1 Thessalonians 4:16-18 For the Lord himself will descend from heaven with a cry of command, with the voice of an archangel, and with the sound of the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive, who are left, will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we will always be with the Lord. Therefore encourage one another with these words.
- For some Christians, ‘rapture anxiety’ can take a lifetime to heal
- “This is a real thing. It’s a chronic problem,” he says of rapture anxiety. “This is a new area of study, but in general, our research has revealed that religious trauma leads to an increase of anxiety, depression, paranoia and even some OCD-like behaviors: ‘I need to say this prayer of salvation so many times,’ ‘I need to confess my sins so often.’”
- “Now imagine,” he continues, “You are taught that at any minute, you could be left here on Earth. What does that do to the teenager who just had premarital sex, or even simply took the Lord’s name in vain?”
- Slade says suffering in silence, and the threat of losing one’s entire community, compounds religious trauma
- It can also lead people to redefine their faith, or abandon it altogether. The number of Americans identifying as Christian has been steadily dropping for years. A 2022 Pew Research Survey estimates about 64% of Americans identify as Christians, but that number could drop below half by 2070 – and could be surpassed by a majority population with no religious affiliation.
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