John Hagee Surrenders to Catholic League

John Hagee has surrendered to Bill Donohue’s Catholic League. Donohue comments, and posts Hagee’s letter. One of the things to which Donohue objected was Hagee’s repetition of the historical Protestant identification of the Catholic Church with the whore of Babylon in the Book of Revelation. You can find this identification, and the reasons for it, in all the major confessions of the Reformation period. It is rooted in a particular view of Biblical prophecy, the historicist school that sees Biblical apocalyptic as unfolding through history. Hagee lets Donohue know that though he used that “rhetorical device,” he rejects the hermeneutic on which it is based. Instead, Hagee reminds us, he is a futurist. He thinks the prophecy points to something completely in the future. The “whore of Babylon” in Revelation can only refer, he says, to the chuch that exists after the “rapture.” This is a reference to a 19th century novel theory, accepted by many fundamentalists and popularized by folks like Hagee and Tim Lahaye, that the second coming of Christ will be an invisible snatching of true Christians from the earth.