All warnings of the end of the world have apparently been “raptured” off the homepage of a doomsday preacher who wrongly predicted the return of Jesus over the weekend, and made a new prediction tonight that the end would now come on Oct. 21 of this year.
For many months, Oakland, Calif.-based Family Radio and its main voice Harold Camping had been thundering warnings that Judgment Day was to take place May 21, 2011, and that it would be a certainty with “no Plan B.”
The site even had a countdown on the front page of its website, listing the number of days left until the return of the living God:
Family Radio’s homepage on May 18, 2011, proclaimed three days left until return of Jesus to Earth.
Family Radio’s homepage on May 21, 2011, proclaimed zero days left until return of Jesus to Earth.
But now that the end did not arrive on Camping’s schedule, all images and text proclaiming Judgment Day have been scrubbed off the network’s homepage.
The 89-year-old gravel-voiced Camping took to the airwaves of Family Radio tonight to discuss the non-event, and said: “On May 21, this last weekend, this is where the spiritual aspect of it really comes through. God again brought judgment on the world. We didn’t see any difference but God brought Judgment Day to bear upon the whole world. The whole world is under Judgment Day and it will continue right up until Oct. 21, 2011 and by that time the whole world will be destroyed.”
“Are you ready to shoot yourself or go on a booze trip or whatever?” Camping said.
“I can tell you very candidly that when May 21 came and went, it was a very difficult time for me, a very difficult time. I was wondering, ‘What is going on?’” he said.
“The Bible is a very spiritual book. There are a lot of things that are very factual, very factual, of course, but there are a lot of things that are very spiritual. How to know whether to look at it with a spiritual understanding or a factual understanding is hard to know,” Camping said. “The fact is when we look at it more spiritually then we find that He did come.”
Camping then predicted the world would be brought to an end on Oct. 21, 2011.
On May 21, “God brought Judgment Day to the whole world. The whole world is on Judgment Day. It will continue to Oct. 21, 2011 and at that time the whole world will be destroyed.”
When pressed for an apology about being wrong on a May 21 Rapture, Camping responded: “If people want me to apologize then I can apologize, yes. I did not have all of that worked out as I wished I had it. But it doesn’t bother me at all because I’m not a genius. When I make an error, I say, ‘Yes, I was wrong.’”
He also said Family Radio has no intention of returning any money donated by people in recent months.
“No, that money is still going out. We’re still in business. We still have another five months,” he said.
“Why would we return it? It’s been given to get the Gospel out. We’re spending it as wisely as possible.”
This is the second time Camping has been wrong about the return of Jesus, as he had previously prognosticated 1994 as the key date.
A vehicle proclaiming Judgment Day to be May 21, 2011, seen driving through New Orleans, La., earlier this year.
The Huffington Post is now mocking Camping and his followers, posting a short satire of a news report suggesting Camping was the only one whisked away by God.
“Yeah, I mean I haven’t seen him since Saturday around six, so I’m just assuming he got raptured,” said David Howard, one of Mr. Camping’s most trusted followers, according to the parody. “I think it’s pretty lame I wasn’t raptured, though. I gave Mr. Camping pretty much all the money I had.”
As WND reported last week, there were many Christians who had serious doubts about the May 21
prediction, and some offered to purchase all of Camping’s
A letter to Camping from Sol David Cuddeback of Eugene, Ore.,
offered to take possession of everything Camping owns for a total of $1
on May 22:
Sol David Cuddeback
“According to your ‘prophecy,’ you and all the other believers
will have departed the Earth the day before, so you will have no need
for your possessions any longer,” Cuddeback wrote.
“I am dead serious. I want your home(s), car(s), cash,
investments, other real estate, contracts, accounts payable,
securities, any position of leadership that you occupy, and any
interest in any form of business (sole proprietor, non-profit,
corporation). If you refuse, then I must take that to mean that you
don’t really believe your own words to be true, which would make you a
Cuddeback did not hear any reply back from Camping.
