As you've probably already guessed, Runaway Daniel Bernhardt didn't just look like the missing Pastor Daniel Bernhardt, he was the man himself, escaped from the future to throw a huge monkey wrench into the plans of his eternal foe, Robert Z'Dar. Abducted into the future by the gigantically genial Z'Dar, Pastor Daniel simply stole the secret of time travel from his overlords and masters, Cyberdyne, and traveled back to a time before his abduction, when he could still possibly foil Z'Dar's felonous figuring by heading it off before it came to pass. If he could successfully humiliate an unenhanced Z'Dar, proving to the other scientists that their emperor had no clothes, they would never create Cyberdyne, Z'Dar would never be reanimated, and no one would be abducted into the future at all. Pastor Daniel chanced his encounter with the cyborg-and-dinosaur, and sent himself back to Venice Beach to set up a secret ministry in concert with Sister Aimee.
Bernhardt and his Creation Science Research Station brethren had only began testing their plan of forcing animals up through the tar, when, during one of the test runs of their plan, an unfortunate but somehow auspicious accident befell Pastor Daniel and he fell into the tar, counting himself lucky that the stratum they had been aiming at was so near the top that he could be quickly rescued by the scientists above. He counted himself doubly lucky when he heard the scientists' incredible theories about his appearance in the tar pits. He now had indisputable, first-hand proof that they had just been guessing! But unfortunately, his rescue also led to his abduction by the cyborg Z'Dar.