May 21: The End of the World?

According to one religious group, our world is going to experience a massive earthquake on May 21st, 2011 and those who have trusted in Christ will be taken from the Earth (the Rapture) – ushering in our planet’s total destruction a few months after that.   This religious group’s leader, Harold Camping, says this will happen because the bible is always absolutely true.

However, if the Bible is absolutely true (and I do believe it is), how can Harry make his prediction?  The Bible itself says “No one knows about that day or hour, not even the angels in Heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father.” (Matthew 24:36) So if not even Jesus Christ himself knows when the end of the world will come, how can some mere mortal on Earth know the intimate details?

Oh sure, he could make a guess at it.  In fact, he HAS…  TWICE now.  Not only is Harold Camping predicting the rapture will take place on May 21st of this year – he also predicted it would take place on September 4th, 1994.

Waaaait a minute.  Does that mean that he was (gasp) incorrect in his prophetic teaching of when the world would come to an end back in 1994?!?!  Gee, let me think… millions of people did NOT suddenly disappear in 1994; the world still DOES exist… so yes, it DOES mean he was incorrect.  So he falsely predicted this once before!

And if the bible is absolutely true, how does Harold reconcile his error with the Bible, that states that even one false prediction makes you a FALSE PROPHET? (And in Bible times, that means being stoned to death!)

Now he says that the 1994 prediction was an error – a “misreading of biblical codes”.  I won’t get started on the biblical code idea except to say I don’t believe in the mysterious “bible code” that’s become popular over the past few years.  It makes for entertaining reading and movies, but God never hides his message to us.  He shows His love for us and His will for our lives plain-as-day in the words of the Bible.  Everything we need to know is already well-laid-out for us.

What concerns me most about Harold Camping and May 21st is the number of people who are being sucked in to this guy’s prediction.  Imagine selling everything, walking away from all you have, thinking the end of the world is coming – and then waking up on Sunday morning, May 22, to find out you’re perfectly fine, still living on Earth, and now have absolutely no possessions, no income stream, etc.  I wonder if Harold will hold Sunday services that day, and if so, what will he say (again) to his followers?  Maybe he kept his sermon from 1994 so he can use it again this May?

Will Harold Camping and his “ministry” come to the aid of these poor souls to help them financially and to rebuild their lives?  Oh, wait, he couldn’t, because if he truly believes this then he wouldn’t have any resources left, correct?  And if he DOES have resources to continue his ministry after May 21st, then doesn’t that just prove that he never really bought into it 100% to begin with?  (Which also makes you wonder how he still had resources to rebuild after the 1994 debacle.)

This is just sad, sad, sad.  I’ve always believed it’s best to live each and every day morally and spiritually as if Jesus could call you up at any moment… but live practically as if you’ll live a very long life on this planet.

If the world ends on May 21st, I’m ready to go.  If it ends on December 21, 2012 (I’m talking to you, Mayan calendar folks), I’m ready to go.  If it ends tomorrow, I’m ready to go.  I have my life straight with Jesus.  But I’m going to live each day as if God has more work for me to do – and if He wants me to work until I’m 110 years old, I need to be prepared for it, no matter what some mere mortal “predicts”.

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