As told by Ellis Weiner
By Steve Levy
Abridged by Barbara Davilman
By Evie Levy
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This item is a preorder. Your payment method will be charged immediately, and the product is expected to ship on or around November 3, 2008. This date is subject to change due to shipping delays beyond our control.
And that means one thing: investment opportunities!
For those who are not as expertly versed in the Book of Revelation, Ellis Weiner and Barbara Davilman, authors of the bestselling Yiddish with Dick and Jane, helpfully offer both illumination and advice: What exactly is the Rapture, anyway? How is it different from the Tribulation? Who are the Antichrist, the Four Horsemen, and the 144,000 male virgins, and what do they want? And, most important, how can I make money during the 7 years of societal breakdown before Armaggedon?
Taking the familiar form of a how-to investment guide, How to Profit From the Coming Rapture instructs those readers who will certainly be left behind (Jews, Catholics, Muslims, Buddhists, Hindus, less ardent Protestants, and many more) on how to exploit the inevitable demise of the world in order to make a tidy profit. Sure, the rivers and seas will run with blood, locusts will swarm, mountains will move all over the place, and famine will strike. But for the five billion of us left behind, the post-Rapture world will be a time of even more unique investment opportunities.
Disclaimer: We absolutely guarantee that the investment and financial advice in this book will bring you wealth, security, and success—but only once the Rapture takes place and is followed by the Tribulation. (And provided that you're still alive and on Earth.) Until then, just hang on. Study our recommendations, take notes, make a plan. But don't actually do anything that we suggest until the faithful are swept up to meet Jesus in the sky and the seven-year run-up to the end of civilization—or, rather, this civilization—gets under way.
Steve and Evie Levy
Disclaimer of the Disclaimer: The preceding Disclaimer is fraudulent, nonbinding, invalid, and completely bogus. Its "guarantee" of wealth, security, and success, whether during the Rapture and the Tribulation or at any other time, should be ignored. This book is for entertainment purposes only and should not be construed as offering any actual financial advice whatsoever. Steve and Evie Levy have no financial expertise. In terms of investments and the accumulation of personal wealth, they don't know what they're talking about. In fact, they don't even exist. We should know. We made them up.
Ellis Weiner and Barbara Davilman
Copyright © 2008 by Barbel, Inc.
All rights reserved. Except as permitted under the U.S. Copyright Act of 1976, no part of this publication may be reproduced, distributed, or transmitted in any form or by any means, or stored in a database or retrieval system, without the prior written permission of the publisher.
Little, Brown and Company
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First eBook Edition: November 2008
Little, Brown and Company is a division of Hachette Book Group, Inc. The Little, Brown name and logo are trademarks of Hachette Book Group, Inc.
Also by Steve and Evie Levy
How to Make Investments Like a Porn Star
Shriekonomics: Make Money on the Approaching Panic
"Green" Is Just "Greed" Misspelled:
Investment Wins in the New Eco-Economy
Also by Ellis Weiner and Barbara Davilman
Yiddish with Dick and Jane
Yiddish with George and Laura
How to Raise a Jewish Dog
(And a Few Notes on Financial Terms)
The Rapture can occur at any time. The subsequent Tribulation, however, cannot begin until the Antichrist (i.e., Satan's representative on Earth, about whom more later) signs a pact with Israel. Thus, in order for there to be a Tribulation—and the Apocalypse, the Second Coming, and the Millennium—there has to be a State of Israel. No wonder Christians the world over rejoiced in 1948.
The Tribulation officially begins when the Antichrist, as head of a world government, makes a seven-year covenant with Israel. That is why the creation of the State of Israel in 1948 was so wonderful for Christians as well as Jews. It set the stage for everything to come and fulfilled various prophecies, including Zephaniah 2:1–2, Ezekiel 38–39, and Isaiah 11:11–12.
Once Israel came into existence, Fundamentalist Dispensationalist Premillennialist Evangelical Christians the world over brought new vigor to a tireless vigil that continues to this very day, waiting and hoping for the end of the world. Who wouldn't, when you expect it to bring eternal salvation?
We're kind of looking forward to it, too, because we've got lots of financial plans ready to go once the seven-year Tribulation clock starts ticking. But before we can put them into action, we (and you) will have to rethink certain basic financial concepts. Here are the most important:
1. Time Frame: Normally, in financial matters, "long-term" refers to periods of time measurable in decades, and "short-term" investments usually last between one and five years. Seven years after the Tribulation begins, however, all investments will be over and most of the human race will be dead. And no one except readers of this book will know this is happening. (The Fundamentalist Christians who would know it will be in Heaven by then.) Therefore, by drastically compressing your time sense, you can obtain a significant advantage over the market.
