Tim LaHaye is one of the most influential religious leaders in the United States today. In 2001, Evangelical Studies Bulletin named him as the most influential Christian leader for the past quarter century. He is mostly known for the Left Behind series of apocalyptic fiction, which he co-wrote with Jerry B. Jenkins. However, this paper will talk about LaHaye’s book, The Battle for the Mind, which is one of his most important works but was not included in the Left Behind series.
In The Battle for the Mind, which was published in 1980, LaHaye discusses how conservative Christians could “take back America” around a conservative political agenda, and from the standpoint of the field of anthropology, focuses on the struggle with modernity among those who reject it, although LaHaye was unlikely to be thinking in those terms. In this book, LaHaye clearly identifies what he sees as the real enemy of American Christians. He uses the phrase “secular humanism” to describe the enemy, but gives it a new conspiratorial definition. Simply defined, humanism is man’s attempt to solve his problems independently of God. According to LaHaye, humanism seems so credible and logical to the man who does not understand God’s wisdom, that it is adopted readily by the masses. He also believes that today’s wave of crime and violence can be laid right at the door of secular humanism.
Tim LaHaye stated, “unless our nation’s leaders and a sufficient number of American citizens become aware of the truth about humanism, it will ultimately lead to anarchy, and our culture will be destroyed”. He also mentions Dr. Francis Schaeffer and how he has warned people that the ultimate end of humanism is always chaos. Therefore, LaHaye asks people to believe and be aware that there is a monolithic group of humanists in America who have as their single agenda the destruction of Christian faith, family values, and democratic freedoms.
On the opening pages of The Battle for the Mind, LaHaye wrote, “Most people today do not realize what humanism really is and how it is destroying our culture, families, country-and one day the entire world”. When this book was published in 1980, he wrote “unless American Christians wake up to who the enemy really is, the humanists will accomplish their goal of a complete...