O Me of Little Faith

O Me of Little Faith

Is Judgment Day May 21?

I brought this up several months ago, but seeing how we’re almost a week away from the big supposed event it seems a good time to revisit the fact that WE’RE ALL ABOUT TO DIE.

Or be “caught up in the air,” as believers. Or be judged. Or at least be made very uncomfortable for a few months. That’s the belief of a handful of religious groups who are predicting that, on May 21 — a week from Saturday — the rapture of believers will occur, followed by no less than the destruction of the universe on October 21, 2011.


They’re led by Harold Camping, the president of Family Radio and a long-time end-of-the-world prognosticator who first predicted the rapture would occur in September of 1994 but was wrong. But this time he won’t be wrong because he has figured out the Bible, he says, and “the Bible guarantees it,” as the above billboard states.

The blog American Jesus has an interview with Gunther von Harringa, who not only has an arch-villainy name but is also the president of Bible Ministries International, a broadcasting ministry connected to Camping and Family Radio. The interview is noteworthy for the sheer confidence and certainty on display.


The interviewer asks von Harringa, “just for the sake of argument,” whether there might be a back-up date in case the rapture does not occur on May 21. (Kind of like what happened with Camping’s 1994 prediction.) Might God change his mind since someone apparently figured it out? Von Harringa replied:

God will not change His mind because He Has given us the accurate date in order for genuine believers to warn their families, friends, and the world at large, as He commands in Eze. 33:7, “So thou, O son of man, I have set thee a watchman unto the house of Israel; therefore thou shalt hear the word at my mouth, and warn them from me.” There are also no other “back-up dates” because the Bible guarantees this with many proofs and much evidence…it WILL happen, and NOTHING can prevent it.


There is no back-up date because “the Bible guarantees this.” Wow. This reminds me of another major doomsday prediction, when Edgar Whisenant predicted that the Rapture would occur sometime during September 13-15 in 1988 (his best-selling pamphlet was called 88 Reasons Why the Rapture Will Be in 1988). Whisenant did a big media tour and announced on several occasions that “only if the Bible is in error am I wrong.”

He was wrong.

Camping and his followers aren’t even willing to admit that they (or the Bible) could be wrong. There’s no back-up plan.


At American Jesus, the interviewer presses the issue, asking if von Harringa would be willing to schedule a follow-up interview for sometime after May 21, just in case. The answer was NO.

Because of the utter devastation that will engulf the entire world an interview would be virtually impossible; moreover, by God’s mercy, I don’t plan on being here.

That’s some serious confidence. And I guess we should believe him when he says there is nothing more important than getting this message out (after all, that’s why God allowed us to figure out the date, they say, thus the ubiquitous billboards and signs, and all the statements about how they need to “warn the world at large”). But the fact remains that, for decades, Harold Camping and Family Radio have been buying up commercial radio broadcasting frequencies in major markets like New York, Philadelphia, and Washington. These FCC broadcasting licenses are easily worth millions of dollars. If Camping wanted to sell them, he could. He would have buyers lined up across the country. And if he is right about the Rapture and ensuing “utter devastation” on its heels — if an online interview will be virtually impossible for von Harringa — won’t these licenses and frequencies also be useless after May 21? Won’t radio broadcasts be fairly difficult during an apocalypse?


So why is he keeping them? Wouldn’t those potential millions go a long way in spreading his doomsday message, in a last-ditch effort of billboards and bus benches and bumper stickers? Is it more important to warn the world or to retain his radio empire? Any chance he thinks he might still need those licenses on May 22?

Let me go on the record by saying: Yes. Of course, he will.

This is why: Since the time of Christ, there have been thousands and thousands of predictions of the end of the world. None of them have been correct. NONE. Zero-for-thousands is a horrible batting average, and to think YOU are the only one who’ll be correct, in all the history of mankind, is the Mt. Everest of arrogance.


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ChadJ (randomlychad)

posted May 11, 2011 at 10:00 am

I remember old Mr. Whisenant–I was less than 6 months “saved,” in September of 1988 (in fact, had just gotten baptized). Not knowing the Bible then, I wondered if he could be right, but the rapture of course didn’t happen. But the foolish things people did! Charged up their credit cards, euthanized their pets… and all because a “teqcher” set a date. What do the Scriptures say about the accountability of teachers?

