CCR 118: Is Brian Godawa a Heretic?

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HERETIC! It’s a label we throw on anyone who declares doctrine contrary to yours. But when it comes to Biblical Eschatology, there are many ways to explain the obscure and often confusing text of places like Matthew 24, the Book of Daniel, and the Book of Revelation. On this episode, we speak to our good friend Brian Godawa, who timidly asked to be back on the show to discuss his new book, ‘Tyrant! Rise of the Beast – Chronicles of the Apocalypse, Book One’. His hesitation was due to the fact that the book supported a view of eschatology called Preterism; that is a view that most of the things described in Matthew 24 and the Book of Revelation were fulfilled back in 70 AD, with the destruction of the second Jewish Temple. The arguments that support this thesis range from good ones to the more fantastical, sometimes making the alleged accounts of Nero the Roman Emperor sound as supernatural as the Bible itself. Still, as a non-salvation issue, the interpretation of eschatological passages ought to be something we can discuss openly even if we wholeheartedly disagree with one another. And while we jokingly titled this episode, “Is Brian Godawa a Heretic?” the reality is, more discussion about various views on biblical end times is important for us as a church to fully grasp the depth of the Word and how it might apply to us.

Synthesis?

Some folks believe that Bible prophecy happens cyclically where all events ultimately leads to the fulfillment of every yod and tiddle. There are times in history where political, military and religious leaders and their institutions conduct acts that echo what was written down in the Scriptures hundreds or thousands of years prior. Such events, might be mere archetypes or perhaps even partial or fragmented fulfillments leading to an ultimate fulfillment. It is the opinion of one of the hosts here, that such a theory is true because God ordained the end from the beginning. 

Isaiah 46:8-11

Remember this and stand firm,
recall it to mind, you transgressors,
remember the former things of old;
for I am God, and there is no other;
I am God, and there is none like me,
declaring the end from the beginning
and from ancient times things not yet done,
saying, ‘My counsel shall stand,
and I will accomplish all my purpose,’ 

LINKS

Click Here to visit Brian Godawa’s Website: http://godawa.com/books/chronicles-of-the-apocalypse/

13 comments… add one
  1. What a delightful conversation! I truly enjoyed these different aspects of the scriptures. This is how our discussions should be.

  2. What a delightful and intriguing discussion! Loved it!

  3. Greg Olson

    Dear Canary Cry Radio,

    Once again I’m so worried for you guys and the path that you are headed down with your anti-Israel understanding of the New Testament. I don’t know if you will ever read this feedback, but I will pray for you. Romans 8, 9 & 10 in the contact Paul wrote it.

    Blessings

  4. Mary Peters

    Brian Godawa’s remark about God divorcing Israel directly contradicts Romans 11:1. And God hates divorce.
    It would not look good for us as christians if God would divorce Israel. If christians as Brian says also “have done some things wrong” (the understatement of the year), God would have every reason to divorce from christians as well. Thankfully God is faithful to His promises, to Israel and to us.
    Read Romans 11 about the position of Israel, it cannot get much clearer than that.

  5. Nicholas Moore

    Great Show. I have to disagree with Brian. He hasn’t done a real good study of the early church fathers in sense of their eschatological views according to historical importance and direct links to the disciples.(He said that there was much disagreement and you could find various views in them. Which is partially true. The latter the church father the truer Brian’s statement) He should have studied Irenaeus. Why? Because he was converted by Polycarp, who was a disciple of John the Apostle He was also from Smyrna, one of the seven churches from the book of Revelation. I know you have to be careful when studying the early church fathers. The earlier the better, because I believe there is a mixing of Christianity around the time of Constantine and Eusebius. If there is a starting point, it is with Irenaeus, because he views come from directly from John. There is a lot we don’t know for certain, but we can be sure that the full preterist full is incorrect. I agree with a partial fulfillment in both the Gospels and Revelations. Unfortunately, Irenaeus didn’t give us the literal explanation of Revelation lol We won’t know all until Jesus returns, but there is evidence out there of where to start if you know where to look. The funny thing is that Irenaeus thinks is only 3 1/2 years instead of the 7. Be sure to check him out, you can find his writings online. They were an eye-opener and give us a insight back to the Apostle John’s beliefs.

