Mr. Camping's "Rapture"
Katherine Albrecht, Ed. D.
By: Katherine Albrecht
Fort Fairfield Journal, June 1, 2011
I'm glad to still be here. I don't know about you guys but if you were expecting the rapture to happen on May 21, I think that was kind of a big dud.
Of course, Harold Camping is the radio announcer who was predicting Saturday, May 21 as the "rapture" [ed.: the word 'rapture' does not appear anywhere in the Holy Bible] - the time that the Lord would come and take everybody away and begin the countdown to the destruction of the Heavens and the Earth. They had billboards and signs up on the subways in New York City. The signs read, "Judgment day is coming May 21. Are you ready?" I'm looking at this and wondering is this like a conference on May 21? What exactly is it they're advertising? Of course, I was a little bit out of the loop here since it looks like everybody else was already prepared; for Harold Camping knew he was counting down the days to judgment day. Of course, it didn't happen.
I have a couple of comments on this I just want to bring to your attention. How many times have we gone down this road? How many times has someone said the world is going to end on _______. How many times are people going to buy into this notion some totally fallible human being knows the end of the world when even Jesus Christ himself said no man knows the day or the hour, not even the son of man. Jesus said, and Iíll paraphrase here, "even I don't know when it's going to be happening, that's information even I don't have." So how is it this guy, Harold Camping on his radio program that plays on sixty six stations around the country, knows the answer? How is it that people are going to believe this guy and not their Bibles?
This is what I don't get and I keep coming back to this. If the Bible tells you something and somebody out there is telling you something that is opposed to that, but using a Biblical justification, then obviously the answer, as far as I'm concerned, is about as plain as it could possibly be. Harold Camping coming out and saying he's read the Bible and it tells him the rapture will occur on May 21 is nonsense, it's utterly nonsense and inconsistent, it doesn't make any sense. But, let me tell you where I think he's brilliant. If I were a charlatan trying to fool people, and if I had been wrong once before (he predicted this was going to happen previously in 1994), I would have built in a loophole. He did. It was an amazingly brilliant, diabolical loophole. His loophole was to say if all of my tens of thousands of radio listeners get down on their knees, pray and repent, then maybe God will change his mind. So, now when it fails to materialize, instead of people saying he was wrong again, they can instead pat themselves on the back and say look at the confirmation, we must truly be God's chosen people if our prayers and repentance saved the world.
Now, Camping has changed his story. He's now telling us that the world is going to be obliterated on October 21. He was off by just five months. He had predicted that 200 million Christians were going to be raptured on May 21. Now he's saying it actually did happen but it was kind of like an 'invisible judgment' where God made a decision over the weekend which of the Christians on this Earth would be saved when He actually does destroy the Earth in five months. So the big question here is, when is this guy going to give up?
People like Mr. Camping will never quit. They'll always be back, proclaiming the end of the world yet again. But this is the thing that really upsets me about guys like Harold Camping, there's an important aspect of this that affects people in a direct way in their relationship with God. That is, this guy is saying he was doing what he was instructed to do by the Bible but when it doesn't happen as he said, it really upsets people. When Harold Camping and all of the other charlatans throughout the centuries who make these wild proclamations and turn out to be wrong, their followers don't say, "Oh, I got sucked in by a charlatan because I didn't read my Bible closely enough." No, these people aren't kicking themselves because they didn't read their Bibles; they're kicking themselves because they believe in their own hearts they were doing what the Bible said and the Bible has failed them - not their inaccurate leadership.
Camping said since the judgment has already occurred, there's no point in getting your act together, getting on your knees and asking for forgiveness if you haven't already done so because it's already been decided. That is a disturbing concept. Of course, it is extremely unbiblical.
Take it from me, it's nonsense. It's never too late to get on your knees and get your life straightened around.
This editorial was transcribed and adapted for print from a recent Katherine Albrecht radio program, by David Deschesne, with her permission. Dr. Katherine Albrecht, Ed. D. is a syndicated radio talk show host on the Genesis Communication Network. Listen to her program live daily, or download her podcast for listening at any time at www.gcnlive.com Katherineís website is: www.katherinealbrecht.com