Anyway, the one thing I come back is that Jesus Himself said that no man knows the day or the hour–not Edgar Whisenant, or Harold Camping. (In fact, I think it would be awesome to get Tommy Lee Jones, in character as a US Marshall, to interrogate Mr. Camping after the 21st. “Care to revise your BS statement?”).

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Grumpy Old Person

posted May 11, 2011 at 10:28 am

Um, Isn’t EVERY day “judgement” day? Or does God simply ignore all our actions until some ‘final’ day of judgement?

Doing wrong is doing wrong – always!

A friend of mine used to wear a T-shirt with the slogan, “Jesus is coming. Look busy.” I told him that it should read, “Jesus is coming – BE busy!”.

Many Christians pray and wait for Christ’s return. I believe Christ is with us already. Doesn’t Scripture tell us He will be with us “always”?

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brenten gilbert

posted May 11, 2011 at 10:28 am

Those billboards and signs really irritate me. Just one more example of embracing the hype while misrepresenting the hope. Makes sharing an authentic message a little bit more difficult.

(but just in case, i’m definitely pulling out my Pocket Guide to the Apocalypse and keeping it handy).

peace… love… bdg…

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Tim M

posted May 11, 2011 at 10:47 am

I tried to predict that Jesus was returning on October 10, 2010 because 10/10/10 in binary is 42 which, as we all know, is the answer to the question of “what is meaning of life?” Thus 42 = Jesus = 101010.

Only my computer geek friends appreciated it, though no one (appropriately) believed it.

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Charlie Chang

posted May 11, 2011 at 10:48 am

This makes me want to open up a jewelry store!

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posted May 11, 2011 at 10:53 am

Eventually – someone will be right, right?
Isn’t he using those air waves to warn more people than bus stop benches can warn? Maybe that is why they keep them and don’t sell them.

Not only do I think he is off, but I also am sure we will be here in 2013 – however, if he is right: no so bad either.

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Jason Boyett

posted May 11, 2011 at 11:10 am


I’m thinking worldwide. Are the billions of people in India and China getting the message? Wouldn’t international billboards be a more efficient approach than radio messages in the U.S.?

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posted May 11, 2011 at 11:16 am

It should be relatively simple to make sure that apocalypse never happens. All we need is time predictions for every hour in a day. If no man knows the day or hour, logically it can’t happen on any predicted time.

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posted May 11, 2011 at 12:12 pm

I wonder what Camping does with Mark 13 ( and Matthew 24 ( No one knows the hour or the day except God.

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Jason Boyett

posted May 11, 2011 at 12:19 pm


I wonder what he does with Deut. 18:20-22, which commands that a prophet be put to death if he speaks something in God’s name that God doesn’t intend him to say. According to the Law, we’ll know this is the case if his prophecy doesn’t come true. Gulp.

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Rob Rynders

posted May 11, 2011 at 12:36 pm

This is all about money. These guys are manipulating folks to make a few bucks. I’m sure the donations are rolling it at a record pace right now. Even if they are breaking even on advertising this has probably attracted a number of new followers and “true believers,” who will keep throwing money at these guys even after May 21 passes. Not to mention the day they cash in those those broadcasting licenses.

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posted May 11, 2011 at 12:39 pm

“American Jesus” is redundant.

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posted May 11, 2011 at 3:09 pm

““American Jesus” is redundant.”

That’s kind of the point.

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Jeremy Myers

posted May 11, 2011 at 7:59 pm

I’m willing to bet this guy a million dollars he is wrong.

If he is right, I’ll pay him a million dollars on May 22. If he is wrong, he pays me a million dollars.

Will he take up the challenge. Of course not. Why?

Well, because he knows he is wrong too.

I guarantee he has already got his “I guess I was wrong, but here is why I’m still a great man of God” speech all written up. And look at the media attention he is getting! It’s great for ratings.

