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The Rapture Exposed: The Message of Hope in the Book of Revelation

4.08  ·  Rating details ·  440 ratings  ·  77 reviews
Kindle Edition, 242 pages
Published March 30th 2007 by Basic Books (first published 2004)
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Nov 11, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I'm on page 78 and quitting. She's a good writer, and I appreciate that somewhere out there are other Christians who actively loathe the "Left Behind" series, and the theology behind it.

My problem is that I have issues with dispensationalism and the Book of Revelation itself that go back to Hal Lindsey's The Late Great Planet Earth, which I read when I was about 14. It scared me to the point of terrible stomachaches every night (at like 2 a.m.) for about 6 the point of holding my br
Sep 10, 2007 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
If you ever see a Left Behind book on my list, this book will be responsible. So far, this implies the Left Behind stuff may be even worse than I thought, which is saying a lot. But there is also the likelihood that Left Behind is even more hilarious than I thought, once you get past how much more disturbing it turns out to be.
I picked this book up at the library as background reading for the Sunday School class on Revelation that I'm teaching this month. Rossing, a professor and ordained minister in the Evangelical Lutheran Church of America, apparently wrote this book to counteract the dispensationalist theology that is found in the Left Behind novels and the writings of Hal Lindsey, among others. I found it a quick read, and Rossing certainly has some talent as a writer. The main message of the book can be found on ...more
Sep 04, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Keith Homstad
Mar 02, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone who is interested in "the rapture" stuff
Recommended to Keith by: I heard Rev. Rossing herself discuss it.
Rossing exposes the professional fear mongers who throw around quotes from the Book of Revelation - seemingly because it's a cheap way to drum up business for their "churches" financial demands. She is a first rate theologian in the mainstream of Western Christianity, with a good solid Lutheran head on her shoulders.
Tristan Sherwin
Jul 13, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
*The Rapture Exposed* is a full on exorcism of the damaging theology and practice that arises from adopting the end-times ideas espoused by the (sadly and revealingly) popular *Left Behind* series of novels.

Rev. Dr. Rossing examines the problems caused by adopting a Rapture-orientated, “dispensationalist” reading of the book of Revelation. A view that has become prevalent throughout the works published by Tim LaHaye (The *Left Behind* series) and Hal Lindsey (*The Late Great Planet Earth*). Not
Sandra D
Dec 05, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Sandra D by: Ginnie Jones
I always thought of these Rapture-ready folks as "fringe," but when your rug is over 50% fringe, it gets a bit unwieldy, doesn't it?

Anyway, I did enjoy Rossing's book and gained some new perspective from it, but for my more immediate purposes -- finding weapons to use in winning back some of my Left Behind-seduced loved ones -- I don't think it'll make a good loaner, for two reasons: Rossing injects some of her own lefty political views into the text, and also she dedicates the book to her husba
Sam McCabe
Dec 23, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed this book very much. Having said that, the reasons I didn't give it the full five stars was because it's at times pretty repetitive, and the author seems to be argue against the dispensational position in a very personal way that for some reason diminished the effect of what she was saying. I would recommend it for anyone looking to get into end times theology.
Jun 02, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
there is no rapture
Richard Erney
Aug 17, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I finally finished reading “The Rapture Exposed”! It was the longest 200 pages that I have read in recent memory. That was mainly because I was reading it in the evenings before bed & on a lot of occasions I would only read two maybe three pages before I fell asleep.
Overall, I thought it was a good read and yes, I particularly appreciated the message of hope at the end. It makes me want to re-read Revelation and compare it with the notes in the book.
I think that Barbara does a good job of debunk
Matt A
Jul 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: faith
Rock solid analysis of the words of God. My only criticism is that Rossing just needs to read like the simplest book on economics, as she has a great misunderstanding of the scientific field.

Strong points include interpreting often misunderstood Greek words by pointing to other uses within the Bible (this technique might have been the most valuable piece of the book for me, personally) and evaluating Scriptures (specifically in this case, eschatology) as written, rather than as a patchwork quil
Joel Jackson
Aug 28, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: biblical-studies
Barbara R. Rossing presents a well thought out alternative to the popular dispensationalist theology of the end times. In contrast to the rapture and violent 7 year period of tribulation, Rossing presents a theology of peace, in which the book of Revelation calls people to seek out God's justice in the midst of the evil in our world, especially that evil perpetrated by human empires. In this she seeks to redirect the Christian church from a tendency towards apathy in regards to our world. Instea ...more
Nov 06, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book was a "revelation" to me! John of Patmos had no intention to predict future end times.Dispensationalists base the rapture story on a few scriptures misinterpreted by many. John Darby started it about 180 years ago. The Left Behind series is a work of fiction based upon these distorted readings of the original intent of Revelations. I wish everyone, and especially Christians, would read this. God will not leave anyone behind! The countdown to Armageddon from 1948 is based upon this delu ...more
Teri Peterson
Sep 02, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: church, 2020
The second half of this book is excellent.
The first half spends more time describing what it’s refuting than actually dealing with biblical text...I can see why that was important in its time and place but ultimately that first half feels very bound to its context. The second half, though, where she talks about Revelation itself rather than repeating why dispensationalists are wrong, is great.
Jun 09, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: christian
Very interesting and plausible argument on the Rapture. There are so many theories on it and the end times. I've talked to my pastor about this and instead of taking a stance, he simply said just to be ready. Good advice. 😊
Aug 10, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: christianity
When reality is not good enough- or not persuasive enough- realistic fiction will often be used to convince people of a position. This tendency has worked wonders for those who espouse premillennialism with the Left Behind series written by LaHaye and Jenkins. The premillennialists have certainly seemed to gain a major victory with those books over the past few years, and even though they loosely claim to be fiction, not a few have followed after the premillennial view on account of the influenc ...more
Chuck Storla
Oct 21, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Does a great job exposing the flaws in the rapture theories.

