So, the latest conspiracy theory of Bible prophecy pundits is that September 23, 2017 will find an astronomical alignment predicted in Revelation 12 that will launch the End of Days. To be fair, not all prophecy geeks support this theory, but still, it is symbolic of the ongoing failure of all futurist End Times theories that plagues the history of Evangelical Christianity.
How are those Blood Moons working Out for You?
The basic theory is not worth the time, but I’ll quickly describe it (And, yes, there are many variations, so this is a generalization). It claims that the description of Revelation 12 is an astral prophecy that launches the rapture or other end times events leading to an “Antichrist” who claims to be the savior of our world that’s gone to hell in a hand basket. This Satanic figure masquerades as the Pope or Islamic mahdi, or whatever your idiosyncratic choice is, he makes a covenant with Israel, rebuilds the temple, reinstitutes the sacrifices, then breaks that covenant and turns on Israel, raises up the Beast and the mark of the Beast and leads all the nations into Armageddon against Jerusalem, where Jesus returns to stop it all.
This conspiracy theory has become so common, even godless secular people can recount it to you. I call it a conspiracy theory because if you examine history (see The Day and the Hour by Gummerlock) you’ll find this same kind of belief in every generation. Christians have claimed to be the final generation of the Last Days for centuries.
And they have always been wrong.
I know what you’re thinking. That doesn’t mean they are wrong now. Okay, here’s a prediction I’ll make. These new ones will be proven wrong too. How can I say this? because they are fundamentally misinterpreting Bible prophecies. Their scenario is not at all what the Scriptures are saying. More on that, later.
I remember in the 1970s, Hal Lindsey made a godless amount of money with his Late Great Planet Earth saying that the Second Coming was coming by 1988. Others followed. And they are always wrong. About it all. Lately, the Blood Moons were supposed to herald the last days. But they’ve come and gone. And September 23 will come and go. And Christians will continue to look stupid as they continue to revere these Bible prophecy charlatans like Lindsey and John Hagee and others. Like all good conspiracy theorists, they will continue to change their last days conspiracy theories to fit new facts and try to ignore their failed predictions of the past.
Recent Christian prophecy pundits don’t seem to realize that Hal Lindsey and all the others proved every prophecy with connections to their own day. And they were always wrong. And modern day pundits will be wrong too. They think that they have found more intimate connections of prophecy to news worthy events of today. But they are no different from the past pundits, who listed the same intimate connections with events of THEIR day.
That’s how conspiracy theories work. It just has to be right because I found all these links in a huge chain of anomalies and coincidences. Surely, the mark of the Beast is a chip in the hand. Just like it used to be a UPC code tattoo. Surely, the Antichrist is Muslim, just like he used to surely be a Jew and the Pope, and Ronald Reagan and Gorbachev and on and on.
There’s a reason why false prophets were stoned in the Old Testament. I’m not suggesting we do that. But I am saying that this constant failure is not merely being wrong, it is the sign of spiritual delinquency. Serious spiritual delinquency. We must call these prophecy teachers out, call them to account and REJECT THEM, not continue to give them a platform for more slandering of Jesus’ reputation with their false prophecies.
Back to Revelation 12
Okay, so here is the prophecy that is supposed to be about the End Times:
Revelation 12:1–6 (ESV)
1 And a great sign appeared in heaven: a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet, and on her head a crown of twelve stars. 2 She was pregnant and was crying out in birth pains and the agony of giving birth. 3 And another sign appeared in heaven: behold, a great red dragon, with seven heads and ten horns, and on his heads seven diadems. 4 His tail swept down a third of the stars of heaven and cast them to the earth. And the dragon stood before the woman who was about to give birth, so that when she bore her child he might devour it. 5 She gave birth to a male child, one who is to rule all the nations with a rod of iron, but her child was caught up to God and to his throne, 6 and the woman fled into the wilderness, where she has a place prepared by God, in which she is to be nourished for 1,260 days.
There is actually a legitimate scholarly argument that this text is rooted in astronomical observations (here). But the whole point of the passage is that it is about the FIRST COMING of Christ, not the second. This isn’t in our future. It already happened in our past!
The woman represents ideal Israel (Gal 4:24-26), the twelve stars, the twelve tribes (Gen 37:9). Her child who is to rule the nations with a rod of iron is Jesus (Rev 2:27; 19:15). Satan tried to destroy Jesus at the cross. The birth in this passage is not his incarnation, but his resurrection as “firstborn from the dead” (Col 1:18; Psa 2:7). His ascension to the right hand of God is the “being caught up to God and to his throne.” (Heb 1:3). And the 1260 days of the woman being protected in the wilderness was a historical reference to the Church as Ideal Israel being protected for the three and a half years of the siege of Jerusalem in AD 66. Jesus had foretold the destruction of the holy city (Matthew 24:1-2) and told the Christians to flee to the mountains (Matt 24:15-21). And they did. And it happened JUST AS JESUS SAID IT WOULD.
But it already happened. It’s not in our future.
I explain all this in my new book, End Times Bible Prophecy: It’s Not What They Told You.
