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The "end Times"


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Someone on my FB just posted a story to a bunch of bees dying in CO and said that it was another "end times" sign. Since deconverting I haven't really given much thought to the "end times" stuff. Even when I was a Christian, I didn't take it that seriously. It always seemed that everyone thought their generation would be the last one, that things were going to hell in a handbasket, that these were wicked times, etc.

 

I was wondering what your thoughts are about the end of the world type of theories, now that you are no longer a Christian?

 

My initial thoughts are that it is just another tactic to scare people into repenting. I see how our actions are/have damaged the planet (pollution, etc), but I've never been overly concerned about it. If you think about things in a grander scale, there were millions of species that went extinct before humanity, and after we finally all die out, there will likely be millions more.

 

I don't think we should be overly abusive to the planet and/or not try to minimize the damage we are doing, but I don't think we need to wet ourselves every time a species of obscure insect is on the verge of extinction either. I think it makes sense that we try to preserve the world for future generations, but I don't necessarily think that humanity will be around forever or even for a significant amount of time (in the grand scheme of things).

 

I guess we have more of a capacity for mass destruction now with atomic weapons and chemical/biological warfare, and there's part of me that can almost see some type of a zombie apocalypse happening (if it does, I totally get Daryl on my team!) that wipes out a good portion of humanity, but I don't know that it's not enevitable anyway?

 

Anyone have any thoughts?

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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_Disappointment

 

I'll try to find it but there was another member who listed out the dates of every single Apocalypse/Second-Coming predicted event by Christian leaders dating back 2,000 years to Paul. 

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Even the ancients knew that civilizations rise and fall---end times is just an overblown fall of civilization story, with lots of spooky woo-woo stuff in it.

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Ah, here we go - http://www.ex-christian.net/topic/12689-a-partial-history-of-the-end-of-the-world/?hl=%2Bapocalypse+%2Bdates#.U9B5v_ldWA4

 

Also, was it Overcame Faith who had a great series of threads on the end times? I can't recall but will do some digging. 

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One thing for sure is that the reduced population of bees is a serious issue for agriculture. However, to tie that in to the Christian concept of end-times is another matter altogether. End-time loving Christians latch onto everything that could be a significant issue for human survival and declare one way or another that it all ties in to their view of Biblical end-times issues.

 

Here is the bottom line as I see it: Jesus did return in the metaphorical sense during the Roman destruction of Jerusalem and the temple in 70 a.d. In Matthew's Olivette discourse, it was Jesus who orchestrated those events in retribution for the misuse of the temple and for the people rejecting him as the Messiah. He returned on a cloud, not actually, but metaphorically, and punished the nation by calling the Roman army to do its deed of destruction. That is it. Biblical end-times has nothing to do with our modern times.

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Overcame Faith was kind enough to respond to my inquiry and the thread in question is linked below. Great information, and I highly recommend reading it. 

 

http://www.ex-christian.net/topic/44234-top-ten-reasons-not-to-fear-biblical-end-times-scenarios/#.U9B-PPldWA5

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SDAs (my former sect) are notorious with this end times shit.  They always hold revelation seminars to "understand the book" and unlock the mysteries of god.  Looking back, that was just pure arrogance.  A group of people thinking they know the "true" way of christianity as opposed to the other 40k+ folks?  Pretty much the same arrogance that I now see in the Den.

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I guess I lucked out. My former church did not teach end times theology. They were obsessed with kingdom coming soon, but it would be an organic sort of thing springing from communities of believers and not a series of horrific events ala Left Behind.

 

Some did believe in end times though. It just wasn't taught formally. My mentor was a literalist and she wholeheartedly believes that the tribulation will happen and everyone will fall down and praise Jesus when it does. She just doesn't say it in church because it goes against their uber-tolerant statement of faith that all members must confess.

 

I think that the end times is something that all believers really want to happen. They want their choices, their god, to be vindicated. It is about being right and not about love of or appreciation for their fellow man or any of the millions of life forms on the planet. End times theology is like Yahweh's bath salts induced revenge fantasy, IMO.

 

He is sitting somewhere in heaven, :jerkoff:, like "oh yeah, when I create the antichrist and he convinces 99% of humanity to deny me and accept the mark....ooooohhh....I'll vaporize the True Christians and we'll have a gay old time as we watch the world I created and the people I loved kill each other. Until I get sick of this shit and set it on fire. The smell of burning flesh .....oooooohhhhh........yeah that's the ticket!...everyone's dead and my fan club is all right here kissing my ass.....it's just about there......."

 

---------

 

What do I believe? The world will not end. Not today, not tomorrow, not at any preordained time according to an ancient text. If the world does end, we're all dead and that's the end.

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I will consider it. I do write. Mostly science fiction and erotic lit though. Science fiction for fun, erotica for profit. I've only done one fan fic before and that was based around a manga. :shrug:

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Totally off topic, but something funny that came to mind.  I attended a little elementary church school, and one day I was asked to read from Song of Solomon.  Honest.  THAT Song of Solomon... as a 5th grader.

 

First erotica I read was the bible...  zDuivel7.gif

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Someone on my FB just posted a story to a bunch of bees dying in CO and said that it was another "end times" sign. Since deconverting I haven't really given much thought to the "end times" stuff. Even when I was a Christian, I didn't take it that seriously. It always seemed that everyone thought their generation would be the last one, that things were going to hell in a handbasket, that these were wicked times, etc.