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Cecelia Dowdy

posted May 12, 2011 at 6:20 am

THE YEAR, THE YEAR! Back in my JW (Jehovah’s Witness) days, they predicted the year for Armageddon….they were wrong. They claimed that the Bible states that nobody knows the DAY or the HOUR, but, they were covered since they were predicting the YEAR! Yes, Camping is looney, just as the JWs are…

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posted May 12, 2011 at 1:03 pm

Camping could easily sell all of his assets on the stipulation that the buyers don’t take possession until May 22. If he is really interested in warning everyone, that’s what he would be doing. I agree with you Jason. He’s wrong. And he knows it. And I like your Deuteronomy comment.

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posted May 12, 2011 at 3:02 pm

If it turns out the people who are sure they can read the Bible are wrong about this, then odds are they are wrong about a whole bunch of other things and they should get out of our lives.

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posted May 12, 2011 at 7:56 pm

I’m not bothered by his retaining the licenses so much. I do wonder if he has sold any airtime for after the 21st.

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posted May 13, 2011 at 12:01 pm

It seems that there is another group on the scene with a new perspective in disputing Camping’s prophesies. They make a compelling statement that “Jesus is here now.” Check out their billboard which I think will stir the pot a bit.

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posted May 13, 2011 at 1:36 pm

They have even put one of those billboards way up here on the east coast of Canada…

Anyway, I guess when they were studying the Bible to figure out their correct date, they missed the verse that states that no one knows the day or time – not even Jesus (as a man walking on the earth) knew. Only the Father knows.

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posted May 13, 2011 at 2:59 pm

Religion and prophecies are no doubt a multi-billion dollar business and always will be. However, this notion shouldn’t be taken so lightly as it’s happened before(The deluge). The whole planet was flooded by our so called GOD, but for what reason? But if you believe a human being(Noah) could actually build an Ark and then go and find hundreds of animals – male and female and ride out the biggest tidal wave in history, then i wouldn’t believe anything theses books(Bible, Genesis) write about!

I believe our would is heading for a BIG wake up call and it’s got nothing to do with religion, but will almost certainly through it on it’s head. Open your eyes people to what is really going on all around us and has been for thousands of years!

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posted May 14, 2011 at 7:15 pm

All you scoffers are forgetting one thing. The whole world is in a damn mess, do you really think that politicans can fix things? If you do then you are the dumb ones. This time, it looks like we need divine intervention to get us out of this mess.

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Live by heart, use your mind

posted May 15, 2011 at 7:11 am

I have to say after reading all the comments, not just from this site but from multiple blogs/discussions, I feel heavy in heart for both sides. Camping and friends, who I believe are very sincere, will wake up on the 22nd disillusioned at best, and suicidal and worst, having to face their own humanity and deception. It will simply be another opportunity for a broken violent world to turn their back on a desperately needed message. The world is waiting to see evidence of genuine changed lives, no longer interested in hearing preaching wrapped in King James verbiage warning of an angry God. I wish Camping was right. I would welcome an exit from this mess. But I choose to do my best to live a Christ motivated love and not be caught up in the anxiety of the drama. Trusting Him is the only peace I have found in the midst of world chaos. I gave up my life to follow Him. The rest is insignificant.

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David Ippolito

posted May 15, 2011 at 1:52 pm


Well, as promised I wanna share with you guys just one more thought before the end of the world and the entire Universe this Saturday. The true-believers have hit New York City this week, and their vans and posters and billboards have been all over town!

Something occurred to me the other day after listening and watching Harold Camping and his followers speak endlessly about the second coming of Jesus and all that it involves. To catch you up, in a nutshell…

On Judgment Day (Saturday, May 21) the end begins. That’s when all the “True Believers” will be caught up and will physically rise up to be with Jesus for ever in the new heaven and the new earth. People who have accepted the teachings of Mr. Camping and the literal word of the Bible are hoping to be counted among the saved. They are being told to pray that, in God’s mercy, they will be spared the “hell on earth” that is about to begin this weekend. If they are lucky enough to be “chosen” and saved, they will be witness to the havoc and gnashing of teeth from which they’ve been spared, before flying up to eternal bliss.

The rest of the “unsaved” people of the world, most of the billions of people of the world, will be left behind on an earth which will be rocked by earthquakes, untold suffering, and the dead remains of all the unsaved people who ever lives will rise up out of their graves to be shamed in the eyes of all. This kind of mayhem and tribulation will continue for 5 months until, on October 21, the entire world and Universe will shrivel to a cinder… to exist no more… and all who were left behind will have conscious existence never again.

