24 thoughts on “Rapture Practice”

  1. This reminds me of the old tithing joke:

    Three ministers got together for their golf outing and started talking about church finances and tithing.

    The Methodist tells of his tithing ritual, “I draw a 4 foot circle and throw my money in the air. Any money that lands outside the circle I give to God.”

    The Luthern says, “My method is similar, except I draw an eight inch circle, throw my money up in the air and whatever lands ‘in’ the circle I give to God.”

    They looked at the Baptist and he says, “I use the “Rapture method…”

    They said, “Hungh? What’s that?”

    The Fundy tells them, “…simple, I just throw my money up in the air and what God wants he keeps.”

    As with all things Fundy, they believe God needs help, so they are taking the initial leap… and God will do the rest.

    It’s a poor god who needs our help to acomplish his will…..

  2. @ Don:

    Classic! It goes right along with how you know a church is about to split. The offering plate on the one side of the congregation is consistently filled with cash and checks while the offering plate on the other side is consistently filled with change and pocket lint.

  3. Another image comes to mind. On the last “Shrek” DVD they do the “Far, Far Away Idol” spoof. At the end where you get to choose who you think should win, Donkey is jumping up and saying, “Pick me, Pick me!”
    I wish I had the know how to modify the above picture to put long ears and tails on all those guys, with voice bubbles saying, “Pick me, Pick me!”

  4. @Jordan that would also imply a Sovereign God…. oh yeah, these are fundies… silly me what was I thinking?
    Of course the fundy’s thoughts wouldn’t be so deep so he would be out there thinking, “Maybe if this jump is good enough then God will rapture us.” “Maybe this one.” “How about this one.”
    Keep Jumping, Keep Jumping! All I can say is if Michael Jordan didn’t make it out with his jumping and hang time…. what chance do these guys have?

  5. @ Stephie, Agreed.

    I can usually relate to the the foolishness that this forum exposes and mocks. This, however, is completely outside of my experience. Do Fundies (some of them anyway) seriously think that they need to practice to be caught away? Talk about complete lack of Faith in the Spirit of God. I’ve seen some strange things but this is new to me. Please, if there is anyone who can enlighten me on this practice, fill me in. I know sometimes it’s hard to explain the oddities but I really don’t get this one. If someone could explain rationale or scriptural (or even traditional) basis, I would appreciate it

  6. @Private I: I always took rapture practice as something of a joke and that’s the impression I got from pastors, youth leaders, and others who “led” in “rapture practice.” Maybe there are those out there who do take it seriously, but in my experience it was a lighthearted way of poking fun of ourselves and the “practical realities” of our eschatology. (When I say “our” I’m referring to myself when I was a fundy; I’ve since abandoned fundamentalism, dispensationalism, and premillennialism entirely.) I put rapture practice in the same category as Baptists cracking jokes about fried chicken, church potlucks, etc.

  7. I thought I’d heard all the strange practices. During my childhood, there was a man who used to wave his snotty handkerchief when we sang, “Hold the fort for I am coming, Jesus signals still; Wave the answer back to heaven [snotty handkerchief waving]…”

  8. Darrell, love your blog! Love the humor! Love the insight!

    For all I knew there really might be churches out here doing this. The first church my husband went to as youth pastor after we graduated was a little church out in the country in IN where the pastor claimed he’d been to college for 4 years “and never learned a thing.” Once he had a “wave offering” where we were to wave our bills in the air and someone else could come and snatch it and wave it instead. Not sure of the point of that. I didn’t do any grabbing of money from other people! Another time an evangelist wanted everyone at the altar. After repeated reasons to come, he resorted to, “If you want to ring the bells of heaven, come on down front!” I think my husband and I were about the only ones who wouldn’t go forward. It was such sheer manipulation. So it wouldn’t surprise me if that pastor HAD instituted “rapture practice!’ 😀 He sure did lots of other crazy things!

  9. Unfortunately, unlike Pastor’s Wife, I know this kind of stuff does indeed happen. We went to a service where the WHOLE visiting choir did Rapture Practice while singing some song about heaven. Then as now, it turned my stomach! I cannot understand how anything so idiotic could even be countenanced by so-called “Bible-believing” churches.

  10. The only time I can remember “rapture practice” was when I was in first grade and we used to do it on the playground at my Christian school. It was a game we played. @ Cordovan a choir doing this while singing a song about heaven. ::shaking head::

  11. @Kitty: I realize it sounds bizarre but you should have seen it–it looked even more bizarre. I was kinda hoping for a selective rapture at that moment which would have snatched that whole choir outta there!

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