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THE DEVELOPMENT AND ORIGINS OF MODERN PRE WRATH & INTER SEAL POSITIONS – A BRIEF SYNOPSIS

The first author to identify himself as "Pre Wrath" was CS Lovett in his book "The Latest Word on the Last Days" (1980). It was probably Lovett who actually invented the term 'Pre Wrath'. His view of Pre Wrath combined the Post Tribulational views of Dr. Samuel Tregallis with a Pre Wrath position because he placed the wrath of God only at the very closing phase of the final 7 years preceded by the rapture.

Dr, Tregallis, an able Greek scholar, had a much more basic view of dispensationalism than John Nelson Darby and he did not subscribe to Darby's Pre Tribulationism. His works were republished by the Sign Ministries of Bob Van Kampen who saw Tregallis as important in developing Pre Wrath in that the church would suffer tribulation, but it was Lovett who first set the precedent in modern terms of the Rapture being Post Tribulational, yet Pre Wrath in his book in 1980.

Others began to hold to a Rapture following the 6th seal claiming early Patristic history supported it. This included Stuart Traille who fell into apostasy and became a cult leader but who, like Lonnie Frisbee, Moe Berg and other figures who turned sour in the Jesus Movement, had a pervasive influence on saved hippies (it was at this time in the Jesus Movement that I was first exposed to and believed the rapture followed the 6th Seal in the early 1970s). The Jesus Movement of Chuck Smith that became Calvary Chapel however was staunchly Pre Tribulational.

Another very influential figure in the Jesus Movement at this time who was not Pre Tribulational was Dr. Walter Martin.

This trend in mainstream circles was spawned in considerable measure in the 1970s by Robert Gundry's book 'First the Anti Christ', (although Gundry himself favored a Post Tribulational view seeing the Great Tribulation as the full seven years). Gundry explored the implications of the eschatological writings of Hippolitus in particular. 

Along this line in the nineteen eighties and nineties, Bob Van Kampen and Mar Rosenthal both claimed that they were not setting any new precedents and denied they were entering new territory. Marvin Rosenthal stated: "Pre Wrath is consistent with what is known of the beliefs of the early church" and Bob Van Kampen stated that "Pre Wrath simply expands on the position of the church fathers". Both claimed not be setting a new precedent, but influenced by Tregallis, Gundry and others, claimed they were only returning to what the early church believed. Others such as researcher Ed Tarkowski disputed this and saw Pre Wrath as breaking new turf suggesting that there is as much evidence from the early church that could just as well support a full seven year Post Tribulational position. 

Much of the initial controversy surrounding Pre Wrath was not about the position itself but the effect of theocratic politics as Marv Rosenthal was a known figure within the world of Jewish missions and evangelism when nearly all Jewish mission agencies were solidly Pre Tribulational and Marvin Rosenthal dared to break ranks. It cost him his leadership position with an established evangelistic mission to the Jews. 

Intra Seal is closely akin to Pre Wrath. Intra Seal is Post Tribulational but it does not view the entire seven years as the Great Tribulation. It varies from Pre Wrath however on the identity of the restrainer which Intra Seal sees as The Holy Spirit (akin to Pre Tribulationalism). In a sense, just as the original Pre Wrath of CS Lovett combined Pre Wrath with Post Tribulationalism, Intra Seal combines Pre Wrath with Pre Tribulationism concerning the identity of the Restrainer.     

Conclusion

Patristic history cannot absolutely confirm Pre Wrath, Intra Seal, or Post Tribulastionism. It does however confirm that Pre Tribulationism was never the view of the early church.

Although Dr. Tregallis was Post Tribulational, as Bob Van Kampen asserted in his republishing the works of Samuel Tregallis, he nonetheless had a profound impact on the development of Pre Wrath. Van Kampen actually purchased the publishing rights for Tregallis' book.

The influence of Robert Gundry in academic and scholarly circles in the development of Pre Wrath and Intra Seal cannot be over stated, pointing back to the early church.

It was CS Lovett however who is the best demonstrable candidate to be called the father of modern Pre Wrath, and it was he who at least in published form, first coined the term. 

Pre Wrath and Inter Seal became refined versions of what technically commenced, at least in modern terms, with CS Lovett.

