May 28, 2017

Cloverfield, Catastrophism and Christian Eschatology

cloverfield.jpgThe following post could possibly be the largest discrepancy between the subject of a post and the actual title of a post you’ve ever read in these spaces. I’m hoping someone will nominate the title for an award.

Seriously, if you never thought about the topic of this post, don’t ridicule me. I’ve watched a lot of TV in my life, and it’s taken a toll on my theology.

I’ve seen Cloverfield twice. I could write several posts about the film. If I wanted to talk about art, I’d have some things to say about the reinvention of genre through a change of point of view. If I wanted to talk apologetics, I could discuss the emerging story of redemption that becomes far more important to us than the destruction of Manhattan by an angry lobster.

Instead, I want to venture into really dangerous waters in the blogosphere: eschatology. Go get your charts and slide rules. I’ll get a cherry coke and meet you back here in 2 minutes.

***Commercial for New Reformation Press. Great Lutheran and Reformation gear. Check out the t-shirts.***

Ok. We’re back. The thing is, eschatology really messes with my Christian worldview. The Christian view of the final state of things makes my head hurt. The concept of eternity doesn’t fit into my head. The idea of “heaven” is being rescued by N.T. Wright, but I’ve been seriously out to sea on that one for a long time. (Do we “see” God with eyes? What eyes? What physical ANYTHING?)

And then we have the idea that the final event for planet earth is going to be the arrival of Jesus Christ, commonly portrayed as “rending” the heavens, descending to Jerusalem and all that millennial kingdom stuff. It seems extremely cheesy, at least in every description I’ve every heard (and growing up around southern Gospel music, I’ve heard a lot.)

It’s exceptionally hard for me to buy it. Really. Why? Catastrophism. World-ending disasters that will, it seems to me, happen sooner or later.

Huh? See, you’re not thinking. Remember Cloverfield? What happens is a giant lobster or something drops out of space (see last Coney Island scene) and a month later, out pops Clovis, or whatever is name is, rampaging all over New York City. I’m going to bet that he has family, and the same mess is going to happen all over. Get enough of those space lobsters here, and we’ll have no human race to speak of. We’ll all be eaten.

Which would seem to have some effect on the version of Christian eschatology I’ve had hardwired in my head from my days as a fundamentalist.

I thoroughly understand why young earthers are so devoted to their views of a 10,000 year old earth. There’s not much time for much in the way of catastrophe. If you listen to the story of our world as told by science, catastrophe plays a big part.

Read, for example, the current theories on the origin of the moon. Seems our moon was once part of planet earth. Think about that one when you have a 6,000 year old earth.

Or the impact and effect of meteorites and comets. According to the current theories, the impact of a meteorite or comet killed off the dinosaurs and took the direction of evolution down a completely different path than it had been going. Dinosaurs were finished. Mammals were handed the ball.

Now what interests me isn’t the evolutionary implications (and I probably won’t post comments in that direction. Wrong topic.) What interests me is the idea that things hit the earth every so often. Big things. Comets. Meteorites. Asteroids. World-destroying type things. They pass by our planet all the time, but every so often they impact and change things, like the entire environment in which living things exist. Given an old-earth time frame, they will hit the earth again. It’s a certainty, given enough time.

In fact, if the right thing hit the earth, it’s highly plausible that none of us would be around when Jesus arrived to take over the earth and run things.

It seems that traditional Christian eschatology, especially the post-millennial variety, has to assume some kind of uniformity and to reject the worst case scenarios of catastrophe. Catastrophe’s of the world-ending type don’t do well on the eschatology charts of most Christians.

Is it really wise to ignore those possibilities? The people we work with and talk to know that catastrophism is a fact of the past. Some Christians even make a major point of a world-wide flood. So what about a world-ending disease? Or event, like the impact of an asteroid? Has God promised us it won’t happen?

