89 year-old Harold Camping, Christian radio Broadcaster for "Family Radio" has said that May 21st, 2011 will be the date of the "Rapture." Now, the rapture, as many people know is the belief that before the end of the world that faithful believers in Jesus Christ will be drawn mystically into the air leaving the rest to be subject to judgment. Now, contrary to popular belief, this is not a widely held Christian belief. In fact, in the grand scheme of things the concept of the rapture is relatively new in the christian scope, coming about sometime in the mid 1700s by (surprise!) Puritans. Most specifically Cotton Mather made famous not for his theological prowess, rather the Salem Witch trials...spurious, I think.
Anyway, I'll leave it up to others to do the homework. All the same the thing that pisses me off is less the issue that people will believe this and do stupid tings like quit jobs, quit buying groceries, or whatever. It's their own fault for not actually reading Scripture. What really pisses me off is that Protestant Evangelicalism allows idiot like Harold Camping to hang around. Not only hang around, but broadcast his stupidity to people who would buy into it. Even now, Family Radio has a big banner with tracts explaining the rationale and way by which they came to this conclusion. Again. Spurious.
So, how does family radio, and the people who support it allow someone who is obviously not sane hang around? It's not like this is the first time he's predicted this, and we're still here. I suppose a week or so after it doesn't happen again there will be some excuse and explanation about miscalculations, et cetera. Bollocks!
And, of course, once that happens, old Harold (if he continues to live beyond 89) will be considered simply the harmless crazy uncle who comes to family meals. But where is the recourse for his actions? Who is held accountable for his ridiculous rantings once reality comes and shows him to be a fraud? Probably no one within the tradition. I suppose it's just easier to support and promote things that are abominable rather than standing up for truth.
See ya all on May 22nd.