Saturday, November 27, 2010

The Martin Luther of Hyperpreterism: Rivers Responds

Hyperpreterism (sometimes called Full Preterism) is a theological perspective and movement that is considered to have began in the 1970s after the rogue "church of Christ" minister named Max King published a series of books advocating the view. Basically, the view is a combination of the following claims or points:

  1. Jesus came back once in for all in the first-century (AD70).
  2. The collective resurrection of believers occurred in the first-century.
  3. The judgment of the wicked and righteous occurred in the first-century.
  4. There will be no end of sin or culmination of God's plan for the earth.

I had previously done a podcast with a Full-Hyperpreterist in June 2010, called "The Consistent Conclusions of Full/Hyperpreterism where I discussed with a hyperpreterist that goes by the name "Rivers of Eden" (ROE), the consistent conclusions of the hyperpreterist view, which is that God gathered all Elect and is thus effectively done with humanity and earth. Although I overall disagree with hyperpreterism, I agree that its consistent conclusion is that if God's plan was to gather the Elect AND we assume that happened in AD70, then there is no more to the story.

Since that podcast, the Full-Hyperpreterist community has been trying to stifle or re-image ROEs presentations. First, in early November 2010 ROE was invited to a hyperpreterist podcast by Mike Loomis of where Loomis had ROE basically present the same topics discussed in the June 2010 here on TKC. At first it looked as if Loomis was simply allowing ROE to present a different "perspective" on the full-hyperpreterist theme However since that first and a sub-sequential podcast on, Loomis has had lots of backlash, including one non-hyperpreterist program canceling their show on the network (source). And from his fellow full-hyperpreterists, Loomis has also had backlash. For example, hyperpreterist Mike Sullivan, speaking to the issue of backlash:

"When is Mike [Loomis] going to learn and have some kind of accountability? Until then, this kind of stuff will just continue. Sad indeed." -- (source)
Loomis has since showed his TRUE goal for having ROE outline his view was NOT to present a different "perspective" but to try to use ROE as the fall guy or escape goat for when people call Loomis' and his fellow "full preterists" as hyperpreterists. Loomis said, speaking to another hyperpreterist named Duncan:

"The way I look at it Duncan...I succeeded in one of my goals. I've now succeeded at cataloging a true hyper-preterist so that when people try to call us that we can simply point them in the direction of ROE's own testimony demonstrating that HP we are not." -- (source)
HOWEVER, originally, before the backlash Loomis defended ROE by saying this about him:

"What he is suggesting might not be an easy pill to swallow and it might not even be the right one…But that doesn’t change the fact that he has been and continues to allow the Word to direct him wherever the truth might lead.

And the one thing I appreciate the most about him is that his posts are supported solely by scripture. No tradition…No creeds…Just the scriptures interpreting themselves and utilizing the original languages in support of his views...I want to follow the Truth wherever it may lead me. I want to test all things. Whether the journey is comfortable or not…The Truth has nothing to fear from honest investigation. -- (source)
Granted, Loomis has a reputation, even among his own hyperpreterists as being a flip-flopper and not able to commit to any single view, but Loomis' greatly contrasted comments about ROE seem to indicate someone who is trying to throw ROE under the bus because of backlash.

Further, another hyperpreterist after hearing ROEs presentation stated this to hyperpreterist leader Sam Frost:

"Just thought that you may be interested to know that I have finally come off the fence, and I jumped firmly down onto your side of it.

Do you know what finally clinched it for me? It was Rivers Of Eden, and the talk he gave to Michael Loomis. He was incredibly clear and erudite and presented his case well, and as a result I saw clearly for the first time the consequence of taking the 'all fulfilled' to it's logical end, and it is not pretty." -- (source - Ken Singleton)
Frost's "side of the fence" has been increasingly modifying its hyperpreterism to be more like historic post-millennialism, so much so that many of Frost's fellow hyperpreterists claim he is no longer a "full preterist". At any rate, notice that the individual quoted doesn't deny that ROEs conclusions correct, just that they are "not pretty". Compare that with Loomis' comment about going wherever his "journey" takes him, even if it's "not comfortable". Which is it?

Lastly, hyperpreterist debatesman, Don Preston who typically avoids getting involved in the various factional disagreements of the movement quickly responded to ROEs presentations. (ROEs presentations on were aired Nov 10 and Nov 18). Preston, along with fellow hyperpreterist speaker William Bell aired a response on on Nov 23.

If the full-hyperpreterists are going to get Preston to come out of the woodwork on this, then you know it is causing issues within the movement.

Much of this podcast is responding to the full-hyperpreterist response and especially to Preston's objections.

LISTEN to the Podcast

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