Jesus predicted earthquakes and stars falling to earth. But was he talking about what would happen if a world-ending comet or asteroid took aim at us? Do Christians need to be purchasing copies of Armageddon to have a plan to keep their Christian eschatology on track?

Just how bad can things get and Christian eschatology remain “on track?” What versions of eschatology can accommodate the facts of catastrophism as we know them today? How do the scenarios of Cloverfield and Armageddon work into Christian theology?

Do those Christians who believe in global warming need to say we could wipe out human life with a man-created catastrophe? If that’s true, why wouldn’t we say it? Because Jesus won’t let it happen and upstage his return?

I tend to think that eschatology is often the weakest area of applied Christian theology; the area where there is the least reflection and rigorous examinations of what we assert. If the giant lobsters come ashore to have us for dinner, where does all of it fit into the totality of Christian belief?

Until we work all this out, I’ll be watching more monster movies, and keeping an eye on the lobster tank at Krogers.

Comments

  1. Michael,

    If this whole post isn’t one big joke you have got me suckered hook-line-and-sinker!!

    First of all I think it is important to distinguish between catastrophe and annihilation. If the human population of the whole earth were annihilated then yes eschatology in any form (pre, mid, or post trib) would be worthless and in fact all together untrue. However, if that is true then the scriptures themselves are untrue as they do not discuss the end times in annihilation terms.

    Catastrophe is an all together different animal. As you have pointed out the earth has already seen catastrophe AND YET HERE WE ARE!! Unless the catasrophe causes annihilaiton there will still be people on the earth. And as we have learned from Noah, it does not take a small, horney bunch of humanity long to repopulate the earth. Thus, not endangering any biblical interpretation of eschatology.

    I hope this will generate some thought.

    I am also not too sure where you were going with the young Earth thing and why that would make a difference with catastrophe.

    As far as the moon once being part of the Earth… come on dude are you serious?!?! You are just
    Gen 1:14-19 tells us that God made the moon along with the sun and the stars. it had nothing to do with Earth.

    Please tell me you are joking with this post. Please tell me you are just being sarcastic… you are being sarcastic right?

    You’ll have to forgive me I am new to your blog and am unfamiliar with your humor.

  2. You really might want to update your reality map there, brother. Most Christians are not young earth creationists. I’m not.

    Spend some time on the site before being outraged, please. It makes a better first impression.

  3. In the last year of my undergrad, my prof had us read Miller’s “Canticle of Leibowitz” precisely so we would consider worldwide nuclear destruction an imaginable possibility (contra some right-wingers, who think that can’t happen on God’s end-times plan). In the story, people survive, though there is the creation of mutants (which the church struggles to protect), but most of the world and all of civilization is destroyed.

    As a postmillennial young earther, I definitely don’t regard world-wide catastrophe as an impossibility. There’s really no biblical reason, as far as I can tell, why there couldn’t be a catastrophe that would destroy most of the human race.

  4. Maybe we need to ask and examine what the point of eschatology is and look at the relationship between eschatology and apocalyptic literature.

  5. What really messes with my head about eschatology is what if we settle other planets before Jesus returns.

  6. in my best William Shatner–
    “Must…run…from giant…man-eating…lobster!..”

    You just totally ruined Cloverfield for me! Next time give a spoiler alert. 😉

    I’m not sure I get the whole thing about catastrophes and eschatology. Isn’t most of fundamentalist eschatology based on catastrophe? Things like seas drying up, things falling from the sky, worldwide disease and famine…how is this in contradiction with catastrophic scenarios?

    Now, if I must consider man-eating lobsters as a statistical possibility, I say get the harpoons and a big vat of butter. We’ll end world hunger seafood style.

  7. I think Matt’s concerns should have been addressed, since I (even though not a young-earther) would agree that they make a fine case for how end-times theology coexists with catastrophism. Jesus was too specific about the end times for the human race to die out from an asteroid and the universe to continue for trillions of years before collapsing and everything just ending.

