DOBBS-VS-PRESTON WRITTEN DEBATE
SECOND AFFIRMATIVE SUBMITTED 3-7-06
DON K. PRESTON
The negative should follow the affirmative. Dobbs’s “negative” was unproven assertions, and sarcasm.
Dobbs: “Upon his final return, he will afflict those who afflicted his disciples.” The word tribulation (thlipsis), is never used of hell, as Dobbs believes. Never. Dobbs is redefining Biblical words.
Dobbs ignores the fact that it was the Jews who were persecuting the Thessalonians. He ignored my question: At his final coming, will Jesus cause the Jews to be persecuted, as they were persecuting the Thessalonians?
Dobbs ignored the fact that Paul wrote to living humans, being persecuted, “to you who are being troubled.” Per Dobbs, Paul offered the Thessalonians not one word of promise of relief from their suffering. Instead, Paul ignored their suffering, and told them that some distant generation of Christians would receive relief from their persecution. This perverts the emphatic statements of the text. This mocks the suffering of the Thessalonians.
The Thessalonians, (“to you who are being troubled”), would receive relief (anesis), from persecution, “when the Lord Jesus is revealed” (v. 4-7). Anesis is relief, never reward.
To receive relief from that persecution, “when the Lord Jesus is revealed,” the Thessalonians would have to be alive, under persecution, at the time of the Lord’s coming.
I asked: “Did Jesus come, in the lifetime of the Thessalonians, and give them rest from their then present persecution? Yes or No.”
Dobbs said the question “is not clear,” and did not “explain what coming.” Dobbs is desperate. My question related to 2 Thessalonians 1, the final coming. He is obfuscating.
The parousia in 2 Thessalonians 1 is the final coming (Dobbs).
But the parousia in 2 Thessalonians 1 would give the Thessalonians relief from their on-going persecution.
The parousia of 2 Thessalonians 1 did not occur (Dobbs).
Therefore, Paul’s promise of 2 Thessalonians 1 failed. Paul is a false prophet.
Argument: (Dobbs ignored this argument. I will modify and repeat).
Jesus: All the righteous martyrs would be judged and avenged at his coming in the judgment of Israel in his generation (Matthew 23:29-39).
The Thessalonian Christians were suffering at the hands of the Jews (Acts 17:1-5; 1 Thes. 2:15-17; 2 Thes. 1:4f).
Paul promised vindication and relief for the living Thessalonian saints suffering for Christ, at Christ’s (final) coming (2 Thessalonians 1:4-10).
Therefore, the final coming of Christ of 2 Thessalonians 1 was in the judgment of Israel in A.D. 70.
Jesus said the Jews would fill the measure of their sin, by persecuting his saints (Matthew 23:31-36), and be judged at his parousia, in his generation (Matthew 23:29-36).
Paul said the Jews were filling the measure of their sin by persecuting the Thessalonians, and were about to be judged, at the final coming of the Lord (1 Thes. 2:15-17; 2 Thes. 1:4-10).
Therefore, the coming of Christ in 2 Thessalonians 1, was Christ’s parousia in judgment of Israel in A.D. 70, for persecuting the righteous.
Re-framed, the argument is:
The parousia of 2 Thessalonians 1 is the judgment of the persecutors of the Thessalonians.
The persecutors (and instigators of the persecutions) were the Jews (Acts 17:1-5; 1 Thes. 2:15-17), who were to be judged at Christ’s coming in A.D. 70 (Matthew 23:29-39).
Therefore, the (final) coming of Christ in 2 Thessalonians 1 was the coming of Christ in A.D. 70.
Dobbs has ignored my arguments, and denied the inspired text.
The following facts are irrefutable:
It was the Thessalonians being persecuted.
It was the Jews persecuting and instigating that persecution.
Jesus had foretold that persecution (Matthew 23:29f).
Jesus was coming in judgment of Israel for that persecution, in the first century.
The persecution and promise of soon coming judgment in 1 Thessalonians 2:15-17 was the same persecution and promise of soon coming judgment and vindication promised by Jesus for A. D. 70 (Matthew 23:29f).
The persecution and promise of soon coming judgment in 2 Thessalonians 1 was the same persecution and promise of soon coming judgment as 1 Thessalonians 2:15-17.
It therefore follows, inexorably, that the soon coming parousia of 2 Thessalonians 1, the final coming, was the coming of Christ in A.D. 70.
Dobbs believes that 2 Thessalonians 1, 1 Corinthians 15, 1 Thessalonians 4:13f, 2 Peter 3, Revelation 20-21 all speak of the same (final) coming of Christ. It therefore follows that all of these prophecies were fulfilled in A.D. 70.
Paul’s promise to the Thessalonians, “to you who are being troubled, rest with us, when the Lord Jesus is revealed,” was fulfilled. Christ’s final coming was in A.D. 70.