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 Post subject: Let Us Consider the RAPTURE Index
PostPosted: Fri Feb 11, 2005 6:26 pm 
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Jon Carroll: 'Let us consider the Rapture Index'
Friday, February 11 @ 09:43:08 EST
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By Jon Carroll, San Francisco Chronicle

Let us consider the Rapture Index. This is a real thing prepared by serious people. If it makes you laugh, you have not gotten the memo. You probably have not read any of the 12 volumes of the "Left Behind" series, the best-selling books in America today.

Those Left Behind are those who did not experience the Rapture, which is an instant in time when all the truly holy people are taken directly to heaven, leaving their clothes in small neat piles behind them. The rest of the ungodly losers are left to deal with natural disasters and wars and the armies of the Antichrist, after which they die in various colorful ways while the ranks of the saved watch with compassion tempered with an understandable sense of satisfaction.

The Rapture Index, as of this writing, stands at 153. Anything over 145 is labeled by the Rapture Actuaries as "Fasten your seat belts." In other words: Repent for the End Is Near. You may see all this for yourself at www.raptureready.com/rap2.html, should you think I'm making it up.



The Rapture Index is based on 45 prophetic categories, things like drought, plague, floods, liberalism, beast government and mark of the beast. "Beast government" is apparently the European Union; the news that the EU is looking for a new president is seen as a sign that the end time is drawing nearer. The latest "mark of the beast" is a plan by the Antichrist that will result in said mark being implanted in the right hand or forehead of unbelievers. The relatively high number of this indicator is explained thusly: "Wal-Mart is falling behind in its plan to bar code all products with radio tags." There are some parts of this belief system I have not yet grasped.

The Rapture is a good thing, and therefore floods, famine, drought and all that are also good things because they portend the coming of end times. Even liberalism is a good thing, because there need to be a lot of Christ- deniers for the end times to come. (Among the prophesied Christ-deniers: the pope. That part is pretty much played down in the pamphlets.)

The end times begin when Russia (also known as the ancient nation of Gog) and Iran join forces to attack Israel. Before this can happen, however, the old temple must be rebuilt. Peace between Israel and the Palestinians is necessary for that to happen, so the Rapture Index sees the peace talks as a good sign. Not as a good as the tsunami, but definitely positive.

I am not the first one to notice this. The environmental Web site www.grist.org has been covering it; Bill Moyers also wrote a column about it (preserved by truthout at www.truthout.org/docs_ 2005/013105F.shtml). Alas, the quote attributed to James Watt, the secretary of the interior under Ronald Reagan ("after the last tree is felled, Christ will come back"), is not verifiable, although it's been reported many times. Probably the liberal media again, taking time out from promoting the homosexual agenda.

So read the Rapture Index. Consider its implications: One of George Bush's core constituencies is actively praying for environmental degradation. Its members are in fact praying for the end of the world, because the end of the world is the beginning of the fun part of salvation.

Let's look at the new budget through this lens, which is (I emphasize) neither fanciful nor satirical. Money for clean water: down. Money for the cleanup of old nuclear sites, including the massive job at the Hanford (Wash.) Nuclear Reservation: way down. Number of Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management acres open for logging: up. Amount of territory in Alaska declared OK for oil drilling: way up.

You might even consider the impact of the Rapture on deficit financing. Who cares how much debt we accrue? Christ will come and forgive it all. Why not borrow against the future to pay for the present? The future is gonna be a whole different deal. We're just placeholders for God's own totalitarian state.

For us secular humanists, us gay-marrying, porn-reading, prayer-mocking harbingers of doom, all this seems incredible. We are still in the reality- based paradigm; we have not yet crossed over into the faith-based paradigm. In the faith-based world, the apparent inconsistencies within the Bush administration fade into nothingness.

Millennial Christians have somehow convinced themselves that the founding fathers would have approved of all this because they were all old-time Christians following that old-time religion. Because Rapture theology was mostly cobbled together in the 19th century based on very selective readings from parts of the New Testament, it is unlikely that the founding fathers believed anything of the sort. Not important: Once again, I'm indulging in reality-based thinking.

Like the prophet said: Fasten your seat belts.

©2005 San Francisco Chronicle

Reprinted from The San Francisco Chronicle:
http://sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?
f=/c/a/2005/02/10/DDGK0B7UVO10.DTL


Catherine

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PostPosted: Sat Feb 12, 2005 4:39 am 
Why don't you mention Catherine that not all christians believe that the rapture will occur this way? But I guess that would go against your whole 'portraying christians in the bad light' thing, huh? You're a teacher right, or a retired one? You obviously think you are intelligent. Show it, Catherine!! Get all your facts straight before you represent them. See all the sides first. I know you hate christians, its obvious from all your posts. Why don't you keep that hate to yourself? It doesnt do anyone else any good to hear it plastered all over your posts! HATE HAS NO PLACE IN THIS WORLD! why dont you understand that?! Slander, prejudice and hate are the worst things I see in people. People like you. People like you make this world a worse place to live...
Come back at me with whatever you want, Catherine. Call me whatever name you want. But I don't play those games. I'm not into preaching hate and slandering others in the name of free speech. You havent responded to any of my other replies, so I dont expect you to relpy to this one either. Why not, Catherine? Where's your superior intellect? Oh, wait...its being used for hate.
So, Catherine, did you retire from teaching(as you said) or did you get fired because everyone saw how hate-filled you really were????
Way to make this world a better place, Catherine...you're doing a great job.
Cheers.


