NRA: Suspending suspense

Soul Harvest

This stock scene is familiar — we already know how it’s supposed to go and where we’re supposed to feel the beats of suspense. That lets readers connect the dots, volunteering the emotional response it seems Jerry Jenkins was trying to elicit. But while we’re still the ones who have to connect those dots, Jenkins has, for once, supplied just enough of them for us to be able to make those connections. So compared to most of what we’re reading in these books, this section is relatively successful. Relatively. [Read more...]

NRA: When I get to the border

How do you say "Pie in the sky when you die" in Hebrew?

So, then, it’s two-on-two. A fair fight. This escape across the border bit is, after all, a stock set-piece from action movies, and in a substantial percentage of those movies, the scene ends with the two guards tied up, wearing only their underwear, while the heroes escape wearing their uniforms. [Read more...]

NRA: An irritating adventure

This is what The Future looked like when viewed from 1997.

Once you have confirmed that you are, in fact, trapped in the nightmare of a Tim LaHaye novel, you don’t require a vast theological library to help you navigate what little remains of your future. All you need is one of LaHaye’s books or booklets. Just the Big Chart and checklist would be enough, really. That would provide more than any other “scholarship” or “research” could tell you. Anything else would be irrelevant. [Read more...]

Are you ready (to buy a T-shirt)?


See, here’s the plan: you put on your spiffy new Left Behind T-shirt and matching baseball cap with the lofted embroidery and everyone will see that question, “Are You Ready?” and be intrigued. They’ll come up to you — friends, relatives, neighbors, strangers on the bus, all the popular kids at your school — and they’ll ask you, “Ready for what?” And then you can share the gospel with them. [Read more...]

NRA: The only thing worse than the Antichrist


Tim LaHaye’s End Times scheme is entirely dependent on his replacement theology. In LaHaye’s scheme, Jews are damned and deserve only damnation unless they say the magic prayer and convert to real, true Christianity. The character of Tsion Ben-Judah is the personification of this theology, but it’s not just Tsion and it’s not just the awkward plotting and incoherent world-building of Jenkins’ border-crossing set piece. It’s everywhere in these books. [Read more...]

Let’s all watch the trailer for the new ‘Left Behind’ movie


Let’s all watch the new trailer for the “Left Behind” reboot. Oh, and also too, let’s plan on getting back to poor Buck and Tsion in the magic school bus and resuming our journey through the neverending story of the Last Days. [Read more...]

‘Apocalyptabuse’ and funny stories about death


Rapture ideology, I believe, is a product of anxiety about death. It’s a way of coping with the fear of death by denying its inevitability, inventing a way that some special few of us will get to escape it. [Read more...]

There’s a Tim LaHaye reader born every minute


This is Tim LaHaye’s umpteenth book of charts, graphs, timelines and checklists in which he purports to help readers of Revelation decipher the impenetrable mystery of what that book might possibly mean when its speaks cryptically of “the great city that rules over the kings of the earth.” [Read more...]