Wednesday, April 13, 2005

Left Behind

I am really rather looking forward to being "left behind". The thoughts of spending any kind of eternity with these Rapture People is enough to make you sweat out the Hereafter.

Apparently Mr. Tim Lahaye (not to be confused with Mr. Tom DeLay) has made a career of writing third rate novels about the Rapture and what all of us mortals have to look forward to if we do not get on board the Jesus Train. Personally I think it is all gobbledygook. The thought of being carried naked into the heavens just does not thrill me, nor do I believe, for one minute, that it will happen.

However, the religious right has taken these Lahaye books to be almost gospel...well at least a loose translation of the Book of Revelation, and those who buy into the theme of them, people like Tommy Thompson, John Ashcroft, Oliver North and last but not least George W. Bush, make it scarier. They fully buy into the premises that Mr. Lahaye has put forth: global war, Israel under attack, Baghdad being the seat of Satans' power (although previously it was Moscow), and they use the content to validate their views. They even have a web site devoted to what they call the Project For A New American Century.

It seems incredible to me that a small group (no more than 20%) form this apocalyptic Christian segment of the population that has had such a major impact on this country and the direction in which it is heading. They may be looking towards the heavens but the rest of us are looking into the jaws of insanity. People who could have stepped out of one of Lahaye's novels are being appointed or positioned to be leaders, judges, players on the world stage which Bush has envisioned as a precursor to the End Times.

  • There is no need to be good stewards of the Earth, as we will not need it when God destroys it.
  • There is no need to help Israel and Palestine secure a good and lasting peace when it is an Israel under siege which will foretell the Apocalypse.
  • We can flout international law as it means nothing when set beside "God's Law" (the Ten Commandments?).
  • We can isolate a whole segment of society based on their life partner choices.
  • We can watch a disease like AIDS devastate a culture because it is "God's Will".
  • We can turn away from those less fortunate and our children, two segments of the population which Jesus favored.

The Bible is an amazing piece of literature. The problem with it is that it can be interpreted in thousands of ways. Even those who have made it a life long study cannot agree on what the right interpretation should be. There are things written down in the Bible which did not actually, historically occur. Matthew, Mark, Luke and John all put a different spin on their "first person" accounts of Jesus' life.

Having read what was written about Jesus, I think I can say this, however, that the only ones I can see Him leaving behind are those who think the rest of us will be.