Posts Tagged ‘Harold Camping’
Harold Camping, who predicted Oct. 21 to be the day Christians would be caught up to heaven and that God would judge the world, said on Oct. 16 that he is no longer able to lead Family Radio Stations, Inc. or his ministry, and his wife has confirmed that the 90-year-old radio evangelist has retired, a documentarian close to Camping told The Christian Post in an exclusive interview.
Camping also said in a private conversation that day that nobody could know exactly when the time of the apocalypse would come, according to his interlocutor. That statement constitutes a radical change in his teachings…
Remember earlier this year when the world didn’t end?
Like every other doomsday prophecy throughout history, the May 21st rapture promised by Oakland-based Family Radio network owner Harold Camping never materialized. The 90-year-old, self-styled prophet now claims the world will end by this Friday and not with a bang, as previously predicted, but rather with a whimper.
“The end is going to come very, very quietly probably within the next month…by October 21st,” said Camping in a radio address delivered earlier this month. “Probably there will be no pain suffered by anyone because of their rebellion against God…We can become more and more sure that they’ll quietly die and that will be the end of their story.”
You’ll note the word “probably.” Catherine Wessinger did. She’s an expert on doomsday groups at Loyola University in New Orleans and editor of The Oxford Handbook of Millennialism. She says she’s seen this before.
When prophecy fails, she says, “the person making the prediction can give themselves a way out, sort of a backdoor way of getting out of the prediction. Or on the other hand, when nothing happens, the event can be spiritualized.”
After the fact, Camping’s retroactively revised his prediction such that May’s apocalypse was scaled back to an “invisible judgement day.”
While Camping said he was “flabbergasted” when May 22nd rolled around and everything remained essentially unchanged, a post on Family Radio’s website explains why the previous prediction only seemed like a bust:
What really happened this past May 21st ? What really happened is that God accomplished exactly what He wanted to happen. That was to warn the whole world that on May 21 God’s salvation program would be finished on that day. For the next five months, except for the elect (the true believers), the whole world is under God’s final judgment. To accomplish this goal God withheld from the true believers the way in which two phrases were to be understood. Had He not done so, the world would never have been shaken in fear as it was.
Camping suffered a stroke only weeks after his May prediction yielded worldwide backlash and subsequently halted his daily radio sermons. Even though he has not returned to full-time broadcasting, he has occasionally released pre-taped segments broadcast on the network…
The rest here (if you could be bothered).
Was he smoted?
Harold Camping, president of Family Radio, a Christian radio ministry, suffered a severe stroke on Thursday night and had to be hospitalized, triggering concerns as to whether his followers will ever be able to hear his enigmatic voice broadcast over 66 stations anymore.
The 89-year-old radio evangelist was rushed to hospital from his Alameda, California home and although he is out of danger now, his friends and family fear that the stroke, which was on Camping’s right side, may affect his ability to speak.
Camping’s neighbor has told the Oakland Tribune that Camping is fine but the stroke has left his speech slurred.
Charles Menut, the regional manager for Family Stations Inc., the parent company of Family Radio, has requested everyone, including the media, not to contact him or his family members but pray for them and his quick recovery.
Menut said Family Radio will “publicly update everyone on Monday” about Camping’s health…
So the question all are asking is, is it punishment or just old age?
His wife says he is doing well:
Doomsday preacher Harold Camping is “doing very well” days after he was admitted to a hospital for a stroke, his wife said Sunday evening.
When The Christian Post visited Camping’s home in Alameda Sunday, a woman claiming to be Camping’s wife, Shirley, answered the door but never revealed her face.
Asked about Camping’s condition, the presumed Mrs. Camping reported to CP, “He is doing very well – not a serious stroke at all!”
Mrs. Camping didn’t reveal which hospital her husband was admitted to. But asked if he was still in the hospital, she responded, “The hospital doesn’t allow people in. So, I can’t tell you. Alright?”
She also said she has “no idea” when Camping would be released from the hospital, commenting “that’s too soon.”
The 89-year-old Camping was admitted to a hospital Thursday night after he suffered a stroke, the Oakland Tribune reported…
Apparently, he might not be able to host his radio show anymore. This may be a good thing considering all the false prophecy he has been spewing!
Do not think the rapture is a harmless prank, or merely the domain of fools. It has real world and serious consequences…
Sadly, all cults and sects do.
Writes Richard Bartholomew:
Stern words from Tim LaHaye:
The Rev. Tim LaHaye, co-author of the “Left Behind” series of Christian prophecy novels, said [Harold] Camping “trivializes the very serious study of Bible prophecy by ignoring Jesus’ statement that everyone seems to know except him, and that is that no man knows the day nor the hour” that Jesus will return.”
versions of “Left Behind” for young readers, a comic book adaption, “Left Behind” t-shirts, a daily devotional guide, desk calendars and even a “Left Behind” board game. (In the game, players collect “Left Behind Tokens” that they can later use to defeat the Antichrist.)
Plus, of course, the controversial video game.
Not trivializing “the very serious study of Bible prophecy” at all.
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.