It is impossible to walk into a Christian bookstore and not be confronted with the marketing blitz and amazing popularity of the books written by Tim LaHaye and Jerry Jenkins.

Many pundits credit the new wave of rapture-warning bumper stickers to the Left Behind series.  Countless ministers have had to answer questions from worried church members who have read the books and wondered, “Are we doing enough to get ready?”

Some of the most worried individuals have been children who have received one of the books as a gift. How does a minister answer the barrage of questions and handle the fear associated with Left Behind?

Gary DeMar has given us a new tool for analyzing the LaHaye/Jenkins phenomenon. End Times Fiction helps us understand “that Left Behind is not only a work of fiction, but the theological premise on which it is based is also a work of fiction.”

DeMar dismantles LaHaye’s theology and hermeneutic by repeatedly showing how the Left Behind author violates his own “Golden Rule of (literal) Biblical Interpretation.” DeMar leaves no doubt about the deficiency of LaHaye’s position when he states that “a series of events leading to a pretribulation Rapture cannot be supported by an appeal to the literal interpretation of the Bible.”

The author begins each chapter with a quotation from the Left Behind series, then outlines LaHaye’s faulty interpretation of the Scripture which supposedly informs the quotation.

DeMar effectively dismantles the inconsistent hermeneutic behind LaHaye and Jenkin’s works.  He quotes numerous, highly conservative authors in building his case.

Any minister who has tried to provide an alternative interpretation of biblical eschatology will find End Times Fiction helpful.

And DeMar helps us demonstrate that End Times is more about publishing than literature, and much more about marketing and sales than it is about the Bible.

Joel Snider is pastor of First Baptist Church in Rome, Ga.

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