    1. Jef Chandley

      Brian is clearly confused. He made a mix of preterism and godawanism and has no clue of what is figurative and what is not. When we are confronted with some strange things like “Is John still alive?” we must be humble and say “I don’t know”, not assume that “it’s absurd that he could be alive, so Jesus second coming has already happened”. Good show though.

      1. Damien

        I agree with Jef, I don’t believe Brian knows enough about the material. Not saying he doesn’t know somethings about the issue, but not enough to write a book on the subject. I do agree that some people who are pre-trib, dispensational, premillennial have a hard time understanding that there are other Christian views. Most of them really don’t even understand their own view.

  6. Wayne Stronks

    Another really great show, thank you for not protecting us from different views. At the end of the show when Brian responded to your question about what he thought of people with different views, and he said “HERETICS!” It was hilarious! Blessings from Canada

  7. SaNoneemous

    Is Brian Godawa the guy using scripture to create his very own novels? You see, I don’t understand this. He is using his talents as a writer to fabricate false stories and everybody is praising him because he is so biblically literate in his false stories. The problem I have with his work is not that people claim him to be a heretic, but rather that he would lead newcomers to the faith on a naive and fictitious path of wonderment. It saddens me to know that a person with so much biblical knowledge would go out of his way to promote a narrative which is of his own creation rather than glorifying what he has already been served with. It saddens me that he has to take scripture and mould it into his own creation and perspective for a personal agenda. I may be so wrong on this very subject, but at least that’s the way I took it and understood it. I’ve been a long time listener of this show and I remember Brian in his earlier years but things are getting out of hand and it seems like this is just another show to tickle the ears and to provide some form of entertainment without actually helping the body. I am being hypocritical I suppose, but it just seems like such a waste of talent because all of this knowledge is being warped into a narrative. It’s taking sacred knowledge and bastardizing it into fantasy. Imagine this being taught to children? I just fear that this is dangerous territory that is being taken seriously enough for people to be influenced by it and therefore, falling into a trap of fiction. Some things are black and white. The truth is not subjective – this is the crux of the matter. Good on him for enjoying himself, but I do not see how his work benefits the body and I wish him the very best. I just worry that his work may be more damaging/offensive to newcomers than those better versed. I am in no position to point fingers but I honestly felt offended and disappointed by the direction this talented man has taken and I wish that he does not become another snakeoil salesmen whose next enterprise will be that of the comic book. God Bless and no hard feelings.

  8. George Brewer

    Kind of curious how Brian integrates Ezekiel, Daniel, a bunch of the minor prophets and Revelation?
    One other aspect that is almost completely ignored. I’d like to get Dr. Mike’s view on this as well. There is a view that Matthew was not originally written in Aramaic, but in fact written in Hebrew. The argument goes there are phrases that don’t make sense contextually in Aramaic, but do make sense in Hebrew. In particular, to those from a Pharisaic background who are Messianic.
    Maybe Jonathan Cahn could help out.
    The basic idea is, you have a Hebrew text translated into Aramaic, then Greek. Whereas the OT was translated into Greek, the Septuagint and the NT was primarily written in Greek.

  9. Ben McReynolds

    This episode was important to me. I thoroughly enjoy your research, though I find myself leaning towards Preterism. It was nice to have a healthy conversation about the viewpoint.

    I’d like to take a stab at answering a couple questions that were posed to Brian. He answered fine, but I have a couple thoughts to add.

    1st: What is the benefit of Preterism when the Futurists seem to be the ones taking the present seriously?

