“Waiting for Armageddon” will be screened at the NY Jewish Film Festival in January 2009. This fascinating and absorbing documentary brings us into the personal lives of extreme Evangelical Christians. It is a troubling film and I would recommend seeing it.
These Christian fundamentalists believe that the Jewish people and the state of Israel will play a central role in an apocalypse that will happen so soon, that they believe that their own children do not have time to grow to adulthood before the destruction of the world. The film also examines the effect of Christian fundamentalism on American policy in the Mideast.
The film travels with them from their homes and churches in America to Israel and we hear their alarming views, such as their happy expectation that the Dome of the Rock will be destroyed at any moment. We stand with them on peaceful looking Har Megiddo in Israel, which is the Armageddon of the Christian Bible, as they happily anticipate the ingathering and total destruction of the Jewish people closely followed by the destruction of everyone else in the world who does not believe as they do. They have that weird glow in their eyes of strange cultists with sweet smiles.
Christianity teaches that God is love, yet these fundamentalists are steeped in a happy anticipation of graphic, cruel, death and destruction by means of horrible violence. The film asserts that there are about 50 million American Christian fundamentals of this sort. They seem to be close cousins of the Americans who believe in alien abductions, although the “abductees” are not as violent in their visions.
Both groups seem to have mental health issues. Perhaps a poor adjustment to the truly hard realities of the world. A therapist friend says that the “abductees” are pshychotic, that is they are already living in a complete delusion while the “Soon-To-be-Raptureds” have a different disorder: they are incomplete as individuals and are afraid of disappearing or being erased.
Watching the fundamentalists at home, indoctrinating their children, raises questions about what kind of parents they might be considering that they believe these children will not reach adulthood. It is very troubling.
The film includes a clip of Ehud Olmert happily welcoming these nuts to Israel, how extremely naive Olmert appears in this film. It is said that you should choose your enemies with care, this goes for choosing friends as well.
A Jewish extremist who would like to rebuild the Third Temple on the site of the Dome of the Rock and re-establish the ancient rituals of animal sacrifice appears in the film. The Jewish people substituted prayer for sacrifice 2 millenia ago. I wish he had been better defined in this film so as to be clear that here presents a minority of extremists. Main stream Judaism hopes for a Messianic Age brought about by the positive actions of people, such as treating each other with compassion, and not by apocolypse, Armageddon, animal sacrifice, or tearing down other’s sacred places etc.
It is creepy to watch these Christian fundamentalists who are so normal looking, and seemingly educated people happily expecting the most violent end of the world and death of millions of human beings.