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Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Puzzled by Albert McShane!

As I mentioned a few days ago…it was Albert McShane, an older brother from Ireland, who made a statement which first got me thinking “outside of the box” of the traditional interpretation of John 14. In a 1989 Toronto conference Bible reading on John 14, he made a statement that surprised me….Regarding the Lord Jesus, statement, “I go to prepare a place for you”, Mr. McShane commented, “He’s going away by dying for us.”

That one statement stuck in my mind because it was so radically opposed to everything I’d ever heard or believed about John 14 previously!!

However, as I began to study the chapter a few years later and checked out Mr. McShane’s suggestion with the text, it seemed to be entirely in keeping with John 14,15 and 16! I concluded that if His “going away” actually was His going to die on the cross, consistency with the text would demand that His “coming again” would be His coming out of death by resurrection. As I’ve recently shown, this is entirely consistent with the Lord Jesus’ teaching in John14,15 and 16.

So when I found a later article written by Mr. McShane, you can imagine my surprise to learn that, in spite of believing that the Lord’s “going away” was His going to die on the cross, he still believed that His “coming again” was His coming from heaven at the rapture!

In the August 1996 issue of “Truth and Tidings” (a Bible teaching magazine), brother Mc Shane wrote an article, “A Comparison of John and Paul”, in which he wrote the following:
“John… records the Lord's wonderful promise to His own, "I will come again and receive you unto myself' (John 14:3). In this promise we have the "rapture" referred to, for it is not Christ coming down to earth to set up His kingdom, but rather His coming to take His own to the many mansions.”

From a man who stated his belief that the Lord Jesus’ going away (John 14:2 and 3a) was by His death, I cannot for the life of me understand how he could still retain the idea that the rapture (the Lord Jesus’ coming from heaven) was the subject of John 14:3b!

Since brother McShane was promoted to glory in 2002, I cannot contact him to ask him, personally, about his understanding of John 14. So I have been doing some research to try to locate any written or spoken ministry of his relative to John 14. Just this morning I have ordered from the UK two recordings of Bible readings on John 14 which Mr. McShane conducted. So I hope to learn more from those.

If anyone reading this post knows of any writings of his on John 14 or of any other audio recordings of ministry of his on the same chapter, I would very much appreciate hearing from you! You can simply leave a comment below or email me at

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