KJV Onlyism: A Travesty of Bible Understanding

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In 2016, a family friend and I went to the church bookshop. He wanted to buy two Bibles for his children. He scanned through the Bible shelf and picked out a King James Bible. “Why? But they are still children,” I protested.

He didn’t seem to get it, he apparently felt the KJV should be the default version for everyone because of its regular usage by the church’s general overseer.

“These children won’t understand the old English of the KJV. It should be bought for adults,” I opined. “Children need a Bible that they can fluently read and understand as much as what they read in school. If the Bible is too complicated for them in their young ages, they will grow up not studying and understanding it.”

He listened on, so I selected the Contemporary English Version and gave it to him. He’s not a native English speaker, but after reading a few lines from it, he smiled in excitement saying, “Its English is so clear; it’s like the sermon of a modern European evangelist!”

We both laughed and he purchased the Bibles.

It later dawned on me that this man had hitherto not been exposed to reading any English translation except the KJV. He had been locked in the KJV from the start and this has blunted his personal study and knowledge of Scripture.

The fact is: the language of the KJV can make the Bible complicated to a modern reader.

This has to be demonstrated, not merely claimed. But before I get to this, I want to first point one of the dubious arguments that led me to into KJV Onlyism 12 years ago. Here it is:

“It is all a question of authority! If we say that God wrote only one Bible, and for us today it is the Authorized Version – 1611, King James Version, then our problem is solved. But if we say this version is nice, and that version is nice, and it is a matter of preference, then the authority becomes human opinion” (William Schnoebelen, Blood on the Doorposts, Chick Publications, 1994, p. 211).

This is a mendacious rhetoric that illustrates the cognitive dissonance of the KJO belief. Its major flaw is how the writer places Bible authority on a certain translation whereas the Bible’s authority rests on its inspiration – not its translation.

The Bible’s original languages were Hebrew, Aramaic and Greek. These are the inspired and authoritative languages. English is merely one of the translations of the originals. God didn’t write the KJV, and history reveals that the roots of fundamentalism rest in the authority of the Greek and Hebrew texts of the Bible, not in any English translation.

Second, the idea of God writing “only one Bible” occurs only in the bubble universe of the KJOs. They peddle their beliefs by collapsing Bible inspiration into transmission and translation. God inspired the original autographs but many copies and translations were made from them.

All through history, there have been different translations of the Bible. People who believe that only the KJV should be used, fail to recognize that men like Peter, Paul, and Jesus Himself didn’t always use the same version!

Just a few of many examples from the KJV confirm this point:

When Isaiah 53:7 is quoted in Acts, it says: “…as a sheep before her shearers is dumb” (Acts 8:32). But when we turn to Isaiah 53:7 it says, “…like a lamb dumb before his shearer.” One says her, the other says his.

When the writer of Hebrews refers to Genesis 47:31, he says that as Jacob died, he “worshipped, leaning upon the top of his staff” (Heb. 11:21). But when we turn to Genesis 47:31, it says he “bowed himself upon the bed’s head.”

When Paul quoted Isaiah 28:16, he wrote: “Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed” (Rom.10:11). But when we turn to Isaiah 28:16, it says: “He that believeth shall not make haste.”

What is clear here is that New Testament writers did not always use the same version. This is beyond dispute. In these examples, they quoted from the Septuagint (Greek translation of the Old Testament) whereas the Masoretic text was used for the King James translation of the Old Testament.

I have no problem with people using or loving the KJV, but I have a problem with persons insisting that we must use only the KJV if we are to be in a right standing with God, and then employ all kinds of manipulation, bullying and ad hominem to validate that sectarian position.

When a teacher disseminates wild conspiracy theories and obvious falsehoods all in a bid to bind Christians under a tradition – such as sole usage of a certain bible version – it’s cultic indoctrination and it should be thoroughly rejected.

A KJV Onlyite wrote rather facetiously:

“Readability statistics generated from Grammatik and Word for Windows show why the KJV is 5th grade reading level, while the NKJV and NASB are 6th grade, and the NIV is 8th grade reading level! … According to readability statistics generated by Pro-Scribe, the KJV is easier to read than USA Today, People Magazine and most children’s books.” (Gail RiplingerThe Language of the King James Bible, AV Publications 1998 p. 159 emphasis hers).

Below are examples in the KJV refuting her assertions:

In the KJV, it is stated that Ruth went out to glean in the fields, “ears of corn” (Ruth 2:2). A 21st century reader would have maize corn in mind, but the Hebrew word there is se’orah which means “grain” or “ears of grain.” In ancient Israel, it was popular to grow wheat and barley, but not maize corn (Zea mays).