Ball game over.

Now if you know me or my music (David Ippolito) at all you know how strongly I feel that all religion is a source of consolation, but that all belief systems of the institutionalized religions are both silly and harmful, and based and on mythology and this basic need for human beings to find some kind of consolation in the face of the unknown. (In other words, it’s all basically well-meaning crap. All ego-based… all of it.)

But it kinda got me thinking…

If I subscribed to the teachings of Mr. Camping and his brand of Christian lunacy and I was among the “saved”, do you know what I think I would be doing this week?

I would be praying with all my might to be “left behind”. (Okay, insert your own joke about the 5-month party that would follow.)

No, in all seriousness, if I called myself a Christian I would WANT TO BE LEFT BEHIND for a completely different reason.

Can you imagine the fear and the sorrow that would be worldwide if this actually occurred? Can you imagine the tears and the pain? Can you imagine the billions of frightened children who would need someone to hold them? Can you imagine the untold number of fragile, frightened people who would need someone to be their just to hold their hand… or just to wipe their tears?

Now I know that The Bible is a tapestry of poetry, mythology, crime-stories, impossibly Good morality and inconceivably bad morality. It’s a series of short stories and verse loosely strung together over the centuries to both comfort and horrify. It’s a whacky book. but I also know that the very same Jewish hippie that Harold Camping and his “true believers” are claiming to follow is supposed to have said this…

“Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.”
John 15:13 (King James Version)


Yeah, I think I would have to willingly give up my eternal life and my conscious existence in heaven to hang back, take a pass on the whole “salvation” thing… and comfort a few frightened people. I think I’d rather hang back with the unsaved and dry a few tears… than live for all eternity with the knowledge that I didn’t make that choice.

That kind of heaven… would be hell. No?

Yeah. That would suck.

Besides, I love my family and friends and I’d give up my eternal conscious existence to hang with them for another 5 months.

I can think of nothing in the world more selfish and self-serving than praying to be “caught-up”.

Peace ?

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Pamela Richards

posted May 15, 2011 at 8:18 pm

The word translated “revelation”–apocalypto–refers to the unveiling of the bride, the moment the identity of the Bride of Christ is revealed to the world.

I can’t think of anything I’d rather do than attend the Wedding Feast of the Lamb this Saturday. Thanks for the invitation, Mr. Camping!

But I guess nobody told your committee that the wedding ceremony in ancient Israel was a surprise party, a mock abduction of a willing bride who had already consented legally to the arrangement by sipping wine offered to her by the groom at her betrothal. The “thief in the night” scenario was meant to increase her anticipation and her joy, not to prevent anyone from attending. And in fact the bride was not in charge of setting the wedding date, her future father-in-law was! Which would be why “no man knows the day or the hour, except my Father in Heaven.”

But the good news is there’s still time for you to make arrangements to attend the real wedding, if you want to be there. The Spirit and the Bride say, “Come!” All who are thirsty are to drink freely from the river of the waters of life.

I know it’s hard to wait, but some people still need to get ready. We can wait for them, can’t we, while we share the invitation?

See you there!

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posted May 16, 2011 at 9:17 pm

Hello, Im new to this kinda thing, but reading all of this has given me one real question to ask, IF judgement day is the 21 then why hasn’t the pope or even cardinals say anything? Isn’t weird that the person Closest to god hasn’t say a word about this? It puzzles me that the leaders of the worlds religions are not backing anything that Cammping is proposing? To me Judgement day is one in which we all experience alone on the day that we die. Well thats my thoughts about this… see everyone on the 22nd :)

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posted May 17, 2011 at 10:43 pm

Immanentizing the Eschaton: Hail Eris!

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Alicia Lowden

posted May 18, 2011 at 7:41 pm

Well, being a Wiccan, I don’t believe most of Christianity anyways. I have nothing against it, its a beautiful faith, but I think people like Camping have gone a bit too far with their beliefs. It is one thing to believe, it is another to know. Most times, when it comes to religion, when people “know” they are right 100%, its most likely they are wrong. I will not envy them on May 22nd.

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posted May 19, 2011 at 5:35 pm

For some the 21st will be Judgement day. Because that is their day to cross over. For others I seriously doubt it. As to this person’s motivation….. I find it very suspect.

