Welcome to our weekly Q & A. This is the part of the show where we dig into the mailbag and answer questions from our viewers at home.
I’m thinking of my local cable access crochet show: Hook, Line, and Thinker. It’s my show where I discuss various theological issues while crocheting interesting toques.
THIS is the Cripplegate, so it’s our first ever (and possibly last, depending on how this goes) “Q & Eh?”
This is where readers ask the Canadian contributor questions (via FaceBook) and he answers them. The following four questions were selected based on the number of positive votes they received. Seeing that I forgot to limit the contest to one question per person, I’ll tackle the four winners. Also, knowing that many people were hoping for a silly answer to these (mostly) silly questions, I’ll provide a silly answer first and then a more serious answer after that. Let’s get started.
1. From Larry Bouligny (pastor of Heritage Valley Bible Church in Filmore, CA):
Can you explain how the proliferation of cat videos online relates to the antichrist?
Sure Larry! I’d be glad to answer that question.
Rev. 13:1 records a beast coming out of the sea. Rev. 13:2 says “the beast that I saw was like a leopard“, except that it had large feet and a mouth like a lion. Leopards and lions are both jungle cats. Rev. 13:2 also says that the Dragon gave the beast “his power and his throne and great authority.” Rev. 13:4 says that the people who worshiped the dragon also worshiped the beast.
Now who’s the Dragon? Obviously Satan.
Now who’s large jungle cat that comes out of the sea? The AntiChrist.
So consider what will happen when there are millions of cat videos on the internet and then a large, super-powered jungle cat emerges from the sea?
Everyone who is zombified from watching cat videos will see this large jungle cat coming out of the sea (like Aquaman) and videos of it will get more views than Gangnam Style.
The world is totally primed for a giant jungle cat to come from the sea. The proliferation of cat videos online are directly setting the stage for the arrival of the antichrist jungle cat.
Let me take a more serious stab at the underlying issue, which is strangely close to the silly answer.
The underlying issue with cat videos is how a populace that spends far too much time being entertained is unwillingly setting the stage for the end times.
What do you get when you have a whole world that is mostly filled with people who spend their time watching videos on Youtube, arguing on Facebook, and generally turning their brains into a smooth roux?
You get a world where false signs and wonders convince the masses (Matt. 24:24; 2 Thess. 2:9; Rev. 13:13-14).
You get a world where the antichrist can roll into town and take the reigns of government with words smoother than a light Béchamel sauce (Dan. 11:21).
You also get a world where Rev. 13:5-10 can occur with ease.
What I mean by the third point is that when the minds of the masses are turned to Velouté sauce by the constant barrage of violent and bloody news, the violent and bloody realities of life no longer seem like realities. We see this already playing out with the Planned Parenthood scandal: the facts aren’t in question. The evidence is public and widely available, but almost nobody cares. The videos are there to watch with just one click on a link. The pictures are there to see with just one click on a link.
Even though the absolutely horrifying slaughter of our unborn is a matter of widely available public record, most people aren’t even really concerned. In fact, many people are unaware of the tsunami of facts and evidence out there because they’re too busy posting selfies online, self-educating about gluten, or watching cat videos.
That’s a world where the AntiChrist will roll in, set up shop, and get away with horrific evil. It has happened before (i.e. in Germany, which is well documented in this book and this book and this book), but it will happen again on a global scale. It will be far easier when the minds of the masses are turned to a light Espagnole sauce.
2. From Gene Clyatt (pastor of Parkside Baptist Church in Superior, MT):
Why will there be sacrifices during the millennium?
Gene, you’re trying to destroy me.
The “sacrifices” are an opaque metaphor that clearly means “Jesus”.
I’ll punt and say that greater men than I have already offered reasonable answers to that question:
Fred Butler says that the sacrifices are non-efficacious; part of religious worship but not a wholesale reinstatement of the sacrificial system that was in effect under the Old Covenant. Fred makes a solid argument that when a person reads Ezekiel 40-48 closely, it doesn’t say what many critics suggest it does.
Thomas Ice says that the sacrifices could be either for the cleansing of the temple or a memorial. He doesn’t land on either side, though he seems to lean toward the “cleansing” position (which would be similar to Fred Butler’s position).