Also, in Mark 2:23 we read that Jesus “went through the corn fields on the sabbath day.” The image conjured up is of Jesus walking through maize fields, but maize was wholly unknown in the Old World, including Palestine until A.D. 1492.

The Greek word there refers to “fields of grain/wheat.” In old English, the word “corn” was generally used to refer to grains, wheat or barley as well as maize. But English language has changed since then.

In the KJV, we read about a person coming into a church wearing “gay clothing” (James 2:3). The Greek word translated “gay” is lampros which (like “lamp”) simply meant bright. In old English, “gay” in this context meant bright or attractive clothing, but today it means a homosexual. A modern reader can end up with a confused interpretation of that text.

In Acts 28:13, Paul and others were on a ship, when the KJV says “they fetched a compass.” Reading this, you would think they used an instrument with a little needle pointing to the cardinal points. But what we call a “compass” had not even been invented at that time! This expression simply meant to circle  around (see Josh. 6:4; 2 Sam. 5:23).

In the KJV we read: “…thou knowest all the travel that has befallen us” (Num. 20:14; cf. Lam. 3:5). The “travel” in the text was an old English word which meant travail or hardship. We use the word differently today.

In the KJV, we read: “Be strong, and quit yourselves like men” (1 Sam. 4:9). An almost identical wording is found in Paul’s admonition of the Corinthian Church: “Stand fast in the faith, quit you like men, be strong” (1Cor. 16:13). The word “quit,” as used here, is obsolete. In modern English we would say: “Conduct yourselves like men” or “be brave like men.”

The Song of Solomon 2:11, 12 in the KJV reads: “The winter is past, the rain is over and done; the flowers appear on the earth; the time of the singing of birds is come, and the voice of the turtle is heard in our land.”

Reading this text, one would immediately think of a turtle, a slow-moving reptile with a hard shell. But how does it have a voice, you’d wonder. In the age of the KJV translation, the word turtle meant a turtledove which is known to make a soft purring sound.

In the KJV, we read: “Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit…” (Col. 2:8). The word “spoil” here evokes images of decay and putrefaction, but the underlying Greek word means “to plunder” or “take as plunder.” To a 17th century English reader, “spoil” or “despoil” conveys that meaning, but not in the 21st century.

In the KJV we read that a delegation of Jewish leaders was sent to prophetess Hulda, who lived “in Jerusalem in the college” (2 Kgs. 22:14). In Elizabethan English, the word college had a different meaning than today.

The Hebrew word so translated means second. That’s why newer versions, including the NKJV, translated it “second quarter” or “second district” of Jerusalem. A modern reader who reads the KJV text would think Hulda was living in a college dorm!

1 Cor. 16:15 “they have addicted themselves to the ministry of the saints.” The word “addicted” is now used with negative connotation, like someone addicted to nicotine or drugs. Modern translations have correctly rendered the text as, “devoted themselves” to the ministry of the saints.

In 1 Thess. 4:15 Paul says “by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep.” In 1611, the word “prevent” doesn’t mean what we today mean by that word, namely, “to stop or hinder.”

That word as used back then meant “to precede” and the reader in 1611 wouldn’t have stumbled over its meaning, but a contemporary reader would stumble. A modern rendering would be, “we who are still alive, who are left till the coming of the Lord, will certainly not precede those who have fallen asleep” (NIV).

Similarly, Psalm 119:147 says “I prevented the dawning of the morning.” In today’s English, the word “prevent” means “precede.” The Psalmist was simply saying he rose before dawn!

Paul wrote, “For the mystery of iniquity doth already work: He who now letteth will let…” (2 Thess. 2:7). When the KJV was translated, “let” meant to hinder as Paul told the Romans, he had intended to come to them “but was let hitherto” (Rom. 1:13). He was hindered in coming to them. But today, the word “let” is used in an opposite sense. It implies allowing a person to do a thing, not hindering him from it!

In the KJV, we read that when Paul came to Jerusalem “he assayed to join himself to the apostles” (Acts 9:26). The word “assay” in modern English means substances being tested in the lab, but here it means Paul attempted to join the apostles.

Rom. 1:28 “…God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient.

Some ungodly things people do are actually convenient. In 14th century English, “convenient” was used to refer to what is proper and appropriate. So the text is referring to things that are indecent.

How does a contemporary reader without the Greek text, a foreign version or a modern translation understand 2 Cor. 6:11-13?

“O ye Corinthians, our mouth is open unto you, our heart is enlarged. Ye are not straitened in us but ye are straitened in your own bowels. Now for a recompense (I speak as unto my children), be ye also enlarged.”

Now compare this with the NIV:

“We have spoken freely to you, O Corinthians, and opened wide our hearts. We are not withholding our affections from you, but you are withholding yours from us. As a fair exchange–I speak as to my children–open wide your hearts also.”

