The end of the world? What non­sense! lay lo­cals

Weekend Witness - - News -

SAN FRAN­CISCO — The U.S. evan­gel­i­cal broad­caster who pre­dicted that Judg­ment Day would come to­day was plan­ning to stay close to a TV or ra­dio to mon­i­tor the un­fold­ing apoca­lypse.

Harold Camp­ing (89) pre­vi­ously made a failed pre­dic­tion that Je­sus Christ would re­turn to Earth in 1994.

But the head of the Chris­tian ra­dio net­work Fam­ily Sta­tions Inc said this week he was sure an earth­quake would shake the Earth on May 21, sweep­ing true be­liev­ers to heaven and leav­ing oth­ers be­hind to be en­gulfed in the world’s de­struc­tion over a few months.

“We know with­out any shadow of a doubt it is go­ing to hap­pen,” said Camp­ing, whose Fam­ily Ra­dio broad­casts in more than 30 lan­guag- es and on U.S. and in­ter­na­tional sta­tions.

His sup­port­ers have posted about 2 200 bill­boards around the United States about the com­ing apoca­lypse, and fol­low­ers were driv­ing across the coun­try to spread the news.

Vol­un­teers also handed out pam­phlets warn­ing about May 21 as far away as the Philip­pines, telling peo­ple God had left clear signs the world was com­ing to an end.

Camp­ing, a civil en­gi­neer who ran his own con­struc­tion busi­ness be­fore turn­ing to evan­ge­lism, told Reuters he planned to spend May 21 with his wife and watch the dooms­day un­fold.

“I’ll prob­a­bly try to be very near a TV or a ra­dio or some­thing,” he said.

Like his last pre­dic­tion, Camp­ing’s dooms­day date is based on his read­ing of the Bi­ble and a time­line dat­ing back to an­cient events in­clud­ing the Bib­li­cal flood sur­vived by Noah.

Camp­ing’s pro­nounce­ment of a spe­cific date for the apoca­lypse puts him out­side the Chris­tian main­stream.

But his con­tention that the souls of be­liev­ers will leave their bod­ies and en­ter heaven in a rap­ture is a cen­tral tenet within many Chris­tian churches.

Stephen O’Leary, an ex­pert in re­li­gious com­mu­ni­ca­tion at the Univer­sity of South­ern Cal­i­for­nia, said the idea of rap­ture first ap­peared in Chris­tian teach­ing in the 19th cen­tury.

“It is very ap­peal­ing to peo­ple,” ETI­ENNE STEYN FROM PINE­TOWN: GUGU KHU­MALO FROM WESTVILLE: MARY REED FROM RICH­MOND: ASH­LEY RAMDHANY FROM NORTH­DALE:

ROZANNA PON­NEN FROM NORTH­DALE: said Bar­bara Ross­ing, pro­fes­sor of the New Tes­ta­ment at the Lutheran School of The­ol­ogy at Chicago, who de­scribes “an enor­mous end-times prophecy in­dus­try” in­clud­ing video games, board games, books and more.

Tom Evans, a spokesper­son for Camp­ing, said at least sev­eral tens of thou­sands of peo­ple lis­ten to Fam­ily Ra­dio’s mes­sage.

One of those is Al­li­son War­den (29) of Raleigh, North Carolina, who most re­cently worked as a pay­roll clerk for an Ohio com­pany and now runs the end-times web­site We­can­know.com.

“My boss does not agree with this … He thinks next week I’ll be back to work like nor­mal,” she said.

— Reuters. NKOSINGI PHILE MAHLOBO FROM IM­BALI UNIT 13:

Thou­sands of bill­boards world­wide pre­dicted to­day as the be­gin­ning of the end of the world.

‘I must say that I’m one of the scep­tics. There’s been too many failed pre­dic­tions and I don’t think it will hold true this time ei­ther. The way I see it is, they must wait un­til the Sharks win first. But it will be busi­ness as usual for me.’

‘I am not at all con­cerned be­cause it is not true. I’m a born again child of God and the Bi­ble says even Je­sus doesn’t know the time or hour. Only God knows. If Je­sus doesn’t know, who are they to know? It’s to­tal non­sense.’ ‘The Je­ho­vah’s Wit­nesses have been say­ing that for a long time and un­for­tu­nately peo­ple sell their homes and leave their jobs and noth­ing hap­pens. If it is go­ing to hap­pen, I be­lieve it is go­ing to hap­pen nat­u­rally much like what hap­pened in Ja­pan.’

‘I don’t be­lieve it is for us to know. As hu­man be­ings we don’t have a right to pre­dict. Many have pre­dicted be­fore and it has never come true.’

‘I think it’s all about fame and money for the peo­ple be­hind these cam­paigns. I think the num­bers they come up with is by chance and if we be­lieved ev­ery­thing we read, where would this world be?’ ‘Per­son­ally I’m quite con­cerned about how other peo­ple will re­act to those pre­dic­tions. From what I know the Bi­ble to say I’m not wor­ried, but I’m con­cerned that those pre­dic­tions could push peo­ple to give up on life.’

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