Day of Christ

The Day of Christ begins with the appearing (the epiphaneia) and kingdom (basileia ) of Jesus Christ (2 Tim.4:1) and the blazing forth of the glory of the great God, even our Savior Jesus Christ (Titus 2:13). This is when the hope of the calling of the Mystery is realized. This is when our faith gives way to sight. This is the next event on God's prophetic clock. This is when Christ Jesus, in His role as the Head of the high calling, convenes [calls into session] His Ecclesia (Church) which is His Body. As the Great Convoker, He, alone, calls His Ecclesia into session. This marks His assumption of sovereignty over the nations. Those who have been memberd into “the high calling of God in Christ Jesus” will either be raised out from among the dead, or will be changed from mortal to immortal, and will take their place, or station, in His Government. Concurrently with the many events taking place when Christ Jesus assumes sovereignty over mankind and the nations, the Holy Spirit (the Comforter) will actively and aggressively restrain evil (John 16:7-13). People who sin will die for their own sin (Jer. 31:30). The Spirit will hinder transgressions because man’s conscience will have been quickened (made alive). The Day of Christ is synonymous with all of the above, including the Kingdom of God, and comes before the tribulation and the second coming (Parousia) of Christ. During the Day of Christ, heaven and earth will be governed by Christ Jesus from His heavenly Throne. This dispensation is set in contrast to the Millennium or the Day of the Lord. To say the two are the same is to say that “one-plus-one equals one.” Most all Christians realize that the Day of the Lord (i.e. the Tribulation and the Millennium) begins with revolution, bloodshed and violence which will be an unprecedented event in all of human history. The Old Testament has a lot to say about this Day—the Day of the LORD. Isaiah speaks about the Lord's imposition upon the world of His Millennial Rule; “For, behold, the LORD will come with fire, and with His chariots like a whirlwind, to render His anger with wrath, and His rebuke with flames of fire. For by fire and by His sword will the Lord plead with all flesh: and the slain of the Lord will be many” (Isa. 66:15-16). Psalm 50:3 says; "Our God shall come, and shall not keep silence: A fire shall devour before Him, and it shall be very tempestuous round about Him." Psalm 97:3; “A fire goeth before Him, and burneth up His enemies round about.” These verses relate to Jesus Christ Personally returning to earth to put an end to the nation’s revolt against His Rule from heaven (2 Thess. 2:1-12). When the Kingdom of God comes to Israel, it comes silently, “without observation” (Lu.17:22). It will not come suddenly or dramatically. Its’ coming is likened; “as if a man should cast seed into the ground; And should sleep, and rise night and day, and the seed should spring and grow up, he knoweth not how. For the earth bringeth forth fruit of herself; first the blade, then the ear, after that the full corn in the ear” (Mk. 4:26-28). When the Kingdom comes, it comes without calamity with no harm being done to anyone. Notice a much overlooked passage; “He shall not strive, nor cry; neither shall any man hear His voice in the streets. A bruised reed shall He not break, and smoking flax shall He not quench, till He send forth judgment unto victory” (Matt.12:19-20). Matthew quotes from Isaiah 42:1-4 which informs us that the Kingdom (i.e God’s Government) begins with the Gentile nations. Israel will not be a nation at this time. They will still be scattered, or dispersed, among the nations. While ruling over the nations, the Lord begins His work of re-gathering the Jews. Over time, He leads them back to the Promised Land ─as believers. No unbelieving Jew will be brought back to Palestine; no, not one! The unbelieving will remain scattered among the nations. [This brings up the question; ‘What about the Israel that now is?’ All we’ll say for now is; the present Israel is not of God’s doing. When He brings them back, there will be no disputes regarding borders or whose land it is]. “And I will purge out from among you the rebels, and them that transgress against me: I will bring them forth out of the country where they sojourn, and they shall not enter into the land of Israel: and ye shall know that I am the LORD” (Ezk.20:38). If words have any meaning, then we must conclude that something begins silently, mysteriously, without observation, without strife, without Christ being heard, and without damage being inflicted. On the other hand, something else begins (i.e. the Lord’s Day) with a colossal display of vengeance, wrath, and cataclysmic punishment which will be openly displayed. It is a contradiction to insist that the two descriptions relate to the beginning of the same event. In plainer words, the Prophetic Word informs us that there is coming the Day of Christ which is another term for the coming Kingdom of God. We are met with a non-Scriptural term, The Millennium, which relates to the 1000 year reign of Christ upon the earth. The Biblical term for this is the Day of the Lord. It is essential to distinguish between the two. The Holy Spirit does. We should do so, also. If we force all truths connected to the Day of Christ into the Day of the Lord, the result is utter confusion. Not only that, but we rob the Lord Jesus Christ of His Day of Exaltation. During the Day of Christ, He will draw, or compel, all men unto Himself. He will be exalted from the earth as every knee shall bow and every tongue shall confess that He is Lord to the Glory of God the Father. His Day begins with His “appearing and Kingdom,” and He begins to judge the quick and the dead. (2 Tim.4:1). This is when the glory of the great God, even Jesus Christ our Savior, blazes forth (Titus 2:13). Isaiah speaks of this event in 40:5; “And the glory of the LORD shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together” and at the same time. What is seen is the glory of the LORD, not the LORD descending from Heaven; to this, Numbers 14:21 agrees; “But truly as I live, all the earth shall be filled with the glory of the LORD.” When the Kingdom comes, “the earth shall be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the LORD, as the waters covers the sea” (Hab.2:14). The Psalmist says; “And blessed be His glorious Name forever: and let the whole earth be filled with His glory” (72:19). The world will experience the revealing of His Glory without Christ Jesus leaving His Heavenly Throne. The shining forth of the glory of God takes place before the Day of the LORD. It is noted in Isaiah's vision that the seraphim see Christ's Day and say; “Holy, holy, holy, is the LORD of Hosts: the earth is full of His glory.” During the Day of Christ, the “times of refreshing comes from the presence of the LORD.” All things are rejuvenated while the Heavens retain Christ (Acts 3:19-21). The pristine, pre-Noah flood conditions will be re-created (Isa. 65:17; 66:22). When the Day of Christ begins, all of mankind will be enlightened by the Holy Spirit and realize that Jesus Christ is LORD! Christ will begin His benevolent rule of the world. Then, He will begin converting His ancient people, Israel. Read Ezekiel 20:23-33, and notice how the Lord begins a work in their hearts and will lead them back into the Holy Land as a Christ-believing people. As the Day of Christ draws to a close, the restraints of the Spirit are gradually withdrawn.

