FIFTY WAYS TO LEAVE LEFT BEHIND is a book by Southern Baptist Roger Snow and presents an opposing presentation to the views represented in the LEFT BEHIND series by Tim LaHaye and Jerry Jenkins. FIFTY WAYS traces fifty parallels between Exodus and Revelation to demonstrate that Revelation follows the pattern of Exodus from beginning to end.
Both Exodus and Revelation begin with tribulation, both books begin with a prophet in exile, both prophets have a burning bush experience, both prophets tell of a promised-land, both lead to great plagues on the wicked, both feature two prominent witnesses, both show a woman escaping from a dragon on the wings of an eagle after which she is married to the LORD. The first book begins with twelve tribes and ends with seven lamps in the new tabernacle, the second begins with seven lamps and ends with twelve tribes in the new temple.
Seeing these parallels enables one to see that Revelation follows a consistent story line and makes it untenable to break the book up into different segments for different eras of history or for different nationalities as is necessary for the logic of the LEFT BEHIND series.
There are a couple of reviews posted at Amazon.com and there is a review by Dr. Walter G. Nunn printed in The Alabama Baptist January 17 issue. Endorsers include Dr. Frank Page (recent president of the SBC), the late Dr. Robert G. Witty (Founder and first president of Luther Rice Seminary), and Dr. David Garland (Baylor University). I would highly recommend you at least read the book to broaden your perspective regarding end time discussions.
Some of the questions author Roger Snow raises include:
Should we expect that babies will be raptured from the earth before the Great Tribulation begins?One of the reasons we must work hard to keep the Southern Baptist Convention free to debate, discuss and disagree over tertiary matters is to help create and foster an environment where authors like Roger Snow can challenge us to examine what we say we believe. In the end, we are all better theologians when we are challenged to think through our areas of beliefs. I just hope and pray we have a spirit of love toward those with whom we may ultimately disagree.
• If babies are raptured to avoid the harsh events of the tribulation, would it be reasonable to conclude that no babies would be born for the next seven years for the same reasons?
• Would that indicate that God showed more mercy to those babies than to Holocaust babies or babies down through history who died in wars or famines?
Why did the Apostles think it so urgent to name a new apostle to replace Judas?
• Were they expecting to rule on twelve thrones?
When Jesus said the vineyard (kingdom of God) would be taken away from them and given to those who would produce its fruit, to whom was he speaking?
• To whom was that vineyard (kingdom of God) given?
• If the stewardship of the vineyard (kingdom of God) changed hands, how could it be thought of as being postponed?
If we regard these times as being the worst of all times because of the evil we see, what period in the history of the world would we regard as being better?
• When did the world begin to get worse and worse? Is this a proper way for us to think?
If sun, moon and stars were regarded as symbols of the Jewish family in Joseph’s prophetic dream, why wouldn’t we think that failure of the sun, moon and stars in Jesus prophecy or in John’s vision referred to the blotting out of the Old Covenant Jewish Order?
If John’s being caught up to Heaven in Revelation 4 represented the rapture of the church, wouldn’t it be logical to say that John represented the church at the coronation of Christ in chapter five?
• If John represents the church in both those places wouldn’t one have to conclude that the church will be forced into extreme weeping immediately after entering Heaven?
• Associated with this line of thought one would have to ask how any angel in Heaven does not currently know that Jesus is Worthy? How could such a question remain unanswered long enough to reduce John (the church) to weeping?
Should the woes pronounced by Jesus in Matt. 23 and 24 be considered a curse on Jerusalem and Judaism?
• What did Jesus mean when He told the women of Jerusalem …weep for yourselves and your children…?
When Jesus held “this generation guilty of all the blood from Abel to Zechariah” was He including those of “this generation” of Matt 24:34?
• Are all generations equal in righteousness or evil?
Did the believers just after Pentecost sell houses and lands anticipating the destruction that Jesus had predicted? Were they selling while the times were still good?
If branches were broken off and Gentiles were grafted in, what were they grafted into?
• What did the tree represent?
• If the tree represented the holy remnant, then who was the remnant in the first century?
• If the believing Jews represented the remnant in the first century, then how did we come to think of unbelieving Jews as representing the remnant in the twenty-first century?
If Pentecost was the “last days” spoken of by Joel the prophet, then what was it the last days of?
If Jesus made clear to the Apostles that their rule was not to be like the Gentiles (lording it over people) then why do our models of end times demand that the kingdom come that way?
If Paul said that the gospel had been preached to every creature under heaven (Col 1:23) then wasn’t Paul saying that Jesus words about the gospel being preached to the whole world had been fulfilled in his day?
How could the writer of Hebrews speak of living at the consummation of the ages?
If Revelation 20 and the Great Judgment are followed chronologically by the descent of the New Jerusalem (heaven) and the literal presence of the throne in chapter twenty two, then where do the barbarians of chapter twenty two come from, since all the wicked were cast into Hell in chapter twenty?
If we can only have success after Jesus is physically present, then why did He tell the disciples that it was better for Him to go away?
In His Grace,