It is now May 22 and Jesus did not come as Harold Camping predicted. For those who treasure and believe the Bible, it was no surprise. The Bible plainly tells us that the time of Jesus' return is and will be a secret to all mankind. Knowing that, many Christians-including myself-have both laughed at and made jokes concerning this prophecy. However, I now find myself saddened.
I am saddened that a man like Mr. Camping, a man who I believe to be sincere and godly, will now face ridicule from both the lost and the saved. Was it wrong for him to make the prediction? Yes. Even so, as far as I know, Mr. Camping's only desire was to warn the lost world of their pending demise. He honestly believed that Jesus was coming on May 21 and he wanted an unsaved world to know their opportunity was limited. I remember that Mr. Camping has done much in his lifetime to further the gospel. It was his vision and labors that established Family Radio, a band of conservative, Bible-based, Christian radio stations which broadcast both across the US and the world. Millions have heard the gospel via this network.
I am saddened to think that this man who has spread the gospel, free-of-charge by the way, will now have to live with the ridicule of a false and unscriptural warning he gave.
I am saddened that the heathen now has another reason to blaspheme. Sharing the gospel with this world is hard enough, but it just got a little harder. Every time a preacher fails, whether it's by immorality or Biblical error, it gives the lost another reason to disbelieve the gospel.
I am saddened that the failed prophecy of May 21 will fuel the fires of doubt, disbelief, and out-in-out rebellion.
I am saddened to see so many Christians still falling for "Christian fads." Whether it is a "new date," a "new" kind of music, a "new" Bible translation, a "new" dress standard, a "new" style of worship, or whatever-the Christian world seems to jump in first and consider the Biblical consequences later-if at all. By now, the church should understand that there is nothing "new" which we can do to improve God's work. God's work doesn't need our improvements. It just needs our obedience.
I am saddened that Jesus did not come. I know that no one knows the day or the hour when Jesus will come, but each day the believer is commanded to look for and hope for His coming. While I knew Mr. Camping was wrong both in his attempt to set a date and in his calculations, I was still rooting for Jesus to come back on May 21--and I will continue to root for Him to come back every day until He does. I hope you will too. But let's not attempt to set anymore dates….