Most all the prophecies that these modern prophecy pundits claim are in our future have already been fulfilled in the past. And I prove it. From. The. Bible.
Yes, I know. Christians don’t agree on all these points of interpretation of prophecy. But my point is, don’t you think its time to stop listening to the ever-changing, always-wrong conspiracy theories of futurist Christian prophecy pundits and consider a perspective more rooted in history? One that has been proven to have been fulfilled, not one that continues to prove false and unfulfilling.
14 comments on “September 23: Here’s Why Modern Bible Prophecy Pundits are Always Wrong”
So If all this already happened, what time period of history are we in now? I agree with the crazy predictions that don’t come true. I have told many of my friends that no one knows the day or the hour so forget Sept. 23. If Christ came back in the first Century who was left to Evangelize the world?? I would assume he took his saints with him in the resurrection when he came to get them. Phillip 4 and 1 Cor. 15.
Do you believe in the millenial reign of Christ?
I am a postmillennial preterist. So I do believe Jesus came on the clouds of judgment in the first century, but that is not the same as the Second Advent. What I deconstruct is the whole Rapture/Antichrist/Tribulation/Israel obsession. Check out the book. Or better yet, buy my novel series Chronicles of the Apocalypse and get it through entertainment. 🙂
I agree with everything you’ve said. Can you please clarify this statement.
“I am a postmillennial preterist. So I do believe Jesus came on the clouds of judgment in the first century, but that is not the same as the Second Advent.”
What do you mean by the Second Advent? Are we still waiting for it?
Hi, Steve. Postmillennial preterism believes that Christ’s coming in judgment at AD 70 was not his physical return which is yet future. Second Advent means Second Coming, as in physical, not spiritual. AD 70 was a spiritual coming like God did in the OT. I explain everything in my book End Times Bible Prophecy
Got it. Thanks.
I think arrogance in the church is rampant beyond belief. Not many are saying what many claim. Balance the intellectual and spiritual. Now that is extreme. Balance. Some one is always wrong no matter what. They are only questioning.
I agree. I think it’s important we question all these claims and also to make them accountable. So many just are wrong and then change their wrong predictions into new ones and people still follow them. That is just wrong.
Brian, I loved your interview with Tony Rwinked. I’m curious about your view on this passage from 2 Thessalonians 2, which is completely devoid of symbolism. It is merely straightforward teaching in one of Paul’s letters, in response to the Thessalonians’ concerns about “the coming of our Lord and our being gathered to him”. Would you agree that this description of the antichrist, “the man of sin”, must refer to something that has not yet happened? Thanks!
Oops…. that was supposed to read, “Tony Reinke….”!
Brian, I loved your interview with Tony Reinke. I’m curious about your view on this passage from 2 Thessalonians 2, which is completely devoid of symbolism. It is merely straightforward teaching in one of Paul’s letters, in response to the Thessalonians’ concerns about “the coming of our Lord and our being gathered to him”. Would you agree that this description of the antichrist, “the man of sin”, must refer to something that has not yet happened? Thanks!
“And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord Jesus will kill with the breath of his mouth and bring to nothing by the appearance of his coming. The coming of the lawless one is by the activity of Satan with all power and false signs and wonders, and with all wicked deception for those who are perishing, because they refused to love the truth and so be saved. Therefore God sends them a strong delusion, so that they may believe what is false, in order that all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness.”
2 Thessalonians 2:8-12
Hi, Scott. I think this is a good interpretation of that passage. It’s the one I use in my novel series Chronicles of the Apocalypse:
Sorry about all of the above mistakes. Finally pasted it together correctly! 🙂
Incorrect. Rev 12 describes that which is future, which is PATTERNED AFTER what occurred in the past. The word “harpazo” as well as arsen/teknon prove it is the church that rules and reigns with Christ when it is caught up. But you ignore the original text. Jesus’ ascension uses 3 entirely different words, not harpazo! Professors of eschatology at DTS have proved your scoffer theory wrong via the grammar of the original text.
Steven, your assertion about Rev 12 being a prophecy of our future based on the past is not warranted in the text. It is a preconceived notion imposed upon the text.I gave all the Scriptural bases for each of my explanations. You did not address any of them. You simply appealed to your authority of DTS. I say prove it from the Bible, not mere denial and assertion.
The child is Jesus Christ in the passage, not the church. The child is “male,” you know, like Jesus. The church is not described as male, but as female, the “bride of christ,” and others. The child is “one” who will rule the nations, not many (we rule with him, but this is not talking about us, but about him).
Harpazo is used of Christ’s ascension in this very chapter. It is used of Paul’s ascension into heaven (2Cor 12:2)
The fall of Satan to the earth is not a future event, it occurred in the ministry of Christ (Luke 10:18).
The believers in Messiah (the woman, the Church), fled to the mountains in the wilderness, just like Jesus had told them to (Matt 24:16). Surprise! when the believers fled to the mountain city of Pella around AD 67, they were there for 1,260 days, or 3 1/2 years during Titus’ seige of Jerusalem. Just like Revelation 12:6 says.
That’s not scoffing, dude, that’s glorious fulfillment of Bible prophecy.