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 12, 2005 7:05 am 
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Quote:
Because Rapture theology was mostly cobbled together in the 19th century based on very selective readings from parts of the New Testament


Well, the writers obviously didn't bother with the teachings of Jesus. That is what gets me the most, how people who call themselves 'Christians' are so able to totally ignore the teachings of Christ.


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 12, 2005 7:51 am 
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Quote:
People like you make this world a worse place to live...
Come back at me with whatever you want, Catherine. Call me whatever name you want. But I don't play those games. I'm not into preaching hate and slandering others in the name of free speech. You havent responded to any of my other replies, so I dont expect you to relpy to this one either. Why not, Catherine? Where's your superior intellect? Oh, wait...its being used for hate.
So, Catherine, did you retire from teaching(as you said) or did you get fired because everyone saw how hate-filled you really were????
Way to make this world a better place, Catherine...you're doing a great job.


You obviously have lots of emotional problems, Lucas. You're getting louder, more strident, and more personal in your angry rhetoric, but that is so typical of a frustrated Christian who can't force his will onto others. :lol:

Dori and I are still waiting for you to answer one simple question before we address anything you have to say about religion:

What is your religious affiliation?

It would also be a good idea for you to read the terms of use rules of TVNL relating to personal attacks. If you have any questions or comments about those rules, I'm sure Jesse, the administrator, will be happy to explain them to you. He's very good at simplifying just about anything for posters who have trouble with comprehension.

But in view of your heightened emotional state, and your childish reaction to being ignored, I will let that part of your shrill rant go...for now. :sleepy4:

Dori, you might be interested in knowing the whole Rapture business was thought up, not by scripture, but by a former Anglican priest named John Nelson Darby.

In the 1840s, he went around England preaching his theory. The act didn't go over big there, the British being as calm and rational as they are,so Darby took it on the road and came to the States, where people ate it up like candy.

Beginning in the seventies, some of the charismatic churches began to recycle Darby's theory, but it wasn't until the millennium that we began to hear this stuff to the extent that we are.

And by the way, many churches are divided over it. The more rational churches do not preach Rapture theory to this day, on the grounds that it is not a scriptural concept, but a man-made one.

Quote:
The doctrine of a secret rapture was first conceived by John Nelson Darby of the Plymouth Brethren in 1827. Darby, known as the father of dispensationalism, invented the doctrine claiming there were not one, but two "second comings." This teaching was immediately challenged as unbiblical by other members of the Brethren. Samuel P. Tregelles, a noted biblical scholar, rejected Darby's new interpretation as the "height of speculative nonsense." So tenuous was Darby's rapture theory that he had lingering doubts about it as late as 1843, and possibly 1845. Another member of the Plymouth Brethren, B.W. Newton, disputed Darby's new doctrine claiming such a conclusion was only possible if one declared certain passages to be "renounced as not properly ours."


Links: http://www.sullivan-county.com/news/cathouse/darby.htm


http://copernicus.subdomain.de/Fundamen ... ristianity


This is my favorite:

Quote:
The whole Second Coming business is as old as the church itself. There were, in fact, three different groups preaching three different versions of the "end times". One is called a-millenialism, "a" meaning "no". There would be no thousand year reign of Christ and all the rest of it, the church is the kingdom of God on earth and the kingdom is here already. See the vatican. This is the Roman Catholic view, or at least it was. Who knows what they teach now?

The second view is called the Post-Tribulation Rapture, which states that the church must go through the whole seven year tribulation period before being whisked off into the sky, there to do an about face and return with Jesus and his crew, who descent from heaven, armed to the teeth and with a homicidal gleam in their eyes.

The third view is the one most people hear about on tv and in church, called the pre-tribulational rapture.

This is the one the article mentions. The church will be whisked away before things get too ugly and the rest of us will be here wallowing in sin and degredation, waiting to be fried. This view has it all: violence, lots of special effects a la hollywood, vengeance and pain. Sort of like Gibson's movie of the Last Day of Jesus, only on a world wide scale. Masochist porn, if you will.

While people sit around fondling themselves and contemplating eternity, those who are of a different brand of Christianity continue to feed the hungry, clothe the naked, visit the sick and on and on and on, just like we always have.


Link: www.smirkingchimp.com post by shonen

What do you think, dori..are the Bushies the "fondling themselves and contemplating eternity" types? :roll:


Catherine

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"Behind every great fortune lies a great crime."
Honore de Balzac

"Democrats work to help people who need help.
That other party, they work for people who don't need help.
That's all there is to it."

~Harry S. Truman


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 13, 2005 3:16 am 
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I love this:

Quote:
While people sit around fondling themselves and contemplating eternity, those who are of a different brand of Christianity continue to feed the hungry, clothe the naked, visit the sick and on and on and on, just like we always have.


Frankly, I don't think Bush Inc cares about anything beyond themselves, money and POWER! Their 'religion' consists of duping as many people as possible and taking everything they can away from the very people Jesus told his followers to care about.

There are 'in words only' Christians, and there are true Christians. None of the nasty ones are of a true nature.


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