The Rapture Can’t Happen Soon Enough to Suit Me

As an atheist and a skeptic, I try to limit my magical thinking to occasional moments of vanity and revenge. But lately I’ve found myself wishing that if the Rapture is on the level, it would happen soon . . . I mean real soon.

The Rapture is the name given to a future event in which Jesus descends from heaven and gathers up all Christian fundamentalists [a.k.a. Christian Right] and swooshes them up bodily to heaven, but not before they’ve jettisoned their clothes and jewelry and all forms of prostheses, including pompadour hairpieces and inflatable bouffant support bladders.

Before I get too far into this, I want it understood that I’m not wishing these folks ill. On the contrary, I’m wishing them what they’ve always wanted — an eternity of enjoying the unchallenged moral certitude they were never quite able to fully enjoy here on Earth, but which nonetheless caused the rest of us no end of misery.

The signs for finally seeing the backside of the Christian Right are encouraging. According to raptureready.com, the Rapture Index (omens portending the Rapture) stands at 163, the highest it’s been since September 11, 2001 when it peaked at its all-time high of 182. I don’t know what the numbers mean either. But I’m not making this up.

It appears Jesus is getting his transition team in place, what with the recent raptures — albeit by conventional means — of the Rev. D. James Kennedy, godfather of the American Dominionist [a.k.a. theofascist] movement and hater of our secular constitution, and the Rev. Jerry Falwell, founder of the Moral Majority and hater of all people he could think of to hate.

I do wish the Lord would get his jesters assembled and move on this. Think what the Rapture will mean to those of us left behind.

Twenty-three percent of the 208 million adults in America identify themselves as either Pentecostal or Charismatic Christians [a.k.a. Rapture-ready]. In the event of the Rapture up to 50 million workers will be leaving their jobs without clocking out. The number of positions vacated will be five times as many needed to wipe out the country’s unemployment, leaving the rest of us in a workers’ paradise. Affirmative action be damned! It’s “trickle up” economics at work here.

Not only will our career paths be enhanced, but we’ll have a chance at longer, healthier lives by taking the untold billons of dollars President Bush is currently funneling into the Christian Right’s faith-based coffers to save “Americans one soul at a time” and reallocating them to stem cell research and universal health care, which will save considerably more of an American than just his or her ethereal soul.

Along with vocational upgrades and improved health, we’ll no longer have to wonder, “is our kids learning?” High school grads having trouble gaining admission to one of our over-crowded universities will have immediate access to the vacant desks — and possibly iPods — left by the tens of thousands of Rapture-ready students attending America’s 102 “Christ-centered” colleges, which will be under new management and begging for warm bodies.

And guys, speaking of warm bodies, the universities will be flush with coeds since far fewer teenage girls will be home taking care of their babies — there were 435,000 teen mothers last year. The hundreds of millions of federal dollars spent annually on abstinence-only sex education [a.k.a. religious dogma] in our public high schools will now fund comprehensive sex education programs that promote safe and effective birth control methods. Let’s face it. It was only the Christian Right who thought hormone-pumped primates would ever stop “doing it.”

By the way, do I even need to mention that with the Rapture-ready blissfully ensconced behind the pearly gates the rest of us will be left in peace to enjoy our bedrooms and our most personal intimate relationships on our own terms?

Unarguably though, the highlight of the Rapture will be finding out which of the “born-again” politicians are left on the ground. Unless someone has been lying to the American people — perish the thought — we stand to lose 48 Senators, 186 Representatives, four Supreme Court justices, seven presidential hopefuls, and one hopeless president.

If it turns out — highly unlikely though it is — that the 2008 presidential frontrunners of both parties are missing on Rapture-plus-one, we’ll enjoy the remaining election season with candidates who’ve always been willing to talk about more substantive issues than their most recent meet and greet with the Lord. The God-talk will be in heaven where it belongs.

Consider this . . . with a smile. If the Democrats with Dennis Kucinich and Al Gore — we can talk him into it — or the Greens with Cynthia McKinney and Ralph Nader can’t defeat the unraptured and unrepentant Ron Paul and Rudy Giuliani on their own merits, we’ll now own the Supreme Court.

