RELIGION
10/03/2014 05:48 pm ET Updated Oct 04, 2014

Rapture Rhapsody: Is 'Left Behind' Really A Christian Movie? (PODCAST)

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Welcome to the HuffPost Religion Podcast All Together hosted by Executive Religion Editor Rev. Paul Raushenbush. All Together offers a unique perspective into spiritual and religious individuals, communities and ideas that are shaping our world.

This week’s show is called Rapture Rhapsody and examines the 31 million dollar blockbuster movie ‘Left Behind’, staring Nicolas Cage, that will hit 1,750 theaters across the country. The film is based on the 'Left Behind' books by Jerry B. Jenkins and Tim Lahye, who made millions on this apocalyptic story.

In addition to making money, the hope of the producers is that the film will be an opportunity for people to be introduced to Christianity, with the potential for conversions. As "Duck Dynasty" star Willie Robertson declared in a promotional video about the film, "Opening the door to unbelievers has never been this much fun."

But how do the ideas behind the Left Behind franchise square with mainstream Christian theology and what influence do popular movies like Left Behind have on the way the wider public – both Christian and non-Christians - understands the Christian religion?

Raushenbush speaks with Princeton University religion professor Elaine Pagels, Biblical Scholar Craig Keener, and Film and Religion expert Prof. John Lyden who explain where the ‘Left Behind’ ideas came from and why they might be leading viewers of the new film astray.

RAPTURE RHAPSODY: IS LEFT BEHIND REALLY A CHRISTIAN MOVIE?

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