Friday, May 20, 2011

It's the end of the world as we know it (and I feel fine)

This is it- the most important, and potentially last, blog post you’ll ever read.

The beginning of the end of the world is happening tomorrow. In case you’ve been living in a cave for the last month or so, read more about it here (new window).

If you’re unfamiliar with it, the rapture is the event prophesied in the Bible in the book of revelation that serves as the beginning of the end of the world. The common interpretation of the rapture is this: All believers in Christ are heralded from Earth into Heaven, leaving the unbelievers behind on Earth to experience “the great tribulation”, a time of war, famine and natural disasters before the world as we know it is destroyed altogether. Harold Camping and his associates at Family Radio believe that this event is going to occur tomorrow, Saturday May 21st 2011. Sadly, the time of day is not specified, so I don’t know if I should cancel my dinner reservations or not.

I won’t go into great detail, but the math that Harold Camping uses to determine when the end of the world is going to occur is fully detailed in his Wikipedia entry (new window, see “controversy” paragraph).

I should preface by saying this: I am a believer in Christ and in the Bible, and I think that one day the rapture really is going to occur. I just don’t think it’s going to be on Saturday. Mostly because the Bible says it won’t. More precisely, it says that nobody knows when the end is going to occur. In fact, if you’re even a little devout odds are good that you’ve heard Mark 13:32-33 before: “But about that day or hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father. Be on guard! Be alert! You do not know when that day will come. (NIV)”

So God is going to such great lengths to keep his secret that not only won’t he tell his folks here on Earth, but he’s also keeping his angels and his own son in the dark (which, since it’s Jesus’ second coming, must be like waiting 2000+ years for a surprise birthday party from your dad. Thanks, Dad.)

I’m fairly certain that if God is all-powerful enough to create and run everything that he’s more than capable of keeping a secret from a guy who runs an independent radio station (and already got his doomsday prediction wrong once in the past, in as described in his book 1994? (new window). By the logic of Mark 13:32, the fact that this guy claims to know for certain that the rapture’s going to happen on Saturday seems to rule out Saturday entirely.

So what’s the take-home lesson? Odds are very, very high that the rapture isn’t going to occur when this guys says it will. And if you want to read the Bible, please don’t go looking for numerological secrets encoded within its pages. The secrets of the Bible aren’t encoded or hidden, and that’s what makes it great. You don’t need a secret knowledge to find out what it’s really saying.

And yes, if I’m totally off base and I am raptured tomorrow, you can have all my stuff. But it’s booby trapped. You’ve been warned.

No comments:

Post a Comment