Filed Under (Uncategorized) by Paul on 17-09-2011
Folks, you just have to love Duncan McKenzie who plows the internet shamelessly peddling his books on the unsuspecting and ignorant. However, that isn’t the real issue with Mr. McKenzie. The real issue Mr. McKenzie has is as Gary DeMar aptly described another member of their community he is a “one trick” pony. Mr. McKenzie has never taken the time to properly exegete those passages which describe explicitly the hope of Christianity yet still freely offers up his views on eschatology. In so doing he attacks the views of men well rounded in not only exegesis, but the theological implications of the rendering of that exegesis. Mr. McKenzie is torn between two versions of a Christian view redefined along pagan lines as he self attests below,
I see a lot of people get into very intense debates on the nature of the resurrection. I tend to stay out of these debates for the simple reason that I am not sure. I tend to lean toward the IBD concept of the resurrection, although I also see corporate aspects taught as well. While I am not sure on the exact nature of the resurrection, I feel much more sure on the timing of the resurrection.
The “IBD” concept is transmigration of the soul also known as reincarnation. The “corporate” aspect is disembodied bliss. Dr. Roger Olson Professor of Theology at Baylor’s seminary has documented both views are derived from pagan origins and typically advocated by lay people unskilled in the basics of Biblical matters which results in the adoption of pagan views. Dr. Olson points out of guys like Mr. McKenzie, “Christians have always believed (except where they forget their common faith) that the body participates in redemption and future eternal life.” (The Mosaic of Christian Belief, Roger E. Olson, IVP, pg 309)
Mr. McKenzie isn’t sure what Paul meant when he clearly explained, “the Lord Jesus Christ,…will transform our lowly body to be like his glorious body” Phil 3:20, 21, and therefore leans between two views which originate from paganism yet suggests scholars like Dr. Kenneth Gentry and Dr. Keith Mathison are confused. What’s surprising is that after making an admission like that above the untutored and unskilled Mr. McKenzie has the gall to cast aspersions against the work of scholars. Mr. McKenzie who doesn’t have the ability to exegetically determine what the promise of resurrection entails has the audacity to complain,
Gentry is saying that Paul is talking about a future final advent in 2 Thessalonians 1:7-10, but a mere three verses later switches to the AD 70 coming in 2 Thessalonians 2:1! Gentry is forced into this far-fetched position because 2 Thessalonians 1:7-10 is talking about the judgment (which Gentry says is still future) while 2:1 is talking about the AD 70 gathering of God’s people (cf. Matthew 24:29-34, which Gentry correctly believes is AD 70). http://forums.carm.org/vbb/showthread.php?68579-Shamrock185-Makes-a-Good-Point&p=2068893&viewfull=1#post2068893
Folks, I think this is the epitome of what Dr. Roger Olson explains about those who advocate a paganized version of a Christian claim. Clearly McKenzie is one of those “untutored lay” people “biblically semi-literate”. Mr. Mckenzie eschews grammatical/historical principles of interpretation turning the Bible in to his own private playground. Demonstrating just how untutored he is Mr. McKenzie will quote G.K.Beale but fail to explain to his readers Dr. Beale’s assessment of Mr. Mckenzie’s redefinition of that concept he is “torn” over. Dr. Beale explains,
…some years ago I was invited to a meeting of theologians in order to discuss a teaching that was spreading (and continues to spread) among a number of churches, namely, that there will not be a final, general bodily resurrection of Christians at the end of the age and that Christ’s second coming and the resurrection of saints already happened in some figurative and invisible manner in A.D. 70. It was the same false teaching as was propounded in Corinth, Ephesus and elsewhere in the first century. (1-2 Thessalonians, G.K. Beale, IVP, pg 201, 202)
In the case above wherein Mr. McKenzie asserts Dr. Gentry’s position is “far-fetched” rather than dealing with Dr. Gentry’s argument Mr. McKenzie bases his claim on the locale of concepts although Paul clearly transitions in the text which separates the two passages. Mr. McKenzie asserts his point without dealing with the argument of Dr. Gentry which is based on four explicit points. Why, it is likely because if Mr. McKenzie actually dealt with the argument he would have to employ skills he frankly doesn’t have.