In the light of these examples, no one with a modicum of fairness and honesty would argue that the language of the KJV is clearer than USA Today, People Magazine and most children’s books.

Obsolete Words

Isa. 8:21, “And they shall pass through it, hardly bestead and hungry.” Today we would say hard-pressed or greatly distressed.

Isa. 14:23 “…I will sweep it with the besom of destruction.” We now call it broom.

1 Cor. 12:13 “but by the Holy Ghost.” Due to different translation companies, there were inconsistencies in the KJV renderings of the Hebrew word “ruach” and Greek word “pneuma” in reference to the Holy Spirit. Some resorted to the old English use of “ghost” for all spirits. (Same for “Sodoma” in Rom. 9:29 instead of “Sodom”).

John 2:6 “…after the manner of the purifying of the Jews, containing two or three firkins apiece.” Today we would say three gallons.

Isa. 3:22 “The changeable suits of apparel, and the mantles, and the wimples, and the crisping pins.” In today’s expressions, the items listed are fine robes, capes, cloaks and purses!

Gen. 8:1 after the flood “the waters assuaged.” In modern expression, we would say, “the waters subsided.”

Isa. 19:8 “all they that cast angle into the brooks.” Now we call them “hooks” instead of angles.

Job 41:18 “By his neesings a light doth shine.” This is an obsolete word that puzzles a contemporary reader. The right word is sneezing.

Jer. 4:22 “For my people is foolish … they are sottish children.” Now we say stupid or senseless children.

There’s no child in the 5th grade or primary school that would have a grasp of the KJV than the NIV.

Grammatical inaccuracies

English, like most other languages, has evolved over a period of 400 years, therefore, many words in the KJV that were grammatically correct in 1611, are now awkward and flat out wrong today:

Phil. 1:23 “betwist” [between]
1 Thess. 1:8 “God-ward” [toward God]
Matt. 25:44 “athirst” [thirsty]
John 21:3 “I go a fishing” [I am going fishing]
Matt. 25:35 “for I was an hungred” [for I was hungry]
Gen.26:31 “betimes” [early]
Ruth 4:4 “to advertise thee” [to advise you]
James 1:25 “whoso” [whosoever]
1Cor. 7:28 “but and if thou marry” [but if you marry]
Matt. 13:21 “dureth” [endure].

Embarrassing/Vulgar words

The socio-cultural expression of 17th century England is not the same as today. There are some words that were acceptable back then that would be outright rude, embarrassing and even vulgar by modern standards. Here are some examples:

1 Kings 21:21 “him that pisseth against the wall.” Instead of using such an embarrassing description, newer translations use an euphemistic term: “male.”

Song of Solomon 5:4 “My beloved put in his hand by the hole of the door, and my bowels were moved for him.”

An American lady once quoted this in a forum some years ago and wrote, “See, there’s fisting (a sexually perverse act) in the Bible.” If she had read this verse in any newer version, she would have been cleared of her ignorance that bowels was used of the heart in old English.

Gen. 12:16 “and he asses … and she asses.” If you read this out to a teenage or youth group, it will be met with snickers due to the urban usage of “asses.” Newer translations render it as male and female donkeys.

Hebrew 12:8 “then are ye bastards…” This is a strong word. So for proper decorum, “illegitimate” is used in modern translations.

2 Peter 2:16 “the dumb ass speaking with man’s voice.” This is also a strong word which for the avoidance of unnecessary distraction is now rendered as “mute donkey.”

Scholars in linguistics and philosophy of language would agree that language has the dual roles of communication and representation. It is a receptacle of human thoughts and the medium through which we give expression to our subjectivities.

Thus, the central purpose for having a Bible translation is to convey the meaning of words (in the Hebrew and Greek originals) to people in such a way that they can understand it as clear as tomorrow’s newspaper.

The KJV may have served this purpose over 400 years ago, but by modern English and translational standards, it can at best, puzzle and at worst, mislead many a reader.

The rigid insistence that Christians must stick to a less clear, obsolete and rather complex translation – which is difficult for common people to grasp – is similar to the dogma of Rome that made the Latin Vulgate the only “authorized text” in Europe, leading to the dark ages of ignorance and deception.

The Word of God is meant to be lucid even to a child, otherwise it would be a travesty of the Gospel that is being preached from it which should give light to everyone.

An Exchange on Seeking Wealth in Masonry

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Since the day I published Freemasonry: A Critical Look on Facebook, my page has been spammed by several Illuminati recruiters (more like scammers) appealing to people to join the Illuminati brotherhood with promises of great wealth and power.

