December 08, 2008

Why The End Times Scared Me as a Kid

Apparently Matthew Paul Turner over at Jesus Needs New PR attended a similar church that I did growing up. They also showed the same "scare the 'Hell' out of you" movies!

I haven't read his book, Churched: One Kid's Journey Towards God Despite A Holy Mess yet, but it's only my list to read in the break between seminary classes. In that book he talks about a clip from the movie Thief in the Night (which my entire church watched when I was a child) that scared him to death. Some forward-thinking YouTuber has uploaded this clip among other from the infamous 1970's end times classic.

If you've been keeping up with my Q and A 2.0 series, I covered an entire range of questions on the end times and how people freak out about them in an unusual way. I am convinced that it is because of movies like this that have crossed the line of "what's does the Bible tell us" and have taken some pretty serious liberties in order to scare people into embracing Christ.

I offer up a warning with this clip. In spite of the bad acting and horrible special effects, this is a pretty scary and freaky clip. Watch at your own risk, and realize that there are two things at play:

1) This is one person's interpretations of what will happen to those who are "Left Behind". I'd love for you to show me all the things in this clip that can be backed up with Scripture. There are a few "general ideas" here that are based on some verses, but nothing specific.

2) This view represents a "dispensational pre-tribulational rapture" view. See my thoughts on that by clicking here.

Again, I warn you about watching this clip. It is surprisingly frightening.

See what I mean? Yikes.

Hell is scary enough, and God's love is amazing enough that we don't have to add to the story. Especially like this.

1 comment:

Bill said...

Of course the makers of this film took some pretty broad creative license in this specific scene.

But generally what is being said here?

During the great tribulation, it is going to be bad. Nobody knows what that looks like. But it will be bad. The point: You don't want to be there if you can avoid it.

Since we have no clue how those specific prophetic events are going to play out, isn't it reasonable for those who do believe in a pre-trib rapture to want to help people avoid such a horrible time?

You also have to remember what else was going on in the world at that time that is so different from these days. This type of apocalyptic story telling about horrible visions of the future were everywhere: Hello? Planet of The Apes? (okay stop laughing :) ).

Pretending that the end times are going to be some kind of picnic is irresponsible. We're in them now.

No, I wouldn't show this type of film today. It's irrelevant and I'm just too dang distracted by that guy's mustache to keep a serious face.

But let's not slam other well-meaning believers 30 or so years ago because they don't have the same insight of our cultural relevance you enjoy 30 years later. They were simply doing the best they had with what they knew at that specific point in time...just as you are doing now.

Believe it or not, many will look back on well-meaning believers 30 years from now and ask the same questions: How could they have done that?