Chuck Smith Jr & Snr

A couple of interesting posts ....

Chuck Smith Jr


Author: Mark Driscoll

Chuck Smith Sr. (79) is the founder and leader of the Calvary Chapel movement ....
Chuck Smith Jr. (55), pastors a church not far from his father's church. Over the years there has been a growing theological rift between the two; it recently spilled over onto page one of the LA Times newspaper. Here's the link to the full story. [,0,2227134.story?page=1&coll=la-home-headlines%3e &coll=la-home-headlines ]

Some of the more pertinent quotes are listed below:

Chuck Smith Jr. on his growing lack of certainty on some biblical issues: "Even when I speak, some of what I say is opinion and confusion and error,' says Smith Jr., 55, who wears shorts and flip-flops as he welcomes a visitor to his church. 'I'm more in a place of learning than I am in a place of certainty.'"

Chuck Smith Jr. speaking of his father: "'He wasn't present emotionally, even if he was present physically. To hear him speak, you just get the impression this is such a warm and intimate person, but the closer you got to him, the more you'd realize he really didn't have those intimacy skills.'"

Chuck Smith Jr. on hell: "For years, Smith Jr. said, he had preached about hell uncomfortably, half-apologetically, because he couldn't understand why a loving God would consign his children to eternal flames. It felt like blackmail for a pastor to threaten people with hell-scapes from the Middle Ages to induce piety. Now, he came to believe that the biblical images used to depict hell's torments such as the 'lake of fire' and the 'worm that does not die' were intended to evoke a feeling rather than a literal place."

Chuck Smith Jr. on the Rapture: "He also grew disillusioned with the Rapture, the notion that believers in Jesus will be whisked to God's side during Armageddon. His father had predicted the end of the world would arrive in the 1980s, based on his reading of the Book of Revelation. He has continued, year after year, to announce its imminence with absolute confidence."

Chuck Smith Jr. on homosexuality: "'I met homosexuals who were trying to live celibate lives or be heterosexual, and I heard all about their struggles, and I never wanted to exacerbate that. My heart went out to them. Listening convinced me that homosexual orientation is not something people chose.'"

A comment on masculinity: "There was also, theology aside, the question of the son's temperament. He hardly fit the mold of the Christian soldier championed by his father in his book 'Harvest,' in which he spoke of 'the ideal of a biblical man who is strong and not vacillating or weak' and denounced 'the new touchy/feely men.' Smith Jr. weeps before his congregation, making no secret of his ongoing battle with depression that took him to the brink of suicide after his 1993 divorce. At the time, he stood before his congregation explaining that his wife of 18 years, the mother of his five children, was leaving him despite his effort to save the marriage."

A comment on pagan syncretism with Christianity: "Fundamentalists have also been troubled in recent years by gestures they see as a throwback to paganism, such as Smith Jr. giving the sign of the cross at services and hanging his sanctuary with paintings of Jesus in the iconic Byzantine style. In 2005, to make matters worse, he took several extended retreats to a Catholic monastery in Big Sur."
For those wanting to hear a reading of Chuck Smith Jr.'s written response it can be found on video at his church's website.


Creationism. Chuck Smith Sr. holds the conservative position of a young earth while Chuck Smith Jr. holds the apparent position of an old earth. ...

Kingdom. .... On this point, Smith Jr. echoes a drum regularly beat by McLaren and others affiliated with the Emergent group. ...

Hell. Again echoing McLaren and the Emergent folks, Smith Jr. says in his response video that he does not believe hell should be used for evangelism and such. ...


Chuck Smith Snr

Chuck Smith taught Jesus would return in 1981

This page documents the predictions from Chuck Smith's own writings.

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In principle, Chuck Smith rejects setting a date for the return of Jesus Christ and he has even condemned other ministers for their date setting. For instance, Chuck Smith said:

So Jesus is saying that no man knows the day, or the hour, only the father. So that anyone who presumes to know the day or the hour is making an unbiblical presumption. But there are many people who try to explain away," this, no man knows the day or the hour," and try to proclaim that they do know the day or the hour. But they fall in that category of false prophets.

This page examines whether Chuck Smith contradicts his own teaching on date setting. By his own words, Chuck Smith is a false prophet since he did name a date.

Are There Speculative End Times Books by Chuck?

Chuck Smith taught that Jesus would return by May of 1981 in a number of his books and messages. When the May prediction failed the date was moved to December 31, 1981. Three of the books are documented here including Future Survival, Snatched Away, and End Times. Quotes from each of these books will be examined as well as their immediate context. ....

Clearly these speculations have proven to be incorrect. However, many prophecy teachers have just changed the 1948 to be 1967 and now get 2000 as the date for the rapture. That's the big fad that we are in now. Smith himself includes the 1967 escape clause (just in case 1981 did not work out) in his book End Times: ....

In more recent times, Chuck Smith has denied that he ever set a date for the return of Jesus Christ.

A caller to the To Every Man An Answer radio program on KWVE, on 12-27-96 asked Chuck Smith a question about date setting and Calvary Chapel.

... at some point there was a prediction of Christ's return via Calvary Chapel - is that real; some years ago? is that; did that happen?

Smith responded with:

No. Uh, never, we all, we do believe he's going to return soon, and, uh, but, and but never any date. No. No. No. Never any date. Because no man knows the day or the hour. I believe he's going to come this next year, but (laughter) you know...


Chuck Smith was out of town Sunday Morning, 22 June 1997. In his place was David Hocking. From the Calvary Chapel of Costa Mesa pulpit on David Hocking admitted that:

I was in a conference in New York with Dave Hunt recently and he said something very provocative about the lack of interest in prophecy. He went back a few years especially in the early days when Calvary Chapel was beginning. How excited we were. Oh, some of the prophecy preachers got a little out of hand and those plagues like Revelation 9 were Vietnam helicopters and you know we sort of started dating things and we were even told that a generation is fourty years, and when Israel became a nation in 1948 it would be fourty years and then the Lord would come. So we back it up seven. So the rapture is coming in 1981. I've met people all over this country who believed that, followed that, anticipated that. It did not come and as a result many of them bombed out, dropped out, copped out; they're not around anymore.


So have we, David, that's why we wrote this page.

What was the response of the church members to 1981 date?

Lot's of people were with Chuck on that final midnight New Year's Eve at the end of 1981 who went home disappointed. Some of our friends were there and they left the faith not long after that. This page is dedicated to our memories of them.

When we first brought up this subject in the newsgroup, the pastors there denied that Chuck had ever named a date. Then when confronted with the proof they backed off and one of them claimed that it was never taught, but was just presented as a marvelous possibility.

Bill Alnors Book

Chuck Smith's failed date setting for the second coming of Christ was also covered in a section of Bill Alnor's book titled Soothsayers of the Second Advent, © 1989, on pages 41-42. ...

Alnor quotes the Future Survival passage where Smith uses equivocal language, where Smith wrote: "I could be wrong, ...", and excludes the unequivocal passages in the other books. This was a private interview between Alnor and Chuck Smith. At last check, the author of the book, Bill Alnor has a Calvary Chapel affiliated Bible Study. Alnor's book paints a soft soap version of reality.

Additionally, Smith would never teach anything as "scriptural dogma". How would one tell when Smith was teaching "scriptural dogma"? This is a distinction that has no difference.

Bottom Line : Chuck Smith blames it on Hal Lindsey ...