Why do many people seem to think that the world will end on May 21, 2011?

While walking through a parking lot yesterday, I saw a car with a placard stuck to one of the windows. It advertised a local AM Christian radio station and also boldly stated that on May 21, 2011 the world would end.

Being curious, I Googled the date when I got home and found out that the car owner was not alone with this prediction, though most seem to say it’s Judgement Day or the Rapture, not actually the end of the world with all the bells and whistles… Some pages have a later date as well where the second phase of God’s plan will take place.

Still, I couldn’t find the origin of it, or the “logic” behind this very specific prediction. Anyone here have any ideas?

One of the links from Google has the explanation (for what it’s worth):

Camping has a company (headquartered in Oakland, California), that owns radio stations all over the country. He apparently broadcast his prediction on his talk show.

Wow, that really… obscure…

Makes not ever the tiny iota of sense that most end-of-the world scenarios do. Makes the Ddecember 2012 folks seem downright rational.

Will the world end before or after lunch?

Jeez, looking at it that way makes it almost obvious. :smack: I can’t believe I hadn’t thought of it myself!

Does this take into account the change from the Julian to the Gregorian calendar?

Upon further reflection, I think he erred in the interpretation.

(Atonement x Completeness x Heaven)[sup]2[/sup] = ACH[sup]2[/sup] = ACH x ACH

Do you see? ACH x ACH? Rearrange the terms. Whaddya get? CHA x CHA. CHA CHA!

CHA CHA! Do you see now? It’s not the end of the world! It’s JC telling you to dance!

I thought we were all shooting for a December 21 2012 end of world date? That’s my Dad’s birthday and I’m still trying to decide if I should get him a present or not. Depends on whether the world is going to end before he knocks off work at 4pm I guess. Does anyone know what time doomsday is set for?

I believe 11:11 UTC which is the time of the Winter Solstice. That’ll be about 4:11 my time. Great, not only is it the end of the world but it’s going to wake me up early.

From the previously cited article:

it will be interesting if he is right.

it will be interesting what he will do if he is wrong a second time.

Just write him a cheque (or check, if you prefer) payable on December 22 2012. That way you’re covered no matter what happens - if the world doesn’t go kablooie he gets his present; if it does go kablooie you haven’t wasted any money. :smiley:

In case it’s not clear from the quote, the 5 x 10 x 17 thing is based in Camping’s numerological studies of the Bible – he claims that numbers are associated with topics in the Bible, and that 5 is “atonement,” 10 is “completeness,” and 17 is “heaven.” So when he realized that the number of days from April 1, 33 AD (the day he apparently believes Christ was crucified) to May 21, 2011, is (5 x 10 x 17)[sup]2[/sup], he “nearly fell out of his chair.” He doesn’t really explain what the “squared” means, though…

This would be a good time for that business of heathens who pledge to take care of Christians’ pets post-rapture for a fee (paid now, of course) to pump up their advertising.

Brother Camping has gone so far off the deep end I’m kind of thinking even his own staff doesn’t support his views.

His call-in radio show is very addicting; I can’t recommend getting hooked on it unless you are aware you will get sucked in. It could easily compete with a typical SNL skit.

In addition to predicting the precise end of the world, he’s decided that the “Church Age” is over, and that modern Christian churches are serving the Devil (I suppose he might persuade a few Dopers to come to that position :wink: ). He’s also decided that when you die you are dead; there is no further sensation of any kind unless you are raised with Christ. While these seem reasonable, they are at rather remarkable odds with all other modern Christian movements, except perhaps for some of the liberal ones which have also done away with Hell. Brother Camping has always been a Calvinist, but his predestination teaching is now positively militant, and he begins yelling at callers who even hint that an individual has any role in his own salvation.

As best as I can figure out, when he says “we” he means Harold Camping. He’s pretty much a one man shop but apparently still pulls in a lot of money.

I think Harold is pushing 90, and probably won’t see May 21, 2011 on his radio show, but I am gonna be there if he does. 1994 was great entertainment; I have his book from that prediction.

