The day has arrived in which Harold Camping will be shown to be a prophet of God or revealed as the false prophet most of us think he is. I just did a short sermon at our Upward Soccer end-of-season celebration and I joked a little about it. And some of you read the post I put up here two weeks ago today about this.
But now, I’m sick of it. I’m tired of hearing about Harold Camping and I’m tired of joking about it. Most of all, I am tired of the cause this has given the scoffers to scoff. So, here are my thoughts about this thing right now.
1) I don’t believe Harold Camping. He used to be a pretty decent teacher of God’s Word but went off the rails about 20 years ago and has gotten increasingly bizarre as time has gone on.
2) I am wondering what Harold and his loyalists are going to say tomorrow if things don’t end today. I have the following theories:
- As God, in his mercy, stalled his judgment on Nineveh because of Jonah’s preaching, Harold’s message has bought us all some more time. Problem: it wasn’t Jonah’s preaching, but Nineveh’s repentance that brought the change. I’ve not seen much repentance as a result of this.
- “We miscalculated.” Its actually going to be July! I hope they don’t do this one. I don’t want to extend Camping-mania for another day, much less a couple of weeks.
- The judgment came. They might point to a tornado, a tragedy or some other thing as the reason the prophecy failed. The gullible will buy that.
- Some new revelation that changes everything.
3) When are Christians going to quit falling for these nutters? People have been (falsely) setting dates for a long time. They have all been wrong, but the next time someone comes up with another bizarre scheme, thousands (millions?) of Christian sheep will say, “baaaah” and follow the false shepherd.
4) We need to be reminded of the importance of solid exegesis, expositional and biblical literacy in our churches. This kind of teaching could not flourish as well in a church where the Bible was taught more clearly. False teaching finds root and grows in shallow hermeneutical soil.
5) While many of these date-setting nuts are premil-pretribbers (yes, like me), I would point out that there are scholarly and biblically-based dispy teachers who avoid this nonsense. Camping is not a traditional dispensationalist, just to clarify that point, but many of the date setters are. Just because a few of our camp are nuts does not mean that all pre-mil, pre-tribbers are date-setting loons.
I know you guys who like to take swipes at us eschatological relics are relishing this, but if you keep it up, I will start publishing insulting tweets about you! (Sorry, maybe that joke is in poor taste right now.)
6) There are few things that give the enemies of the Word, of the Cross and of the Lord more reason to snicker at us than this kind of situation.
7) Let us not forget that while Harold Camping has brought the concept under ridicule, the second coming of Christ is still our Blessed Hope!
It would be great if Harold Camping was right and Jesus came today.
8.) Obviously, if we knew the end was coming at a certain time, it would change a few things about the way we live. But biblical teachings about Christ’s return never tell us to drop what we are doing, live in a bunker and wait. We are admonished to be ready, to walk in holiness, to be steadfast and abound in the work of the Lord. In other words, I should be doing what honors and glorifies the Savior today whether Jesus is returning later today or not.
The marker of the ideal Christian life is simple: If you did, in fact, find out that Jesus was returning later today, the less you would have to change, the better.
So, if I see you in glory later today, great. If not, we’ll be worshiping tomorrow and back at this blog on Monday.