There is a downside. We know damn-good-and-well who’ll be sitting at his Oval Office desk with a “fooled you again” smirk on his mug on Rapture-plus-one. But keep in mind, we’ll still have Section 4 of Article II of the Constitution and we’ll have the votes and we’ll have the prison. Keep in mind also, gods mostly help those who help themselves.

Having imagined all the above, my thinking is not so magical as to believe there won’t be a few post-Rapture problems. After all, according to Revelations this will be the time of the Great Tribulation and we’ll still have Satan [a.k.a. your choice] to wrestle with. But with the Christian Right enjoying eternity . . . well . . . who cares where, we’ll have only one Devil in the ring at a time. And he’ll be the one carrying a pitchfork not a Bible.

Author’s note: Hopefully Jesus is a not a strict sectarian and swooshes up Jewish and Muslim fundamentalists as well. WHAT? I have the right to hope.

Robert Weitzel is a contributing editor to Media With a Conscience. His essays regularly appear in The Capital Times in Madison, WI. He can be contacted at: robertweitzel@mac.com. Read other articles by Robert, or visit Robert's website.

13 comments on this article so far ...

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  1. rob said on January 21st, 2008 at 9:28am #

    i can only imagine the responses you’ve got for your piece on the rapture. very funny. very scary too considering the huckmeister is a devout rapturist and he could possibly be the next president. puzzled though as to your support for al gore and your opposition to ron paul. trying to understand how someone with a 10000sq/ft home and more voyager miles than capt. james t. kirk ended up being to voice for the environment. equally puzzling is your choice to abandon those facts and endorse the outright hypocrite.

    i find it troubling that for all the votes cast by dr paul against patriot act to spare YOUR freedom, consistently against the wars in iraq, afghanistan and their funding. his constant pleas to keep the fed in check to safeguard YOUR hard EARNED money, his stance against the war on drugs and his major opposition to corporate influence in washington & vice versa. all this along with his courage to stand up in the face of enormous negative public opinion to inform the US public on their unjust foreign policy.

    to be fair, many (and you are probably one of these) oppose his stance on healthcare, abortion, gun control, conservation and/or education. to some, his policies do not make any sense but at least he backs his views with reasoned argument. as someone who is pro-choice i understand this but he still makes compelling argument. i work in the medical field in the uk where i can assure you that all is not smelling of roses. to be fair our current system is better than the system in place in the US at the moment but it does have its major flaws (you cannot, with your views on sustainability, begin to imagine the waste).

    so to the point. i too am a fan of kucinich but i think only RP is the only change agent who is looking at the root of the problem. there are many things that i dislike about kucinich though but i feel it immature to cast all his views to the ranks of the insane. ron paul has brought up some pertinant issues the likes of which the fox viewing nation were never likely to be made aware of. for this he deserves RESPECT, enough respect not to be mentioned in the same sentence as that twit MR 9-11.

    personally i like ron paul because he understands that our problems with healthcare, environment, energy and education are by products of the artifiial stimulus govts throw at us to achieve economic growth. i also like him because by withdrawing us bases from the arabian peninsula he will stop ensuring the supply of oil which is the number one hindrance to market sourced, alternative energy solutions. he has time and again addressed the fact that americans live way beyond their means i think he is alone there.

    i’ve included a small clip. might help to clarify my point of view

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1iKgoekcY9A

  2. Erik Rose said on January 21st, 2008 at 4:33pm #

    From one Atheist to another . . . bravo, Mr. Weitzel, Bravo! Very enjoyable!

    Keep them coming!

    EJR

  3. Jeff said on January 21st, 2008 at 5:35pm #

    rob
    As some one from across the pond, do you know whom RP actually re-presents?
    Stick with your degraded monarchy. SEE the connection.
    You are as dumbfounded as any trailer park American.
    No growth exists without war.
    You should know!
    Be a GOOD Patriot.
    Or maybe just a GOOD Parrot!

    Just some stupid canadian!??!?!

  4. Adnan said on January 22nd, 2008 at 9:48am #

    I liked entire article, but I liked Author’s note even more. Why only Christians should be freed from their idiots, we Muslims deserve to be freed from our’s , too.

    Dear Jesus (Isa), help us ASAP.

