This billboard took the words right out of my mouth. Seriously. Don’t Christians read their Bible? Apparently not all. Because many deceived Christians believed Harold Campings, a California pastor who predicted doomsday to be this past Saturday at 6pm. Many of his “followers” left their jobs and families. Some sold all of their possessions. Many also traveled the world evangelizing the world’s end date.
What complexes me about this is a few things. First, most Christians who regularly read the Bible, no matter what translation, ought to be with familiar with the following passages:
- I Thessalonians 5:2: “For you know very well that the day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night.”
- 2 Peter 3:10: “But the day of the Lord will come like a thief. The heavens will disappear with a roar; the elements will be destroyed by fire, and the earth and everything done in it will be laid bare.”
- Matthew 24:36; Mark 13:32: “But about that day or hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father.”
Pretty clear, right? So why isn’t this clear to Harold Campings, a pastor? And why is he even attempting to pinpoint the day and hour? This is not the first time for him. He predicted a “doomsday date” back in 2004, false prophesy. As Min. Robert Jeffress said during a CNN interview…
If God is not going to tell his very own Son when the Day is, why would God tell Harold Campings, or why would God let him “figure it out” with some mathematical formula?
The Media (Way Too) Often Lumps Christians Together
Second, and a huge pet peeve of mine, is when the press and media highlight one Christian and report the situation as though that one person is representing all Christians or the Christian faith. In fact, I came across a YouTube video with this title: “Christians Get Duped By One of Their Own.”
Harold Campings didn’t dupe me or anyone I know who is a Christian, and he definitely doesn’t represent my belief system nor the beliefs of the Christian friends and people I know, but unfortunately the media will lump me and him together under the category or label “Christian” just because I call myself a Christian too. Makes me want to label myself something else! The very reason I don’t subscribe to denominational labels. (e.g., What “religion” are you?) Shoot, Jim Jones professed to be a Christian and had people drinking Kool-Aid. And most people, Christians and non-Christians alike, understood Jim Jones to be a cult leader.
Christians Who Gave Away All Their Possessions
I was surprised but also very saddened to hear about so many deceived Christians who sold all of their possessions as a result of this false prophesy.
In fact, many of them left their jobs, the families, and gave away all of their posessions because they fully believed they would be raptured. They really entrusted this man’s prophesy. But the pastor who gave the false prediction did not appear saddened. He simply told them that he is not equip to give “financial advice,” that he did not tell anyone to give away all of their belongings. Wow. Really? No “sorry”? And why didn’t he tell people not to give stuff away? Surely he had to know that some people were doing that. That’s not Christianity, ya’ll. That’s a cult. One man who cares only about his self, and he gives out information that is in direct contradiction to the Word of God.
But like I told one coworker who asked me if this is real or fake, I told him, “Make sure your heart is right anyway!” Because we don’t know when the day or hour Christ will return. It might even be today. And you won’t have time to “prepare” by giving away everything you own.
UPDATE: When the predicted doomsday didn’t happen this past Saturday, the pastor who was “wrong” simply states that he is not a “genius” and his mathematical calculations were off by 5-months and the “real” rapture will take place on October 21st. Keep in mind this same pastor predicted the world will end back in 2004. So he already has two strikes against him. Three strikes and you’re out, buddy. Meanwhile, he can ride that media bus for another six months at the least, although it’s probably gonna be a very bumpy ride this time around.