For all their sanctimonious talk of pro-life, the Evangelical Right likes nothing better than a good war. When the bombs start falling and the bullets flying, the Christian Right becomes orgasmic at the prospect of death and destruction as many believe that war with North Korea will lead to Armageddon predicted the Bible’s Book of Revelation tied in with this foolishness is the continuing war in the Middle East.

While only 36 percent of all Americans believe that the Bible is God's Word and should be taken literally, 59 percent say they believe that events predicted in the Book of Revelation will come to pass. Almost one out of four Americans believe that 9/11 was predicted in the Bible, and nearly one in five believes that he or she will live long enough to see the end of the world. Even more significant for this study, over one-third of those Americans who support Israel report that they do so because they believe the Bible teaches that the Jews must possess their own country in the Holy Land before Jesus can return.[1]

This type of apocalyptic thinking leads many to the totally unfounded belief they will see the afterworld spoken of in the Bible, a type of fatalism that is irrational and dangerous. The peril of this catastrophic yearning comes from the idea that for many evangelicals, In their view America, as God’s instrument, should encourage wars and chaos in North Korea and the Middle East in order to “hurry up” God and His agenda. [2]

Belief in apocalyptic prophecy is widespread in the United States. During the first Gulf War, 14% of one CNN national poll thought it was the beginning of Armageddon, and “American bookstores were experiencing a run on books about prophecy and the end of the world.”[3] In 1993, 20% of those polled thought the second coming of Christ would occur near the year 2000.[4] When the United States and the Soviet Union locked in a nuclear arms race the same issues surfaced when I was attending school.

Much was made of the Russian Bear and the American Eagle fitting the same portion of the Book of Revelation, including the tying the fire of nuclear explosions to verses in the Bible referring to the flames associated with the destruction God would wreak on non-Christians. The unusual fixation with the end of the world, in particular, the details of describing how God “will then (brutally) kill the entire human race except for Christians” (for many meaning “born again” Christians). [5]

The Book of Revelation is the integral passion of their foreign policy, their belief that the founding of Israel foretells the imminent Second Coming, conversion or death for Jews and eternal happiness for themselves in Heaven. In their view America, as God’s instrument should encourage wars and chaos in order to “hurry up” God and His agenda. One of their leaders is John Hagee, founder of Christians United for Israel. Senator Lieberman is a friend and favored speaker at his events. I have described The Strangest Alliance in History about how each side thinks it is using the other for its own ends.

Harold Camping predicted the end of the world as May 21, 2011, at exactly 6 pm (sunset in Jerusalem). Of course, that date is long past, but the death wish of many Christians continues unabated. The number of predictions about the world’s end number into the hundreds if not the thousands; yet, the world is still here. The news has yet to sink in because many on the Evangelical Right believe that by promoting or encouraging war with North Korea, the biblical prediction will occur.

All this shows how evangelical leaders put support for wars ahead of their social values. Their support includes every new law giving Washington ever greater police powers over American citizens, such as the Patriot Act, Military Commissions Act and the recent National Defense Authorization Act which tear asunder much of the Bill of Rights. Most also supported torture of prisoners of war (with the notable exception of Chuck Colson of Prison Fellowship). All this comes with their “social values.” [6]

Tying this all together is a problem that came to me unannounced. I distant relative died and left a considerable amount of money to me. He also left me a deed to the Golden Gate Bridge but I can’t afford the taxes. If you know anyone that might be interested in purchasing this landmark, I’d be willing to let it go for an extremely favorable price. Take my word for it.

(This is a clip from a longer piece I did for a Dallas religious site. It was fun. I got some anonymous comments that I suspect were from closet non-believers. Anyway, my preacher friend thanked me for stretching a few minds)



[1] Timothy P. Weber, On the Road to Armageddon, How evangelicals became Israel's best friend, beliefnet, http://www.beliefnet.com/Faiths/Christianity/End-Times/On-The-Road-...

[2] Jon Basil Utley, Evangelicals, Ron Paul and War, The American Conservative,  January 20, 2012, http://www.theamericanconservative.com/blog/2012/01/20/evangelicals...

[3] Lamy, Millennium Rage , p. 155. See also: Boyer, When Time Shall Be No More, pp. 327-31

[4] Sara Diamond, Political Millennialism within the Evangelical Subculture, in Charles B. Strozier and Michael Flynn, The Year 2000: Essays on the End (New York: NYU Press, 1997), p. 210

[5] Jon Basil Utley, Evangelicals, Ron Paul and War, The American Conservative,  January 20, 2012, http://www.theamericanconservative.com/blog/2012/01/20/evangelicals...

[6] Jon Basil Utley, Evangelicals, Ron Paul and War, The American Conservative,  January 20, 2012, http://www.theamericanconservative.com/blog/2012/01/20/evangelicals...

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Comment by Grinning Cat on September 12, 2017 at 3:33pm

Related: Chris Hedges' War Is a Force That Gives Us Meaning. I'll borrow Wikipedia's description: "Hedges draws on classical literature and his experiences as a war correspondent to argue that war seduces entire societies, creating fictions that the public believes and relies on to continue to support conflicts. He also describes how those who experience war may find it exhilarating and addictive."

He's made an excerpt, "Haunted by War", available online.

(Goodreads.com has reviews, quotes, and links to sellers and a nearby-library search.)

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