TRIBULATION FORCE, ASSEMBLE!: Left Behind Chapter 23

Posted on March 21, 2016 by

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Buck heads to Chicago to find a replacement for Lucinda Washington where he immediately finds the perfect candidate:

News of his becoming their boss had swept the place, and he was greeted with coolness by Lucinda Washington’s former assistant, a young woman in sensible shoes. She told him in no uncertain terms, “Plank did nothing about replacing Lucinda, so I assumed I would move into her slot.”

I like this woman’s style. Her sensible shoes and position as an assistant make her the prime candidate to be the next editor given a replacement hasn’t been chosen yet.  “You didn’t pick anybody else, so obviously it’s me!” Iron clad.

Unfortunately, Buck is like, “Hard pass.” His loss.

While at the Chicago headquarters, Buck watches the news with his staff where we all find out all of Carpathia’s demands were met, so he is “reluctantly” going to be secretary general of the U.N.

The CNN anchor continued, “Among other developments today, there are rumors of the organization of groups espousing one world government. Carpathia was asked if he aspired to a position of leadership in such an organization.

Of course, Carpathia is like, “I would never dream to be in such a position unless everyone wanted me to be…” So obviously in like a week he’ll be running the world. I get that times have a’changed, but I don’t buy that all the nations would just be like, “Yup, let’s make all these changes with no discussion whatsoever.”

…the staff of Global Weekly’s Chicago bureau seemed in a mood to party. “This is the first time in years I’ve felt optimistic about society,” one reporter said.

Another added, “This has to be the first time I’ve smiled since the disappearances. We’re supposed to be objective and cynical, but how can you not like this? It’ll take years to effect all this stuff, but someday, somewhere down the line, we’re going to see world peace. No more weapons, no more wars, no more border disputes or bigotry based on language or religion. Whew! Who’d have believed it would come to this?”

 

AND PEACE AND LOVE REIGNED ACROSS THE LAND AND ALL THE REPORTERS REJOICED.

Steve calls Buck and tells him Carpathia wants him at his big meeting tomorrow where he’ll be selecting his ten U.N. delegates. Buck will be the only member of the press there because Carpathia really likes him! Carpathia also requests Buck bring Hattie with him. It’s going downnnn.

We then check in on Rayford, who for once is actually happy because now Chloe is studying the bible with him. Thanks to Buck, Chloe is a true believer now. So true, that Bruce asks if she’s interested in being part of his super important inner-circle of Church members…

“What are you getting at,” Rayford asked. “Going on the offensive?”

“Something like that. It’s one thing to hide in here, studying, figuring out what’s
going on so we can keep from being deceived. It’s great to pray for the witnesses
springing up out of Israel, and it’s nice to know there are other pockets of believers
all over the world. But doesn’t part of you want to jump into the battle?”

Rayford was intrigued but not sure. Chloe was more eager. “A cause,” she said.

“Something not just to die for but to live for.”

“Yes!”

“A group, a team, a force,” Chloe said.

“You’ve got it. A force.”

They’re going to form a Christian rock band!

“The Tribulation,” Bruce said.

“So your little group inside the group, a sort of Green Berets, would be your
Tribulation force.”

“Tribulation Force,” Bruce said, looking at Rayford and rising to scribble it on his
flip chart. “I like it.

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It’s going to be so much fun! Travelling the world. Singing about Jesus. Figuring out who the Antichrist is. THIS IS GONNA BE GREAT!!!

“Make no mistake, it won’t be fun. It would be the most
dangerous cause a person could ever join. We would study, prepare, and speak out.
When it becomes obvious who the Antichrist is, the false prophet, the evil,
counterfeit religion, we’ll have to oppose them, speak out against them. We would
be targeted. Christians content to hide in basements with their Bibles might escape
everything but earthquakes and wars, but we will be vulnerable to everything.”

Okay so maybe it’s not going to be as fun as I expected, which is weird, because everything about this book is so fun.

I also would definitely want to be someone hiding in the basement escaping as much bad shit as possible. Well, everything aside from earthquakes and war. I’m surprised he didn’t mention famine or plague, but I guess Bruce knows that I would stock my basement up with the best food and wash my hands a lot to avoid the plague.

Buck shows up later to talk to Bruce. They recap their lives to one another, and together, they finally determine that OBVIOUSLY Carpathia is the Antichrist.

Buck had heard much of the information about the Rapture and the two
witnesses, and he had picked up snippets about the Antichrist. But when Bruce got
to the parts about the great one world religion that would spring up, the lying, socalled peacemaker who would bring bloodshed through war, the Antichrist who
would divide the world into ten kingdoms, Buck’s blood ran cold. He fell silent, no
longer peppering Bruce with questions or comments. He scribbled notes as fast as
he could.

Did he dare tell this unpretentious man that he believed Nicolae Carpathia could be
the very man the Scriptures talked about? Could all this be coincidental? His fingers
began to shake when Bruce told of the prediction of a seven year pact between
Antichrist and Israel, of the rebuilding of the temple, and even of Babylon
becoming headquarters for a new world order

Luckily, Buck speaks up and clues Bruce in on everything from the prophecy that came true today because Bruce is the one person who didn’t listen to the news. He also didn’t answer any phone calls, conveniently.

Bruce tries to talk Buck out of going to the meeting tomorrow because he thinks that spiritually and physically he will be unsafe especially since he’s still unsure about accepting Christ. He’s sure that Carpathia is the Antichrist, but he’s not sure he’s ready to accept Christ. What the fuck, Buck?

Also, I love how like two chapters ago, Bruce was like, “Carpathia? Probz totally awesome.” But now:

Buck: “You think Carpathia is this Antichrist?”

Bruce: “I don’t see how I could come to any other conclusion.”

Oh, yeah, now you say that. Buck is like, “I can’t believe I believed in him!” And Bruce reminds him what a great deceiver he is, like now he can totally see through Carpathia’s bullshit. He’s not like, “Oh, I fell for that shit too. He got me good!” Fuck you, Bruce.

Bruce also recaps the part about the Tribulation Force to Buck, and he’s so into it.

The idealist, the maverick in him, gravitated toward such ideas, but he caught
himself before he talked himself into becoming a believer in Christ just because of
an exciting little club he could join.

Again, he believes Carpathia is the Antichrist, is super into the Tribulation Force idea, but is like, “I can’t join because I don’t want to just join because of this super awesome club.” Come onnnnnn.

But Buck does ask Bruce to give him a bible, so he’s close.

Also, we find out that the next day, Bruce and the rest of his congregation discuss whether Carpathia could be the Antichrist, and in the most anticlimactic line ever…

No one could argue otherwise.

THAT’S FUCKING IT? They all unanimously agree on who the freaking Anticrist is, and that’s all? No one could argue otherwise? At least have someone gasp or something. That’s all I’m asking.

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Posted in: Left Behind