Friday, April 9, 2010

Aesop on Bible Prophecy

Nathan JonesPDFBy Nathan Jones

"I was wondering is Nathan Jones still on this planet? Stop it with this rapture nonsense and wake up!"

As Web Minister for Lamb & Lion Ministries, I get to reach out through the Internet and converse with people all over the world. What a great opportunity to share with them the saving news of Jesus Christ and the hope filled message of His soon return!

Sometimes the people aren't too receptive to the message, though, and share back in emphatic statements questioning my state of mind, such as the email excerpt above. I've come to realize there will always be people who disagree with your views on anything, much less Bible prophecy.

Bible prophecy is like having a thousand piece puzzle but some of the pieces are missing. We are left not quite 100% sure of all the details because the events are future and haven't happened yet.

We Christians can share in the view that we are looking forward to a future with Christ, but there is always going to be some disagreement among the non-essential doctrines such as are related to the end times. Some handle that well, and some do not.

At times when people can be kind of rude and a little hard on the Beav, and seek some comfort in Aesop's fable called "The Man, the Boy and the Donkey."


Aesop's Donkey

The fable tells of a boy and an old man who are taking their donkey to sell at the market. As they are walking along besides the donkey they pass by a crowd and hear some people whispering to each other saying, "Those two guys are so stupid since they could be riding their donkey." Well, the old man and the young boy agree that the people are right and so they climb up on the donkey's back.

As they move along, the boy and old man pass by another group and hear somebody exclaiming, "That poor donkey is carrying all that weight. That's a clear case of animal abuse. Let's call PETA." And so, the boy gets off leaving the old man riding the donkey.

As they continue to walk on they hear some more passerby's saying to each other, "That selfish old man, making that poor little kid walk." Feeling ashamed, the old man switches with the young boy and begins walking.

They go further on and next hear a woman chide, "That kid is so selfish to make that poor old man walk."

Well, the predicament just plain dumbfounds the old man and young boy. They can only look at each other in dismay and sigh.

After awhile of just standing there not knowing what to do, the two of them both have an "a-ha!" moment. They find some sticks and make a sort of gurney. They place the donkey on the gurney and start carrying the donkey to market.

Now, if the donkey was Balaam's donkey it would have been saying, "Suckers, this is great!" But, they were walking along a ravine and donkeys are heavy and the boy stumbled a lot. Spilling over, the donkey goes over the side and drops down into the ravine and dies, leaving them with nothing to sell.

The moral of Aesop's story is — you can't please everybody.

With Bible prophecy, everyone tends to color their interpretation of events the way they'd like them to turn out. We all agree with how it ends — Jesus wins! But, the stepping stones to the conclusion are arranged differently. Take the Tribulation for instance. Some Christians just discount the notion of a literal Tribulation altogether, some really want to participate in the horrors of the Tribulation to prove their mettle to God, while others such as myself are more than ready to go to Heaven in the Rapture beforehand. We can't all be right.

And so, while we may not always agree on interpretations of end time events, we still must stay true to a sound study of Scripture in light of who the God of the Bible is. Anything beyond those bounds, well, we know why they get those funny looks.

Anything within those bounds, we will all just have to wait for God to fill in the puzzle pieces as events occur. God makes us do this so that we continue to dive into His Word and study, resulting in a closer relationship with our Savior.

Remember, draw your guns only for the essential doctrines, and do so always in edifying speech and brotherly love.

"By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another." - John 13:35

40 comments:

hartdawg said...

truth be told, i have more of a problem with a pan (no)position than a post(wrong)position.(kidding about the wrong) the pan position sadly is the vast majority. that position basically gives the message that prophecy (or the word) is not important.

hartdawg said...

some would interpret this article and say "thats why you shouldnt teach prophecy, you`ll offend people" so mitchell, while i disagree with your post-trib position that dont make you (or me)any less of a brother or affect (our)standing with christ. at least you care enough to search scripture and defend your position. (tho its a little too lengthy;))

Billy said...

