I recall growing up in Charlotte hearing preachers on TV and the radio talk about the rapture of the church occurring soon. Jehovah’s Witnesses came to our house many times talking about the soon to come kingdom of God. I remember hearing about the True Light Church of Christ in Charlotte predicting the end of the world in 1970. Some members of this church quit their jobs in anticipation of the event. When the end failed to happen, one church member even committed suicide.
I also remember the famous booklet, “88 Reasons Why the Rapture is in 1988.“ A few Charlotte radio preachers capitalized upon the popularity of the book but would hedge their bets on the accuracy of the prediction. "He may not come in 1988, but the signs of his coming soon are clear”
False prophet Harold Camping has declared that May 21, 2011 is the beginning of the pouring out of the wrath of God in judgement of the earth. First off, why would I risk the wrath of God myself by declaring Harold Camping a false prophet?
If what a prophet proclaims in the name of the LORD does not take place or come true, that is a message the LORD has not spoken. That prophet has spoken presumptuously. Do not be afraid of him. Deuteronomy 18:22 (New International Version)
Camping was made prophecies which did not come true. Yes, we have been down this road with him before. He declared September. 6, 1994 to be the end of days. His people gathered together looking up into the clouds for the first peek of Jesus coming on the clouds -- but it never he never came. The day of sorrows and woe never happened. Why? Camping said he made an error in calculations. This from a man who was trained as a civil engineer at the University of California, Berkeley.
But the resourceful engineer has put a spin on the missed prophecy. Here is what he said really happened in September, 1994: www.familyradio.com/graphical/literature/waat/almost_ch03.html
7. But then, as we shall discover in this study, 2,300 days after the beginning of the great tribulation, God’s final great salvation program began. That day of history was September 7, 1994 (A.D.). It was on that date that God again poured out His Holy Spirit, so that for the next 17 years, all over the world, a great multitude of people would become saved.* Indeed, no one was aware of this awesome action of God at the time it occurred. But the Bible assures us that it did occur. That September 7, according to the Biblical calendar, was the first day
Excellent! But we have seen this kind of spin before. William Miller and his followers expected Jesus to return in 1844. Jesus did not show, of course. This day was called by some the “Great Disappointment". But the faithful had and explanation. Seventh Day Adventists teach that Miller’s calculations were correct, but the interpretation was wrong. Jesus did not come to earth, He entered the Holy of Holies in heavenly temple.
Jehovah’s Witnesses taught that the world would end in October 1914 and that 1918 would mark end of Armageddon. Clearly the world system did not end in 1914. What happened to the prediction? Here is one spin.
Just as Jesus predicted, his “presence” as heavenly King has been marked by dramatic world developments—war, famine, earthquakes, pestilences. (Matthew 24:3-8; Luke 21:11) Such developments bear powerful testimony to the fact that 1914 indeed marked the birth of God’s heavenly Kingdom and the beginning of “the last days” of this present wicked system of things.—2 Timothy 3:1-5.
Camping also teaches that the church age ended in May 21, 1988 and that very few will be saved from now until the end of days. Here is the quote from the website linked above:
6. As we continue in this study, we will learn that the church age ended on May 21, 1988 (A.D.). This date coincided with the beginning of the time when God began to prepare the churches and the world for what the Bible calls the “great tribulation.” We shall also learn that during the first 2,300 days of this 8,400-day tribulation, virtually no one could become saved.
As an engineer by training, Camping is good at math. Well so am I. I can prove mathematically that Michael Jordan is the antichrist.
Michael’s number throughout most of his career was 23.
23 x 32 = 736
The Jews returned to the promised land after 70 years of captivity.
732 - 70 = 666
Solid proof right?
So the point of it all is this. Jesus said no man would know the day ror the hour, but everyone should live as if it would happen at any moment. Not by going off to a mountain top. Not by raining down curses and condemnation at the unsaved. Not by thinly veiled schadenfreude at the miscues of President Obama or disasters happened across the world.
No let’s prepare for the end by doing the will of God. Heal wounds. House the homeless. Encourage the hopeless. Comfort the hurting. Feed the hungry. Preach the Good News. Love.
Jesus went through all the towns and villages, teaching in their synagogues, preaching the good news of the kingdom and healing every disease and sickness.
Each of us has something we can do to manifest the love of God on this earth. My thing may be different from yours but my motive should be the same. So in the days leading up to May 21, 2011 and the days beyond ...
Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.