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posted May 19, 2011 at 8:44 pm

I think it’s very sad that Mr. Camping is focusing everyone’s attention on a falsehood. The Bible tells us that no man knows the hour, yet he says he does. When he is proven wrong, he will just turn more people away from Christianity, convinced that only crazy people believe in Jesus. What He needs to be doing is drawing everyone closer to Christ by telling them the TRUTH about salvation – that anyone can choose Jesus and live eternally with Him!

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posted May 19, 2011 at 8:55 pm

It’s no wonder people have a hard time with Christians with all the wacky people claiming it’s the end of the world.
“no man knows the day or the hour, except my Father in Heaven” which means no can predict when the end is coming instead of worrying when the end is coming, how about focusing on what Jesus would wants us to be doing.

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misaki angel

posted May 20, 2011 at 2:50 am

So what are we gonna do about him after this prophecy turns out to be wrong too?? this is total B.S . because he is unreasonably scaring people and detaching them away from “peace” … is that what the Bible taught this old man? To spread fear and tension and peace throughout the world??

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Connie Collins

posted May 20, 2011 at 10:41 am

I just have one thing to say or to have you give thought to. If this gentleman knows when the rapture will take place by claiming he has figured out the Bible, then why does the Bible state in Matthew 25:13, “Watch therefore, for ye know neither the day nor the hour wherein the Son of man cometh.” God’s word for thought!

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Lolita Franklin

posted May 20, 2011 at 11:00 am

Come on people Wake Up!! The Word of God is Very True to the letter! The Lord Jesus said Himself NO MAN KNOWS THE DAY OR THE HOUR IN WHICH THE SON OF GOD IS COMING! ONLY THE CREATOR. In Matthew 24 it’s speaking of the Signs of the end would be visible. Check the events around you.

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posted May 20, 2011 at 11:25 am


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Maya and Ashlyn

posted May 20, 2011 at 1:15 pm

…This is a load of crap.

I’m sure that it’s all for money. Like stated above, no one knows when the day or hour is, only the Father knows.

If this guy really thinks that he knows when the day and time of the ‘end’ will be, shouldn’t he take the time to read the bible?

Honestly, I let this scare me but now I KNOW it’s fake, sure, I’m still a bit concerned but I’m one of faith, I know he’s wrong, I read the bible.

I believe God more than that crazy old man. ._.

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M smith

posted May 20, 2011 at 2:37 pm

“Is May 21st The Finest Hour?”

[Removed by Jason]

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Jason Boyett

posted May 20, 2011 at 2:45 pm

Sorry, M Smith. This isn’t the place to advertise your film.

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posted May 20, 2011 at 4:50 pm

I agree with you GoM. I hope nobody took their pets and had them euthanized for their end time tomorrow. If I were a vet I would take any pet that they left and find them another home, stat!

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posted May 20, 2011 at 5:40 pm

does anyone remember this passage……1.2 Timothy 4:3 (Whole Chapter)
[2 Timothy 3:1 ] For the time is coming when people will not endure [ 1 Tim 1:10] sound [Or healthy] teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions,

hummm I think people. should be listening for the holy spirit when reading the bible…seems pretty clear to me ,when it says no man knowth….this loony tunes thinks hes got it down and the people that are stupid enough to listen to him are just as bad..NO ONE KNOWS…we know it will happen one day mthats all that matters…very sad to have icthing ears…God is the one you should be listening too…kudos to your articule and the line MT EVEREST OF ARROGANCE..i needed a good laugh..

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posted May 20, 2011 at 7:10 pm

This man needs a lot of prayer. He is very sick.I don’t know what Bible he is reading. No one can predict the end of time. According to his word only God knows the day or the hour. Let’s pray that God will have mercy on him and his followers.