My favorite part of the article was "Spilling over, the donkey goes over the side and drops down into the ravine and dies"

I'm hoping that is what happens in November :)

son of thunder said...

I was just wondering why Nathan put that picture of a Democrat on the blog.

Billy said...

Of course in my comment I was referring to the November election and a particular POLITICAL PARTY, not an individual so no one misunderstands.

(I know Thunder got it but don't want anyone to get the wrong idea)

hartdawg said...

NOW I GET IT BILLY! haha i didnt get it at first. i totally agree.

DrNofog said...

Nathan said...
"Bible prophecy is like having a thousand piece puzzle but some of the pieces are missing."

I think a better analogy would be that there are not pieces missing, as that sounds like some of the Word is missing, but rather the picture on the cover is missing, so we're guessing and turning pieces every which way to see where they fit.
Since Daniel's key was given about 200yrs ago we've seen pieces of the map of Israel and Russia take shape and since Bill Salus found the Psalm 83 pieces, other pieces are falling into place now too!
Kinda looks like it might be a map of the Middle East with a picture of a reigning Messiah superimposed on it...

son of thunder said...
"I was just wondering why Nathan put that picture of a Democrat on the blog."
Yeah Billy, thunder ...I know I've seen that congress-critter in the capital before but I think it was from the Pelosi end of it...
;-D

Anonymous said...

Good post Nathan! And the comments are great...I got a great chuckle out of it :)

~R (aka Rachel)

Expected Imminently said...

DRNOFOG! there y'ar, where have you been, we missed you!

Please excuse my Britishness from showing; but the Psalm 83 stuff was being discussed in the U.K.several years before Bill mentions it (I did tell him this). Our very own Tony Pearce published it first in his magazine "Light for the Last Days". Before he published, he put it in a personal letter to me (and others I should think) for appraisal. Tony first became aware when he noticed the names of the nations in Psalm 83 were different to those stated in Ezek.38/9.
His letter to me came after I had written to him my own observations on Ezek.38 regarding 'betach' not meaning 'peace'.

Bragging? yea, a bit, but more to say that The Holy Spirit has been teaching this for quite a while now to different people. Probably to men like Tony and Bill in other countries as well. I find this exciting as the end times progress.
Toot, toot!
E.I.

Expected Imminently said...

Nathan and all,
I have been TOLD that my granddaughter is to be dedicated in June at the apostate Robinswood church. My d.in law said I can go if I like! Said I would have to pray about it and would let her know.

It’s upset my mum and my hubby who don’t want to go to this irreverent, religious social club. So if I don’t go, they won’t go either for their own reasons and to back me.

So – I have asked the Lord the same question as Naaman did after dunking seven times in Jordan and getting saved. He asked if he could be excused from going into the Baal Temple during his work for the king, and God said it was ok! When I was nursing, I had to collect a patient (former R.C. priest) from ‘Mass’, so I went with the same prayer and just sat praying inwardly.

So that is where I am and also considering ‘living at peace’ with my family. We don’t want to be ungracious and cause further family friction as we attended the other six dedications so would go for the sake of the baby. As I made celebration cakes for the others, I have now made this one and am ‘feeding’ it with Brandy ready to decorate.

Mum and hubby are worried for me (health) because not only will this false shepherd be taking the service, he is also going to be at the party afterward! (Others as well I expect, one of whom I introduced to Jesus, and now avoids me). I have told them it doesn’t faze me one little bit – and it doesn’t, not at all, as long as I can feel sure it is ok with The Lord. I would take my Bible with me in case anything relevant was said, and not join in with the singing if the words are wrong (Hillsong).

My only concern is talking to them sensibly as I am very poor when it comes to a lot of people, and I don’t like feeling enclosed either as I get light-headed and shaky, and my breathing becomes shallow and I gulp for air a lot. I have nothing planned to say to them, but if The Lord gave me something, I WOULD say it – at least I usually do.

I would really appreciate your view, and most of all prayer to do the right thing by The Lord.
Thank you.
E.I.

DrNofog said...

