Lake of fire is real! : A response to Chuck Crisco
I have been following a guy named Chuck Crisco for some time at a distance. He seems to have a lot of the same mutual friends and he says a lot of the right things for revival. He does come across as a hyper grace guy and that leads to this article about the lake of fire.
In his article What is the Lake of Fire?, he opened questioned some ideology about people going to torment for eternity. This is becoming a popular thing about pastors today. More and more, I am seeing people opening saying they do not believe in hell, anymore. It is not just Carlson Pearson these days.
I am not quite sure of his total theology. He does use the word “optimistic” a lot and that normally lead into a lengthy discussion about eschatology. For some reason, people who hold to amillenial view believe that those believe in the Blessed Hope (Pre-trib rapture) do not have an optimistic view of humanity.
I am all for the preaching of grace as long it remains within its’ biblical banks. If you let it flood the area (over emphasis), what was meant to grow the oaks of righteousness will ultimately destroy everything in its’ path.
Chuck Crisco : lake of fire was Jerusalem fall!
This is honestly something I have not heard before so I want to read with an open heart to at least try and understand what Chuck is trying to say. I am not one of these guys that thinks you have to agree with me to be right. I believe we all see and know in part.
He assumes that much of the writings concerned futuristic events is what we call apocalyptic language. This means it over emphasized to purposeful draw a response to our hearts. This is the other extreme of people that think everything that should be taken literal. Most of us sit somewhere in the middle.
For example, I hold that most of the eschatological passages should be taken as is but I hold Songs of Songs is prophetic and full of types and shadows. I hold to what is known as the bridal paradigm and to the Blessed Hope. I believe the same is true for most believers: they hold some things to be literal and some thing to be prophetic.
It seems that a lot of Crisco ideology about what is happening here is because of the battle of Armageddon. He sees that as the fall of Jerusalem in 70 AD.
He goes to reason that the lake of fire reference was a reminder to what happened to Sodom and Gomorrah.
This is using a lot of contemporary elements and assuming they do not carry prophetic fulfillment. The Old Testament is full of examples of when God used events happening currently to give a promise for a future time. God still speaks through prophets like this today.
The issue here is God normally release two, three or even more fulfillment of a passage. We can look at Joel 2:28 for example. It was fulfilled in the time of Joel, fulfilled in Acts 2, and has multiple fulfillment through history like the Moroviah revival (1727) and Azusa Street (1906).
My problem with the “Everything happened in 70”
This is a popular thinking that I am hearing more and more of in recent times. I have many friends that hold to this view or to part of it. Bill Johnson of Bethel Church seems to hold to this position now. I get the reason why people want to hold to this view. It takes away all guilt and responsibility of the believer to get the task of world evangelization finished.
The fall of Jerusalem might have been a fulfillment of some prophetic passage but it was not the fulfillment of them. There is many shadows of things to come. The example of Joel 2 is an example of that. Any believer would never say the Holy Spirit would only come in power for those 120 people.
The other problem I have with everything is over in 70 AD is this is the foundation for people who run around and mock Pentecostals claim all prophecies ended, all miracles stopped, all tongues ceased and all demons can’t be casted out. When is their magical date? Yep, it is 70 AD and they use the fall of Jerusalem as their sign from heaven!
The fact of the matter is that the fall was important and it does have value in biblical prophecy but it is not the only time that is important. An example of this is the forming of the nation of Israel has prophetic importance as well. That happened in my grandparent’s lifetime.
What does Azusa Report believe about it?
We hold to a revival focused Pentecostal view of the last things or eschatology. While we generally reject most “doom and gloom” versions of the things to come, we hold the great end time harvest will ultimately be capped off with the Blessed Hope or the catching up of the saints.
The reason for this so that a second wave of revival can break forth among the Jewish people and the epic center of it all will be Jerusalem with thousands gathering to worship at Mount Zion in the spirit of the Tabernacle of David. This revival will last roughly three years.
The following time will be a time of testing among the Jewish people and it will end with the Lord Himself returning with the saints to rule and to reign in the Second Coming.
The important thing that we have before us is “when” the catching up will happen. It is more important to consider the cause of Christ and what is holding the Blessed Hope up.
Matthew 24:14 tells us the following, “And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come.” This has not happened to date. As soon as this happen, we have the promise of the Lord that the end will come.
The issue here is actually three different things: the gospel of the Kingdom is not the same as the gospel of salvation, it must be preached to all people groups, and it must go forth in all lands. None of these happened as of this writing. There is still unreached people groups on the globe today.
The focus of the believer should not be trying to figure out when this or that happens but preaching the gospel of Jesus as Savior, Lord, King and Baptizer!
Oh yea, people who die rejecting the gospel will burn in hell forever. Hell and those who choose to reject the gospel will be thrown into lake of fire ultimately.