I'm wondering if I should finish studying for this week's sermon. After all, Harold Camping predicted that the Lord will return on Saturday, May 21, 2011 around 6pm. Wow--should I study or not?
Regardless, I've had several people who have approached me with some great anxiety from this prophecy about the impending "end of the world." First of all, this isn't the first time he's predicted it. He did this previously predicting that judgment day would occur September 6, 1994. Furthermore, worrying won't change it--will it? Regardless, the bible doesn't indicate that the "world will end" for quite some time. (And that will only happen because God makes a new heaven and earth.) As far as his prediction of the return of Jesus for May 21, 2011, the bible says that no one knows the day or hour that of the second coming--not even Jesus. ("No one knows about that day or hour, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father." Matthew 24:36) So Harold Camping knows something that even Jesus doesn't know. Wow, now that's what I call a hookup for inside information! But then let's not actually involve the bible in Mr. Camping's end time prophecy.
Consider this, the bible warns that in the last days we should be careful because of the many false prophets. In fact, the bible spends just about as much time talking about false prophets as it does prophets in the last day. Which should give you an idea that most of what you hear is a bunch of bunk. With that in mind, then these false prophets are actually more a sign themselves that Jesus is returning soon than are their prophecies.
Lastly, when people get misdirected on tangents like this, all it does is serve to discredit the rest of us who are trying to draw attention to Jesus. Much in the same way all of the silliness about the supposed confession that the president of Proctor and Gamble made on the Phil Donahue show a few years back. Never happened. No appearance on the show, no confession on the show, and sadly, no more clean clothes or toothpaste for many of these misguided followers.
Seriously people--focus. There is a conspiracy out there! It's the conspiracy that the devil uses to divert our attention away from the real gospel to these tangents that only serve to distract and ultimately discredit us. If you want to see some possible signs concerning the end times, pay attention to the speech that President Obama made concerning Israel this week. Maybe he's cashing in the collateral that he collected from the Osama Bin Laden killing. Maybe he thinks we're giddy with laughter to the point that our eyes are closed.
Lastly, if you are really rattled with anxiety about the Lord's return I have a solution for you, surrender your life to Jesus and you won't have to worry if it does happen.
One more thing, if Lord does indeed return tomorrow, will someone please shut the lights off in the cafe after the third service on Sunday?