Dispensational Publishing House, Inc. © 2016. Used with permission.
Dr. Ed Hindson and Dr. Thomas Ice opened the 25th Anniversary Pre-Trib Study Group meetings on Monday morning by remembering the conference’s originator—the late Dr. Tim LaHaye, who went to be with the Lord on July 25, 2016, at the age of 90.
Dr. Hindson referred to Joshua 4:1-9:
And it came to pass, when all the people had completely crossed over the Jordan, that the Lord spoke to Joshua, saying: “Take for yourselves twelve men from the people, one man from every tribe, and command them, saying, ‘Take for yourselves twelve stones from here, out of the midst of the Jordan, from the place where the priests’ feet stood firm. You shall carry them over with you and leave them in the lodging place where you lodge tonight.’”
Then Joshua called the twelve men whom he had appointed from the children of Israel, one man from every tribe; and Joshua said to them: “Cross over before the ark of the Lord your God into the midst of the Jordan, and each one of you take up a stone on his shoulder, according to the number of the tribes of the children of Israel, that this may be a sign among you when your children ask in time to come, saying, ‘What do these stones mean to you?’ Then you shall answer them that the waters of the Jordan were cut off before the ark of the covenant of the Lord; when it crossed over the Jordan, the waters of the Jordan were cut off. And these stones shall be for a memorial to the children of Israel forever.”
And the children of Israel did so, just as Joshua commanded, and took up twelve stones from the midst of the Jordan, as the Lord had spoken to Joshua, according to the number of the tribes of the children of Israel, and carried them over with them to the place where they lodged, and laid them down there. Then Joshua set up twelve stones in the midst of the Jordan, in the place where the feet of the priests who bore the ark of the covenant stood; and they are there to this day.
“The Bible is filled with memorializing significant things,” said Hindson. “For us, this 25th anniversary is that kind of a memorial—a time to remember Dr. LaHaye’s vision and the impact that has come out of that. Dr. Ice has worked right alongside him all these years to carry that vision on. I would remind us that Tim would be most pleased to know that others are carrying on that vision until the trumpet sounds.”
Hindson called on conference attendees to “focus (their) hearts and minds not only on what is coming in the future, but Who is coming in the future.”
“Unfortunately, we see a decline in American evangelicalism in believeing in pretribulationalism, but it is still widely believed if you preach it,” stated Ice. He called for younger people, especially, to come and learn more.
“We have seen a number of younger people who have come and been turned on and become champions and spokesmen,” he said.
Dr. LaHaye was memorialized at the banquet on Monday evening, when photos and a video that were displayed at LaHaye’s funeral were presented before a packed crowd.
Most of the discussion about LaHaye, however, was directed positively toward those in the audience.
“You have the privilege of being part of an organization founded by one of the greatest Christian leaders of our time,” Hindson told them. “These are amazing days.”
Beverly LaHaye came to the platform to receive a United States flag that was flown over the Texas Capitol in Tim LaHaye’s honor.
“I hope he’s watching,” she said, expressing how much LaHaye enjoyed coming to the conference each December to be reunited with friends.
The first two days of this conference have been so full that this is all I have finished chronicling so far. Needless to say, these meetings provide an opportunity to feast on a rich spiritual and prophetic diet and to connect with the leading pretribulational pastors, professors, scholars and ministry leaders from across the country.
I will describe the conference further in the next installment.