I’ve also received several feedback from guys asking how they can join Masonry. Apparently, many of them at a first glance, thought the article was pro-Masonry. They didn’t bother reading it entirely before asking me how to join.

The following exchange is an example. The young guy (I’d call him Shaka), from South Africa, persistently messaged me to tell him how he could become a part of the Order of DeMolay. His words appear in blue.

To join Masonry I must be at least 21 of age?

I need to ask, why are you so obsessed with Masonry? Are you a Christian?

Yes I’m a Christian I was raised that way. But since I’m old now I’d love to join Masonry.

Why do you wish to join Masonry? Have you been saved by repentance and faith in Jesus Christ? Are you filled with the Holy Spirit? Do you study the Word of God or you’re experiencing a crisis in your Christian walk?

I ask these questions because there are many people who were raised Christian but have never had a personal relationship with God. They only follow the forms and liturgy of a denomination but have never experienced the life transforming power of the Holy Spirit.

There’s no way you would have a sound relationship with God, an understanding of Christian doctrine and live in the practical reality of the Faith and want to join Masonry.

I’d love to join masonry for empowerment, to uplift my life, and to live a better life. Also I’d love to learn about all the rituals and spells they perform for their goals/aim. We aIl love God, but sometimes I feel like, I need to do better than what I know.

What manner of “empowerment” do you seek in Masonry that you can’t find in Christ Jesus?

What “upliftment” do you desire other than the one that God the Father has given us, raising us up to sit in heavenly places above all principalities and powers? (Eph. 2:6).

What “better life” do you seek outside the forgiveness and eternal life offered by Jesus? (Jn. 5:24)

Why would any child of God be fascinated by occult spells and rituals which God has clearly denounced in His Word? (Deut. 18:19-12; Gal. 5:19-21). That was why I asked you those questions to probe where you stand and your answers were revealing.

You can’t know God as a Christian, and follow the way of Christ and want to learn “the ways of the heathen.” It’s like professing faith in the Lamb while pledging allegiance to the dragon.

If you have the Spirit of God living in you, your life will show forth the fruit of that relationship and you won’t be wondering what you need to be doing, because we don’t need any rite, any spell, any cult or esoteric teachings to reveal to us what we are to do in pleasing God.

Through the blood of Christ, we have peace with God (Romans 5:1) and there’s no religion or philosophy in this world that offers such peace. Jesus is the only way, truth and life.

Again, do you know the real identity of the god worshipped in Masonry? I will provide some quotes for you. Albert Mackey, one of the “modern” fathers of Masonry said:

“Be assured … that God is equally present with the pious Hindu in the temple, the Jew in the synagogue, the Mohammedan in the mosque, and the Christian in the church.” (Mackey, Albert, Mackey’s Revised Encyclopedia of Freemasonry, pp. 409-410).

This is a theological framework that accommodates all kinds of gods and lords in a syncretic adoration. Henry W. Coil, the most highly regarded Masonic scholar states:

“The Masonic test is a Supreme Being and any qualification added is an innovation… Monotheism has been espoused as the sole religious dogma of Freemasonry by some authors …This obviously violates Masonic principles, for it requires belief in a specific kind of supreme deity.” (Coil, Henry Wilson, Coil’s Masonic Encyclopedia, pp. 516-517).

In other words, believing in the one true God is a violation of Masonic principles. A Jewish or Christian Mason cannot tell a satanist that he couldn’t be a Mason because his supreme being, the devil, is not the real God. That violates “Masonic principles.” But what does the Bible say? See Exodus 20:1-2; Isaiah 46:9, Isaiah 45:5; Jeremiah 1:16; 1Cor. 8:5.

The same Coli wrote:

“Men have to decide whether they want a god like the ancient Hebrew Jahweh, a partisan, tribal god, with whom they can talk and argue and from whom they can hide, if necessary, or a boundless, eternal, universal undenominational and international, divine spirit, so vastly removed from the speck called man that he cannot be known. So soon as man begins to laud his god and endow him with the most perfect human attributes such as justice, mercy, beneficence, etc., the divine essence is depreciated and despoiled.” (pp. 516-517).

In plain terms, the actual “God” of Masonry is one that is unknown, one that embraces all deities, but rejects the God of the Bible as partisan and provincial. This is also the impersonal, universal god force of Gnostics and New Agers.

Under the Royal Arch degree (York Rite), a secret mystical word which is said to be the secret name of the god of Freemasonry is revealed to initiates as JAH-BUL-ON.

The High Priest of the Royal Arch says that this is “the divine Logos”, or “Word” referred to in John 1:1-5. This odd name is so “sacred” that it can only be revealed to the Mason in the presence of three Royal Arch Masons while kneeling under a “Royal Arch” formed by their intertwined hands!