Mr. McKenzie won’t be exactly honest about the position of the authors he quotes yet implies Dr. Gentry isn’t being honest. Mr. McKenzie explained,
Gentry maintains that the first coming (2 Thess. 1:7-10) is a reference to the future Second Advent and the next (2 Thess. 2:1) is to an AD 70 metaphorical coming. It makes little sense that Paul is talking about two different comings in the same breath. Note the gathering in 2 Thessalonians 2:1; it is speaking of the same event as the rapture of 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18 (although Gentry would say the rapture is the end of time, but the gathering is AD 70. I am reminded of the famous Ronald Regan line “Well, there you go again”). If Paul is talking about two different gatherings/raptures at two different comings he did not make himself clear. (See volume I, pages 371-384. for my discussion of the gathering/rapture.) The confusion of the supposed two different comings is multiplied by the fact that partial preterists do not always agree as to which refers to the AD 70 coming and which refers to a supposed future Second Advent.
Allow me to point out Mr. McKenize begs the question never explaining why the event’s Dr. Gentry understands as unrelated are related. Mr. McKenzie, the untutored lay person who is incapable of providing exegesis of the text to determine what the promise of resurrection entails explains Dr. Gentry’s argument kindles thoughts of Ronald Regan’s famous line, “Well, there you go again” issued when he caught Jimmy Carter misrepresenting the facts. Yet, Mr. McKenzie never addresses Dr. Gentry’s exegesis of the text or his argument. Hey, it’s ok to disagree but don’t imply the man is lying when you don’t have the ability to explain why his argument is wrong. Frankly, in this case Mr. McKenzie is playing the role of Mr. Carter.
Mr. McKenzie inexplicably writes, “If Paul is talking about two different gatherings/raptures at two different comings he did not make himself clear”, yet never offers any support from his comment suggesting “gathering” means “rapture”. Mr. McKenzie, who admittedly doesn’t understand what resurrection entails seemingly builds his entire argument on the assumption “gathering” equates to “rapture”, simply amazing. Gee, I wonder if those in Hebrews 10:25 were neglecting to “rapture” together. Perhaps this argument is just too nuanced for Mr. McKenzie.
Furthermore, Mr. McKenzie never explains why 1 Thessalonians 4:15-18 should be understood as the event explained as the Day of the Lord in 2 Thessalonians 2:1. 1 Thessalonians 4:15-18 is without question, (unless you hold a Gnostic-like view of reality), dealing with dead people coming back to life and those living transformed, while that concept is completely missing in 2 Thessalonians 2. However, what is dealt with in 2 Thessalonians 2 is a judgment, which just happens to be missing in 1 Thessalonians 4:15-18. Odd, McKenzie would find two entirely different subject matters as unclear evidence that the text is addressing two different events. Like I said, duplicitous isn’t the only word that starts with “D”.
Oh yeah, I forgot the term “gather” which McKenzie implies means “rapture”, (“there you go again”), is found in both passages. I guess the concept of “meeting” necessarily means wherever that term is found it is dealing with the second appearance of Jesus Christ. “Meet” now means bring back to life a formerly dead body or the transformation of a living mortal body to immortal, go figure. The fact is, Mr. McKenzie demonstrates for all to see his “unsophisticated” manner in dealing with the inspired text.
However, I think it is ironic that Mr. McKenzie would claim, “I feel much more sure on the timing of the resurrection.” McKenzie’s grounds? Oh yeah, gather i.e. “meet” means “rapture” although he has provided no supporting evidence. I just have to wonder if that wasn’t what Hymaneus and Philtus claimed as well. N.T. Wright who unlike Mr. McKenzie is a tutored scholar has this to say about Paul’s opponents noted in 1 Corinthians 15,
“Even if they believed, like the two teachers mentioned in 2 Timothy 2.17-18, that ‘the resurrection’ as a whole had already occurred, in other words, that ‘the resurrection’ referred to some kind of spiritual experience or event, they would still be denying that there would be a bodily resurrection. (The proto-gnostic belief is thus shown up already as what it really was and is, namely a form of paganism rather than from Judaism.) (Resurrection of the Son of God, N.T. Wright, Fortress Press, pg 316)
Based on what Dr. Olson explains, Mr. McKenzie is an “unsophisticated and biblically semiliterate lay” person who has left, that is if he ever was a part of, the common faith because based on his own admission he doesn’t have the capability to exegete the text and understand why, “biblical scholars and theologians have emphasized the bodily resurrection as the blessed hope of believers in Christ.” Perhaps if McKenzie wasn’t such a one trick pony he would understand the basis for views of men like Dr. Gentry and Dr. Mathison. However, it is likely that will never happen as it would no doubt hurt his book sales.