    We’re always at threat, and we’ve always known we’re at threat. Whether it’s the bubonic plague, nuclear fallout, climate change, asteroids, or giant space lobsters, something always is there to do us some serious damage. Again, the plague was a good example. And yet we always survive. We might get wiped out to the point of “a few really horny people”, but we keep going, waiting for the Day of the Lord. My perspective is that God loves us and will come again for the Church. So there has to BE a Church to come back to, and there have to be humans (or some evolutionary descendant).

    We don’t need to close our eyes to science. When we hear about climate change, we ought to say “yes, that could kill millions, let’s stop it!” And if Christ returns before the planet has a chance to turn into a glacier or Venus or whatever, maybe he’ll say to us “good job, thanks for paying attention when I made you stewards.”

    Will the second coming be like your Gospel songs? No. Way. Will it be like I imagine it? Probably not. Will it still happen? Yes, because He who told us He’ll return is no liar.

  8. Premillenialism helped get me serious about Christianity as a teenager; as an adult, I guess I’ve outgrown the hype. The alternatives are few and far between. I don’t think I make a good amillennialist.

    Everyone looks for catastrophic events that are pushing us toward the end times, but I think eschatology is a lot more boring than that. To steal a line from Robert Bork, your title might be “Slouching Toward Armageddon.” The end times are a slow turning of events, as many of your blog contributors have pointed out in II Timothy Chapter three. While American Evangelicals have hysterically gobbled up every book, DVD, and video game offered by LaHaye and Jenkins, they have actually become bit players in the end times drama. A pragmatic Christian religion fits the apocalyptic prophecy of a one world religion better than the RC. So, while evangelicals were busy on the lookout for the anti-christ, the devil has been at work stirring his apostacy leven into the loaf. When the antichrist does eventually show up, he will literally look and feel just like one of us. He’ll probably even blink alot. The parallels with post WW-I Germany are a little disturbing.

  9. I think that if a giant lobster comes ashore and eats me, I will then have complete certainty and confidence about my eschatology.

  10. I haven’t lost any sleep over giant lobsters. I do have some fear of churches that no longer preach the gospel. Will the Son of Man find faith when he returns?

    Perhaps world scale catastrophes remind us that we haven’t really got God or his universe figured out.

  11. Chris Stiles says:

    As an Old-Earth amillenialist who believes in evolution, I don’t really have any problems with a returning king who waits till humanity has spawned the galaxies before coming back – or indeed who comes back in the next few moments.

    On the other hand, I really believe that we can’t comprehend the grandeur of the event. I believe we only have a briefest inkling of verses like Romans 8:22 mean. Jesus doesn’t return as a simsonesque giant flashing glow-bulb on an invisible string stretching out into infinity. Pre-mill dispensationalism, even when I was really into it, always seemed so jejune.

    I believe in a God who is so great that when we are before him he’ll make the greatest of our philosophical speculations about the infinite appear like the babblings of an infant.

  12. I’ve often wondered what the successful colonization of another planet, or what extra-terrestrial contact would do to my own eschatology. It’s no race-ending lobster, but its the same kind of flux I think…

    For me, a race-ending catastrophe or alien contact at least would basically do the same thing disproving Genesis would do to me, it would take my faith out of the flow of “real history” and put it into pure subjectivism. I’d jettison it more than likely…

    If it didn’t really happen, and won’t really happen, like it is forecasted… I don’t think “the faith” could weather that storm…

    But then again I don’t think it’d happen…;-) but I would like that much free lobster were we to nuke the bastard.

  13. I, for one, am just glad that there are fellow former-fundamentalists out there who are also dumbfounded by the answers and solutions they were offered earlier in life.

    I have often wondered what the possibility of life on other planets would mean to theology, Christian or otherwise. But, as a former evangelical fundamentalist, I was brought up believing that Tim LaHaye (and his brethren) had an understanding of the End Times that we mere mortals and infants-in-the-faith should be thankful for.