Friday, May 15, 2015

King James Only Is False ignorance

King James Onlyism

I.  What is KJV Onlyism?

A. Does NOT refer to preference for King James Version over other translations.

B. DOES refer to people who insist:

1. you are not a real Christian if you use any other translation

2. You may still be Christian, but all other translations are Satanic.
C. First defense against KJV Onlyism is the gospel.

Hebrews 10:10-14

1. To ground righteousness upon one’s use of a translation is an act of idolatry

a. righteousness is grounded instead upon the cross of Christ

“through the offering of the body of Christ”. Not through the offering of a translation. “for by a single offering He has perfected for all time”. Not, for by a single translation He has perfected.

b. The apostles did not say we come preaching the KJV.   The first readers of the New Testament did not even have a New Testament, much less a King James translation. The people in Acts 2 did not have an Acts 3 when Peter preached to them.

D. Second defense is to counter their arguments with historical fact. This requires knowledge of how and why translations are produced.

II. Why make translations?

A. The Great Commission

1. Matthew 28:16-19

B. One way the apostles took the gospel to the nations was through the transmission of their writings. They encouraged Christians to make copies of theirs writings and to then pass them on to other believers.

1. Colossians 4:16-17

C. Christians in every region of Asia Minor continued to make copies of the epistles and gospels so that by the time the first century came to a close there were an untold number of copies floating around Asia Minor.

D. None of these copies survive today. None of the original writings have survived either. Original writings are called “autographs.”  Instead, what we have today are copies of the copies of the copies of the copies of the autographs.

III.  The Manuscripts

A. Christian scribes did their best, but still some handwriting was poor, contractions could be mistaken, letters or words could be omitted accidentally. Some scribes tried to harmonize passages, while others abbreviated their words. Making a copy was more difficult and time consuming because everything had to be done by hand.  These mistakes Christian scribes sometimes made are called “variations”

B. The copies are not inspired. Only the autographs are inspired.  God did not breath out the copies.  This is why the copies contain mistakes.

C. The result of having all these copies with variations is that no two of the nearly 6,000 Greek copies of the New Testament are exactly alike. The closest relationship between any two copies average from between six to ten variations per chapter.

D. Does this mean we cannot know the infallible word of God today? NO, IT DOES NOT!

95% of the variations have no support, meaning it is obvious they do not belong. Of the remaining 5%, 95% of those cause no appreciable difference in the sense of the passages where they occur. This means they do not change the meaning of the passage. The differences are so minor, so insignificant, that we can be sure not a single doctrine, not a single statement of fact, not a single command or exhortation, has been missed in our translations.