But here’s a break down:

JAH (the first syllable) represents the name Yahweh or Jehovah, the name of the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. This name appears in the use of the word, Hallelujah, which means “Praise Jah!”

BUL (the second syllable) represents the name Ba’al or Bel. This is the name of the fertility god worshipped with licencious rites and human sacrifice all through the ancient Near East. Baal was the god of Jezebel and Ahab, perhaps the most wicked couple ever to sit on the throne of Israel (I Kings 16:29-33).

ON (the third syllable) represents the name of the Egyptian sun god, Osiris. It is the name of his sacred city, Heliopolis, (city of the sun in Greek) in Egypt (Genesis 41:45, 50).

Here we have a chimeric deity. A deliberately conjured blasphemous trinity. Why a Christian would want to worship a false god because of power, ambition or wisdom beats me unless, he has rejected God to bow to the desires of the god of the world.

Again, In the degree of the Knights of East and West in the Scottish Rite, there is also a “Sacred Word” in the 17° as well. This name is Abaddon (Blanchard, J., Scottish Rite Masonry Illustrated, The Complete Ritual, Ezra Cook Publications, Chicago, 1974, pp. 453-457)

A quick trip to the New Testament will reveal that, according to God’s Word, there is nothing sacred about the name Abaddon. In Revelation 9:11, we are told:

“They [demonic creatures from the abyss] had as king over them the angel of the Abyss, whose name in Hebrew is Abaddon and in Greek is Apollyon.”

This demon is invoked in satanic rites for destruction, occult warfare and death. Masonry is demon worship. It’s a destructive group. Finally, here is what Albert Pike said:

“Lucifer, the Light-bearer! Strange and mysterious name to give to the Spirit of Darkness! Lucifer, the Son of the Morning! Is it he who bears the Light, and with its splendors intolerable blinds feeble, sensual or selfish Souls? Doubt it not! for traditions are full of Divine Revelations and Inspirations: and Inspiration is not of one Age nor one Creed” (Morals and Dogma, p. 321).

If this is what you want to get yourself into after following Jesus, then I must plead with you, flee for your own eternal safety back to the loving arms of the Lord Jesus.

I used to love Jezebel or Lilith…

Let’s see. Jezebel was a tyrant who corrupted her husband, as well as the nation, by promoting pagan worship. Such a wicked idolatrous queen has no appeal to a Christian.

Lilith is also a female demon worshipped in Witchcraft and regarded as the “patroness” of infant destruction, female domination and sexual liberation. Why you would hold these up as figures of endearment reinforces my suspicions about your background.

I believe in man power and free will, I hate being controlled. I believe im my own king!

What do you mean by “man power”? The two female figures you mentioned earlier are icons of female domination and control, so maybe if you can answer the series of questions I asked at the onset, I can figure out whether you’ve ever served King Jesus or you have always followed “king self.”

And no I dont want to be a satanist, I know many and all of them are poor.

That’s interesting, given that Masonry itself is Luciferian. It’s quite revealing too, that the only reason you reject classical Satanism is because many satanists are poor.

Only Masonry are rich, and in control.

Name them. And I will tell you how these Masons are (or were) not in control. Seems you have been fed with the Illuminati “world control” propaganda.

I love jesus Christ but why ain’t we like Abraham?

Because Christians are followers of Christ. We become partakers of the blessings of Abraham through Christ (Gal. 3:14). The physical outworking of these blessings will depend on God’s will for our lives.

Besides, Abraham was tested to yield up the most important thing God promised him: Isaac. What have you yielded up for God?

Is it a good thing for a Christian to be poor and suffer so that we can get to heaven?

Poverty and suffering are not conditions of getting to heaven and I wonder where you got such misinformation from.

I believe God is God of wonders, but sometimes I get tired. I hate being poor and useless.

It depends on which God you have in mind. The God of the Bible is indeed a God of wonders, but He’s also sovereign. He cannot be “forced” or manipulated to do wonders to satiate man’s endless wants. Those who appear to control and compel a god to do their bidding are using demons.

Jesus said: “But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.” (Matt. 6:33).

That’s the way God has arranged it. First, you become a part of His kingdom, then you seek His righteousness, then you are qualified to receive His packages. He doesn’t organize royal banquets for monsters. They first have to be transformed.

The war between God and satan doesnt involve us! But look who are suffering? It’s us!

The cosmos is not a chess game between God and Satan. That is the error of dualism. God created all things, including Lucifer/Satan, and all powers belong to God. Satan was defeated 2,000 years ago by Jesus Christ at Calvary.

Although Jesus didn’t promise us a free ride, we are victorious in Him. “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world” (Jn. 16:33).