That's why, once the Rapture happens, we want you to fine-tune your vocabulary so that
• "long-term" refers to anything lasting more than one year;
• "medium-term" refers to anything lasting between two and twelve months;
• "the near future" refers to anything taking place from the day after tomorrow until about two months later;
• "short-term" refers to anything starting now-ish and lasting until the end of the day, or maybe into the next morning on the West Coast;
• "immediately" refers to anything that as soon as you say "immediately" is twenty minutes too late, so never mind.
Result? While everyone else continues the habit of talking about "realizing steady growth over the ensuing ten-year cycle," you'll be talking about "getting a bunch of money on Thursday." And making it happen!
2. "Rainy-Day" Liquid Reserve: Today, many financial advisers suggest keeping enough money to cover about eight months' worth of expenses in a readily available form, usually a money market fund. This is commonly called a "rainy-day reserve," which is probably why such cash is referred to as being "liquid."
However, during the Tribulation, cash will be worth less and less, and liquids themselves will become more valuable. So use your reserve of liquid cash now to prepare your cache of reserved liquids (bottled water, soft drinks, alcoholic beverages, fruit juice, et cetera) for later.
3. Life Insurance: Most people don't need life insurance until they either get married or have children, and by then they can't afford to die. Bear in mind that once the Rapture takes place, the odds of anyone dying at any given time will be far less than the odds of almost everyone dying at once. Therefore, we recommend that you buy all the coverage you can afford. On everyone you know.
Shop around. Compare whole life for a limited term versus term for a whole lifetime. That way, if you survive, you'll be at least a little more glad to be alive.
4. Wills: Normally, a will is something carefully compiled in a spirit of solemnity and serious thought and only changed sporadically, over decades. This, of course, is because the prospect of our death feels both unpleasant to think about and remote in terms of its likelihood.
During the Tribulation, however, death—of your loved ones, your heirs and assigns, and even yourself—will be a daily part of life. Therefore, once the Rapture takes place, learn to think of your will not as a monumental document to be revised sporadically, if at all, but as a kind of ongoing, posthumous "to do" list. Post it on the refrigerator with attractive or whimsical magnets. Maybe clip a colorful, fun felt-tip pen to it for added convenience. Revisit it every day or even every few hours; modify and revise and "touch it up" to keep pace with your changing moods and circumstances. Consider employing a notary public in your home.
If you take the advice in the pages that follow, your estate will increase even as your list of people to leave it to is shrinking. Get into the habit of updating your will today and eventually you, or whoever you love and is left alive after you, will be glad you did.
Signs of the (End) Times
We know the Last Days are coming, if not actually here, because events around the world today have been predicted by various books of the Bible in remarkable detail.
The following chart lists some prescient predictions from Scripture, the relevant chapters and verses, and examples drawn from contemporary life. The accuracy of these prophecies speaks for itself.
|Predicted Phenomenon||Scriptural Citation||Characterized by...||Contemporary Examples|
|Godlessness||2 Timothy 3:1–7||Men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy||Just about everybody we know, plus our kids|
|False messiahs and false prophets||Matthew 24:5, 24:11||Deceiving many||David Koresh, Jim Jones, Sun Myung Moon, Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh, L. Ron Hubbard, Pat Robertson, Warren Jeffs, Jerry Falwell, George W. Bush|
|Wars and rumors of wars||Matthew 24:6||Will come to pass, but the end is not yet (i.e., there will be wars, but not the War)||The War on Poverty, the Cola Wars, the War on Drugs, the War on Terror, the Culture War, the War on Christmas, the War on Illegal Immigration|
|Famines, pestilences, earthquakes||Matthew 24:7||In divers places||Famine in Africa; food riots in Haiti, Bangladesh, Egypt; bee colony collapse around the US; earthquakes in Indonesia, Central America, California, and China; cyclone in Myanmar; also Hurricane Katrina, rats in Manhattan, and little earthquakes we can't remember|
Obviously, if the Last Days haven't started by now, they probably will tomorrow. So we want you to invest accordingly.
IN GODLESSNESS WE TRUST
Buy stock in companies that service the godlessness sector. Look for
• companies that provide goods and services that godly people disapprove of, or at least say they disapprove of, such as liquor, pornography, gambling (horse racing, "gaming," lotteries), and condoms and other forms of birth control;
• anything involved with "our godless secular culture," such as television, movies, popular music, video games, graphic novels, Broadway, Off Broadway, Off Off Broadway, regional theater, dance, puppet shows, cartoons, stand-up comedy, and clip art on placemats in diners;
• companies that serve or help to advance the gay agenda;
• anything scientific;
• companies that publish books by, about, or for atheists, feminists, liberals, wizards, intellectuals, urban sophisticates, vampires, serial killers, Europeans, Gen X, Gen Y, Gen Z, and any other Gen that comes along.