    Yikes.

    I say bring on the lobsters… I’d prefer it to the catastrophes (hellfire and brimstone and eternal damnation) I have apparently brought on myself by questioning eschatology instead of blindly following any millennialist’s teaching (pre-, post-, or a-).

  14. I agree with daniel. If catastrophe is the way it is gonna go down, I say bring on the spacemonkey-lobster-spider-crab guy.If we are gonna get it, the survivors might as well get an awesome thrill ride of an adventure caught on tape.

    “believe in a God who is so great that when we are before him he’ll make the greatest of our philosophical speculations about the infinite appear like the babblings of an infant.” -awesome quote, Good point Chris.

  15. Patrick Kyle says:

    Talk about a thought provoking post…

    And I really enjoyed the word from your sponsors during the intermission 😉

    For me the jury is still out about old vs. young earth, though I lean towards the older view.

    As an amillenialist, I had never ruled out a huge catastrophy, especially in light of what Peter says about about the Heavens passing away with a great roar and the elements melting in fervent heat. Sounds like a cosmic disaster(supernova, black hole or some yet unknown inter dimensional disaster that consumes the universe in our dimension with a horrendous conflagration) that happens when Christ returns. Various dispensational scenarios never struck me as cosmic or universal enough to qualify as the end of all things and the creation of a new Heavens and Earth. An earthly millenial reign of Christ in which sin is not entirely vanquished and people aren’t sufficiently transformed enough to avoid one last giant rebellion and final showdown seems to be anticlimactic to say the least. Amillenialism sees the Millenium as the Church age and the one return of Christ as the culmination of the ages and the inauguration of the New Heavens and Earth wherein righteousness dwells. Not only does this view allow for a huge catastrophe like you are speaking about, it expects one.

    As to the settling of other planets–our God is the one who hung the heavens like a curtain and who will peel back the sky like a parchment. The Scriptures say every eye shall see Him. If the Heavens are going to pass away I think someone on Mars or another planet elsewhere in the galaxy will have the same front row seat we do. Its the same question the ancient Israelites had about God. He was a God of the mountains. Would He be as powerful on the plains or on the sea? The resounding answer is yes!

  16. You know, there is another way of dealing with the Gordian knot of eschatology – take a non-literal view of Revelations or just ignore it all together. Of all the books of the Bible, it is the only book that never quite seems to fit… Perhaps we should start asking why.

    But, you need not listen to me; I’m just a friendly heathen.

    Namaste.

  17. Patrick Kyle says:

    I once heard that there are 600,000 species of beetles on earth. God really seems to dig diversity and creating things. It wouldn’t surprise me if we find out that the Universe is shot through with life. God has revealed Himself to us in His Son. Life on another planet doesn’t change that.

  18. In all seriousness, not only do I think a catastrophe is possible, but quite likely given the fast expansion of technology and human nature. I read a great quote recently.

    “We learned what we were capable of at Auschwitz’s,
    We learned what is at stake with Hiroshima”

    I don’t think it will kill every last human, but it is entirely possible that something very big could happen. Although I have to say that if a catastrophe hits, I hope it is zombies. I could survive zombies. I have a contingency plan for each variety of zombie, I am prepared!

    ryan

  19. “believe in a God who is so great that when we are before him he’ll make the greatest of our philosophical speculations about the infinite appear like the babblings of an infant.” -awesome quote, Good point Chris.

    There was once a time when I would have taken some comfort in that statement, and perhaps I would still like to. However, I fear that it is as much a way to simply end discussion as it is anything else.

  20. Steve,

    Yes that is true as well, we can’t use the fact that we can’t comprehend God as an excuse at not confronting philosophy, or tough questions. But we must not rely to heavily on our ability to reason with something that cannot be grasped. If anything, the fact that we can’t understand something should fuel more discussion, not less.

    ryan

  21. Mort Chien says:

    How about this for hyperliteralization: Rev 8:8-11 describes two cometary collision with the earth. One of the comets is named after its discoverer, who happens to be named Apsinthos (e.g. wormwood).