 

I was wondering what your thoughts are about the end of the world type of theories, now that you are no longer a Christian?

 

My initial thoughts are that it is just another tactic to scare people into repenting. I see how our actions are/have damaged the planet (pollution, etc), but I've never been overly concerned about it. If you think about things in a grander scale, there were millions of species that went extinct before humanity, and after we finally all die out, there will likely be millions more.

 

I don't think we should be overly abusive to the planet and/or not try to minimize the damage we are doing, but I don't think we need to wet ourselves every time a species of obscure insect is on the verge of extinction either. I think it makes sense that we try to preserve the world for future generations, but I don't necessarily think that humanity will be around forever or even for a significant amount of time (in the grand scheme of things).

 

I guess we have more of a capacity for mass destruction now with atomic weapons and chemical/biological warfare, and there's part of me that can almost see some type of a zombie apocalypse happening (if it does, I totally get Daryl on my team!) that wipes out a good portion of humanity, but I don't know that it's not enevitable anyway?

 

Anyone have any thoughts?

 

So just bees then?

 

What about the millions of other exinct species that have occurred since man started mucking around on the planet? They just don't count? we ate them all?

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Those who are convinced that the end is near should be prevented from bringing it about by those who know better.

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Here is the bottom line as I see it: Jesus did return in the metaphorical sense during the Roman destruction of Jerusalem and the temple in 70 a.d. In Matthew's Olivette discourse, it was Jesus who orchestrated those events in retribution for the misuse of the temple and for the people rejecting him as the Messiah. He returned on a cloud, not actually, but metaphorically, and punished the nation by calling the Roman army to do its deed of destruction. That is it. Biblical end-times has nothing to do with our modern times.

 

Isn't this called preterism or something?  I must say, it makes a lot of sense.  

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Here is the bottom line as I see it: Jesus did return in the metaphorical sense during the Roman destruction of Jerusalem and the temple in 70 a.d. In Matthew's Olivette discourse, it was Jesus who orchestrated those events in retribution for the misuse of the temple and for the people rejecting him as the Messiah. He returned on a cloud, not actually, but metaphorically, and punished the nation by calling the Roman army to do its deed of destruction. That is it. Biblical end-times has nothing to do with our modern times.

 

 

Isn't this called preterism or something?  I must say, it makes a lot of sense.

Yes, I believe that is what it is called, except I disagree with the preterists who maintain they were actual prophecies. I am convinced it was history written to look like a prophecy having been fulfilled. Nonetheless, I agree with them on the timeframe of the events that were the subject of the "prophecies".

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It is not just about the fact that fear sells - it's also certain other things.

 

Some Christians really long for the day when non-believers get their just deserts - i.e. the day when the shit hits the fan for us who supposedly will get left behind.

 

In addition, there's a certain egomania over it - lots of Christians seem to think along this line: "once I am dead, what would God need to keep the world around for any longer?" And if that death isn't even a regular painful death by disease or whatever, but God pulling you out of your shoes and instantly into heaven, what could be better than that. And lots of born again Christians seem to think that exactly they are the ones that deserve not having to die and being the last set of people God will accept. 

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Fear sells. It's an effective motivator. See how much commerce is tied to promoting these scary theories.

Exactly true. A nice example is of the Kohoutek Scam, I have a link to the story here: http://www.surroundedbyreality.com/Misc/Know/Kohoutek.asp ..

People are afraid of dying, so they will easily buy something that is rumored to lengthen life or save them.

Which is another reason why we created religion, to ease our pain.

Of course, you all know this, but I'm reminding you, I guess!

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According to scientific consensus (including related peer reviewed research), the "end times" involve:

 

1)  Heat death for the known universe a long time from now (trillions of years).

 

2)  Change to Sol when it runs out of hydrogen fuel, resulting in expansion of Sol, likely engulfing of Earth and deterioration of Earth's orbit such that it falls into Sol and is annihilated (5 billion years).

 

3)  Collision of our Milky Way galaxy with M31 (Andromeda Galaxy) which may result it massive gravitational effects on our solar system and may result in a repositioning of Earth such that carbon based life can no longer exist on Earth (2 billion years+-).

 

4)  Evolution of homo sapiens sapien to one or more new species which are quite different (millions of years).

 

5)  The possibility of extinction of homo sapiens sapien as a species due to future environmental factors (thousands to hundreds of thousands of years).

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Revelation was most likely about the time in which it was written. Even if it really is end-times prophecy, is there any reason to be concerned? Take a look at the New Testament's track record on the issue of prophecy in my post here: http://www.ex-christian.net/topic/63824-prophecies-for-jesus/#entry978595

In light of the broader picture of Christianity being a big, fat lie, I can say with 100% confidence that there is absolutely nothing to fear with regard to end-times prophecies. The only thing to fear is the deluded followers who take that crap seriously!

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When I was a kid, my mom had a book by Hal Lindsey called The Late Great Planet Earth, a runaway Xitian bestseller. It used Bible prophecy to predict that Armageddon would occur in 1982. 1982 came and went, and here we are. There's a good sociology study on this kind of thing, a book called "When Prophecy Fails", and the basic takeaway is that when predictions fail, the faithful rationalize an explanation and present a new date for the end times. There comes a point when they are so invested in it, having failed to plan for the future and having sold their assets, often to give to a church, that they can't handle the sense of failure to get out. So they keep believing...

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