Doomsday Preppers Put Faith in God and Plan for the End of All Things

Northern Idaho has a low population density, one of the attractive qualities for those drawn to the American Redoubt movement. Photo by Tracy Simmons

Twenty years ago mass panic swept the globe as 1999 came to a close and programmers scrambled to fix faulty technology that some presumed would send society into disarray at the strike of midnight.

Some believed “Y2K” would be doomsday.

But when the new millennium began, networks — and daily life — continued as normal.

Survivalist author Jim, Rawles — who lives off grid somewhere in the Pacific Northwest and who prefers to separate his given name and his family name with a comma — said the frenzy was a good thing.

If it weren’t for the hype, he said, tech companies wouldn’t have put the time and resources into remediating the computer codes, and the effect would have been catastrophic for the banking systems.

Two decades later Rawles is helping people, mostly Christians, prepare for whatever could be the next disaster heading toward civilization.

James Wesley, Rawles.
Courtesy photo

His website,, has 100,000 regular visitors.

“It’s common sense,” he said. “The government has proven itself time and again woefully inadequate when it comes to disaster relief. You can’t depend on the government. You’re on your own.”

He said it’s up to heads of families to find a way to provide.

Rawles lives with his wife in a lightly populated area in the Inland Northwest, where they home-school their children, grow their own food, raise livestock, hunt and fish. He wouldn’t say where they live, and he uses a Georgia phone number so as to not give any hints.

As part of the American Redoubt movement, he advocates for others to do the same. Not just for family preparedness, but also for political reasons.

American Redoubt, he explained, is a migration movement that encourages like-minded people to relocate to the Inland Northwest so they can be in a geographically safe area and make that area more conservative.

For example, he explained, the Palouse — a pastoral region in southeastern Washington and northern Idaho — has miles of pea, wheat and lentil fields with hydroelectric dams nearby. It’s also generally free of natural disasters, like hurricanes and earthquakes.

The Palouse in southeastern Washington. Photo by Lynn Suckow/Creative Commons

“The other goal is to take an already conservative Christian area and make it more conservative  by encouraging conservatives coast to coast to move here,” he said, “to make a red state a deeper shade of red.”

The Redoubt movement is growing, but because many choose to live off grid, it’s hard to know just how much.

“Conservative Christian families tend to have large families, so demographically we’ve already won the war.  If liberals moving here have 1.8 children and we have 3.5, we win,” he said.

His forthcoming book, “The Ultimate Preppers Survival Guide,” explains “how to survive in the short term as society begins to collapse, and how to thrive in the long term.”

Rawles said those who can’t afford to move out of a big city can still prepare by storing a minimum of four months of food and, most importantly, keeping a water filter on hand.

And although Rawles does believe collapse of society is near, he doesn’t wade into Armageddon prophecy — though many preppers do.

However, he does believe we are living closer to the end times than ever, “and we need to be prepared spiritually and physically.”

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Source: Religion News Service