    “The second angel sounded, and something like a great mountain burning with fire was thrown into the sea; and a third of the sea became blood, and a third of the creatures which were in the sea and had life, died; and a third of the ships were destroyed.
    The third angel sounded, and a great star fell from heaven, burning like a torch, and it fell on a third of the rivers and on the springs of waters. The name of the star is called Wormwood; and a third of the waters became wormwood, and many men died from the waters, because they were made bitter.”

    Do you think I can make a story of it and join the prophesy conference set? 🙂 I could use the money.

    Mort Chien

    No, I do not believe this. But I think I may write a spoof on premill endtimes madness featuring this one. Hey, what about making in coincide with the 2000 year anniversary of Pentacost in 2030? Move over Tim Lahaye. Mort is on a roll…

  22. Fear. Uncertainty. It’s what makes eschatology a best seller. Mixing in evolution and its epistemology of uncertainty makes it that much more lothsome. Sure! giant lobsters are plausible in a world view dictated by randomness. How about giant Stay Puff marshmallow men? Earth-crushing asteroids? C’mon! get creative!

    On the feast day of Thomas Aquinas, indulge me to quote from Chesterton’s biography of the good Doctor:

    “St. Thomas was willing to allow the one truth to be approached by two paths, precisely because he was sure there was only one truth. Because the Faith was the one truth, nothing discovered in nature [including giant lobsters] could ultimately contradict the Faith. Because the Faith was the one truth, nothing really deduced from the Faith could ultimately contradict the facts. It was in truth a curiously daring confidence in the reality of his religion; and though some may linger to dispute it, it has been justified.”

    There’s a lot I don’t need to know about eschatology or catastrophes which may come before the end, if I can trust the one who is the Lord of time and space. I believe there is room to disagree on cosmology, but I must disagree when the Trinity becomes subservant to the god of evolution. There is a difference between sovereignty and fatalism, and evolution is pure fatalism. There is no gospel story offered by evolution, just the “Billy Goat Gruff” story: don’t eat me, O terrible lobster monsters! Eat my neighbor instead!

  23. “There was once a time when I would have taken some comfort in that statement, and perhaps I would still like to. However, I fear that it is as much a way to simply end discussion as it is anything else.”

    I disagree, I think it’s just about realising that when talking about concepts like infinity and eternity and the end of all things we are speaking outside the realm of our experience and thus are inevitably going to make mistakes, as children do who do not have experience of the world. It doesn’t end discussion, it gives it perspective.

  24. Way off-topic, but all this lobster talk reminds me of the B-52’s and Veggie Tales.

    Follow the links if you’re not convinced they’re connected. 🙂

  25. @ Patrick Kyle : I suppose if God can manage to direct 600,000 species of beetles to a boat in the middle east in a week’s time, hanging “the heavens like a curtain” and peeling “back the sky like a parchment” are completely reasonable possibilities to consider.

    For the record, I don’t believe Noah managed to load two of every kind of penguin, kangaroo and caterpillar into the ark (to say nothing of all those beetles)… and I don’t believe the heavens will be “peeling back” through any divine catastrophe or spiritually guided intervention.

    I see the probability of the Lord coming back through the clouds as about as likely as an invasion of space lobsters.

    If our beautiful planet is destroyed, it will have everything to do with the actions of a few of us humans and nothing to do with Jesus.

  26. iMonk’s prelude to this post, 3-1/2 years ago.

    And more on asteroids 3 years ago.

  27. Chris Stiles says:

    Steven – That quote isn’t meant to simply end discussion. The babblings of an infant still have value both to it’s parent(s), and as the first glimmerings of true language and true understanding.

    It does mean that our speculations are necessarily incomplete – by a huge margin. During the 60s, there were Christians who said that God would never allow Apollo to land on the moon [after all Satan lived on the earth, and as they left they earth they’d be leaving the domain of sin into which humanity had been cast]. As far as I know we got to the moon, without God stopping us.