Published in Blog Items

We received these questions:

The first time I ever heard of you was watching THE DANIEL PROJECT on Netflix (probably 4 years ago). The second time I saw you was this week, on YouTube. It was a response to Dr James White. That was … “wow.” I’m deliberately keeping this short because I want to get to the reason I’m reaching out to you, but I have to say, I also agree that Calvin was a brutal and bloody man who caused his beliefs to spread by the sword. I cannot see how any modern Christian can be a Calvinist not only because of how Calvin was, but because of the whole 'once saved, always saved, do as you like’ pitch.

I also looked at your video on John McArthur, suggesting that he said we can take the mark of the beast and still go to heaven. Well, you handled that just as well. I actually shared both of those videos with a few communities I'm a member of.

Right now, I'm listening to a YouTube video on "what is apostasy," and you are sharing your beliefs, which isn't Pre, or Mid (kinda) and certainly isn't Post. You seem to have your own beliefs, but they You have a good amount of knowledge on stuff, and I'd like to ask you a few questions to get your feedback. Some are more essential to me, others not as much.

If you think making a video will be easier to answer, that would be fine ... just please don't mention my real name. My online alias is 'MessengerOfTruth" and has been for 15 years.

Little bit about me. I am a Christian. I was born into Christendom (raised by devout parents, disciple by God-fearing men who loved the Lord, read since I was a child, etc). Pentecostal: because retaining that which has been taught from the beginning is vital. Protestant: because I'm against that whore, Ba'al, who is the enemy of the Jews and Christians.


Now, for my questions. Some essential. Some not essential.

We agree on the Holy Spirit being the Restrainer, but slightly differently. I believe the Spirit is what the world calls our “conscious” – always telling us to avoid or not do evil. I believe this is why the world is plunged into utter lawlessness because the Restrainer is removed, worst even than the lawless days of Noah. He has also been the One who points to the Son, as I see in Psalm 2 (Father speaking, Son speaking, then Spirit saying to “Kiss [worship] the son,” and since it’s the Comforter who glorifies Jesus, He has always glorified the Son.

ESSENTIALS

  1. You stated that it’s not plausible for the Holy Spirit to be taken out. But here is my questions on that:
    1. the world is plunged into utter chaos. Lawlessness. The rider on the red horse isn’t just war, but its global civil unrest. Men do not have a “conscious.” Wouldn’t this be a removal of the Holy Spirit who retrains men from doing evil?
    2. in Revelation, we read in the letters, “he that has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the Churches.” But later in Revelation, when Tribulation is going on in the earth, all we see is “he that hath and ear, let him hear.” There is no more mention of the Holy Spirit or the Church. Isn’t this significant?
    3. in Revelation, we are also told several times that mankind will not repent. But we know it’s the Churches job not preach the Gospel, and the Spirits job to call men to repentance. But there is neither Gospel nor Repentance during the Tribulation period. In fact, it is an ANGEL who say to not take the mark nor worship the beast. An angel is doing the work of the Church and the Spirit. I ask myself “why?” … if the Church or the Spirit are on the earth. And why doesn’t the angel say “repent” or “turn to Jesus”? The Gospel doesn’t appear to be preached either.
  2. A question that no one has ever answer satisfactory when I ask, is, how did the souls of men get IN HEAVEN {before} the FIRST SEAL is even broken? My question is, if there is no Pre-Tribulation Rapture, how did the souls of men, and the 24 Elders (whom I believe to be the 12 Tribal patriarchs and the 12 Disciples, because the Messiah is the Cornerstone that bind BOTH Covenants), get in Heaven if they weren’t Raptured.
  3. Do you see the first few seals as being wrath? I do. I see the first as religiosity. Godless religiosity. It just doesn’t make sense to me why the first rider would be a man, but all other riders be things. That’s just not consistent. Plus, I can see the religiosity of this world everywhere in the last 300 years until today. The red rider of war, civil unrest, lawlessness. If a man wants to rape a women, what will stop him? If a man hates another man and wants to kill him, what will stop him … IF the Restrainer who restrains men from evil is gone … and no one even repents … each being the activity of the Holy Spirit. Isn’t this wrath? Then the high inflation. Desperate people do desperate things. And a loaf of bread for a days wage will make millions pretty desperate. Neighbors killing neighbors for a can of food. Fathers abandoning their families just to feed themselves. Women selling their bodies. Do you see wrath in this? Then of course, all the death. Do you see wrath in this? I see wrath in ALL the seals.
  4. Why does no one deal with what follows the last rider. Hell. Why does no one ask “why isn’t Paradise or Heaven following death?” Perhaps its because all who die are going to … Hell? Else, why is Hell following and swallowing up all the dead? Why not Heaven? Why not heaven AND hell?
  5. Jesus said He will keep His people FROM the hour. My examination of the Greek word ek seems to suggest that its sort of an avoidance, to never experience, to be saved FROM in, not go through it, or be in it. But, it’s the same Greek word when dealing with the Uncountable Number from all nations and tribes and tongues. Ek. The English translation seems to give an impression that they literally come out of the Tribulation, which makes no sense because an ‘uncountable number” cannot come out of 6 billion. But the Greek seems to suggest that the number never even experiences the Tribulation. Saved FROM, not OUT OF.