EI, You have nothing to fear!
God has given you an immeasurable grace that you display here, and that which you have yet to tap into.
All of Jericho had 40 full years of intel to weigh and choose up sides. Only Rahab made that serious choice!
And only Rahab is given fame as recorded as the 1st Gentile progenitor of our Messiah.
"...as I get light-headed and shaky,..."
Pshaww! You have Abraham and Rahab inside you!
You have nothing to fear as you walk amongst them, the Holy Spirit will guard and guide your tongue.

PS. Yer allowed to "toot" if you have the stuff in your corner..., Blessings to Bill Salus & the others that you mentioned who were able to pierce that veil.

Expected Imminently said...

DrNofog
I'll get the fun over with first!

"Pshaww! You have Abraham and Rahab inside you!" I wondered where my spare tyre had come from :D

Doc, it is rare for me to have a spiritual quiver - I am such a wary old bird; but your post shot straight into my spirit from Jesus. 'Grace' - makes perfect sense. That was beautiful! (teary sniffle) big hug.
E.I.

Nathan Jones said...

E.I., if I was in your position I'd go to the dedication and show my support for my family. My family would already know my disdain for their church's false teachings, but they'd know I firmly stand behind them in my love and support of who my children and grandchildren are.

There are better times and places to do battle, times that wouldn't divide a family beyond reconciliation. Skipping out on a wedding, funeral or anything grandchild related in order to make a point always backfires, damaging a loving relationship to the point that they will no longer be receptive to our concerns.

son of thunder said...

And it would make it tough to see those grandchildren again.

DrNofog said...

EI.
I hope that is just the strange Brit misspelling of "tire", otherwise I'm left to speculate where Sidon has settled in...
[Shudder!...]

Billy said...

Great news for California - the gay rights sickos have failed to get a "repeal prop. 8" proposition on the ballot in 2010.

So for at least 2 years we won't have to fight the gays at the ballot box.

Now the only worry is whether or not our courts will overturn the vote of the people.

son of thunder said...

Yeah, the Brits have trouble spelling. Tire with a "Y". Connection with an "X". They just don't know no good English :-)

(Just kidding, EI!)

That's good news there, Billy. Seems like someone on the Left coast still has some morals. Of course, the original Mr. Sulu from Star Trek (George Takei) will be ticked.

DrNofog said...

"They just don't know no good English :-)"
thunder... you rock!

It's a good thing that EI has a good "rockin'" heart too, otherwise she'd be draggin' yer tush up to the curb too... citizen's arrest... defaiming da kink's englis!!!

Expected Imminently said...

Now listen ere ya colonial nitwits.

To ‘tire’ is what one does at the end of a fractious post Zzzzzz.

A ‘tyre’ is what’s shoved into each corner of a vehicle.

A ‘spare tyre’ is sited in the boot of said vehicle or, as in my case, an obstinate circle of fat lodged around me middle.

Tyre (of Sidon) is foreign; it ain’t even English – SEE?

AND what, may one enquire, is a ‘TUSH’; how would I ‘pull it over a curb’ and what exactly would I be curbing – your cheek perhaps – hmm?

P.S.
(Nudge)Ooo you are awful, but I do like you. :D

E.I.

Nathan Jones said...

New rule for the blog... if you're going to speak in tongues you need an interpreter.

Is there such thing as a British English to American English interpreter? Better check Google Translate. ;)

Anonymous said...

What does the donkey symbolize? Are you the young boy? Is Dr. Reagan the Old Man?

Take care,
Jill

son of thunder said...

A ‘spare tyre’ is sited in the boot of said vehicle... What does footwear have to do with a car?

When you all watch American movies in England, are they subtitled or dubbed?

Pip, pip, cheerio, harumph, harumph....

(I know you Brits call the trunk of a car a "boot" for some odd reason. Just messin' wit' ya, m'lady.)

Expected Imminently said...

AND, to boot me dear, I just wonder what an elephant has to do with a car?
EI
x

DrNofog said...

Elephants have trunks because they can't carry suitcases...
;-D

Anonymous said...

And they can make trunk calls.

rg

Expected Imminently said...