E. In addition, New Testament manuscripts are characterized by an aggressively tenacious textual drift. This means that once a variation occurs, that variation tends to remain in all future manuscripts, even in those that appear in other areas at a later date. By simply comparing copies that do not have the variation to copies that do, we can discover how old the copy is and whether the change is genuinely part of the passage or something that someone added.

So the problem is not that we cannot know the original, inspired, inerrant word of God. We can indeed! The problem is that we have more than only His inerrant word.

F. Why did God do it like this? Why not commit the transmission of the New Testament to the care of one person or one group of people as He had done with the Old Testament?

1. Jews were distrusted. They had, after all, crucified the Lord of glory. Are you going to trust someone who has crucified the Lord to preserve the words of the Lord without altering them?

2. Better that one person or group has no control over the transmission of ancient text.

The Catholic Church tried it. They had control over the Latin Vulgate.  The result is the Vulgate had become so corrupted that some who could read Greek, like Thomas Linacre, one of the first to translate the Vulgate into English, said to a friend, ““Either this (the original Greek) is not the Gospel… or we are not Christians.”

3. What we instead have are copies being made all over Asia Minor and parts of Africa, with no one person controlling the process.

IV. Three major types of text types.

A. Byzantine Text Type – Byzantians spoke Latin, but they used Greek in all their religious practices. They made copies of the Bible that have survived to this day. These manuscripts are believed to have been produced in or around the area of Antioch. They are newer than the Alexandrian text type, circa 5th century.

B. Alexandrian Text Type – these are much older manuscripts dating back to the 3rd and early 4th century. Discovered in the 19th century. They are generally believed to have been produced in or around the area of Alexandria, Egypt.

C. Western Text Type

D. Differences
1. Alexandrian are less grammatically polished.
2. Alexandrian text type dates back to an archetype that has been dated to the early 2nd century.
3. Other manuscripts older than the Byzantine have Alexandrian readings.
4. Byzantine are grammatically polished and smooth which means they have more words than the Alexandrian
5. Byzantine show effort to harmonize parallel passages and make the Bible more readable.
6. Byzantine were widely distributed throughout the empire, making it the standard, authoritative text of the empire, so there are more available manuscripts.
7. Byzantine contains the story of the woman caught in adultery and final verses of Mark. Alexandrian do not.

These differences have most scholars convinced the Byzantine’s scribes added to the copies in order to produce a more smooth reading.

E. Example of variation in Alexandrian and Byzantine.

(Byzantine) Revelation 22:19 “God shall take away his part out of the book of life.’’

(Alexandria) Revelation 22:19 “God shall take away his part out of the tree of life.’’

There is no extant manuscript before the Byzantine tradition that says book of life. Byzantine was the first to say it, implying the Byzantine scribes accidentally changed tree to book.

IV. From manuscripts to the KJV

A. Printed Text vs manuscript
1. After compiling and piecing together all these manuscripts, and after weeding out the copy errors, scholars then print and publish a Greek New Testament. All English translations, including the KJV are translations of one of these texts.

B. Three (3) major Greek New Testament texts from which English translations of the New Testament are

1. Textus Receptus
a. Erasmus one of the first to provide the world with a Greek New Testament. Used an estimated 9 manuscripts including some from Byzantine tradition that he found in the region of Basle (city in Switzerland). Eventually his became the standard of its time. Luther used it. (1400’s)

b. a few decades later, Theodore Beza (Calvin’s friend) produced one using Erasmus’ work as his starting point

c. Robert Stephanus produced one that was based on Erasmus’ and Beza’s work. This is the text the KJV translated (1550)

d. Finally, Abraham and Bonaventure Elzevir of Leiden, produced a second edition of their Greek text in 1633. In the publisher’s preface, they wrote the following words in Latin: “the reader now has the text that is received by all.” In Latin, the words text received is Textus Receptus.

The name Textus Receptus is actually a misnomer. It refers not only the Elzevir brother’s text, but rather to all the texts produced by Erasmus, Stephanus, Beza and a few others. All these texts follow in the line of the Byzantine tradition. This is why it is also called the Majority Text, because it has more published texts in its library.

e. The King James Version and the New King James
Both versions are translations of the Textus Receptus.

