Who Moved My Apocalypse? [Updated]

Someone thought ahead...

It’s almost like kicking a man while he is down, but it’s hard not to comment on the recent Apocalypse Not that occurred… er… didn’t occur yesterday.

We couldn’t help but mention it to each other at Sabbath services and had a good number of yuks at the idea that a May 21 “rapture” was going to occur yesterday accompanied by world rattling earthquakes, and there isn’t something wrong with that in general (at least, Elijah didn’t seem to think so).

Yet in the larger scheme of things it isn’t funny.  After all, many people ruined themselves financially in anticipation of this event.  Some surely burned bridges that will be hard, if not impossible, to rebuild.  Lives may be destroyed–many are certainly altered forever.  And, in the end, the idea of “prophecy” is a subject of public ridicule, affecting all who would choose to warn the world of the things to come, whether responsibly or not.

The Scriptures are clear that the end times would be rife with scoffers, and failures of false prophets like this do nothing but encourge such scoffers and increase their ranks:

“Beloved, I now write to you this second epistle (in both of which I stir up your pure minds by way of reminder), 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, knowing this first: that scoffers will come in the last days, walking according to their own lusts, 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'” (2 Peter 3:1-4).

Really, the damage is multiplied: lives hurt, even destroyed, in the present in the cases of those who commit everything to false prophecies, and lives damaged on into the future as true prophecies are ignored. Because, while there is no “rapture,” it is very true that a day is coming when the Tribulation will begin, and there will be earthquakes such as the world has never seen — as well as much, much more — and the events, or non-events, of May 21, 2011 will have done nothing but influenced even greater numbers of people to dismiss prophecy, to dismiss God’s Word, and to dismiss the message of Jesus Christ.

So, it may be easy to laugh about all of this, and I readily admit that I do, too.  But make no mistake about it: Satan is laughing, as well.

[EDIT, 5/24/2011: It seems Mr. Harold Camping has figured out a way to prolong the problem of his false prophecies by saying that he was wrong and that May 21 was only the beginning of spiritual judgment. Rather than being destroyed over five months, he now says that the world will end quickly in one cataclysmic day on October 21, 2011. And, of course, when this doesn’t happen, his followers will be all the more dejected and depressed that they fell for the same thing twice in one year. Real prophetic understanding, however, will continue to take a hit thanks to such lunacy.]

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P.S. It occurred to me that this might be a good place to plug a couple of Tomorrow’s World telecasts that came to mind in all of this: Prophets and Pretenders and Terror of the Tribulation, both of them by… oh, what’s his name… Oh yeah, me! 🙂  And for those who don’t get the title of this post, you must not have spent the same amount of time in corporate America as I did: “Who Moved My Cheese?”

8 thoughts on “Who Moved My Apocalypse? [Updated]

  1. Mr. Smith – again you hit my thoughts on this exactly. I song led and did announcements this weekend and I specifically did not bring this topic up in church service itself specifically because ‘making fun of false prophecies’ does no good for advancing the idea that there are ‘true prophecies’. The time of the tribulation is going to be a very terrible time, so when it does happen, there will be solemness, not laughter.

    Also – I, being in corporate America, found a summary of the book you reference “Who Moved My Cheese”, and thought it was an interesting tale. Because I found work difficult this past year, one of my ‘growth plans’ involved taking an online class called “Handling Constant Change” – which was, in principal, extremely similar to the moral of the book you reference.

  2. Whoever thought (and could pay for) that billboard, I’m glad he or she did. If it puts even one scoffer’s (or disappointed person’s) thinking cap back on, in my book it will be worth the trouble and expense.

  3. Cyanworth Morris

    I have often thought that this was aimed at us in the COG. The same for Jonestown and Waco. As prophecy unfolds and we warn the world, will we not be seen as religious nuts setting dates? When we talk about the place of safety, Will that not be equated to Jonestown and Waco?

  4. Michael O'Byrne

    You are so right in saying that it’s not funny in so many ways -especially for those who are financially ruined and had taken actions that will have negative impacts of many lives. But this false prophecy has certainly given much ammunition to the scoffers who will attack those who are telling the truth when explaining and proclaiming Bible prophecy. Many ordinary people may well be impelled to say, ” We’ve heard all this before nand nothing happened and the world will go on as it alweays has “. But you and all your fellow ministers in God’s true Church, the Living Church of God, must continue shouting out the Ezekiel warning, keep explaining the truth concerning fulfilled Bible prophecy and highlighting the very words of Jesus Christ on what lies ahead. And all of us who are members of the Living Church of God must pray fervently that our faith is not shaken as a result of false prophets being discredited and our beliefs being being cynically questioned because of that.

  5. @Steven Shaw: I know of some cases in which individuals emptied their life savings to pay for signs and billboards to warn the world of the date, expecting not to need those savings after 5/21/2011.

  6. Norbert

    The interesting reaction at my workplace about this, some scoffers also understand the direction the world is heading. Yes they did see Harold Camping as laughable and made fun of him but they also did not totally dismiss the thought of the world ending at some point as being close to this generation.

    Concidering the data from this page:

    http://www.unisdr.org/disaster-statistics/pdf/isdr-disaster-statistics-occurrence.pdf

    In my observation, many informed people including Atheists know these trends and where they would lead unchecked. And not all Atheists share the thought that science and mankind will ultimately overcome and solve these problems. They just try and do the best they can day to day.

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