    So I’m not overly cocnerned by statements that ‘God has to come back before X happens’.

  28. Jon Bartlett says:

    For a friendly heathen, John P seems to have got it almost right. I am amazed how I ever believed that Jewish poetry contains a detailed timetable for and description of the end of the world.

    Read it as a wake up call to the second generation Christians of the day not to compromise with the culture around and to stand out through all persecution and adversity – for God wins in the end – and it’s a whole lot more scary. If you apply it to our own culture, it may even have to impact our lives….

    Meanwhile, I’m just going to carry on being a greedy materialist and wait for the rapture….

  29. I guess I just don’t get it. Can Michael (or someone) explain why this is such a big deal?
    If you take the Bible seriously at all, you recognize that there will be something called the second coming. You don’t have to be a literalist or fundamentalist to recognize that this is something Christ Himself said would happen.
    He also said there would be difficult times before He comes (i.e. “wars and rumors of wars”).
    Paul predicted that in the last days terrible times will come, and he described them in brief. For example (don’t have the time to look it up), “Men will be lovers of self, lovers of pleasure, rather than lovers of God.”
    You don’t have to take seriously all the “Left Behind” or Hal Lindsey scenarios to recognize that Christ’s kingdom is not of this world, as He said, and that eventually “the kingdom of the world [will] become the kingdom of our Lord and of His Christ.” Our hope is in that better future.
    I don’t want to sound like the requisite Bible-thumper getting after people for asking too many questions. I just don’t understand why people are focused on whether catastophes can or will happen. Our mind should be focused on “the things that are above,” not “the things which are on the earth.” Have faith and hope in Him, and don’t worry about any giant lobsters.
    On the other hand, maybe I missed the whole point of this post. Let me know.

  30. I would say that many Catholics believe that The Revelation is not really a prophecy, so much as a coded message to the seven early churches, written in in such a way that those members would get the meaning but the Romans would not. If true, that would mean the fundamentalist blueprint for the end times is as much a misunderstanding as the aliens who mistook “Galaxyquest” for “historical documents.”

    My question has always been that, if fundamentalists demand the Bible be taken literally in all things, why are they always looking for corellaries to the signs in The Revelation instead of expecting a beast to rise from the sea (!) with seven heads and ten horns. Literal is literal, right?

  31. As we slowly come to grips with the cleverness of humanity, the vastness of space, the age of the universe, we will only be confronted more and more by ideas that will upset the most fundamentalist and simplistic minded individuals.

    Unless sticking your fingers in your earths and going “NAH, NAH, NAH, NAH CAN’T HEAR YOU!” qualifies as a justifiable and sustainable religious outlook, I am simply baffled how the modern Christian/religious community is still wrestling with these questions.

  32. Chris Taylor says:

    Hey Michael, not to be a downer, but JJ Abrams said that thing that fell from space was a satellite that woke up mr lobster.
    Here’s a link to the IMDB faq for you:
    http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1060277/faq#.2.1.58

  33. @ Russell

    +1

    Big thumbs up.

  34. Friends – It’s curious to think of some future catastrophe. After all, the last centuries are full of it — manmade, mostly, but still catastrophic.

    Consider the plague which called one-third of Europe’s population. Or the diseases which killed ~95 percent of American Indians. The tens of millions killed in WWII. These were surely catastrophes; from the perspective of those involved, their whole world was shifting, if not ending. As the old song goes, wars may rage and kingdoms fall – even ours – but the Word of the Lord remains.

    I don’t doubt we’ll see (and make) future catastrophes for ourselves, but believe there will be a Church still — even if that means only a handful of believers on a parched earth blasted by … whatever. I suppose that makes me “all-millennial,” as in, it will all work out as God sees fit.

  35. Patrick Kyle says:

    Daniel H,

    What can I say? You apparently put no stock in the scriptures. I do. I guess we disagree on that score.

    As to the actions of a few humans destroying the planet, I think you ascribe to us too much power and importance. The dangers of a cosmic catastrophe (asteroid, nearby supernova) are just as likely as anything we can cook up, and they are absolutely out of our control. ( I have never bought in to the Ecological Doomsday scenarios-lots of bad science and incomplete data, some world class fearmongering too.)

  36. Don’t worry, we’re safe from giant lobsters. Enormous arthropods would be too heavy to move.

  37. @ Patrick K : well, “no stock” is a bit of an overstatement, but I’m definitely in recovery after having spent the first 27 years of my life taking the whole book as inerrant and literal. I believe it’s clear the Bible is neither.

    As stories, myths, tales that point to a higher truth and give some people a way to talk about things that are beyond human explanation or comprehension, I can cede some value to the (collection of) book(s) known as the Bible.

    I think your statement of cosmic catastrophe being “just as likely as anything we can cook up” is remarkably naive and dangerous… and is exactly the reason why fundamentalists of all stripes should have their views critically examined by the scientific and educated leaders of our time.

    The possibility of global catastrophe (armageddon, end times, et al) has raised significantly in the past few decades, and is the Hoped-For End Game of at least two massive religious groups dominating the world today : christians and muslims.

    You honestly think the odds are EVEN between these two options?

    1. an asteroid or nearby supernova brings cataclysmic annihilation to Earth and significant portions of our population

    2. a group of believers who are of the opinion they have exclusivity on Truth decide to obtain and detonate weapons of annihilation (weapons the likes of which weren’t even fathomable in the time of the biblical scribes) in an effort to bring on the end of the world, heaven, paradise, the second coming, a triumphant return, etc.

    Sam Harris’ The End Of Faith absolutely scared the hell out of me (scared the heaven out of me?) in the best possible way. Critical reading for anyone interested in doomsday scenarios (especially eschatology), imho.

  38. Don’t worry, we’re safe from giant lobsters. Enormous arthropods would be too heavy to move.

    hmmm….I wouldn’t be so sure about that.

    http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2007/11/071121-giant-scorpion.html

  39. @ John Pageless:

    I just read your blog & your ‘about me’ section. I hope you find what you are searching for, and I pray it is Christ. “Unitarian Universalism” is not the answer I’m afraid.

    /threadjack

  40. The fact that so many people are interested enough in eschatology to respond to your blog, is in itself encouraging.

    I believe that Christ used close planetary encounters with the Earth for destructive and constructive purposes. Around 6000 years ago proto-Venus was used to wipe clean the surface of the Earth of the inferior species that existed at the time, in preparation for the advent of mankind. Genesis 1:2 describes the state of the ancient Earth at after that destruction – tohu and bohu, not the creation of the Earth.

    He then used all the terrestrial planets in a unique way to replenish the Earth until around 700 BC. The close encounters of the other terrestrial planets (Baalim, or the host of heaven in the Bible) caused millions of deaths by flood and earthquakes, but in the long term resulted in the replenished Earth we enjoy today. In short, catastrophism has been used by God to get mankind this far, and understanding those events hints at an interesting means by which the earth could be destroyed.

    Academics today fail to believe in the intervention of God in the world, which is synonemous with uniformitarianism. It is interesting that 2 Peter 3:3-7 prophecies that in the ‘end time’ there will be ‘scoffers’ who are ‘willingly ignorant’ of these interventions. It ends as follows: “But the heavens and the earth, [are now] reserved against the day of judgement and perdition of ungodly men.”

    The greatest arrogance is to debate or criticise the creator. Come to grips with your mortality, love and accept Christ as your savior and then look forward to the great experience to come.

    firmament-chaos.com

  41. Angirias = Velikovsky.

    The term “proto-Venus”, especially used to explain a somewhat-literal Genesis account, gives it away.