Guest / Limited Access /

The tendency of the media to connect any major Middle East event to biblical prophecy has itself become predictable. Since the first bombs began falling in Baghdad, journalists working the end-of-the-world beat have been calling evangelicals for comment.

"War in Babylon has evangelicals seeing Earth's final days," says the San Francisco Chronicle. "Direst of predictions for war in Iraq," a Washington Post headline reads. Even Connecticut's Norwich Bulletin says, "Are these the last days? Some Christians say so."

Do many evangelicals really see end times indicators in this second U.S. invasion of Iraq?

To find out, Christianity Today assistant online editor Todd Hertz interviewed two representatives of disspensationalism, a movement known for speculating about end-times prophecy: Dr. Mark Bailey, president of Dallas Theological Seminary, and Todd Strandberg, the founder of the online Rapture Index.

In 1995 Strandberg founded the online Rapture Index, a Dow Jones-type measuring tool of biblical prophecy. He and 12 employees now run fourteen end-times sites, including RaptureReady.com and RaptureMe.com. The combined sites attract more than 250,000 visitors each month. He also cowrote a book due this summer titled Are You Rapture Ready? (E.P. Dutton).

The Rapture Index monitors 45 categories of various indicators prophesized in the Bible. The categories are ranked one to five based on whether they are rising or falling and include: earthquakes, mark of the beast technology, and date setting. A higher cumulative number indicates the world is moving faster toward the end times, Strandberg says.

As of this week, the index is at 174. According to the site, anything over 145 means "Fasten your seat belts." Yet the current index is still ...

Subscriber access only You have reached the end of this Article Preview

To continue reading, subscribe now. Subscribers have full digital access.

Tags:
Read These NextSee Our Latest
RecommendedNY Cardinal, 'AD' Producers Step Up Campaign against Mideast Persecution
NY Cardinal, 'AD' Producers Step Up Campaign against Mideast Persecution
80 leaders sign letter. Pope Francis critical of weak response to ‘unacceptable crimes.’
TrendingMore Martyrs: ISIS Executes Dozens of Ethiopian Christians in Libya
More Martyrs: ISIS Executes Dozens of Ethiopian Christians in Libya
Propaganda video released the same day Justin Welby arrives in Cairo to honor the previous 21 victims.
Editor's PickThe Civil War Is More Than a Historical Fascination
The Civil War Is More Than a Historical Fascination
Why the clash between North and South remains relevant, 150 years later.
Comments
Christianity Today
The Iraq War Has Little Effect on the Rapture Index
hide thisAccess The Archives

In the Archives

March 2003

To continue reading, subscribe now for full print and digital access.