May 21, 2011 and the Harold Camping Cult "Prophecy"

Posted on January 4, 2011

The world is not lacking in its number of cults who have attempted to set dates for the return of Christ or the end of the world. Whether drinking poisoned kool-aid to join the passing comet gods or merely predicting dates for TEOTWAWKI (the-end-of-the-world-as-we-know-it), obviously these have failed miserably – and for good, biblical reason. Despite the clear truth of Scripture on these matters, false prophets such as Harold Camping and his Family Radio cult continue to set dates for the end of all things.

Unfortunately, Camping’s date of May 21, 2011 is only the surface of this deception. According to the Family Radio cult website, the church age ended and the Great Tribulation began on May 21, 1988. What’s more,

Several years ago we had learned that the silence in Heaven for about half an hour referred to the 2,300 days that were the first part of the 23-year (exactly 8,400 days) Great Tribulation period. This period began on May 21, 1988. It was during this 2,300-day period that, both in the churches and throughout the world, very few, if any, were saved (emphasis added).

Yes, the teachings of the Camping cult are that the Holy Spirit has left the Church and it now stands in condemnation:

We had learned that May 21, 1988 was the last day of the church age and was also the first day of the 23-year period of Great Tribulation, during which Satan has been employed by God to officially rule all of the churches as well as the whole world. During the first 2,300 days of this 8,400-day period the Holy Spirit was withdrawn from all of the churches as well as the entire world. This produced silence in Heaven. This sad situation is to continue in the churches until the end of the 23-year Great Tribulation period. However, beginning 2,300 days after May 21, 1988 (the end of the church age), the Holy Spirit was again poured out, producing what the Bible calls the “latter rain” (Zechariah 10:1; James 5:7) throughout the world (but not in any church), and God began a final great harvest of salvation, bringing great joy in Heaven. This salvation is not occurring in any church, but will continue outside of the churches to the end of the Great Tribulation, on May 21, 2011 (emphasis added).

If you have not quite understood what the implications of this might be with regard to the Holy Spirit having withdrawn from the Church, continue reading the Family Radio cult’s own words that have placed an anathema (Galatians 1:9) on themselves:

The language of this verse [1 Thessalonians 5:2-3] describes perfectly all of those in the world who on May 21, 2011 are still following any church. Because churches teach many things that are not true to the Bible, including a plan of salvation that is contrary to the Bible, and the Holy Spirit has abandoned all churches, those still following any church on May 21, 2011 are not saved. Nevertheless churches teach their members that (emphasis added):

1. They as confessing members of their church are safely in Christ’s care.

2. No man can know the day or hour of Christ’s return. Therefore, they are certain that Christ will come as a thief in the night.

These dear people do not realize at all that they, themselves, are in spiritual nighttime, a condition that guarantees that when Christ comes they, themselves, will be destroyed in the Day of Judgment. How awful! It is the true believers who know the time (the hour) and much about Judgment Day (the day). They are not in the nighttime of spiritual darkness (emphasis added).

My dear brothers and sisters in our Lord Jesus Christ, I am posting this information today because deception is abounding not only in the world, but in the professing church as well. We are indeed on the doorstep of the last days, but not as Harold Camping and his cult would have you believe. Do not be deceived, this false prophet has reserved for himself the blackness of darkness forever (2 Peter 2:17; Jude 1:13), as he is of the

evil men and impostors [who] will grow worse and worse, deceiving and being deceived. – 2 Timothy 3:13

The truth is, no one knows the day or hour of the coming of the Son of Man (Matthew 24:36). Scripture tells us we may know the season, and indeed tells us to lift our heads when we see the signs prior to the return of Christ (Luke 21:28), but never will we know the exact date.

Please understand, it is not this nonsensical date-setting that warrants the branding of heretic to Harold Camping and his minions. No doubt there are many true believers who are ignorant and immature in their eschatology who might also set dates for the rapture of the church. What awards this cult the title of rank heresy is their pronouncement for Christians to exit the churches and that no one who is currently in a local church is saved because the Holy Spirit has left all local churches around the world. Moreover, they pronounce that only true believers have this knowledge of the timing of Christ’s return “as revealed to them by the Holy Spirit”, so all professing Christians, as they say, who deny May 21, 2011 as the day of the rapture, are not saved at all and should expect the wrath of God to fall upon them.

As this cult phenomenon is making its way across the United States and around the world via internet (, you will no doubt be hearing of this in the coming months. But let me warn you,

What you heard from me, keep as the pattern of sound teaching, with faith and love in Christ Jesus. Guard the good deposit that was entrusted to you—guard it with the help of the Holy Spirit who lives in us. – 2 Timothy 1:13-14

The Apostle Paul is referring to the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ, which is to say, Christ died so that we might live. It is according to His righteousness alone that we may be justified by faith alone by the grace of God alone, and our salvation is secure in the person and work of Christ alone for the glory of God alone, not according to the deceptive ploys of men to sway the sheep from the Body of Christ to trust in heretical teachings. We must protect this good deposit with everything we are and shield ourselves from every wind of doctrine by staying grounded in the Word.

Unfortunately, Harold Camping is not the only person spreading this madness. According to the AP,

Billboards, bus stop benches, and travelling caravans of RVs from Bridgeport, Conn. to Little Rock, Ark. are being used to spread the word.

It saddens me to believe that true Christians have been caught up in this deception. There may be many who have no idea of the teachings of Camping, and are merely running with the crowd in hysteria and hoping for Christ’s return in 2011. If this is you, I also hope the Lord Jesus Christ returns in 2011, but it won’t be on May 21. This is a false prophecy preached by a false prophet who says you are not saved if you go to church, and no one has been saved in the last 23 years except those who believe in May 21, 2011. This is destructive heresy of the worst kind, my friend – I pray you will make your calling and election sure according to the Word of God, not this false prophet.

Take a moment to catch your breath and seriously consider whether what you believe is actually true, and we can know this by going directly to Scripture and reading it in context. If you have any questions, please, by all means, post a comment below. I have a feeling this post will generate some traffic, so I’m prepared to help anyone with humility to walk this through, by the grace of God.  If you have questions about salvation, then please take a moment to read the following:  Eternal Life

Until that Glorious Day, the Lord will protect His Bride and she will be found holy and blameless on Her day of Redemption. Even so, come quickly, Lord Jesus!

For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Savior. Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything. Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the word, and to present her to Himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless. – Ephesians 5:23-27

For additional information on Harold Camping and the Family Radio cult, please see the following:

Question: “Is Harold Camping and Family Radio a cult?”

Camping with Rapture Loons in 2011

Harold Camping Strikes (Out) Again!

Harold Camping: Modern Day Cult Leader 

Harold Camping: Heretical Attacker of Christ’s People