And the 10 commandments are hard to follow.

Well, try Satan’s commandments then! The Christian ethic is actually more than the 10 commandments. “This command I am giving you today is not too difficult for you, and it is not beyond your reach.” (Deut. 30:11).

That was what God told the children of Israel, yet we as Christians having the Holy Spirit are in a better position.

Gold and silver is of god. But do we have one? No! Is it a good thing for men to be poor? Earth was given to us, and we are the sons of god just like jesus. Where is our treasure then? In heaven? I dont think so.

This topic of material wealth and the believer demands a separate topic. It’s not something that can be capsulated in sound bytes and short replies. Please read this

I love and believe in Jesus, i wish he can give me what he promised to give me.

There’s a difference between what you think God owes you and what God has really promised to you. The statements you have made previously border on the former. But note this: God doesn’t revolve around us, we revolve around Him.

When I started this blog in 2014, I had nothing. I was poor, unemployed, unhappy and in despair that my post graduate program might not come out good. I remember once telling God to give me a solid reason to live, perhaps I would find the strength to live by it.

But I look back today and I’m grateful that even when I had no friend, no earthly helper, no money and no hope, God changed my story. And He did these while I was standing for Him.

I didn’t demand God blessed me before I served Him in any capacity. The Bible itself furnishes us with many examples of godly men who stood even in the face of death, persecution, apostasy and hardship. Seek first His kingdom, not rituals, not spells, not cult groups.

If i knew the rituals of wealth i would have performed them by now. Ohh and i know about the other gods.

But here you are seeking Masonic rituals for “empowerment” and “uplifting.” If Jesus had bowed and worshipped Satan in exchange for the goods things of this world, where will we be today?

If they are really fake. Then where do they get the power from?

Satan.

And why didn’t jesus send them straight to hell?

Because there is an appointed time for their punishment. God doesn’t send people straight to hell immediately they sin because of His justice, mercy and love.

Some people who are currently in Satan’s service will come to know Christ before it’s too late while some will leave the Christian fold and align themselves with Satan. It’s not over until it’s over.

The DeMolay. What do they really do, and what are the out come/ benefit of being with them?

In answer to your question, I will quote a portion of a book by William Schnoebelen, an ex-32° degree Mason. It’s titled, Masonry Beyond the Light. This is taken from chapter 10, “Kindergartens for Satanism”:

“There is one youth order which stands out above the others in terms of its audacious embrace of evil. That is the DeMolay order for boys. Though all the youth orders share the dangers mentioned above, DeMolays are especially dangerous because they serve as the incubator for future Masons.

Although I never was in the DeMolays, I have a dear friend and colleague in the ministry who was, but is now saved by Jesus. From his personal experience as a member, he has referred to the DeMolays as a “kindergarten for Satanism.”

He believes it was a major stepping stone for him into occultism and witchcraft. It is an especially grisly jest to name the Masonic order for young men after Jacques DeMolay, the last Grand Master of the Templars.

The DeMolay ritual makes a great hero of its namesake. He is held up as a paragon of manly loyalty and virtue. What the order’s ritual does not tell its young charges is that DeMolay was burned at the stake for being a homosexual, a pedophile (lover of young boys), and for practicing witchcraft and worshiping a false god named Baphomet! (See chapter 15 for more on the Templars’ history.)

Naming a boys’ order after DeMolay is like naming a shelter for battered woman after Jack the Ripper, or a home for unwed mothers after serial killer Ted Bundy!

Though the Templars’ history is controversial, DeMolay died cursing those who put him to death—hardly a model of young Christian manhood! Why, with all the great men in western history (including Jesus!), would the Masons pick such a corrupt, controversial and obscene man to be a role model for their young men?

Why not Stephen, the first martyr? Why not Joshua? The answer is because DeMolay is one of the central “idols” of the Freemasonic pantheon, probably second in stature only to Hiram Abiff. The DeMolay ritual prepares the young Mason-to-be for a life of involvement in societies dedicated to the worship of Baphomet!”

***

You are indeed the person of truth, I understand you. Were you part of the masonic or any of this?…

No, I wasn’t part of Masonry, but I began researching about it several years ago. I read books authored by researchers and also by those who were formerly members.

Besides, there’s a variant of Masonry called “Ogboni” here in Nigeria which gave me a traditional perspective of the pagan roots of Freemasonry.

 

The Two Aspects of Jesus’ Coming

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In this post, I will be addressing eschatology from the doctrinal context of two stages of Christ’s second coming: rapture of the saints and the return of Christ to earth.

