For many months now I have been following a guy on Youtube who calls himself “Servus Christi”. His real name is Joshua Chavez.
A great many of the Servus Christi videos focus on exposing heresy among NAR leaders, and the hypocrisy of many Christian leaders who say the biblical thing, and then chum around with wild heretics. Franklin Graham and Jack Hibbs are two examples of this type of error, which he has exposed. Up until recently I have been in complete agreement with what he has been doing! In going after these groups and exposing evangelical hypocrisy, he is following the Lord’s, and the Apostles’ examples!
I was troubled a few months ago, however, when he did a video saying that a born-again, saved person, can lose their salvation! This error is common among some Charismatics, and I wrote a letter to him on his blog, biblically showing him his error, but I never heard back from him.
I left it at that, and hoped that he had read my letter, until on the 9th of December, 2020, he did a video called “The Rapture Deception”.
With a title like that I knew I had to watch it, but really didn’t want to, because I thought the title told me everything I needed to know.
Well, I watched it over a couple of sittings, and while I disagree with his general thesis, I must say he has come upon some of the very same problems I had, when I began studying biblical End Times Prophecies. While these problems do exist, there is always a biblical way of harmonizing the Scriptures without throwing out the baby with the bath water!
Among his first errors is the statement that “Dispensationalism is a new thing, dating back no farther than 200 years”. There is a book which I have in my collection, called “Dispensationalism Before Darby“, which documents dispensationalism back to the early years of Christianity. To be sure, the Roman Catholic Church attempted to stamp out this doctrine, by persecuting and killing its adherents, but it keeps on popping-up every century or so, and has done so for a very long time. To be sure, many ancient Dispensationalists had a slightly different understanding than we do today, but they did have many common elements with us! This error of Servus Christi is an error of ignorance!
Nobody knows everything about the bible’s End Times prophecies, including Darby, or Scofield. The Lord included everything we need in the Scriptures, even with regard to this subject, but he has been gradually opening eyes over the centuries, as the time of the End of the Age draws closer. As we approach the End of the Age, the biblical End Times picture is becoming clearer, but it is a process, and it is not over yet!
At the time of the Apostles, their task was to build the Christian Church, and to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ to the whole world. This was their focus, and not the End Times prophecies. They knew enough for their generation, but they didn’t know everything. I doubt that even the Apostles themselves understood everything about all that they themselves had written, unless they were told to “keep quiet and focus on the Gospel”. That seems to be Daniel’s situation, and it may have been John’s and Paul’s as well.
Still I have found that there is much more in the Word of God than most Christians, and even Dispensationalists understand! The truth is that we won’t find it if we don’t look for it!
One thing that struck me about Chavez’ video is that he never once addressed God’s plan for, and promises to, the nation of Israel! While he addressed several New Testament passages, he never once addressed the books of the Old Testament! The book of Revelation itself has over 500 references to the Old Testament. Chavez frequently refers to Revelation but never goes to the Old Testament! Not even once! This is a huge problem, and explains the root of his error! God has a plan for the nation of Israel, and the seven year Great Tribulation has been spoken of as the time of Israel’s restoration, since Moses wrote Deuteronomy chapter 4! I wrote about this in my last post, but let’s take a quick look at it again;
25 When thou shalt beget children, and children’s children, and ye shall have remained long in the land, and shall corrupt yourselves, and make a graven image, or the likeness of any thing, and shall do evil in the sight of the Lord thy God, to provoke him to anger:
26 I call heaven and earth to witness against you this day, that ye shall soon utterly perish from off the land whereunto ye go over Jordan to possess it; ye shall not prolong your days upon it, but shall utterly be destroyed.
27 And the Lord shall scatter you among the nations, and ye shall be left few in number among the heathen, whither the Lord shall lead you.
28 And there ye shall serve gods, the work of men’s hands, wood and stone, which neither see, nor hear, nor eat, nor smell.
29 But if from thence thou shalt seek the Lord thy God, thou shalt find him, if thou seek him with all thy heart and with all thy soul.
30 When thou art in tribulation, and all these things are come upon thee, even in the latter days, if thou turn to the Lord thy God, and shalt be obedient unto his voice;
31 (For the Lord thy God is a merciful God;) he will not forsake thee, neither destroy thee, nor forget the covenant of thy fathers which he sware unto them.
Moses foretold of the apostasy, and scattering of Israel, and of the rejection of their Messiah. He also told them, and us, that the Tribulation they would go through was for the purpose of restoring Israel! You see that God, who told Israel all these things had a plan for their restoration even as He was telling them of their judgment and dispersion in the nations of the world!
Notice in verses 29-31, the phrase, “when thou art in tribulation”? While “tribulation” simply means “trouble” and Israel has been through many tribulations over the millennia, the qualifying phrase shows us the time frame of the fulfillment of this prophecy “even in the latter days”. This is the same time frame that is mentioned in the book of Daniel, commonly referred to as “Daniel’s seventieth week”. It is also referred to as “the time of Jacob’s trouble” in Jeremiah 30;
7 Alas! for that day is great, so that none is like it: it is even the time of Jacob’s trouble; but he shall be saved out of it.
The “time of Jacob’s Trouble” was not the 70AD destruction of Jerusalem and the dispersion of the survivors. That was merely the fulfillment of Deuteronomy 4:27! Neither was Adolf Hitler’s Holocaust the time of Jacob’s Trouble! It was merely another pogrom! No! The Time of Jacob’s Trouble will be much worse than WW2! It will even be worse than the Gog and Magog war, of Ezekiel 38-39! It will be the worst time this planet has ever had!
Notice that it is the “time of Jacob’s trouble” and not “the time of the Church’s trouble”! The focus of the Tribulation period is on Israel. On the descendants of Jacob!
