It seemed like an add-on. It didn’t seem like it was part of the script. Cynthia McFadden said it almost reluctantly, almost quietly. Her statement to end the segment was, "Here's hoping they are wrong." The story was about Harold J. Camping who predicted that the beginning of the end (the Judgment Day) would occur Saturday, May 21 at 6:00 P.M. He said that everything he predicts is based on the Bible. He believes he has the math figured out and in his words, “It will happen.”
When asked about the Biblical passages that discuss false prophets and if it doesn’t happen does that make him a false prophet, he responded by saying, “I don’t even consider that.” He emphatically stated again, “It is going to happen.”
Mr. Camping tried it once before when he made the same prediction in 1994. When asked about that failed prediction he says he just “miscalculated” the numbers. He also said that Albert Einstein didn’t get it right the first try when he discovered electricity!
What are Christians to make of this prediction? FIRST, WE SHOULD REMEMBER THE WORDS OF JESUS when He said, “But concerning that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but the Father only.” (Matthew 24:36) Jesus also said, “It is not for you to know times or seasons that the Father has fixed by his own authority.” (Acts 1:7) Peter reminds us that the Day of the Lord will come as “a thief in the night.” (2 Peter 3:9-10)
When someone says they have come to their conclusion through the study of Scripture we can know they are wrong. It is not just true that we do not know it is also true that we cannot know when the end will occur.
CHRISTIANS SHOULD ALWAYS BE READY FOR THE JUDGMENT DAY. As certain as it is that we cannot know, it is just as certain that there will be a judgment day (Romans 14:1-12; Hebrews 9:27). Our lives here on this earth really are a time of preparation for our lives in eternity. Our goal is not to determine a date for the end, but to determine to live our lives always being ready for the end.
That being said, what about the statement, “Here’s hoping they’re wrong?” I am convinced they are wrong and some of you will read this post after Mr. Camping’s assigned date for the Judgment Day. But, should we hope the world doesn’t end soon? Should we hope the Judgment Day isn’t near?
Some might hope Mr. Camping is wrong because they are not prepared. They know deep in their heart they don’t want to face the Lord in judgment. They know that it is a “terrifying thing to fall into the hands of the Living God.” (Hebrews 10:31)
Others might hope they are wrong because they feel a burning desire in their heart to accomplish more. The Apostle Paul seemed to understand this sentiment when he said, “But I am hard-pressed from both directions, having a desire to depart and be with Christ for that is very much better; yet to remain on in the flesh is more necessary for your sake.” (Philippians 1:23-24)
We also know that we are “strangers and exiles” on this earth (Hebrews 11:13). Because of this we long for, we eagerly wait for the coming of our Savior (Philippians 3:20-21). When we consider the joys of eternity we will not become to comfortable here. We want to go to heaven and receive what is reserved for us (1 Peter 1:3-4).
We should help one another become better prepared for that Day, we should encourage one another to be ready, and we should do everything possible to reach out to everyone around us with the only message that has the power to save (Romans 1:16).
Dear Father, help us to always be ready for the Judgment Day. Help us dear God to eagerly await the coming of our Savior. Help us to reach out to everyone around us who does not know Him so that everyone will have an opportunity to learn the Good News that can bring salvation. In Jesus Name we pray, Amen.