Considering the Rapture and Millennium Through Catholic Eyes

I am always on the look out for materials that express how the early church (the first 3 centuries particularly) viewed certain doctrines that are the topic of debate in the modern church.  I found an article on the doctrines of the Rapture and the Millennium recently that I enjoyed.

Now this article is from a Catholic website.  I am not Catholic nor do I necessarily agree with all Catholic doctrines. I found the site when I performed a Google search to learn more about St. Augustine’s view of the Millennium The reason this site caught my attention is I think it is profitable at times to view some of our teachings (e.g. the Millennium and the Rapture) through non-Protestant Evangelical eyes.

I know that the attitude of many of my Protestant brethren toward Catholicism is a negative one and there may be a tendency to dismiss this article out-of-hand but, let’s face it, some of the greatest men of the faith have been Catholic. I have already mentioned St. Augustine. Surely you recognize the names of Thomas Aquinas, St. Athanasius, Brother Lawrence, Eusebius the Catholic historian, Jerome, and Justin Martyr, to name a few. So we can not reject wholesale any and all doctrines of the Catholic simply because they are held by Catholics. Catholics agree with Protestants on the nature of sin, original sin, salvation through Christ alone, the Trinity, the Virgin Birth, the sacrificial death of Christ, the Resurrection, the Second Coming, Heaven, and Hell among others. They are not wrong about everything any more than Baptists are wrong about everything—though both are wrong about some things, in my humble opinion. 🙂

I respect the Catholic church’s view on various topics because of the age of the Catholic church and studying the teachings of ancient Catholics like Augustine can teach us the views of some of the earliest saints.  Of course I admit that just because a doctrine is old does not make it right, for gnosticism is old but is most assuredly false and unscriptural.  However I do look with suspicion upon movements and doctrines that are very recent and I believe this is prudent. Enjoy.


5 Responses to “Considering the Rapture and Millennium Through Catholic Eyes”

  1. March 5, 2009 at 10:32 pm

    Even though I am Catholic the only view I currently know of the rapture is from the books Left Behind. So when I think of rapture I think of the Left Behind books. I never really looked into the Catholic view on the rapture but it’s something I will check out. I liked that you focused on simularities that we share instead of the differences.My mother and I do that and she’s a JW.

  2. March 6, 2009 at 8:58 am

    Up until Luther (16th century) you were nobody in the church if you weren’t Catholic. Granted, the catholic (lowercase c) and Catholic (uppercase C) of today are two different beasts all together. I must say though, apart from that whole justification by faith alone thing, my inability to understand that curious fascination with Mary as opposed to her Son, and the issue of the infallibility of the Pope, I too like a lot of what Catholics do. I love reading their liturgies. Especially those from the first four centuries. As I learn more about the Lenten season, I am fascinated by the significance that it originally held.

    Joshua, here are two websites you may find helpful in finding older works. The first is a Catholic website New Advent (www.newadvent.org). Understand going in that in many instances it is biased toward Rome. HOWEVA, in the top right hand corner there is a section titled FATHERS and they have downloadable files of many of the Fathers and Popes who helped fight the battles of orthodoxy. The second is the Christian Classics Ethereal Library (www.ccel.org/) you can download for free but they will ask for you to make a donation to support their work. They have practically everything that is considered public domain. Lots and lots and lots of stuff. Also in their audio section they have audio downloads of some of the books (each month they offer a free download!).

    B.A.G. it up! o o

  3. March 6, 2009 at 9:21 am

    @Lance: I am familiar already with New Advent. And it is a good site. Man, but that other site I’ve never heard of. That sounds awesome. I’ll check it out. Thanks.

    BTW, tonight I’m playing at a church in Albany (ALL-benny) with Ryan and some other guys. Then Lyndsay and I are spending the night with Ry-ry and Jess. He better not offer me a hot dog in the morning. Just sayin’.

  4. March 6, 2009 at 9:23 am

    @Angel: I have rejected the “Left Behind” version of the end times (pre-trib pre-mil). Too many things don’t add up But as far as the millennium I do lean toward the Augustinian view (amillennialism).

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