Now to attempt to pull all these loose threads into something other than a misshapen sweater. Let's try working backwards -- somehow seems fitting, given themes herein addressed! The Rapture, for those who aren't card-carrying Republicans and/or Christian fundamentalists (although the overlap is astounding; Note to self: do a Chi-square analysis on this relationship sometime, post-retirement), is that hour when all 'true Christian believers' will be swept up to heaven. And the dregs (that would be everyone else) better start investing in ice cubes and air conditioners -- it's gonna get hot! (Second Note to self: Read Tom Perrotta's The Leftovers). This is the final sorting out of the good guys from the bad -- talk about the ultimate in silos -- and will coincide with the end of the world (whether predicted by the Mayans or the guy on the street corner with his hand-lettered sign: REPENT, NOW! )
Spangler occupies quite the opposite posture from the 'rapturists'. The latter group appear almost to be salivating, waiting for this great validation of their (unique and quite exclusive) beliefs -- a sort of 'bring it on, we're ready!' stance. Spangler, on the other hand, suggests that hitting the 'reset button' -- (didn't work real well with Noah and not sure things are all that different now; the boats are just bigger) is neither responsible nor, in fact, even sane. He advocates adopting a (and here's a novel idea) unified, global approach, driven by consolidation, not isolation. Admittedly this is a tall order, given the degree of entrenchment at almost every level of individual, community, state, and national beliefs; paralleled equally in our parish, denomination, and ultimately, faith systems. Far more palatable, apparently, to hunker down in our own little value system -- and wait for the End Days.