2. Second major Greek New Testament text is the Westcott and Hort “New Testament in Original Greek”. Was the first text to compile manuscripts from the Alexandrian tradition. Published in 1881. Was the basis for the Revised Standard Version and American Standard Version.

3. Third major Greek New Testament text is the Nestle-Aland Critical Text. Also compiled manuscripts from Alexandrian traditions, but also considers manuscripts from Byzantine and other traditions. Has become known today as the critical text and is the basis for most of today’s modern English translations.

There is 95% agreement between all three Greek texts. However, KJV Onlyists insist that both the Nestle-Aland and the Westcott and Hort texts are the wicked work of evil men who worshiped at the altar of New Age beliefs. This is just complete nonsense.

Revelation 22:19. KJV and New KJV are still the only translations today that continue to say book of life rather than tree of life.

Little-known fact about the KJV. For the past 200 years, all King James Version Bibles published in America are actually the 1769 Baskerville spelling and wording revision of the 1611 edition. The original “1611” preface is deceivingly included in this edition by the publishers, and no mention of the fact that it is really the 1769 version is to be found anywhere on its pages, because the publisher is afraid this could hurt sales. The only way to obtain a true, unaltered 1611 version is to purchase a reproduction of the original 1611 King James Bible.

Another little known fact about the KJV is that up until the 1880’s the KJV included the Apocrypha! The original 1611 King James contained the Apocrypha, and King James threatened anyone who dared to print the Bible without the Apocrypha with heavy fines and a year in jail. The Revised Standard Version, based upon the Westcott and Hort texts, was the first Protestant Bible to omit the Apocrypha.

VI. So What’s the Big Deal?

Proverbs 30:5-6
Revelation 22:18-19

KJV ONLY QUOTE: “Those readings in the Textus Receptus which have weak support are indicated in the side reference column as being opposed by both Critical and Majority Texts. Since the 1880s most contemporary translations of the New Testament have relied upon a relatively few manuscripts discovered chiefly in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Such translations depend primarily on two manuscripts, Codex Vaticanus and Codex Sinaiticus, because of their greater age. The Greek text obtained by using these sources and the related papyri (our most ancient manuscripts) is known as the Alexandrian Text. However, some scholars have grounds for doubting the faithfulness of Vaticanus and Sinaiticus, since they often disagree with one another, and Sinaiticus exhibits excessive omission.”

A. Every manuscript contains variations that disagree with every other manuscript, Alexandrian and Byzantine traditions included. Even the Greek texts based upon the Byzantine traditions disagree with themselves. Erasmus disagrees in some points with Beza, Beza disagrees in some points with Stephanus and so on. To insist the Alexandrian manuscripts are corrupt because they disagree with each other is a very deceitful argument that plainly ignores the disagreements which occur within the line of the Textus Receptus itself.   Atheists use this fact to attack Christians.  KJV Onlyists do not help matters when they ignore these facts.

B. Of course the Vaticanus and Sinaiticus contain omissions. They are of the Alexandrian text type. The Alexandrian scribes did not add to the text in an effort to polish the language and make certain passages more readable. That is, they did not add to the word of God, so of course they contain less text than the Byzantine manuscripts do. Again, the argument is very deceitful.

C. The Textus Receptus is both THE majority text and a critical text, so to insist it contains notes from the majority text and critical text that oppose variations in the TR that have weak support is an argument based on error.

D. The charge that today’s two Greek texts rely upon a relatively few manuscripts is just patently false.  The argument is an appeal to the masses.  Just because there are more Byzantine manuscripts does not mean they are more accurate than the Alexandrian.

KJV ONLY QUOTE: “I do not buy the line that the inerrant word of God is found only in the originals – which nobody has. I know that God has the power to preserve His word and He wouldn’t leave us out in the dark with an imperfect translation. In the authorized King James Version God assembled, and moved with His Spirit, a team of some of the world’s best scholars to translate His word in to the world’s most popular language, English.” –
E. God did not breath out the copies of His word. He did not inspire legions of scribes. This is why the copies are imperfect. They contain additions, subtractions, and contradictions. This is also why the warning in Revelation 22 and Proverbs 30 do not apply to them. They are not His inerrant, inspired word!

F. To mark the KJV as inerrant and inspired is to insist the scholars who pieced together the Greek text upon which the KJV was based were Godly men. Erasmus was not a Godly man. He fully denied God’s sovereignty over man’s will and was, in fact, the very object of Luther’s disdain in Luther’s “The Bondage of the Will” (yes, that Erasmus!). He even dedicated the first edition of his Greek text to the pope!

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