Cross posted at the Atheist Oasis
It's the end of the world as we know it.
It's the end of the world as we know it.
It's the end of the world as we know it and I feel fine. – It's The End Of The World As We Know It (And I Feel Fine) - R.E.M
The more fantastic an ideology or theology, the more fanatic its adherents - Edward Abbey
This was bit of an animated discussion today, in my apartment complex. My buddy’s girlfriend Linda and the older lady Arliss upstairs were chatting with me, when this friendly young man in a Carolina blue dress shirt and yellow tie came down and started joining the conversation. We’re a friendly crowd here. But he started talking about studying ‘pastoral theology’ at which point I went to check the mail, and when I returned, he was blathering on about ‘god this god that’. Upon which I pointed a finger at him and announced that ‘God doesn’t exist, and there’s nobody up there.’ He was taken a little aback at that. Then Linda mentioned the tsunami in Japan, and how it made her nervous, and Arliss chimed in that the End Of The World was going to occur on May 12th, 2011.
I immediately mocked the idea. Pantomiming a ‘believer’, I stated, “Oh, here it comes, the END! OF! THE! WORLD! Any second now…damn. Didn’t happened. AGAIN.” I looked at the young man. “Guess we’ll have to re-work those numbers.” He seemed actually amused. I then proceeded to explain to these folks, that
A. We’ve always had natural catastrophes throughout the centuries, we just find out about them quicker due to media saturation. Everyone knew about Krakatoa, but in that case, there was little choice,
B. The END! OF! THE! WORLD! has been predicted (unsuccessfully) so many times, it’s lost all meaning, and
C. Human beings seem to think there’s an end to everything, and to some degree there is. In the world’s case, it’ll be the Y5B problem, and we’ll all likely die in our sleep (if we’re lucky), long before that.
I also took the liberty of announcing that all religion is superstitious crap. The young fellow seemed in a permanent state of startled, and the two ladies told him that I was the resident cynic. As he left, he stated that he was to be married in the summer, and he hoped the Apocalypse would wait until afterwards. I assured him nothing was going to happen, all would be well.
People get the strangest damndest ideas sometimes, don’t they?
As to this “May 12th” nonsense, where did this compost arise?
One Harold Camping, to be precise.
Here’s his website. It’s a hoot, to be sure:
We are living at a time when mankind seems to sense that the end of all things is very near. Just about everyone has a theory as to how the world is threatened and when that end might come. The media and the Internet are full of doomsday speculations concerning the New Age "Mayan Calendar" and the year 2012. Some scientists predict that Global Warming could wipe out life on Planet Earth within a certain number of years. At the same time, politicians work to halt the proliferation of life-destroying nuclear weapons before it is "too late." High profile news reports of economic downturns, crime, wars, tsunamis, earthquakes, and disease outbreaks cause people to question whether God is bringing judgment on the world.
As opposed to what say, a thousand years ago? When everyone thought the world would end at the year 1000? Or the latest hullabaloo of 2000? The media and Internet reflect how the majority of people are, and what most of them are is addled.
These ideas cause people to fear greatly. Some realize that God knows how and when the end of the world will come, so they wonder if He tells us. Rather than turning to the Bible as the source of all truth for these answers, they turn to the churches and religious leaders. They may be told that the end will not come until Antichrist rises as a political leader who will make them take the "mark of the beast." Many are told that God will rapture His people before a 7 year Great Tribulation after which Christ will set up a 1000 year reign from an earthly throne in Jerusalem. Others are told that Christ will come to rapture believers the same day he destroys the world. While just about every church has a different idea as to what the Bible teaches concerning the end, they all seem to agree on one thing; no man can know the day or the hour of Christ's return because the scriptures say that He is coming as a thief in the night. But are they correct? Can We Know?
No we can’t. Not according to the patchwork hodgepodge twaddle you call the bible. The bloody thing was (and is) so wrong on so many topics and on so many historical events, and the contradictions? Don’t even get me started. And the whole “he’s gonna sneak up on your asses!” thing is just so…I dunno, I’m split between sociopathic and infantile.
This web site serves as an introduction and portal to four faithful ministries which are teaching that WE CAN KNOW from the Bible alone that the date of the rapture of believers will take place on May 21, 2011 and that God will destroy this world on October 21, 2011. Please take your time and browse through the teachings of Harold Camping, President of Family Radio. Visit EBible Fellowship, Bible Ministries International, and The-Latter-Rain to read and listen to many faithful teachers give scriptural insight on the doctrines that God is teaching His people. Learn about the Biblical Timeline of History, the correct method of Bible interpretation, the End of the Church Age and God's command to believers that they must depart out of the churches. Study the proofs that God has so graciously given in His Word showing us that these dates are 100% accurate and beyond dispute. Above all, please READ THE BIBLE and prayerfully ask God to open your spiritual eyes to these truths. May it please Him to have mercy on each of our souls.
Presuppositionalists are perhaps the most difficult people to dispel of these notions. Further entrenchment occurs when there’s a vested interest (say, a career or a revenue stream) involved. Declare yourself a born-again author (or any other profession), and boom! Instant customer base. I’m willing to wager, however, that when these mission-critical dates come and go, and no fanfare is blared from on high, and the heavens don’t split and spill brightness upon us all, and there is not one person plucked from streets, this particular doomsayer will be reduced to either a mumbling lost ‘soul’, or he will ‘run the numbers’ again, and start all over.
When a false prophet makes a profit, who gets a refund?
Till the next post then.