There are three major eschatological positions adhered to by various Christian denominations which determine what details they believe about the second coming of Jesus Christ. These are:

Amillennialism

This is the prevalent eschatology among Lutherans, Anglicans, Calvinists, Eastern Orthodoxy, Roman Catholicism, the Amish and some Messianic Jews. It posits that there will not be a literal thousand-year reign of Christ on earth. They affirm that we are currently in the 1000 years mentioned in Revelation 20.

Amillennialists do not deny the literal return of Christ, but they believe the kingdom of God is the present church age; Satan is currently bound and there would be no future intervening millennium before the new earth.

To them, the second coming of Christ is a single event, thus it cannot be termed “imminent” (i.e. Christ can come at any moment). [1]

Postmillennialism

Postmillennialism was a dominant theological belief among American Protestants who promoted reform movements in the 19th and 20th century such as abolitionism and reconstructionism.

It may be defined as “that view of the last things which holds that the Kingdom of God is now being extended in the world through the preaching of the Gospel and the saving work of the Holy Spirit in the hearts of individuals, that the world would eventually be Christianized, and that the return of Christ is to occur at the close of a long period of righteousness and peace commonly called the ‘Millennium.’ ” [2]

Premillennialism

This means that Christ will return to establish His earthly reign of one thousand years. There are, however, two distinct forms of premillennialism, one known as “historic” premillennialism (or nondispensational premillennialism), while the other is known as dispensational premillennialism. [3]

It’s in premillennialism that you have pretribulationism. This is the doctrine that the church will escape the great tribulation through the rapture.

Many non-pretribulationists (amillennialists, postmillennialists and posttribulationists) totally reject the idea of the rapture of believers. This point of difference has been a bone of contention between many a Christian.

It has gotten so bad that Christians who are premillennial or pretribulationists are unfairly labelled as vile heretics and often ostracized. I have personally been blocked – not merely removed – from several Christian Facebook groups on this basis. Yet, most of these group admins would readily accept non-Christians as members.

I must also add that I’ve observed this sort of “circle the bunkers” approach to be quite prevalent among American Christians. Most groups managed by Christians from other continents seem to be more tolerable of diverging eschatological details.

But I believe what should be the unifying factor is the belief in the return of Christ. John Feinberg has demonstrated that one must first examine the basic Bible passages about the rapture and the return of Christ and then look at secondary issues in the light of the primary passages. [4]

Distinguishing Carefully

There are certain similarities between the rapture passages and the second coming passages, since they both refer to future events relating to our Lord’s return. But similarity does not mean they are referring to the same event.

There are enough substantial differences between the two aspects of Christ’s coming so as to render them as two separate and distinct events.

The distinction between these two phases of the second coming is substantiated by the contrast between those passages that refer to our Lord’s coming for His church and those referring to His coming to judge the unbelieving world.

Pretribulationists merely need to prove that the dissimilarities between rapture passages and the return passages are significant enough to indicate that they are separate events.

Thomas Ice provided the following list to identify those distinctions.

Rapture Passages:

John 14:1-3, Romans 8:19, 1 Cor. 1:7-8; 15:51-53; 16:22, Phil. 3:20-21, Col. 3:4, 1 Thess. 1:10; 2:19, 4:13-18; 5:9, 5:23; 2 Thess. 2:1, 1 Tim. 6:14; 2 Tim. 4:1, Titus 2:13, Hebrews 9:28, James 5:7-9, 1 Peter 1:7, 13, 1 John 2:28-3:2, Revelation 3:10.

Second Coming Passages:

Daniel 2:44-45, 7:9-14, 12:1-3, Zech. 14:1-15, Matt. 13:41, 24:15-31, 26:64, Mark 13:14-27; 14:62, Luke 21:25-28; Acts 1:9-11, 3:19-21, 1 Thess. 3:13, 2 Thess. 1:6-10, 2:8, 2 Peter 3:1-14, Jude 14-15, Revelation 1:7, 19:11-20:6, 22:.7, 12.

Ice comments that the rapture is characterized in the New Testament as a “translation coming,” in which Christ comes for His church, taking her to His Father’s house. Here He claims her as His bride and the marriage supper of the Lamb begins.

Whatever view one holds in regard to our Lord’s return, one thing is clear in prophetic Scripture. The marriage occurs in heaven (Rev. 19:7-9) before the triumphal return of Christ with His redeemed church at His side (Rev. 19:11-16). [5]

The return of Christ is a series of events fulfilling all end-time prophecies. These include predictions of His coming for His church and His coming with His church.

Pretribulationists divide the return of Christ in two main phases: the rapture of the church and the second coming of Christ.

In the first aspect, our Lord comes to take His own (the living and the dead) to be with Him. In the second aspect, He returns with His resurrected and raptured saints to win the battle of Armageddon and to establish His kingdom on earth (Revelation 5:10, “and we shall reign on the earth”).