I suppose Elephants prefer trunks to Y fronts and make trunk calls using their elephone!
EI

Billy said...

Y fronts? Mr. Humphries, are you free?

Expected Imminently said...

"I'm free" :)

Billy said...

EI

lol :)

Expected Imminently said...

Nathan and DrNofog

Bless you for your kind support. I have now confirmed to my hubby and mum that I will be going to the dedication.
Big hugs and thanks.
EI
x

Carol said...

These may be the craziest, funniest, most bizarre blog comments I've read so far! You did a fine job with your writing, Nathan, as always. This is a great series--glad I found it! Plus, you gave great advice about family matters, and solved a difficult problem by your wise words.

Nathan Jones said...

E.I., can you believe Chuck Missler is taking the credit for discovering Psalm 83? There was such a backlash to the claim in his new book that his people say on the second release they'll pass some credit Bill Salus' way. Tony Pearce may want to say something, too.

Anonymous said...

Is that true, Nathan? I'd always taken Chuck to be fair in attributing ideas to other people.

rg

Anonymous said...

"walk the donkey", "ride the donkey", "carry the donkey", "drop the donkey into a ravine and dies, leaving nothing to sell"...

Best thing that could have happened.

Keep your eyes on the Rider of riders.

Jesus found a young donkey and sat upon it, as it is written (John 12:14)

I saw heaven standing open and there before me was a white horse, whose rider is called Faithful and True. (Rev 19:11)

(Just messin' wit' ya' m'kind sir.)

Take care,
Jill

Anonymous said...

Any ideas about the moral of Aesops donkey fable using your "Biblical glasses"?...try them on...life is a lot more fun.

Take care,
Jill

(Sorry Nathan and Dr. Reagan...this is not personal attack...much love.)

Anonymous said...

Truth or Fable? "Biblical Glasses Ready"?

King of Babylon, King of Egypt and King of Sodom don't like you messin' with their captives.

The Lord of lords can call you, stategize and rescue(release) you from Babylon and Egypt. You can only be rescued from Sodom while you wait in agony because of the filthy lives of lawless men or taken captive by other kings...(notice not Kings of kings).

If you find yourself in Gommorah their ain't no rescue.

Abraham was called out of Babylon...aka...Ur...aka...Chaldean Territory.

It is all right their in the Scroll of scrolls.

(Don't be to hard on me it's late and this is my first Fable or Truth.)

Take Care,
Jill

Anonymous said...

Riddle

Who is the Thief of thieves?

Take Care,
Sampson

Expected Imminently said...

Nathan
Hmm! I can imagine Tony Pearce's facial expression on that news!

However I consider him a dignified and honourable a man, not one to brag or demand acknowledgment for what the Holy Spirit gave Him in the first place.

All glory and honour are best directed toward The Lord by all parties imo.
EI

Anonymous said...

No takers on the riddle?

My husband didn't get it either. Let me explain.

Seems like Sampson was as wise as a fox...remember all those foxes that show up in that story.

So he(Sampson) went out and caught three hundred foxes and tied them tail to tail in pairs. He then fastened a torch to every pair of tails...(Jdg 15:4)

Do you remember the riddle Sampson told?

He(Samspon) replied, "Out of the eater, something to eat; out of the strong, something sweet." For three days they could not give the answer. (Jdg 14:14)

Sounds like someone who was as clever as a fox and could tell a good riddle. Unfortunaly, he was really getting off track at this point of his life with the whole Delilah thing...oh, ha...he call her a heifer in Judges 14:18. So unfortunately, he tells a good riddle BUT it points directly to himself and to his own sins.

Riddles are best told if they point to the Lord of lords.

It seems like the best riddle...maybe puzzle...ever told are found in the Bible. Are not all those clues about Jesus first and second coming presented like a riddle/puzzle? Points to the Lord of lords...right!

So who is the Thief of thieves?

Tip...always point people to the King of kings? Is not that what the Holy Spirit does? Point to Jesus?

Take care,
Jill

Anonymous said...

Another tip

If you are a Christ follower you are like a thief to...do you know the scriptures to back these claims up?