I guess that explains the Trinity! "One, two, three, cha cha! One, two, three, cha cha!

Is it just me or is the logic in the quote kind of circular? It sounds like he’s started with a date in 2011 and worked backwards to arrive at a rationale for why this is somehow significant.

This has absolutely nothing to do with numerology. It is based on the holy bible in it’s entirety. Wikipedia has a pretty good non bias page:

About 40 years ago Harold Camping published a book called Adam When? laying out a timeline with all the evidence from the bible. 4990 BC was established as the date of the Noachian flood. It has withstood the test of time and cannot be disputed with biblical or secular scientific evidence. In the early 90’s he published another book called 1994? where he proposed the possibility of Christ’s return. He also indicated 2011 was a possibility. Quite astounding evidence(from the bible) was produced a couple of years.

*“For this they willingly are ignorant of, that by the word of God the heavens were of old, and the earth standing out of the water and in the water: Whereby the world that then was, being overflowed with water, perished: But the heavens and the earth, which are now, by the same word are kept in store, reserved unto fire against the day of judgment and perdition of ungodly men. But, beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.” *2Pet3:5-8

The context in 2Peter is clear. God is also clearly emphasizing the importance of verse 8 by telling us not to be ingnorant of this one thing concerning the first destruction of the world and the final destruction. The relationship between one day and a thousand years is further emphasized by repeating it in the same verse.

“*For yet seven days, and I will cause it to rain upon the earth forty days and forty nights; and every living substance that I have made will I destroy from off the face of the earth.” Gen 7:4
Gen 7:11 “in the second month, the seventeenth day of the month”. *
This is May 21 when converted to the gregorian calendar.

When converting from the biblical calendar to our modern day Gregorian calendar, the date of the first destruction of the world was May 21, 4990 BC. This is precisely 7,000 years, to the very day, prior to May 21, 2011. Keep in mind, this evidence was first submitted over 15 years after the possibility of May 21, 2011 was introduced.

There is not one instance in the bible where God executes judgment without a so-called “date setter” involved.

The only argument against this is. Matt 24:36, Mark 13:32, and Acts 1:7. The remainder of the bible is ignored by most.

“But of that day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but my Father only. But as the days of Noe were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.” Matt 24:36-37
"The lord of that servant shall come in a day when he looketh not for him, and in an hour that he is not aware of, And shall cut him asunder, and appoint him his portion with the hypocrites: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
" Matt 24:50-51

“*Remember therefore how thou hast received and heard, and hold fast, and repent. If therefore thou shalt not watch, I will come on thee as a thief, and thou shalt not know what hour I will come upon thee.” *Rev 3:3

Will he come upon us as a thief if we watch?

"Then said Jesus unto them again, Verily, verily, I say unto you, I am the door of the sheep. All that ever came before me are thieves and robbers: but the sheep did not hear them.
I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture. The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy:
" John 10:7-10

If god comes to us as a thief in the night, “sudden destruction” will come upon us.
But of the times and the seasons, brethren, ye have no need that I write unto you.* For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night**.
For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape.** But ye, brethren, are not in darkness, that that day should overtake you as a thief**. Ye are all the children of light, and the children of the day: we are not of the night, nor of darkness*.”
The bottom line. Individuals cherry pick the verses I have referenced as an argument against May 21,2011. This is normally the extent of the evidence provided. Most christian religions put the Noachian flood at around 2500 BC. We have found human writings(rock art marking astronomical events older than this). A tree is still standing in California that is 4,842 years old(several hundred years prior to the widely excepted date). We only need to count the tree rings. Unlike radiometric dating(which is an extrapolation or guess), these dating methods are very reliable.

This is nonsense, of course, because there is no evidence of a worldwide flood or anything even close to one at that time. There’s no need to try to interpret biblical evidence on the date because the secular evidence isn’t there.

But we have ice cores older than that. Surely they can tell us exactly when the flood happened?