Call To Die

Then [Jesus] said to them all, "If anyone wants to come with Me, he must deny himself, take up his cross daily, and follow Me. For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life because of Me will save it. (Luke 9:23-24, HCSB)

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Follower of Christ, husband of Abby, member of Kosmosdale Baptist Church, and tutor/staff member at Sayers Classical Academy.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Liveblog of Family Radio's "Open Forum"

As I type the following, I'm listening to Harold Camping's explanation of the failed May 21, 2011 prediction, which is as follows:

In September 7th 1994 God began to again evangelize outside the churches. We have been looking at the Bible in too physical a way. We were convinced on May 21 that God would return here in a very physical way. When we look at it spiritually, we find that He did come.

On October 21, 2011 the great earthquake will occur.

God is too merciful to allow a Hell on earth for 5 months between May 21st and October 21st.

The doctrine of Hell was used by churches as a "club" to try to bully people into joining them in order to escape everlasting judgment.

No church believes that every word of the Bible comes from God.

On May 21, 1988 Christ left the churches and installed Satan there. God actually enlisted Satan, who is the enemy of God, as the head over the churches.

On September 7, 1994 there was judgment in a terrible way and salvation in a wonderful way; between May 21, 1988 and September 7, 1994 literally no one was saved, but on September 7, 1994 people could again become saved, only outside the churches.

On May 21, 2011 we didn't feel any difference, but we know from the Bible that God has brought Judgment Day to the world. The world is under judgment.

We won't be changing a date at all; we're just learning that we have to look at this a bit more spiritual, but it won't be spiritual on October 21.

In the next section, Camping begins taking questions from gathered reporters.

Question: Will you give away all your possessions before the October 21 date?

Answer: I'm not interested in that kind of question. I will need my possessions until October 21st and there will be no one left to take them after October 21.

Question: What will you do about people who have sold their possessions due to the May 21 date?

Answer: I've never told people how to spend their money; I've always told people their money is between them and God.

Question: You were very sure about the details about the May 21 date, and now you say you've learned a lot about the Bible; how can you say that October 21 will not come and go, and you will thereafter learn a lot about the Bible?

Answer: We have not changed the time-line, we simply didn't understand the spiritual nature of the May 21 date.

Question: Do you feel any personal responsibility for those who have put their hope and trust in you?

Answer: I am not the authority, the Bible is the authority, I simply show you where to look in the Bible to see this or see that.

Question: You have no recognition that you might make still another mistake and still mislead other folks?

Answer: We have not made a mistake concerning the time-line, we just misunderstood the spiritual nature of the judgment.

Question: Previous to the 21st of May, people asked you about the possibility of a spiritual judgment... {question interrupted}

Question: How much money had Family Radio invested previous to May 21?

Answer: I don't keep up with that, I just have made sure we have enough to keep the lights on. We have a certified personal accountant who goes over the books. I'm a volunteer, God is the CEO.

Question: Previously people had asked you about the possibility of a spiritual earthquake and you said there was no chance of a spiritual earthquake rather than a physical earthquake; how do you reconcile this with your statements tonight?

Answer: {Camping rambles about how hard the Bible is to interpret, challenging the questioner to try and interpret Jeremiah.}

Question: Are you saying that we as mere humans are not really capable of understanding the Bible?

Answer: You are correct. {Camping rambles about the Apostle Paul's conversion.} We not only have to study the Bible comparing Scripture to Scripture, but we have to pray and ask God to open our spiritual eyes.

Question: How do you feel about the woman who attempted to take her own life and her daughters' lives?

Answer: If there's going to be death, leave it to God.

Question: Do you take any responsibility for that though?

Answer: I'm simply teaching the Bible, I don't have spiritual rule over anybody except my wife.

Question: How can you now guarantee that October 21 will be physical, when you previously guaranteed that May 21 would be physical?

Answer: I've never claimed to be infallible.

Question: Are you willing to publicly apologize for your mistake?

Answer: If people want me to apologize... then may I say, yes, I was wrong, it was to be understood spiritually rather than physically, yet there is a big difference in the world spiritually after May 21, 2011.

Question: Why do you think you have gotten so much international media attention?

Answer: From one standpoint I thank God for the media, because of what you have done and what we have done, the world really knows we are there. Man was made in the image of God and we all know that there is such a thing as sin. {Camping begins rambling about evolution, etc.}

Question: How much radio has been donated to Family Radio in regard to May 21 and do you intend to return it?

Answer: We're not out of business! Why would we return it?

Question: Will you return in after October 21?

Answer: The money is for the gospel!

Question: Will you dissolve Family Radio after October 21?

Answer: If its the end of the world, God will dissolve it! I'm not the CEO, God is! {Camping begins rambling about all the radio stations run by Family Radio, claiming that money is used for the stations to get the gospel out.} You don't see greed in Family Radio at all.

Question: What kind of Christians do you believe will ascend in the rapture, and what will happen to people of other religions?

Answer: Regardless of religion, if God has saved them, they will be caught up. The Bible says the last will be first and the first will be last. All people have to know is that God has spoken, and they have to say, 'God have mercy on me!' {Camping makes reference to knowledge of the May 21 date as prompting the call for mercy, and begins rambling about the different denominations.}

Question: What advise do you give your followers who took you very literally, sold everything they have, and now must live until October 21?

Answer: We don't advise anyone what to do with their money, we're not in the business of giving financial advise. We just had a great recession, we had lots of people who lost their jobs and houses, yet somehow they all survived. People cope.

Question: Does it worry you that you have made a mockery of religion?

Answer: Most pastors will not admit they have made a mistake. All I can do is go to the Bible. This just shows us we have feet of clay, and that we're not perfect. God says again and again that he resists the proud.

Question: Then why not stop predicting the end?

Answer: I'm sorry, we're at the end. I thank you that you have not asked me any questions that I have found embarrassing at all. If you could please just report what I have said honestly.

[It is important for an understanding of the above that one know Harold Camping is an annihilationist, denying an everlasting Hell.]

[Camping spends much of this program reading letters from readers that basically agreed with his framework, and are offering new interpretations of the May 21st date.]

[Camping asserts that September 7, 1994 was "The Feast of the Memorial of the Jubilee" and the beginning of the final in-gathering of believers.]

[Camping reasserts that the church-age has ended.]

[Camping directly asserts a "dictation" theory of inspiration.]



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