Waiting for Armageddon

Is it any wonder why we think religion causes suffering in the world? Check this out:
The Evangelical community is convinced that the worlds future is foretold in Biblical prophecy - from the Rapture to the Battle of Armageddon. This astonishing documentary explores their world - in their homes, at conferences, and on a wide-ranging tour of Israel. By interweaving Christian, Zionist, Jewish and critical perspectives along with telling archival materials, the filmmakers probe the politically powerful - and potentially explosive - alliance between Evangelical Christians and Israelan alliance that may set the stage for what one prominent Evangelical leader calls World War III.


Atheist Media Blog.


John said...

Even Gary North called out these people as fanatics trying to usher in the end of the world (which is why we don't want them in high public office).

"This specific motivation for the support of Israel is never preached from any fundamentalist pulpit. The faithful hear sermons – many, many sermons – on the pretribulation Rapture. On other occasions, they hear sermons on the Great Tribulation. But they do not hear the two themes put together: "We can avoid death, but only because two-thirds of the Jews of Israel will inevitably die in a future holocaust. America must therefore support the nation of Israel in order to keep the Israelis alive until after the Rapture.' Fundamentalist ministers expect their congregations to put two and two together on their own. It would be politically incorrect to add up these figures in public."

Ginx said...

From Israel to the environment, so many America policies are driven by the fatalist mentality of the Bible. Sad.

Mark Plus said...

Although Gary North strikes me as a wide-spectrum crank, with his combined advocacy of Christian Reconstructionism and Austrian economics, occasionally he writes something sensible. For example, North points to the socio-economic component of christian doomsday fantasies. The "end time" beliefs associated with christian fundamentalism, according to North, appeal strongly to people with a lower class outlook or "radical present-orientation" -- namely, the kinds of people who buy lottery tickets, mindlessly make babies they can't support, get payday loans from check cashing businesses, etc. "A person who has no faith in the long-term earthly future of his legacy is unlike [sic] to save, work long hours to build a business, advance his education, or do anything else that involves long-term sacrifice, other than foreign missions."

Lower class people don't necessarily earn low incomes, however. I've seen a lot of stories lately about high income people, ones earning $100,000 a year or more, who can't make ends meet. These people also act lower class in the way they handle their money. So it wouldn't surprise me if we see some high income rapture believers with little savings or low net worth sitting in the pews of fundamentalist churches.

Ken Pulliam, Ph.D. said...

Very interesting. People are fascinated with predicting the future. There is a lot of money to be made by evangelists, preachers and others who have charts and diagrams to explain all the end time events.

What is really scary though is when you have someone like GW Bush in the White House who believes all this nonsense.

Mark Plus said...

North also points out that the "Left Behind" franchise, probably the most successful mechanism in our lifetimes for spreading this end-times propaganda, ironically reinforces the fundamentalists' self-image as socially marginal, well, losers, not to mince words about it. After millions of christians mysteriously disappear, society continues to function, showing that these believers didn't possess valuable skills we would miss right away. (Kind of the reverse of the men of the mind's strike in Atlas Shrugged, in other words.)

Again, if you believe you'll fly off in the rapture at any moment, why bother getting an education, building a business, saving and investing your money or otherwise planning for a secular future you don't expect to see even if the actuarial tables continue to beat out rapture forecasts, generation after generation?

Patrick said...

It's simply dishonest to imply all evangelical christians believe in what you have written above, John. And you know it.

John W. Loftus said...

Patrick, I linked to some other site. Did you read it? No, not all evangelicals think this, but since there was a discrepancy about whether 50 million or 30 million evangelicals believed this I didn't quote the statistics.


Mark Plus said...

A Pew poll indicates that 20 percent of American christians believes that Jesus will return in their lifetimes. If we have about 200 million adult christians in the U.S., that works out to 40 million adults, or more than the population of California, who adhere to this fantasy. According to Gary North, we probably won't find many competent, successful people in this subculture.

BTW, did anyone catch the "American Dad" episode about the rapture?