Israel was called by God to be His missionary nation to the world. They failed in this endeavour, and while they did send a few missionaries to a handful of places, they really weren’t concerned about the plight of the Gentiles. Jonah’s attitude is typical of the attitude of the Jews towards the Gentiles, although he was one of the few who actually went to a Gentile nation!
This will change during the Great Tribulation!
Read this End Times prophecy from Isaiah 26:
17 Like as a woman with child, that draweth near the time of her delivery, is in pain, and crieth out in her pangs; so have we been in thy sight, O Lord.
18 We have been with child, we have been in pain, we have as it were brought forth wind; we have not wrought any deliverance in the earth; neither have the inhabitants of the world fallen.
19 Thy dead men shall live, together with my dead body shall they arise. Awake and sing, ye that dwell in dust: for thy dew is as the dew of herbs, and the earth shall cast out the dead.
20 Come, my people, enter thou into thy chambers, and shut thy doors about thee: hide thyself as it were for a little moment, until the indignation be overpast.
21 For, behold, the Lord cometh out of his place to punish the inhabitants of the earth for their iniquity: the earth also shall disclose her blood, and shall no more cover her slain.
Notice the beginning statement “Like as a woman with child, that draweth near the time of her delivery”. This reference to a pregnant woman in labour pains, is always a reference to the End Times. This kind of reference is found in almost all of the OT prophecies concerning the Great Tribulation.
Notice the phrase in verse 18 “we have as it were brought forth wind; we have not wrought any deliverance in the earth”. This simply means that they have been wasting their time, and have not brought the gospel to the nations! The 144,000 Jewish evangelists of Revelation 7 and 14 have 3 1/2 years to make-up for Israel’s failure to evangelize the nations! (At the mid-point of the Tribulation they will be raptured directly to Heaven!)
All the saved Gentiles of the Tribulation Period are “jewels in Israel’s crown”! Israel will finally become God’s missionary nation! This is a testament to the love and mercy of God, that he will still be merciful to Israel after some 2,700 years of apostasy! He will still keep His promises to Israel after 2,700 years of rebellion!
Josh Chavez says that there is no place in Scripture where the Rapture is spelled out exactly as the Dispensationalists teach it; the resurrection of the saints, the rapture, and then the Great Tribulation, but we have this exact sequence in Isaiah 26:19-21. It also tells us that the Old Testament saints will also be resurrected at the same time as the Church-Age saints, for Isaiah himself looks forward to his own resurrection at this time!
So, verse 19 speaks of the resurrection of the saints, OT and Church-Age together. Verse 20 is the Rapture of the living believers to their “chambers” spoken of by Jesus in John 14:2 as “mansions”, and the “little moment” is the 7 year Tribulation. Verse 21 is the 7 year Tribulation, where the wrath of God is poured out on unbelieving mankind!
Zephaniah 2:1-3 covers the same time period;
1 Gather yourselves together, yea, gather together, O nation not desired;
2 Before the decree bring forth, before the day pass as the chaff, before the fierce anger of the Lord come upon you, before the day of the Lord’s anger come upon you.
3 Seek ye the Lord, all ye meek of the earth, which have wrought his judgment; seek righteousness, seek meekness: it may be ye shall be hid in the day of the Lord’s anger.
The Greek word for Church is “Ekklesia” which means a called-out assembly. When Gentiles are saved they instantly join the Church of Jesus Christ; they are “called-out” of the nation they were born in. It is the same for Jewish believers; when a Jew gets saved they are called-out of Israel, and are a part of the Church of Jesus Christ! As Christians our citizenship is in Heaven and not in any nation on this earth!
Therefore, in verse 1, the “nation not desired” is 100% made up of unbelieving Israelites! There may be a few believers living geographically among them, but God no longer considers them a part of the nation! They are His Bride!
So where are they not desired? They are not desired in Heaven, in their state of unbelief! They can’t come to Heaven with their sin still clinging to them! Rather, they are being called back to the Land of Israel, because God will deal with them there! Like a defective product, they are called back to the place of manufacture, so they can be repaired! Verse 2 tells us that they will all return to the land of Israel BEFORE the beginning of the Great Tribulation, the time of Jacob’s trouble!
It thus follows, logically, that if you are reading a passage which speaks of Israel’s re-gathering to the land, regardless of which book it is in, it is a pre-Tribulation passage! Keep this God-given rule in mind when reading prophetic Scriptures!
Verse 3 is another reference to the Rapture! Not every Church member will be raptured, but only those who have been born-again by the Spirit of God, and washed in the blood of the Lamb! This is why it says “it may be ye shall be hid in the day of the Lord’s anger.” There is a Harlot Church that will see very few members, if any, Raptured! The “meek of the earth” here are the Church, and their hiding is not on the earth, but is in their mansions/dwelling places in Heaven, the same place mentioned in Isaiah 26:20, and John 14:2!
It certainly is not guaranteed that every “Church Member” will be Raptured, but only those who are born-again! Don’t think that by saying the “sinner’s prayer” or getting baptized will guarantee a place in Heaven, you must believe all that the Scriptures say about Jesus, and you must be trusting Him to save you! Do you believe some of what the Scriptures say? Then keep reading and keep on believing! Do you dislike some of what it says about Jesus? Believe it anyway! The entire bible, from Genesis to Revelation, was inspired by the same God, who never changes!
By skipping so much in the Old Testament, Josh Chavez has missed the whole reason for the Tribulation, and the Rapture!
Joshua Chavez has made several other serious errors, which can lead his viewers into serious error, and I won’t leave this alone, but I will leave the rest for next time.