I totally disagree with Post Tribbers. That is an insult to God, a misrepresentation of His Character, even spits on the testimony of Abraham, Job, and the deliverance of Noah and Lot.

I never had an issue with Mid-Tribbers.

I do not agree with Pre-Tribbers because they are younger than me, and they default to the “last trumpet” because they don’t take the time to look at Jewish or Roman culture and the military cries (last trump), and they separate wrath from the Tribulation period.

But you sir, are neither Mid nor Pre-Wrather. You certainly are not that demonic Post-Tribbulation. I get that you are expressing your thoughts, not “absolute doctrinal facts”. But I’m wondering how you view this basic questions.

NON-ESSENTIALS

  1. Do you know when the Pre-Wrath belief started? What I have read, several years back, was that it is less than 20 years old. I had heard of Pre, Mid and Post Tribulation believers since my early childhood, but never did I hear about Pre-Wrath until more recently. I am now in my mid-40s. New doesn’t always mean wrong, but, this raises a measure of concern.
  2. What about the writings of men like Ieranues, Cyprian, and Ephriam, all of whom taught a Pre-Tribulation Rapture? Do you think their writings in the 1st, 2nd and 3rd Centuries are valid, and that the belief resurfaced in the 1600s through people like William Cunninghame, Joseph Mede and others (when the Bible was written in English and men could read for themselves)? I know this did not start with John Darby because Darbys grandparents weren’t even born.
  3. Do you believe that our belief on the Rapture is essential to Salvation? For instance, do you see Hebrews 3 & 4 as a warning to the Post-Tribulation people, and unbelievers, who refuse to believe in the deliverance of God, just as Israel refused to believe Joshua and Caleb and were not allowed into the Promised Land (below)? The author of Hebrews 3&4 seem to be warning us not to be of that same unbelief, denying the delivering messages of Joshua and Caleb, or else we also will be left out of the Promised Land (above)? The warning seems very clear. Do not fall into the unbelief of rejecting Gods deliverance, or that unbelief will turn out to be our liter rejection, just as it literally caused Israel to be left out.

Israel is your example.
Israel is your example.
Israel is your example.

That’s in my head over and over again. And so I consider the goodness AND the severity of God, not His goodness only.

What do you think this all means?

and we respond...

Blessings and thank you for your e mail

Our view pre dates Pre Wrath in that Jacob Prasch, like various others, believed the rapture is between 6th & 7th seals etc. prior to the Pre Wrath position  being crystallized by the books of Marvin Rosenthal and Robert Van Kampen.  Our position is documented and explained at length in the Book "Harpazo" (available on Amazon, Kendal, from Moriel etc.). It is nothing more than what was later called Pre Wrath that in common with Pre Trib holds that The Holy Spirit is the Restrainer of 2 Thessalonians chapter 2, and certain other more minor differences to do with the timing of the ministry on the Two Witnesses in Revelation  chapter 11. Intra Seal is a version of Pre Wrath and Pre Wrath has the same primary elements as Intra Seal. The two positions are  in essence not only very  similar or more accurately two variations of the same fundamental position although the Pneumatological differences are marked.

Moriel and Jacob Prasch reject the concept new or further doctrinal revelation (Revelation 22:18). The scripture simply teaches an ever clearer understanding however off what is already revealed in God's Word concerning The Last days (Daniel 12: 4), which is the very meaning off the Greek term 'Apocalypsis'.

We cannot dialogue by e mail about issues already elaborated on which are again published and explored in depth in 'Harpazo'.

The Holy Spirit is a Divine Person. He convicts of sin through the mechanism of conscience but He is not our conscience. One is a person, the other is not. With respect, as you have stated it, your position is very seriously wrong.  

When conscience becomes dysfunctional, the Greek text of the New Testament describes this with a term that we normally translate as the conscience becoming "seared"; a phenomena that increases in the last days (1 Timothy 4:2). This is not the same thing as  The Holy Spirit ceasing to restrain.

Sincerely,


Moriel/ JJP

 

 

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