PROFIT FROM PROPHETEERING™
The craze for ordinary people to present themselves as either a prophet of God or as the Messiah Himself offers excellent opportunities for the small entrepreneur. Here are two businesses you can start with a minimal outlay of capital, as part of an approach we call Propheteering:
1. TGID ("Thank God It's Doomsday"): As you'll see in later chapters, when the Antichrist arises, he will be assisted by someone the Bible refers to as the False Prophet. Until then, however, a series of bogus messengers of God will emerge whom the Bible also refers to as "false prophets." For the sake of clarity we will refer to these fraudulent prophets as "phony prophets." Here is a clever, legal, and low-cost way to realize authentic profits from phony prophets:
• Find a phony prophet and his followers (Google "Christian prophet" and skim the 1,790,000 Web sites). Wait until he or she predicts a specific day on which the world will end.
• Two weeks before the appointed date, move into the phony prophet's neighborhood and rent several self-storage units and a panel truck or a van. Hire two strong college kids.
• Advertising it as a "Doomsday Buy-a-Thon," visit the "prophet's" followers and offer to buy their appliances, home electronics, et cetera, for cash. Offer lowball prices and bottom dollar. (Sample sales line: "What do you need a washer-dryer for? You're going to Heaven!") Store their items in your rented lockers, taking special care to note who owned what.
• Wait for the predicted end of the world to come and go without incident—which, of course, it will. Remember, this is a phony prophet, not a real one.
• Return to the faithful with a big "Red-Letter Redemption Event." Let them "redeem" their former possessions at a nice markup. If, for example, you bought Jim and Donna's thirty-eight-inch Panasonic TV for $100, sell it back to them for $175. Be sure to remind them that they're not buying "a pig in a poke." They're purchasing their own stuff.
• Pay the college kids, pocket your profits, and get out of town.
• Repeat elsewhere.
2. Savior Self: When it comes to false messiahs, there will be two kinds of people: those who truly think they are the Messiah, and those who know they're not but want others to think they are. Either way, they're going to need props, costumes, and other supplies—which you can provide.
MIND YOUR OWN BUSINESS
• You call it: Messiah-in-a-Box or "Mess" Kits
• You sell: Complete outfits for self-proclaimed messiahs
• You offer: Gear and props for all aspects of the role, including:
The Walk: The most successful messiahs wear some sort of Middle Eastern robe and crude sandals but not flip-flops. Your customers will also appreciate the "Desert Madman" glue-on beard and "Wandering the Wilderness" shepherd's staff or crook. But people have also become familiar with other messianic "looks" as well, including the Messiah from Outer Space (jumpsuit, Nikes).
The Talk: No one will give the time of day—let alone lifelong religious devotion—to a "messiah" who talks like Ryan Seacrest or Miss South Carolina. Include a list of Useful Messianic Phrases that can be employed not only in preaching but in everyday conversation, such as "Rejoice, and be exceedingly glad, for behold: Flank steak is on sale," and "Suffer the little children to come unto me, that I may give unto them a time out, that they might shut up for five lousy minutes."
The Gawk: Include a chart (or, better, an instructional DVD) of Basic Holy Facial Expressions, including "Woe at Man's Sinfulness," "Righteous Wrath at the Unholy," "Infinite Pity for the Oppressed," "High Indignation at Hypocrites," and "Staring Off into Space, Overwhelmed by Love for Mankind."
WAR? HOT DOG!
As everyone knows, you can't go wrong investing in companies that profit from war (weapons and tech companies, uniform manufacturers, et cetera). But you now know there will be rumors of war. By investing accordingly, you can get a real jump on the market.
Start with the obvious—survival goods, such as duct tape, home medical kits, bottled water, self-powered radios, and electric generators. Where do people buy these items? Increasingly, they do so at national chains like Home Depot and Lowe's. So a "basic rumors-of-war" investment is in hardware retailers.
Then take it a step further. If national hardware chains are going to thrive as war rumors spread, who else will? That's right: all the little snack wagons that appear in front of those big mega–hardware stores to service the customer traffic. Here, then, is an investment tip right from the Bible: The more rumors of war there are, the more people will buy hot dogs—which means the more you should invest in snack cart supplies.
The graph below offers our suggestion as to how to apportion your rumors-of-war snack cart portfolio.
INVESTING IN RUMORS OF WAR: SAMPLE SNACK CART PORTFOLIO
As you can see, we decided to put the balance of our hypothetical stake in "Hot Dogs," which are a perennial favorite with kids as well as adults, and "Buns," which includes both hot dog and hamburger buns. You may disagree. You may, for example, wish to eliminate "Sauerkraut" entirely and focus more on the "Hamburgers" component of the snack cart sector if you somehow happen to know that your community prefers ground beef. Feel free to adjust the numbers to suit your personal investment style.