Pretribulationists place the seven-year tribulation period between the rapture and the return. This allows for the proper fulfillment of Daniel’s “seventieth week,” and it clearly separates the rapture from the return.

It is vital to substantiate the adequate dissimilarities between the events of the rapture and events associated with the return.

1. At the rapture, Christ comes FOR His own (e.g John 14:3) while at His return, He comes WITH his own

2. At rapture, He comes in the air (1 Thess. 4:17). At His return, He comes to the earth (Zech. 14:4)

3. At rapture, there is removal of believers (1 Thess. 4:17). At His return, Christ is manifested (Mal. 4:2)

4. At the rapture, ONLY His own see Him (1 Thess. 4:13-18). At His return EVERY EYE shall see Him (Rev. 1:7)

5. After rapture, the Great Tribulation begins (2 Thess. 1:6-9). After His return, the Millennial Kingdom begins (Rev. 20:1-7)

6. At the rapture, the saved are delivered from wrath (1 Thess 1:10). At His return, the unsaved experience the wrath of God (Rev. 6:12-17).

7. No signs precede the rapture (1 Thess. 5:1-3) whereas signs precede the second coming (Luke 21:11, 15)

8. The focus of the rapture is on the Lord and church (1 Thess. 4:13-18). The focus of His return is on Israel and the Kingdom (Matt. 24:14)

9. After rapture, the world is deceived (2 Thess. 2:3-12). At His return, Satan is bound (Rev. 20:1-2)

The church’s hope is the rapture. She awaits the Savior who is coming for His bride. The church may endure persecution, trouble, and difficulty in this present time. But she is not the object of divine wrath.

The church does not await destruction as the world does. Rather, she awaits the coming of her Lord and King. Peter explains that the present world is “reserved for fire, being kept for the day of judgment and destruction of ungodly men” (2 Pet. 3:7).

The Bible pictures the church as the wife of the Lamb (Rev. 19:7-9). She is not the object of the wrath of the Lamb. Jesus will not beat her up and then marry her! Or marry her, then beat her up! He may discipline her in love. But His ultimate purpose is to present her to the Father as His perfect bride. [6]

The biblical terms used to express rapture are “caught up” (Greek: harpazō) and “gathered together” (Great: episunagōgēs). Greek scholars observe that harpazō is the same verb used of Paul (“whether it was in the body or out of the body,” 2 Cor. 12:2-4 NOV); Philip (the Spirit… suddenly took Philip away,” Acts 8:39 NIV); and the man child (“snatched up to God”). This term was also used by Christ in John 10:28-29 where He promised that no one can “snatch” His own out of His hand. [7]

Therefore, the rapture is the time when Christ will “snatch” His people out of the earth and we will be “gathered together” with the Lord (2 Thess. 2:1). The basic meaning is to “assemble together.” The rapture church is pictured as the great “assembly” in the sky. As Milligan explains it:

“The word goes back to the saying of the Lord I Mark 13:27 (“gather His elect”), and is found elsewhere in the New Testament only in Hebrews 10:25, where it is applied to the ordinary religious assembling of believers as an anticipation of tge great assembling at the Lord’s coming.” [8]

The rapture (or “translation”) of the church is often paralleled to the “raptures” of Enoch (Genesis 5:24) and Elijah (2 Kings 2:12). In each case, the individual disappeared or was caught up into heaven. At His ascension, our Lord Himself was “taken up” into heaven (Acts 1:9).

Indeed, there is a rapture and there is the second coming of Christ and a millennial reign of Christ on earth. There’s no justification for spiritualizing Revelation 20 any more than Genesis 1 or John 20.

Notes

[1] Louis Berkhof, Systematic Theology, Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1941, pp. 696-703.

[2] Loraine Boettner, The Millennium, Reformed Press, 1966, p. 14.

[3] Paul Enns, The Moody Handbook of Theology, Moody Press, Chicago, 2008, p. 409.

[4] John Feinberg, “Arguing for the Rapture,” in Pre-Trib Answers to Post-Trib Questions (August-September 1994, p. 2.

[5] Thomas Ice, “Why the Rapture and Second Coming are Distinct Events,” in Pre-Trib Answers to Post-Trib Questions, pp. 2-3.

[6] Earth’s Final Hour, Ed Hindson, Evangel Publication, 1999, pp. 112-116.

[7] C. F. Hogg and W. E. Vine, The Epistles to the Thessalonians, London: Exeter Press, 1929, p. 144.

[8] George Milligan, St. Paul’s Epistles to the Thessalonians, NY: Revell, 1908, vol. 2, p. 96.