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  #31  
Old 31st December 2009, 04:06 AM
Ron Conte Ron Conte is offline
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Also, consider these verses:

[Isaiah]
{65:20} There will no longer be an infant of only a few days there, nor an elder who does not complete his days. For a mere child dies at a hundred years of age, and a sinner of a hundred years will be accursed.
{65:21} And they will build houses, and will inhabit them. And they will plant vineyards, and will eat their fruits.

This does not describe the current time period, before or during the tribulation. People still die in infancy; people still die prior to their elder years.

But it cannot describe the time after the General Resurrection, when there is no longer marriage (Mt 22:30) or death (Rev 21:4). In that passage from Isaiah, there are still infants, and there are still some persons who die at the age of one hundred (who are considered accursed for dying so young). And this implies that even holy persons die during that time, though not before passing 100 years of age.

Therefore, that passage must describe the time between the end of the tribulation, Christ's first return, and the General Resurrection, Christ's second return, which is called the Millennium of peace and holiness.

Also, why can't the restoration of all things occur in stages?

1. Jesus' life, death, and resurrection
2. the first resurrection and the Millennium
3. the general resurrection and the new heaven and new earth.

[Acts]
{3:20} And then, when the time of consolation will have arrived from the presence of the Lord, he will send the One who was foretold to you, Jesus Christ,
{3:21} whom heaven certainly must take up, until the time of the restoration of all things, which God has spoken of by the mouth of his holy prophets, from ages past.
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  #32  
Old 31st December 2009, 06:12 PM
Pontifex Pontifex is offline
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Ron,

When Peter speaks of the «restoration of all things», he does not mean the restoration of «some things» or a «very substantial restoration that is worldwide». One need not be an expert theologian (which I am certainly not) to understand this verse as having a significant eschatological meaning. If all things are restored, that means they are all restored. That entails that the Kingdom of God will have come in its fullness, after the universal judgment.

«The Church will receive her perfection only in the glory of heaven, when will come the time of the renewal of all things. At that time, together with the human race, the universe itself, which is so closely related to man and which attains its destiny through him, will be perfectly re-established in Christ.» (CCC 1042)

Sacred Scripture calls this mysterious renewal, which will transform humanity and the world, "new heavens and a new earth." It will be the definitive realization of God's plan to bring under a single head "all things in [Christ], things in heaven and things on earth." (CCC 1043)

The 'restoration of all things' which St. Peter refers to when he explains to the Jews, right after Pentecost, that Christ will return and will return from Heaven not until the time of the restoration of all things, means precisely that: that He rose from the dead, ascendend into Heaven and will come back not until the appointed time. The appointed time is when it is the time for the restoration of all things as explained above. Scripture cannot contradict itself.

[Acts]
{3:20} And then, when the time of consolation will have arrived from the presence of the Lord, he will send the One who was foretold to you, Jesus Christ,
{3:21} whom heaven certainly must take up, until the time of the restoration of all things, which God has spoken of by the mouth of his holy prophets, from ages past.

The Apostle’s Creed also explains Jesus sits at the right hand of the Father, from thence he shall come to judge the living and the dead (and restore all things)

The only «stages» I see in the restoration of all things are (these all occur during Christ`s Second and last coming):
1. Defeat the Antichrist by the mouth of Our Lord
2. General Resurrection
3. New Heaven, New Earth
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  #33  
Old 31st December 2009, 08:09 PM
Ron Conte Ron Conte is offline
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"If all things are restored, that means they are all restored." Not necessarily. My intepretation has support in Scripture, in the verses I cited from Isaiah and Revelation. Can you give an interpretation of those verses that fits with your position that Christ returns once?

Here are some examples from Scripture in which 'all' needs to be interpreted, and cannot be correctly understood as entirely literal.

[Matthew]
{3:14} But John refused him, saying, “I ought to be baptized by you, and yet you come to me?”
{3:15} And responding, Jesus said to him: “Permit this for now. For in this way it is fitting for us to fulfill all justice.” Then he allowed him.

Was all justice fulfilled by John's Baptism of Jesus? Did this fulfillment occur all at once? No, it was part of a process that evetually fulfills all justice. Similarly, in my interpretation of the restoration of all things, there is a process. This is a reasonable interpretation which you have not shown to be false.

{10:22} And you will be hated by all for the sake of my name. But whoever will have persevered, even to the end, the same shall be saved.

