Harold Camping False Prophet: What Now?
Well for one, his ministry is probably doomed:
Harold Camping is a false prophet. Six p.m. local time on May 21st 2011 already passed in New Zealand without incident, the first place the apocalyptical earthquakes are supposed to have occurred. Six p.m. also peacefully passed in Sydney, Tokyo, and Beijing.
Then there is the rapture prediction. Camping said about 200 million of God’s believers will be raptured into the sky. So far, there have been no reports of such incidents.
So what now for Harold Camping? In all likelihood, his ministry will be destroyed.
Since the beginning of Christianity, there were always false prophets who made failed ‘Doomsday’ predictions. The survival of the sect or ministry of the false prophets depended on the weight they put on their ‘Doomsday’ predictions.
The Jehovah’s Witnesses, for example, predicted ‘Doomsday’ at least three times. However, ‘Doomsday’ is hardly the core activity of their organization. When their predictions failed, they simply admitted their errors and moved on.
Similarly, Pat Robertson, a powerful figure among American evangelicals and a power broker in the Republican Party, made a failed prediction in 1982. However, his ministry and influence survived because he’s more known for his popular faith and family message.
In 1994, Harold Camping made a failed ‘Doomsday’ prediction. His ministry, however, survived for two reasons. One, his prediction wasn’t emphatic. He said there was a strong possibility of ‘Doomsday’ happening, but that language left room for error. Two, Camping’s ministry wasn’t just about Doomsday – his Family Radio broadcasted hymns and often touched on mainstream Christian issues.
However, there is no escaping his failed 2011 ‘Doomsday’ prediction. He painted himself into a corner by using words like “guaranteed” and “without any shadow of doubt.” His massive publicity campaign just made it worse…
… the days of his ministry raking in $122 million a year are probably gone forever.
Read the piece in full here.
And as to what Harold Camping is up to right now: Broadcaster silent as “Judgment Day” hours tick by…
With no sign of Judgment Day arriving as he had forecast, the 89-year-old California evangelical broadcaster and former civil engineer behind the pronouncement seemed to have gone silent on Saturday.
Family Radio, the Christian stations network headed by Harold Camping which had spread his message of an approaching doomsday, was playing recorded church music, devotionals and life advice unrelated to the apocalypse.
Camping previously made a failed prediction Jesus Christ would return to Earth in 1994.
In his latest pronouncement, he had said doomsday would begin in Asia, but with midnight local time come and gone in Tokyo and Beijing and those cities already in the early hours of May 22, there was no indication of an apocalypse.
The Oakland, California, headquarters of the network of 66 U.S. stations was shuttered with a sign in the door that read “This Office is Closed. Sorry we missed you!”
Family Radio officials, with the help of supporters, had posted over 2,000 billboards around the country warning of a May 21 Judgment Day.
The headquarters, which appears to be normally closed on Saturday, was also shuttered on Friday.
Camping, whose deep sonorous voice is frequently heard on his radio network expounding the Bible, could not be reached for comment on Saturday.
The shades were drawn and no one answered the door at his house in Alameda, California…
Reuters has the above, more and the latest here.
UPDATE I: Doomsday prophet goes into hiding:
Doomsday prophet Harold Camping, who predicted that the End of the World would come on May 21, 2011, has gone missing ever since it became increasingly clear that his prediction is going to fail, even as local churches willingly stepped in to provide counseling and help to Camping’s devastated followers.
Camping, the head of the Family Radio, had predicted that the selected number of people on earth, approximately 200 million, would Rapture to heaven on May 21, 2011 while those left behind would witness the destruction of the earth which would come about on October 21, 2011.
He has based his predictions on Bible verses, namely Genesis 7:4 (“Seven days from now I will send rain on the earth”) and 2 Peter 3:8 (“With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day”), and concluded that May 21, 2011 is 7000 years after the Great Flood (4990 B.C.), concluding that it indeed is the Doomsday.
4990 + 2011 – 1 = 7000 (the subtraction of “1″ is necessary because year 1 B.C. is followed by 1 A.D., skipping year 0).
Because Camping was certain “without any shadow of a doubt it (Doomsday) is going to happen,” many of his followers sold their possessions and quit their jobs.
Adrienne Martinez, a follower of Camping, and her husband have reportedly quit their jobs and spent the last penny in their bank account towards a rented house in Orlando. “We budgeted everything so that, on May 21, we won’t have anything left,” said Adrienne.
Now that Camping’s prediction is proven to be a complete failure, attention has been shifted to his devastated followers. Previously when Doomsday prophecies have failed, some misled followers have turned violent, even leading up to murders and committing suicides.
In order to prevent this, church groups are actively providing counseling and advice for the damaged souls…
UPDATE II: Protesters mock ‘end of world’ church…
Sceptics gather outside Harold Camping’s Family Radio Network headquarters in Oakland, California to poke fun at the evangelical broadcaster’s claim that the world would come to an end on May 21st, 2011...
The video of the above protest is in the Telegraph and can be viewed here.
UPDATE III: Harold Camping speaks here.