Left Behind Wiki
Advertisement

Apostasy is the abandonment or renunciation of a religious or political belief. In Christianity, it is the rejection of Christianity by someone who formerly was a Christian. The term apostasy comes from the Greek word apostasia ("ἀποστασία") meaning defection, departure, revolt or rebellion. It has been described as "a willful falling away from, or rebellion against, one's previous faith." One can conceive of the disciple Peter as an "apostate" when he denied Jesus Christ three times the night before Jesus' crucifixion.

The Bible speaks of a time near the Second Coming of Jesus when there will be people who will fall away from the faith, "giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons" (1 Timothy 4:1), as mentioned by Paul the apostle in 1st Timothy. The Olivet Discourse also says that the love of most (likely their religious zeal or piety) would grow cold before the coming of the Son of Man, but those who persevere to the end would be saved.

Various religious groups such as cults would label those who once were part of their religion but end up rejecting it as apostates. A small number of Islamic countries today have legal penalties for apostasy of Islam, including the death penalty.

It is not clear how the ecumenical council of Enigma Babylon One World Faith would handle this issue. Pontifex Maximus Peter Mathews addressed the crowd of the 144,000 in Teddy Kollek Stadium after landing in the stadium on helicopter with Leon Fortunato and Nicolae Carpathia (with Mac McCullum piloting it) interrupting Tsion Ben Judah's speech, Mathews urged the crowd to join the Enigma One World Babylon Faith and that he will defend their right to oppose and disagree, expressing hope that they will find the "multilayered plural godhead" of Enigma Babylon in their own fashion.

In the Left Behind series, a good deal of so-called Christians that were left behind during the Rapture eventually committed apostasy and believed in the doctrine of the "inherent goodness of humanity" that was espoused by Enigma Babylon during the early part of the Tribulation, the chief of whom was the religion's Pontifex Maximus Peter Mathews. It is not known how many came out of that religion to become true Christians through the exposure of the true gospel, but by the latter half of the Tribulation, Enigma Babylon was replaced by Carpathianism, which drew in people by huge numbers, although some would later regret their taking the "mark of loyalty". In Left Behind: The Kids, Janie McCanyon and Darrion Stahley were adherents of Enigma Babylon, but they converted to Christianity and became members of the Young Tribulation Force. Marlene Vetter also converted to Christianity from Enigma Babylon.

When a Christian who has the seal of God faces taking the mark of loyalty under penalty of death by the guillotine, God would grant that person the grace and courage to refuse the mark and accept martyrdom. That person cannot consciously elect to take the mark of the beast. Therefore, apostasy would not be possible for one with the mark of the believer during the Tribulation. In some interpretations of Christian soteriology, it is impossible for a saved Christian to become an apostate because that person had been elected by God before the foundation of the world (Ephesians 1:4-5) to be justified and glorified (Romans 8:29-30). Since the elected are saved by an omnipotent God who dispenses irresistible grace, it would be impossible for them to fall away since God would give them the grace to persevere. Therefore, those who did identify as Christians and became apostates were not among those who were elected by God for eternal life.

Advertisement