Harold Egbert Camping
While this page tends to focus more on those once affiliated with the Church of God, there are some other religious leaders that can impact it. One of those may be Harold Camping.
According to Harold Camping, Jesus will return on Pentecost May 21, 2011 and the world will end on October 21, 2011. So, based on his proclamations, the world has less than one year to exist.
Oddly, the Santa Barbara Independent had the following to say about him yesterday:
Harold Camping’s Open Forum, carried on Santa Maria’s KHFR, 89.7. Whatever your spiritual or sectarian persuasions, the vet preacher broadcaster’s cadence and timbre are hypnotic sound sources. Call me crazy. (Woodward J. Left of the dial radio. Santa Barbara Independent, October 21, 2011. http://www.independent.com/news/2010/oct/21/left-dial-radio/)
FWIW, I do not find Harold Camping’s timbre hypnotic, nor his sources sound. Now, also oddly, the above was the only news item I could find about Harold Camping yesterday–and it did not mention his end of the world predictions. Because of Harold Camping’s apparently “millions” of listeners, I had felt that other news sources would announce that Harold Camping’s final year countdown for the end of the world had began. But because of end of the world hype that will happen because of “2012″ and the fact that Harold Camping will be proven wrong again on his predictions, ultimately, I suspect he will get some media coverage.
Here is some of the predictions Harold Camping wrote in his We are Almost There! book:
The church age embraced, to the very day, exactly 1,955 years in that it began on Pentecost day, May 22, A.D. 33, and ended the day before Pentecost on May 21, 1988 (A.D.). (p. 29)
As we have noted, God further solidifies or locks in this date, May 21, 2011, by placing the day of shutting the door, when the rapture will occur, on the 17th day of the second month of the Biblical calendar. Significantly, the number 17 links perfectly to the fact of the rapture because spiritually, the number 17 signifies heaven. Moreover, the number 2 (second month) spiritually identifies with those who have been commissioned to bring the Gospel. Is it not amazing that they will be raptured on the 17th day of the second month? Is that coincidental? We also have learned that the last day of the earth’s existence, October 21, 2011, is the 23rd day of the seventh month of the Biblical calendar. The number 23 normally signifies God’s wrath being poured out. The number 7 (seventh month) signifies the perfect fulfillment of God’s purposes. Could this also be coincidental, that the final completion of God’s punishment on the unsaved occurs in the seventh month on a day that features the number 23, which is a number that completely identifies with God’s wrath, thus signifying God’s perfect wrath on the unsaved? (p. 61-62)
Now what is all that based upon?
In that particular booklet, Harold Camping never explains why 1955 years–he just asserts based on his calculations. And those of us who rely on the Bible realize that his assertions do not count. 33 A.D. is also wrong for the crucifixion, and even it were correct, the 1955 years is simply not a biblical time period for the age of the church (no matter what type of calculation he may show for it). Furthermore, he comes up with his own meaning of 17, 23, and many other numbers, and then based upon his meaning, then suggests that this “proof” is not coincidental. It is not coincidental, he appears to intentionally manipulate numbers and calculations when plain numbers do not work, in order to try to force his conclusions upon people. Also notice that when he makes statements such as “The number 23 normally signifies God’s wrath”, this means that he can decide that the number 23 does not have to mean that if this interferes with any of his other calculations (and it seems that he is very selective that way). Sadly, his followers do not seem to see this.
Furthermore, PENTECOST IS ON JUNE 12, 2011 AND NOT MAY 21, 2011 (see Holy Day Calendar). Harold Camping does not even understand what Pentecost is all about (to learn more, see Pentecost: Is it more than Acts 2?). Because he prefers his own imaginations to the truth of the Bible, Harold Camping seems to load one misleading calculation onto other misleading information to get to the wrong answer. He should not be listened to by those that actually believe the Bible.
So why cover him?