Is it literally true that you [Christians] will be hated by 'all'? No, rather this is a general statement about a very broad persecution of Christians. To interpret 'all' as being without any limits would make this statement false. Obviously, Christians will not be hated by all other Christians. And we need not conclude that all non-Christians without exception will hate all Christians, for God's grace cannot fail to have some good effects even among non-Christians.

So again, taking the word 'all' and basing one's entire interpretation on that word leads to an incorrect understanding.

{10:23} Now when they persecute you in one city, flee into another. Amen I say to you, you will not have exhausted all the cities of Israel, before the Son of man returns.

This use of the word all, and this figure of fleeing from city to city is not literal, but figurative. Christ is not saying that Christians will flee from one city to another, in Israel, being persecuted, and not reach the last city before His return.

{13:31} He proposed another parable to them, saying: “The kingdom of heaven is like a grain of mustard seed, which a man took and sowed in his field.
{13:32} It is, indeed, the least of all seeds, but when it has grown, it is greater than all the plants, and it becomes a tree, so much so that the birds of the air come and dwell in its branches.”

Many people have criticized this expression of Christ, saying that His statement is not true, because some seeds are smaller than the mustard seed. But again, an overly literal interpretation is the problem. Christ did not mean literally 'all' seeds without exception. It was a general statement, that mustard seeds are particularly small.

Now this next passage clearly refutes your interpretation of Acts:

{17:11} But in response, he said to them: “Elijah, indeed, shall arrive and restore all things.
{17:12} But I say to you, that Elijah has already arrived, and they did not recognize him, but they did whatever they wanted to him. So also shall the Son of man suffer from them.”
{17:13} Then the disciples understood that he had spoken to them about John the Baptist.

Jesus stated that Elijah would arrive and restore all things. According to your interpretation, this can only refer to the general Judgment. But then Jesus states that Elijah has already arrived. So are all things restored? And Scripture says that Jesus was speaking about John the Baptist as a type of Elijah. Yet the General Resurrection has not yet occurred. Your interpretation of Acts is refuted by this passage from Matthew 17.

But my interpretation works well with the above passage. The restoration of all things is in stages. John the Baptist was the herald of that first stage of restoration, as Christ explicitly taught.

Then, in my eschatology, Enoch and Elijah are the two prophets of revelation, who preach prior to the first return of Christ. Then the First Resurrection occurs, with all the Saints and martyrs being resurrected, including John the Baptist. After a long time of peace and holiness on earth follows, which is an even greater level of restoration.

Finally, Christ returns for the general Judgment, and completes the restoration of all things.

So my interpretation fits with the other passages of Scripture I've cited, and yours does not.
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  #34  
Old 31st December 2009, 09:15 PM
Pontifex Pontifex is offline
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Ron,

Christ is the Restorer of all things, not Elijah, nor John the Baptist.

Peter, in Acts, clearly says when Christ returns: {3:20} And then, when the time of consolation will have arrived from the presence of the Lord, he will send the One who was foretold to you, Jesus Christ,{3:21} whom heaven certainly must take up, until the time of the restoration of all things, which God has spoken of by the mouth of his holy prophets, from ages past.

The Church clearly teaches what the restoration of all things, in its eschatological sense, means as I have cited previously. I cite them again.

The Church will receive her perfection only in the glory of heaven, when will come the time of the renewal of all things. At that time, together with the human race, the universe itself, which is so closely related to man and which attains its destiny through him, will be perfectly re-established in Christ.» (CCC 1042)

Sacred Scripture calls this mysterious renewal, which will transform humanity and the world, "new heavens and a new earth." It will be the definitive realization of God's plan to bring under a single head "all things in [Christ], things in heaven and things on earth." (CCC 1043)

You had ask me: «Your argument still depends upon the single assumption that the 'restoration of all things' can only refer to the new heaven and new earth. You still have not given any proof for that assumption. Your explanation above follows after that assumption, but does not prove it.»

I think I have proven this point.

My question to you is what is Peter refering to when he speaks of the Return of Christ «whom heaven certainly must take up, until the time of the restoration of all things» ?

