Bestselling author Jerry Jenkins, coauthor of the End Times-based Left Behind series, continues his interest in biblical narratives with his newest fiction series The Dead Sea Chronicles. Book 1, Dead Sea Rising, will be published in October by Worthy Publishing Group.

The Dead Sea Chronicles continues themes from Left Behind, which sold over 63 million copies and included 16 books in the adult series, a young adult series and other products. Left Behind fictionalized the End Times as recorded in the biblical book of Revelation. Worthy has published several other Jenkins novels including The Valley of Dry Bones (2016) and Empire’s End (2015),

The publishing house, which also owns the Museum of the Bible Books imprint, approached him with the idea for the new series, said Jenkins. ““One major stimulus has been the phenomenal interest by the public in the Museum of the Bible in Washington DC. I also think Worthy recognized that so many elements of this series parallel my previous work; they knew I would resonate with and get excited about it.

“The major parallel emphasis will be the Jewish people as God’s chosen ones and, of course, a heavy focus on the Holy Land. But this will be a contemporary story interspersed with ancient scenes from as far back as 150 BC,” said Jenkins.

Dead Sea Rising features Nicole Berman leading an archeological dig in Jordan to search for the first concrete sign of the biblical patriarch Abraham. During the excavation, she discovers a 4,000-year-old complex that includes evidence of Abraham and his two sons, Isaac and Ishmael.

During the search a devastating cave-in nearly kills her, leaving her with haunting visions of what she may have seen. This drives her to explore other sites in the region, each revealing a new truth that could change the face of Arab-Israeli relations. Add a Palestinian with whom she falls in love -- but who secretly opposes her -- and new volunteer to her team who knows secrets about her family that could blow everything to pieces.

Jenkins has been doing much research for the new series. Although he has written numerous Bible-centered, archeology and the Dead Sea Scrolls are unexplored fields for him, he said.

Similarities exist between Left Behind series and The Dead Sea Chronicles, including biblical prophecy and spiritual warfare with Satan working through his agents against Christian believers. “The biblical prophecy pertains more to current events than future events, and is heavy on the Arab-Israeli conflict,” said Jenkins.

Worthy is already preparing for the fall launch. Social media promotions will begin with Jenkins’ core group of followers and branch out from there, according to Nicole Pavlas, director of publicity for Worthy. “We expect a robust first print run based on initial retail response," she says.