L.B.: There’s a New World Coming

Before Left Behind, before LaHaye and Jenkins, there was Hal Lindsey.

Lindsey wrote some of the best-selling books of the 1970s — titles like There's a New World Coming, The Late Great Planet Earth and The 1980s: Countdown to Armageddon.

That last title, understandably, has been out of print for about 13 years.

Lindsey didn't write novels — although I don't think his books qualify as "nonfiction" either. But he had as much influence and popularity in his day as LaHaye and Jenkins enjoy now. (His publishers, hoping to reclaim some of that former glory from his literary heirs, have redesigned his books so that the covers of the new editions look like the covers of the Left Behind series.)

To really understand the popular strain of premillennial dispensationalism that L&J are exploiting, you need to read Hal Lindsey.

Fortunately, that won't require you to spend a great deal of time or money, because the Spire Comics adaptation of There's a New World Coming can be found online (warning: very large .pdf file).

Go. Read. Enjoy. Marvel at passages like this:

Well, we've read the book of Revelation — and here are today's headlines — it all fits together perfectly!!!

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  • Chris

    Ah yes. I remember my first acquiantance with the idea of the Rapture was in high school when I stumble across Lindsey’s book entitled (with stellar imagination) “The Rapture.” Another of his interpretative works, though not a best seller. I found it fasinating, not the least of its charms was that I was supposed to be working at the time.
    I remembered thinking even then, “Where the hell in Revelation is this?” After reading through Revelations, I was still missing it. Plus I thought it was odd that the God who had his Son crucified, most of the Apostles martyred, and the Israelites flogged repeatedly would spare us from the FINAL SHOW.
    Such advanced eschatology never seems to have occurred to Lindsey or L&J.

  • Rafe

    I remember Hal Lindsey’s books well from my youth. I can remember either overhearing or perhaps participating in a deep discussion of whether or not the toes of some clay-footed statue represented the countries that had joined the European Community.

  • Phil

    Wow,I haven’t heard about Hal Lindsey in ages and was unaware that his stuff was being re-packaged to tie it in with “Left Behind”.
    This is a bit ironic since I remember his books in the 70’s and 80’s having nearly identical covers as the Eric Van Danekan’s “Chariots of the
    Gods” series.

  • E. Thorp

    I remember reading The Late Great Planet Earth in a Methodist Sunday School class in Ohio around 1982. I was in 9th grade, and what stuck with me–really the only thing I remember about the book, so I hope I’ve got it right–was that the rapture was scheduled for “one generation after Israel becomes a nation again.” Counting a generation as 40 years (as Lindsey or my Sunday School teacher told us to do), that meant 1988…a mere SIX YEARS in which to get my act together and get right with the Lord lest I be left behind. I was sincerely nervous and tried, none too successfully, to set my path aright.
    I leave high school, I enter college. 1988 comes and goes with no discernible rapture. My first reaction–I suspect I’m not alone in this–was something like Geez, what a naive kid I was, obviously there was nothing to that timetable. (Lindsey published another book in 1989; revised schedule, no doubt.) A year or two later, though, it occurred to me: the rapture is a bodily taking-up of the righteous, right? Well, maybe it DID occur in 1988…and NOBODY QUALIFIED! We’re all living in the beast’s world and don’t even know it.
    Hey, wasn’t there a presidential election in 1988? Who won? Beast’s world, indeed. Nowadays we’re stuck with, I dunno, Beastie Boy.

  • emjaybee

    Wow, thanks for that link! Love the hot seventies chick in her bellbottoms—I think I owned that comic at one time, it looks very familiar.
    Hey, has anyone ever seen a pamphlet, done in two-color (red and black I think) called “What the Devil’s Wrong With Rock n’ Roll”? I used to have that too, and I would really like to find it again…I remember it told me why 10cc, Black Sabbath, and Kenny Rogers (no, really) were all Satanic.

  • kodi

    I thought it was hard being a Christian now—
    It’s really going to be rough then!!!

  • Fred

    That sounds like maybe a Jack Chick production. I couldn’t find that one, but this looks similar:

  • zenjohn

    “What’s going on?” “The Great Snatch… The revelation!”
    Huh huh..huh… He said ‘snatch.’

  • zenjohn

    Reading this Hal Lyndsey crap. “Christ is the unfathomable source that keeps every atom from literally exploding!!!” Yeah, but what’s to keep my head from exploding when I read lines like that? I was brought up in a fundamentalist Christian religion, but that has to be the most retarded thing I’ve ever heard.

  • TR

    Ha ha ha! Notice how all the Christians are white and Aryan-looking. And the women are all gorgeous. I could make a lot of comments about that, but it’s not necessary.

  • GLY

    Referring to zenjohn’s last post, I clearly see that we live in the Devil’s world. Blinded from the truth, I’ll pray for you and those who are also blinded. You must be one who is filled with anger, pride, and wine as these are the three things that can destroy a person. Please know what is constant: The Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. I stumbled across this site not knowing anything about it, except to read what I’ve read. I’m only an individual whose participated in the things that can destroy a man. My commitment, sincerity, and hard work will better me. To be blessed by the Lord our savior is what I ask of the Lord to do for you so that you may see the truth. Because we are sinners alike, I need the Lord and the hope He provides to survive in this world. I’m thankful that I could have this opportunity to share my thoughts. Please give the Lord all your cares for He will see you through.

  • Sophist

    I like how the blond kid recognizes John the Apostle on sight. From behind. Because every christian who’s worth his salt knows what John’s left ear looks like, right?
    Oh, and GLY? I thought you only had to let Jesus into your heart to be saved. I never realized you had to let him into the strong nuclear force as well. I guess that must be in one of those verses in the back of the bible that you never hear about.

  • Scott

    I like how the blond kid recognizes John the Apostle on sight. From behind.
    Maybe saints have their names on their backs like the other people we Godly Worship – pro athletes.

  • Soundacious

    Say what you will about Hal Lindsey: Barney Miller was a hilarious show.

  • ihavenomouth

    I can’t believe no one quoted where it lists the scripture: “And there appeared a woman- she brought forth a male child…” and it has woman meaning Israel and child meaning Christ.
    Because of course the rest of this stuff with the seas turning to blood and poisoned water is all literal, but woman definitely means Israel. Definitely.
    Also, nothing beats the “article” talking about freak weather with -officials- saying it’s caused by “capricious jet streams.” I’m sure scientists came up with that phrase.

  • Ryan Ferneau

    Heheh, here’s a site making fun of that comic book: http://www.progressiveboink.com/archive/newworld/01.html

  • LuzzleAnne

    This is a year or so from the last comment, but if you’re interested in another sendup of these comics this site has a good one:
    I just found these archives–good work!