I’ll gladly let those two help me out.
3. Also from Gene Clyatt:
What purpose did mosquitoes serve before the Fall?
Okay. Supralapsarian biology. My specialty!
Gen 9:4 says that people were forbidden to eat meat, let alone blood, before the flood. Mosquitoes ate blood.
Clearly they’re demons.
This question comes up in more serious version when we have animals that look distinctly predatorial in nature (i.e. a spider).
It’s known as the “predator/prey problem” in Creation Science circles.
Consider the following: there is a parasite called the Cymothoa exigua. It gets into the mouths of fish, cuts off the blood supply to its tongue, and replaces its tongue with itself (leaching blood from the fish). It doesn’t hurt the fish in any other way, but it is quite a horrific sight (WARNING: SOME THINGS CANNOT BE UNSEEN) and will fuel many a nightmare.
What possible purpose did animals like that have before the fall?
Obviously, I don’t have a clue what purpose mosquitoes, or spiders, or Cymothoa exigua had before the fall.
Also, I also don’t have a clue what any of those creatures were like before the fall, and that’s where this whole question breaks down for a simple reason:
Nobody really knows the full extent of the effects of the fall or how much things changed.
We do know a few things:
We do know that at least some animals changes physically, in some ways, in the past (Gen. 3:14-15)
We do know that other (possibly physical & non-physical) changes happened to the animals (Gen 9:2).
We do know that there were physical & non-physical changes in humans (Gen 3:16).
We do know that there were physical changes in nature (Gen 3:18-19) and nature is painfully distorted from what it once was (Rom. 8:20-21)
We do know that all animals were vegetarian before the fall (Gen. 1:29-30).
Admittedly, those limited facts leave a whole lot of room for making educated guesses.
The even bigger problem is that we cannot look back, before the fall, and see just how much things have changed. The questions are numerous:
Did the post-fall change from vegetarianism come with physical changes? Were they rapid? How extensive were they? Were they limited to specific animals? Were they limited to specific parts of the body? What changes were needed on a microbial/bacterial level to facilitate those changes? What was the secondary fallout from all the previously occurring changes (with regard to adaptation) over the millennia?
Did venom glands produce venom before the fall? Maybe. Maybe not. Maybe it wasn’t venom at all. What’s the difference between venom and whatever the non-venom substance was before the fall? How much systemic change in organisms was required? What was the secondary fallout from all the previously occurring changes (with regard to adaptation) over the millennia?
Did viruses exist before the fall? If not what were they? How did they become viruses? What was the secondary fallout from all the previously occurring changes (with regard to adaptation) over the millennia?
All these questions, and millions more, lie behind the veil of understanding that we simply cannot remove. Nobody can go back prior to the fall and find out. We can take educated guesses, but that’s all they are. Guesses.
Creation Ministries International has a whole section devoted to offering educated guesses on this and other related issues.
The Institute for Creation Research has a specific article on mosquitoes too.
Still, the pre-fall world is veiled in mystery that none of us can reveal.
4. Also from Gene Clyatt:
Melchizedek: Preincarnate appearance of Christ or just a dude lost to history?
Gene, it seems like you are out to get me in trouble.
I’ll let the Rev. Dr. Al Mohler answer this one. He says, and I quote:
As if I’m getting into that bag of snakes.
Well, I’ll offer one thought. I’d suggest that in the Old Testament when Jesus appeared as a theophany, he was the Angel of the Lord. I’ve written on this elsewhere. I’d say that Jesus wasn’t ruling Salem (Gen. 14:18) around the same time he was also appearing as a theophany to Abraham and his household (Gen. 16:7-11; 18:1, 18:17-21, etc.). That doesn’t compute to me.
It’s not a hill I’m willing to die on.
Actually, it’s not even a hill I’m willing to plant a small rhododendron bush on.
Maybe a dandelion of conviction.
So there we go.
Our first ever Q & Eh? is done, with hopefully minimal damage and accusations of heresy.
Sadly, I’m currently going insane with a whole load of things on my plate and may not be able to come back to answer questions in the comments.
I’ll try, but I make no guarantees.