I am intensely angry with him because his stupid, self-serving heresy
may cause some who are weak or new in the faith to become disillusioned
and fall away, after his ‘prophecy’ fails to come to pass,” he told
WND. “It is written that Jesus, when speaking of ‘religious teachers,’
said that it would be better if that teacher had a millstone tied
around his neck and tossed into the sea if the teacher caused a ‘little
one’ in the faith to stumble because of false teaching. Serious
business, taking the position of ‘speaking for God.’”
A more substantive offer of $1 million for Camping’s network of dozens of radio stations was made by Christians who run abibleanswer.org.
made the offer in hopes of turning some from mortgaging their houses
and quitting their jobs,” spokesman Richard Myers told WND. “Many have
supported this man and his false prophecies at great expense. No doubt
some will kill themselves when Jesus does not rapture them on May 21.”
is coming soon, but He is not coming on May 21. There are prophecies
that have not been fulfilled. They are in the process of fulfillment,
but will not be done by May 21. And, no man knoweth the day nor the
hour when Jesus will return. The Bible is very clear in this matter and
Harold Camping is acting contrary to Bible truth. This is not the first
time he has made a false prophecy concerning the time of Jesus’ return.
In 1994 he did the same and was proved to be a false prophet. … If
Harold Camping does not sell Family Radio, why should you sell your
home? If Harold Camping wants to retain his possessions, then you ought
to do the same.”
Camping has not responded to WND’s requests for comment.
Just one of many false alarms was in 1988, when the book, “88 Reasons Why the Rapture is in 1988,” came out.
the time the predicted dates, September 11-13, rolled around, whole
churches were caught up in the excitement the book generated,”
Strandberg writes. “I personally had friends who were measuring
themselves for wings. In the dorm where we lived, my friends were also
openly confronting all of the unsaved. It became my job to defuse
situations. … Finally, the days of destiny dawned and then set. No
For those curious as to how Camping arrived at May, 21, 2011, as the final day, he summarized it online, alleging the flood of Noah took place in the year 4990 B.C., and 2011 is precisely 7,000 years after that:
In 2 Peter 3:8
… Holy God reminds us that one day is as 1,000 years. Therefore, with
the correct understanding that the seven days referred to in Genesis
7:4 can be understood as 7,000 years, we learn that when God told Noah
there were seven days to escape worldwide destruction, He was also
telling the world there would be exactly 7,000 years (one day is as
1,000 years) to escape the wrath of God that would come when He
destroys the world on Judgment Day. Because Holy Infinite God is
all-knowing, He knows the end from the beginning. He knew how sinful
the world would become.
Seven thousand years after 4990 B.C. (the year of the Flood) is the year 2011 A.D. (our calendar).
4990 + 2011 – 1 = 7,000
[One year must be subtracted in going from an Old Testament B.C.
calendar date to a New Testament A.D. calendar date because the
calendar does not have a year zero.]
Thus Holy God is showing us by the words of 2 Peter 3:8 that
He wants us to know that exactly 7,000 years after He destroyed the
world with water in Noah’s day, He plans to destroy the entire world
forever. Because the year 2011 A.D. is exactly 7,000 years after 4990
B.C. when the flood began, the Bible has given us absolute proof that
the year 2011 is the end of the world during the Day of Judgment, which
will come on the last day of the Day of Judgment.
Amazingly, May 21, 2011, is the 17th day of the 2nd month of
the biblical calendar of our day. Remember, the flood waters also began
on the 17th day of the 2nd month, in the year 4990 B.C.
Camping’s date of 4990 B.C. for the flood of Noah is not a time with
which others have agreed. In the 17th century, theologian James Ussher
who wrote “Annals of the World”
placed the flood date at 2349 B.C. – that is, 2,641 years later than
Camping. Ussher also believed the flood occurred in the autumn, instead
of the spring as Camping has it.
New York Magazine inquired if it
could speak with Camping on May 22 just in case Jesus did not return
May 21, but Camping said, “I can’t even think about that question
because you’re thinking that maybe, maybe Judgment Day will not happen.
But it will happen, and I believe the Bible implicitly.”