesus is returning to "judge the earth" as noted in Matthew 24:30 and in Revelation 19:13-14.
Perhaps it would have been good if those who took it upon themselves to divide the Scriptures into verses and chapters a few decades ago could have realized that the passage, Matthew 24:1 through 35, relates to "The Time of Tribulation" or "The Time of Jacob's Trouble" -- not to "The Church Age." Had there been a better division of the Scriptures at this point, some of the confusion which has followed those who have attempted to provide "signs" for the conclusion of "The Church Age" might never have come into play in the thinking of men. It is certainly evident that in Matthew 24:36 through 51 God is dealing with another subject and a totally different time frame. This is something that those who do not really understand the first 35 verses of this chapter generally cannot accept.
Two Different Periods
"The Church Age" and "The Time of Jacob's Trouble," then, speak to two different periods of earthly time. As we have noted in John 14:3 and Acts 1:11, and elsewhere, the Return of Jesus to or for His Church will be in quietness. Whereas God is very specific that when Jesus comes to JUDGE THE EARTH AND THE PEOPLE IN IT, "then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven; then shall all of the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory" (Mt. 24:30). Our Lord is most specific that it is at that time that, "He shall send his angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other" (Mt. 24:31).
That this relates to what we may speak of as His Earth People is evident from as long ago as Deuteronomy 30:4-5. In that distant day, Moses advised those who had accompanied him out of Egypt, "If any of thine be driven out unto the outmost parts of heaven, from thence will the Lord thy God gather thee ... And the Lord thy God will bring thee into the land that thy fathers possessed, and thou shalt possess it." Jesus documents this detail of Judgment for us, also, in Mark 13:27, following an earlier word, "In those days, after that tribulation" (Mk.13:24), with the word, "Then shall he send his angels, and shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from the uttermost part of the earth to the uttermost part of heaven." In the following verse 28, Jesus, also, relates "the parable of the fig tree" to this time of judgment -- not to "The Church Age."
Those of us of "The Church Age" have no such earthly promises. We can know, however, that those who are "caught-up" or "caught-away" at the time of His Return In The Clouds [See Acts 1:11) at the conclusion of "The Church Age" will return with Him to rule and reign when He sets up His Kingdom here upon the earth. This is demonstrated for us in the Scripture, "And the armies that were in Heaven followed Him upon white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean. And out of His Mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it He should smite the nations; and He shall rule them with a rod of iron . . ." ( Rev. 19:13-14).
Friday, October 17, 2008 01:39:55
Edited for Internet October 22, 2000
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