Wonder where the band's name originated?
Craig Blomberg's Degrees of Heavenly Reward in the Kingdom of Heaven? in terms of Dogmas, Doctrines, Distinctives, and Details.*
Dogmas. Blomberg does a fabulous job of revealing the dangers that “heavenly rewards” poses to the essentials of Christianity. He not only asserts salvation by faith in Christ alone (159) in this life (172) but also that Heaven will not open for those who “flagrantly repudiate Christ without subsequent repentance” (163). Blomberg rightly warns that the threat is not contingent upon whether one believes in “heavenly rewards,” (165), but that one's profession of faith may prove to be entirely vacuous, thus excluding them from Heaven because they thought that the lack of fruit in their lives indicated the absence of future rewards, not the absence of their salvation (172). “Saving faith does over time lead to a visible transformation in lifestyle and to growth in holiness” (172) for a tree is recognized by its fruit!
The “prosperity gospel” is a false gospel, for health and wealth supplant Christ crucified.
The truths certainly add a whole new dimension of fear to the commission of sin, for it is entirely possible for the Lord to return during our “worst moment.” Ironically, the truths revealed in the Olivet Discourse about being watchful for the end of all seem to entail a consistent living of the Christian life as if the end is never coming. For if we live each day expecting it to be the end, we will fail to be fruitful and consistent in pursuing God's Mission (as the some of the Thessalonians had ceased to be productive, awaiting the end of all things). In another sense it questions the Western notion of retirement, for we may retire from our earthly career but we should never retire from pursuing God's Mission.
5-21-11 passed & we're still here
“Therefore, stay awake, for you do not know on what day your Lord is coming.” (Matt 24:42)
Every generation seems to have a misguided teacher who fails to heed the teachings of Jesus when asked about the end of the Age and fulfillment of His Kingdom. Beginning the Olivet Discourse, Jesus was clear through these five parables that life would continue as normal and believers are to live “responsibly, compassionately, courageously, and expectantly during the Lord's absence...” until “the end” (Howell, 301).