We keep saying, "The Rapture is coming," so you're entitled to ask, "Great—so how can I make money on that knowledge now, before it actually takes place?"
Good question. And we have an answer.
The people who expect themselves to be Raptured up constitute a highly specific customer base. In all this excitement, they might not (understandably) have thought of one thing: Who is going to tidy up their affairs once they're gone?
Meaning: Who will take care of their un-Raptured pets, feeding and loving them for the rest of their lives, or placing them in loving, if less devoutly Christian, homes? Their friends? Their relatives? But they'll be Raptured, too. Either that or they'll be too devastated to do much more than cry out to the Lord with great lamentation.
That's where you can provide a valuable service.
MIND YOUR OWN BUSINESS
• You call it: PerPETual Care
• You sell: Post-Rapture pet care policies, renewable annually
• You offer: Care and feeding of the pet for its lifetime or guaranteed placement in a loving, safe home
Start local, expand to regional, then maybe franchise it nationally.
FEARFULLY ASKED QUESTIONS (FAQ)
Q. I'm about to buy a home. Should I opt for an adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM), on the assumption that it will only go up a little, because Jesus will come within seven years and pay it off for me?
A. No. Although the Rapture is imminent, we don't know exactly when it will take place, and you could be facing several rate increases on your ARM before it gets here.
Besides, even when the Tribulation ends and Jesus does arrive, He will not pay off your mortgage. We may not be Christians, but even we know that that's not what He is "all about." Therefore we suggest getting a fixed-rate mortgage with a monthly payment you know you will be able to afford until the end of the world. But if you haven't yet gotten into the real estate market, stay out. Why sink your cash into a down payment and the upkeep of a house if apocalyptic devastation is around the corner? Keep renting.
Q. I'm interested in investing in godlessness. Where can I get a copy of the Gay Agenda?
A. In any religious bookstore.
Up, Up, and Away
Some people question the very reality of the Rapture because, they point out, the word rapture doesn't appear in any English translation of the Bible. And that's true. It doesn't.
But as writers of many books, we know how easy it is for words to get lost or misplaced when you're going from one draft to the next, and from one language to another. Considering how old the Bible is, and how many drafts it probably went through, it's amazing more words didn't get left out. Besides, the words e-mail, playoffs, and Botox don't appear in the Bible, either, and we know they refer to real things.
By the way, there will be many who question our discussion of the Rapture here, at this point in the chronology. There is widespread disagreement over when the Rapture will occur with regard to the seven-year-long Tribulation. One opinion (the so-called Mid-Trib view) holds that the Rapture will not take place until halfway through the Tribulation. Those who subscribe to the Pre-Wrath view believe that the Rapture will occur three-quarters of the way into the Tribulation, and the Post-Trib school insists that the Rapture will occur only at the very end of the Tribulation. There are other, more esoteric views as well.
We're sticking with the Pre-Trib notion that the Rapture will precede and herald the Tribulation. It seems to be the most widely accepted and is the one illustrated in the Left Behind books.
(These novels, written by pastor Tim LaHaye and writer Jerry B. Jenkins, began in 1995 with Left Behind, about a band of plucky Christians who find themselves still on Earth after the Rapture has transported some of their loved ones to Heaven. Over the course of twelve sequels, airline pilot Rayford Steele and other characters struggle to survive as the Tribulation unfolds. The series also includes three prequels, several graphic novels, and, for younger readers, twelve Left Behind for Kids titles. In all, the franchise has sold more than 65 million books. We can't argue with those kinds of numbers. If the Rapture is Pre-Trib to the Left Behind community, it's Pre-Trib to us, too.)
Having said all that, we face the basic question: What makes anyone think there will be a Rapture at all?
The description of the Rapture comes mainly in three quotes from Scripture: 1 Corinthians 15:51–54 (52: In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed), 1 Thessalonians 4:16–17 (16: For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first. 17: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord), and John 14:2–3.
Who Gets to Go
Only Christians will be eligible to be Raptured to Heaven, but not just any Christians. This experience will be reserved for those who have been "saved"—i.e., who have admitted that they are sinners, have conceded that they can be redeemed only by allowing Christ into their hearts, have embraced the idea that salvation is a matter of faith alone (and not "works"), and have accepted Christ as their personal savior. Catholics, in other words—with their huge church hierarchy, their pope, their confession and absolution and so forth—are not included. Most Protestants are not included, either.
- On Sale
- Nov 3, 2008
- Page Count
- 224 pages
- Little, Brown and Company