I blog on a pretty prominent political website. At times some Evangelical “Fundamentalists” there push their views of Biblical prophesy (which often conflict, btw). The big “prophesy fad” now is this Erdogan of Turkey guy being the Antichrist. I was called “brain dead” for expressing my doubts (lol).
They “proved” Erdogan’s the Antichrist with elaborate charts, graphs, biblical quotes, timelines, etc to which I answered that the same thing’s been done over and over throughout history (The Late Great Planet Earth in modern times, for example), and they all fell through–that the Bible is meant to be read in order to learn to know and love God. not as a horoscope that predicts “with certainty” future events and the End Times (this is when I was called brain dead) and that it makes Christianity look childish. It’s an extension of the “Health and Wealth” mindset, imo.
My question I guess is this–Anyone know of a credible refutation of this Erdogan stuff/fad, and what’s the Catholic position on biblical prophesy in general (New and Old Testaments) being used to predict the End Times. Some of Christ’s own words seem to warn against it, e.g.-“Let today’s troubles be enough for the day” and that every day should be looked on as the last.
I can handle this fairly well now, but many people read the posts on this site and I want to be as well armed as possible when it comes up again. Any help would be appreciated.
People often have silly beliefs that they will cling to regardless of evidence to the contrary.
Cognitive dissonance is a way of life for some.
“It is impossible to reason a person out of beliefs they weren’t reasoned in to.”
Perhaps you could explain to them that it would be equally feasible to produce charts that show that Mickey Mouse is the antichrist.
Why Erdogan cannot be the antichrist:
-he’s not from a Jewish family
-he’s too old (antichrist must start his “ministry” at 28 years of age)
-he has not been wounded in the head
-he is nowhere near talented enough
-he is not gay
-he does not worship a “god of forces”
Their claims - all of them - are based on the solid rock of personal opinion. A collection of them, actually. So, by what authority are those opinions defined are truthful or accurate? You might ask them why they devote their very lives, all of their attention and life force, on fascination, if not obsesseion with the supposed antichrist. Ask them why they do not devote so much energy on the Christ who saves. Rather than being participants in salvation, they are spectators of doom.
I agree with this for the most part, but I do think there are some who are getting it right and able to recognize this stuff for what it is, in correlation with scripture too.
One is Irwin Baxter, I believe he is out of Texas, has a show on WHT every night called ‘End of the Age’, everytime I watch, I am amazed how current events and people fit into scriptures, one was the locusts with faces of men, (horses), and teeth of iron…if someone in biblical times was to see a modern attack helicopter, that is likely how they would describe it in words.
I do not agree with everything Baxter says, but overall, I think he has it right.
There’s copies of Miller’s charts floating around on the Internet, along with the charts that dictated that 1912, 1997, 2000, 2011, and 2012 would be the end. All of them used the Bible to prophecy a specific date.
As for people believing whatever they want: A political forum I used to frequent had a poster who had legally changed his name to David Ben-Ariel (literally, David, Son of Jerusalem, as Ariel was used by at least one of the prophets to refer to Jerusalem). This poster was (is) a so-called Christian Zionist - a person who wants to accelerate the end times by destroying the mosque on the Temple Mount and replacing it with the 3rd Jewish Temple. He claimed that the British and Americans decended from the British are decended from the 10 lost tribes of Israel and must reclaim their Israelite blood. Anyway, he believed that “the whore Babylon” is the European Union, etc., etc. And he sells books about this stuff.
Regardless, though, remember what John says in his second letter: Anyone who denies Jesus is the anti-Christ.
As for the end of the world? Well… we need to stay awake and be ready. The Bridegroom could return tonight, tomorrow night, next week, next month, next year, 10 years from now, 100 years from now, or 1000 years from now. We might live to see His return or He could summon us and call us to account at any time before His return. Our job is not to worry about when the end will happen - it is to remain faithful stewards until the end comes.
And don’t worry about people who wish to peddle their arguments about who the antiChrist is or when the end of the world will happen - there can be no reasoning with a person who refuses to engage in reasonable discussion. The best thing you can do is simply ignore their posts and put them on “ignore”.
“Perhaps you could explain to them that it would be equally feasible to produce charts that show that Mickey Mouse is the antichrist.”
I did say pretty much that, but I used my mailman as the example (he is kind of a nasty guy…and his name’s Damien).
I also said that the Antichrist will lead more of a devastating spiritual cataclysm that the world runs after, rather than be merely a geopolitical regional bad guy (who looks like a central casting mobster and who 90% of people have never heard of) who somehow precipitates a nuclear war–that this is more about our souls than building backyard fallout shelters. This seems to be lost on them.
What I find fascinating also is that some Evangelicals on the site have bought into the Israel worship fad–that Israel (the UN created nation state) is “God’s favorite” according to “prophesy” and will bring about the 2nd Coming and can do no wrong, while the Edrogan as Antichrist acolytes believe that Israel will be “chastised”. The first pretty much negate everything Christ did in making all men equally children of God and sounding like the Pharisees who crucified Him, while the latter sound like crypto clansmen–same scriptures, opposite results–and THIS is one of the many reasons I’m a Catholic.
The Church should clearly state its point of view on the use and interpretation of biblical prophesy, imo. Some Catholics buy into these passing End Times fads/frenzies too.