    Adnan

  5. Bill said on January 22nd, 2008 at 6:21pm #

    Great read, I look so forward to the rapture even though I no it’s
    fundamentalist nonsense, It still would be a great day when those
    whacko’s are gone. Maybe the 911 Islamic nutballs will share their
    virgins with the new arrivals.

  6. HR said on January 22nd, 2008 at 8:28pm #

    Amen, brother! The sooner the better.

  7. maha said on January 23rd, 2008 at 4:17pm #

    911 — atrocity committed by Mossad and US government, a pretext for invasion, plunder and total control and enslavement of the masses. Your government is your most dangerous enemy.
    7/7 — committed by the the British government whose hands are already drenched blood.
    Bill, your “Islamic nutballs” are recruited and trained by your government — do you never wonder why the attacks more than anything target ordinary people?

  8. Kevin said on July 14th, 2008 at 9:05am #

    This is weird, you believe the rapture will happen but ignore the tribulation, chaos and suffering of those left behind that follows. The following 7 years on earth will be literal hell. You may not believe the bible, but that’s your problem as I’ve thoroughly researched it for myself and found it to be infallable. Reading unfulfulled bible prophesy is like reading tomorrow’s newspaper. Its true, the world as we know it will soon be gone, and I have nothing but pity for all those whose names will be removed from the Book of Life. Anyone who doubts the accuracy of bible prophesies only has to read them and see for yourself how incredibly accurate it is.

  9. Chris said on August 17th, 2008 at 1:36pm #

    How sad, that you are all willing to live without any real peace or hope for the future.
    Have you even read the Bible? Have you seen how many prophecies of the Bible have come true??? How about the nation of Israel? How about the same nations that are now the European Community which are the same countries that the Bible says will be the revived Roman Empire in the days before He comes again? How about the one-world government that will soon come? Does not global warming unite all the countries of the world to want to come together with one purpose?
    The Bible says that the war of Gog and Magog are the current countries of the Arab states and Russia (the country north of the Black Sea). It says in the last days before the great tribulation comes, that Russia along with the Arab nations will make war against Israel. God will intervene with a miraculous slaughter of them that try to invade the country of His People. 7 mos. of the Jews trying to bury the dead and their weapons. It’s the last sign of proof of His existence before He sends out his judgements.
    With the current invasion of Russia and Georgia, it has been said that Israel helped the Georgians fight by supplying them with Israeli weaponry and training their troops with Israeli warfare. Now does Russia have a problem with Israel? I think the answer is YES.
    If this is all a coincidence, then the Bible has come very close in it’s predictions.
    So I ask you all, if you read and study what the Bible says before you make this all out to be a big joke, and still feel the world will be great without Christians, than I guess you are meant to be lost souls. Have a wonderful time without laws or a sense of order. Enjoy your freedoms being taken away from you and the earthquakes, floods, famine, disease, pain and suffering, and World War III!!! Ah, yes it will come!!! I know I won’t be around and I am so jealous of you all, not!!!!
    The History Channel has made many documentaries of the End Times and people from all countries, both Christian and not, believe that the world is coming to an end. GO READ FOR YOURSELF!!!!

  10. Allison Whittaker said on November 2nd, 2008 at 4:49am #

    The author does not realize that by his ignorance, he is fullfilling Bible prophecy. Sounds like a scoffer to me. God is not mocked. What we reap, we shall surely sow. Yes, the Rapture will happen, but the picture you paint of “Happy Times” following will not be so. It will be a time of famine, earthquakes, meteorites/asteroids, increase demonic activity, murders, etc. You will not be able to buy or sell anything unless you have some type of ID mark physically placed on your right hand or forehead. It may be tattooed on or inplanted. Joke and make fun of it, and not believe it, does not change that fact that it WILL happen. If you really are a journalist, then do some research and pray that God opens your eyes and heart and draws you to Him. God does love you and is not willing anyone should perish, but that all would come to repentance and belive in Him. I am a Christian, but do not believe in hating anyone, but I do believe in the Bible. I don’t and won’ t try to force my beliefs on anyone, but will share them. Everyone who “claims” to be a Christian is not necessarily one. Maybe you have been jaded by those who claim it, but don’t live it. I really hope when the Rapture does happen, you remember this article and repent and turn to God.

