"laestadian, apostolic, gay, lgbtq, ex-oalc, ex-llc, llc, oalc, bunner" LEARNING TO LIVE FREE: Pre-millenial Dispensationalism and Laestadianism

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Pre-millenial Dispensationalism and Laestadianism

Every once in awhile someone will copy and paste a long-winded post to the XLLL Discussion group regarding the "end times", "rapture," or some other rambling of the Left Behind sort that is commonly associated with pre-millenial dispensationalism.

This makes me wonder: what was Laestadius' view? On the one hand, Lutheranisms of most sorts are typically a-millenial in their eschatological outlook. On the other hand, pietism and dispensationalism often go together.

Growing up in a part of the Apostolic Lutheran Church of America (ALC) that was more heavily influenced by evangelicalism, I knew many folks who believed that the rapture was imminent. I grew up reading books like Hal Lindsey's Late Great Planet Earth and Paul Meier's The Third Millennium. It was interesting to live through the Y2K scare, when religious and secular fears about the future seemed to merge into one.

For me, leaving Laestadianism meant leaving rapture/end times theology behind. I could easily see how it could be the opposite for others, however.

What's your story? Has leaving Laestadianism affected how you believe about "the end of all things?"

If all these "isms" are making your head spin, I recommend this short article by Michael White: Christian Millenial Expectation Through the Centuries. He does a good job of showing just how much Christian thought on this topic has evolved over the ages, as well as describe some of the main schools of thought in relatively few words.



  1. When I left the Apostolic experience, I discovered the intellectual honesty of atheism. Therefore my thoughts on the possible end of things has changed.

    A comet or meteor. An influenza variant. A massive solar flare. All of which are plausible, unlike the notion that Jesus will return bathed in the light of his own glory.

    I've never really understood how someone could leave Laestadianism behind just to pick up with some other, equally ridiculous, set of superstitions.

  2. I empathize with you, Mr. H., but suspect that no Christian envisions Jesus like an atheist does.

  3. So true. I suspect that no Christian envisions Mohammed like a Muslim does. It may also be true that no Buddhist envisions Shiva the Destroyer the way a Hindu does.

    I don't particularly see the point of rejecting the fairy tales of Laestadianism simply to adopt different fairy tales, which was my original point.

    Most anybody who sufficiently studies the history of religion, christianity in particular, will eventually find the truth... Religion is a construct of the fertile imagination of man, kept alive by the collective herd mentality.

    All of which tends to put the "Rapture" into perspective.

  4. I think I read somewhere on this site that some OALCers consider Lastadius to be one of the angels mentioned in the book of Revelation.

    If anyone can provide more details about this, I'd be interested in hearing them. Was this something Lastadius claimed himself, or is this something some of his followers claimed for him after his death?

  5. Tomte,
    I remember reading a post that said that some Laestadian churches believed that he was the seventh angel in Revelations.

    I spent many years in the OALC, but I never heard that preached. I believe that idea must have come from an Elder or preacher . I don't believe Laestadius ever claimed such prominence.

  6. Wow, thanks Tomte!
    I guess it just took a couple days for me without the extoots site to find out how much of an addict I truly am.
    Glad to know it's here, just relabeled!

  7. Why did it get relabled? Did you announce that the name changed? I only found out because I went to the lefttheoalc site? Just wondering.