Thanks.
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  #35  
Old 31st December 2009, 10:37 PM
Ron Conte Ron Conte is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pontifex View Post
Christ is the Restorer of all things, not Elijah, nor John the Baptist.
The above statement contradicts what Christ taught in Matthew:

{17:11} But in response, he said to them: “Elijah, indeed, shall arrive and restore all things.
{17:12} But I say to you, that Elijah has already arrived, and they did not recognize him, but they did whatever they wanted to him. So also shall the Son of man suffer from them.”
{17:13} Then the disciples understood that he had spoken to them about John the Baptist.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pontifex View Post
Peter, in Acts, clearly says when Christ returns: {3:20} And then, when the time of consolation will have arrived from the presence of the Lord, he will send the One who was foretold to you, Jesus Christ,{3:21} whom heaven certainly must take up, until the time of the restoration of all things, which God has spoken of by the mouth of his holy prophets, from ages past.
This is merely your interpretation. It seems to you that the meaning of that passage is as you stated. But your interpetation openly contradicts what Christ said in Matthew. And your interpretation leaves you with a position that cannot explain the passages I cited from Isaiah and Revelation.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pontifex View Post
The Church clearly teaches what the restoration of all things, in its eschatological sense, means as I have cited previously. I cite them again.

The Church will receive her perfection only in the glory of heaven, when will come the time of the renewal of all things. At that time, together with the human race, the universe itself, which is so closely related to man and which attains its destiny through him, will be perfectly re-established in Christ.» (CCC 1042)

Sacred Scripture calls this mysterious renewal, which will transform humanity and the world, "new heavens and a new earth." It will be the definitive realization of God's plan to bring under a single head "all things in [Christ], things in heaven and things on earth." (CCC 1043)
This is your interpretation of what the Catechism is saying. It is not the clear teaching of the Church, but only your interpretation.

My interpretation is that, in one sense, there is a restoration at the general judgment. But in another sense the restoration occurs also at the return of Christ at the end of the tribulation. And in another sense the restoration occurs at the time of Christ's ministry.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Pontifex View Post
You had ask me: «Your argument still depends upon the single assumption that the 'restoration of all things' can only refer to the new heaven and new earth. You still have not given any proof for that assumption. Your explanation above follows after that assumption, but does not prove it.»

I think I have proven this point.

My question to you is what is Peter refering to when he speaks of the Return of Christ «whom heaven certainly must take up, until the time of the restoration of all things» ?

You have not proven the point. You cite some paragraphs from the Catechism, and you make the same assumption for those quotes also.

Peter is speaking of both events, that is, of both returns of Christ, each of which is a type of restoration of all things, just as Christ's first arrival was a type of restoration of all things.

Whether Christ returns once or twice is an open question. However, your position that the verse from Acts can only be interpreted in one way is not correct. And it is more of an error for you to now claim that the Church teaches that the restoration of all things must be interpreted as only occurring at the general Resurrection.

For more on this topic, see this booklet by Fr. Roux of the Marian Movement of Priests:
http://www.catholicculture.org/cultu...TOKEN=65738760
Quote:
I was told that the following question was addressed to the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith: "Is the return of Christ in glory to be interpreted as his return for the Last Judgment, or rather on this earth?"; The answer was as follows: "The Church has never taken an official stand on this subject, therefore one can interpret either way.";
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  #36  
Old 31st December 2009, 11:45 PM
Pontifex Pontifex is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron Conte View Post
Whether Christ returns once or twice is an open question. However, your position that the verse from Acts can only be interpreted in one way is not correct. And it is more of an error for you to now claim that the Church teaches that the restoration of all things must be interpreted as only occurring at the general Resurrection.

Thanks Ron, I appreciate your insights, and will look into some of your objections. I think that on the whole, I agree with your position. I had a conversation with a friend on this topic who had brought that verse and he was convinced it refuted the idea of a possible two returns of Christ. I could not find an argument to counter his claim. I figured I would bring these arguments to you and test the argument.
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  #37  
Old 13th May 2012, 01:30 AM
myLivingBread myLivingBread is offline
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Ron,

Will the resurrected Saints(during first resurrection) will also be assumed in heaven on the second assumption of Blessed Virgin Mary?
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  #38  
Old 13th May 2012, 02:40 AM
Ron Conte Ron Conte is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by myLivingBread View Post
Ron,

Will the resurrected Saints(during first resurrection) will also be assumed in heaven on the second assumption of Blessed Virgin Mary?

No, I think that they remain on earth to guide the Church during the Millennium of peace and holiness.
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