    The benefit is it causes us to be honest about where exactly we have placed our faith. In a way, I have a similar testimony to Brian’s, although I never rode the Hal Lindsey wave. It’s important for us as Christians not to hinge our faith upon faulty expectations. There are many casualties to ministries that make epic predictions that don’t pan out. Certainly there are those who remain faithful, but often times that’s by simply continuing to move the goalposts, which isn’t very sound. My personal background is in Charismatic Christianity, which I love, but which I also have left. I have seen many friends leave the faith due to unmet and impossible expectations, and I personally have come to cherish a much more historical and simple approach to church and the faith (whatever that might mean, right?). In the end, my point is simply that, if there are logical reasons to consider and even accept Preterism, then there really is no loss, but rather a certain gain to our faith. That gain is that it is no longer attached to false expectations. That doesn’t mean there aren’t surprises or continual issues that cause pause. But if we are constantly making predictions or cleaving to predictions that don’t tend to pan out, our faith may very well be confused with an adrenaline rush. Another reason is that our faith becomes very unattractive to those observing us, who do not get that rush.

    2nd: What about the forces of evil that are trying to bring prophecy to pass in our day?

    Perhaps a bit convoluted, but I find this topic super interesting and important to consider. If we accept that demons cannot see the future, then their only access to what will happen in the future is prophecy from scripture, much like us. However, their main tool is deception, therefore, if they can deceive Christians into believing that these prophecies are “literal” and remain to be experienced in the future, then they will simply employ their tactics and minions (people) to the end of drawing Christian attention toward events of their making, using Scripture as their guide. The benefit of at least some openness to Preterism is that, though we are paying attention to current events and connecting dots in prophecy, we do not find ourselves exceptionally vulnerable to “fake fulfillment” (if such a thing can exist) and driven about by changing winds of doctrine.

    I realize that there are a multitude of ways to look at the literal vs. allegorical interpretation debate. But one thought that I had is in regards to Joseph’s dreams. In Genesis we read about two dreams, both allegorical, and both describing the same event. The response of Joseph’s family to his dreams is indicative of the way that the Hebrews viewed these things. They immediately understood it to be allegorical…and immediately took offense (an important step toward their fulfillment!). We read in the same few chapters of the fulfillment of these prophetic dreams, and so we aren’t left with futurist/preterist questions. So we know that they are allegorical, and we know that the audience to whom they were delivered were going to/expected to understand them as allegorical.

    Thank you so much for your hard work at Canary Cry Radio and News Talk. I love what you’re doing.

    -Ben

  10. Preterism is heretical

    The case against preterism is quite simple in light of the fact that history itself dictates it to be in error- otherwise Christ was if one believes His words in scripture. And that is not a false dichotomy as the following evidences clearly elucidate:

    “In order to make 70 AD the magic year, we would have to delete dozens of prophecies that were never fulfilled. When was the Gospel preached to all the nations? When was the Mark of the Beast implemented? What about China’s 200-million-man army? When did 100-pound hailstones fall from the sky? And what date was it when the Euphrates River dried up?
    .
    The questions are endless. Why did we have the rebirth of Israel? If Jerusalem was forever removed from being the burdensome stone, why has it now returned to that status? When did all the Jews shout, “Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord,” as Jesus said they would?
    .
    After being so strict in their interpretation of Matthew 24:34, preterists then run roughshod over many clear statements of Scripture. They say that although the “resurrection” happened in 70 AD, the bodies of Christians were left in the grave…”
    .
    Read the full article here: https://www.raptureready.com/rr-preterism.html
    .
    And for a compehensive, in-depth refutation, go here: http://www.pre-trib.org/articles/view/has-bible-prophecy-already-been-fulfilled
    .
    See also this exposition of amillennialism which shares a few of the same theological errors: http://www.bibleprophecyblog.com/2014/11/what-is-amillennialism.html

  11. Couple questions: So, would Brain then believe in Replacement Theology? That’s kind of the gist of what I got. 2nd question is I didn’t quite get on what preterists believe about transhumanism or taking these upcoming chips that will be planted in the brain or mixing of dna with that of animal or other. It is a fact they are making these smart cities, or agenda 2030 where you will need a chip in order to get around. And what about the one world order they are trying to bring in? It seems preterists don’t talk much about this. They seem to believe that things are going to or getting better, not worse, but if there is a one world government, it will be anti Christian.

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