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posted May 20, 2011 at 10:34 pm

Hello, Those of us who are rooted and are grounded in Jesus, Please pay on attention to this man. It’s really the devil at work. I believe God at His Word, as so many has voiced, no one, not even Mr. Camping, knows the time of Christ return. ONLY GOD, WHO CREATED THIS UNIVERSE, KNOWS. I ASK YOU WOULD HAVE STRONG FAITH IN GOD, PAY NO ATTENTION TO THIS PREDICTION. HE, MR CAMPING, WILL HAVE AN EXPLANATION AS TO WHY “IT” DID NOT HAPPEN. THE ENEMY HAS DONE A JOB ON MANY SO CALLED CHRISTIANS. LET’S PRAY THAT GOD WILL SAVE HIM, AND GIVE HIM UNDERSTANDING, OF HIS WORD. WE DO NEED TO PRAY FOR THIS MAN.

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posted May 21, 2011 at 2:31 am

The Bible does not teach anything about a rapture, it says plainly that flesh and blood cannot inherit the Kingdom of God.

It does predict that their will be an end to this Satanic System of things, in which all wickedness will pass away and those whom have God’s approval will remain and live forever on earth.

This is the whole reason why Jesus Christ died, that humans whom were created to live on earth forever were plunged into sin and death by the first humans Adam and Eve, and his death will release us from that sin and give us the privilege of living on earth as perfect humans again as it was intended to be.

Humans were not created to live in Heaven. God never said he will take people up to Heaven in a Rapture and destroy the Earth. The Earth is our everlasting home, it will never be destroyed.

The term “the end of the world” means the end of this sick wicked world, not the end of the earth or humanity, otherwise Jesus would not have died or told us to pray for better times when he said, to pray for God’s Kingdom: “Let your Kingdom come, so your (God’s) will will be done on Earth as it is in Heaven”.

So the end of the world means the time when humans whom survive will be living and loving and enjoying all the good things Their Creator intended them to enjoy: Good Health, Everlasting Life, healthy Food, freedom from fear and death, eternal youth, even the dead is predicted to rise and also enjoy these things. Everything that Adam and Eve sin brought on the human race will be reversed.

That is what the end of the world means, the time when God’s Kingdom will start ruling over the earth and all wicked people will be removed. Those whom God allow to survive will start on the road to the perfect restoration of the human race like it was intended to be.

But that day or hour is not revealed in the Bible, only signs Jesus said we would know how near that time is. The signs have been occurring for years, so it is near, but nobody knows the date or hour.

We should be concerned about doing the right things and loving our fellow humans so we will survive and live forever under God’s Kingdom.
That is the whole message of the Bible and why Jesus (The Messiah, The Deliverer, Prince of Peace) came to earth, who is also called the last Adam, to redeem the human race back to their original state which was perfection on a Paradise Earth.

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James K Hui

posted May 21, 2011 at 5:24 pm

Thanks God ! Most of the brother and sister remember what Jesus told at the old day .No men know when Jesus come back include Jesus himself. The only one should know is our God ,our God father in heaven .No one will know what is the plan for our God father in heaven !!
Nothing will be happen at 6:00 PM today !!

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James Hui

posted May 21, 2011 at 6:06 pm

It is 6:04 we still alive !! Thanks God.

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posted May 22, 2011 at 12:53 am

I think this is an advertising strategy, these people will invariably hook in some fools who think that even though they got the date wrong they have some inside info…blah blah,… don’t follow leaders I say..

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posted May 22, 2011 at 8:21 pm

My Pastor has said well that the reason there are so many crazy interpretations of what the Bible says is that not everybody plays by the same rules of interpretation. When you read the Bible, it’s important to remember that it’s a book written by humans in human language for other humans to read and understand. For example, God told Moses to “Write this down for future generations” and the writer of Hebrews says that the things are written down for us to learn from.

Granted, we are separated from the original transmission by geography, time, language, and culture; however, with the necessary brain-sweat to render accurate translation, interpretation should then proceed as normal…that is, as we normally interpret in day-to-day communication. Sometimes we use figures of speech; most times we say what we mean. Taking a “normal” (sometimes called “literal”) approach to understanding the Bible would go a long way in preventing much of the crazy teaching that passes for “Christian doctrine”.

I recommend a healthy skepticism toward anyone that says they’ve found “new truth” or “secret revelation” or “unlocked the code” in the Bible. I suggest reading the Bible regularly and take it at face value, in context. It’s also a good idea to read widely what other people say about what you’ve read. If you are the only one (or one of very few) who’s holds a certain interpretation of a particular passage, you may want to circle back and reconsider other possible meanings. I’m jus sayin’.

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