Mass executions. Imprisonment and death by burning. Torture, murder, lies, fake IDs, website hacking, defiance of authority, and blasting the True Enemies Of God with Direct Energy Weapons.
All these and more, the Religious Right protests regularly when they appear in “secular” video games. All these and more, the Religious Right celebrates at an online store dedicated to books and movies that depict those very same things.
Non-Christians read the LEFT BEHIND© SERIES (if they bother at all as the writing itself is patchy at best, inept and intellectually insulting at worst) as SciFi (“At least they’re readin’ books sanctioned by Ja-heezus!” the farthest Right might claim.) and for some time now, Christians have been able to visit the LEFT BEHIND STORE http://www.faithcenteredresources.com/authors/tim-lahaye.asp to order all their tapes, books and DVDs to give to those heathens in their lives to make them converts to...well, I'm not sure what they'd convert to if their sole exposure to Christianity is these books. As well, the LaHaye cartel currently has a LEFT BEHIND 10th Anniversary edition which has “Special features in this commemorative issue include a full-color, pullout timeline with LaHaye's prophecy notes, behind-the-scenes commentary from Jenkins, and letters from readers whose lives have been changed by reading ‘Left Behind.’”
The Irreligious Left has every reason to be amused, affronted and horrified. The Christian Right should give pause to wonder, “Why should I buy ‘LaHaye’s prophecy notes’ when I have the original 'notes' in the Bible in my lap? What can Tim LaHaye tell me that Jesus and the Holy Spirit can’t? (In fact, the LEFT BEHIND books and products – in particular the “pullout timeline”, are in direct contradiction to Scripture. Matthew 24:36 says quite clearly: "No one knows about that day or hour, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father.”)
With a combined 40,000,000 LEFT BEHIND books in print, [This represents a conservative, $320,000,000 spent by American Christians to purchase these works of dubious literary quality rather than sending their money to an organization like World Vision (http://www.worldvision.org/) where the cash might have done some real good.], these men and their LEFT BEHIND STORE have made a mockery not only of Christianity, but of Christian writing as well. Carol Balizet, in 1980 did the End Times thing in her book THE SEVEN LAST YEARS (http://www.amazon.com/Seven-Last-Years-Carol-Balizet/dp/0800791444) with economy, dignity and decidedly better writing (as well as a lot less open space on each page (grrrrrr)).
Novels featuring Christian characters that actually make a difference in the lives of the people they come in contact with – as opposed to murdering, lying to, hacking websites of, defying authority of, and blasting with DEWs and that have the respect of the non-Christian community – are out there. LORD OF THE RINGS, CHRONICLES OF NARNIA, C. S. Lewis’ SPACE TRILOGY, the works of GENE WOLFE, Connie Willis’ THE DOOMSDAY BOOK are just a few that have Christian characters in them who don’t blow people away in Jesus’ Holy Name.
And why don’t we hear about them?
Well, if you had over a quarter of a billion dollars to flash around, wouldn’t you hire the best publicists, too? (BTW, What’s a “prophecy product”?)