Tim LaHaye Backs “Glenn Beck’s End-Times Prophet” on Islamic Antichrist

A coup for “Glenn Beck’s End-Times Prophet” Joel Richardson:

“In The Islamic Antichrist, Joel Richardson reveals that the return of the Islamic Imam of the 12th century is none other than the Antichrist of Revelation. Every preacher in America should read this book.” —Tim Lahaye

One wonders why LaHaye didn’t make this discovery himself, given that he’s been in the “prophecy expert” racket for several decades longer than Richardson and has churned out numerous books about the supposed “Last Days”.

LaHaye’s Left Behind series (co-written with Jerry B. Jenkins) famously presents a European Antichrist, who becomes head of the United Nations. The first instalment of the story’s novelised theology features two characters discussing the Antichrist’s characteristics:

“…Almost every end-times writer I respect will come out of Western Europe, maybe Greece or Italy or Turkey” (340)

The book’s Antichrist is described as being of Roman ancestry and as being blond (one character compares him to Brad Pitt); this was a judicious interpretation, given that a few years later Jerry Falwell’s alternative Jewish Antichrist concept was greeted with distaste, for obvious reasons.

LaHaye makes similar claims in his “non-fiction” companion to the series,  Are We Living in the Last Days?, in which he further explains that the Antichrist

will sit in the [rebuilt Jerusalem] temple of God and proclaim himself to be God. (278)

Also:

In our Left Behind series we imagined that as part of the covenant he promises to dismantle and move the Dome of the Rock to his new capital in Babylon, where the mosque will be set up as a Muslim holy place. That would solve the tension between the Jews and Arabs over the Temple Mount… (128)

To put it bluntly, these are the ramblings of a fool – the notion that someone could claim to be God incarnate and persuade Muslims to go along with such a scheme is one of the most ludicrous propositions that I have ever read. It tells us more about the dynamic within particular segments of Christianity than anything to do with Islam; there is a long tradition of charismatic individuals who claim to receive special messages from God or to have supernatural powers, and it looks to me that Christian fears about accidentally following a “false teacher” who seems plausible have here been projected onto another religion.

LaHaye’s throw-away reference to Turkey fits with Richardson’s predictions about the Islamic world uniting under a Turkish Caliphate, and Islam does have a role in LaHaye’s eschatology, as allied with Russia against Israel – this goes back to apocalyptic books from the Cold War era, although the extent to which Russia will lead the alliance has been tweaked over the years by authors such as Hal Lindsey. However, Islam is not at the centre of LaHaye’s “End Times” universe – the first Left Behind book was published in 1995, and reflects conservative fears about the role of the United Nations during the Clinton era.

The Left Behind industry will doubtless keep on churning out books and spin-off products; but LaHaye is more than happy to jump on a more topical bandwagon.

8 Responses

  1. I wonder, why is Joel so obsessed with Islam? I know he considers it a false religion, but what about Hinduism, Sikhism, Buddhism, and so forth? Won’t these non-Christian, and therefore, false and Satanic religions, play a prominent role during the end times? If so, then what role will they play? Will all these religions leave behind mutual hostilities and unite under the Islamic Mahdi to wage a war against Christians? Or is it the other way round, Hindus, Buddhists, Sikhs, etc teaming up with Jesus to fight the evil Muslamic Rayguns?

    Joel’s analysis seems to reduce the entire world to the forces of Islam and Christianity, without any consideration for the plethora of other religions that exist.

  2. I know Joel reads this blog, so I’d like to ask him a few more questions:

    (1) Which version of the Islamic Mahdi fits the description of the Anti-Christ, the Sunni Mahdi or the Shiite Mahdi?

    (1.1) If the Sunni Mahdi is the anti-Christ, then who is the Shiite Mahdi? If the Shiite Mahdi turns out to be the anti-Christ, then who will be Sunni Mahdi?

    (1.2) Neither Sunnis nor Shiites believe that the Mahdi will claim to be God. So if the Mahdi does claim to be God, won’t Muslims reject him?

    (1.3) Neither Sunnis nor Shiites believe that the Mahdi is superior to Prophet Muhammad(saw). If Mahdi is the anti-Christ whose sole purpose is to destroy Christianity, then Muhammad(saw) who logically would be more evil than the Mahdi, would have finished Christianity long ago. Yet, he entered into treaties with Christians ensuring their safety, warned his followers about mistreating Dhimmis, and so forth. He was far more concerned about battling polytheism than Christianity or Judaism. In fact, if Islam is the religion of the anti-Christ, there wouldn’t be any Christians or Jews in Muslim countries. Will the Mahdi be anti-Christ despite Muhammad’s example?

    (2) In the history of Islam, many have claimed to be the Mahdi. The followers of Bahaullah are convinced that he is the awaited Mahdi whereas the Ahmadiyas believe it was Mirza Ghulam Ahmed. On what basis do you reject MGA or Bahaullah as Mahdi?

  3. @ IbnAbuTalib,

    All of your questions are ansered in detail in Joel’s book “The Islamic Anti-Christ”, I suggest you pick up a copy :-)

  4. Iprofessshirk, surely you have read Joel’s book. Otherwise, how are you able to make the claim that all my queries have been put to rest in the book? Assuming you are being truthful, could YOU please answer my questions?

  5. There is a Left Behind computer game. Someone should ask Charlie Brooker to review it (in fact, I bet he could a few of these games together for another Screenwipe special!)

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Left_Behind:_Eternal_Forces

  6. wake up people. Put down the remote control and pick up the bible and koran. Compare their end times. They are opposite of each other. The ying and the yang. Islam vs Christian and Jews. Muslims understand this why can’t Christians?

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