Friday, January 1, 2010

Dear Hyperpreterist Readers...

With the recent lockdown of the SGP-hyperpreterist compound, the relegating of hyperpreterists to a specific section of CARM forums, & the general “see-you-coming” tone of most Christian forums I know many hyperpreterists are just iching for any interaction.  Since most of you are newer to the hyperpreterist movement, you really don’t know anything about the history of the movement & its leaders…nor do you seem to care.  But I did want to help you out so that you can STOP REPEATING THE FALSEHOODS about Christians & I want to help you appear to be more informed:

1. Historic Christianity is NOT called “Futurism”.  There really is no such thing since ALL Christians believe at least some N.T. prophecy is past (e.g. preterite = past) & since NO Christian believes all things are yet future.  The designation of “Futurism” is more of an attempt to make hyperpreterism look like it is at least on a level playing field.  It is not.
2. Calling anyone a “Hyper-Futurist” is just plain…well stolid since Hyper means beyond the original scope & intent (ref).  However, since historic preterism existed BEFORE HYPER-preterism, etymologically speaking, it is accurate to call your belief HYPER since it goes beyond the original intent & scope of historic preterism.
3. You are just as “CREEDAL” as anyone else since creed simply means “I believe” (ref).  The problem is, your beliefs don’t line up with anything that has EVER been considered Christian.  So, stop calling people “creedalists” or certainly stop using the designation “Hyper-creedalists”.  That is as about irrational as calling someone a Hyper-Futurist & just smacks of 4th grade na-na-gotcha-back name-calling.
4. Learn the difference between the designations of “damnable” & “damned”.  I’m not certain I’ve seen anyone, at least on this site claim hyperpreterists are damned & going to hell.  It is NOT our place to say so.  However, a teaching can be “damnable” in that it is destructive to ones spiritual welfare even if it may not affect their ultimate salvation.  So, stop claiming we say you’re going to hell.  You have no idea what you are talking about.  And by the way, just because hyperpreterism may NOT affect a person’s salvation, doesn’t mean its okey-dokey to teach a false doctrine.
5. Stop claiming that the Church has never had a unified, systematic eschatology.  That is just blatantly untrue.  Historic Christianity, whether you look at pre-Roman Catholic, Roman Catholic, Greek/Eastern Orthodox, Syrian, Protestant/Reformed, Anabaptist, or Modern Evangelical have ALL agreed on the EXACT 4 things hyperpreterism denies; (1) Jesus’ yet future return (2) yet future bodily resurrection of the believers (3) yet future judgment of the wicked & righteous (4) yet future culmination of history.  The Church has most certainly had an eschatology for over 2000 years & it is NOT a “gray area”.  Whereas Christians have even disagreed over the impetus of salvation, they have yet been in unison on those 4 things hyperpreterism denies.  I’d call that significant.
6. Stop using the line that there has never been a council on eschatology; since (1) councils were generally held in response to some major heresy & since as point #5 shows, historic Christianity has been unified on eschatology, there would have been no reason to hold a specific council.  By repeating this line, you show how misinformed you are on why councils were held.  (2) We all know, that if a council was held today that hyperpreterism would be the Arianism of the modern age AND you guys would still not accept the council’s ruling since you obviously think 2000 years worth of unified Christian eschatology can be discarded.  So stop the grandstanding.
7. Stop claiming people can’t debate you or answer you, or aren’t reading/understanding their Bible. Do you realize how arrogant you sound?  I mean, look if you guys aren’t going to listen to 2000 years of unified historic Christian interpretation & testimony then why would you listen to just another of those same Christians today?  Nothing we say to you is going to change what you think you know…you bought into a “radical paradigm shift” remember?
8. Stop with the out of context proof-texting.  All your quoting of verses like Matt 16:27 & Heb 9:28 & such isn’t proving anything.  Don’t you know all beliefs are first & foremost propositional before they are evidential?  The proposition of hyperpreterism, whether you guys admit to it or not, is that for some reason God was unable or unwilling to maintain within His Church a most basic understanding of His eschatological plan.  You MUST believe that 2000 years of Christians were either buffoons or there has been some conspiracy to cover up your supposed view all this time.
9. Do you know how irrational it sounds when you claim historic Christians are “heretics” or that we are following another Gospel?  I mean, there you go again defaming all of Christianity that has come before.  Do you know how cultic that makes you look?  Do you even care?
10. Stop appealing to Martin Luther & the other Reformers.  You are NOT their theological kinsmen.  The Reformers would have rejected you & your SOLO Scriptura mindset as much as the Reformers rejected the Anabaptists & other “radical reformers” who in their day, like you now wanted to chuck it all & start over with their own private interpretations (ref)
11. Stop appealing to Gordon Clark & other such theologians — and especially stop claiming you are using “Clarkian logic” since Clark using his own logic did NOT conclude anything like hyperpreterism (ref).  Your use of these guys just shows how desperately you want to be accepted within historic Christianity when your beliefs are clearly NOT Christian.
12. Stop using the “woe is me, look how persecuted” line — you sound like Mormons & JWs.  Most Christians long ago stop considering those groups anything akin to Christianity.  Hyperpreterism is fairly new, but soon enough it will be treated just like Mormonism & JWs.  Get used to it.
13. At least have the honesty to say, “Yep, we’re nothing like any kind of Christianity”.  I mean, even the Emergents/Postmodernists are honest enough to claim they are making a “new kind of Christian” (ref).  Since what you are advocating is less like Christianity than even what the Emergents are trying to pass off, the least you could do is admit that much, don’t you think?
14. Stop merely calling yourselves “Preterists”.  You know, or at least SHOULD know that a form of preterism existed BEFORE the form you advocate.  At least make some distinction.  Early on you guys were calling it “Covenant Eschatology” & then “Full Preterism”, one group even trademarked a spiffy new term called “Transmillennialism” (ref).  Be more creative & think of a more descriptive name.  How about, “We’re-right-&-2000-years-of-Christianity-is-wrongism” Eh, maybe too long, but you get the idea.
15. Realize that the so-called “liberal hyperpreterists” are actually the most consistent form of hyperpreterists.  If you really want to be a good hyperpreterist, you should become a universalist or adopt some whacked out form of Creationism that claims Genesis isn’t about the cosmological creation, that Adam wasn’t the first created human, & that possibly the reference to animals in Genesis & especially on Noah’s Ark were really types of people. (ref)
16. Get to know some of the history & key players in the hyperpreterist movement.  When I or others engage you & you have no idea of your own history & those who helped form it, it makes you look really bad.  Maybe try going here — that site does a good job & who knows, maybe you’ll be able to make out  all 47 repeat hyperpreterist conference attendees.
Well, I hope these points will help you sound more informed next time you feel the need to speak up.  I’m here to help.

No comments: