Everything sublime is as difficult as it is rare. Baruch Spinoza

Monday, November 10, 2008

The Trouble With A 'But Why?' Mind (This Could Offend)

I have been reading some blogs recently that have disturbed me, but also have caused me to ask, but why do you think this way? So, I have spent hours researching this topic and I still don't have the answer.
I have been immersed in a religious theology totally foreign, as well as offensive, to me; Dispensationalism/Premillenialism. Common name; Evangelical, Pentecostal, Baptist. I went further then what, but why and came to John Nelson Darby (1800 - 1882) an Irish Protestant clergyman who saw a second coming of Christ and he believed it would precede the time of 'tribulation', which he called the 'secret rapture'.
I have read pages on the foundation of this philosophy, as well as the fundamental belief; basically I will need to convert or forever swim in a lake of fire. You see, I am a Jew. I could spit out volumes of data, verses, etc., which means nothing more to me than the prior statement. I am a Jew. Israel and the Jews are needed to attain the ascension or rapture for the select group of believers, while everyone else is condemned to the horrors of hell. But I, I and my tribe, are essential to this plan. I don't know why, but I don't feel special.
I have better things to do than spend my time on this and I will get back to those things and leave this behind, but I was looking for some definitive reason and I didn't find it, other than the usual. Dogma and need. But when I read a young woman saying that they won't need to worry about their 401K because we won't be around long enough to worry about it, as well as some other stuff I won't repeat, and this is seen as a good thing, I think dogma and need are enough to warp minds and make me sad, as well as cynical.


  1. I have probably heard some of the same things you have about this being the begining of the end of all time. I'm not a believer of it. I am Lutheran, and am going to live my life to the fullest, that's really all you can do whether the end is coming or not - throwing in the towel makes no sense to me.

  2. I don't know why I have let this bother me so much, I didn't just now learn about it. I guess it is reading someone talking about it and looking forward to it that got to me. So, I wanted to understand it better and I came away more disturbed than when I started.
    I agree with your sentiment, life is what you make of it in the here and now.

  3. I have to say that the 'end times' theology floating around now and probably the beginning of time has a strong draw for many people. I think it is a way to feel
    (believe it or not) special, an excuse to remove one's responsibility for the future, and a succumbing to that insatiable 'need to know' feeling that many people walk around with. I am comfortable living with a certain amount of mystery surrounding the 'big questions and answers' As soon as someone demands to 'figure it all out' and to be 'certain' about all things, their searches inevitably push them beyond what I would call good common sense and into something that becomes polarizing and ultimately paralyzing. I am sorry that so many choose to dwell on the future (or lack there of : ) instead of striving to better what has been put before them. Oh well, I share your frustration with this mindset but have decided to try and understand these mindset and theologies with a certain amount of forebearance and the patience usually required when dealing with anyone with dogmatic and unbendable ideas.

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts about this.


  4. I should have said "...SINCE the beginning of time..."

    Ooops... : )

  5. Well, as the person who wants to know the history, I searched it out. This idea of Rapture is not as old as time. This is different from the Apocalypse prophecy, as far as I can tell, but rather an idea that came from John Nelson Darby in the period around 1830. There is some indication that the rise in belief in the Pre-Tribulation Rapture is attributed to a 15 year- old Scottish girl named Margaret McDonald who had a vision that was later published in 1861. She was a follower of Edward Irving, I haven't researched him, but this must have some significance as it was mentioned in a paper.
    Catholics, Orthodox Churches and the Reformed denominations reject the tradition, they can't any reference to it in the early church and they find its biblical foundation weak. There is also rejection among some of these religions because they interpret prophetic scriptures differently. (amillennial or postmillenial)
    I have pages of writings on this, but I guess the question I would have is, why does a group need to believe in something that causes the damnation of entire groups of people because they aren't 'us', so as to attain their eternal 'rapture', to the point of wishing for it.
    How do people who think this way go through life interacting with people they have determined need damnation for their salvation?
    Ah, well. Probably unanswerable. ; )
    On a different note, when did it become popular for 30 - something women to decide it is 'biblical' to be subservient and bound to service to their husband? I can understand this being pushed upon woman several generations ago, but NOW? My head aches. : )

  6. Sandra,

    I think my sidebar might have become a source for your headaches : ) I venture to these sights and more than often bite my tongue. Most of these ladies are j old high school friends or child hood friends. Some are more controversial than others . However!! if you venture into their sidebars you will likely tread into territory that I do not enter and can not offer an explanation for: ) You will meet staunch creationists, anti-feminists, and the like. While I agree with some of their principles and ideas I cannot espouse their (in my opinion) over confident and exclusionary rhetoric.
    The "popular' anti-feminist movement is dreiven by the same thing that the feminist movement was driven by, that being a general unhappiness with the treatment and state of being a woman. Many of these woman tried to juggle career and family and could not hack it. They have decided that telling woman to 'do it all' was a bad advice and that woman fare better at home. That was not a plug for this movement just how it has been explained to me : )

    Whew. I probably said too much and am boring you to DEATH! : )



  7. There's a huge middle between staying home with your children and deciding it is God's order to be subservient to your husband and must bend to his will! I was so struck by the discussion about whether educating daughters beyond HS is a sin. These particular women decided it's not a sin, but that although educated, the daughter's obligation is to marry, have children and subjugate themselves to the man. I have always had a live and let live attitude, but OMG!
    I have never gone further then the group off your sidebar, I knew intuitively that would give me a migraine if I did.
    I'm an irreligious Democratic Socialist who believes in science, arts, good food and wine and life in general. And oddly, I am often an overbearing moralist! I am the devil, as far as your longtime friends would be concerned. : ) : ) Maybe a few of my own friends as well, if I tell the truth!

  8. The 'be submissive' to your husband boils down to two ideological camps in the evangelical christian culture. Egalitarianism vs Complimentarianism. Egalitarians view the husband and wife as equal contributers to the same 'team'. Complimentarians view woman's and men's roles to be different and 'realm' oriented. Home and "Work place' being two very distinctive and gendered areas. There is a friend of mine who created a website and was addressing the biblical background and validity of the complimentarian view point. She is an egalitarian and her posts were very interesting and well researched/written. I will direct you there. I am sure you will appreciate her posts but if you decide to read the comments have some Advil handy : ) : ) The comment section is usually pretty interesting. Her site is pretty dead right now as she is expecting her first baby and otherwise occupied
    : )

  9. http://abandonimage.blogspot.com/search/label/Women%20Issues

    If you scroll to the bottom the entries follow from first to last in that order.

    If you are so inclined, of course : )


  10. Thanks Ashley! I will read this.


I really appreciate the concept and sentiment behind awards, but I cannot participate in them anymore. I have too may and I have not got the time to devote to participating properly. To all who have honored me, I am grateful but I don't have seven more things to tell anyone about myself! And I'm a terrible passer-oner.