Why Were Harold Camping and His Followers Wrong about Jesus Returing May, 21, 2011?

Photo in New Orleans by Bart Everson (from Wikipedia)


Well as I have been warning for some time, Harold Camping was wrong and no “rapture” (or “secret rapture”) by Christ occurred.

Here is something from his Family Radio website:

Judgment Day

MAY 21, 2011


The sequence of events listed in the Bible (cf. Matthew 24) guaranteed that May 21, 2011 could not possibly have been that judgment day.  While the promoters of Family Radio claimed that yesterday was the biblically guaranteed “Judgment Day”, it is they themselves who seem to have been judged by the lack of the return of Jesus Christ.

According to Harold Camping and his followers, Jesus was to return yesterday.  Harold Camping also has claimed that the world itself would end on October 21, 2011.  This October date will also be proven to be wrong.

So why was he wrong?

The short answer is that Harold Camping allegorized away too many key scriptures.  In other words, he relied on his own private interpretations and imaginations more than looking at the prophetic sequence that Jesus Himself gave in Matthew 24, Mark 13, and Luke 21.  It is that simple.  He ignored the fact that required physical events in the Great Tribulation had not happened, nor did the signs in the heavens preceding Jesus’ return occur.  Notice that Harold Camping and His followers ignored Jesus’ words which could not pass away:

3 Now as He sat on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to Him privately, saying, “Tell us, when will these things be? And what will be the sign of Your coming, and of the end of the age?”

4 And Jesus answered and said to them: “Take heed that no one deceives you.  5 For many will come in My name, saying, ‘I am the Christ,’ and will deceive many…

15 “Therefore when you see the ‘abomination of desolation,’ spoken of by Daniel the prophet, standing in the holy place” (whoever reads, let him understand), 16 “then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains.  17 Let him who is on the housetop not go down to take anything out of his house.  18 And let him who is in the field not go back to get his clothes.  19 But woe to those who are pregnant and to those who are nursing babies in those days!  20 And pray that your flight may not be in winter or on the Sabbath.  21 For then there will be great tribulation, such as has not been since the beginning of the world until this time, no, nor ever shall be.  22 And unless those days were shortened, no flesh would be saved; but for the elect’s sake those days will be shortened…

29 “Immediately after the tribulation of those days the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light; the stars will fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken.  30 Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in heaven, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.  31 And He will send His angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they will gather together His elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.

32 “Now learn this parable from the fig tree: When its branch has already become tender and puts forth leaves, you know that summer is near.  33 So you also, when you see all these things, know that it is near — at the doors!   34 Assuredly, I say to you, this generation will by no means pass away till all these things take place.  35 Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will by no means pass away. (Matthew 24:3-5, 15-22, 29-35)

Many of the events Jesus spoke of are still for the future.  Notice also:

31 Then Jesus said to those Jews who believed Him, “If you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed. 32 And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” (John 8:31-32)

The truth is that the events Jesus said must happen have not happened and not all of them can for quite some time.

And of course, since he ignored the calendar in the Bible, Harold Camping did not even have the correct date for Pentecost in 2011.  Pentecost will be on June 12th this year, and no, Jesus will not be coming then either.  There are too many biblically-required events that need to happen first and there is not enough time between now and then for them to happen.

Those who want a lot of specifics about why Harold Camping was wrong should study my article Harold Camping’s Teachings About the End of the World Do Not Agree with the Bible as it contains many quotes from Harold Camping and compares them to the Bible. Some realized its accuracy prior to May 21st.

Yet sadly, at least one Camping supporter, without any refuting facts, said that my article had not sufficiently persuaded him that Harold Camping was wrong a few months ago.  Now, hopefully with their blinders off, more of Harold Camping’s supporters will be willing to take a more objective view and see that what I wrote is true, and of course, always had to have been true.

Damage From Harold Camping’s Fallout

It remains my view that because Jesus did not come on May 21, 2011 and the world will 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 allegorical predictions upon).

Notice the following:

Doomsday prophet Harold Camping gives bad name to Christianity, denounced by

International Business Times – ‎ Self-proclaimed Doomsday prophet Harold Camping is nothing more than a charlatan, a fraud who has given a bad name to Christianity, according to Christian leaders.

The iniquity of false prophets such as Harold Camping, Ronald Weinland (who still 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 2018 (and likely later) as certain biblically-required steps have not yet happened (Daniel 9:27; cf. Matthew 24:15,21,29-30).

Hopefully, those who followed Harold Camping will not turn away from the Bible, just from him and his false predictions–hopefully, instead they will study it enough to realize why it still is true and why Harold Camping could not have been right.

Those who follow Ronald Weinland of CGPFK may wish to ask themselves how they will feel on May 28, 2012 when Jesus does not return the day before as well (Ronald Weinland, like Harold Camping, also seems to excessively allegorize away prophetic scriptures).

False prophets result in an increase in scoffers, yet despite them, Jesus will return, but not in 2011 or 2012.  Please do not allow false prophets to turn you aside from the prophetic and other truths in the Bible.

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 2011, 2012, or 2013? 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?
Is There A Secret Rapture for the Church? When and Where is the Church Protected? What does the Bible really teach? Does the Church flee or is it taken up just prior to the great tribulation? Who really is left behind?

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