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4 Stars Out Of 5
An Eye-Opening Read
September 4, 2013
I'll admit it--I was a Dispensationalist before I read this book, albeit un-researched. I grew up, as did many, believing the message of the Thief in the Night videos and the Left Behind series. But then a friend got me questioning what I believe and why I believe, and handed me this book.
Rossing makes an excellent case for the dangers of Dispensationalism, how it is based on fear, not love, and how it influences our everyday lives, even our political views. She takes a close look at Scripture and explains how they support alternative views of the end times. Then she makes a case for amillennialism's message of hope in Revelation. We serve a God of hope and redemption, not one of fear and tribulation.
The drawback of this book is that Rossing spends a considerable part of the book criticizing Dispensationalism, rather than simply making a case for Amillennialism. I was almost convinced of Amillennialism before I started reading, but if I were not, I think her negative tone would have turned me away from her message, rather than be convinced by it.
This is an outstanding book. Prof. Rossing has done a great service for the Church in simplifying many of the issues that are at stake. She has pinpointed the sources of many of the misinformed biblical and theological interpretations which have led to misguided eschatological understandings. These understandings are all too common and drive much of the evangelical movement in the United States and often, unfortunately, U.S. public and international policy. The book is well researched and biblically sound.
This is a book of lies. I am still so sad that I wasted good money on this book that will end up in the garbage. The author bashes other theories and fictional books by using half scriptures and twisting them to say what she wants. I should have been tipped off when the secular press had good things to say about it. I would not recommend this book to anyone. She spends much time bashing other opinions and other authors (something that I do not respect) and very little time providing scripture to back her ideas. I do find it amusing that she quotes the left behind series, which is a fictional series.
It is amazing to me how strongly people defend certain ideas as being 'true' Christianity or the pure history of Christ's purpose for our lives yet I find out that those ideas are relatively recent in Christian history. Why do we Americans (and it is primarily an American phenomenom) think that we are the end-timers and have a full grasp of God's will and the scriptures? Why do we so willingly try to decipher every little detail and literalism from the symbolic writings of Revelation yet conveniently ignore the very literal laws written so clearly in Leviticus as we enjoy our Sunday ham and other forbidden fruits of the earth?<br /><br />Perhaps even more dangerous, is that <I>Left Behind</I> and <I>Late, Great Planet Earth</I> types of theology feed on fear, not love of God. God didn't create Eden out of fear. Nor was Jesus sent out of fear. Rather, God has interacted in our lives out of love. I believe that <I>The Rapture Exposed</I> allows us to move away from a fear-oriented faith to one that is focused on living today as children of a living, loving God. We live each day as if it could be our last, loving and accomplishing as much as possible because we are loved and gifted with God's grace . . . not because we fear being excluded from a final victory.