It remains my view that when Jesus does not come on May 21, 2011 and the world does not end on October 21, 2011 nor December 21, 2012, scoffers will point to Harold Camping, as well as those who insisted upon the Mayan date, as proof that there have been many who falsely believed to know when the world would end. And while they will be correct about that, they also will tend to discount all prophecy, including biblical prophecy (which is supposedly what Harold Camping claims to base his own imaginative and allegorical predictions upon). As Jesus said,
The iniquity of false prophets such as Harold Camping, Ronald Weinland (who claims that Jesus will come on May 27, 2012), and others will turn various people off about prophecy. More will feel comfortable being scoffers. And this rise of scoffers who will not believe in prophecy is also foretold in the Bible by the Apostle Peter:
1 Beloved, I now write to you this second epistle (in both of which I stir up your pure minds by way of reminder), 2 that you may be mindful of the words which were spoken before by the holy prophets, and of the commandment of us, the apostles of the Lord and Savior, 3 knowing this first: that scoffers will come in the last days, walking according to their own lusts, 4 and saying, “Where is the promise of His coming? For since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning of creation.” 5 For this they willfully forget: that by the word of God the heavens were of old, and the earth standing out of water and in the water, 6 by which the world that then existed perished, being flooded with water. 7 But the heavens and the earth which are now preserved by the same word, are reserved for fire until the day of judgment and perdition of ungodly men.
8 But, beloved, do not forget this one thing, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. 9 The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.
10 But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night, in which the heavens will pass away with a great noise, and the elements will melt with fervent heat; both the earth and the works that are in it will be burned up. 11 Therefore, since all these things will be dissolved, what manner of persons ought you to be in holy conduct and godliness, 12 looking for and hastening the coming of the day of God, because of which the heavens will be dissolved, being on fire, and the elements will melt with fervent heat? 13 Nevertheless we, according to His promise, look for new heavens and a new earth in which righteousness dwells.
14 Therefore, beloved, looking forward to these things, be diligent to be found by Him in peace, without spot and blameless; 15 and consider that the longsuffering of our Lord is salvation — as also our beloved brother Paul, according to the wisdom given to him, has written to you, 16 as also in all his epistles, speaking in them of these things, in which are some things hard to understand, which untaught and unstable people twist to their own destruction, as they do also the rest of the Scriptures. (2 Peter 3:1-16, NKJV)
So, despite false predictions, Mayan prophecies, scoffers, and the assertions of many, Jesus will return. And we are to look forward to His return as the Apostle Peter wrote. Jesus will return no earlier than 2017 (and likely later) as certain biblically-required steps have not yet happened (Daniel 9:27; cf. Matthew 24:15,21,29-30).
Those who are interested in the truth about Harold Camping, Ronald Weinland (who also claims to be one of the two witnesses), Mayan prophecies, and when the Bible shows that Jesus can return, may wish to study the following articles:
Harold Camping’s Teachings About the End of the World Do Not Agree with the Bible Harold Camping teaches that the rapture will be on May 21, 2011 and the world will end on October 21, 2011. What does the Bible show?
What is the Appropriate Form of Biblical Interpretation? Should the Bible be literally understood? What do the writings of the Bible, Origen, Herbert W. Armstrong, and Augustine show?
Why Be Concerned About False and Heretical Leaders? There have been many false leaders–here is some of why you should be concerned about them.
Concerns About Ronald Weinland’s Church of God-Preparing for the Kingdom of God Ronald Weinland falsely claims to be one of the two witnesses God is raising up and that the end will come in 2008 (first April 17th, then June 2008, now December 14, 2008). Why does the Bible show that Ron Weinland is a false prophet? He also has at least one other view that suggests that he is not part of the Church of God.
Can the Great Tribulation Begin in 2010, 2011, or 2012? Can the Great Tribulation begin today? What happens before the Great Tribulation in the “beginning of sorrows”? What happens in the Great Tribulation and the Day of the Lord? When is the earliest that the Great Tribulation can begin? What is the Day of the Lord?
End of Mayan Calendar 2012–Might 2012 Mean Something? Are there Mayan calendar predictions for change in 2012? Changes were centuries ago predicted by the Hopi Native Americans. Do Mayan/Hindu/Hopi/Buddhist/New Age/Nostradamus prophecies have any value here? Why might Satan have inspired this date? Does the Dresden codex show destruction of the earth by flood? Can the great tribulation start before 2012? How might the next pope be involved in 2012?
Who Are The Two Witnesses? What is their job? What does the Bible reveal? What has the Church of God taught on this subject? Might even Roman Catholic prophecies give some clues here?