October 30, 2002
THE DOG THAT DIDN'T BARK:
(Terry Gross, October 28, 2002, NPR)
Novelist Tim Lahaye
Novelist Tim Lahaye is the co-author of the popular Left Behind series. The books are apocalyptic Christian thrillers. The tenth and latest book is The Remnant, which debuted at the top of the New York Times bestseller list. Lahaye is also the former co-chairman of Jack Kemp's presidential campaign, was on the original board of directors of the Moral Majority and was an organizer of the Council for National Policy which has been called "the most powerful conservative organization in America you've never heard of."
Journalist Gershom Gorenberg
Journalist Gershom Gorenberg is an associate editor and columnist for The Jerusalem Report and a regular contributor to The New Republic. He's the author of The End of Days: Fundamentalism and the Struggle for the Temple Mount
This was a fascinating, though odd, hour of radio, well worth your listening. In the first half hour, Ms Gross could barely contain her skepticism, even contempt, while Mr. LaHaye politely and earnestly answered her every bewildered question. Towards the end of the interview there's a hiilarious moment when Mr. LaHaye tells her about stopping the Dalai Lama in a hallway and asking him if he knows the story of Jesus Christ. You can as easily imagine the look of horror on her face as you can imagine her Volvo with the "Free Tibet" bumper sticker.
Posted by Orrin Judd at October 30, 2002 9:01 PM
Nice post. Surprised you didn't mention the Roman Catholic position, which does say that the Jews are our "elder brothers." Here are a couple comments JPII has said in the past:
This dialogical attitude between Christians and Jews not only expresses the general value of interreligious dialogue, but also the long journey they share leading from the Old to the New Testament. There is a long period of salvation history which Christians and Jews can view together. "The Jewish faith", in fact, "unlike other non-Christian religions, is already a response to God's revelation in the Old Covenant" (CCC, n. 839).
Today the courageous witness of faith should also mark the collaboration of Christians and Jews in proclaiming and realizing God's saving plan for all humanity. If his plan is interpreted in a different way regarding the acceptance of Christ, this obviously involves a crucial difference which is at the very origin of Christianity itself, but does not change the fact that there are still many elements in common
But then of course, the Roman Catholic doesn't believe in the theology of the Rapture either.
WRT to the doctrines of Rapture or Pergatory and Paradise, the Catholic and Protestant Churches don't speculate on what "time" is for the dead either. If time for the dead does not exist in a serial continuum of experience, but is another dimension like the spatial ones, then a few millenia in Purgatory or a wait until the Rapture will have equivalent temporal meaning. Asides from the decision to accept God or not, how the soul mechanically gets to heaven is somewhat scholastic.
WRT Terri Gross, she has the unfortunate inability to drop her secular scepticism and contempt if she thinks that the subject will lead in non progressive
directions. I have heard her interviewing many liberals sceptically, but only conservatives contemptuously. Consequently, I've stopped listening to her regularly as I always found myself wondering if the last question was slanted in some way reminiscent of Mike Medved or Rush Limbaugh, though from a different angle.
But time must end even in Catholic theology, that is to say God must gather the faithful at some point. They may not believe in the specifics of the Rapture but it is still a Messianic faith.
An interesting "time" issue. If God, angels, or spiritual beings (which would include human souls) are bound by time, try explaining these two passages:
Jude 1:6 And the angels that did not keep their own position but left their proper dwelling have been kept by him in eternal chains in the nether gloom until the judgment of the great day...
Rev 12:7 Now war arose in heaven, Michael and his angels fighting against the dragon; and the dragon and his angels fought, 8 but they were defeated and there was no longer any place for them in heaven. 9 And the great dragon was thrown down, that ancient serpent, who is called the Devil and Satan, the deceiver of the whole world--he was thrown down to the earth, and his angels were thrown down with him.
Now Jude and Revelations are discussing precisely the same subject, but Jude is discussing a past event, while Revelations is discussing a future one. So, we can only conclude, as does CS Lewis in "The Screwtape Letters" that time and events have different meanings in this world and the next. To be precise, perhaps future events in heaven have implications in the past.
So dies the predestination-free will debate also.
Is all of Revelations in the past tense?
Yes, but its in the past tense of an observer of future events.
Rev 4:1 "Come up hither, and I will show you what must take place after this."
Sort of like a time traveller who upon arriving in the future describes things that happened in the near past of that future date.
i heard the first half. all i could think was "i am listening to someone, who is mentally ill. it was hysterically funny as she questioned him as to the mechanics of the rapture, as funny as someone who is mentally ill can be.
i recommend it for a listen.
She's not ill, just intolerant.
Orrin: Not sure if david was referring to the Gross or LaHayne....
I heard the interview, he must have meant Ms Gross.