Tuesday, May 24, 2011

No sympathy here for Camping followers

But the prophet, which shall presume to speak a word in my name, which I have not commanded him to speak, or that shall speak in the name of other gods, even that prophet shall die.
And if thou say in thine heart, How shall we know the word which the LORD hath not spoken?
When a prophet speaketh in the name of the LORD, if the thing follow not, nor come to pass, that is the thing which the LORD hath not spoken, but the prophet hath spoken it presumptuously: thou shalt not be afraid of him.
Deuteronomy 18:20-22

Ephraim is joined to idols: let him alone. Hosea 4:17

Let them alone: they be blind leaders of the blind. And if the blind lead the blind, both shall fall into the ditch. Matthew 15:14

And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many. Matthew 24:11

With yet another "prophecy" of pseudo-Christian false prophet and blasphemer Harold Camping having not come to pass, some Christian bloggers (especially female ones) are expressing sympathy for those who have been deceived by Mr. Camping, saying words along the lines that we must continue to reach out to them with love and truth. However, this isn’t the attitude that the Lord Jesus Christ Himself expressed.

The words cited above from Matthew 15:14 are the very words of Jesus Himself. He had just criticized the Pharisees for practicing the traditions of men while claiming to obey the laws of God. When told by His disciples that the Pharisees had been offended by His rebuke, He didn’t pursue the Pharisees and their followers or tell his disciples to reach out to them in love with the truth; rather, He told his disciples to leave them alone. The context is that of people who claimed to be obeying the God of the Bible while actually denying Him.

Similarly, Harold Camping is supposedly a believer in Jesus Christ. However, the Lord said that no man knows the day or the hour of His return (see Matthew 24:44, 50; Mark 13:32-35). Harold Camping, in claiming that he knows something that Jesus said that no man knew, is calling Jesus a liar--to quote the words of renowned cultural observer James Stolee (out of context), "What utter blasphemy!" Deuteronomy 18:20-22 prescribes the death penalty for false prophets, and also provides instructions for testing if someone is a true prophet of God or a false prophet. Anything less than 100% accuracy marks the "prophet" as false (and according to Deuteronomy 13:1-5, even if a prophecy comes true, the prophet is a false prophet if the prophecy has the effect of leading people away from the true God). God takes the matter of falsely prophesying in His name so seriously that the punishment for this sin was death by stoning. Mr. Camping is fortunate that he doesn’t live under Old Testament law, or he would have suffered this punishment at least as far back as 1994, when he made a similar false prophecy of the return of the Lord Jesus Christ.

There was some concern expressed by some Christians prior to May 21, 2011 that there might be suicides similar to those of Heaven’s Gate or Jonestown when the rapture didn’t occur as scheduled. It comes as no surprise to this blogger that no such events have occurred. Sociological studies over the years have found that unfulfilled prophecies, oddly, tend to have the effect of reinforcing the cult members in the belief that the cult’s basic beliefs are correct. What will likely happen (and which, so far, seems to be the case with many of the Camping followers), is that there will be momentary bewilderment until Mr. Camping comes up with his next rationalization, after which his followers will go right back to him, fulfilling the words of Proverbs 26:11: As a dog returneth to his vomit, so a fool returneth to his folly. It will be interesting to see how much money and possessions the Camping cultists are willing to fork over to promote Mr. Camping’s latest prediction, for an October 21, 2011 rapture--if they have anything left after the latest debacle, of course.

Those who chose to believe in Harold Camping’s prophecy that the rapture would occur on May 21, 2011 have chosen to follow someone who already has a record of false prophecy on the very same subject (for those with short memories or who are too young to remember, Mr. Camping predicted that Jesus would return on September 6, 1994), giving the enemies of Christ occasion to ridicule Him and to dismiss true Bible prophecy. In this part of the world, Bibles are easily available, yet the Camping followers are too stupid and lazy to look up the truth for themselves, and some of them may have to pay a hefty price. As far as I’m concerned, these silly fools deserve whatever they get. Let them alone.

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