Americans Can't Escape Thoughts Of The End Of The World These Days - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

6/27/02 - Tyler

Americans Can't Escape Thoughts Of The End Of The World These Days

   Almost any person at the Green Acres Baptist Church prayer meeting has either thought about the end times recently, or read one of Tim Lahaye and Jerry Jenkins' books.

   "I think people are trying to reach out for something the whole nation are reaching out for something," says Bill Strother. Not because the end of the world frightens them, but more so Christians believe the religious war in the Middle East looks a lot like the prophecies of Revelation.

   Green Acres Pastor David Dykes explains, "The fact that there's this conflict in the Middle East just feeds into what the Bible says is going to happen."

   "There's so much Biblical prophecy being fulfilled every day that it could very well be that we are very close to the time Jesus will return to this earth and I feel that very strongly and if that is people will be left behind," says Jeanine Lawhon." That's where the series of best-selling novels begin. Number ten, "The Remnant" comes out Tuesday and is already the number one book of July in mainstream and Christian fiction sales and it hasn't even hit stands. But how has a fiction account intrigued so many Americans, even Non-Christians to think about Apocalypse and Armageddon?

   Lifeway Christian Store Manager Paul Herman explains, "I think it is actually a phenomenon. It is something people want to hear about, the end times have always been popular."

   Pastors like Randy Potter preach revelation and they say when they do, the people will come. "If you read the book of Revelation you can find a crisis of any sort," Potter explains. "There are earthquakes, there are storms, there are attacks of armies there are creatures there are plagues there's everything so any time any of that happens somewhere in the world it causes people to take concern and say is this at the end."

   17-percent of Americans polled by Time and CNN think that will happen in their lifetime. Now 35-percent say they're more tuned in than ever to news events and how they relate to the end of the world since the September 11th attacks.

   "We don't know exactly when the end is going to be because millions of years can be an instant," says Bill Strother. "And I think this is the reason people are reading all of this and the fiction part of it does add adventure into it and anxiety and I guess people enjoy it."

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