What many people don't realize is that the writers of these books are an active part of the "Christian Coalition" that Pat Robertson founded in the 70's, with the long term plan of taking over the US government and turning this country into a theocracy, ruled by people who agree with him. This coordinated plan has included think tanks, grass roots party building, an emphasis on the "strict father" family model, in which painful punishment is a major ingredient, so that children are raised to obey without question, and a theology that allows people to sin at will, (the "justified sinner" belief) without having to be accountable, because they are already "saved" by belonging to the right church, saying the right words, voting for the right party and candidates. It has all been funded by large corporations, who profit from the policies of environmental degradation and warmongering that the right wing politicians advocate.
George W. Bush was the right candidate at the right time, and the rapture churches all supported him, even ostracizing congregation members who disagreed. They have overlooked his lies, his torture, his destructiveness because he is "saved" and because his policies hasten the "rapture", the day when Jesus will supposedly beam up Bush voters to the kingdom of heaven.
The great majority of Americans have not known what to make of this heresy, but have not challenged it. Many have turned off to the Bible and religion altogether, many more have dismissed it, not understanding the powerful destructive hold that rapture theology has on its followers. Because they claim Christ, the false preachers have been hard to attack- liberals don't like to call someone else's beliefs wrong or detrimental, since freedom of belief is such a basic principle in the US. Meanwhile, the rapture cult has undermined our self-confidence and hope for the future with its pernicious message of planetary death.
Jesus actually said something very different about His return. He said it would happen in our hearts.
Luke 17: 20And when Jesus was demanded of the Pharisees, when the kingdom of God should come, He answered them and said, The kingdom of God cannot be observed: 21Neither shall they say, Lo here! or, lo there! for, behold, the kingdom of God is within you.
Matthew 7 (KJV) 22Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? 23And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.
The kingdom of God is within us. Whether we worship Allah, or Brahma, or Yahweh, or Buddha, or any of the other myriad names of God, what matters is to love God and our neighbors. Americans are waking up to this- and this awakening is the true rapture.
In the name of the Prince of Peace, Carol Wolman