  11. R.H.Davis said on November 9th, 2008 at 1:25pm #

    “Jesus answered and said unto him, verily, verily, I say unto thee, Exept a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.” John 3:3
    “Jesus sayeth unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me” John 14:6 There is a way which seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death. ” Proverbs 14:12
    ” But he that believeth not shall be damned” Mark 16:16

    Once you’re in hell, you can’t get out!

  12. Jared said on February 2nd, 2009 at 12:23pm #

    MILLIONS MISSING or MILLIONS MISSLERING?

    Many these days are abandoning the pretribulation rapture view, and the June, 1995 article by Chuck Missler (”Byzantine Text Discovery: Ephraem the Syrian”) reveals why there is such a mutiny! First of all, the authoritative scholar that Missler cited, Dr. Paul Alexander, referred only to “Pseudo-Ephraem” and not to Ephraem the Syrian. (If an unsigned ancient manuscript resembles the real Ephraem but there is a question of authorship, they assign it to “Pseudo-Ephraem” – the word “pseudo” meaning “possibly.” For some groundless reason, Grant Jeffrey, the one who reportedly found the “discovery,” changed Dr. Alexander’s terminology! For more info on Jeffrey, Google “Wily Jeffrey.”) And Missler’s scholarship is also questionable. According to the Los Angeles Times (July 30, 1992), about one-fourth of Missler’s 1992 book “The Magog Factor” (which he co-authored with Hal Lindsey) was a daring plagiarism of Dr. Edwin Yamauchi’s 1982 book “Foes from the Northern Frontier”! Four months later Yamauchi’s publisher revealed that both Lindsey and Missler had promised to stop all publishing of their book. But in 1995 they were found publishing “The Magog Invasion” (which was either a revision or a replacement of “The Magog Factor”) – which had a substantial amount of the same plagiarism! (Dave MacPherson’s 1998 book “The Three R’s” has complete documentation on this and other pretrib scandals.) After listing “1820″ as the reported date of the birth of pretrib (he should have said “1830″), Missler sees a pretrib rapture in that Medieval writer’s phrase “taken to the Lord” and, since he evidently favors rewriting others instead of researching, is unaware that Dr. Alexander explained that this phrase really means “participate at least in some measure in beatitude” – which has reference only to doing acts of virtue on earth and not being raptured away from earth! Alexander added that the same ancient writer held to only one final second coming (and not to any prior coming) which would follow the time of Antichrist! (Readers can Google “Deceiving and Being Deceived” by MacPherson to see how groundless the Pseudo-Ephraem claim is and to learn how desperate pretribs are to find any pre-1830 evidence for their escapist view. Dr. Robert Gundry of Westmont College has also demolished the Pseudo-Ephraem claim in his 1997 book “First the Antichrist.”) Since Missler also leans on Thomas Ice, readers can evaluate Ice’s qualifications by Googling “America’s Pretrib Rapture Traffickers,” “Thomas Ice (Bloopers),” “Thomas Ice (Hired Gun),” and “Pretrib Rapture Diehards” (the latter part). For further light on the 179-year-old, fringe-British-invented pretribulation theory, Google or Yahoo “Pretrib Rapture – Hidden Facts.” Finally – why would anyone who has the brains of a rocket scientist want to be taken up with the concept of an any-moment pretrib rapture? The answer may well be that there’s more money in elevating a rapture than launching a rocket!

  13. JD said on June 17th, 2009 at 7:22pm #

    It’s very sad to see people on here with no hope, no faith, and quite honestly appear to be very angry at the world. Just in the last few decades more and more artifacts are being found to prove the Bible isn’t just a fairytale. The ironic twist is they haven’t been able to prove the “big bang” theory, yet they have been able to prove stories written in the Bible. The Bible doesn’t mention “rapture” but it does mention a catching away, and also it mentions they’ll be one in the mill, one taken, one in the field, one taken. Everyone left will be marked and enslaved under a complete lawless world that will decide if you live if you die how much you will earn and what your overall worth is for just being a piece of cattle. No, you are incorrect, you will miss the Christians when we are gone, because we’ve been the ones fighting for you to be free, so that you can be free to either choose God or not. I’ll pray for some of you tonight, because that’s what we are suppose to do, pray that your heart is softened, and open, so the blinders are taken away before its too late.