Unfortunately, tries a bit too hard to make the book of Revelation about ecology.
Shiloh Morris
Dec 04, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I recommend this highly if you've ever been curious about the evangelical, theological idea of the Rapture and would like to dive deeper into the theology behind it.
Great book, and great church bookclub discussion. Dr. Rossing is an excellent New Testament scholar and gives a message of hope.
Feb 18, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The idea of the rapture and tribulation as the Baptists believe has only been around for about 200 years. The book made me really made me examine what scripture says to support the idea of rapture.
Robert Bennight
Oct 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Exposes the Left Behind and dispensationalist theology for what it is: a racket that comes from a perversion of scripture.
May 03, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is for a Sunday school class on Revelation. The first class was so enthralling, I stayed late and got to work late. We'll see if the book is as good as the class.

Struggled through the first chapter. I'm not appreciating the harsh, "they are wrong" attitude. I understand that is her point of view, but it's annoying to have it stated every paragraph. This one may not be completed.

Ok, decided that since this author was dead set against the Left Behind books, that I would re-read the first boo
Just A. Bean
Mar 19, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
If you feel frustrated with Dispensationalism and The Left Behind series' take on the Revelation of John, and want to see it taken apart brick by brick, this is the book for you. The author clearly and passionately pokes holes in more or less everything Hal Lidsey, Tim LaHaye and company have every written, with special emphasis on ethics and internal inconsistencies. On that level, I found it satisfying, if slightly laden with WRONG ON THE INTERNET (though notes say she was commissioned to pick ...more
Jul 27, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A truly paradigm-shifting book about "end times" theology. It was scriptural to the core, and this is only the beginning for a personal study of Revelation that I think will greatly challenge the popularized and prevalent "left behind" theology that appears to have hijacked American Christianity. I'm excited to begin this new exploration that was sparked by a few thoughts in Rob Bell and Don Golden's "Jesus Wants to Save Christians" (see pp. 131-134). Talk about digging deeper and getting to the ...more
J. Travis Moger
Oct 30, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nonfiction, religion
If you’re my age or a little older and grew up in an evangelical home, chances are you had the bejeezus scared out of you by end times films like A Thief in the Night and Hal Lindsay’s book The Late Great Planet Earth. The younger generation has the Left Behind series to give them nightmarish visions of the future. Yet when the Apostle Paul speaks of Jesus’ coming and our being caught up to meet him, he says, “Comfort one another with these words” (1 Thes. 4:18). Where’s the disconnect?

Barbara R
Apr 22, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: religious
Written in response to The Left Behind series, The Rapture Exposed critically examines the history of rapture theology and the Biblical texts manipulated by it to reveal how it was constructed and why it has become so exaggerated among certain Christian groups. My only issue is that Rossing proves her case in a few pages and then it becomes repetitive. I would have preferred more analysis of the Book of Revelation from the perspective of its actual theological meaning than so much reactionary cr ...more
Heidi Archer
Dec 16, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
So it turns out what you think about end times eschatology (no matter how tenuous the connection is or how deeply buried the world view is) can really skew the way you see others, yourself, the church, and the earth itself. Rossing clearly lays out why she calls dispensational fundamentalist eschatology dangerous and ultimately false. She defines the proper historical context for Revelation and defines what "apocalypse" and "prophecy" really means (Hint: not what John Darby, Hal Lindsay, or Tim ...more
Johnny Brooks
Barbara R. Rossing sets off to tell us the message of hope in the book of Revelation, but ends up giving us mostly a critique of Left Behind. Not that critiquing Left Behind is all that bad, I just would have preferred more interpretation of the actual book of Revelation. Still what she had to say was worthy of being said.

She starts off the book with a really great quote by Martin Luther, though I am not a huge Luther fan this quote is alright. “If I knew the world were going to end tomorrow I w
Scott Toney
Nov 04, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a very good book and as I read I was able to get a better view of Revelation and also 'rapture theology' than I ever had before. As someone who read The Left Behind series and was troubled by it, I can honestly say that Rossing has truly helped me better understand what is meant by Revelation and other parts of The Bible and for that I am extremely grateful to her. The most valuable part of this book for me was the historical context that Rossing explains Revelation was written around, r ...more
Paul Froehlich
Feb 26, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Contrary to the popular understanding, prophecy does not mean prediction of the future, Rossing explains. Instead, biblical prophecy is speaking God’s word, a word of salvation and justice for God’s people and for the world.

“The book of Revelation, with its predictive-sounding threats, was written to function in a way very similar to Jonah’s timely warning to Nineveh that ‘in just 40 days the great city will be destroyed.’ While Revelations prophetic threats sound concrete, their primary purpo
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Update on "The Rapture Exposed" 2 11 Oct 22, 2013 12:30PM  

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