Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Christian Rapture Madness

With war erupting between Israel and terrorists in lebanon, many christian groups are talking about the rapture or "end times".

The valley of "Armageddon" possibly referring to the "Jezreel Valley" of northern Israel lies south and east of Haifa, an Israeli city which is in the news as a target of terrorist Katyusha soviet designed rockets. Christians believe a great battle will take place here at a time of "wars and rumors of wars". Some Christian attitudes seem to actually relish the prospect of war, killing and violence at the time of what they believe will be the second coming of a risen Jesus Christ.

This out-cry of a pending "rapture" is often accompanied with cognitive dissonance by the claim, from the christian bible book of Matthew chapter 24 verse 36, "But of that day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of heaven...". To yearn for the end times of war and violence seems in every reasonable way to be wholly inappropriate behavior for a human being especially one with a claim to christian beliefs. If there is a soul, if there is a God, surely Christians will meet their maker when they die, which may very well be much sooner than the arrival of a Messiah, if any exists. One would expect thoughtful selfless lovers of their fellow beings as christians claim to be, to pray for peace, to yearn for peace, to work for peaceful solutions.

Every thinking man should consider that faith-based understandings are no guarantee. Our higher level reasoning and critical thinking skills have evolved so that we can rely on our knowledge and understanding to make well judged decisions. Some parts of the brain are very good at "following the leader" and blindly obeying. Religious movements like radical islam are really just mind controlling cults where massive amounts of under-informed under-educated people are brainwashed into believing things that aren't true. Longing for the end of the world only combats ignorance with ignorance.

Maybe there is no savior. Maybe we are in charge of our own destiny and must work out our own salvation and peace. If this is so, then yearning for a catastrophic end to the world is a deeply pernicious belief system. I know some religious people don't recycle or reduce their energy consumption because "it will all end"..."jesus will fix it".

Even if there is a higher being that will emerge from the unseen spiritual realms to set foot on a battle field and settle the differences of Arabs, Jews, Christians and every other warring faction, especially in this case as in any other, we will be accountable for our actions. Whether or not there is a God, or a messiah, "longing for the end" is not an acceptable way to proceed for the world. It is entirely senseless even from a christian point of view.

1 comment:

Stuart Rowland, a bondservant of Jesus Christ said...

Very wise post. But....
"Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools...."
With the hundreds of prophecies found in the Bible, each of which has been fulfilled in EXACTING ways of dates, times, persons and such, a person would have to be blind not to see that Jesus is the Son of God, and that He is returning very soon. But, until He does, those of us the follow Him will continue to do our best to make life bearable for others. We will help the needy, we will comfort and assist where we can. But, make no mistake, we won't be here too much longer.