According to Christian radio broadcaster Harold Camping, it is. His latest prediction names Saturday, May 21, 2011 as Judgement Day — marking the beginning five-month period of death and destruction before the world finally ends on October 21, 2011.
On his website, Camping asserts that a massive earthquake, powerful enough to throw open all graves will come first, followed by a slow death for all non-believers over the next five months. His prediction is based on taking direct quotes and stories from the Bible and applying them to numerological formulas.
Of course, he’s not the first person to predict the end of the world. From scientists to theologists to scholars and even housewives — humans have a history of fascination with the Apocolypse. People have morbid obsession with how our lives will end and what follows.
Hal Lindsay, an 81-year-old evangelical writer, has predicted the end of the world on more than one occasion, with the most recent being the year 2000. And Pat Robertson, the television evangelist, guaranteed a judgment on the world by the end of 1982. Obviously, neither prediction ever materialized, but people still continue to try and figure out the grand plan for humanity.
Unfortunately, sometimes buying into these Apocolyptic predictions can be dangerous. Throughout history, many believers have lost their financial stability or worse — put themselves or loved ones in harm’s way for a prediction that never came true.
Often, Apocolyptic predictions are based on the same theme: Biblical stories taken word-for-word and combined with numerological theories. But numerology can have many different meanings, depending on who is interpreting it.
I know that Camping has been well-intentioned. I myself have thoroughly enjoyed his theological teachings throughout his life as a Christian broadcaster. And at 89 years old, I can understand his excitement to get to heaven. So I want to offer my own interpretation of his prediction, and hope that it ends up serving as more of a call for awareness to take a look at our moral compass and live life in a way that will bring us closer to God.
When May 21st comes and goes and nothing happens, perhaps for a brief moment, we will all be reminded that life is precious, and we should do everything we can while we’re here to make it wonderful for ourselves and those around us.
Yes, I know that the world is going to come to an end someday. But I have no desire to know when and how that will happen.
We already have many things to worry about. From terrorism to uncontrolled pandemics, changing weather patterns, and now they tell me that my telomeres are getting shorter! For me, that’s enough.
So here’s my prediction: May 21, 2011 will be a beautiful day. Enjoy it with your loved ones. Take a moment to pray for the sick and those less fortunate than you, and remind yourself that the key to life is to die happy.